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Full text of "The Lincoln-Douglas debates of 1858"

i 



L I E) RAFIY 

OF THL 

U N IVERSITY 

or ILLI NOIS 

973,7L63 

C4L63^ 

cop. 2 



i LL i nu i i niMUK^ ^UfJVLV 

LIBf^AftY 




ABRAHAM LINCOLN. 
From a photograph in the collection of the Illinois Historical Library. Evidence seems to show 
that the negative was made at Charleston, Illinois, during the Campaign of 1858. 

The Lincoln Series, Vol. I 



COLLECTIONS 

OF THE 

ILLINOIS STATE HISTORICAL 

LIBRARY 

VOLUME in 



LINCOLN SERIES, VOL. I 

THE LINCOLN— DOUGLAS DEBATES 

OF 1858 



EDITED WITH INTRODUCTION AND NOTES 
BY 

EDWIN ERLE SPARKS, PH. D. 

PRESIDENT OF THE PENNSYLVANIA STATE COLLEGE; SOMETIME 

PROFESSOR OF AMERICAN HISTORY IN 

THE UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO 



Published by the Trustees of the 

ILLINOIS STATE HISTORICAL LIBRARY 

SPRINGFIELD, ILLINOIS 

1908 



Copyright 1908 By 
The Illinois State Historical Library 



Published August 1908 



Composed and Printed By 

The Illinois State Journal Company 

Springfield, Illinois, U. S. A. 












ILLINOIS 
STATE HISTORICAL LIBRARY 



BOARD OF TRUSTEES 

Edmund Janes James, Chairman 

McKendree Hypes Chamberlin, Vice-President 

George Nelson Black/ Secretary 



Mrs. Jessie Palmer Weber, Librarian 



ADVISORY COMMISSION 

EvARTS Boutell Greene, Chairman 

James Alton James 

Edward Carleton Page 

Charles Henry Rammelkamp 

Edwin Erle Sparks ^ 

Clarence Walworth Alvord 

Special Editor of Publications 

' DECEASED 
"RESIGNED MAY, 1908 



PREFACE 

A new edition of the speeches made by Stephen A. 
Douglas and Abraham Lincoln in the set debate during the 
Illinois senatorial canvass of 1858 would seem a worthy 
and appropriate part of the general commemoration of the 
fiftieth anniversary of that event. While the campaign 
was local in its inception, it became national in its signi- 
ficance and in its results. The issues as brought out in 
the debate, especially in the speech of Douglas at Freeport, 
widened, if they did not open, the breach between him and 
the southern Democrats, made a split in the convention 
of 1860 a foregone conclusion, and thereby paved the way 
for Republican success and the election of Abraham Lin- 
coln to the presidency. The debate also marked the 
high-tide of the "stump" method of campaigning; it 
furnishes, through the unusual space given to it in news- 
paper reports, an opportunity to study this unique phe- 
nomenon of frontier life; while the increasing number of 
printing presses, the extension of the mail routes, and 
consequent change in campaign methods, lend to this 
canvass the melancholy interest of a passing show. The 
speeches themselves are of a high order of debate, and of 
unusual import; those of Douglas set forth his untenable 
position and his impossible theory in the clearest terms; 
those of Lincoln state the arguments of the new Repub- 
lican party as they had not been outlined before; and the 
combined effect of the whole is a survey of the political 
aspect of the day not to be found elsewhere. 

Many editions of the debates have been printed, begin- 
ning with that of 1860; a few have included speeches made 



vi PREFACE 

by each participant, both before and after the set debates; 
some have added explanatory footnotes; but none have 
attempted to reproduce the local color from the press of 
the day. In this edition an effort is made by newspaper 
extracts and by reminiscences to give a picture of the 
crude though virile setting in this contest of two men so 
evenly matched in polemical power, yet so unlike in 
temperament and in physical appearance. Only those 
speeches are here reprinted which were delivered at the 
seven set meetings constituting in reality the Great De- 
bate. The gist of the prior speeches is woven into the 
introduction. 

The Columbus, Ohio, edition of 1860 is followed in this 
text, but the speeches as there reprinted have been com- 
pared with the originals — those of Lincoln with the files 
of the Chicago Press and Tribune, and those of Douglas 
with the Chicago Times — and the changes which the 
Columbus edition made in the official reports are here 
shown in the footnotes; and there has been also incor- 
porated in the text the numerous interruptions of the 
speeches by the audiences. In the present edition, the 
largest type indicates the editor's explanatory comments; 
the next largest shows quotations, the source being indi- 
cated at the head; and the smallest size of type denotes 
quoted matter within a quotation. 

The descriptions and comments reprinted from the 
newspapers of the day are by no means exhaustive; fully 
one-half the matter originally collected was rejected for 
lack of space ; but much of it was immaterial, being made 
up of denunciation and attempts to belittle the other side, 
predictions of victory, and general comment, which threw 
no light on the events of the debate. The amount of 
reminiscential matter was reduced by the same test. 
Such illustrations were selected as lent themselves to 



PREFACE vii 

illuminating the subject-matter. In collecting the ex- 
tracts and the illustrations, the editor has visited many 
places, has searched through scores of newspaper files, 
and has levied upon the courtesy of librarians and friends, 
to mention whose names would involve a list of impossible 
proportions. That the edition may be of service to the 
student as well as to the general reader; that it may aid in 
bringing to their true proportions these two great citizens 
of Illinois; and that it may reflect some credit upon the 
General Assembly of Illinois through whose beneficence 
it is made possible, is the hope that sustains a labor of love. 

Edwin Erle Sparks 

The University of Chicago 
March 11, 1908 



TABLE OF CONTENTS 

CHAPTER PAGE 

I. Lincoln and Douglas 1 

IL The Senatorial Campaign of 1858. . 19 

III. The Challenge 55 

IV. Reporting the Debates 75 

V. The Ottawa Debate 85 

Douglas' Opening at Ottawa, 86 
Lincoln's Reply at Ottawa, 98 
Douglas' Rejoinder at Ottawa, 117 

VI. The Freeport Debate 147 

lincoln's Opening at Freeport, 148 
Douglas' Reply at Freeport, 159 
Lincoln's Rejoinder at Freeport, 181 

VII. The Jonesboro Debate 213 

Douglas' Opening at Jonesboro, 214 
Lincoln's Reply at Jonesboro, 229 
Douglas' Rejoinder at Jonesboro, 249 ^ 

VIII. The Charleston Debate .... 267 

Lincoln's Opening at Charleston, 267 
Douglas' Reply at Charleston, 281 
Lincoln's Rejoinder at Charleston, 303 

IX. The Galesburg Debate 329 

Douglas' Opening at Galesburg, 329 
Lincoln's Reply at Galesburg, 333 
Douglas' Rejoinder at Galesburg, 346 

X. The Quincy Debate 389 

Lincoln's Opening at Quincy, 395 
Douglas' Reply at Quincy, 407 
Lincoln's Rejoinder at Quincy, 427 

ix 



XI. 



XII. 
XIII. 
XIV. 

x\. 

XVI. 

XVII. 

XVIII. 

XIX. 

XX. 

XXI. 

XXII. 



contents 
The Alton Debate 

Douglas' Opening at Alton, 450 
Lincoln's Reply at Alton, 466 
Douglas' Rejoinder at Alton, 48S 

Progress of the Campaign 



PAGE 

449 



X J.\»_»\J±lJl<oo V-/i i j_LiJ \_/.Jl_rj.i »-iLj.\jrj.^ 






Election Day ant) its Results 




Criticism of Stcmp Methods 




Humor of the C-i^ipaign 






Ci^AfPAiGN Poetry .... 






Mr3. Stephen A. Douglas . 






Tributes to Douglas 






Tributes to Lincoln . 






Editions of the Debates 






Bibliography of the Debates 






Index . . 







oil 
533 
539 
547 
565 
573 
575 
581 
591 
597 
605 



ILLUSTRATIONS 

TAOSG PAGE 

Abraham Lixcolx . . . Frontispiece 

Stephex a. Douglas 4 

The Old State House, SpRrs'GFrELD, Illinois . 20 

COXGRESSIOXAL }>L^P OF Illen'ois, 1858 ... 70 

Horace White 76 

Robert R. Hitt 78 

Hexry Bixmore 80 

Ja^ies B. Sheridax 82 

Public Square at Ottawa 86 

Ottawa. Illen*ois — The Gloater House . .134 

Site of the Freeport Debate 148 

The Dedication of the Freeport Majiker, 1903 160 

Freeport. Illln'ois — The Brewster House. 1S60 190 

Charleston. Illinois. Fair Groun*ds 268 
East End of College Builden'g. Galesburg, 

Illinois 330 

Ad^-ertisements ln' a Peoria Newspaper . 372 

Marker for the Quinct Debate .... 390 

Fourth Street. Quenxt, 1858 394 

The Old Qulnxy House. Qurs-cr. Illinois . 440 

Corner of City Hall, Alton, Illinois . 450 

Clippdsg from the Alton Daily Whig . . . 498 

Democratic Rejoicen'g ovur Douglas" Election 534 

The Douglas Mausoleum, Chicago .... 576 

Lincoln for President 582 

The Lincoln Mausoleum, Springfleld. Illinois 5SS 

xi 



CHAPTER I 

LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 

STUMP SPEAKING 

The pioneers, who migrated with their famiUes during 
the first half of the nineteenth century from the Atlantic 
Coast Plain to the Mississippi Valley found themselves cut 
off from the conveniences of life to which they had been 
accustomed, and cast into a compelling environment, 
where makeshifts and substitutes must answer for well- 
known utilities and contrivances. This was noticeable 
even in political campaigns. Lacking printing presses to 
disseminate party doctrines and public halls of sufficient 
size to accommodate the crowds at a party rally, the 
people of the frontier were wont to gather in some public 
square or in a grove of trees, where a temporary stand, or 
perhaps in very early days, the stump of a felled tree, 
answered the purpose of a rostrum from which the issues 
of the day were discussed by "stump" speakers. In the 
same way, the lack of churches on the frontier caused the 
substitution of groves as a place for holding "camp- 
meetings. " Through campaign after campaign, both na- 
tional and state, "stump" speaking continued until 
improved facilities for making longer journeys began to 
remedy western isolation and to remove western provin- 
cialism. At the same time, the increasing political acti- 
vity of the printing press and the demands of modern 
business life gradually turned the people away from these 
picturesque gatherings of earlier times. 

Beginning with the campaign of 1824, in which a favor- 
ite son of Kentucky and a war-hero of Tennessee were 



2 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

championed in song and speech by their supporters in the 
Middle West, the poUtical "stump" became the favorite 
hustings. The news that a leader was to "take the 
stump" in a certain district was sufficient promise of 
enlightenment on the political issues of the day in a region 
where newspapers and campaign literature were meager; 
and also the occasion was likely to afford a diversion in the 
way of rival processions and to furnish an opportunity of 
meeting one's friends and neighbors. The community 
which was favored as the scene of a political debate 
immediately awoke to unwonted activity. Banners were 
painted, flags flung from staff and building, and litho- 
graphs of rival candidates displayed in windows. Great 
barges or wagons, especially decorated for the occasion, 
were filled with "first voters," or with young women 
dressed to symbolize the political aspects of the campaign. 
Local merchants hurriedly stocked up on novelties likely 
to be in demand, while itinerant venders altered their 
schedules and hurried to the promising center of trade. 
Upon the public square each party erected a "pole" 
with a banner bearing the name of its candidates flying 
from the lofty top. The rural male voter did not appro- 
priate to himself all the joys of the occasion, but the entire 
family " went to town, " to enjoy the unusual day of diver- 
sion in the round of a monotonous and isolated life. A 
reporter connected with a New York newspaper was sent 
to Illinois to write up one of these "stump" campaigns, 
and both vividly and appreciatively he described the 
gathering of the people for the chief event of the summer: 

" It is astonishing how deep an interest in politics this people take. 
Over long weary miles of hot and dusty prairie the processions of eager 
partisans come — on foot, on horseback, in wagons drawn by horses 
or mules; men, women, and children, old and young; the half sick, 
just out of the last 'shake;' children in arms, infants at the maternal 



LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 3 

fount, pushing on in clouds of dust and beneath the blazing sun,- 
settling down at the town where the meeting is, with hardly a 
chance for sitting, and even less opportunity for eating, waiting in 
anxious groups for hours at the places of speaking, talking, discussing, 
litigious, vociferous, while the war artillery, the music of the bands, 
the waving of banners, the huzzahs of the crowds, as delegation 
after delegation appears; the cry of the peddlers vending all sorts 
of ware, from an infalliable cure of 'agur' to a monster watermelon 
in slices to suit purchasers — combine to render the occasion one 
scene of confusion and commotion. The hour of one arrives and 
a perfect rush is made for the grounds; a column of dust is rising to 
the heavens and fairly deluging those who are hurrying on through it. 
Then the speakers come with flags, and banners, and music, surround- 
ed by cheering partisans. Their arrival at the ground and immediate 
approach to the stand is the signal for shouts that rend the heavens 
They are introduced to the audience amidst prolonged and enthu- 
siastic cheers; they are interrupted by frequent applause; and they 
sit down finally amid the same uproarious demonstration. The 
audience sit or stand patiently throughout, and, as the last word 
is spoken, make a break for their homes, first hunting up lost members 
of their families, getting their scattered wagonloads together, and, 
as the daylight fades away, entering again upon the broad prairies 
and slowly picking their way back to the place of beginning. " — 
Special correspondence from Charleston, Illinois, to the New York 
Post, September 24, 1858. 

The patience of the crowd in listening to lengthy 
speeches, as noted by this correspondent, finds many 
illustrations elsewhere. Three hours was the usual time 
allotted to a speaker. Sometimes after listening to a 
discussion of this length during the afternoon, the crowd 
would disperse for supper and then return to hear another 
speaker for an equal length of time during the evening. 
The spirit of fairness to both sides prompted the people 
to furnish one speaker with as large an audience as the 
other enjoyed. This spirit was manifested at Peoria in 
1854 as the following extract from a contemporary news- 
paper shows: 

"On Monday, October 16, Senator Douglas, by appointment, ad- 



4 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

dressed a large audience at Peoria. When he closed he was greeted 
with six hearty cheers; and the band in attendance played a stirring 
air. The crowd then began to call for Lincoln, who, as Judge Douglas 
had announced, was, by agreement, to answer him. Mr. Lincoln 
then took the stand, and said — 

" 'I do not arise to speak now, if I can stipulate with the audience 
to meet me here at half past six or at seven o'clock. It is now several 
minutes past five, and Judge Douglas has spoken over three hours. 
If you hear me at all, I wish you to hear me thro'. It will take me 
as long as it has taken him. That will carry us beyond eight o'clock 
at night. Now every one of you who can remain that long, can just 
as well get his supper, meet me at seven, and remain one hour or two 
later. The judge has already inforaied you that he is to have an hour 
to reply to me. I doubt not but you have been a little surprised to 
learn that I have consented to give one of his high reputation and 
known ability this advantage of me. Indeed, my consenting to it, 
though reluctant, was not wholly unselfish; for I suspected if it were 
understood, that the Judge was entirely done, you democrats would 
leave, and not hear me; but by giving him the close, I felt confident 
that you would stay for the fun of hearing him skin me.' 

"The audience signified their assent to the arrangement, and 
adjourned to 7 o'clock p. m., at which time they re-assembled, and 
Mr. Lincoln spoke. " — Correspondence of the Illinois Journal, Spring- 
field, October 21, 1854. 

SENATOR DOUGLAS OF ILLINOIS 

The storm center of political agitation, carried to the 
west of the Alleghany Mountains in the campaign of 1824, 
gradually advanced with the spread of the people, until 
the decade between 1850 and 1860 saw it centered in 
Illinois, mainly through the prominence of Senator 
Stephen A. Douglas and the Kansas-Nebraska question. 
As chairman of the Senate Committee on Territories, 
Douglas fathered and pushed to enactment the famous 
law of 1854, which repealed the Missouri Compromise so 
far at it related to the unorganized portion of the Louisi- 
ana Purchase lying north of 36° 30', and threw it open 
to slavery or freedom as the future inhabitants might 




STEPHEN A. DOUGLAS. 

From a photograph in the eollection of the IlUnois Historical Library, supposed lo have Ijeen 
made in 1858. 



LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 5 

determine under the principle of home rule or "popular 
sovereignty." By this course he brought upon himself 
the denunciation and abuse of all northern people who 
opposed the further extension of slave territory. 

Immediately upon the adjournment of Congress in 
August, 1854, Douglas started for Illinois to defend him- 
self before his constituents. Before leaving Washington, 
he said: " I shall be assailed by demagogues and fanatics 
there, without stint or moderation. Every opprobrious 
epithet will be applied to me. I shall probably be hung in 
effigy in many places. This proceeding may end my poli- 
tical career. But, acting under the sense of duty which 
animates me, I am prepared to make the sacrifice. " He 
reached Chicago September 2d, and took the rostrum in 
his own defense at a meeting which he caused to be an- 
nounced for the following evening. The result may be 
learned from the newspapers of the day, by reading ex- 
tracts from writers both favorable and hostile to him. 

[Illinois Journal, Springfield, September 8, 1854] 

The Chicago Tribune mentions the following among the occur- 
rences of Friday afternoon: 

The flags of all the shipping in port were displayed at half-mast, shortly 
after noon and remained there during the remainder of the day. At a quarter 
past six the bells of the city commenced to toll, and commenced to fill the air 
with their mournful tones for more than an hour. The city wore an air of 
mourning for the disgrace which her senator was seeking to impose upon her, 
and which her citizens have determined to resent at any cost. 

[Chicago Times, September 4, 1854] 

THE MEETING LAST NIGHT 

During the whole of yesterday, the expected meeting of last night 
was the universal topic of conversation. Crowds of visitors arrived 
by the special trains from the surrounding cities and towns, even from 
as far as Detroit and St. Louis, attracted by the announcement that 
Judge Douglas was to address his constituents. 



6 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

In consequence of the extreme heat of the weather, it was deemed 
advisable to hold the meeting on the outside of the hall instead of the 
inside as had been announced. 

At early candle light, a throng of 8,000 persons had assembled at 
the south part of the North Market Hall. 

At the time announced, the Mayor of Chicago called the assemblage 

to order and Judge Douglas then addressed the meeting He 

was frequently interrupted by the gang of abolition rowdies 

Whenever he approached the subject of the Nebraska bill, an evident- 
ly well organized and drilled body of men, comprising about one- 
twentieth of the meeting, collected and formed into a compact body, 
refused to allow him to proceed. Thej'^ kept up this disgraceful 
proceeding until after ten o'clock. 

In vain did the mayor of the city appeal to their sense of order. 
They refused to let him he heard. Judge Douglas, notwithstanding the 
uproars of these hirelings, proceeded at intervals. 

He told them he was not unprepared for their conduct. He had a 
day or two since received a letter written by the secretary of an organi- 
zation framed since his arrival in the city for the purpose of preventing 
him from speaking. This organization required that he should leave 
the city or keep silent; and if he disregarded this notice, the organi- 
zation was pledged at the sacrifice of his life to prevent his being heard. 
He presented himself, he said, and challenged the armed gang to exe- 
cute on him their murderous pledge. The letter having been but im- 
perfectly heard, its reading was asked by some of the orderly citizens 
present, but the mob refused to let it be heard, when Judge Douglas 
at the earnest request of some of his friends, left the stand. 

[Illinois Journal, Springfield, September 4, 1854] 

"THE DOUGLAS SPEECH" 

This grand affair came off Friday night. — The St. Louis Repub- 
lican had made one grand flourish in favor of the immortal Douglas by 
means of its correspondent, that Douglas would achieve wonders at 
Chicago and be sustained by the State. Office-holders far and near 
appeared at Chicago to enjoy his triumph. The evening came, and — 
we will let the Democratic Press speak — 

Mr. Douglas had a stormy meeting last evening at the North Market HaU. 
There was a great amount of groans and cheers. But there was nothing Uke a 
riot'or any approach to it. 



LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 7 

He said some bitter things against the press of Chicago, and did not compli- 
ment the intelligence of citizens in very pleasant terms. They refused to hear 
him on these subjects. Towards the close of his speech they became so up- 
roarious that he was obliged to desist. 

The plain truth is there were a great many there who were unwilling to 
hear him and manifested their disapprobation in a very noisy and disrespect- 
ful manner. We regret exceedingly that he was not permitted to make his 
speech unmolested. That would have been far better than the course that 
was pursued. 

We are glad however, that when he decided to make no further efforts the 
people retired peaceably to their homes and all was quiet. 

The Chicago Democrat disposes of the matter even in fewer words: 

Senator Douglas. — Last evening a large number of citizens assembled in 
front of the North Market Hall, some to hsten to Senator Douglas' remarks on 
the act known as the Nebraska Act, and some with the express purpose of pre- 
venting his making any remarks. The meeting was called to order, and Sen- 
ator Douglas was introduced to the audience by Mayor Milliken. The noise 
and disturbance of the audience was such, however, that he was unable to 
pursue his argument in a manner satisfactory to those who wished to learn 
what he would say in vindication of his course. 

We have heard from private sources that there were ten thousand 
people present; and that evidently they did not come there to get up 
a disturbance but simply to demonstrate to Sen. Douglas their opinion 
of his treachery to his constituents. This they did effectually; and 
Mr. Douglas now fully understands the estimate in which his conduct 
is held by his townsmen at Chicago. 

It is said that Mr. Douglas felt, intensely, the rebuke he had re- 
ceived. 

The office-holders who went to Chicago from here and elsewhere 
are very quiet on their return, and have learnt something of public 
opinion in the north part of the state. 

[Illinois Journal, Springfield, September 5, 1854] 

SPEECH OF SENATOR DOUGLAS 



At the North Market Hall on Friday Evening-, September 1st, 1854 

You have been told that the bill legislated slavery into territory 
now free. It does no such thing. [Groans and hisses — with abortive 
efforts to cheer.] As most of you have never read that bill [Groans], 
I will read to you the fourteenth section. [Here he read the section 
referred to, long since published and commented on in this paper.] 



8 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

It will be seen that the bill leaves the people perfectly free. [Groans 
and some cheers.] It is perfectly natural for those who have mis- 
represented and slandered me, to be unwilling to hear me. I am here 
in my own home. [Tremendous groans — a voice, that is in North 
Carolina — in Alabama, &c., — go there and talk, &c. — ] 

I am in my own home, and have lived in Illinois long before you 
thought of the State. I know my rights, and, though personal vio- 
lence has been threatened me, I am determined to maintain them. 
[" Much noise and confusion. "] The principle of the Nebraska bill 
grants to the people of the territories the right to govern themselves. 
Who dares deny that right [a voice. It grants the right to take slavery 
there that's all]. What is the Missouri Compromise line? It was 
simply a line, recognizing slavery on one side of it and forbidding it 
on the other. Now would any of you permit the establishment of 
slavery on either side of any line? [No! No!!] 

Mr. Douglas said he would show that all of his audience were in 
1848 in favor of the repeal of the Missouri Compromise and he alone 
was opposed to it. [Three cheers were given for the Compromise.] 



The compromise measures of 1850 were endorsed by our own city 
Council. They were also endorsed by our legislature almost unani- 
mously. The resolution passed by our Legislature in 1851, approved 
of the principles of non-intervention — [it was published in the Press, 
with comments a few days since], in the most direct and strongest 
terms. All the Representatives except four whigs voted for the resolu- 
tion. — Every representative from Cook county voted for them. 

These were the instructions under which he acted. Till then he 
was the fast friend of the Compromise. [A voice — then why did you 
repeal it?] Simply because another principle had been adopted and 
I acted upon that principle. — [Some one asked that if he lived in Kan- 
sas whether he would vote for its being a free State. — But the Senator 
could not find it convenient to answer it, though repeated several 
times.] 

The question now became more frequent and the people more 
noisy. Judge Douglas became excited, and said many things not 
very creditable to his position and character. The people as a 
consequence refused to hear him further, and although he kept the 
stand for a considerable time he was obliged at last to give way and 



LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 9 

retire to his lodgings at the Tremont House. The people then 
separated quietly and all except the office-holders, in the greatest of 
good humor. — 

A large number, and we certainly were among them, felt deeply 
mortified that Mr. Douglas had not been permitted to say what he 
pleased. We must say, however, that the matter terminated much 
more peacefully than most of our citizens feared, and all have reason, 
considering the excited state of public mind, to be thankful that 
matters are no worse. 

ABRAHAM LINCOLN OF ILLINOIS 

Among those who opposed the action of Douglas was 
his long-time friend and rival, Abraham Lincoln, who had 
served several terms in the Illinois State Legislature and 
one term in Congress (1847-49) and then retired from 
public life to look after his law practice. After six years of 
retirement, he confessed himself drawn again into the 
arena of politics by the passing of the Kansas-Nebraska 
act. In the dissatisfaction with Douglas and the Demo- 
cratic dissension likely to follow, Lincoln saw an oppor- 
tunity for the Whigs of Illinois and an opening for his 
long-suppressed political ambitions. During the autumn 
of 1854, after Douglas had been refused a hearing in 
Chicago, Lincoln wrote to an influential friend, "It has 
come around that a Whig may by possibility be elected 
to the United States Senate, and I want the chance of 
being that man. "^ 

At this time, Lincoln was among the most prominent of 
the old line Whigs of Illinois; but the dissensions in the 
Democratic party which promised him a hearing also 
brought an obstacle in the many prominent Democrats 
who were deserting the pro-slavery Douglas and who 
might properly be called new line Whigs, although known 
as anti-Nebraska men. The Whigs, never able to carry 

'■Nicolay and Hay, Complete Works of Abraham Lincoln, I, 209. 



10 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

the state, welcomed an alliance with these seceders on the 
common basis of opposition to slavery extension ; naturally 
a greater public interest would attach to them than to a 
regular Whig like Lincoln ; and the latter was in danger of 
being relegated to second place during the important 
Springfield Fair week of 1854, 

[Alton, Illinois, Courier, October 27, 1854] 
Heretofore the Democracy of Central and Southern Ilhnois, who 
disagree with Judge Douglas on the Nebraskan measure, have been 
almost entirely silent in regard to it, and Judge Douglas and his sup- 
porters in the matter have had matters entirely their own way. . . . 
This state of things, as every one must have foreseen, could not last 
long. The democracy have been aroused and Judge Douglas is to be 
met at Springfield by several of the first minds of the State, men who 
would honor any State or nation and no less giants than himself. 
We are informed that Judge Trumbull, Judge Breese, Col. McClernand 
Judge Palmer, Col. E. D. Taylor, and others will be there and reply 
to Judge Douglas. He will find as foemen tried Democrats, lovers 
of the Baltimore platform and opposed to all slavery agitation — giants 
in intellect, worthy of his steel. 

THE DEBATES OF 1854 

The Illinois State Agricultural Fair held annually at 
Springfield was the culminating political event of the year 
— a characteristic which it bears to the present day. This 
gathering, devoted primarily to the interests of the farmer, 
became a rendezvous for state politicians, where plans 
were laid, candidates brought out, and the issues of the 
day discussed by the ablest speakers in each party. Doug- 
las well knew that he must defend himseK against the 
Whigs and also against many former supporters in his 
own party, as indicated in the quotation above. Leaving 
Chicago after failing to secure a hearing, Douglas went to 
Indianapolis and then returned to Ilhnois, addressing 
enthusiastic meetings at Ottawa, Joliet, Rock Island, and 
other places before the first week in October, which was 
the date of the State Fair. 



LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 11 

Springfield at this time contained about fifteen thousand 
inhabitants and the visitors to the fair increased the popu- 
lation at least ten thousand. It was the day of stump 
speaking. The farmers held sessions daily during the 
week at which they discussed topics pertaining to agri- 
culture and its allied interests ; each evening a woman was 
lecturing in the court room on " Woman's Influence in the 
Great Progressive Movements of the Day;" and the poli- 
ticians occupied the senate chamber from noon to mid- 
night with a short intermission for supper. In a card 
given out through the press, the members of the Agri- 
cultural Society protested against the political speakers 
taking advantage of their " Annual Jubilee and School of 
Life " to occupy the time and distract the attention of the 
people by a public discussion of questions foreign to the 
objects of the society. "The politicians as well as the 
farmers are out in force," wrote a reporter. 

On Wednesday of Fair week, Douglas spoke in the Hall 
of Representatives in the State House, making a masterly 
defense of himseK and his theory of popular sovereignty. 
He was to be answered at the same place the following 
afternoon by Judge Trumbull, of Alton, the most prom- 
inent anti-Nebraska Democrat in the southern part of 
the state. Trumbull failed to arrive at the proper time 
and Abraham Lincoln, a Whig, arose to reply to Douglas. 
Lincoln was the recognized speaker for the Whigs in 
Springfield: a month before, he had replied to Calhoun, 
a pro-Nebraska Democrat. 

[Chicago Democratic Press, October 6, 1854] 

POLITICAL SPEAKING 

Today we listened to a 3^ hour's speech from the Hon. Abram 
Lincoln, in reply to that of Judge Douglas of yesterday. He made a 
full and convincing reply and showed up squatter sovereignty in all its 
unblushing pretensions. We came away as Judge Douglas com- 
menced to reply to Mr. Lincoln. 



12 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

LINCOLN AT THE STATE FAIR 

My acquaintance with Mr. Lincoln began in October, 1854.' I was 
then in the employ of the Chicago Evening Journal. I had been sent 
to Springfield to report the political doings of State Fair week for 
that newspaper. Thus it came about that I occupied a front seat in 
the Representatives' Hall, in the old State House when Mr. Lincoln 
delivered a speech already described in this volume. The impression 
made upon me by the orator was quite overpowering. I had not 
heard much political speaking up to that time. I have heard a 
great deal since. I have never heard anything since, either by Mr. 
Lincoln, or by anybody, that I would put on a higher plane of oratory. 
All the strings that play upon the human heart and understanding 
were touched with masterly skill and force, while beyond and above 
all skill was the overwhelming conviction pressed upon the audience 
that the speaker himself was charged with an irresistible and inspir- 
ing duty to his fellowmen 

Although I heard him many times afterward, I shall longest 
remember him as I then saw the tall, angular form with the long, 
angular arms, at times bent nearly double with excitement, like a 
large flail animating two smaller ones, the mobile face wet with 
perspiration which he discharged in drops as he threw his head this 
way and that like a projectile — not a graceful figure and yet not an 
ungraceful one. 

Lincoln spoke until half-past five; Douglas replied for 
an hour and then announced that he would leave off to 
enable the listeners to have their suppers and would re- 
sume at early candle light. But when that time arrived, 
Douglas for some reason failed to resume, other speakers 
took the platform, and Douglas' "unfinished speech" 
was the cause of endless raillery on the part of the Whigs 
who claimed that he found Lincoln's arguments un- 
answerable. The style of argument of each was known 
to the other because they had debated public questions 
in Springfield as early as seventeen years before. Trum- 
bull arrived in time to speak on Thursday evening and 
his speech was widely copied in the press of the state as 

»Mr. Horace White in Herndon's Life of Lincoln, by permission of D. Appleton & Co. 



LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 13 

representative anti-Nebraska doctrine. Lincoln, through 
the influence of his friend Herndon, was given extravagant 
praise in the Journal of Springfield, but his speech created 
no widespread comment throughout the state such as 
Herndon would have us believe.^ 

[Illinois Journal, Springfield, October 5, 1854] 

HON. A. LINCOLN'S SPEECH 

Agreeably to previous notice, circulated in the morning by hand 
bill, Hon. A. Lincoln delivered a speech yesterday, at the State House, 
in the Hall of Representatives in reply to the speech of Senator 
Douglas, of the preceding day. Mr. L. commenced at 2 o'clock, 
p. M., and spoke above three hours, to a very large, intelligent and 
attentive audience. Judge Douglas had been invited by Mr. Lincoln 
to be present and to reply to Mr. Lincoln's remarks, if he should 
think proper to do so. And Judge Douglas was present, and heard 
Mr. Lincoln throughout. 

Mr. Lincoln closed amid immense cheers. He had nobly and tri- 
umphantly sustained the cause of a free people, and won a place in 
their hearts as a bold and powerful champion of equal rights for Amer- 
ican citizens, that will in all time be a monument to his honor. Mr. 
Douglas replied to Mr. Lincoln, in a speech of about two hours. It 
was adroit, and plausible, but had not the marble of logic in it. 

[Illinois Journal, Springfield October 10, 1854] 

LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 

The debate between these two men came off in the State House on 
the fifth of October. The Hall of the House of Representatives in 
which the speaking was heard, was crowded to overflowing. The 
number present was about two thousand, Mr. Lincoln commenced at 
2 o'clock p. M., and spoke three hours and ten minutes. 

We propose to give our views and those of many northerners and 
many southerners upon the debate. We intend to give it as fairly as 
we can. Those who know Mr. Lincoln, know him to be a conscien- 

' . "At this time I was zealously Interested in the new movement, and not less so than in Lincoln. 

I frequently wrote the editorials in the Springfield Journal Many of the editorials I wrote were 

Intended directly or indirectly to promote the interests of Lincoln."— Herndon's Life of Lincoln, 
II, 36, 38. 



14 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

tious and honest man, who makes no assertions that he does not know 
to be true. 

It was a proud day for Lincoln. His friends will never forget it. 
The news had gone abroad that " Lincoln was afraid to meet Douglas;" 
but when he arose, his manly and fearless form shut up and crushed 
out the charge. We will not soon forget his appearance as he bowed 
to the audience, and looked over the vast sea of human heads. 

Douglas arose and commenced his answers to Mr. Lincoln — and 
his eloquence can only be compared to his person — false and brusque. 
He is haughty and imperative, — his voice somewhat shrill and his 
manner positive;— now flattering, now wild with excess of madness 
That trembling fore-finger, like a lash, was his whip to drive the doubt- 
ing into the ranks. He is a very tyrant. — 

When he arose he most evidently was angry for being bearded in 
the Capitol, and if we judge not wrongly, we affirm that he is con- 
scious of his ruin and doom. The marks and evidences of desolation 
are furrowed in his face, — written on his brow. 

Lincoln next followed Douglas to Peoria and replied to 
him at that point, October 16, 1854.' A fortnight later 
elections were held for members of the state legislature 
who would choose in joint session a fellow-senator for 
Douglas from Illinois. 

SENATORIAL ELECTION OF 1854 

The legislative elections proved unfortunate for the in- 
dorsement of Douglas and brought a large number of 
anti-Nebraska men into the joint assembly. It seemed 
that Lincoln's senatorial aspirations were in a fair way to 
be realized ; but at the last moment it was found necessary 
to elect Judge Trumbull, an anti-Nebraska Democrat, to 
prevent the choice falling upon Governor Matteson, who 
was not sound on opposition to the extension of slavery in 
Kansas. 

^Nicolay and Hay, Complete TForfcs, 1, 180. 



LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 15 

[Illinois Journal, Springfield, February 9, 1855] 

SENATORIAL ELECTION 



Truiubull Elected— The Anti-Nebraska Sentiment of Illinois Vindicated 
The Senatorial election took place on yesterday Abraham Lin- 
coln had by far the largest number of votes on the first votes [ballot] : 
but it having become apparent that he could not be elected, his friends 
to a man, with his entire approbation, united on a candidate that could 
be, and was, elected. Every vote Judge Trumbull received came 
from anti-Nebraska and anti-Douglas men. Thus has the State of 
Illinois rebuked the authors of the repeal of the Missouri restriction. — 
They have done it in a manner that will be felt, not only in this State, 
but throughout the nation. The Douglas party would have greatly 
preferred the election of Lincoln, Williams, Odgen, Kellogg, or Sweet, 
to that of Judge Trumbull. They were most anxious to crush him 
for daring to be honest. 

Of ]\Ir. Lincoln, we need scarcely say, — that though ambitious of 
the office himself, — when it was apparent that he could not be elected, 
he pressed his friends to vote for Mr. Trumbull. — Mr. Lincoln's 
friends can well say, that while with his advice they ultimately cast 
their votes for, and assisted in the election of Mr. Trumbull, it was not 
" because they loved Ceasar less, but because they loved Rome more. " 
It has long been certain that there was an anti-Nebraska majority 
in the Legislature. The Douglas men were certain of this fact — and 
their anticipated "triumph," as announced by Mr. Moulton in the 
House, was based on the known popularity of Gov. Matteson per- 
sonally, which would give their votes for him and which would 
ensure his election. 

Although Herndon and Lincoln's other friends attemp- 
ted in these complimentary terms to soften the blow of 
his defeat, he felt keenly the sacrifice he had been com- 
pelled to make for a man who had been until recently his 
political enemy, " I regret my defeat moderately, " he 
wrote to a friend, " but am not nervous about it. "^ Quite 
naturally he would be given a chance when the next 
senatorial vacancy occurred and that would be four years 
hence. 

^Nicolay and Hay, op. cit., 215. 



16 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION OF 1856 

As the presidential year of 1856 came on, the old line 
Whigs and anti-Nebraska men were fused into the new 
Republican party through spontaneous conventions held 
in the different northern states. In Illinois, "People's" 
conventions assembled in the counties and named dele- 
gates to a state convention which was held in Blooming- 
ton in May, representing " those regardless of party who 
oppose the further extension of slave territory and who 
wish to curb the rising pretentions of the slave oligarchy. " 
Among the prominent men present was Abraham Lincoln, 
who spoke at the close of the convention. Reporters 
afterward testified that the spell of his simple oratory was 
so entrancing that they forgot their tasks and the speech 
went unreported. In later years it was written out from 
memory by one of the hearers and became known as 
"Lincoln's lost speech," being the subject of no little 
controversy. 

[Illinois Journal, Springfield, June 3, 1856] 

HON. A. LINCOLN 

During the recent session of the State anti-Nebraska Convention, 

the Hon. A. Lincoln of this city made one of the most powerful and 

convincing speeches which we have ever heard. The editor of the 

Chicago Press, thus characterizes it: 

Abram Lincoln of Springfield was next called out, and made the speech of 
the occasion. Never has it been our fortune to listen to a more eloquent and 
masterly presentation of a subject. I shall not mar any of its fine propor- 
tions or briUiant passages by attempting even a synopsis of it. Mr. Lincoln 
must write it out and let it go before all the people. For an hour and a half 
he held the assemblage spell-bound by the power of his argument, the intense 
irony of his invective, and the deep earnestness and fervid brilliancy of his 
eloquence. When he concluded, the audience sprang to their feet, and cheer 
after cheer told how deeply their hearts had been touched, and their souls 
warmed up to a generous enthusiasm. 

In the Democratic national convention which met at 
Cincinnati, June 2, 1856, Douglas on one ballot received 



LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 17 

121 votes, but the nomination eventually went to James 
Buchanan. In the Republican national convention, 
which met at Philadelphia, two weeks later, Lincoln was 
given 110 votes on the informal vote for the vice-presi- 
dency, but Dayton was nominated. Lincoln headed the 
list bi Illinois electors for Fremont and Dayton. During 
the campaign, Douglas took the stump for Buchanan and 
Lincoln for Fremont. After the defeat of Fremont, 
Lincoln said in a speech at a banquet in Chicago: "In 
the late contest we were divided between Fremont and 
Buchanan. Can we not come together in the future? 
Let bygones be bygones; let past differences be as nothing; 
and with steady eye on the real issue, let us re-inaugurate 
the good old 'central ideas' of the republic. We can do 
it. The human heart is with us; God is with us. " 

In June, of the following year, 1857, Douglas spoke in 
Springfield on current political topics and two weeks later 
Lincoln answered him at the same place. 



CHAPTER II 

THE SENATOKIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 

Douglas was chosen to the United States Senate from 
lUinois for the first time in 1847 and was re-elected in 1853 ; 
consequently his second term would expire in 1859 and he 
must at that time seek a new election at the hands of the 
Illinois legislature. To compass this end, he must con- 
trol the legislative elections of 1858. The state was never 
lost to the Democratic column before 1860; but Douglas 
found himself obliged to enter the campaign of 1858 under 
peculiar and embarrassing circumstances. The plan by 
which he had hoped to establish home rule in Kansas had 
caused a situation in the territory which bade fair to test 
the principle of "popular sovereignty" and to create 
dissension in the Democratic party. Some of the resi- 
dents of the territory late in 1857 framed and adopted a 
constitution at Lecompton; but the free-soil people of the 
territory refused to take part in the proceedings. The 
adoption by Congress of this "Lecompton constitution" 
was favored by President Buchanan, but was opposed by 
Senator Douglas on the ground that it was not a fair test 
of "popular sovereignty." If Douglas were successful 
in securing a re-election in Illinois, it could be interpreted 
in no other way than a defeat for the administration and 
an invitation to other ambitious statesmen to brook 
presidential disfavor. It was reported that Buchanan 
warned Douglas of his peril and that Douglas replied, 
"Mr. President, Andrew Jackson is dead," implying that 
the days of presidential dictation were past. Conse- 
quently the new Republican party of Illinois had an 

19 



20 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

unexpected opportunity of aiding a Democratic president 
to defeat a Democratic senator for re-election. 

If Douglas entered the canvass beset with difficulty, 
Lincoln was far from being able to place the contest 
purely on the basis of merit. The patronage of the state 
so long enjoyed by Senator Douglas under Democratic 
administration had dotted the state with Douglas post- 
masters, revenue collectors, and other federal officers. 
That Lincoln fully appreciated this handicap is evident 
from one of his Springfield speeches of 1858: 

" Senator Douglas is of world-wide renown. All the anxious poli- 
ticians of his party, or who have been of his party for years past, have 
been looking upon him as certainly, at no distant day, to be the presi- 
dent of the United States. They have seen in his round, jolly, fruitful 
face, post-offices, land-offices, marshallships, and cabinet appoint- 
ments, chargeships and foreign missions, bursting and sprouting out in 
wonderful exuberance, ready to be laid hold of by their greedy hands. 
And as they have been gazing upon this attractive picture so long, they 
cannot, in the little distraction that has taken place in the party, bring 
themselves to give up the charming hope : but with greedier anxiety 
they rush about him, sustain him, and give him marches, triumphant 
entries, and receptions beyond what even in the days of his highest 
prosperity they could have brought about in his favor. 

"On the contrary, nobody has ever expected me to be president. 
In my poor, lean, lank face, nobody has ever seen that any cabbages 
were sprouting out. These are disadvantages all, taken together, 
that the Republicans labor under. We have to fight this battle upon 
principle, and upon principles alone. "^ 

There was also a possibility that at the last moment it 
might become necessary to name as the Republican can- 
didate for the senatorship a former Democrat, as had been 
done in the election of 1854. It was also rumored that 
John Wentworth of Chicago was the real candidate and 

^Nicolay and Hay, op. cit., 261. 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 21 

that Lincoln was to be used as a stalking-horse for the 

defeat of Douglas in the legislative campaign. 

Mr. A. Lincoln is the special object of admiration among the Black 
Republicans of Illinois at this time. How long it will last no one 
knows. Two years ago he occupied much the same position, but he 
was diddled out of the place of Senator by the friends of Trumbull, 
and the same thing may happen to him again. ^ 

Lincoln's prospects for the senatorship were further 
menaced by the danger that the Republicans of the state 
might deem it wise to lend their support to Douglas, re- 
elect him to the Senate, and by his victory impair the 
chances of Buchanan securing a second term. Greeley 
suggested that the Illinois senatorship should be allowed 
to go to Douglas by default and thus by increasing the 
breach between Douglas and Buchanan prepare the way 
for the Republicans to carry the state in 1860. Lincoln 
himself expressed his fears lest Douglas should shift from 
his true Democratic principles, and "assume steep Free 
Soil ground and furiously assail the Administration on the 
stump. " This very possible action would take away the 
support of the anti-Nebraska Democrats and of many 
Republicans from Lincoln and center it on the Little 
Giant. Against such a coalition Lincoln took the pre- 
caution of sending letters to prominent Republicans 
throughout the state, before the Republican convention 
met at Springfield in June, 1858, and they soon acknow- 
ledged the danger of indorsing so uncertain a man as 
Douglas upon no other recommendation to Republican- 
ism than his quarrel with Buchanan. The situation might 
be f oreguarded if the Republican convention would indorse 
Lincoln as its candidate, thereby pledging the legislators 
elected on its ticket in the November election to vote for 
Lincoln in the joint session to be held during the winter 
of 1859. 

1 Missouri Republican, St. Louis, July 11, 1858. 



22 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

[Illinois Journal, Springfield, June 16, 1858] 

REPUBLICAN STATE CONVENTION OF ILLINOIS 



Great Harmony and Entlinsiasm 

B. C. Cooke, of LaSalle, offered the following resolution which 
was unanimously adopted: 

Resolved : That the Hon. Lyman Trumbull in the Senate of the 
United States has illustrated and defined the principles of the Republi- 
can party with distinguished ability and fidelity, and we hereby ex- 
press our emphatic approval of his course. 

Chas. L. Wilson, of Cook, submitted the following resolution, 
which was greeted with shouts of applause and unanimously adopted : 

Resolved: That Abraham Lincoln is the first and only choice 
of the Republicans of Ilhnois for the United States Senate, as the suc- 
cessor of Stephen A. Douglas. 

On motion, the Convention adjourned to meet at 8 o'clock. 

8 o'clock p. M. 

Convention met, pursuant to adjournment. 

Resolutions complimentary to the officers of the State government, 
and also to the officers of the Convention were unanimously adopted. 

Speeches were made by Hon. Abraham Lincoln, T. J. Turner, 
I. N. Arnold, J. J. Feree, C. B. Denio, Wyche, Hopkins and others, 
and the Convention adjourned with long and hearty cheers for the 
ticket and the cause. 

(Signed) Gustavus Koerner, Pres't. 

D. M, Whitney, etc., Vice Pres'ts. 
W. H. Bailhache, etc., Sec'ies. 

[Daily Whig, Quincy, Illinois, June 21, 1858] 
REPUBLICAN STATE TICKET 



For State Treasurer 
JAIVIES IMILLER 
of McLean County 



For Superintendent of Public Instruction 
NEWTON BATEMAN 
of Morgan County 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 23 

THE REPUBLICAN CONVENTION 

About seven o'clock, the Convention adjourned to meet in the 
evening; but previous to doing so, an incident occured worthy of 
notice. The delegates from Cook county appeared with a banner 
upon which was inscribed, " Cook county for Abram Lincoln for Unit- 
ed States Senator. " Mr. Judd, of Cook, in a very appropriate address 
referred to this fact, when a delegate in the crowd arose, and, waving 
a flag on which was printed the word "Illinois," moved that it be 
nailed over "Cook county" in the banner carried by the Cook dele- 
gation. The motion was received with rounds of applause, and 
carried by a unanimous vote. The inscription then read 

ILLINOIS 

FOR 

ABRAM LINCOLN 

FOR U. S. Senator 

In the evening, the Hall was again crowded to excess to listen to 
the speeches from Lincoln, Judd, Wyche, Feree, Denio, and 
others. It would take up more room and time than are at our dis- 
posal to comment upon the speeches delivered, and the unbounded 
enthusiasm which prevailed. 

LINCOLN AT THE REPUBLICAN STATE CONVENTION 

Returning to the campaign of 1858 — I was sent by my employers 
to Springfield to attend the Republican State Convention of that year.^ 
Again I sat at a short distance from Mr. Lincoln when he delivered the 
" House-divided-against-itself " speech on the 17th of June. This was 
delivered from manuscript and was the only one I ever heard him de- 
liver in that way. When it was concluded he put the manuscript in 
my hands and asked me to go to the State Journal office and read the 
proof of it. I think it had already been set in type. Before I had 
finished this task, Mr. Lincoln himself came into the composing room 
of the State Journal and looked over the revised proofs. He said to 
me that he had taken a great deal of pains with this speech, and that 
he wanted it to go before the people just as he had prepared it. He 
added that some of his friends had scolded him a good deal about the 
opening paragraph and " the house divided against itself, " and wanted 

"■Mr. Horace White in Herndon's Life of Lincoln, by permission of D. Appleton & Co. 



24 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

him to change it or to leave it out altogether, but that he believed he 
had studied this subject more deeply than they had, and that he was 
going to stick to that text whatever happened. 

[Daily Chicago Times, June 22, 1858] 
ALL FOR LINCOLN 

During the progress of the convention on yesterday, the Chicago delegation 
brought in a banner with the motto upon it " Cook County is for Abraham 
Lincoln." It was received with shouts and hurrahs of the most vociferous 
character. On motion of one of the Peoria delegates, the motto was amended 
to read — "Illinois Is for Abraham Lincoln," which brought down the 
House with three times three and three extra. — Springfield Journal. 

The Republican enemies of Long John in Chicago thought they had 
put a nail in his coffin by preparing this banner, and the result is that 
they think they have effectually killed off his Senatorial aspirations by 
the above proceeding. Another move is to nominate E. Peck and 
Kriessman for the legislature from North Chicago, and Meech and 
Scripps from South Chicago. We'll see if Long John is to be beaten 
or not. 

It was now less than two years until the Republicans 
would nominate a candidate for the presidency. That 
Lincoln was not regarded as a possibility even in Illinois 
is shown by the following: 

[Missouri Republican, St. Louis, June 24, 1858] 

Vote on the Presidency. — The vote among the Republican 

Delegates to the Illinois State Convention and passengers on the 

morning train, indicating their preference for the Presidency, stood 

as follows: 

WiUiam H. Seward 139 S. P. Chase 6 

John C. Freemont 32 W. H. Bissell 2 

John McLean 13 Scattering 26 

Lyman Trumbull 7 

The speech in which Lincoln acknowledged the courtesy 
of the convention was thought out in advance and every 
sentence carefully weighed. It marked the new lines 
upon which Lincoln proposed to argue the situation and 
which ultimately won success. Boldly casting aside the 
long-prevalent idea that the Union could be saved by 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 25 

compromise and by repressing agitation, Lincoln voiced 
the new opinion in a slightly altered Scriptural quotation, 
"A house divided against itself cannot stand. "^ He 
declared that the government could not endure perma- 
nently half slave and half free; it must become all one 
thing or all the other. Whether Lincoln foresaw that the 
astute Douglas would construe this statement into a 
desire to dissolve the Union is a matter of doubt, as is also 
the question whether he appreciated the danger that his 
criticism of the Dred Scott decision would be twisted by 
Douglas into a revolutionary attack on the Supreme 
Court. 

Since the campaign was to be waged against Senator 
Douglas, Lincoln devoted a large part of his speech to 
showing the unfitness of the Illinois senator to lead Re- 
publicans in their attempt to check the growing terri- 
torial power of the slaveholding dynasty, and to ridiculing 
the pretended greatness of the senator. "They remind 
us, " said he, "that he is a great man and that the largest 
of us are very small ones. Let that be granted. But 'a 
living dog is better than a dead lion.' Judge Douglas, if 
not a dead lion, for his work, is at least a caged and tooth- 
less one. How can he oppose the advances of slavery? 

He don't care about it But clearly, he is not now 

with us — he does not pretend to be — he does not promise 
ever to be. " He insinuated that the Dred Scott decision 
was a part of a Democratic programme. "We cannot 
absolutely know, " said he, "that all these exact adapta- 
tions are the result of preconcert. But when we see a lot 
of framed timbers, different portions of which we know 
have been gotten out at different times and places by 
different workmen — Stephen, Franklin, Roger, and James, 
for instance — and we see these timbers joined together, 

^" And if a house be divided against Itself, that house cannot stand."— Mark 3:2.5. 



26 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

and see them exactly make the frame of a house or mill, 
all the tenons and mortises exactly fitting and all the 
lengths and proportions of the different pieces exactly 
adapted to their respective places, and not a piece too 
many or too few, not omitting even scaffolding — or, if a 
single piece be lacking, we see the place in the frame 
exactly fitted and prepared yet to bring such piece in — 
in such a case we find it impossible not to believe that 
Stephen and Franklin and Roger and James all under- 
stood one another from the beginning, and all worked 
upon a common plan or draft drawn up before the first 
blow was struck." 

THE DOUGLAS " BOLTERS " 

The breach between Douglas and the administration 
was reflected in the Democratic state convention which 
met at Springfield, April 21, 1858. As soon as resolutions 
were introduced approving the course of Senator Douglas, 
a considerable number of delegates withdrew from the 
convention and formed a "rump" assembly in another 
room. They were mostly from Chicago and the northern 
part of the state. These "bolters" called another con- 
vention which met at Springfield, June 9, nominated 
candidates, and adopted resolutions denouncing Douglas 
and characterizing his opposition to the administration 
on the Lecompton question as "an act of overweening 
conceit. " 

[Daily Chicago Times, June 10, 1858] 

THE BOLTERS CONVENTION 

In another column we publish the telegraphic report of the pro- 
ceedings of the Bolters Convention at Springfield yesterday. It was a 
miserable farce. It is represented that 48 of the 100 counties were 
represented, and considering that the delegates were self-appointed, 
and that offices under the federal government were promised to all who 
would attend, the fact that in 52 counties there could not be found 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 27 

men mean enough to participate in the proceedings, is a glorious trib- 
ute to the fidelity of the Democracy of Illinois. 

Dougherty and Reynolds were nominated, and if they receive 2,500 
votes in the whole State it will astonish even themselves. 

We publish also the letter of our correspondent detailing the events 
of Tuesday — the drunken orgies of the men, who, rioting on the public 
money, have been a disgrace to the State, to the party and now even 
to themselves. 

[Illinois State Register, September 25, 1858] 

SONG OF THE HYENAS 

The following, which we clip from an eastern contemporary, is 
entitled "Senator Douglas and His Persecutors, or, the Battle Song 
of the Hyenas. " It undoubtedly contains " more truth than poetry, " 
and we cordially commend it to the careful perusal of the Illinois Dan- 

ites : — 

1. We'll hunt the lion down, 

We jolly bold Hyenas, 
Though honest folks may think 
We're just about as mean as 

2. The devils are, who make 

Poor bigots torture people. 
Because the people can't 
Uphold said bigots' steeple, 

3. O won't it be such fun 

To crush the "Little Giant". 
Who, conscious of the right, 
Is saucy and defiant? 

4. Why can't he do like us — 

Stoop low for place and plunder? 
Such independence does 

Excite our wrath and wonder. 

5. Of course in open day . 

We never will attack him, 
For then his voice would call 
The masses up to back him; 

6. But at the midnight hour 

In dark and gloomy weather. 
In some old grave-yard foul, 
We'll congregate together. 

7. And lay secret plan 

To stuff with spoils our leanness;. 
And hunting Douglas down 
Will gratify our meanness ! 



28 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Although these "bolters" represented fewer than half 
the counties of the state, their action was significant and 
the contagion might spread. Consequently, one week 
later Douglas turned aside in the Senate from the pending 
question upon which he was speaking to address his fellow 
senators on the condition of political parties in Illinois. In 
a speech characteristically abusive he denounced the leader 
of the "bolters" as an ex-Mormon with an unwholesome 
record, and he fastened upon the recalcitrants the name 
of " Danite, " by which they were known during the re- 
mainder of the campaign. He took care during the 
course of his remarks to state that in his opinion Buchanan 
was not a party to the attacks made upon him from the 
ranks in Illinois. 

The Democratic press of the state immediately lined up 
with the rival conventions. A majority of the editors of 
the state favored Douglas, who had thus far been intrusted 
with a large part of the federal patronage of the state. 
The Whig editors took no part in the quarrel ; the Buchan- 
anites were sadly in the minority. Some of the Doug- 
las supporters went so far as to place the name of Douglas 
at the head of a column on the editorial page, as if the elec- 
tion of a senator were to be determined by popular vote. 
This, added to the direct nomination of Lincoln by the 
Republican convention, gave additional color to the popu- 
lar aspect of the campaign. It was as if the two were 
running for the presidency rather than for an election 
to a senatorship through a state legislature. 

[Illinois State Register, Springfield, June 17] 

Mr. Lincoln is recommended for Senator and however unusual 
such an issue may be, it is now plainly and squarely one before the 
people of the State for United States senator — Stephen A. Douglas on 
the one side and Abraham Lincoln- of the other; the Democracy of 
the one against the black republican principles of the other. 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 29 

[New York Daily Tribune, June 26, 1858] 

ILLINOIS 



Sketch of tlie Hon. Abraham Lincoln 
Correspondence of the New York Tribune 

CoLLiNsviLLE, III., Juiie' 15, 1858 
The decided expressions of the RepubHcan Convention of this 
State in favor of Abraham Lincoln for Senator, in the place now held 
by Judge Douglas, will give interest to anything throwing light upon 
the character and abilities of Mr. Lincoln, especially to those who are 
not acquainted with him. As he has served only one term in the 
Lower House of Congress, and that so long ago as 1846-8, there must 
be many who would like to know how he will be likely to fill the place 
of the now so notorious — I might say distinguished — Douglas. Is he 
a match for his ''illustrious predecessor"? 

But I am forgetting myself, which was chiefly to relate an incident 
showing the two men in contact and somewhat in comparsion. I 
think it has never been in print. 

It was in the Fall of 1854, when the Nebraska bill was a fresh topic, 
Lincoln was speaking to some two thousand persons in the State 
House at Springfield. Douglas sat on the Clerk's platform, just under 
the Speaker's stand. In his introduction, Lincoln complimented his 
distinguished friend ; said he himself had not been in public life as he 
had; and if he should, on that account, misstate any fact, he would be 
very much obliged to his friend the Judge, if he would correct him. 
Judge Douglas rose with a good deal of Senatorial dignity, and said 
that it was not always agreeable to a speaker to be interrupted in the 
course of his remarks, and therefore, if he should have anything to say,. 
he would wait until Mr. Lincoln was done. For some reason, he did 
not keep to his purpose, but quite frequently rose to put in a word 
when he seemed to think his case required immediate attention. One 
of these passages — and it was pretty nearly a sample of the rest — was 
in this wise : Lincoln had been giving a history of the legislation of the 
Federal Government on the subject of Slavery, and referring to the 
opinions held by public men, and had come down to the Nicholson 
letter, wherein the denial of the power of Congress to prohibit Slavery 
in the Territories was first presented to the public. Said he, " I don't 
know what my friend the Judge thinks" [and he looked down upon 



30 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

him with a smile half playful, half roguish], "but really it seems to me 
that that was the origin of the Nebraska bill. " This stroke at the 
Senator's laurels in the matter of the "great principle," created a 
good deal of laughter and some applause, which brought the Judge to 
his feet. Shaking back his heavy hair, and looking much like a roused 
lion, he said, in his peculiarly heavy voice which he uses with so much 
effect when he wishes to be impressive, "No, Sir! I will tell you 
what was the origin of the Nebraska bill. It was this. Sir! God 
created man, and placed before him both good and evil, and left him 
free to choose for himself. That was the origin of the Nebraska bill. " 
As he said this, Lincoln looked the picture of good nature and patience. 
As Douglas concluded, the smile which lurked in the corners of 
Lincoln's mouth parted his lips, and he replied, "Well, then, I think 
it is a great honor to Judge Douglas that he was the first man to dis- 
cover that fact. " This brought down the house, of course, but I could 
not perceive that the Judge appreciated the fun in the least. . . W. 

Congress adjourned June 1, 1858, and Douglas started 
for Chicago by way of northern New York, where he 
intended paying a visit to his aged mother. So promi- 
nently before the public was he at this time, in view of the 
coming contest in Illinois, that the newspapers chronicled 
his every movement on the way. 

[Chicago Times, June 27] 

SENATOR DOUGLAS 

Senator Douglas, accompanied by his beautiful and accomplished wife, ar- 
rived at the Girard House, Monday night, from Washington en route for 
Chicago, where he proposes opening his campaign. — He was visited, in the 
course of yesterday, by a large number of our most influential citizens — hold- 
ing quite an impromptu levee, in fact, for no special announcement of his 
arrival in this city had been made. He appeared in excellent health and 
spirits. He left New York by the afternoon train. — Phila. Press. 

[Daily Whig, Quincy, Ills., July 1] 

Senator Douglas is at present at his mother's in the State of New 
York — recruiting previous to entering upon the campaign in this State 
It is said that he will open the ball at Carlinville, Macoupin County. 

Col. Carpenter on the part of the Administration Democrats, is to 
take the stump, it is said, and meet Douglas in the field. 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 31 

The Republican standard bearer will be Hon. Abe Lincoln — and 
we could not place our cause in abler hands. 

Let the people hear and judge between the principles of these con- 
tending parties. 

[Cincinnati, Ohio, Commercial, July 6, 1858] 

ME. DOUGLAS IN ILLINOIS 



The Dismantled Democracy and the Administration 

We have been informed, from a satisfactory source, that it is the 
purpose of Mr. Senator Douglas (now en route homeward) to enter 
at once upon the state campaign of Illinois, which, in the approaching 
fall election, is to determine the complexion of the Legislature, and 
thus whether Mr. Douglas or some other man is, for the next term of 
six years, to take the chair so long occupied in the United States 
Senate by the " Little Giant. " We learn, too, that adopting a con- 
ciliatory course toward the administration, the plan of the campaign 
of Mr. Douglas will be war to the knife against the destructive anti- 
slavery heresies of the late Illinois State Convention, and of their 
Senatorial nominee, Mr. Lincoln; and that thus, taking up the glove 
thrown before him, Mr. Douglas, upon the broad democratic principles 
of constitutional obligations and state rights, wiU make a fair field 
fight with the opposition upon the ground of their own choosing. 

In this aspect of affairs, the Illinois Republicans having coolly 
turned their backs upon Mr. Douglas, he is in an excellent position to 
understand the exact necessities of his case, the difficulties of his party 
and the way to surmount them. 

Considering, therefore, the dangers which surround the Illinois 
Democracy, with the critical position of Mr. Douglas on the one hand, 
and the excessive confidence of the opposition on the other, we may 
anticipate a campaign out there as desperate as that of the Pennsyl- 
vania October election of 1856, and perhaps as momentous to the 
Democratic party in reference to the Presidency, 

[Cincinyiati, Ohio, Commercial, July 8, 1858] 

ILLINOIS POLITICS 

A correspondent, a particular friend and admirer of Douglas, writing 
from Olney, 111., under date of July 3d, to the Vincennes Sun, gives a 
glimpse of the fight in Illinois. 



32 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

The Little Giant will soon be among us, and as he moves about we can 
tell how the people feel. It is conceded here that it's all right in this district. 

Every district where there is any hope will be looked after and nothing 
left undone that will tend to success. By about September the whole state 
will be alive with stumpers, — Douglas will be backed by the "giants," and the 
Black Republican Ajaxes will be in the field armed for the conflict. Distin- 
tinguished speakers from all parts of the Union on both sides are promised. 

Lincoln is popular — the strongest man the opposition have, — is nearly fifty 
years old— six feet two — slightly stoop-shouldered — very muscular and pow- 
erful — dark eyes — a quizzical, pleasant, raw-boned face — tells a a story better 
than anybody else — is a good lawyer — and is what the world calls a devihsh 
good fellow. — He would have been senator before, had not Trumbull's su- 
perior cunning overreached him. But, in dignity, intellect and majesty of 
mind it is not pretended that he is Douglas's equal. 

[Cincinnati, Ohio, Commercial, July 13] 

MR. DOUGLAS-HIS PASSAGE THROUGH OHIO-HIS 

COMFORTERS 

The Honorable Stephen A. Douglas appears to have put himself into 
not very desirable hands in his passage through the state of Ohio. 
It is true that if he found it advisable to put himself into any hands 
whatever, he had left to him very little freedom of choice. The orig- 
inal Buchanan men, and those whose interests it is still to appear to 
cling to the presidential faction, could not, of course, have anything 
to do with him. 

Having addressed a large gathering of the people at 
Clifton Springs, N. Y., on the Fourth of July, Douglas 
departed for Chicago. In New York, at Cleveland, and 
at Toledo, Ohio, he was tendered serenades and receptions. 
Recalling the unfortunate manner in which the people of 
Chicago had greeted him four years before, his supporters 
now planned a reception which, by its very magnitude 
would overwhelm hostility if any were manifest and 
would also show Buchanan that Illinois chose to follow 
her senator rather than the President. It v»^as the first 
of the extraordinary rallies made to the banner of Douglas 
in the campaign of 1858. 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 33 

[Illinois State Register, Springfield, July 12, 1858] 
[From the Chicago Times of Saturday, 10th] 

SENATOR DOUGLAS AT HOME 



Triumphant Demonstration!— Enthusiastic Welcome.— Cheering- Tribute 
to a Public Servant!— Grand Ovation -30,000 People Assembled!- 
Great Speech of Senator Doug-las. Bonfires, Fireworks, Salutes, 
Ac— Chicag-o to her Senator.— Departure of the Committee 

As per announcement in the programme of the reception of Hon, 
Stephen A. Douglas, pubHshed by authority of the committee of ar- 
rangements, an extra train of cars v^^as ready at 1 o'clock, yesterday, 
to convey the committee of reception to Michigan City — distant from 
Chicago sixty mUes — at w^hich place Senator Douglas was to take the 
Illinois Central road on the return trip. 

In the meantime, also, a great number of national flags were being 
elevated at conspicuous points near the depot and elsewhere, and 
banners of different shapes and colors, besides streamers, pennants, 
etc., were disposed in all directions. 

It was now 1 o'clock. The train was to start at that hour, and all 
things being ready, the cars moved off amid shouts from the outside, 
and answering shouts and music from within. In all the company 
numbered four hundred. A splendid banner, that of the young Men's 
Democratic Club, was carried upon the locomotive. 

The train proceeded to Michigan City, where it was met by a host 
of gallant Indianians, who accompanied the Judge from Laporte to 
Michigan City. Some malicious person having secretly spiked the 
only gun in the town, the democracy obtained a large anvil, and plac- 
ing it in the middle of the street, made the welkin echo with its 
repeated discharges. 



THE RETURN TO THE CITY. 

At a few minutes after five o'clock the procession was formed and 
proceeded to the depot. Judge Douglas being now the guest of the 
committee. The train soon started, and all along the road — at every 
station, at almost every farmhouse and laborer's cabin — in every 
cornfield and at every point where laborers were engaged — there was 



34 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

exhibited by cheers, by waving of handkerchiefs and other demon-' 
strations, that cordial " welcome home " to the great representative of 
popular rights. 

At the outer depot of the Illinois Central railroad the national flag 
had been raised by the operatives, and a swivel belched forth its roar- 
ing notes of welcome. The hardy hands of the mechanics resounded 
with applause, and cheers and huzzas continued until the train had 
passed on to the city. 

As the train passed along from Twelfth street to the depot, crowds 
of ladies were assembled on the doorsteps of the residences on Mich- 
igan avenue, waving banners and handkerchiefs; the lake part was 
crowded by persons hastily proceeding to the depot. Long before the 
train could enter the station house, thousands had crossed over the 
breakwater, got upon the track, and climbed into the cars, and when 
the latter reached the depot they were literally crammed inside and 
covered on top by ardent and enthusiastic friends and supporters of 
the illustrious Illinoisan, 

Capt. Smith's artillery were, in the meantime, firing from Dear- 
born Park a salute of 150 guns, (guns were also firing in the west and 
north divisions) the booming of the cannon alone rising above the 
cheering plaudits of the assembled multitude. The hotels and prin- 
cipal buildings of the city were adorned with flags. 

The Adams House, near the Central depot, was most handsomely 
decorated. The national flag, a banner bearing the motto ''Douglas, 
the champion of Popular Sovereignty," as well as numerous flags 
belonging to vessels in the harbor were suspended across the street, 
presenting a grand display. The doors, windows, balconies, and 
roofs of the Adams House, as well as the private residences in the 
neighborhood, and the large stores and warehouses along Lake Street 
were crowded with ladies and other persons — all cheering and wel- 
coming the senator. At the depot, a procession consisting of the 
"Montgomery Guards," Capt. Gleason and the "Emmet Guards," 
&c., Lieut. Stuart commanding, acting as the military escort, was then 
formed. Judge Douglas was in an open barouche drawn by six 
horses, and was followed by the committee of arrangements in other 
carriages. The procession proceeded up Lake to Wabash Avenue, 
down Wabash Avenue to Dearborn street, and thence by Dearborn 
to the Tremont House. 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 35 

Throughout the whole route of the procession, the senator was 
greeted from house top and window, from street, from awning post 
and balcony by every demonstration of grateful welcome. 

THE SCENE AT THE TREMONT 

As early as half past six o'clock people began to collect around the 
Tremont House. The omnibusses from Union Park, and from the 
southern and northern limits of the city, were crowded with suburban 
residents, and people came on foot from the remotest parts of the 
city, taking up eligible standing places around the hotel. 

At about half past seven the booming of cannon on the lake shore 
having announced the arrival of the train, it was the signal for the 
assembling of thousands of others who rapidly filled up every vacant 
spot in Lake street, from State, for the distance of a block and a half. 
Dearborn street was also thronged from Lake to Randolph. The 
area occupied by the people, packed together in one dense mass, was 
considerably over fifty thousand square feet. In addition to this, every 
window and roof within hearing distance was occupied, a large portion 
of the occupants being ladies. The assemblage of people who wel- 
comed in vociferous and prolonged shouts of joy the return of Senator 
Douglas numbered at the least calculation thirty thousand. 

Chicago has never before witnessed such a sight. A field of human 
forms parted with difficulty as the procession passed through, and 
closed instantly behind it, with the surge and roar of the waters of a 
sea; an ocean of upturned faces, extending beyond the furthest limits 
to which the senator's powerful voice could reach, from which broke 
one spontaneous burst of applause as he appeared upon the balcony 
before them! Over all the light of the illumination, and the glare 
and glitter of the fireworks, spread an appearance which is indes- 
cribable ! 

The building just across the street fron the Tremont, on Lake, 
occupied by Jno. Parmly, hat manufacturer, and others, was finely 
illuminated, and a handsome transparency was displayed, bearing the 
words "Welcome to Stephen A. Douglas, the Defender of Popular 
Sovereignty. " 

THE SPEECHES 

Chas. Walker, Esq., then appeared on the Lake Street balcony 
and in a very neat address, welcomed Senator Douglas to his con- 
stituents from a prolonged, but glorious struggle in which he defended 
and maintained the right. 



36 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Senator Douglas responded in a speech of over an hour in which he 
briefly reviewed the history of the past and the prospect of the future. 

We could not but remember the scene of 1854, when instead of wel- 
coming huzzas he was greeted with denunciation. The past, how- 
ever, is gone ; the present is upon us ; and instead of the mere handful 
who indorsed his course in 1854, he now can count thousands who 
have approved his course, and an united constituency who applaud 
and admire the fidelity with which he has adhered to his principles 
and to the pledges he made to the people. 

[Chicago Daily Journal, July 9, 1858] 

THE OVATION TO SENATOR DOUGLAS 

The followers of Senator Douglas are straining their utmost powers 
to make the demonstration in behalf of their champion on his return 
home, a great and " glorious " affair, this evening. If it does not prove 
imposing, and if there is not a tremendous outward show of " enthusi- 
asm " displayed on the occasion, it will not be for lack of effort on the 
part of the Senator's more active worshippers to render it so. They 
have been begging and scraping together aU the spare dollars, shil- 
lings, dimes and six pences that could be obtained, for the last few 
weeks, — have bought powder enough to supply the Utah war — have 
expended large sums in getting up banners and devices — and have 
laid out not a small sum in hiring men and boys to make up a big 
procession and make a big noise. Surely, after such extensive 
preparations, we have a right to anticipate a great time, and shall 
expect to see the lionized Senator perfectly emblazoned in the glory 
of triumphant honors. 

[From the same paper] 

Personal, — Hon. A. Lincoln, 0. H. Browning, Judge I. 0. Wilkin- 
son of Rock Island, and other distinguished gentlemen from different 
parts of the State are at present in the city, in attendance on the L^. S. 
District Court. 

[Chicago Daily Journal, July 10, 1858] 

SPEECH OF SENATOR DOUGLAS LAST NIGHT 

Several thousand people, amongst whom were many Republicans, 
who were present as a matter of curiosity — assembled in front of the 
Tremont House last evening, on the occasion of the reception of 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 37 

Senator Douglas, to hear what account he had to give of hmiself 
and what he had to say in reference to the pohtical topics of the day. 
He spoke for an hour and a half, in his usual style — dispensing 
" soft-soap " quite freely, setting himself forth as a hero of no common 
order, and indulging even more than ordinarily in that inexorable 
habit of misrepresentation, and prevarication which appears in poli- 
tical matters to have become a sort of second nature to him. 

Dropping the Kansas question, he next paid his respects to Mr. 
Lincoln and the speech that gentleman made at Springfield at the 
late Republican State Convention. He considered Mr. Lincoln a 
" kind, amiable, high-minded gentleman, a good citizen, and an honor- 
able opponent, " but took exception to the sentiments of his speech. 

He repeated, almost word for word, the language of his last year's 
Springfield speech in regard to " negro equality " and very falsely im- 
puted to Mr. Lincoln this doctrine of "negro equality, " while the fact 
is that Mr. Lincoln has no more to do with negroes, or the question of 
placing negroes on an equality with white men, than Douglas has to 
do with the Americanizing of the Hottentots or the Fejee Islanders. 

[From the same paper] 

The following scene, as described by the Tribune, took place pre- 
liminary to the speech : 

Shortly before eight o'clock the procession from the depot, preceded by a 
band of music, and two companies of militia, reached the corner of Lake and 
Dearborn streets, from Randolph. The hack drivers charged furiously on the 
dense throng and by dint of whipping and swearing, the carriage containing 
Mr. Douglas was brought up to the north entrance of the house. At this 
juncture a blockhead on the upper balcony commenced firing off rockets, and 
of course made a dozen horses crazy. Those attached to the carriage in which 
Mr. Douglas sat, plunged frantically in every direction. Several persons 
were bruised. One man had his leg broken in three places, and was borne 
fainting into a drug store. Mr. Douglas escaped indoors, and ahnost imme- 
diately reappeared on the north balcony, when Charles Walker, Esq., com- 
menced his reception speech. 

At this point of the proceedings a furious battle commenced in the street be- 
tween the crowd and the remaining hack drivers, who persisted insanely in 
plowing through the living sea in front of the building. In the confusion and 
excitement, Mr. Walker's speech came to an abrupt and embarrassing ter- 
mination — leaving people uncertain whether he had forgotten the balance, or 
had adopted the novel and pecuUar way of welcoming a Senator. Not one 
man in fifty of the entire audience knew that he had made a speech at all. 



38 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

The battle in the street below was kept up for some ten minutes with various 
results, — one man being knocked down with the butt end of a whip, and a 
driver being pulled off his seat three times in five minutes. The horses were 
finally extricated and Mr. Douglas commenced. 

[Daily Herald, Quincy, Illinois, July 16, 1858] 

THE DIFFERENCES 

Four years ago Senator Douglas returned to Chicago from Wash- 
ington and attempted to speak to the people in justification of his 
course in the United States Senate, but was denied a hearing. And, 
indeed, as most of our readers will recollect, when he did make the 
effort he was assailed and driven from the platform. The Chicago 
people would not listen to him; nor did they permit him the right of 
speech at all, so incensed were they against him for his support of the 
Kansas-Nebraska bill. 

Four years have elapsed since then and the city which hunted, 
denounced and assailed the " little giant, " makes the occasion of his 
arrival a source of public rejoicing. In another place we have alluded 
to his triumphant entry into the city on last Friday. Indeed, it is 
conceded that for magnificence and unanimity it excelled any demon- 
stration of the kind ever witnessed west of the Allegheny Mountains. 

. [From the Joliet Signal] 

[Alissouri Republican, St. Louis, July 12, 1858] 

RECEPTION AND SPEECH OF SENATOR DOUGLAS 

Chicago, July 9, 11 p. m. 

Senator Douglas was received here this evening, with great dis- 
play. At one o'clock, a committee of four hundred persons of Chicago 
and the adjoining counties, proceeded to IMichigan City, where they 
met the train, and escorted IMr. Douglas to this city, and, on his arrival, 
he was greeted with vociferous cheering from the people, and the firing 
of cannon. A procession was immediately formed, and IVIr. Douglas 
was conducted to the Tremont House, where he was welcomed in a 
brief speech in behalf of the citizens, by Charles Walker, President 
of the Board of Trade. 

IMr. Lincoln was present and heard Mr. Douglas. Fireworks were 
discharged in several parts of the city. The number of persons in 
attendance is variously estimated at from fifteen to twenty-five thou- 
sand. 

At the Douglas meeting, Lincoln was accorded the 
courtesy of "a good seat," as he said, and, according to 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 39 

his custom four years before in the senatorial campaign, 
he arose the following evening at the same place to reply 
to Douglas. Quite naturally, the Chicago newspapers 
varied in their report of the meeting, according to their 
political complexions. 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, July 12, 1858] 

SPEECH OF HON. ABRAHAM LINCOLN IN EEPLY TO 

SENATOR DOUGLAS 



Enthusiastic Reception of Mr. Lincoln by tlie Republicans of 

Chicago 

The audience assembled to hear Hon. Abraham Lincoln on Satur- 
day evening was in point of numbers, about three-fourths as large as 
that of the previous evening, when Douglas held forth ; and in point of 
enthusiasm, about four times as great. The crowd extended from the 
corner of Lake and Dearborn Streets the whole length of the Tremont 
House, and as on the evening previous, the balconies, windows and 
roofs of the adjoining buildings were filled with attentive spectators — 
ladies and gentlemen. The only advertisement of the meeting con- 
sisted of a notice in the Saturday morning papers, and a few handbills 
distributed during the day. The essential difference in the two dem- 
onstrations was simply that the Lincoln audience was enthusiastically 
for Lincoln, and the Douglas was but qualified in favor of anybody. 
This will be admitted by any fair-minded man who witnessed both 
demonstrations. The Douglas authorities estimated the crowd of 
Friday evening at 30,000 — or something more than the whole male 
adult population of the city. We presume that 12,000 is a liberal 
reckoning for that evening, and that 9,000 would about cover the 
gathering of Saturday night. 

During the progress of Mr. Lincoln's speech a procession of four 
hundred men from the Seventh ward including the German Repub- 
lican Club, arrived on the ground, preceded by a band of music, and 
carrying the Seventh ward banner. They were received with loud 
and continued cheers from the audience. 

Mr. Lincoln was introduced by C. L. Wilson, Esq., and as he made 
his appearance he was greeted with a perfect storm of applause. For 
some moments the enthusiasm continued unabated. At last, when 



40 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

by a wave of his hand partial silence was restored, Mr. Lincoln 
spoke. 

[Chicago Daily Journal, July 12, 1858] 

THE MEETING SATURDAY NIGHT 

At an early hour Saturday evening, the street in front of the Tre- 
mont House began to be filled with an eager crowd. A band of music 
discoursed from the balcony of the Tremont, and rockets blazed in 
different directions until about 8^ o'clock, the gathering in the mean- 
time having been swelled to thousands, presenting literally a sea of 
faces. 

Shortly afterward Mr. Lincoln appeared on the balcony, and was 
greeted with a perfect storm of cheers. 

The feature of the evening, was the arrival of the German Repub- 
lican Club of the Seventh Ward, with a band of music, and their new 
banner. They were vociferously greeted with the wildest kind of 
hurrahs. 

Mr. Lincoln devoted himself to replying to the speech of Senator 
Douglas, and considering the brief time he had for preparation, it 
must be conceded that he did it effectually. 

[Daily Herald, Quiney, 111., July 14, 1858] 
From the Chicago Union 

LINCOLN ON THE STUMP 



Burlesque on the Douglas Ovation 

Yesterday (Saturday) placards appeared on the streets; and a band 
went round in a wagon to announce to the Republicans that Hon. 
Abraham Lincoln would reply to Hon. S. A. Douglas from the Tremont 
House balcony. — Rockets were fired to show the spot where Lincoln 
would talk, and at 8^ o'clock, not less than 3,000 persons of all parties 
had assembled. The lamps marked with the names of States, which 
had been set up for Douglas, were re-lit; but it was remarkable that 
those of the slave States burned very badly, and some one from the 
crowd suggested that a black republican meeting could do with seven- 
teen lamps. Bye-and-Bye Bross came forward and stood between 
two lamps, the light playing on his generous countenance, when there 
arose a shout of "Bross," "Lincoln." A stentorian voice cried, 
" Fellows, Bross will do as well, " when there arose a shout of Bross, 
amidst which the worthy Deacon retired, blushing. He remarked. 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 41 

when behind (Bross is his own Boswell,) " They got their eyes on me, 
did they not?" Band of music plays. — Then there were cries of 
Long John, Little John, George Brown, Smart, etc. After a dis- 
agreeable wait, C. L. Wilson, Esq., of the Journal, introduced Mr. 
Lincoln. Bross went forward and called for cheers, when the crowd 
cried out " Lincoln, stand where Bross is," and he did. We shall not 
attempt to give Mr. Lincoln's speech. It was a rambling affair. Mr. 
L. thought he was mentioned in such a way that he could not refuse 
to reply to him. He commenced to read from the Senator's speech 
[cries of put on your specs]. 

He argued against the allegation of Judge Douglas that an alliance 
existed between the Republicans and the National Democrats. — [A 
rocket went off.] He denied it. [The audience cheered instead of 
groaning — and another rocket.] Douglas is not a live lion but a Rus- 
sian rugged bear. [Bross, — "splendid;" Shuman of the Journal, 
"That's argument. "] He objected to being slain. [Small boy from 
the crowd, " Don't. "] Let him remember the allies took Sebastopol. 
[Shuman — That's profound.] He confessed he rather liked the dis- 
affection of the Buchanan Democracy, because it would divide the 
party. But he had never paid to them. [Cries of " No, sir. "] He 
wanted to know what had become of squatter sovereignty. [A voice 
— "Throw back your ears Douglas will swallow you whole. " Voices 
— " Three cheers for James Buchanan. "] He would read them some- 
thing from Douglas. — [Cries of "do" and others of "do, and we'll 
go. " Bross catches hold of Lincoln's farmer satin coat and tears it 
" Don't Lincoln, don't read it. "] He thought Douglas did right in 
opposing Lecompton, because all the Republicans voted with him. 
He did not leave them to vote against it. [A voice — No, they stuck 
to him pretty well.] Who defeated Lecompton — was it Judge 
Douglas! [Voices — Yes.] He furnished three votes, and the Black 
Republicans twenty against it. Now, who did it. — [Voices — Douglas] 
He'd put the proposition in a different way. [Voices — You'd better.] 
The Republican party would have defeated Lecompton without 
Douglas. [A voice — Why did not they come out first?] He reiter- 
ated his views upon the matter of the ultimate extinction of slavery. 
The speaker attempted a reply to Democratic principles, amid some 
applause, and some spicy interruptions. We left when Deacon Bross 
announced that the Seventh Ward are coming. Band played, 
Hocklets fizzled, and we mizzled. 



42 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

[Illinois Journal, Springfield, July 12, 1858] 

LINCOLN'S REPLY TO DOUGLAS 

We today occupy considerable of our space with the speech of Hon. 
Abraham Lincoln, in reply to Senator Douglas' speech of Friday even- 
ing The war has begun. The first fire has been exchanged 

by the two contestants. Those who will read the speech we publish 
today, will perceive that the Little Giant is already wounded in several 
vital parts. In sound, manly argument, Lincoln is too much for 
him. While the former shakes his black locks vain-gloriously and 
explodes in mere fustian of sound and smoke, the latter quietly unas- 
sumingly but effectually drives home argument after argument, heavy 
as cannon balls, and sharp as two-edged swords, until his adversary is 
so thoroughly riddled, cut up and " used up, " that in the view of dis- 
criminating men, nothing remains of him but a ghostly appearance, 

[Cincinnati, Ohio, Commercial, July 12, 1858] 

SENATOR DOUGLAS IN CHICAGO 

We devote much space in our news colums to the reproduction of 
reports in the Chicago papers of the reception of Senator Douglas in 
that city Friday last, and his speech on that occasion. His compet- 
itor, Hon. Abram Lincoln, sat near him, marked attentively all he 
said, and replied to him from the same place the following evening. 
We have not yet a report of IVIr. Lincoln's remarks. The speech of 
Douglas was able and bold, and it appears from some things said of 
Lincoln, that his personal relations with that gentleman are friendly, 
— The indications are that the political campaign in Illinois will be 
quite exciting and the contest close, and that Douglas will succeed 
in being re-elected to the U. S. Senate, 

[Louisville Democrat, LouisviUe, Ky., September 5, 1858] 

The debate in Illinois, between Lincoln and Douglas, is the ablest 
and the most important that has ever taken place in any of the States, 
on the great question which has so long agitated the country, elected 
and defeated Presidential candidates, built up and broken down par- 
ties. It is the opening of the question for 1860, There the real 
battle has begun, by broadsides too, from the heaviest artillery. 
Douglas is matchless in debate, and stands upon the only national 
platform. Lincoln is able, and does full justice to the bad cause he 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 43 

advocates. He is the champion of anti-slavery in the North. It is 
the one idea that has brought him forward as the candidate of his 

party 

[Daily Whig, Quiney, 111., July 21, 1858] 

PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES 

As to the Southern Democratic candidates, the leading men are 
Senator Hunter and Gov. Wise of Virginia, the former representing 
Administration, the latter anti-Administration views on the Kansas 
question. Senator Slidell, of Louisiana, Secretary Floyd, of Virginia, 
and Hon. Alexander H. Stephens, of Georgia, are also spoken of. 

The Times postpones the chances of Senator Douglas indefinitely, 
on account of his quarrel with the administration, and the fact that he 
is from a Northern State, two circumstances which render his nomina- 
tion entirely out of the question. 

Among the Republican candidates, the Times places the name of 
Col. Fremont first on the list; next Mr. Seward, followed by Mr. Critten- 
den, Gov. Banks, of Mass., Gov. Chase, of Ohio, and Judge McLean. 

From its beginning the Illinois campaign attracted 
widespread attention. It meant more than state issues 
and state results. The fate of "squatter sovereignty," 
the triumph or defeat of the administration, the presiden- 
tial nominations to be made in the next national conven- 
tions, indeed, the future of the Union was felt to depend 
in no small degree upon the outcome of these debates. 
Eastern newspapers at once dispatched special reporters 
to the scene and they outlined the situation for their 
readers. 

[New York Semi-Weekly Post, August 18, 1858] 

POLITICS IN ILLINOIS 



Abe Lincoln.— Doug-las Eejoicing* over Blair's Defeat.— Senator 

Trumbull's Speecli 

[From our special correspondent] 

Chicago, III., August 13, 1858 

The interest in politics increases here as the campaign progresses. 

Illinois is regarded as the battle-ground of the year, and the results of 



44 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

this contest are held to be of the highest importance to the wellfare of 
the country and the success of the great contending parties. The 
Repubhcan Convention of June 16, after placing a state ticket in nom- 
ination, named as its choice for United States senator to succeed Mr. 
Douglas, Mr. Lincoln, of Springfield. This expression met at once the 
approval of the Republicans of the state. Mr. Lincoln was regarded 
as the man for the place. A native of Kentucky, where he belonged 
to the class of "poor whites," he came early to Illinois. Poor unfriend- 
ed, uneducated, a day-laborer, he has distanced all these disadvan- 
tages, and in the profession of the law he has risen steadily to a 
competence, and to the position of an intelligent, shrewd and well 
balanced man. Familiarly known as " Long Abe, " he is a popular 
speaker, and a cautious, thoughtful politician, capable of taking 
a high position as a statesman and legislator. His nomination was 
proof that the Republicans of Illinois were determined in their hos- 
tility to Mr. Douglas, and that no latter-day conversion of his, how- 
ever luminous it might appear to some eastern eyes, could blind them 
to the fact that in him were embodied the false and fatal principles 
against which they were organized. They had grown mighty in their 
opposition to Douglas, and in his defeat they were certain of an en- 
larged and a well-established party. Even' Mr. Douglas's anti- 
Lecomptonism could not excuse or palliate his past errors ; nor did it 
incline them in the least degree to sympathize with him. Save in 
this one respect, he was, as ever, the firm upholder of Dred Scottism, 
and the constant apologist and defender of the Federal Administra- 
tion and the measures which it urged upon an unwilling country. 
The people of Illinois felt certain that they knew best the sentiment 
of their state, and they repudiated the counsels of those who suggested 
that Douglas was a good-enough Republican, and that he might be 
used to break down the democratic party here and in the northwest. 
The present attitude of Mr. Douglas, so entirely consistent with his 
antecedents, is good evidence that the Republicans in Illinois did 
well to contemn the time-serving and dangerous suggestions that 
emanated from Washington and New York, and which had voice in 
many influential journals at the East. Mr. Douglas, in all his 
speeches, claims to be a democrat, and demands the support of 
democrats in his assault upon Republicanism. The "Little Giant" is 
unchanged in no respect; and as the canvass grows warmer, the 
breech widens, and his actual position becomes more clearly defined. 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 45 

He is of other material, altogether, than that which makes Republi- 
eanism. He is still an out-and-out pro-slavery man. In one of his 
recent speeches he stopped to read the dispatch announcing Blair's 
defeat in St. Louis, as the overthrow of " negro equality " and all that 
sort of stuff that forms the staple of democratic rhetoric. 

It is a foregone conclusion, therefore, that under no circumstances 
can the Republicans of Illinois show any favor to Mr. Douglas. In 
fighting him, they fight democracy in one of its worst forms. It seems 
to be equally a conclusion that the administration democrats of Illi- 
nois are utterly hostile to Douglas. The democratic split, while widen- 
ing ev-ery day, is as marked and bitter as in the battle of the Shells. 
" Danite " and Douglasite are names of hostility as deep as that once 
existing between Hard and Soft. Perhaps another truce at Charles- 
ton, as hollow as that at Cincinnati, may be needed to " harmonize " 
things. Senator Slidell has been here to look on, perhaps to "fix" 
matters. Stephens of Georgia is here now, ostensibly to have his 
portrait painted by Healy, but really to see what can be done to ad- 
just these difficulties. The prospect is reported to be not flattering. 
The Buchanan ,men propose to carry their anti-Douglas feeling even to 
the least important county nominations. The democracy must 
choose whom they will serve, and come out flat-footed for the Post- 
office, or for the Douglas exegesis of popular sovereignty. 

Douglas is working like a lion. He is stumping the state, every- 
where present, and everywhere appealing to his old lieges to stand by 
him. Never did feudal baron fight more desperately against the 
common superior of himself and his retainers. In the Egypt of South- 
ern Illinois the senator has been always strong, but the ties that 
bound him to the Egyptians are melting before the incessant charges 
that he is no democrat. That cry is fatal to the faith of many of his 
onee most reliable friends. Democracy must be done, though 
Douglas falls. 

Lincoln, too, is actively engaged. His senatorial nomination has 
sent him to the field, and he is working with an energy and zeal which 
counterbalance the spirit and dogged resolution of his opponent. Lin- 
coln is battling for the right, and Douglas is desperately struggling to 
save himself from utter political ruin. He is losing strength daily, 
while Lincoln is surely gaining upon him. You will observe as a new 
feature, even in western politics, that Mr. Lincoln has a State Con- 
vention nomination for the Senate, and that he is stumping the state 



46 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

for his party, while the legislature to be elected is to have the responsi- 
bility of electing the senator. But with this endorsement, no Repub- 
lican member of the state legislature would dare to bolt the significant 
expression of the Springfield Convention. Mr. Douglas, on the other 
hand, has no nomination. Returning home, he found Mr. Lincoln 
prepared, and at once he mounted the platform and opened upon 
him. He is stumping for himself, and trying to vindicate his course 
to the people at large on the one hand, and to the administration 
scoffers on the other. 

[New York Times, July 16, 1858] 

SENATORIAL CONTEST IN ILLINOIS 

The Republican candidate for United States Senator, the Hon. 
Abraham Lincoln, was present on Saturday evening when Mr. Douglas 
made his address published in Tuesday's Times to the crowd assembled 
in honor of his arrival in Chicago. On Monday evening Mr. Lincoln 
replied to his distinguished competitor, and we give his speech in full 
this morning. He, too, received an enthusiastic welcome and the 
war between the two champions was fitly inaugurated in the chief 

city of Illinois Until November, therefore, the contest will 

go on with increasing vigor. Mr Douglas has an undertaking on 
hand which will task his utmost powers, and he is not the man to 
flinch from a contest because the odds are against him, 

[New York Herald, July, 27, 1858] 

RECEPTION OF LINCOLN 

On Monday night there was a large gathering in the legislative hall 
of the Capitol to hear the Honorable Abraham Lincoln in reply to Mr. 
Douglas. Mr. Lincoln, though not perhaps so well calculated for a 
leader as Senator Douglas, is a remarkably able man. In addition to 
his talents as a lawyer, he has many personal qualities which have 
endeared him to the people of Illinois, and will be beyond all question 
the strongest opponent that could be found in the State to oppose 
Mr. Douglas. 

It is, we believe somewhat of an anomaly for a Senator of the Uni- 
ted States to be stumping the State, and another who wishes to be 
Senator following in his wake, yet thus it is at the present time in 
Illinois, and none can have heard either these gentlemen speak with- 
out being impressed and highly gratified with the fact that whenever 
reference is made by either to the other, it is in the kindest, most 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 47 

courteous and dignified manner. The approaching political contest 
between Senator Douglas and Mr. Lincoln will be one of the severest 
we have had in the State, but that it will result in the reelection of 
Douglas there appears to be at present very little doubt. 

[New York Daily Tribune, July 16, 1858] 

The admirable and thoroughly Republican speech of Mr. Lincoln 
in reply to Judge Douglas, published in our last, seemed to require no 
comment; yet a single remark with reference to the origin and attitude 
of the rival canvassers may not be out of place. Judge Douglas, who 
regards Slavery as an affair of climate and latitude, is a native of Free 
Vermont ; Mr. Lincoln, who esteems Slavery a National evil, and hopes 
that our Union may one day be all Free, was born and reared in slave- 
holding Kentucky. These gentlemen would seem respectively to 
have "conquered their prejudices" founded in early impressions. 
We shall watch with interest the progress of their canvass. 

[Philadelphia North American, August 25, 1858] 

SENATOR DOUGLAS 

Senator Douglas, little giant though he be, can hardly fail to suffer 

somewhat from the wear and tear of the life he leads The 

adjournment of Congress brings no peace to the Senator from Illinois 
Strong as he was in that state, — holding as he thought he did, the 
democratic party at home in his hand — he finds that he has lost ground 
there. The Administration has been at work with all the power which 
its patronage and influence gives it to prevent the re-election of Mr. 
Douglas to the Senate. And he is obliged to go to work again, this 
time with his coat off, stumping the State and addressing the people, 
with the thermometer ranging somewhere between 96 and 100 in 
the shade. And not only this, while the democracy are very forgetful 
of their old comrade and ungrateful for the services he has so frequent- 
ly done them in past years, the republicans, generally speaking have 
not a particle of faith in Mr. Douglas' professions. He has not their 
confidence and is plainly unable to win them to his support. Mr. 
Lincoln, the republican candidate, follows him wherever he addresses 
the people, and has the best of the argument. ... As it is, he lost his 
temper and in reply to some remarks of Mr. Trumbull made at a 
public meeting at Chicago, indulged in language which he will prob- 
ably be ashamed to read in print. 



48 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

The favorable manner in which Douglas' speech was 
received by the Democrats in the city of Chicago was a 
disappointment to the supporters of Buchanan in his con- 
test with Douglas and immediate steps were taken to curb 
the latter 's popularity in Illinois. The administration 
machinery was put in motion and, before many days had 
passed, lists of proscribed postmasters and of other federal 
employees favorable to Douglas began to appear in the 
newspapers. The Union, the administration organ in 
Washington, devoted columns of space to show why the 
Democrats of Illinois should not support Douglas, and 
urged them to vote for Judge Breese, who was faint- 
heartedly put forward in opposition to the Little Giant. 
Senator Trumbull, bound to support Lincoln because of 
his sacrifice four years before, as well as by party ties and 
natural hostility toward Douglas, took the stump in a 
series of abusive attacks on Douglas, which drew from 
the latter equally caustic and offensive rejoinders. With- 
out a formal nomination or indorsement by the people 
of Illinois, ridiculed as a "my-party" candidate, and 
facing the loss of the federal patronage, Douglas entered 
upon the greatest of his many battles for supremacy — a 
contest surpassing that waged two years later for the 
presidency, when he was in a hopeless situation from the 
beginning of the campaign. Alone and unaided, he faced 
in the lists Trumbull and Lincoln, the best debators 
afforded by the Republicans in the West, and probably 
equaled only by Seward in the East. 

[Daily Whig, Quincy, 111., June 23, 1858] 

DOUGLAS TO TAKE THE STUMP 

Judge Douglas has left the Democratic party, or the party has left 
him. He opposed the Administration in its darling measure to en- 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 49 

slave Kansas — and there is no forgiveness for him. He sees that his 
fate is sealed ; but he is determined to die hard. Before he retires from 
the field, a defeated and disappointed man, he will give the " Nation- 
als " such stabs as will forever finish the party in this State. He has 
already turned State's evidence against them — as the greatest rogues 
always do — and show up their rascalities. We shall have more of it 
this fall; and we would advise the Buchaneers to be prepared for a 
skinning. 

[Daily Herald, Quincy, 111., July 20, 1858] 

SENATOR DOUGLAS 

His campaign through this state will pretty effectually destroy the hopes of 
the Republican party; and Abe Lincoln, who compared himself to a "living 
dog" and Douglas to a "dead lion" will rapidly discover that instead of 
"living" he is one of the smallest of defunct puppies. He measures strength 
with Douglas! His comparison in some degrees was true — it is very much 
like a puppy-dog fighting a Uon. — Pittsfield Democrat. 

[Evening Post, New York, July 13, 1858] 

THE CANVASS IN ILLINOIS 

Illinois is just now the theatre of the most momentous political 
contest, whether we consider the eminence of the contestants or the 
consequences which may result from it, that has occured in this 
country in any state canvass since the defeat of Silas Wright for 
Governor in 1846. Nor are the contestants dissimilar. Both were 
regarded by their friends as material from which Presidents should 
be made; both were victims of treachery at Washington, and both 
were betrayed for venturing to propose a limit to the exactions of the 
nuUifiers and disunionists 

One week after his triumphant reception at Chicago, 
Douglas began a tour of the state which was to continue 
during the four summer months. He made elaborate 
preparations for the beginning of the journey, traveUng 
in a special train of coaches which included a flat car upon 
which was mounted a small cannon. The opposition 
press did not fail to ridicule the novel method of firing 
salutes as the train drew near a station instead of running 
the risk of not receiving a welcoming salute from the 



50 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

inhabitants of the city being approached, "Douglas' 
powder" suffered a run of pleasantries; kegs of powder 
tagged for Douglas were reported seen at various stations ; 
and Republican papers circulated the story that Douglas 
was obliged to mortgage his Chicago home and even then 
to solicit funds in New York to carry on the expensive 
campaign. On the other hand, the Democratic press 
praised his action in transferring to the new University 
of Chicago the ground on which its buildings stood as the 
deed of a noble man of means. The first important stop 
made by the special train was at Bloomington. 

[Bloomington, III., Pantagraph, July 17, 1858] 

DOUGLAS AT BLOOMINGTON 

Hon. Stephen A. Douglas arrived in this city at half past three 
o'clock yesterday afternoon. The train on which he arrived was 
tastefully decorated with flags and on each side of the baggage car 
were the words " S. A. Douglas, the Champion of Popular Sovereign- 
ty. " About a thousand persons — more than one half of whom were 
Republicans — witnessed Judge D's arrival. Just before the cars 
reached the depot Pullen's Brass Band commenced playing "Hail 
Columbia" and when the cars stopped, the Bloomington Guards 
commenced firing a national salute of thirty-two guns. Judge Doug- 
las was in the hindmost passenger car — an open car, upon which was 
placed a brass sixpounder, bringing up the rear. 

At seven o'clock in the evening the Court House bell rang and 
Judge Douglas escorted by the Guards, the Brass Band and a goodly 
number of Democrats, proceeded to the public square. He was 
welcomed by Dr. Roe, who spoke for about five minutes and con- 
cluded by introducing Judge Douglas. 

The Judge commenced speaking at half past seven, and concluded 
at a quarter before ten. His speech did not differ materially from the 
one made by him in Chicago on the evening of the ninth. 

He spoke to an audience of about two thousand persons. His 
Democratic listeners were highly pleased with his speech. They 
viewed it as a masterly effort — and we are willing to admit that the 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 51 

Judge did,|'on the whole, make a very good speech in a very bad 
cause. 

As soon as Judge Douglas retired, loud calls were made for Hon, 
Abraham Lincoln. Mr. Lincoln held back for a Httle while, but the 
crowd finally succeeded in inducing him to come upon the stand. He 
wasjreceived with three rousing cheers much louder than those given 
to Judge Douglas. He remarked that he appeared before the audience 
for the purpose of saying that he would take an early opportunity to 
give[his views to the citizens of this place regarding the matters spoken 
of in Judge Douglas' speech. — "This meeting," said Mr. Lincoln, 
" was called by the friends of Judge Douglas, and it would be improper 
for me to address it. " Mr. Lincoln then retired amid loud cheering. 

Leaving Bloomington, the senatorial train proceeded to 
the real objective point — Springfield, the state capital, the 
home of Lincoln, and a stronghold of Douglas supporters. 
Here the senator addressed an enormous gathering of 
people in a grove adjacent to the city. He explained his 
objections to the Lecompton constitution, asserting that 
it did not represent the free will of the whole people of 
Kansas, although he did not object to its pro-slavery 
tendency. Turning his attention to Lincoln, he pro- 
nounced his attitude toward the non-extension of slavery 
as virtually a war upon that institution and ridiculed his 
proposition to get a new law from Congress which would 
undo the Dred Scott decision. He bore especially hard 
on Lincoln's defense of the black man and charged that 
he desired black and white to be social equals. 

[Illinois' State' Register, Springfield, July 19, 1858] 

SENATOR DOUGLAS AT THE CAPITAL 



His Journey from Chicag-o.— Enthusiastic Receptions.— Immense 
Assemblag-es of the People 



WILLIAMSVILLE 



Here the train with Senator Douglas was met, — the rain pouring 
down in torrents the while. The cannon thimdered welcome for 



U. OF ILL ua "^"''"'' ""^ 



52 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

welcome — the shouts of the passengers joined in sweUing the uproari- 
ous greeting; the several bands struck up stirring airs, and amid the 
storm, of rain, shouts, guns and music, the trains were joined and 
sped southward. When within two miles of Springfield the cannon, 
at minute intervals, announced the coming of our great guest. At 
precisely three o'clock the train arrived. 

AT SPRINGFIELD 

According to the arrangements the train stopped beside the beauti- 
ful grove of Mr. Edwards, on the northern boundary of the cit)^, where, 
notwithstanding the previous drenching rain, thousands of people 
were awaiting the arrival of the distinguished visitor. The cannon 
on the cars boomed in response to cannon on the grounds, barely 
equalled in their thunders by the hurras of the crowd. The grove was 
gaily decorated with national flags, wdth significant mottoes, the whole 
forming a scene which filled the heart of every democrat present with 
pride — Conspicuous among these banners we will note was one very 
large pennant, with " Douglas, " in broad letters upon its folds, got up 
by the Springfield employees of the work shops of the Chicago and 
St. Louis Road. Upon the stoppage of the train the committee of 
reception, preceded by the "Capital Guards" and the capital band, 
escorted Mr. Douglas to the stand, where Mr. B. S. Edwards wel- 
comed him in a neat address, which welcome was reiterated by the 
hearty cheers of the large assemblage which he represented. To this 
Senator Douglas responded. We give both the address and reply in 
today's paper. 

Senator Douglas' speech was received as it justly deserved, the 
reader will admit. Cheer upon cheer responded to his many happy 
points and forcible argumentation. 

The crowd upon the ground numbered between five and six thou- 
and. The drenching rain which immediately preceded the arrival of 
the train, and which made the grounds muddy and uncomfortable, 
kept away as many more, who were present in the city to participate 
in the reception. Especially is it to be regretted, that the committee's 
arrangements for the accommodation of the ladies were rendered 
unavailable on account of the rain, but notwithstanding, there were 
hundreds of them present in carriages, and many on foot, in mud 
joining in the cheering welcome to our distinguished guest. 

The counties immediately around us furnished large delegations. 



THE SENATORIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1858 53 

and hundreds were here from remote parts of the state. From the 
south a train of twelve cars were filled with people from Madison, 
Macoupin, Jersey, Greene, Montgomery, St. Claire, Monroe and other 
counties — one of these cars bearing a conspicuous pledge, in bold 
lettering — "Madison for Douglas!" — Another, "Jersey all right for 
Douglas!" — with a sixpounder on a platform car in the rear, this 
train came thundering into town at noon. 

From the east a train, decorated with national banners, bearing 
delegations from the counties along the line of the G. W. Road, 
Macon, Piatt, Champaign, &c., arrived at 12, and simultaneously, 
from the west, another train of ten cars, with delegations from Morgan, 
Scott, and Pike, covered with the stars and stripes, and a cannon to 
tell their coming, arrived. 

From our own county, notwithstanding the busy time of our farm- 
ers, and the rainy dsij, the people poured into town from all direc- 
tions — The town was alive with the masses, who wanted to see and to 
welcome Douglas. From the state house flag-staff streamed the 
national flag across the streets around the square hung immense 
banners, many of the buildings fronting the square were tastefully 
ornamented with flags, interspersed with mottoes, all speaking the 
one idea — " welcome to Douglas. " 

SPEECH OF SENATOR DOUGLAS 

Mr. Edwards having introduced Senator Douglas to the audience, 
Senator Douglas said: 

" I will not recur to the scenes which took place all over this country 
in 1854 when that Nebraska bill passed. I could then travel from 
Boston to Chicago by the light of my own effigies, in consequence of 
having stood up for it. [" It did not hurt you. " " Hurra for Douglas," 
etc.] I leave it to you to say how I met that storm, and whether I 
quailed under it : [" never, " " no "] whether I did not 'face the music,' 
justify the principle and pledge my life to carry it out. " [" You did, " 
and three cheers.]. . . . 

Meanwhile Lincoln had returned to Springfield and 
although he was not present at the Douglas meeting in the 
afternoon, he took advantage of the presence of many 

—3 



54 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

strangers in the city to address the people at a pubHc 
meeting at the State House in the evening. He devoted 
the speech largely to repelling the charges made by 
Douglas against him of disunion sentiment, forcible resis- 
tance to the Dred Scott decision, and a desire for negro 
equality. He also renewed his charge that the Dred 
Scott decision was a conspiracy to which Douglas was a 
party. Douglas was not present at the meeting, having 
already departed on his tour of the state. In this irreg- 
ular manner began a campaign, which was speedily turned 
into a series of formal debates through a challenge sent 
by Lincoln to Douglas. 



CHAPTER III 

THE CHALLENGE 

After conferring with the Democratic Committee at 
Springfield, Douglas gave out a list of his appointments 
covering July and a large part of August, ending with 
Ottawa, August 21. Lincoln's friends also prepared a list 
of Republican meetings, in some cases coinciding with the 
Democratic dates but generally following them a day later. 
In his Springfield speech, Lincoln distinctly stated that he 
was not present when Douglas made his speech in the 
grove during the afternoon and had no intention of mak- 
ing his remarks a reply. The previous day at Bloomington 
he refused to heed the calls of the crowd for a reply at the 
close of a Douglas meeting. Nevertheless, soon after the 
appointed meetings began, the Douglas papers made com- 
plaint that Lincoln was transgressing the ethics of cam- 
paigning by following their candidate and taking advan- 
tage of his crowds. 

[Illinois State Journal, Spi'ingfield, July 23, 1858] 

The Chicago Times launches out into a personal attack upon Mr. 
Lincoln for presuming to be present when Mr. Douglas speaks. One 
would think from this that Mr. Douglas has a patent right to audiences 
in Illinois. We hope that Mr. Lincoln will continue to follow up 
Senator Douglas with a sharp stick, even if it does make his organ 
howl with rage. 

[Journal and Courier, Lowell, Mass., August 24, 1858] 

Geneseo, III., August 18, 1858 
Douglas and Lincoln are stumping the state and a right merry time 
they have of it; wherever the Little Giant happens to be, Abe is sure to 
turn up and be a thorn in his side. X. 

55 



56 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

[Chicago Times, July 30, 1858] 

AN AUDIENCE WANTED 

It was Japhet, we believe, whose adventures in search of his father, 
furnished the novelist with the plot of a popular romance. There are 
but few of our readers who have not known, or at least heard of 
physicians unable, even in the midst of sickness, to obtain patients, 
lawyers unable to obtain clients, and actors unable to draw houses. 
But we venture to say that never before was there heard of in any 
political canvass in Illinois, of a candidate unable to obtain an au- 
dience to hear him ! But such is the fact. Abe Lincoln, the candidate 
of all the Republicans, wants an audience. He came up to Chicago, 
and, taking advantage of the enthusiasm of Douglas' reception, made a 
speech here; he went to Bloomington, and, at the Douglas meeting, 
advertised himself for a future occasion; at Springfield he distributed 
handbills at the Douglas meeting imploring the people to hear him. 
The Springfield attempt was a failure. He came to Chicago, and 
declared it impossible for him to get the people to turn out to hear 
him, and then it was resolved to try and get him a chance to speak 
to the crowds drawn out to meet and welcome Douglas. That pro- 
position was partially declined and another substituted; but yet the 
cringing, crawling creature is hanging at the outskirts of Douglas' 
meetings, begging the people to come and hear him. At Clinton he 
rose up at the Democratic meeting, and announced his intention to 

speak at night, but only 250 persons could be induced to attend 
his meeting. 

He went yesterday to Monticello in Douglas' train; poor, desperate 
creature, he wants an audience; poor unhappy mortal, the people 
won't turn out to hear him, and he must do something, even if that 
something is mean, sneaking and disreputable! 

We have a suggestion to make to Mr. Judd — the next friend of 
Lincoln. There are two very good circuses and menageries traveling 
through the State; these exhibitions always draw good crowds at 
country towns. Mr. Judd, in behalf of his candidate, at a reasonable 
expense, might make arrangements with the managers of these exhibi- 
tions to include a speech from Lincoln in their performances. In this 
way Lincoln could get good audiences, and his friends be relieved from 
the mortification they all feel at his present humiliating position. 

[Chicago Journal, July 30, 1858] 

DOUGLAS AND LINCOLN 

The Times growls because Mr. Lincoln made a speech at Clinton, 
at night, in reply to that of Senator Douglas, delivered in the after- 
noon, and that he "went to Monticello in Douglas' train". 



THE CHALLENGE 57 

We suppose Douglas owns neither the railroad trains he travels on, 
nor the people whom he addresses. We hope Mr. Lincoln will answer 
Senator Douglas at every point. If he will not invite him to address 
the same audiences, Lincoln will have the ''closing argument" to 
meetings of his own. 

According to authority quoted in the Senator's Springfield speech, 
" there is no law against it. " 

[Peoria, Illinois, correspondence to the Philadelphia Press, August 4, 1858] 
Lincoln, unable to gather a crowd himself, follows up Douglas and 
attempts to reply ; but they are mere attempts. His hearers soon be- 
come satisfied and by the time he is done begging for a seat in the 
Senate he finds himself minus an audience. 

[Illinois State Register, September 25, 1858] 

"WHO FURNISHES THE AUDIENCES f 

Under this caption the Chicago Press and Tribune, of the 23d inst., 
proceeds to argue that at the joint discussions between Douglas and 
Lincoln thus far, the friends of the latter have been largely in the 
ascendant — hence Mr. Lincoln draws the greatest crowds. This 
conclusion is characteristic of the logical proclivities of that paper, 
and only lacks one feature — truth. 

If this assertion is true, why then does Mr. Lincoln persist in fol- 
lowing up Judge Douglas for the ostensible purpose of taking advan- 
tage of the large audiences assembled to hear him? For instance 
look at his last demonstration at Sullivan, where, through his uncourt- 
eous behavior, a riot was almost precipitated. 

The fact is, Mr. Lincoln can't draw large crowds — the sympathy of 
the people is not with him — consequently he resorts to this highly dis- 
reputable course to make a show. The Chicago organ cannot palm 
off such logic upon the people of Illinois. 

[New York Herald, August 3, 1858] 

DOUGLAS AND LINCOLN ON THE STUMP 

The Chicago Times states that Douglas and Lincoln met on the 
27 ult. at Clinton. The former spoke for three hours, and the latter 
replied at an evening meeting. The Times indulges in a tirade 
against Mr. Lincoln, an extract from which will serve to indicate 
the bitterness of feeling that enters into this contest: 

Lincoln was present during the delivery of the speech, sitting immediately 
in front of Senator Douglas, but rendered invisible from the stand by a gentle- 



58 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

man in green goggles, whom he used as a shield and cover. After Senator 
Douglas had concluded, and the cheers which greeted him ceased, green 
goggles rose and proposed three cheers for Lincoln, which were given by about 
ten men who stood immediately around him. Mr. Lincoln then gradually 
lengthened out his long, lank proportions until he stood upon his feet, and 
with a desperate attempt at looking pleasant, said that he would not take 
advantage of Judge Douglas' crowd, but would address "sich" as liked to 
hear him in the evening at the Court House. Having made this announce- 
ment in a tone and with an air of a perfect " L'riah Heep, " pleading his humil- 
itj', and asking for forgiveness of Heaven for his enemies, he stood washing 
his hands with invisible soap in imperceptible water, until his friends, seeing 
that his mind was wandering, took him in charge, and bundled him off the 
ground 

Mr. Lincoln's course in following Senator Douglas is condemned 
here even by his friends. He explains it by saying that he challenged 
Judge Douglas to meet the people and address them together, which 
challenge had not been accepted. The unfairness and untruth of this 
statement made in Chicago 3^ou who have seen the correspondence 
know. 

Douglas was devoting a large share of attention in these 
speeches to his fellow-senator, Trumbull, who had charged 
Douglas with a corrupt bargain in espousing the repeal of 
the Missouri Compromise measure. Strong language was 
used by each and rumors of a personal encounter likely to 
follow between the two men were common. Trumbull's 
speeches were widely quoted in the eastern press as " repre- 
sentative Republican doctrines." The Boston Daily 
Traveler headed its campaign letter, " Illinois, Trumbull 
and Douglas. " Lincoln saw that he was likely to be 
ignored if Trumbull were permitted to monopolize the 
attention of Douglas and in that case his political chances 
would be jeopardized. Manifestly his only course was to 
challenge Douglas to a series of set debates in which the 
political issues of the day would replace the personal 
matters at stake between Douglas and Trumbull. After 
consulting with representative Republicans of the State, 
Lincoln sent the following letter to Douglas: 



THE CHALLENGE 59 

Chicago, III., July 24, 1858 
Hon. S. A. Douglas. 

My dear Sir : Will it be agreeable to you to make an arrangement 

for you and myself to divide time, and address the same audiences the 

present canvass? Mr. Judd,^ who will hand you this, is authorized 

to receive 5-our answer; and, if agreeable to you, to enter into the 

terms of such agreement. Your obedient servant, 

A. Lincoln 

The same day Douglas replied to Lincoln: 

Chicago, July 24, 1858 
Hon. A. Lincoln. 

Dear Sir : Your note of this date, in which you inquire if it would 
be agreeable to me to make an arrangement to divide the time and 
address the same audiences during the present canvass, was handed to 
me by Mr. Judd. Recent events have interposed difficulties in the 
way of such an arrangement. 

I went to Springfield last week for the purpose of conferring with 
the Democratic State Central Committee upon the mode of conducting 
the canvass, and with them, and under their advice, made a list of 
appointments covering the entire period until late in October. The 
people of the several localities have been notified of the times and 
places of the meetings. Those appointments have all been made for 
Democratic meetings, and arrangements have been made by which 
the Democratic candidates for Congress, for the Legislature, and 
other offices, will be present and address the people. It is e\-ident, 
therefore, that these various candidates, in connection with myself, 
wiU occupy the whole time of the day and evening, and leave no 
opportunity for other speeches. 

Besides, there is another consideration which should be kept in 
mind. It has been suggested recently that an arrangement had been 
made to bring out a third candidate for the United States Senate, who, 
with yourself, should canvass the State in opposition to me, with no 
other purpose than to insure my defeat, by dividing the Democratic 
party for your benefit. If I should make this arrangement with you, 
it is more than probable that this other candidate, who has a common 
object with you, would desire to become a part}* to it, and claim the 
right to speak from the same stand; so that he and you, in concert, 
might be able to take the opening and closing speech in every case. 

^Norman B. Judd (1815-78), a prominent Chicago attorney, was at this time chairman of the 
Republican State Central Committee. 



60 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

I cannot refrain from expressing my surprise, if it was your original 
intention to invite such an arrangement, that you should have waited 
until after I had made my appointments, inasmuch as we were both 
here in Chicago together for several days after my arrival, and again 
at Bloomington, Atlanta, Lincoln, and Springfield, where it was well 
known I went for the purpose of consulting with State Central 
Committee, and agreeing upon the plan of the campaign. 

While, under these circumstances, I do not feel at liberty to make 
any arrangement which would deprive the Democratic candidates for 
Congress, State offices, and the Legislature, from participating in the 
discussion at the various meetings designated by the Democratic State 
Central Committee, I will, in order to accommodate you as far as it is 
in my power to do so, take the responsibility of making an arrange- 
ment with you for a discussion between us at one prominent point in 
each Congressional District in the State, except the second and sixth 
districts, where we have both spoken,' and in each of which cases you 
had the concluding speech. If agreeable to you, I will indicate the 
following places as those most suitable in the several Congressional 
Districts at which we should speak, to wit : Freeport, Ottawa, Gales- 
burg, Quincy, Alton, Jonesboro, and Charleston. I will confer with 
you at the earliest convenient opportunity in regard to the mode of 
conducting the debate, the times of meeting at the several places, 
subject to the condition that where appointments have already been 
made by the Democratic State Central Committee at any of those 
places, I must insist upon you meeting me at the times specified. 

Very respectfully, your most obedient servant, 

S. A. Douglas 

This correspondence was at once given to the press and 
excited a variety of comment. 

[Chicago Daily Journal, July 27, 1858] 

LINCOLN'S CHALLENGE TO DOUGLAS 

Below will be found the challenge of Mr. Lincoln to Mr. Douglas, 
and the reply of the latter. 

We do not think it argues very well for the courage of the Senator 
that he evades the challenge in the manner he does, nor much for his 
courtesy when asked to confer with the Chairman of the Republican 

'Chicago was in the second congressional district and Springfield was in the sixth. See the map 
in this volume. 



THE CHALLENGE 61 

State Central Committee in regard to the times and places, that he 
should himself proceed to designate seven places where Mr. Lincoln 
must meet him, if at all. 

The friends of Senator Douglas claim that Mr. Lincoln is no match 
for him, before the people. Every canvass for the last twenty years 
has found these two champions of their respective parties side by side 
with each other, and often addressing the same audience, and Mr. 
Lincoln never asked any favor of his adversary. He does not now. If 
Mr. Douglas really felt his superiority, those who know him will be 
slow to believe that he would not take advantage of it. He, however, 
shows the white feather, and, like a trembling Felix skulks behind the 
appointments of the emasculate Democratic State Central Committee ! 

The challenge should properly have proceeded from Senator Doug- 
las, but it having become apparent that he did not intend to meet Mr. 
Lincoln, it was thought proper by Mr. Lincoln's friends that the chal- 
lenge should come from our side. The delay was a matter of courtesy 
toward Mr. Douglas, and not for the reasons the Senator intimates in 
his reply. In courteous demeanor, as well as in the honorable conduct 
of an argument before the people Mr. Douglas will ever find, as in 
many campaigns he has heretofore found, Mr. Lincoln to be at least 
his equal. 

We much regret that the two candidates cannot canvass the whole 
State, by speaking together at every county, and in every town of any 
size or importance. We desire the people to have a fair hearing and a 
full understanding of the positions, sentiments and argumentative 
ability of the two men. But the seven meetings proposed, will be 
better than none. They will give the people of the several Congress- 
ional districts an opportunity to get together on the days appointed, 
in great mass meetings, to hear the great political topics of the day 
discussed, (fairly and ably we trust) and to "reason together" in the 
spirit of candor, and with the desire to get at the truth. — Let Con- 
gressional Mass Meetings be the order of the day. 

[Illinois State Register, July 29, 1858] 
From the Chicago Times 

LINCOLN'S CHALLENGE.-D01IGLAS' REPLY 

On the 9th of July Judge Douglas made his speech in Chicago, and 
the next evening Mr. Lincoln replied to it. Both gentlemen remained 
in Chicago for several days thereafter. Subsequently, Judge Douglas 



62 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

proceeded to Springfield to be present at a meeting of the democratic 
state committee — held for the purpose of making appointments for 
public meetings from that period until the election. On his way to 
Springfield he stopped at Bloomington, Atlanta and Lincoln, and at all 
these places met Mr. Lincoln and conversed with him. When Mr. 
Douglas reached Springfield, there were hand-bills conspicuousl}^ 
posted all over the city announcing that Mr. Lincoln would speak that 
evening. Judge Douglas remained at Springfield two or three days, 
and then returned to this city. In the meantime the state committee 
had made out their programme for democratic meetings all over the 
state, commencing at Clinton, July 27, and ending, we believe, at 
Atlanta, on the last of October. On Saturday evening last, July 24, 
Mr. Lincoln, having read in the papers the announcement of Judge 
Douglas' appointments for August, came up to Chicago, and sent him 
a note proposing a joint discussion, which note, as well as the reply, 
we publish below. 

Mr. Lincoln evidently has been consulting his own fears and the 
result likely to follow a separate canvass. He dreaded personally the 
consequence of a joint discussion, yet he knew that his only chance to 
obtain respectable audiences, was to make an arrangement to speak 
at the same meetings with Douglas ; between the two causes of dread 
he has been shivering for nearly a month, and at last, believing that 
Douglas, having announced his meetings would not change his pro- 
gramme, has allowed his friends to persuade him to make a challenge 
for a joint discussion. The reply of Judge Douglas, while it explains 
fully the reasons why he cannot now agree to a joint discussion at all 
his meetings, tenders Mr. Lincoln a meeting at seven different points 
in the state. The points designated are important ones; one in each 
congressional district, and while it disturbs the arrangements hereto- 
fore made by the democracy, and communicated to all parts of the 
state, the proposition of Judge Douglas, if accepted by Mr. Lincoln, 
will in all probability afford the latter about as much of a joint debate 
as he will fancy. We doubt very much even if Mr. Lincoln's friends 
can screw his courage up sufficiently to enable him to accept this 
offer, whether he will even go through with the seven appointments. 
We think one, or at all events two of such meetings, will be sufficient 
to gratify Mr. Lincoln's ambition. 

We will see, however, whether he will accept Douglas' offer. 



THE CHALLENGE 63 

LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 

In today's paper we cop}^ from the Chicago Times a correspondence 
between Messrs. Lincoln and Douglas, in which the former suggests 
an arrangement by which the two senatorial candidates will canvass 
the state together. After Mr. Douglas had issued notice of his appoint- 
ments to meet the people, prior to which Mr. Lincoln had ample time 
and opportunity to make and receive a response to such a proposition, 
it will surprise the public that he has made such an offer. Upon this 
the Times pointedly comments, and to which Mr. Douglas refers in his 
reply. He however, offers Mr. Lincoln ample opportunity to discuss 
the issues between them before the people. Mr. Douglas proposes to 
meet Mr. Lincoln at one point in each of the congressional districts 
of the state, except in this and in the 2d district, where they have 
already spoken. Mr. Lincoln cannot expect his opponent to break 
his appointments already made, preparations for which the people 
at the several points are already making; but we have no doubt in 
the seven encounters proposed by Mr. Douglas, if Mr. Lincoln will 
accept, he will get enough of debate and discomfiture to last him the 
balance of his life. Will he accept? 

[Peoria, III., Daily Transcript, July 29, 1858] 

LINCOLN CHALLENGES DOUGLAS TO STUMP THE 

STATE WITH HIM 

After waiting several weeks hoping that Judge Douglas would, 
according to the western custom, challenge him to stump the state, 
Honorable Abram Lincoln sent a note to Judge D. the other day invit- 
ing him to make an arrangement to divide time and address the same 
audiences. The Judge has returned a lengthy reply, excusing himself 
from accepting such a challenge. His excuse is that he has placed his 
time at the disposal of the Democratic State Committee, who have 
made appointments for him which will consume his time until about 
the middle of October. The excuse will hardly relieve Mr. Douglas 
from the suspicion that he fears to meet so powerful opponent as Mr. 
Lincoln in argument before the people. He intimates, in his note, 
that it was well known that his recent journey to Springfield was made 
for the purpose of consulting with the state committee, and that if 
Mr. Lincoln desired to canvass the state with him he should have made 
the fact known before that consultation was had. How the fact 
should be well known that Judge Douglas' journey to Springfield was 



64 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

for the purpose of such a consultation as he describes, or any other 
kind of consultation, is certainly beyond our comprehension. It was 
not made public through the press and we are not aware that it was 
announced outside of his immediate circle of friends, if indeed it was 
announced there. It may be relied upon, at all events, that if Mr. 
Lincoln had known that his opponent was about to make engagements 
that would preclude the possibility of arranging a canvass of the state 
with him, a challenge would have been forthcoming immediately. It 
was properly Mr. Douglas' duty to challenge Mr. Lincoln, without 
waiting to receive one. 

Mr. Douglas announces, towards the close of his reply, that it is 
probable that he can meet Mr. Lincoln before the people once in each 
Congressional district. We hope he will be able to; and in the mean- 
time, if he is disposed to be an honest man, let him desist from such 
gross misrepresentations of Mr, Lincoln's position as he has thus far 
indulged in. 

[Freeport, III, Journal, July 29, 1858] 

AT FEEEPORT 

Mr. Lincoln having challenged Senator Douglas to meet him on 
the stump all over the state, the latter declines the general invitation, 
but agrees to meet him at seven places, as follows : Freeport, Ottawa, 
Galesburg, Quincy, Alton, Jonesboro, and Charleston, provided Lin- 
coln will come at the times that Douglas' friends may have chosen, if 
any. Though this is a half way evasion of the challenge, we are glad 
that we, in Freeport at least, will have an opportunity to hear these 
two champions from the same stand. We bespeak for them the larg- 
est gathering ever known here, and are willing to let the people 
judge for themselves as to who shall be their choice, after a fair 
hearing of them both in person. 

[Illinois State Register, July 31, 1858] 

LINCOLN'S CHALLENGE 

The republican organs make a most clumsy effort to have it appear 
that Senator Douglas declines a general canvass with Mr. Lincoln, 
because the former dreads the combat! The very tone of these 
organs, in their silly assertions on this point, denies their sincerity. 
The idea that a man who has crossed blades in the senate with the 
strongest intellects of the country, who has as the champion of 
democratic principles in the senatorial arena, routed all opposition — 



THE CHALLENGE 65 

that such a man dreads encounter with Mr. A. Lincoln is an absurdity 
that can be uttered by his organs only with a ghastly phiz. Mr. 
Lincoln, if he desired what his organs claim, had ample opportunity 
to make his proposition. He could have made such an arrangement 
as would have, had he held out, shown him in withering contrast in 
every county seat in the state. He was not anxious for the fray! or he 
would have made his proposition at Chicago, or here, where he had 
ample opportunity; but he waits until Mr. Douglas makes other 
arrangements, and advertises them, in a manner that they must, 
with propriety, be fulfilled, when he banters for battle, knowing his 
proposition cannot be accepted. 

Mr. Douglas' reply to his note affords him fray enough. He has 
opportunity, at seven different points in the state, to show his metal. 
If he was good for fifty or a hundred encounters, he certainly ought to 
be for seven. Will he accept? The joint efforts of the two parties 
certainly will insure large turn-outs of the people, and we have no 
doubt the railroads, which have latterly become a nightmare to the 
republican candidate, will assist, and make, in a "business" way, 
a "good thing" of it. 

Let us have a gl'and turn-out of the people at one point in each 
congressional district. The democracy of Illinois will submit the 
whole case to such popular jurors, called together by the joint effort of 
the two parties. 

[Burlington, Iowa, Gazette, July 31, 1858] 

DOUGLAS AND LINCOLN 

So perverse in their nature are some black republican editors that it 
seems an impossibility for them to tell the truth. Our home con- 
temporary [Hawkeye] is of this class. Mark what he says in the fol- 
lowing lines: 

Lincoln has challenged Douglas to canvass Illinois together, addressing the 
people from the same stump. Judges Douglas dodges. 

Judge Douglas dodges, eh? Well, let us see if he dodges. Here 
is the correspondence entire between Lincoln and Douglas relating to 
the matter. 

No sir, Douglas will meet Lincoln if Lincoln dare to meet Douglas; 
and the only dodging there will be on the part of the " Little Giant " 
will take place when the people of Illinois, through their representa- 
tives elect, dodge him into the Senatorship again, as they most assured- 
ly! 'will. 



66 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

[Daily Herald, Quiney, 111., July 29, 1858] 

DOUGLAS AND LINCOLN ON THE STUMP 

We copy below, from the Chicago Times, a correspondence that 
recently took place between Judge Douglas and Mr. Lincoln, in regard 
to the plan of the present campaign. Lincoln, having thus far failed 
to attract a respectable audience, seems to be entirely willing to avail 
himself of Judge Douglas' great fame and popularity to get up crowds 
for him to speak to. Nobody seems to care about hearing anything 
from Lincoln — but the masses of all parties, wherever he goes, turn 
out to see and hear Douglas. Hence, Lincoln asks him if he won't let 
him follow along after him and permit him to speak to the crowds that 
turn out, not to hear him, but to hear Douglas. 

In response to the suggestion of Douglas for seven 
meetings, Lincoln framed a reply. Before it was delivered, 
he met Douglas by accident near Monticello in the course 
of the campaign and tendered him the paper. Douglas' 
reporters took advantage of the incident to ridicule 
Lincoln. 

[Chicago Times, August 1, 1858] 

THE CAMPAIGN 



Douglas at Monticello.— Great Enthusiasm Everywliere 

Monticello, July 29, 1858 
.... The meeting then adjourned, and Senator Douglas, who 
was to fill an appointment at Paris on Saturday next, was escorted to 
the railway station at Bement by the delegation from Okaw, Bement 
and that vicinity. About two miles out of the town the procession 
met Mr. Lincoln, who was on his way to Monticello. As he passed, 
Senator Douglas called to him to stop, that he wanted to see him. 
Lincoln jumped out of his carriage and shook hands with the Senator, 
who said to him, "Come, Lincoln, return to Bement. You see we 
have only a mile or two of people here. I will promise you a much 
larger meeting there than you will have at Monticello". "No, 
Judge," replied Lincoln, "I can't. The fact is I did not come over 
here to make a speech. I don't intend to follow you any more; 
I don't call this following you. I have come down here from Spring- 
field to see you and give you my reply to your letter. I have it in 



THE CHALLENGE 67 

my pocket, but I have not compared it with the copy yet. We can 
compare the two now, can't we?" Senator Douglas told him that 
he had better compare the two at Monticello, and, when he had his 
answer ready, send it to him at Bement, where he intended to remain 
until the one o'clock p. m. train for the East. This Lincoln promised 
to do, and after again assuring the Senator that he must not consider 
his visit to Monticello "following" him — that such a ''conclusion" 
would be erroneous — the two separated, after shaking hands. . . . 

[Missouri Republican, St. Louis, August 1, 1858] 

THE CAMPAIGN IN ILLINOIS 



An Account of Piatt County.— Speeches, etc. 

Monticello, Piatt Co , Ills., July 30 

When he [Douglas] had finished he was escorted to the railroad 
depot by a large procession. Col. W. N. Color, the Democratic 
nominee for the Legislature in this district, was present during the 
speech. At its conclusion he was announced to reply to Mr. Lincoln 
on Friday. 

On the way to the railway track the procession of the Judge was 
met by Abe, who in a kind of nervous-excited manner tumbled out of 
his carriage, his legs appearing sadly in the way or out of place. 
Lincoln is looking quite worn out, his face looks even more haggard 
than when he said it was lean, lank and gaunt. He got to the Judge's 
carriage with a kind of hop, skip and jump, and then, with a con- 
siderable of bowing and scraping, he notified Mr. Douglas that he 
had an answer to his letter, of which we have spoken heretofore ; that 
it was long, that he had not compared the original and the copy, and 
could the Judge just wait, that the comparsion might be made by 
the roadside. Just think of staying out in the middle of a vast 
prairie, surrounded by hundreds of followers, to compare notes. 
Douglas of course declined, requesting Mr. L. to compare to his own 
satisfaction, and then forward the communication. 

Lincoln proceeded on his way to Monticello, some of us bearing 
him company, the Judge returning on his proper route. A meeting 
was at once organized to hear him speak. He mounted in the Court 
House Square and thus spoke for about half an hour. He would not 
speak then, he would, however, read the correspondence with the 



68 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Judge, together with the reply he was going to send the Judge, all of 
which he did. 

B. B. 

[Illinois State Register, August 2, 1858] 

MoNTiCELLO, July 29 

I returned to Monticello to hear Lincoln. He spoke in the grove 
where Senator Douglas had spoken an hour or two before and promised 
the people that before the canvass was over he would visit them again 
in company with Judge Trumbull, who would reply to Douglas. 

It was expected that he would remain here for a day or two, or 
follow Senator Douglas to Paris, but he left suddenly on the midnight 
train for Springfield and one of his friends told me that he did not 
intend to follow Judge Douglas any more, but was going immediately 
to Chicago to consult with Cook, Bross, and other friends, and 
make out a list of his own appointments. Piatt 

Lincoln's reply to the suggestion of Douglas was as 

follows : 

Springfield, July 29, 1858 
Hon S. A. Douglas. 

Dear Sir: Yours of the 24th in relation to an arrangement to 
divide time, and address the same audiences, is received; and, in apol- 
ogy for not sooner replying, allow me to say, that when I sat by you 
at dinner yesterday, I was not aware that you had answered my note, 
nor, certainly that my own note had been presented to you. An hour 
after, I saw a copy of your answer in the Chicago Times, and reaching 
home, I found the original awaiting me. Protesting that your insin- 
uations of attempted unfairness on my part are unjust, and with the 
hope that you did not very considerately make them, I proceed to 
reply. To your statement that " It has been suggested, recently, that 
an arrangement had been made to bring out a third candidate for the 
United States Senate, who, with yourself, should canvass the State in 
opposition to me," etc., I can only say, that such suggestion must 
have been made by yourself, for certainly none such has been made by 
or to me, or otherwise, to my knowledge. Surely you did not deliber- 
ately conclude, as you insinuate, that I was expecting to draw you into 
an arrangement of terms, to be agreed on by yourself, by which a 
third candidate and myself, " in concert, might be able to take the 
opening and closing speech in every case. " 



THE CHALLENGE 69 

As to your surprise that I did not sooner make the proposal to divide 
time with you, I can only say, I made it as soon as I resolved to make 
it. I did not know but that such proposal would come from you; I 
waited, respectfully, to see. It may have been well known to you 
that you went to Springfield for the purpose of agreeing on the plan 
of campaign; but it was not so known to me. When your appoint- 
ments were announced in the papers, extending only to the 21st of 
August, I, for the first time considered it certain that you would make 
no proposal to me, and then resolved that, if my friends concurred, 
I would make one to you. As soon thereafter as I could see and con- 
sult with friends satisfactorily, I did make the proposal. It did not 
occur to me that the proposed arrangement could derange your plans 
after the latest of your appointments already made. After that, 
there was, before the election, largely over two months of clear time. 

For you to say that we have already spoken at Chicago and Spring- 
field, and that on both occasions I had the concluding speech, is hardly 
a fair statement. The truth rather is this : At Chicago, July 9th, you 
made a carefully prepared conclusion on my speech of June 16th. 
Twenty-four hours after, I made a hasty conclusion on yours of the 
9th. You had six days to prepare, and concluded on me again at 
Bloomington on the 16th. Twenty-four hours after, I concluded 
again on you at Springfield. In the mean time, you had made 
another conclusion on me at Springfield, which I did not hear, and of 
the contents of which I knew nothing when I spoke; so that your 
speech made in daylight, and mine at night, of the 17th, at Springfield, 
were both made in perfect independence of each other. The dates of 
making all these speeches will show, I think, that in the matter of 
time for preparation, the advantage has all been on your side, and that 
none of the external circumstances have stood to my advantage. 

I agree to an arrangement for us to speak at the seven places you 
have named, and at your own times, provided you name the times at 
once, so that I, as well as you, can have to myself the time not covered 
by the arrangement. As to the other details, I wish perfect recipro- 
city and no more. I wish as much time as you, and that conclusions 
shall alternate. That is all. Your obedient servant, 

A. Lincoln 

P. S. — As matters now stand, I shall be at no more of your exclusive 
meetings; and for about a week from today a letter from you will 
reach me at Springfield. A. L. 



70 



LLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 



To this Mr. Douglas replied: 

Bement, Piatt Co., III., July 30, 1858 
Dear Sir : Your letter dated yesterday, accepting my proposition 
for a joint discussion at one prominent point in each Congressional 
District, as stated in my previous letter, was received this morning. 
The times and places designated are as follows: 
Ottawa, LaSalle County, August 21, 



Freeport, Stephenson County, 
Jonesboro, Union County, 
Charleston, Coles County, 
Galesburg, Knox County, 
Quincy, Adams County, . 
Alton, Madison County, . 



1858 



27, 

September 15, 

. " 18, 

October 7, 

. " 13, 

. " 15, 



I agree to your suggestion that we shall alternately open and close 
the discussion. I will speak at Ottawa one hour, you can reply, 
occupying an hour and a half, and I will then follow for half an hour. 
At Freeport, you shall open the discussion and speak one hour; I will 
follow for an hour and a half, and you can then reply for half an hour. 
We will alternate in like manner in each successive place. 
Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

S. A. Douglas 

Hon. a. Lincoln, Springfield, 111. 

This arrangement was accepted by Mr. Lincoln: 

Springfield, July 31, 1858 
Hon. S. A. Douglas. 

Dear Sir: Yours of yesterday, naming places, times, and terms, 
for joint discussions between us, was received this morning. Al- 
though, by the terms, as you propose, you take four openings and 
closes, to my three, I accede, and thus close the arrangement. I 
direct this to you at Hillsboro, and shall try to have both your letter 
and this appear in the Journal and Register of Monday morning. 
Your obedient servant, A. Lincoln 

[Chicago Times, August 1, 1858] 

THE AGREEMENT BETWEEN SENATOR DOUGLAS 

AND MR. LINCOLN. 

We received yesterday, and print this morning, the final corre- 
spondence between Senator Douglas and Mr. Lincoln, in relation to 




CONGRESSIONAL MAP OF ILLINOIS, 1858 

Showing places where the seven debates were held, numbered in order 



THE CHALLENGE 71 

addressing the people in company. Those readers who examine the 
letter of our Monticello correspondent will learn somewhat of the cir- 
cumstances which attended the conclusion of this arrangement. Mr. 
Lincoln's letter is dated Springfield, but it was sent by the author 
from some place in Piatt county to Senator Douglas in Bement. We 
are not disposed to criticise too harshly the style of Mr. Lincoln's 
letter. It is now printed and speaks for itself its own praise or con- 
demnation. But, the public will have their opinion of it, and it can 
be none other than that it is as badly conceived as bunglingly express- 
ed. We hope, however, that we have seen the "conclusion" of the 
correspondence, and do not question that by the time Mr. Lincoln has 
"concluded" on Senator Douglas, once or twice, and permitted 
Senator Douglas to " conclude "on him an equal number of times, he 
will " conclude " that he better haul off and lay by for repairs. 

We need not describe the arrangement, as it is made fully to appear 
in the correspondence itself. 

[Illinois State Journal, July 31, 1858] 

MR. LINCOLN'S CHALLENGE TO MR. DOUGLAS.- 
REJOINDER OF MR. LINCOLN 

We have already published the letter of Mr. Lincoln challenging 
Mr. Douglas to a joint canvass of the State, and also the letter of Mr. 
Douglas in reply, declining the invitation in the most pettifogging and 
cowardly manner. Today we publish a rejoinder of Mr. Lincoln, 
exposing the flimsy pretexts upon which Mr. Douglas places his de- 
clension and at the same time cordially responding to that part of the 
reply in which Mr. Douglas reluctantly consents to allow himself to be 
used up by Mr. Lincoln at seven different places. It is clear that Mr. 
Douglas is not fond of Mr. Lincoln's rough handling and is anxious 
to get out of an ugly scrape on any terms. In this matter Douglas 
goes on the principle that discretion is the better part of valor. 

We knew from the first that Douglas would not dare to make a 
general canvass of the state with Lincoln. He had to run away from 
that gentleman in 1854 and dared not stand his broadsides now. If 
he dared not meet Lincoln in the first dawnings of his conspiracy to 
Africanize the whole American Continent, of course he would object 
still more to such a canvass in 1858, when the evidences of that con- 
spiracy are so numerous and overwhelming that even his audacity 
shrinks from denying it. But we did expect that Mr. Douglas would 



72 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

at leastfput his refusal on some more plausible ground than a mere 
squibble. The idea that Mr. Douglas is unable to meet Mr. Lincoln 
in debate because forsooth a Democratic Central Committe had 
already made some half dozen appointments for him, is pitiful — 
just as though those appointments could not be changed, or so modi- 
fied as also to embrace a discussion with Mr. Lincoln or leaving those 
appointments out of the question, just as though there was not yet re- 
maining full two months in which to make the canvass with Mr. 
Lincoln! However it is viewed, Mr. Douglas' attempt to Skulk 
behind a Central Committee, is a cowardly showing of the white 
feather. 

[Chicago Daily Journal, August 2, 1858] 
The Times finds fault with Mr. Lincoln's letter to Mr. Douglas 
because it is " bunglingly expressed. " 

Our neighbor should recollect that he has not the advantage of 
having the Douglas candidate for Superintendent of Public Instruc- 
tion to correct it for him! 

[Illinois State Register, Springfield, August 2, 1858] 

DISCUSSION BETWEEN MESSRS. DOUGLAS AND 

LINCOLN 

We were furnished on Saturday, by Mr. Lincoln, with the following 
correspondence, from which it will be seen that he agrees to meet Mr. 
Douglas in discussion at seven points in the state, which are named in 
the note of the letter. Mr. Lincoln cannot forego, even in this brief 
note, the expression of the idea uppermost with him, that he is "a, 
victim," Douglas has one more "opening" than himself, which, if it 
were not so, Mr. Lincoln would have one more than Mr. Douglas. As 
we are told by Mr. Lincoln's organs that Douglas felt incapable of de- 
bating successfully with Mr. L., the latter should have forborne his 
lament, in a spirit of magnanimity. 

Now there is a bit of egotism in all this, pardonable, probably, in 
view of Mr. Lincoln's extremity. Why had he, any more than Went- 
worth, or Browning, or Gillespie, or Palmer, or Dougherty, or Judd, 
or any other republican or Danite notability, a right to expect a chal- 
lenge for debate from Douglas. True, Lincoln had thrust himself 
before all the reception meetings gotten up in honor of Mr. Douglas, 
and had taken shape as a senatorial candidate; but as Mr. Douglas 



THE CHALLENGE 73 

suggests, there are others with similar aspirations. He had in this 
manner of doubtful propriety, made himself a figure out of place, but 
we cannot see that the circumstances were such as to induce Mr. 
Douglas to single him out from the number of his opponents — black 
republican and Danite, and challenge him to a general canvass. Mr. 
Lincoln's political necessities may have needed this boosting of him 
into prominence, but he is scarcely justified in lamenting that Mr. 
Douglas did not contribute to it. 

Mr. Douglas, as a representative of his state in the senate, was a 
prominent actor in the exciting debates of the last session. His action 
and his motives therefor had been condemned and impugned, and he 
had concluded, on his return home, to go before his constituents to 
render an account of the course he had deemed proper to pursue, as 
well as to advocate the principles, policy and the election of the candi- 
dates of his party. Mr. Lincoln was as well qualified to know that 
Mr. Douglas came to this city to arrange with his party friends for this 
purpose, as was Mr. Douglas that Mr. Lincoln's party friends had 
arranged that he was to champion their cause; and as such, if it was 
his desire to have had a general canvass, single-handed, he could have 
made it known at the threshold — at Chicago. Why he did not do it, 
is simply because he had not " resolved " to do it and we think he did 
not resolve to do it because he thought he could cut a better figure by 
waiting until Mr. Douglas had made other arrangements, and then 
pompously send a challenge which he knew could not be accepted. 

Mr. Lincoln knew it was Mr. Douglas' intention to canvass the 
state long before Mr. D's return home. If it was his desire to canvass 
with him — if it was the desire of his party that he should do so, he 
should have met the ''lion," with a watchful resistance, at the gate, 
and not have waited for his terms, and the mode and manner of 
being eaten up. 

This bit of pettifogging jugglery on the part of Mr. Lincoln and 
his backers can only be viewed as such by the people of the state. The 
twaddle of his organ about Douglas' dread of his prowess is unworthy 
of comment. Mr. Douglas' agreement to meet him as proposed in the 
correspondence above, which could not, under the circumstances, be 
declined by Mr. Lincoln, is, doubtless, more than they bargained for 
in their epistolary efforts to make a brave front on paper, as they will 
certainly learn before they are through with a small portion of the 
large job they profess to bid for. 



74 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Eastern newspapers at first failed to appreciate the im- 
portance of this challenge and acceptance, although the 
arrangement caused extensive comment in the Illinois 
press, as the above quotations would indicate. In the 
older section the breach between Douglas and Buchanan 
continued to be extensively treated by editorial writers. 



CHAPTER IV 

REPORTING THE DEBATES 
MR. HORACE WHITE 

Mr. White, the official reporter of the Debates for the 
Chicago Press and Tribune, was born in New Hampshire 
in 1834. When three years of age, he was taken with the 
family to Wisconsin Territory, where the city of Beloit now 
stands. In 1849, Horace entered Beloit College, was 
graduated in 1853, and became a reporter on the Chicago 
Evening Journal. In 1857 he spent a short time in 
Kansas, returning to Chicago to become an editorial 
writer on the Chicago Press and Tribune. While holding 
this position, he was designated as chief correspondent to 
accompany Abraham Lincoln in 1858 on his campaign 
against Stephen A. Douglas for the United States sena- 
torship. 

The notable features of this campaign were given to the 
public chiefly through Mr. White's letters to the Chicago 
Tribune, and were subsequently condensed by him at the 
instance of William H. Herndon and published in the 
latter's Life of Lincoln (2d ed., D. Appleton & Co., New 
York). In 1861 Mr. White was sent to Washington as 
correspondent of the Chicago Tribune, and while there he 
filled successfully the places of clerk of the Senate Com- 
mittee on Military Affairs and clerk in the War Depart- 
ment. In the latter capacity he was assigned to the 
special service of P. H. Watson, assistant secretary of 
war, and later of Edwin M. Stanton, secretary. In 1865 
he became part owner and chief editor of the Chicago 
Tribune, which place he filled until September, 1874, 

75 



76 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

when he resigned and was succeeded by Joseph Medill ; he 
spent the year 1875 in Europe. In 1877 he removed to 
Xew York and became associated ^ith Henry Mllard in 
the latter *s railroad enterprises, especially that of the 
Oregon Railway and Navigation Co., of which he was 
treasurer for the next few years. In 1881 he joined wdth 
Mr. Mllard in the purchase of the Xeiv York Evening Post, 
of which he became the president and one of the editoi-s, 
in conjunction with Carl Schurz and Edwin L. Godkin. 
Mr. Schurz retired in 1884, Mr. Godkin in 1899, and Mr. 
White in 1903. Mr. White is best known by his contri- 
butions to the various campaigns for sound money that 
have been fought in the political arena since the close of 
the Ci\al War. In addition to his editorial work he has 
been a frequent contributor to the magazines and pamph- 
let literature of that period. He resides (1908) in New 
York aty. 

It was my good fortune to accompany Mr. Lincoln during his poli- 
tical campaign against Senator Douglas in 1858, not only at the joint 
debates but also at most of the smaller meetings where his competitor 
was not present. J- We traveled together many thousands of miles. 
I was in the employ of the Chicago Tribune, then called the Press and 
Tribune. Senator Douglas had entered upon his campaign with two 
short-hand reporters, James B. Sheridan and Henr>- Binmore, whose 
duty it was to " write it up " in the columns of the Chicago Times. 
The necessity of counteracting or matching that force became appar- 
ent very soon, and I was chosen to write up Mr. Lincoln's campaign. 

I was not a short-hand reporter. The verbatim reporting for the 
Chicago Tribune in the joint debates was done by Mr. Robert R. Hitt, 

late assistant secretary- of state Verbatim reporting was a new 

feature in journalism in Chicago and Mr. Hitt was the pioneer thereof. 
The publication of Senator Douglas' opening speech in that campaign, 
delivered on the evening of Julv 9, bv the Tribune the next morning;, 
was a feat hitherto unexampled in the West, and most mortifying to 
the Democratic newspaper, the Times, and to Sheridan and Binmore, 

•■Mr. Horace White in Hemdon's Life of Lincoln, by permission of D. Appleton & Co. 




HORACE WHITE 

From a photograph made in 1854, and loaned by Mr. White, now a resident of Xew York City. 



REPORTING THE DEBATES , 77 

who, after taking down the speech as carefully as Mr. Hitt had done, 
had gone to bed intending to write it out the next day, as was then 
customary. 

All of the seven joint debates were reported by Mr. Hitt for the 
Tribune, the manuscript passing through my hands before going to the 
printers, but no changes were made by me except in a few cases where 
confusion on the platform, or the blowing of the wind, had caused 
some slight hiatus or evident mistake in catching the speaker's words. 
I could not resist the temptation to italicise a few passages in Mr. 
Lincoln 's speeches, where his manner of delivery had been especiallj^ 
emphatic. 

Here [Ottawa] I was joined by Mr. Hitt and also by Mr. Chester 
P. Dewey of the New York Evening Post, who remained with us until 
the end of the campaign. Hither, also, came quite an army of young 
newspaper men, among whom was Henry Villard, in behalf of For- 
ney's Philadelphia Press. 

MR. ROBERT R. HITT 

Robert Roberts Hitt was born in Urbana, Champaign 
County, Ohio, January 16, 1834. In 1837, the Hitts 
moved to Illinois and with their following settled in Ogle 
County, and established what became the village of 
Mount Morris. Educated at the Rock River Seminary at 
Mount Morris, an institution founded by his father and 
uncle, and later graduated from the Asbury (now Depauw) 
University of Indiana, the subject of this sketch trained 
himself in the art of phonography and in 1856 opened an 
office in Chicago and established himself as a court and 
newspaper shorthand reporter, the first expert stenogra- 
pher permanently located in that city. His work as a 
stenographer first brought him into the notice of Abraham 
Lincoln, then practicing law, and later as a newspaper 
reporter in reporting the campaign speeches of Lincoln 
and other prominent orators of the day, including Douglas, 
Logan, Lovejoy, and indeed of all the great speakers of 
the Middle West of that time. During the Lincoln-Doug- 



78 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

las debates he was the verbatim reporter, receiving the 
highest praise from Mr. Lincoln for the accuracy of his 
work. 

During the sessions of 1858, 1859, and 1860, Mr. Hitt 
was the official stenographer of the Illinois legislature, 
having the contract for both the senate and the house. 
In 1867 and 1868 he made a tour of Europe and Asia, 
daily taking down in shorthand notes his impressions of 
the peoples and conditions of the countries and places 
visited. Upon his return he was again employed by the 
government in confidential cases, including missions to 
Santo Domingo and to the southern states to investigate 
the Ku Klux Klan, after which he became private secre- 
tary to Senator O. P. Morton, and in December of the 
sa.me year was appointed secretary of legation at Paris, 
by President Grant, which position he held for six years. 

In 1880, upon the request of Mr. Blaine, then secretary 
of state. President Garfield appointed him assistant secre- 
tary, which position he resigned to become a candidate 
for Congress, to which he was elected in 1882. He served 
continuously from the Forty-eighth to the Fifty-eighth 
Congress. While serving his twelfth term, Mr. Hitt died 
on September 20, 1906 at Narragansett Pier, Rhode Island. 

[Phonographic Magazine, VII, 205; June 1, 1893] 

AN INTERVIEW WITH HON. R. E. HITT 

When I was a lad of nearly fifteen, I saw some little pamphlets 
which were handed me by a man named Pickard, in 1850, in advocacy 
of phonetic reform, and it was through the advertisements in them 
that I procured the phonographic manuals. From these works I 
obtained enough knowledge of the principles and rules of shorthand 
to begin to use it. 

The first fruitful use of it was in taking notes of lectures at college. 
After graduating at Mt. Morris College I went to New Orleans, con- 
stantly practicing the art and gaining speed. In the spring of 1857 
I returned to Illinois, then removed to Chicago and began to report 




ROBERT R. HITT 

From a daguerreotype made in 1858, and loaned by Mrs. Hitt, of Washington, D C 



REPORTING THE DEBATES 79 

court cases. In 1858 the contest between Stephen A. Douglas and Mr. 
Lincoln for the Senate brought Mr. Lincoln into national view. 
Seven debates were arranged between them and I was employed to 
report them on the Republican side. 

There was no one to assist in reporting but a young man named 
Laraminie from Montreal, who was a skillful reader of shorthand and 
could transcribe my notes with perfect accuracy. At Quincy, Illinois, 
where one of the debates was held, he took the train for Chicago, 
which left before the debate was finished, carrying with him my notes 
of the earlier part of the debate, and I first saw the work printed 
in a newspaper. Mr. Lincoln never saw the report of any of the 
debates. I mention this as it was often charged at that time in the 
fury of partisan warfare that Mr. Lincoln's speeches were doctored 
and almost re-written before they were printed; that this was neces- 
sary because he was so petty a creature in ability, in thought, in 
style, in speaking when compared with the matchless Douglas. 

[New York Herald, May 29, 1904] 

To tell the story of Mr. Hitt's public career with anything like 
completeness would require columns of space. He first came into the 
public eye just after he left college. He had learned the system of 
shorthand then in use and was probably the only stenographer in the 
West at that time who could take a speech verbatim as it was delivered 
from the rostrum. 

Abraham Lincoln had heard of his rare accomplishment and made 
a requisition on the young man to report the Lincoln-Douglas debate 
at Freeport, Illinois. It is chronicled that when the debate was about 
to begin, Mr. Lincoln lifted his long form from a chair, looked out over 
the immense audience, and shouted, " Where's Hitt? Is Hitt present?" 

The future representative and possible vice-president was far out on 
the edge of the crowd. 

"Here I am, Mr. Lincoln," he cried, "but I can't get through this 
crowd to the stand". Whereupon strong men lifted the frail, slender 
young man into the air and passed him along over the heads of the 
crowd to the platform. Mr. Hitt took complete notes of the speech and 
afterward transcribed most of them himself. Some of Mr. Lincoln's 
political enemies, who had brought an indictment of illiteracy against 
the gaunt Illinois statesman, charged Mr. Hitt with "doctoring" the 
English of the speech, but he denied that he had taken any liberties 



80 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

with Lincoln's phraseology His notes of the Lincoln-Douglas 

debates would be invaluable literary documents today, but he did not 
preserve them. . . . Because of the prestige growing out of his 
services in the Lincoln-Douglas debate, he was selected to make the 
official report of the trouble that arose in 1860 in the Department of 
Missouri under General Fremont. 

HENRY BINMORE 

Henry Binmore was born in London, England, Sep- 
tember 23, 1833; educated in the schools of England and 
at Wickhall College, and came to Montreal, Canada, at the 
age of 16. He at once entered the profession of journal- 
ism and invented a system of phonographic reporting 
peculiar to himself. With it he was able to attain a 
desirable speed, but could not exchange reading with 
other systems. He continued at newspaper work in 
Montreal, New York, and St. Louis for several years, 
including a term as reporter in the Missouri state senate. 
In 1858 he was employed on the St. Louis Republican, a 
Douglas organ, and was sent to Illinois to report the 
triumphant home-coming of the senator. His reports 
appearing in the Republican showed such skill in his art 
that he was employed by the Chicago Times, the official 
newspaper of Douglas, to report the set debates with 
Lincoln. He shared this task with James B. Sheridan, a 
regular phonographic reporter, brought from Philadelphia. 

At the close of the campaign, Mr. Binmore became a 
private secretary to Douglas and in 1860 was made report- 
er in the House of Representatives. From this position 
he resigned to accept a secretarial appointment on the 
staff of General Prentiss and later on that of General 
Hurlbut. At the close of the war, he returned to Chicago, 
became a law reporter, was admitted to the bar, and died 
in that city, November 4, 1907. He left an unpublished 
manuscript on the art and experiences of reportorial 
writing. 




HENRY BINMORE 

From a conteniijorary pliotogmph in the possession of the family, Chicago 



REPORTING THE DEBATES 81 

JAMES B. SHERIDAN 

The art of phonography was early developed in Phila- 
delphia where was located a prominent school. Among 
its early disciples was Mr. Sheridan, who became a promi- 
nent reporter on Forney's Philadelphia Press. Forney 
espoused the cause of Douglas in his breach with Buchanan 
and when the senator entered upon his great canvass for 
re-election, Forney sent Sheridan to Illinois to follow the 
campaign. It was not the original intention to have him 
remain throughout the autumn, but the value of his ser- 
vices as a reporter was so evident that he was employed 
to take the debates for the Democratic Chicago Times, in 
connection with Mr. Binmore. He continued to write 
descriptive articles for the Press, many of the quotations 
from that paper printed in this volume being no doubt 
contributed by him. 

At the close of the campaign, Sheridan went to New 
York, enlisted as a northern Democrat in the Civil War, 
attained the rank of colonel, and later became the official 
reporter of the New York Supreme Court. In 1875, he 
was elected justice of the Marine Court of New York City. 
He died about 1905. 

Owing to the prevalent partisan feeling, there was com- 
plaint on both sides of unfairness in reporting the debates. 
Immediately after the appearance in print of the speeches 
in the first debate, each side accused the other of misrepre- 
senting the ideas expressed by its spokesman. The Re- 
publican press claimed that Lincoln was not given a fair 
report, and the Democratic editors replied that Lincoln 
was by nature ungrammatical and uncouth in his utter- 
ances. It is true that the variations to be noted in Mr. 
Lincoln's speeches as reported in the Republican and in 
the Democratic papers decreased steadily throughout the 



82 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

campaign. Quite naturally the Democratic reporters did 
not exercise the same care in taking the utterances of Mr. 
Lincoln as with those of Mr. Douglas, and vice versa. Mr. 
White described later the difficulties under which the 
reporting was done — the open air, the rude platforms, the 
lack of accommodations for writing, the jostling of the 
crowds of people, and the occasional puffs of wind which 
played havoc with sheets of paper. 

[Chicago Times, August 25, 1858] 

LINCOLN'S SPEECH 

We delayed the issue of our Sunday morning's paper some hours 
in order that we might publish in full the speeches of Lincoln and 
Douglas, at Ottawa. We had two phonographic reporters there to 
report these speeches. One of them (Mr. Sheridan) we have known 
personally for years, and know him to be one of the most accomplished 
phonographers in the United States Senate. The other (Mr. Bin- 
more) is reputed to be a most excellent reporter, and having had 
occasion to mark the manner in which he has on several occasions 
executed his duty, we are satisfied that he is not only a competent but 
a most faithful reporter. These two gentlemen reported the two 
speeches, and they, shortly after their arrival in Chicago from Ottawa, 
commenced transcribing the speeches from their notes. We publish 
both speeches as they were furnished us by the reporters. 

THE SPEECHES AT OTTAWA 



Auotlier Gross Charge.— Dialectics, Log-ic, and Other Things 

Any person who heard at Ottawa the speech of Abraham, alias Old 
Abe, alias Abe, alias "Spot," Lincoln, must have been astonished at 
the report of that speech as it appeared in the Press and Tribune of 
this city. Our version of it was literal. No man, who heard it 
delivered, could fail to recognize and acknowledge the fidelity of our 
reporters. We did not attempt, much, to "fix up" the bungling 
effort; that was not our business. Lincoln should have learned, 
before this, to " rake after " himself — or rather to supersede the neces- 
sity of "raking after" by taking heed to his own thoughts and 
expressions. If he ever gets into the United States Senate — of which 




JAMES B. SHERIDAN 
From a photograph in the possession of Mrs. Sheridan, New York, made about 1857 



REPORTING THE DEBATES 83 

there is no earthly probability — he will have to do that; in the 
congressional arena, the words of debaters are snatched from their 
lips, as it were, and immediately enter into and become a permanent 
part of the literature of the country. But it seems, from the dif- 
ference between the two versions of Lincoln's speech, that the 
Republicans have a candidate for the Senate of whose bad rhetoric 
and horrible jargon they are ashamed, upon which before they 
would publish it, they called a council of " literary " men, to discuss, 
re-construct and re-write; they dare not allow Lincoln to go into 
print in his own dress; and abuse us, the Times, for reporting him 
literally. 

We also printed Senator Douglas literally. Our accomplished 
reporters alone are responsible to us for the accuracy of our version of 
both speeches. There is no orator in America more correct in rhetoric, 
more clear in ideas, more direct in purpose, in all his public addresses, 
than Stephen A. Douglas. That this is so, is not our fault, but 
rather it is the pride of the Democracy of Illinois and of the Union. 

[Galesburg, III., Democrat, October 13, 1858] 

OUTRAGEOrS FRAUDS 



One Hundred and Eig-lity Mutilations Made in Lincoln's Speech by 

The Chieag"o Times! ! 

We had heard of the numerous frauds to which the Douglas party 
resort to mislead the public mind, beginning with the forgery of the 
platform at Ottawa and ending with Douglas' declaration that Mr. 
Lincoln is hired by the Illinois Central Railroad Company, at $5,000 
per year, to cheat the State of its 7 per cent, dividends of the earnings 
of the Road (the very post occupied by Mr. Douglas), but were not 
prepared for such rascality as is exhibited in the Times' report of the 
debate in this place. There is scarcely a correctly reported paragraph 
in the whole speech! Many sentences are dropped out which were 
absolutely necessary for the sense ; many are transposed so as to read 
wrong end first; many are made to read exactly the opposite of the 
orator's intention, and the whole aim has been to blunt the keen edge 
of Mr. Lincoln's wit, to mar the beauty of his most eloquent passages, 
and make him talk like a booby, a half-witted numbskull. By placing 
him thus before their readers they hope to disgust the people with Mr. 
Lincoln, and at least keep them at home if they do not vote for Doug- 
las. Even that beautiful apostrophe, quoted from the " Revered 



84 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Clay, " as Douglas hypocritically called him at the Bancroft House, 
could not go unmutilated. 

We have taken the pains to go over the reports of the speeches care- 
fully and note the material alterations — saying nothing of long pas- 
sages, where the Times' Reporter appeared to aim only at the sense, 
without giving the language — and find that the number One Hun- 
dred AND Eighty! 

We believe that an action for libel would hold against these villians, 
and they richly deserve the prosecution. 

[Chicago Times, October 12, 1858] 

GARBLIXCI SPEECHES.- THE OLD CHARGE 

We do not mean, by this remark, to cast any imputation of unfair- 
ness on Mr. Hitt, the reporter for the Press and Tribune; such impu- 
tation would be unjust, as we have reason to believe. Our controversy 
is no. with the reporter at all; for even if he should maltreat Senator 
Douglas' speeches, he would do so under instructions; he being the 
employee of our neighbor, he could not relieve the editors of the odium 
of the fact. But such are the facts; we give them, not because we feel 
very deeply on this point, but to put the public right with regard to 
them. We can prove their proof by Mr. Hitt himself, if he will go 
upon the stand under oath. Even, however, after Senator Douglas' 
speeches are marred — by striking out words, here and there, by 
mangling sentences to hide their meaning, by mis-punctuations, etc. 
etc. — and after re-writing and polishing the speeches of Lincoln, 
those of Douglas so much excelled those of his opponent, in all 
respects, that we cannot find it in our hearts to complain much. 
Poor Lincoln requires some such advantage — though it be mean — 
in his contest with the irresistible advocate of liberal principles— the 
acknowledged champion of living principles in Illinois. 

[The Daily Whig, Quincy, 111., October 16, 1858] 
Douglas carries around with him a reporter by the name of Sheridan 
whose business it is to garble the speeches of Mr. Lincoln, and amend 
and elaborate those of Douglas, for the Times. As almost everybody 
present on Wednesday could hear Mr. Lincoln distinctly, and not a 
hundred in the crowd could understand Douglas, we are curious to 
see the report that this fellow Sheridan will give of the speeches. Our 
word for it, he will serve his master to the best of his ability, and lie 
about the whole proceedings. 



CHAPTER V 

THE OTTAWA DEBATE 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, August 18, 1858] 

THE GREAT DEBATE AT OTTAWA 

The first grand encounter between the champions of Slavery and 
Freedom, — Douglas and Lincoln, — takes place at Ottawa on Saturday 
afternoon, Aug. 21st. 

A special train will leave the Rock Island depot at 8 a. m., passing 
Blue Island at 8:45, Joliet at 9:55, Morris 10:50, and Ottawa at 11:45, • 
which will give plenty of time for dinner, to arrange the preliminaries, 
and to prepare the polemic combatants for the contest. The train wiU 
leave Ottawa on its return at 6 p. m. and will be back in Chicago at 
9:45. 

Passengers will be carried the round trip for half-fare from all the 
stations above named. How big a crowd is going from this city? 
The Lincoln boys should be on hand. 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, August 21, 1858] 

ALL ABOARD FOR OTTAWA! 

. Special Despatch to Press and Tribune. 

Ottawa, Aug. 20, 1858 
Lincoln will take the Special Train from Chicago at Morris tomor- 
row morning. Please give notice to the public. 

Republican Committee 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, August 21, 1858] 

HO! FOR OTTAWA 

The gallant Lincoln will enter the lists at Ottawa today, with 
Douglas. The meeting will be a memorable one, and the first of the 
present campaign. 

A large delegation will be in attendance from this city, leaving here 
bj^ the 8 A. M. train on the Chicago & Rock Island Railroad, returning 
this evening. Let there be a good attendance of our Republicans. 

The Press and Tribune of Monday will contain a full Phono- 
graphic verbatim report of the speeches of Lincoln and Douglas. 

85 
—4 



86 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Let all who can be present hear the champions, and all who cannot 
should read and judge for themselves. 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, August 23, 1858] 

FIRST JOINT DEBATE 

At two o'clock the multitude gathered in the pubhc square, the sun 
shining down with great intensity, and the few trees affording but lit- 
tle shade. It would seem that the most exposed part of the city was 
selected for the speaking. After a long delay, the discussion was 
opened by Judge Douglas, who spoke as follows: 

Mr. Doug-las' Speech' 

Ladies and Gentlemen: I appear before you to-day for the purpose 
of discussing the leading political topics which now agitate the public 
mind. By an arrangement between Mr. Lincoln and myself, we are 
present here to-day for the purpose of having a joint discussion, as the 
representatives of the two great political parties of the State and 
Union, upon the principles in issue between those parties, and this 
vast concourse of people shows the deep feeling which pervades the 
public mind in regard to the questions dividing us. 

Prior to 1854 this country was divided into two great political 
parties, known as the Whig and Democratic parties. Both were 
national and patriotic, advocating principles that were universal in 
their application. An Old Line Whig could proclaim his principles 
in Louisiana and Massachusetts alike. Whig principles had no bound- 
ary sectional line ; they were not limited by the Ohio River, nor by the 
Potomac, nor by the line of the Free and Slave States; but applied 
and were proclaimed wherever the Constitution ruled or the American 
flag waved over the American soil. [" Hear him; " and three cheers.] 
So it was, and so it is with the great Democratic party, which, from the 
days of Jefferson until this period, has proven itself to be the historic 
party of this nation. While the Whig and Democratic parties 
differed in regard to a bank, the tariff, distribution, the specie circular, 

iThe speeches in this debate have been reprinted from the Follett, Foster & C!o. edition of 1860, 
and all the interruptions, omitted in that edition, have been added from the newspaper reports, those 
in Douglas' speeches from the official Democratic report in the Chicago Times, and those in Lincoln's 
speeches from the official Republican report in the Chicago Press and Tribune. All variants in the 
text (except those of capitalization and punctuation) from these official reports have been noticed in 
the footnotes. From an examination of these, it will be seen that Lincoln did not make any impor- 
tant changes in his speeches, and that the editors were very fair in their reprint of the speeches of his 
opponent. 



DOUGLAS AT OTTAWA 87 

and the sub-treasury, they agreed on the great slavery question 
which now agitates the Union. I say that the Whig party and the 
Democratic party agreed on this slavery question, while they differed 
on those matters of expediency to which I have referred. The 
Whig party and the Democratic party jointly adopted the Com- 
promise measures of 1850 as the basis of a proper and just solution 
of this slavery question in all its forms. Clay was the great leader, 
with Webster on his right and Cass on his left, and sustained by the 
patriots in the Whig and Democratic ranks who had devised and 
enacted the Compromise measures of 1850. 

In 1851 the Whig party and the Democratic party united in Illinois 
in adopting resolutions indorsing J- and approving the principles of the 
Compromise measures of 1850, as the proper adjustment of that ques- 
tion. In 1852, when the Whig party assembled in Convention at 
Baltimore for the purpose of nominating a candidate for the Presi- 
dency, the first thing it did was to declare the Compromise measures of 
1850, in substance and in principle, a suitable adjustment of that 
question. [Here the speaker was interrupted by loud and long-con- 
tinued applause.] My friends, silence will be more acceptable to me in 
the discussion of these questions than applause. I desire to address 
myself to your judgment, your understanding, and your consciences' 
and not to your passions or your enthusiasm. When the Democratic 
Convention assembled in Baltimore in the same year, for the purpose 
of nominating a Democratic candidate for the Presidency, it also 
adopted the Compromise measures of 1850 as the basis of Democratic 
action. Thus you see that up to 1853-'54, the Whig party and the 
Democratic party both stood on the same platform with regard to the 
slavery question. That platform was the right of the people of each 
State and each Territory to decide their local and domestic institu- 
tions for themselves, subject only to the Federal Constitution. 

During the session of Congress of 1853-'54, I introduced into the 
Senate of the United States a bill to organize the Territories of Kansas 
and Nebraska on that principle which had been adopted in the Com- 
promise measures of 1850, approved by the Whig party and the Demo- 
cratic party in Illinois in 1851, and indorsed^ by the Whig party and 
the Democratic party in National Convention in 1852. In order that 
there might be no misunderstanding in relation to the principle invol- 
ved in the Kansas and Nebraska bill, I put forth the true intent and 

^Reads: "endorsing" for "indorsing." 
■Reads: "endorsed" for "indorsed." 



88 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

meaning of the Act in these words : " It is the true intent and mean- 
ing of this Act not to legislate slavery into any State or Territory, or 
to exclude it therefrom, but to leave the people thereof perfectly free 
to form and regulate their domestic institutions in their own way, 
subject only to the Federal Constitution. " Thus you see that up to 
1854, when the Kansas and Nebraska bill was brought into Congress 
for the purpose of carrying out the principles which both parties had 
up to that time indorsed^ and approved, there had been no division 
in this country in regard to that principle except the opposition of 
the Abolitionists. In the House of Representatives of the Illinois 
Legislature, upon a resolution asserting that principle, every Whig 
and every Democrat in the House voted in the affirmative, and only 
four men voted against it, and those four were Old Line Abolitionists. 
[Cheers.] 

In 1854, Mr. Abraham Lincoln and Mr. Trumbull entered into an 
arrangement, one with the other, and each with his respective friends, 
to dissolve the old Whig party on the one hand, and to dissolve the old 
Democratic party on the other, and to connect the members of both 
into an Abolition party, under the name and disguise of a Republican 
party. [Laughter and cheers; " Hurrah for Douglas. "] The terms of 
that arrangement between Mr. Lincoln and Mr. Trumbull have been 
published to the world by Mr. Lincoln's special friend, James H. 
Matheny, Esq., and they were, that Lincoln should have Shield's 
place in the United States Senate, which was then about to become 
vacant, and that Trumbull should have my seat when my term 
expired. [Great laughter.] Lincoln went to work to Abolitionize 
the old Whig party all over the State, pretending that he was then as 
good a Whig as ever [laughter]; and Trumbull went to work in his 
part of the State preaching Abolitionism in its milder and lighter 
form, and trying to Abolitionize the Democratic part}', and bring 
old Democrats handcuffed and bound hand and foot into the Abo- 
lition camp. ["Good," "hurrah for Douglas," and cheers.] 

In pursuance of the arrangement, the parties met at Springfield in 
October, 1854, and proclaimed their new platform. Lincoln was to 
bring into the Abolition camp the Old Line Whigs, and transfer them 
over to Giddings, Chase, Fred^ Douglas, and Parson Lovejoy, who 
were ready to receive them and christen them in their new faith. 
[Laughter and cheers.] They laid down on that occasion a platform 

■^ Reads: "endorsed" for "indorsed." 

'Reads: "Ford, Douglass" for " Fred Douglass." 



DOUGLAS AT OTTAWA 89 

for their new Republican party, which was to be thus constructed. 
I have the resolutions of their State Convention then held, which 
was the first mass State Convention ever held in Illinois by the Black 
Republican party, and I now hold them in my hands, and will read 
a part of them, and cause the others to be printed. Here are^ the 
most important and material resolutions^ of this Abolition platform — 

"1. Resolved, That we believe this truth to be self-evident, that when 
parties become subversive of the ends for which they are established, or in- 
capable of restoring the Government to the true principles of the Constitution, 
it is the right and duty of the people to dissolve the political bands by which 
they may have been connected therewith, and to organize new parties, upon 
such principles and with such views as the circumstances and exigencies of 
the nation may demand. 

" 2. Resolved, That the times imperatively demand the reorganization of 
parties, and, repudiating all previous partj^ attachments, names, and predi- 
lections, we unite ourselves together in defense of the liberty and Constitution 
of the country, and will hereafter co-operate as the Republican party, pledged 
to the aceomphshment of the following purposes : To bring the administration 
of the Government back to the control of first principles, to restore Nebraska 
and Kansas to the position of Free Territories, that, as the Constitution of 
the United States vests in the States, and not in Congress, the power to legis- 
late for the extradition of fugitives from labor, to repeal and entirely abrogate 
the Fugitive-Slave law; to restrict slavery to those states in which it exists; 
to prohibit the admission of any more Slave States into the Union ; to abolish 
slavery in the District of Columbia; to exclude slavery from all the Territories 
over which the General Government has exclusive jurisdiction; and to resist 
the acquirement' of any more Territories, unless the practice of slavery 
therein forever shall have been prohibited. 

" 3. Resolved, That in furtherance of these principles we will use such Con- 
stitutional and la\vful means as shall seem best adapted to their accomplish- 
ment, and that we will support no man for office, under the General or State 
Government, who is not positively and fully committed to the support of 
these principles, and whose personal character and conduct is not a guarantee 
that he is reliable, and who shall not have abjured old party allegiance and 
ties. " 

[The resolutions as they were read were cheered throughout.] 
Now, gentlemen, your Black Republicans have cheered every one 
of those propositions ["Good" and cheers,] and yet I venture to say 
that you cannot get Mr. Lincoln to come out and say that he is now in 
favor of each one of them. [Laughter and applause. " Hit him 
again. "] That these propositions, one and all, constitute the platform 
of the Black Republican party of this day, I have no doubt ; ["Good."] 

'■Reads: "is" for "are." 

2Reads: "resolution" for "resolutions." 

3Reads: "acquirements" for "acquirement." 



90 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

and when you were not aware for what purpose I was reading them, 
your Black Republicans cheered them as good Black Republican 
doctrines. ["That's it," etc.] My object in reading these resolu- 
tions was to put the question to Abraham Lincoln this day, whether 
he now stands and will stand by each article in that creed and carry 
it out. ["Good," "Hit him again. "] I desire to know whether Mr. 
Lincoln to-day stands, as he did in 1854, in favor of the unconditional 
repeal of the Fugitive-Slave law. I desire him to answer whether he 
stands pledged to-day, as he did in 1854, against the admission of 
any more Slave States into the Union, even if the people want them. 
I want to know whether he stands pledged against the admission of a 
new State into the Union with such a Constitution as the people of 
that State may see fit to make. ["That's it;" "put it at him."] 
I want to know whether he stands to-day pledged to the abolition of 
slavery in the District of Columbia. I desire him to answer whether 
he stands pledged to the prohibition of the slave trade between the 
different States. [" He does. "] I desire to know whether he stands 
pledged to prohibit slavery in all the Territories of the United States, 
North as well as South of the Missouri Compromise line. [" Kansas 
too. "] I desire him to answer whether he is opposed to the acquisi- 
tion of any more territory, unless slavery is^ prohibited therein. 

I want his answer to these questions. Your affirmative cheers in 
favor of this Abolition platform are^ not satisfactory. I ask Abra- 
ham Lincoln to answer these questions, in order that, when I trot him 
down to lower Egypt, I may put the same questions to him. [Enthu- 
siastic applause.] My principles are the same everywhere, [Cheers, 
and "hark."] I can proclaim them alike in the North, the South, 
the East, and the West. My principles will apply wherever the 
Constitution prevails, and the American flag waves. ["Good," and 
applause.] I desire to know whether Mr. Lincoln's principles will 
bear transplanting from Ottawa to Jonesboro? I put these questions 
to him to-day distinctly, and ask an answer. I have a right to an 
answer. [" That's so ; " " he can't dodge you, " etc.], for I quote from 
the platform of the Republican party, made by himself and others at 
the time that party was formed, and the bargain made by Lincoln to 
dissolve and kill the old Whig party, and transfer its members, 

'Reads: "is first prohibited." 
-Read: "is" for "are." 



DOUGLAS AT OTTAWA 91 

bound hand and foot, to the Abohtion party, under the direction of 
Giddings and Fred Douglas. [Cheers.] 

In the remarks I have made on this platform, and the position of 
Mr. Lincoln upon it, I mean nothing personally disrespectful or unkind 
to that gentleman. I have known him for nearly twenty-five years. 
There were many points of sympathy between us when we first got 
acquainted. We were both comparatively boys, both^ struggling 
with poverty in a strange land. I was a school-teacher in the town of 
Winchester, and he a flourishing grocery-keeper in the town of Salem. 
[Applause and laughter.] He was more successful in his occupation 
than I was in mine, and hence more fortunate in this world's goods. 
Lincoln is one of those peculiar men who perform with admirable skill 
everything which they undertake. I made as good a school-teacher 
as I could, and when a cabinet-maker I made a good bedstead and 
tables, although my old boss said I succeeded better with bureaus and 
secretaries than with^ anything else ; [cheers] but I believe that Lincoln 
was always more successful in business than I, for his business enabled 
him to get into the Legislature. I met him there, however, and had a 
sympathy with him, because of the up-hill struggle we both had in 
life. He was then just as good at telling an anecdote as now. [" No 
doubt. "] He could beat any of the boys wrestling, or running a foot- 
race, in pitching quoits or tossing a copper; could ruin more hquor 
than all the boys of the town together; [uproarious laughter] and the 
dignity and impartiality with which he presided at a horse-race or 
fist-fight excited the admiration and won the praise of everybody that 
was present and participated. [Renewed laughter.] I sympathized 
with him because he was struggling with difficulties, and so was I. 
Mr. Lincoln served with me in the Legislature in 1836, when we 
both retired, and he subsided, or became submerged, and he was lost 
sight of as a public man for some years. In 1846, when Wilmot intro- 
duced his celebrated proviso, and the Abolition tornado swept over the 
country, Lincoln again turned up as a member of Congress from the 
Sangamon district. I was then in the Senate of the United States, and 
was glad to welcome my old friend and companion. Whilst in Con- 
gress, he distinguished himself by his opposition to the Mexican war^ 
taking the side of the common enemy against his own country; 
[" that's true "] and^when he returned home he found that the indigna- 

*Reads: "and both." 
•Reads: "than anything else." 



92 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

tion of the people followed him everywhere, and he was again sub- 
merged, or obliged to retire into private life, forgotten by his former 
friends. ["And will be again."] He came up again in 1854, just in 
time to make this Abolition or Black Republican platform, in com- 
pany with Giddings, Lovejoy, Chase, and Fred Douglas, for the 
Republican party to stand upon. [Laughter, " Hit him again, " etc.] 
Trumbull, too, was one of our own contemporaries. He was born 
and raised in old Connecticut, was bred a Federalist, but, removing to 
Georgia, turned NuUifier when Nullification was popular, and as soon 
as he disposed of his clocks and wound up his business, migrated to 
Illinois, [laughter] turned politician and lawyer here, and made his 
appearance in 1841 as a member of the Legislature. He became 
noted as the author of the scheme to repudiate a large portion of the 
State debt of Illinois, which, if successful, would have brought 
infamy and disgrace upon the fair escutcheon of our glorious State. 
The odium attached to that measure consigned him to oblivion for a 
time. I helped to do it. I walked into a public meeting in the hall of 
the House of Representatives, and replied to his repudiating speeches, 
and resolutions were carried over his head denouncing repudiation, 
and asserting the moral and legal obligation of Illinois to pay every 
dollar of the debt she owed, and every bond that bore her seal. 
[" Good, " and cheers.] Trumbull's malignity has followed me since 
I thus defeated his infamous scheme. 

These two men having formed this combination to Abolitionize the 
old Whig party and the old Democratic party, and put themselves 
into the Senate of the United States, in pursuance of their bargain, are 
now carrying out that arrangement. Matheny states that Trumbull 
broke faith; that the bargain was that Lincoln should be the Senator 
in Shields's^ place, and Trumbull was to wait for mine; [laughter and 
cheers] and the story goes that Trumbull cheated Lincoln, having 
control of four or five Abolitionized Democrats who were holding over 
in the Senate; he would not let them vote for Lincoln, which^^ obliged 
the rest of the Abolitionists to support him in order to secure an 
Abolition Senator. There are a number of authorities for the truth of 
this besides Matheny, and I supose that even Mr. Lincoln will not 
deny it. [Applause and laughter.] 

Mr. Lincoln demands that he shall have the place intended for 

'Reads: "Shields'." 
2Reads: "aud which." 



DOUGLAS AT OTTAWA 93 

Trumbull, as Trumbull cheated him and got his, and Trumbull is 
stumping the State traducing me for the purpose of securing the^ po- 
sition for Lincoln, in order to quiet him. [" Lincoln can never get it."] 
It was in consequence of this arrangement that the Republican Con- 
vention was empanelled to instruct for Lincoln and nobody else, and it 
was on this account that they passed resolutions that he was their first, 
their last, and their only choice. Archy Williams was nowhere, 
Browning was nobody, Wentworth was not to be considered; they had 
no man in the Republican party for the place except Lincoln, for the 
reason that he demanded that they should carry out the arrangement. 
[" Hit him again. "] 

Having formed this new party for the benefit of deserters from 
Whiggery, and deserters from Democracy, and having laid down the 
Abolition platform which I have read, Lincoln now takes his stand 
and proclaims his Abolition doctrines. Let me read a part of them. 
In his speech at Springfield to the Convention which nominated him 
for the Senate, he said: — 

" 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 Gov- 
ernment 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 of slavery will arrest the further spead of it, and place 
it where the public mind shall rest, in the belief that it is in the course of ulti 
mate extinction, or its advocates ivill push it forward till it shall become alike 
lawful in all the States, — old as well as new, North as well as South. " 

["Good," "good," and cheers.] 

I am delighted to hear you Black Republicans say "good. " [Laugh- 
ter and cheers.] I have no doubt that doctrine expresses your senti- 
ments [" Hit them again, " " that's it. "], and I will prove to you now, 
if you will listen to me, that it is revolutionary, and destructive of the 
existence of this Government. [" Hurrah for Douglas, " " good, " and 
cheers.] Mr. Lincoln, in the extract from which I have read, says that 
this Government cannot endure permanently in the same condition in 
which it was made by^its framers, — divided into Free and Slave States. 
He says that it has existed for about seventy years thus divided, and 
yet he tells you that[it cannot endure permanently on the same prin- 
ciples and in the^same relative condition in which our fathers made it. 

iReads: "That" for "the." 



94 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

[" Neither can it. "] Why can it not exist divided into Free and Slave 
States? Washington, Jefferson, Franklin, Madison, Hamilton, Jay, 
and the great men of that day, made this government divided into 
Free States and Slave States, and left each State perfectly free to do 
as it pleased on the subject of slavery. [" Right, right. "] Why can 
it not exist on the same principles on which our fathers made it? 
[" It can. "] They knew when they framed the Constitution that in 
a country as wide and broad as this, with such a variety of climate, 
production, and interest, the people necessarily required different 
laws and institutions in different localities. They knew that the 
laws and regulations which would suit the granite hills of New 
Hampshire would be unsuited to the rice plantations of South Caro- 
lina, [" Right, right. "] and they therefore provided that each State 
•should retain its own Legislature and its own sovereignty, with the 
full and complete power to do as it pleased within its own limits, in 
all that was local and not national. [Applause.] 

One of the reserved rights of the States was the right to regulate the 
relations between master and servant, on the slavery question. At 
the time the Constitution was framed,^ there were thirteen States in 
the Union, twelve of which were slaveholding States and one a Free 
State. Suppose this doctrine of uniformity preached by Mr. Lincoln, 
that the States should all be Free or all be Slave had prevailed, and 
what would have been the result? Of course, the twelve slaveholding 
States would have overruled the one Free State, and slavery would 
have been fastened by a Constitutional provision on every inch of the 
American Republic, instead of being left, as our fathers wisely left it, 
to each State to decide for itself. [" Good, good, " and " three cheers 
for Douglas."] Here I assert that uniformity in the local laws and 
institutions of the different States is neither possible or desirable. If 
uniformity had been adopted when the Government was established, 
it must inevitably have been the uniformity of slavery everywhere, or 
else the uniformity of negro citizenship and negro equality every- 
where. 

We are told by Lincoln that he is utterly opposed to the Dred Scott 
decision, and will not submit to it, for the reason that he says it 
deprives the negro of the rights and privileges of citizenship. [Laugh- 
ter and applause.] That is the first and main reason which he assigns 
for his warfare on the Supreme Court of the United.^States and its 
decision. I ask you, are you in favor of conferring upon the negro the 

1 Reads: "formed" for "framed." 



DOUGLAS AT OTTAWA 95 

rights and privileges of citizenship? [" No, no. "] Do you desire to 
strike out of our State Constitution that clause which keeps slaves and 
free negroes out of the State, and allows the free negroes to flow in, 
['' Never. "] and cover your prairies with black settlements? Do you 
desire to turn this beautiful State into a free negro colony, ["No, 
no. "] in order that when Missouri abolishes slavery she can send one 
hundred thousand emancipated slaves into Illinois, to become citizens 
and voters, on an equality with yourselves? ["Never," "no."] If 
you desire negro citizenship, if you desire to allow them to come into 
the State and settle with the white man, if you desire them to vote 
on an equality with yourselves, and to make them eligible to office, to- 
serve on juries, and to adjudge your rights, then support Mr. Lincoln 
and the Black Republican party, who are in favor of the citizenship of 
the negro. ["Never, never."] For one, I am opposed to negro 
citizenship in any and every form. [Cheers.] I believe this Govern- 
ment was made on the white basis. ["Good."] I believe it was 
made by white men, for the benefit of white men and their posterity 
forever, and I am in favor of confining citizenship to white men, men 
of European birth and descent, instead of conferring it upon negroes, 
Indians, and other inferior races. [" Good for you. " " Douglas for- 
ever. "] 

Mr. Lincoln, following the example and lead of all the little Aboli- 
tion orators, who go around and lecture in the basements of schools 
and churches, reads from the Declaration of Independence that all 
men were created equal, and then asks, How can you deprive a negro 
of that equality which God and the Declaration of Independence 
award^ to him? He and they maintain that negro equality is guar- 
anteed by the laws of God, and that it is asserted in the Declaration of 
Independence. If they think so, of course they have a right to say so^ 
and so vote. I do not question Mr. Lincoln's conscientious behef that 
the negro was made his equal, and hence is his brother; [laughter] but 
for my own part, I do not regard the negro as my equal, and positively 
deny that he is my brother, or any kin to me whatever. ["Never, '^ 
"Hit him again," and cheers.] Lincoln has evidently learned by 
heart Parson Lovejoy's catechism. [Laughter and applause.] He 
can repeat it as well as Farnsworth, and he is worthy of a medal from 
Father Giddings and Fred Douglass for his Abolitionism. [Laughter.] 
He holds that the negro^was born his equal and yours, and that he 

*Reads: "awards." 



96 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

was endowed with equalit}^ by the Almighty, and that no human law 
can deprive him of these rights, which were guaranteed to him by the 
Supreme Ruler of the Universe. 

Now I do not believe that the Almighty ever intended the negro to 
be the equal of the white man. ["Never, never. "] If he did, he has 
been a long time demonstrating the fact. [Cheers.] For thousands of 
years the negro has been a race upon the earth, and during all that 
time, in all latitudes and climates, wherever he has wandered or been 
taken, he has been inferior to the race which he has there met. He 
belongs to an inferior race and must always occupy an inferior posi- 
tion. ["Good," "that's so," etc.] I do not hold that because the 
negro is our inferior that therefore he ought to be a slave. By no 
means can such a conclusion be drawn from what I have said. On the 
contrary, I hold that humanity and Christianity both require that the 
negro shall have and enjoy every right, every privilege, and every 
immunity consistent with the safety of the society in which he lives. 
[" That's so. "] On that point, I presume, there can be no diversity of 
opinion. You and I are bound to extend to our inferior and dependent 
beings every right, every privilege, every facility and immunity con- 
sistent with the public good. 

The question then arises. What rights and privileges are consistent 
with the public good? This is a question which each State and each 
Territory must decide for itself. Illinois has decided it for herself. 
We have provided that the negro shall not be a slave, and we have also 
provided that he shall not be a citizen, but protect him in his civil 
rights, in his life, his person and his property, only depriving him of 
all political rights whatsoever, and refusing to put him on an equality 
with the white man. ["Good."] That pohcy of Illinois is satisfac- 
tory to the Democratic party and to me; and if it were to the Repub- 
licans, there would then be no question upon the subject. But the 
Republicans say that he ought to be made a citizen, and when he 
becomes a citizen he becomes your equal, with all your rights and 
privileges. [" He never shall. "] They assert the Dred Scott deci- 
sion to be monstrous because it denies that the negro is or can be a 
citizen under the Constitution. Now, I hold that Illinois had a right 
to abolish and prohibit slavery as she did, and I hold that Kentucky 
has the same right to continue and protect slavery that Illinois had 
to abolish it. I hold that New York had as much right to abolish 
slavery as Virginia has to continue it, and that each and every State 



DOUGLAS AT OTTAWA 97 

of this Union is a sovereign power, with the right to do as it pleases 
upon this question of slavery, and upon all its domestic institutions. 

Slavery is not the only question which comes up in this controversy. 
There is a far more important one to you, and that is, What shall be 
done with the free negro? We have settled the slavery question as far 
as we are concerned; we have prohibited it in Illinois forever; and in 
doing so, I think we have done wisely, and there is no man in the State 
who would be more strenuous in his opposition to the introduction of 
slavery than I would. [Cheers.] But when we settled it for ourselves 
we exhausted all our power over that subject. We have done our 
whole duty, and can do no more. We must leave each and every 
other State to decide for itself the same question. In relation to the 
policy to be pursued toward^ the free negroes, we have said that they 
shall not vote; whilst Maine, on the other hand, has said that they 
shall vote. Maine is a sovereign State, and has the power to regulate 
the qualifications of voters within her limits. I would never consent 
to confer the right of voting and of citizenship upon a negro ; but still 
I am not going to quarrel with Maine for differing from me in opinion. 
Let Maine take care of her own negroes, and fix the qualifications of her 
own voters to suit herself, without interfering with Illinois, and 
Illinois will not interfere with Maine. So with the State of New York. 
She allows the negro to vote, provided he owns two hundred and fifty 
dollars' worth of property, but not otherwise. While I would not 
make any distinction whatever between a negro who held property 
and one who did not ; yet if the sovereign State of New York chooses to 
make that distinction, it is her business and not mine, and I will not 
quarrel with her for it. She can do as she pleases on this question if 
she minds her own business, and we will do the same thing. 

Now, my friends, if we will only act conscientiously and rigidly 
upon this great principle of popular sovereignty, which guarantees to 
each State and Territory the right to do as it pleases on all things, 
local and domestic, instead of Congress interfering, we will continue at 
peace one with another. Why should Illinois be at war with Missouri, 
or Kentucky with Ohio, or Virginia with New York, merely because 
their institutions differ? Our fathers intended that our institutions 
should differ. They knew that the North and the South, having differ- 
ent climates, productions, and interests, required different institutions. 

iReads: "towards" for "toward." 



98 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

This doctrine of Mr. Lincoln/ of uniformity among the institutions of 
the different states, is a new doctrine, never dreamed of by Washing- 
ton, Madison, or the framers of this Government. Mr. Lincoln and 
the Republican party set themselves up as wiser than these men who 
made this Government, which has flourished for seventy years under 
the principle of popular sovereignty, recognizing the right of each 
State to do as it pleased. Under that principle, we have grown from 
a nation of three or four millions to a nation of about thirty millions of 
people; we have crossed the Alleghany'^ mountains and filled up the 
whole Northwest, turning the prairie into a garden, and building up 
churches and schools, thus spreading civilization and Christianity 
where before there was nothing but savage barbarism. LTnder that 
principle we have become, from a feeble nation, the most powerful on 
the face of the earth; and if we only adhere to that principle, we can 
go forward increasing in territory, in power, in strength, and in 
glory until the Republic of America shall be the North Star that shall 
guide the friends of freedom throughout the civilized world. ["Long 
may you live, " and great applause.] 

And why can we not adhere to the great principle of self-govern- 
ment, upon which our institutions were originally based? ["We 
can. "] I believe that this new doctrine preached by Mr. Lincoln and 
his party will dissolve the Union if it succeeds. They are trying to 
array all the Northern States in one body against the South, to excite 
a sectional w^ar between the Free States and the Slave States, in order 
that the one or the other may be driven to the wall. 

I am told that my time is out. Mr. Lincoln will now address you 
for an hour and a half, and I will then occupy an half hour in replying 
to him. [Three times three cheers were here given for Douglas.] 

Mr. Lincoln's Keply 

Mr. Lincoln then came forward and was greeted with long and 
protracted cheers from fully two-thirds of the audience. This was 
admitted by the Douglas men on the platform. It was some minutes 
before he could make himself heard, even by those on the stand. At 
last he said: 

My Fellow-Citizens: When a man hears himself somewhat mis- 
represented, it provokes him, — at least, I find it so with myself; but 

iReads: "Lincoln's." 

•Reads: "Allegheny" for "Alleghany." 



LINCOLN AT OTTAWA 99 

when misrepresentation becomes very gross and palpable, it is more 
apt to amuse him [laughter.] The first thing I see fit to notice is the 
fact that Judge Douglas alleges, after running through the historj' of 
the old Democratic and the old WTiig parties, that Judge Trumbull 
and myself made an arrangement in 1854, by which I was to have the 
place of General Shields in the United States Senate, and Judge 
Trumbull was to have the place of Judge Douglas. Now, all I have to 
say upon that subject is that I think no man — not even Judge Douglas 
— can prove it, because it is not true [cheers]. I have no doubt he is 
"conscientious" in saying it [laughter]. 

As to those resolutions^ that he took such a length of time to read, 
as being the platform of the Republican party in 1854, I say I never 
had anything to do with them, and I think Trumbull never had 
[renewed laughter]. Judge Douglas cannot show that either^ of us 
ever did have anything to do with them. I beHeve this is true about 
those resolutions. There was a call for a Convention to form a 
Republican party at Springfield, and I think that my friend Mr. 
Lovejoy, who is here upon this stand, had a hand in it. I think this 
is true, and I think if he will remember accurately, he will be able to 
recollect that he tried to get me into it, and I would not go in [cheers 
and laughter]. I beheve it is also true that I went away from Spring- 
field when the Convention was in session , to attend court in Tazewell 
County. It is true they did place my name, though without authority 
upon the committee, and afterward wrote me to attend the meeting 
of the committee; but I refused to do so, and I never had an}i;hing to 
do with that organization. This is the plain truth about all that 
matter of the resolutions. 

Now, about this storj'" that Judge Douglas tells of Trumbull bar- 
gaining to sell out the old Democratic party, and Lincoln agreeing to 
sell out the old ^Tiig party, I have the means of knomng about that : 
[laughter] Judge Douglas cannot have; and I know there is no sub- 
stance to it whatever [applause]. Yet I have no doubt he is "consci- 
entious" about it [laughter]. I know that after Mr. Lovejo}^ got into 
the Legislature that winter, he complained of me that I had told all 
the old WTiigs of^ his district that the old Whig party was good 
enough for them, and some of them voted against him because I told 

*These resolutions are deliberate forgeries by Mr. Douglas. None such were passed by the Spring- 
field convention nor anything like them.— (Ed. Press and TTibune.) 
'Inserts "one" after "either." 
•Reads: "in" for "of." 



100 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

them so. Now, I have no means of totally disproving such charges 
as this which the Judge makes. A man cannot prove a negative; but 
he has a right to claim that when a man makes an affirmative charge, 
he must offer some proof to show the truth of what he says. I cer- 
tainly cannot introduce testimony to show the negative about things, 
but I have a right to claim that if a man says he knows a thing, then 
he must show how he knows it. I always have a right to claim this, 
and it is not satisfactory to me that he may be " conscientious " on the 
subject [cheers and laughter]. 

Now, gentlemen, I hate to waste my time on such things; but in 
regard to that general Abolition tilt that Judge Douglas makes, when 
he says that I was engaged at that time in selling out and Abolition- 
izing the old Whig party, I hope you will permit me to read a part of a 
printed speech that I made then^ at Peoria, which will show altogether 
a different view of the position I took in that contest of 1854. 

A Voice. — " Put on your specs. " 

Mr. Lincoln. — Yes, sir, I am obliged to do so; I am no longer a 
young man [laughter]. 

"This is the repeal of the Missouri Compromise.^ The foregoing history 
may not be precisely accurate in every particular, but I am sure it is sufii- 
ciently so for all the uses I shall attempt to make of it, and in it we have 
before us the chief materials enabling us to correctly judge whether the repeal 
of the Missouri Compromise is right or wrong. 

" I think, and shall try to show, that it is wrong, — v/rong in its direct effect, 
letting slavery into Kansas and Nebraska, and wrong in its prospective prin- 
ciple, allowing it to spread to every other part of the wide world where men 
can be found inchned to take it. 

"This declared indifference, but, as I must think, covert real zeal for the 
spread of slavery, I cannot but hate. I hate it because of the monstrous 
injustice of slavery itself. I hate it because it deprives our republican ex- 
ample of its just influence in the world,— enables the enemies of free institu- 
tions, with plausibiUty, to taunt us as hypocrites; causes the real friends of 
freedom to doubt our sincerity, and especially because it forces so many 
really good men amongst ourselves into an open war with the very funda- 
mental principles of civil liberty, — criticising the Declaration of Independ- 
ence, and insisting that there is no right principle of action but self-interest. 

"Before proceeding let me say, I think I have no prejudice against the 

iReads: "when" for "then." 

^This extract from Mr. Lincoln's Peoria speech of 1854 was read by him in the Ottawa debate, I'ut 
was not reported fully or accurately in either Times or Press Tribune. It is inserted now as necessary 
to a complete report of the debate. (This note appeared in the Follet, Foster & Co. edition, isfio. 
The whole quotation was omitted In the Press and Tribune to the paragraph beginning "When SouUi- 

ern people tell " and the omission was noted, and even the rest was quoted very incorrectly.— 

Editoe.) 



LINCOLN AT OTTAWA 101 

Southern people. They are just what we would be in their situation. If 
slavery did not now exist among them, they would not introduce it. If it did 
now exist among us, we should not instantly give it up. This I believe of the 
masses North and South. Doubtless there are individuals on both sides 
who would not hold slaves under any circumstances; and others who would 
gladly introduce slaveiy anew, if it were out of existence. We know that 
some Southern men do free their slaves, go North, and become tip-top Abo- 
litionists; while some Northern ones go South and become most cruel slave- 
masters. 

" When Southern people tell us they are no more responsible for the orgin of 
slavery than we, I acknowledge the fact. When it is said that the institution 
exists, and that it is very difficult to get rid of it, in any satisfactory way, I 
can understand and appreciate the saying. I surely will not blame them for 
not doing what I should not know how to do myself. If all earthly power 
were given me, I should not know what to do as to the existing institution. 
My first impulse would be to free all the slaves and send them to Liberia, — to 
their own native land. But a moment's reflection would convince me that 
whatever of high hope (as I think there is) there maj^ be in this, in the long 
run, its sudden execution is impossible. If they were all landed there in a 
day, they would all perish in the next ten days; and there are not surplus 
shipping and surplus money enough in the world to carry them there in many 
times ten days. What then? Free them all and keep them among us as 
underlings? Is it quite certain that this betters their condition? I think I 
would not hold one in slavery, at any rate; yet the point is not clear enough to 
me to denounce people upon. What next? Free them, and make them 
pohtically and socially our equals? My own feelings will not admit of this; 
and if mine would, we well know that those of the great mass of white people 
will not. Whether this feeling accords with justice and sound judgment, is 
not the sole question, if, indeed, it is any part of it. A universal feeling, 
whether well or ill founded, cannot be safely disregarded. We cannot, then, 
make them equals. It does seem to me that systems of gradual emancipation 
might be adopted ; but for their tardiness in this, I will not undertake to judge 
our brethern of the South. 

"When they remind us of their constitutional rights, I acknowledge them, 
not grudgingly, but fully and fairly; and I would give them any legislation for 
the reclaiming of their fugitives which should not, in its stringency, be more 
likely to carry a free man into slavery, than our ordinary criminal laws are to 
hang an innocent one [loud applause]. 

"But all this, to my judgment, furnishes no more excuse for permitting 
slavery to go into our own Free Territory than it would for reviving the 
African slave trade by law. The law which forbids the bringing of slaves 
from Africa, and that which has so long forbidden the taking of them to Ne- 
braska, can hardly be distinguished on any moral principle; and the repeal 
of the former could find quite as plausible excuses as that of the latter. '^^ 

I have reason to know that Judge Douglas knows that I said this. 
I think he has the answer here to one of the questions he put to me. 

^This clause was not reported in the Tribune account. 



102 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

I do not mean to allow him to catechise me unless he pays back for it 
in kind. I will not answer questions one after another, unless he 
reciprocates; but as he has made this inquiry, and I have answered it 
before, he has got it without my getting anything in return. He has 
got my answer on the Fugitive-Slave law. 

Now, gentlemen, I don't want to read at any greater length; but 
this is the true complexion of all I have ever said in regard to the insti- 
tution of slavery and the black race. This is the whole of it; and 
anything that argues me into his idea of perfect social and political 
equality with the negro, is but a specious and fantastic arrangement of 
words, by which a man can prove a horse-chestnut to be a chestnut 
horse. [Laughter]. 

I will say here, while upon this subject, that I have no purpose, 
directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the 
States where it exists. I believe I have no lawful right to do so, and I 
have no inclination to do so. I have no purpose to introduce political 
and social equality between the white and the black races. There is 
a physical difference between the two which, in my judgement, will 
probably forever forbid their living together upon the footing of per- 
fect equality; and inasmuch as it becomes a necessity that there must 
be a difference, I, as well as Judge Douglas, am in favor of the race to 
which I belong having the superior position. I have never said any- 
thing to the contrary, but I hold that, notwithstanding all this, there 
is no reason in the world wh}^ the negro is not entitled to all the 
natural rights enumerated in the Declaration of Independence, — the 
right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. [Loud cheers.] 
I hold that he is as much entitled to these as the white man. I agree 
with Judge Douglas he is not my equal in many respects, — certainly 
not in color, perhaps not in moral or intellectual endowment. But in 
the right to eat the bread, without the leave of anybody else, which 
his own hand earns, he is my equal, and the equal of Judge Douglas, 
and the equal of every living man. [Great applause.] 

Now I pass on to consider one or two more of these little follies. 
The Judge is wofuUy at fault about his early friend Lincoln being a 
" grocery -keeper. " [Laughter.] I don't know as it would be a 
great sin, if I had been; but he is mistaken. Lincoln never kept a 
grocery anywhere in the world. [Laughter.] It is true that Lincoln 
did work the latter part of the winter in a little still-house, up at the 
head of a hollow. [Roars of laughter.] 



LINCOLN AT OTTAWA 103 

And so I think my friend the Judge is equally at fault when he 
charges me at the time when I was in Congress of having opposed our 
soldiers who were fighting in the Mexican war. The Judge did not 
make his charge very distinctly, but I can tell you what he can prove, 
by referring to the record. You remember I was an old Whig, and 
whenever the Democratic party tried to get me to vote that the war 
had been rightously begun by the President, I would not do it. But 
whenever they asked for any money, or land-warrants, or anything to 
pay the soldiers there, during all the time, I gave the same vote that 
Judge Douglas did. [Loud applause.] You can think as you please 
as to whether that was consistent. Such is the truth; and the Judge 
has the right to make all he can out of it. But when he, by a general 
charge, conveys the idea that I withheld supplies from the soldiers 
who were fighting in the Mexican war, or did anything else to hinder 
the soldiers, he is, to say the least, grossly and altogether mistaken, as 
a consultation of the records will prove to him. 

As I have not used up so much of my time as I had supposed, I will 
dwell a little longer upon one or two of these minor topics upon which 
the Judge has spoken. He has read from my speech in Springfield, in 
which I say " that a house divided against itself cannot stand. " Does 
the Judge say it can stand? [Laughter.] I don't know whether he 
does or not. The Judge does not seem to be attending to me just now 
but I would like to know if it is his opinion that a house divided against 
itself can stand. If he does, then there is a question of veracity, not 
between him and me, but between the Judge and an authority of a 
somewhat higher character. [Laughter and applause.] 

Now, my friends, I ask your attention to this matter for the purpose 
of saying something seriously. I know that the Judge may readily 
enough agree with me that the maxim which was put forth by the 
Saviour is true, but he may 'allege that I misapply it ; and the Judge has 
a right to urge that, in my application, I do misapply it, and then I 
have a right to show that I do not misapply it. When he undertakes 
to say that because I think this nation, so far as the question of 
slavery is concerned, will all become one thing or all the other, I am in 
favor of bringing about a dead uniformity in the various States, in all 
their institutions, he argues erroneously. The great variety of the 
local institutions in the States, springing from differences in the soil, 
differences in the face of the country, and in the climate, are bonds of 
Union. They do not make " a house divided against itself, " but they 



104 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

make a house united. If they produce in one section of the country 
what is called for by the wants of another section, and this other 
section can supply the wants of the first, they are not matters of 
discord, but bonds of union, true bonds of union. 

But can this question of slavery be considered as among these va- 
rieties in the institutions of the country? I leave it to you to say 
whether, in the history of our Government, this institution of slavery 
has not always failed to be a bond of union, and, on the contrary, 
been an apple of discord and an element of division in the house. 
[Cries of "yes, yes," and applause.] I ask you to consider whether, 
so long as the moral constitution of men's minds shall continue to be 
the same, after this generation and assemblage shall sink into the 
grave, and another race shall arise, with the same moral and intel- 
lectual development we have, — whether, if that institution is standing 
in the same irritating position in which it now is, it will not continue 
an element of division? [Cries of "Yes, yes. "] If so, then I have a 
right to say that, in regard to this question, the Union is a house 
divided against itself; and when the Judge reminds me that I have 
often said to him that the institution of slavery has existed for 
eighty years in some States, and yet it does not exist in some others, 
I agree to the fact, and I account for it by looking at the position in 
which our fathers originally placed it, — restricting it from the new 
Territories where it had not gone, and legislating to cut off its source 
by the abrogation of the slave-trade, thus putting the seal of legisla- 
tion against its spread. 

The public mind did rest in the belief that it was in the course of 
ultimate extinction. [Cries of " Yes, yes. "] But lately, I think — and 
in this I charge nothing on the Judge's motives — lately, I think, that 
he, and those acting with him, have placed that institution on a new 
basis, which looks to the perpetuity and nationalization of slavery. 
[Loud cheers.] And while it is placed upon this new basis, I say, and 
I have said that I believe we shall not have peace upon the question 
until the opponents of slavery arrest the further 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, on the other hand, that its advocates will 
push it forward until it shall become alike lawful in all the States, old 
as well as new, North as well as South. Now, I believe if we could 
arrest the spread, and place it where Washington and Jefferson and 



LINCOLN AT OTTAWA 105 

Madison placed it, it would be in the course of ultimate extinction, and 
the public mind would, as for eighty years past, believe that it was in 
the course of ultimate extinction. The crisis would be past, and the 
institution might be let alone for a hundred years, if it should live so 
long, in the States where it exists ; yet it would be going out of exis- 
tence in the way best for both the black and the white races. [Great 
cheering.] 

A voice. — ''Then do you repudiate Popular Sovereignty?" 
Mr. Lincoln. — Well, then, let us talk about Popular Sovereignty. 
[Laughter.] What is Popular Sovereignty? [Cries of "A Humbug, " 
" a humbug. "] Is it the right of the people to have slavery or not 
have it, as they see fit, in the Territories? I will state — and I have an 
able man to watch me — my understanding is that Popular Sovereignty, 
as now applied to the question of slavery, does allow the people of 
a Territory to have slavery if they want to, but does not allow them 
not to have it if they do not want it. [Applause and laughter.] I do 
not mean that if this vast concourse of people were in a Territory of 
the United States, any one of them would be obliged to have a slave 
if he did not want one; but I do say that, as I understand the Dred 
Scott decision, if any one man wants slaves, all the rest have no way 
of keeping that one man from holding them. 

When I made my speech at Springfield, of which the Judge com- 
plains, and from which he quotes, I really was not thinking of the 
things w'hich 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 any- 
thing to bring about a political and social equality of the black and 
the white races. It never occured to me that I was doing anything, 
or favoring 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 that 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. But can it be true that placing this institution 
upon the original basis — the basis upon which our fathers placed it — 
can have any tendency to set the Northern and the Southern States at 
war with one another, or that it can have any tendency to make the 
people of Vermont raise sugar-cane, because they raise it in Louisiana; 
or that it can compel the people of Illinois to cut pine logs on the 



106 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Grand Prairie, where they will not grow, because they cut pine logs 
in Maine, where they do grow? [Laughter.] 

The Judge says this is a new principle started in regard to this ques- 
tion. Does the Judge claim that he is working on the plan of the found- 
ers of the government? I think he says in some of his speeches — in- 
deed, I have one here now — that he saw evidence of a policy to allow 
slavery to be south of a certain line, while north of it it should be 
excluded, and he saw an indisposition on the part of the country to 
stand upon that policy, and therefore he sat about studying the sub- 
ject upon original principles, and upon original principles he got up the 
Nebraska bill! I am fighting it upon these "original principles," — 
fighting it in the Jeffersonian, Washingtonian, and Madisonian fashion. 
[Laughter and applause.] 

Now, my friends, I wish you to attend for a little while to one or 
two other things in that Springfield speech. My main object was to 
show, so far as my humble ability was capable of showing, to the 
people of this country, what I believed was the truth, — that there was 
a tendency, if not a conspiracy, among those who have engineered this 
slavery question for the last four or five years, to make slavery per- 
petual and universal in this nation. Having made that speech prin- 
cipally for that object, after arranging the evidences_ that I thought 
tended to prove my proposition, I concluded with this bit of com- 
ment : — 

" We cannot absolutely know that these exact adaptations are the result of 
preconcert; but when we see a lot of framed timbers, different portions of 
which we know have been gotten out at different times and places, and by 
different workmen, — Stephen, FrankUn, Roger, and James, for instance, — 
and when we see these timbers joined together, and see they exactly make the 
frame of a house or a mill, all the tenons and mortises exactly fitting, and all 
the lengths and proportions of the different pieces exactly adapted to their 
respective places, and not a piece too many or too few, — not omitting even 
the scaffolding, — or if a single piece be lacking, we see the place in the frame 
exactly fitted and prepared yet to bring such piece in, — in such a case we feel 
it impossible not to beheve that Stephen and Frankhn and Roger and James 
all understood one another from the beginning, and all worked upon a com- 
mon plan or draft drawn before the first blow was struck." [Great cheers.] 

When my friend Judge Douglas came to Chicago on the 9th of July, 
this speech having been delivered on the 16th of June, he made an 
harangue there, in which he took hold of this speech of mine, showing 
that he had carefully read it; and while he paid no attention to this 
matter at all, but complimented me as being a "kind, amiable, and 



LINCOLN AT OTTAWA 107 

intelligent gentleman, " notwithstanding I had said this, he goes on and 
deduces,^ or draws out, from my speech this tendency of mine to set 
the States at war with one another, to make all the institutions uni- 
form, and set the niggers and white people to marrying together. 
[Laughter.] Then, as the Judge had complimented me with these 
pleasant titles (I must confess to my weakness), I was a little "taken " 
[laughter], for it came from a great man. I was not very much accus- 
tomed to flattery, and it came the sweeter to me. I was rather like 
the Hoosier, with the gingerbread, when he said he reckoned he loved 
it better than any other man, and got less of it. [Roars of laughter.] 
As the Judge had so flattered me, I could not make up my mind that 
he meant to deal unfairly with me; so I went to work to show him that 
he misunderstood the whole scope of my speech, and that I really 
never intended to set the people at war with one another. 

As an illustration, the next time I met him which was at Springfield, 
I used this expression, that I claimed no right under the Constitution, 
nor had I any inclination, to enter into the Slave States, and interfere 
with the institutions of slavery. He says upon that: Lincoln will 
not enter into the Slave States, but will go to the banks of the Ohio, on 
this side, and shoot over! [Laughter.] He runs on, step by step, in 
the horse-chestnut style ^ of argument, until in the Springfield speech 
he says : " Unless he shall be successful in firing his batteries, until he 
shall have extinguished slavery in all the States, the Union shall be 
dissolved. " Now, I don't think that was exactly the way to treat a 
" kind, amiable, intelligent gentleman. " [Roars of laughter.] I know 
if I had asked the Judge to show when or where it was I had said that 
if I did'nt succeed in firing into the Slave States until slavery should 
be extinguished, the Union should be dissolved, he could not have 
shown it. I understand what he would do. He would say," I don't 
mean to quote from you, but this was the result of what you say. " 
But I have the right to ask, and I do ask now, Did you not put it in 
such a form that an ordinary reader or listener would take it as an 
expression from me? [Laughter.] 

In a speech at Springfield, on the night of the 17th, I thought I 
might as well attend to my own business a little, and I recalled his 
attention as well as I could to this charge of conspiracy to nationalize 
slavery. I called his attention to the fact that he had acknowledged, 
in my hearing twice, that he had carefully read the speech, and, in the 

iReads: "eliminates." 
aReads: "plan." 



108 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

language of the lawyers, as he had twice read the speech, and still had 
put in no plea or answer, I took a default on him . I insisted that I had 
a right then to renew that charge of conspiracy. Ten days afterward 
I met the Judge at Clinton, — that is to say, I was on the ground, but 
not in the discussion, — and heard him make a speech. Then he comes 
in with his plea to this charge, for the first time ; and his plea when put 
in; as well as I can recollect it, amounted to this : that he never had 
any talk with Judge Taney or the President of the United States with 
regard to the Dred Scott decision before it was made; I (Lincoln) 
ought to know that the man who makes a charge without knowing it 
to be true, falsifies as much as he who knowingly tells a falsehood; and, 
lastly, that he would pronounce the whole thing a falsehood; but he 
would make no personal application of the charge of falsehood, not 
because of any regard for the "kind, amiable, intelligent gentleman," 
but because of his own personal self-respect! [Roars of laughter.] 
I have understood since then (but [turning to Judge Douglas] will 
not hold the Judge to it if he is not willing) that he has broken through 
the '' self-respect, " and has got to saying the thing out. The Judge nods 
to me that it is so. [Laughter.] It is fortunate for me that I can keep 
as good-humored as I do, when the Judge acknowledges that he has 
been trying to make a question of veracity with me. I know the 
Judge is a great man, while I am only a small man, but I feel that I 
have got him. [Tremendous cheering.] I demur to that plea. I 
waive all objections that it was not filed till after default was taken, 
and demur to it upon the merits. What if Judge Douglas never did 
talk with Chief Justice Taney and the President before the Dred Scott 
decision was made, does it follow that he could not have had as perfect 
an understanding without talking as with it? I am not disposed to 
stand upon my legal advantage. I am disposed to take his denial as 
being like an answer in chancery, that he neither had any knowledge, 
information, or belief in the existence, of such a conspiracy. I am 
disposed to take his answer as being as broad as though he had put it 
in these words. And now, I ask, even if he had done so, have not I a 
right to prove it on him, and to offer the evidence of more than two 
witnesses, by whom to prove it; and if the evidence proves the 
existence of the conspiracy, does his broad answer denying all know- 
ledge, information, or belief, disturb the fact? It can only show that 
he was used by conspirators, and was not a leader of them. [Vocif- 
erous cheering.] 



LINCOLN AT OTTAWA 109 

Now, in regard to his reminding me of the moral rule that persons 
who tell what they do not know to be true, falsify as much as those 
who knowingly tell falsehoods. I remember the rule, and it must be 
borne ia mind that in what I have read to you, I do not say that I 
know such a conspiracy to exist. To that I reply, / believe it. If the 
Judge says that I do not believe it, then he says what he does not know 
and falls within his owti rule, that he who asserts a thing which he 
does not know to be tnie, falsifies as much as he who knowingly teUs 
a falsehood. 

I want to call your attention to a little discussion on that branch 
of the case, and the evidence which brought my mind to the conclu- 
sion which I expressed as my belief. If, in arraying that evidence, I 
had stated anything which was false or erroneous, it needed but that 
Judge Douglas should point it out, and I would have taken it back, 
with all the kindness in the world. I do not deal in that way. If I 
have brought forward an^-thing not a fact, if he will point it out, it 
will not even i-uffle me to take it back. But if he will not point out 
anvthing erroneous in the evidence, is it not rather for him to show, 
by a comparison of the evidence, that I have reasoned falsely, than to 
call the "kind, amiable, intelligent gentleman" a liar? [Cheers and 
laughter.] If I have reasoned to a false conclusion, it is the vocation 
of an able debater to show by argument that I have wandered to an 
erroneous conclusion. 

I want to ask your attention to a portion of the Nebraska bill, 
which Judge Douglas has quoted: "It being the true intent and 
meaning of this Act, not to legislate slavery into any Territory or 
State, nor to exclude it therefrom, but to leave the people thereof 
perfecth' free to form and regulate their domestic institutions in their 
ovm way, subject only to the Constitution of the United States." 
Thereupon Judge Douglas and others began to argue in favor of 
"Popular Sovereignty, " — the right of the people to have slaves if the}- 
wanted them, and to exclude slavery if they did not want them. 
" But, " said, in substance, a Senator from Ohio (Mr. Chase, I believe), 
" we more than suspect that you do not mean to allow the people to 
exclude slavery if they wish to; and if you do mean it, accept an 
amendment which I propose, expressh- authorizing the people to 
exclude slavery. " 

I believe I have the amendment here before me, which was offered, 
and under which the people of the Territory, through their proper 



110 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

representatives, might, if they saw fit, prohibit the existence of slav- 
ery therein. And now I state it as a fact, to be taken back if there is 
any mistake about it, that Judge Douglas and those acting with him 
voted that amendment down. [Tremendous applause.] I now think 
that those men who voted it down had a real reason for doing so. They 
know what that reason was. It looks to us, since we have seen the 
Dred Scott decision pronounced, holding that ''under the Constitu- 
tion, " the people cannot exclude slavery, — I say it looks to outsiders, 
poor, simple, ''amiable, intelligent gentlemen," [great laughter] as 
though the niche was left as a place to put that Dred Scott decision in, 
[laughter and cheers] — a niche which would have been spoiled by 
adopting the amendment. And now, I say again, if this was not the 
reason, it will avail the judge much more to calmly and good-humor- 
edly point out to these people what that other reason was for voting 
the amendment down, than, swelling himself up, to vociferate that he 
may be provoked to call somebody a liar. [Tremendous applause.] 

Again : There is in that same quotation from the Nebraska bill this 
clause : " It being the true intent and meaning of this bill not to legis- 
late slavery into any Territory or State." I have always been 
puzzled to know what business the word "State" had in that con- 
nection. Judge Douglas knows. He put it there. He knows what 
he put it there for. We outsiders cannot say what he put it there for. 
The law they were passing was not about States, and was not making 
provision for States. What was it placed there for? After seeing the 
Dred Scott decision, which holds that the people cannot exclude 
slavery from a Territory, if another Dred Scott decision shall come, 
holding that they cannot exclude it from a State, we shall discover 
that when the word was originally put there, it was in view^ of some- 
thing which was to come in due time, we shall see that it was the 
other half of something. [Applause.] I now say again, if there is any 
different reason for putting it there. Judge Douglas, in a good -humored 
way, without calling anybody a liar, can tell what the reason was. 
[Renewed cheers.] 

When the Judge spoke at Clinton, he came very near making a 
charge of falsehood against me. He used, as I found it printed in a 
newspaper, which, I remember, was very nearly like the real speech, 
the following language : — 

" I did not answer the charge [of conspiracy] before, for the reason that I 
did not suppose there was a man in America with a heart so corrupt as to 



LINCOLN AT OTTAWA 111 

believe such a charge could be true. I have too much respect for Mr. Lincoln 
to suppose he is serious in making the charge." 

I confess this is rather a curious view, that out of respect for me he 
should consider I was making what I deemed rather a grave charge, in 
fun. [Laughter.] I confess it strikes me rather strangely. But I let 
it pass. As the Judge did not for a moment believe that there was a 
man in America whose heart was so "corrupt" as to make such a 
charge, and as he places me among the '' men in America, " who have 
hearts base enough to make such a charge, I hope he will excuse me 
if I hunt out another charge very like this; and if it should turn out 
that in hunting I should find that other, and it should turn out to be 
Judge Douglas himself who made it, I hope he will reconsider this 
question of the deep corruption of heart he has thought fit to ascribe 
to me. [Great applause and laughter.] In Judge Douglas's speech 
of March 22, 1858, which I hold in my hand, he says: — 

" In this connection there is another topic to which I desire to allude. I 
seldom refer to the course of newspapers, or notice the articles which they pub- 
lish in regard to myself ; but the course of the Washington Union has been so 
extraordinary, for the last two or three months, that I think it well enough to 
make some allusion to it. It has read me out of the Democratic party every 
other day, at least for two or three months, and keeps reading me out [laugh- 
ter], and, as if it had not succeeded, still continues to read me out, using such 
terms as 'traitor,' 'renegade,' 'deserter,' and other kind and polite epithets 
of that nature. Sir, I have no vindication to make of my Democracj^ against 
the Washington Union, or any other newspaper. I am willing to allow my 
history and action for the last twenty years to speak for themselves as to my 
pohtical principles and my fidelity to political obligations. The Washington 
Union has a personal grievance. When its editor was nominated for public 
printer, I declined to vote for him, and stated that at some time I might give 
my reasons for doing so. Since I dechned to give that vote, this scurrilous 
abuse, these vindictive and constant attacks have been repeated almost daily 
on me. Will my friend from Michigan read the article to which I allude?" 

This is a part of the speech. You must excuse me from reading 
the entire article of the Washington Union, as Mr. Stuart read it for 
Mr. Douglas. The Judge goes on and sums up, as I think, correctly : — 

"Mr. President, you here find several distinct propositions advanced boldly 
by the Washington Union editorially, and apparently authoritatively ; and any 
man who questions any of them is denounced as an Abolitionist, a Free-soiler, 
a fanatic. The propositions are, first, that the primary object of all govern- 
ment at its original institution is the protection of person and property; sec- 
ond, that the Constitution of the United States declares that the citizens of 
each State shall be entitled to all the privileges and immunities of citizens in 



112 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

the several States; and that, therefore, thirdly, all State laws, whether organic 
or otherwise, which'prohibit the citizens of one State from settling in another 
with their slave property, and especially declaring it forfeited, are direct vio- 
lations of the original intention of the Government and Constitution of the 
United States; and, fourth, that the emancipation of the slaA^es of the North- 
ern States was a gross outrage of^ the rights of property, inasmuch as it was 
involuntarily done on the part of the owner. 

" Remember that this article was pubhshed in the Union on the 17th of No- 
vember, and on the 18th appeared the first article giving the adhesion of the 
Union to the Lecompton Constitution. It was in these words: — 

" ' Kansas and her Constitution. — The vexed question is settled. The 
problem is solved. The dead point of danger is passed. All serious trouble 
to Kansas affairs is over and gone' — 

" And a column nearly of the same sort. Then, when you come to look into 
the Lecompton Constitution, you find the same doctrine incorporated in it 
which was put forth editorially in the Union. What is it? 

"'Article 7, Section 1. The right of property is befoi-e and higher than 
any constitutional sanction ; and the right of the owner of a slave to such slave 
and its increase is the same and as inviolable as the right of the owner of any 
property whatever.' 

" Then in the schedule is a provision that the Constitution may be amended 
after 1864 by a two-thirds vote. 

"'But no alteration shall be made to affect the right of property in the 
ownership of slaves. ' 

" It will be seen by these clauses in the Lecompton Constitution that they 
are identical in spirit with the authoritative article in the Washington Union of 
the day previous to its indorsement of this Constitution. " 

I pass over some portions of the speech, and I hope that any one 
who feels interested in this matter will read the entire section of the 
speech, and see whether I do the Judge injustice He proceeds: — 

" When I saw that article in the Union of the 17th of November, followed 
by the glorification of the';Lecompton Constitution on the 18th of November, 
and this clause in the Constitution asserting the doctrine that a State has no 
right to prohibit slavery within its limits, I saw that there was a fatal blow 
being struck at the sovereignty of the States of this Union. " 

I stop the quotation there, again requesting that it may all be read. 
I have read all of the portion I desire to comment upon. What is this 
charge that the Judge thinks I must have a very corrupt heart to 
make? It was a purpose on the part of certain high functionaries to 
make it impossible for the people of one State to prohibit the people of 
any other State from entering it with their " property, " so called, and 
making it a Slave State. In other words it was a charge implying a 

iReads: "on" for "of." 



LINCOLN AT OTTAWA 113 

design to make. the institution of slavery national. And now I ask 
your attention to what Judge Douglas has himself done here. I know 
he made that part of the speech as a reason why he had refused to vote 
for a certain man for public printer; but when we get at it, the charge 
itself is the very one I made against him, that he thinks I am so corrupt 
for uttering. Now, whom does he make that charge against? Does 
he make it against that newspaper editor merely? No; he says it is 
identical in spirit with the Lecompton Constitution, and so the framers 
of that Constitution are brought in with the editor of the newspaper 
in that "fatal blow being struck." [Cheers and laughter.] He did 
not call it a " conspiracy. " In his language, it is a " fatal blow being 
stinick. " And if the words carry the meaning better when changed 
from a "conspiracy" into a "fatal blow being struck," I will change 
my expression, and call it "fatal blow being struck." We see the 
charge made not merely against the editor of the Union, but all the 
framers of the Lecompton Constitution; and not only so, but the article 
was an authoritative article. By whose authority? Is there any 
question but he means it was by the authority of the President and 
his Cabinet, — the Administration? 

Is there any sort of question but that^ he means to make that charge? 
Then there are the editors of the Union, the framers of the Lecompton 
Constitution, the President of the United States and his Cabinet, and 
all the supporters of the Lecompton Constitution, in Congress and out 
of Congress, who are all involved in this " fatal blow being struck. " 
I commend to Judge Douglas's consideration the question of how 
corrupt a man's heart must be to make such a charge! [Vociferous 
cheering.] 

Now, my friends, I have but one branch of the subject, in the httle 
time I have left, to which to call your attention ; and as I shall come 
to a close at the end of that branch, it is probable that I shall not 
occupy quite all the time allotted to me. Although on these questions 
I would like to talk twice as long as I have, I could not enter upon 
another head and discuss it properly without running over my time. 
I ask the question^ of the people here assembled and elsewhere to the 
course that Judge Douglas is pursuing every day as bearing upon this 
question of making slavery national. Not going back to the records, 
but taking the speeches he makes, the speeches he made yesterday and 

lOmits: "that." aReads: "attention" for "question." 



114 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

day before, and^makes constantly all over the country, — I ask your 
attention to them. In the first place, what is necessary to make the 
institution national? Not war. There is no danger that the people 
of Kentucky will shoulder their muskets, and, with a young nigger 
stuck on every bayonet, march into Illinois and force them upon us. 
There is no danger of our going over there and making war upon them. 
Then what is necessary for the nationalization of slavery? It is 
simply the next Dred Scott decision. It is merely for the Supreme 
Court to decide that no State under the Constitution can exclude it, 
just as they have already decided that under the Constitution neither 
Congress nor the Territorial Legislature can do it. When that is 
decided and acquiesced in, the whole thing is done. 

This being true, and this being the way, as I think, that slavery 
is to be made national, let us consider what Judge Douglas is doing 
every day to that end. In the first place, let us see what influence he 
is exerting on public sentiment. In this and like communities, public 
sentiment is everything. With public sentiment, nothing can fail; 
without it, nothing can succeed. Consequently, he who moulds 
public sentiment, goes deeper than he who enacts statutes or pro- 
nounces decisions. He makes statutes and decisions possible or 
impossible to be executed. This must be borne in mind, as also the 
additional fact that Judge Douglas is a man of vast influence, so great 
that it is enough for many men to profess to believe anything, when 
they once find out that Judge Douglas professes to believe it. Con- 
sider also the attitude he occupies at the head of a large party, — a 
party which he claims has a majority of all the voters of the country. 
This man sticks to a decision which forbids the people of a Territory 
from excluding slavery, and he does so, not because he says it is right 
in itself, — he does not give any opinion on that, — but because it has 
been decided by the court ; and being decided by the court, he is, and 
you are, bound to take it in your political action as law, not that he 
judges at all of its merits, but because a decision of the court is to 
him a "Thus saith the Lord." He places it on that ground alone; 
and you will bear in mind that thus committing himself unreservedly 
to this decision commits him to the next one just as firmly as to this. 
He did not commit himself on account of the merit or demerit of the 
decision, but it is a "Thus saith the Lord." The next decision, as 
much as this, will be a "Thus saith the Lord. " [Applause.] 



LINCOLN AT OTTAWA 115 

There is nothing that can divert or turn him away from this decision 
It is nothing that I point out to him that his great prototype, General 
Jackson, did not beheve in the binding force of decisions. It is noth- 
ing to him that Jefferson did not so beheve. I have said that I have 
often heard him approve of Jackson's course in disregarding the 
decision of the Supreme Court pronouncing a National Bank con- 
stitutional. He says, I did not hear him say so. He denies the 
accuracy of my recollection. I say he ought to know better than I, 
but I will make no question about this thing, though it still seems to 
me that I heard him say it twenty times. [Applause and laughter.] 
I will tell him, though, that he now claims to stand on the Cincinnati 
platform, which affirms that Congress cannot charter a National 
Bank, in the teeth of that old standing decision that Congress can 
charter a bank. 

And I remind him of another piece of history on the question of 
respect for judicial decisions: and it is a piece of Illinois history be- 
longing to a time when the large party to which Judge Douglas 
belonged were displeased with a decision of the Supreme Court of 
Illinois ; because they had decided that a Governor could not remove 
a Secretary of State. You will find the whole story in Ford's History 
of Illinois, and I know that Judge Douglas will not deny that he was 
then in favor of overslaughing that decision by the mode of adding 
five new judges, so as to vote down the four old ones. Not only so, 
but it ended in the Judge's sitting down on that very bench as one of the 
five new judges to break down the four old ones. [Cheers and laughter.] 
It was in this way precisely that he got his title of judge. Now, when 
the Judge tells me that men appointed conditionally to sit as members 
of a court will have to be catechised beforehand upon some subject, 
I say, " You know, Judge ; you have tried it. " [Laughter.] When he 
says a court of this kind will lose the confidence of all men, will be 
prostituted and disgraced by such a proceeding, I say, "You know 
best. Judge; you have been through the mill." [Great laughter.] 

But I cannot shake Judge Douglas's teeth loose from the Dred Scott 
decision. Like some obstinate animal (I mean no disrespect) that 
will hang on when he has once got his teeth fixed, you ma}' cut off a 
leg, or you may tear away an arm, still he will not relax his hold. And 
so I may point out to the Judge, and say, that he is bespattered all 
over, from the beginning of his political life to the present time, with 
attacks upon judicial decisions; I may cut off hmb after limb of his 



116 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

public record, and strive to wrench him from a single dictum of the 
court, — yet I cannot divert him from it. He hangs, to the last, to the 
Dred Scott decision. [Loud cheers.] These things show there is a 
purpose strong as death and eternity for which he adheres to this 
decision, and for which he will adhere to all other decisions of the same 
court. [Vociferous applause.] 

A Hibernian. — " Give us something besides Drid Scott. " 
Mr. Lincoln. — Yes; no doubt you want to hear something that 
don't hurt. [Laughter and applause.] Now, having spoken of the 
Dred Scott decision, one more word, and I am done. Henry Clay, 
my beau idecd of a statesman, the man for whom I fought all my 
humble life, — Henry Clay once said of a class of men who would repress 
all tendencies to libert}^ and ultimate emancipation, that they must, if 
they would do this, go back to the era of our Independence, and 
muzzle the cannon which thunders its annual joyous return; they 
must blow out the moral lights around us; they must penetrate the 
human soul, and eradicate there the love of liberty; and then, and not 
till then, could they perpetuate slavery in this country ! [Loud cheers.] 
To my thinking, Judge Douglas is, by his example and vast influence, 
doing that very thing in this community, [cheers] when he says that 
the negro has nothing in the Declaration of Independence. Henry 
Clay plainly understood the contrary. 

Judge Douglas is going back to the era of our Revolution, and to 
the extent of his ability, muzzling the cannon which thunders its 
annual joyous return. When he invites any people, willing to have 
slavery, to establish it, he is blowing out the moral lights around us. 
[Cheers.] When he says he " cares not whether slavery is voted down 
or voted up, " — that it is a sacred right of self-government, — he is, in 
my judgment, penetrating the human soul and eradicating the light 
of reason and the love of liberty in this American people. [Enthu- 
siastic and continued applause.] And now I will only say that when, 
by all these means and appliances, Judge Douglas shall succeed in 
bringing public sentiment to an exact accordance with his own views; 
when these vast assemblages shall echo back all these sentiments; 
when they shall come to repeat his views and to avow his principles, 
and to say all that he says on these might}' questions, — then it needs 
only the formality of the second Dred Scott decision, which he en- 
dorses in advance, to make slavery alike lawful in all the States, old 
as well as new, North as well as South. 



DOUGLAS AT OTTAWA 117 

My friends, that ends the chapter. The Judge can take his half- 
hour. 

As Mr. Lincoln retired, three cheers were proposed and given with 
tremendous volume — followed by three more, and then three more, 
extending to all parts of the public square. 

Mr. Douglas's Re.joinder 

Fellow-Citizens: I will now occupy the half -hour allotted to me 
in replying to Mr. Lincoln. The first point to which I will call your 
attention is as to what I said about the organization of the Republican 
party in 1854, and the platform that was formed on the 5th of October 
of that year, and I will then put the question to Mr. Lincoln, whether 
or not he approves of each article in that platform, [" He answered that 
already. "] and ask for a specific answer. [" He has answered, " "you 
cannot make him answer, " etc.] I did not charge him with being a 
member of the committee which reported that platform. [" Yes, you 
did. "] I charged that that platform was the platform of the Repub- 
lican party adopted by them. The fact that it was the platform of the 
Republican party is not denied; but Mr. Lincoln now says that al- 
though his name was on the committee which reported it, he does not 
think he was there, but thinks he was in Tazewell, holding court. 
["He said he was there."] Gentlemen, I ask j'our silence, and no 
interruptions. Now, I want to remind Mr. Lincoln that he was at 
Springfield when that Convention was held and those resolutions 
were adopted. ["You can't do it." "He wasn't there," etc.] 

[Mr. Glover, chairman of the Republican Committee: I hope no 
Republican will interrupt Mr. Douglas. The masses listened to Mr. 
Lincoln attentively and as respectable men we ought now to hear Mr. 
Douglas and without interruption. ("Good.")] 

Mr. Douglas resuming: 

The point I am going to remind Mr. Lincoln of is this : that after I 
had made my speech in 1854, during the Fair, he gave me notice that 
he was going to reply to me the next day. I was sick at the time, but 
I stayed over in Springfield to hear his reply, and to reply to him. On 
that day this very Convention, the resolutions adopted by which I 
have read, was to meet in the Senate chamber. He spoke in the hall 
of the House; and when he got through his speech, — my recollection 
is distinct, and I shall never forget it, — Mr. Codding walked in as I 

—5 



118 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

took the stand to reply, and gave notice that the Republican State 
convention would meet instantly in the Senate chamber, and called 
upon the Republicans to retire there and go into this very Convention, 
instead of remaining and listening to me. [Three cheers for Douglas.] 

Mr. Lincoln, interrupting, excitedly and angrily. — Judge, add that 
I went along with them. [This interruption was made in a pitiful, 
mean, sneaking way, as Lincoln floundered around the stand.] 

Mr. Douglas. — Gentlemen, Mr. Lincoln tells me to add that he 
went along with them to the senate chamber. I will not add that, 
because I do not know whether he did or not. 

Mr. Lincoln, again interrupting. — I know he did not. [Two of the 
Republican committee here seized Mr. Lincoln, and by a sudden jerk 
caused him to disappear from the front of the stand, one of them say- 
ing quite audibly, "What are you making such a fuss for? Douglas 
didn't interrupt you, and can't you see that the people don't like it? "] 

Mr. Douglas. — I donot know whether he knows it or not, that is 
not the point and I will yet bring him to the question. 

In the first place, Mr. Lincoln was selected by the very men who 
made the Republican organization on that day, to reply to me. He 
spoke for them and for that party, and he was the leader of the party; 
and on the very day he made his speech in reply to me, preaching up 
this same doctrine of negro equality under the Declaration of Indepen- 
dence, this Republican party met in Convention. [Three cheers for 
Douglas.] Another evidence that he was acting in concert with them 
is to be found in the fact that that Convention waited an hour after its 
time of meeting to hear Lincoln's speech, and Codding, one of their 
leading men, marched in the moment Lincoln got through, and gave 
notice that they did not want to hear me, and would proceed with the 
business of the Convention. ["Strike him again," — three cheers, 
etc.] Still another fact. I have here a newspaper printed at Spring- 
field, Mr. Lincoln's own town, in October, 1854, a few days afterward, 
publishing these resolutions, charging Mr. Lincoln with entertaining 
these sentiments, and trying to prove that they were also the senti- 
ments of Mr. Yates, then candidate for Congress. This has been 
published on Mr. Lincoln over and over again, and never before has he 
denied it. ["Three cheers."] 

But, my friends, this denial of his that he did not act on the com- 
mittee, is a miserable quibble to avoid this main issue, [Applause, 



DOUGLAS AT OTTAWA 119 

"That's so."] which is, that this Republican platform declares in 
favor of the unconditional repeal of the Fugitive-Slave law. Has 
Lincoln answered whether he indorsed^ that or not? [" No, no. "] 
IJcalled his attention to it when I first addressed you, and asked him 
for an answer, and I then predicted that he would not answer. 
[" Bravo, glorious, " and cheers.] How does he answer? Why, that 
he was not on the committee that wrote the resolutions. [Laughter.] 
I then repeated the next proposition contained in the resolutions, 
which was to restrict slavery in those States in which it exists, and 
asked him whether he indorsed^ it. Does he answer yes, or no? He 
says in reply, "I was not on the committee at the time; I was up in 
Tazewell. " The next question I put to him was, whether he was in 
favor of prohibiting the admission of any more Slave States into the 
Union. I put the question to him distinctly, whether, if the people 
of the Territory, when they had sufficient population to make a State, 
should form their Constitution recognizing slavery, he would vote for 
or against its admission. ["That's it. "] He is a candidate for the 
United States^ Senate, and it is possible, if he should be elected, that 
he would have to vote directly on that question. [" He never will. "] 
I asked him to answer me and you, whether he would vote to admit 
a State into the Union, with slavery or without it, as its own people 
might choose. ["Hear him," "That's the doctrine," and applause.] 
He did not answer that question. [" He never will. "] He dodges that 
question also, under the cover that he was not on the committee at 
the time, that he was not present when the platform was made. I 
want to know if he should happen to be in the Senate when a State 
applied for admission, with a Constitution acceptable to her own 
people, he would vote to admit that State, if slavery was one of its 
institutions. ["That's the question."] He avoids the answer. 

Mr. Lincoln, interrupting the third time, excitedly. — No, Judge. — 
[Mr. Lincoln again disappeared suddenly, aided by a pull from behind.] 

It is true he gives the Abolitionists to understand by a hint that he 
would not vote to admit such a State. And why? He goes on to say 
that the man who would talk about giving each State the right to have 
slavery or not, as it pleased, was akin to the man who would muzzle 
the guns which thundered forth the annual joyous return of the day 

J- Reads: "endorsed" for "indorsed." 
*.teads: "endorsed" for "indorsed." 
»Omits "States." 



120 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

of our Independence. [Great laughter.] He says that that kind of 
talk is casting a blight on the glory of this country. What is the 
meaning of that? That he is not in favor of each State to have^ the 
right of doing as it pleases on the slavery question? ["Stick it to 
him," "don't spare him," applause.] I will put the question to him 
again and again, and I intend to force it out of him. [Immense 
applause.] 

Then, again, this platform, which was made at Springfield by his 
own party when he was its acknowledged head, provides that Repub- 
licans will insist on the abolition of slavery in the District of Columbia, 
and I asked Lincoln specifically whether he agreed with them in 
that? [" Did you get an answer? "] ["No, no."] He is afraid to 
answer it. ["We will not vote for him. "] He knows I will trot him 
down to Egypt. [Laughter and cheers.] I intend to make him 
answer there, ["That's right "] or I will show the people of Illinois that 
he does not intend to answer these questions. ["Keep him to the 
point, " " give us more, " etc.] The Convention to which I have been 
alluding goes a little further, and pledges itself to exclude slavery from 
all the Territories over which the General Government has exclusive 
jurisdiction north of 36 deg. 30 min., as well as south. Now, I want 
to know whether he approves that provision. [" He'll never answer, " 
and cheers.] I want him to answer, and when he does, I want to 
know his opinion on another point, which is, whether he will redeem 
the pledge of this platform, and resist the acquirement of any more 
territory unless slavery therein shall be forever prohibited. I want 
him to answer this last question. 

Each of the questions I have put to him are practical questions, 
— questions based upon the fundamental principles of the Black Re- 
publican party; and I want to know whether he is the first, last, and 
only choice of a party with whom he does not agree in principle. 
[Great applause.] [" Rake him down. "] He does not deny but that 
that principle was unanimously adopted by the Republican party ; he 
does not deny that the whole Republican party is pledged to it; he 
does not deny that a man who is not faithful to it is faithless to the 
Republican party; and now I want to know whether that party is 
unanimously in favor of a man who does not adopt that creed and 
agree with them in their principles ; I want to know whether the man 
who does not agree with them, and who is afraid to avow his dif- 

^Reads: "having" for "to have." 



DOUGLAS AT OTTAWA 121 

ferences, and who dodges the issue, is the first, last, and only choice 
of the Republican party. [Cheers.] 

A Voice. — How about the conspiracy? 

Mr. Douglas. — Never mind, I will come to that soon enough. 
[" Bravo, Judge, hurrah, " " three cheers for Douglas. "] But the plat- 
form which I have read to you not only lays down these principles, but 
it adds: — 

" Resolved, That, in furtherance of these principles, we will use such consti- 
tutional and Ia\vful means as shall seem best adapted to their accomplishment, 
and that we will support no man for office, under the General or State Govern- 
ment, who is not positively and fully committed to the support of these 
principles, and whose personal character and conduct is not a guarantee that 
he is reliable, and who shall not have abjured old partj' allegiance and ties. " 

["Good," ''you have him," etc.] 

The Black Republican party stands pledged that they will never 
support Lincoln until he has pledged himself to that platform; [Tre- 
mendous applause, men throwing up their hats, and shouting, " You've 
got him. "] but he cannot devise his answer. He has not made up his 
mind whether he will or not. [Great laughter.] He talked about 
everything else he could think of to occupy his hour and a half, and 
when he could not think of anything more to say, without an excuse 
for refusing to answer these questions, he sat down long before his 
time was out. [Cheers.] 

In relation to Mr. Lincoln's charge of conspiracy against me, I have 
a word to say. In his speech to-day he quotes a playful part of his 
speech at Springfield, about Stephen, and James, and Franklin, and 
Roger, and says that I did not take exception to it. I did not answer 
it, and he repeats it again. I did not take exception to this figure of 
his. He has a right to be as playful as he pleases in throwing his 
arguments together, and I will not object; but I did take objection to 
his second Springfield speech, in which he stated that he intended his 
first speech as a charge of corruption or conspiracy against the Sup- 
reme Court of the United States, President Pierce, President Buch- 
anan, and myself. That gave the offensive character to the charge. 
He then said that when he made it he did not know whether it was 
true or not ; [laughter] but inasmuch as Judge Douglas had not denied 
it, although he had replied to the other parts of his speech three times, 
he repeated it as a charge of conspiracy against me, thus charging me 
with moral turpitude. When he put it in that form, I did say that, 



122 . ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

inasmuch as he repeated the charge simply because I had not denied 
it, I would deprive him of the opportunity of ever repeating it again, 
by declaring that it was, in all its bearings, an infamous lie. ["Three 
cheers for Douglas. "] He says he will repeat it until I answer his 
folly and nonsense about Stephen, and Franklin, and Roger, and 
Bob, and James. 

He studied that out, prepared that one sentence with the greatest 
care, committed it to memory, and put it in his first Springfield speech; 
and now he carries that speech around, and reads that sentence to 
show how pretty it is. [Laughter.] His vanity is wounded because 
I will not go into that beautiful figure of his about the building of a 
house. [Renewed laughter.] All I have to say is, that I am not 
green enough to let him make a charge which he acknowledges he does 
not know to be true, and then take up my time in answering it, when 
I know it to be false, and nobody else knows it to be true. [Cheers.] 

I have not brought a charge of moral turpitude against him. When 
he, or any other man, brings one against me, instead of disproving it, 
I will say that it is a lie, and let him prove it if he can. [Enthusiastic 
applause.] 

I have lived twenty -five years in Illinois, I have served you with 
all the fidelity and ability which I possess, ["That's so," "good" and 
cheers] and Mr. Lincoln is at liberty to attack my public action, my 
votes, and my conduct, but when he dares to attack my moral integrity 
by a charge of conspiracy between myself. Chief Justice Taney and 
the Supreme Court, and two Presidents of the United States, I will 
repel it. ["Three cheers for Douglas."] 

Mr. Lincoln has not character enough for integrity and truth, merely 
on his own ipse dixit, to arraign President Buchanan, President Pierce, 
and nine Judges of the Supreme Court, not one of whom would be 
complimented by being put on an equality with him. ["Hit him 
again, " " three cheers, " etc.] There is an unpardonable presumption 
in a man putting himself up before thousands of people, and pretend- 
ing that his ipse dixit, without proof, without fact, and without truth, 
is enough to bring down and destro}' the purest and best of living men. 
["Hear him," "three cheers."] 

Fellow-citizens, my time is fast expiring; I must pass on. Mr. 
Lincoln wants to know why I voted against Mr. Chase's amendment 
to the Nebraska bill. I will tell him. In the first place, the bill 



DOUGLAS AT OTTAWA 123 

already conferred all the power which Congress had, by giving the 
people the whole power over the subject. Chase offered a proviso 
that they might abolish slavery, which by implication would convey 
the idea that they could prohibit by not introducing that institution. 
General Cass asked him to modify his amendment so as to provide 
that the people might either prohibit or introduce slavery, and thus 
make it fair and equal. Chase refused to so modify his proviso, and 
then General Cass and all the rest of us voted it down. [Immense 
cheering.] Those facts appear on the journals and debates of Congress 
where Mr. Lincoln found the charge; and if he had told the whole 
truth, there would have been no necessity for me to occupy your time 
in explaining the matter. [Laughter and applause.] 

Mr. Lincoln wants to know why the word " State, " as well as " Ter- 
ritory, " was put into the Nebraska bill. I will tell him. It was put 
there to meet just such false arguments as he has been adducing, 
[Laughter.] That first, not only the people of the Territories should 
do as they pleased, but that when they come to be admitted as States, 
they should come into the Union with or without slavery, as the people 
determined. I meant to knock in the head this Abolition doctrine of 
Mr. Lincoln's that there shall be no more Slave States, even if the 
people want them. [Tremendous applause.] And it does not do for 
him to say, or for any other Black Republican to say, that there is 
nobody in favor of the doctrine of no more Slave States, and that 
nobody wants to interfere with the right of the people to do as they 
please. 

What was the orgin of the Missouri difficulty and the Missouri 
Compromise? The people of Missouri formed a Constitution as a 
Slave State, and asked admission into the Union; but the Free-soi 
party of the North, being in a majority, refused to admit her because 
she had slavery as one of her institutions. Hence this first slavery 
agitation arose upon a State, and not upon a Territory; and yet Mr. 
Lincoln does not know why the word "State" was placed in the 
Kansas-Nebraska bill. [Great laughter and applause.] The whole 
Abolition agitation arose on that doctrine of prohibiting a State from 
coming in with slavery or not, as it pleased, and that same doctrine 
is here in this Republican platform of 1854; it has never been repealed; 
and every Black Republican stands pledged by that platform never 
to vote for any man who is not in favor of it. Yet Mr. Lincoln does 
not know that there is a man in the world who is in favor of preventing 
a State from coming in as it pleases, notwithstanding. The Spring- 



124 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

field platform says that they, the Republican party, will not allow a 
State to come in under such circumstances. He is an ignorant man. 
[Cheers.] 

Now you see that upon these very points I am as far from bringing 
Mr. Lincoln up to the line as I ever was before. He does not want to 
avow his principles. I do want to avow mine, as clear as sunlight in 
midday. [Cheers and applause.] Democracy is founded upon the 
eternal principle of right. ["That's the talk."] The plainer these 
principles are avowed before the people, the stronger will be the sup- 
port which they will receive. I only wish I had the power to make 
them so clear that they would shine in the heavens for every man, 
woman, and child to read. [Loud cheering.] The first of those 
principles that I would proclaim would be in opposition to Mr. Lin- 
coln's doctrine of uniformity between the different States, and I 
would declare instead the sovereign right of each State to decide the 
slavery question as well as all other domestic questions for themselves, 
without interference from any other State or power whatsoever. 
[''Hurrah for Douglas!"] 

When that principle is recognized, you will have peace and har- 
mony and fraternal feeling between all the States of this Union ; until 
you do recognize that doctrine, there will be sectional warfare agitating 
and distracting the country. What does Mr. Lincoln propose? He 
says that the Union cannot exist divided into Free and Slave States. 
If it cannot endure thus divided, then he must strive to make them all 
Free or all Slave, which will inevitably bring about a dissolution of the 
Union. [Cries of " He can't do it. "] 

Gentlemen, I am told that my time is out, and I am obliged to stop. 
[Three times three cheers were here given for Senator Douglas. 

When Douglas had concluded the shouts were tremendous; his 
excoriation of Lincoln was so severe, that the Republicans hung their 
heads in shame. The Democrats, however, were loud in their \H)cif- 
e rations.] 

[Philadelphia, Pa., Press, August 26, 1858] 

THE CAMPAIGN IN ILLINOIS 



Clreat Discussion between Douglas and Lincoln.— Immense Enthu- 
siasm.— The Little Giant Triumi)hant.-20,000 People Present 

[Special Correspondence of The Press.] 
The discussion between Judge Douglas and Hon. A. Lincoln, the 
respective candidates for the United States Senate, commenced at 



THE OTTAWA DEBATE 125 

Ottawa, 111., on Saturday, the 21st instant. The meeting was the 
largest ever held in this part of the State, and the enthusiasm was 
unbounded. It is estimated that not less than 20,000 persons were 
present on this important occasion. The bare announcement that the 
two candidates were to meet in open debate was sufficient to bring 
together an immense crowd. 

A special train of fourteen passenger cars, filled to overflowing, 
came from Chicago. Another train, composed of eleven cars, came 
from Peru and LaSalle; whilst delegations in wagons, carriages, and 
on horseback, came from all directions, and aided to swell the great 
multitude. 

Gorgeous flags and ensigns, bearing appropriate inscriptions, un- 
furled to the breeze, whilst the rapid discharges of artillery reverber- 
ated on the air, and seemed to make the very earth tremble. 

Judge Douglas, the great champion, and the invincible defender of 
the rights, liberties, and institutions of a free people, was met at the 
city of Peru, sixteen miles distant, by the committee, in an elegant 
carriage drawn by four splendid horses, and brought to Ottawa. Four 
miles out he was met by a delegation composed of several hundreds, 
bearing flags and banners, and escorted into the city amid the boom- 
ing of cannon, the shouts of thousands, and the strains of martial 
music. As he neared the Geiger House, it was almost impossible for 
the carriages to force their way through the dense mass of living 
beings that blocked up the streets, and clung to the carriage contain- 
ing the distinguished Senator, anxious to clasp him by the hand. The 
shouts and cheers that arose on his approach were deafening. No 
conception can be formed of the enthusiasm that was manifested 
without having been present, and I cannot command the language to 
render a proper description. He came like some great deliverer, 
some mighty champion, who had covered himself with imperishable 
laurels, and saved a nation from ruin; he came as the immortal 
Washington, or the patriotic Lafayette, with a nation ready to do him 
homage. But how different his deeds! They had distinguished 
themselves on the battle field, whilst the statesman and Senator had 
reached the culminating point of his career in the councils of the 
nation, by beating back the tide of political tyranny, and gloriously 
establishing the doctrine of popular sovereignty, and the right of the 
people to make their oum laws. 

When they reached the Geiger House, and the carriage halted in 



126 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

the street, there arose one spontaneous shout that seemed to rend the 
very air. Again and again did that shout go up, as the distinguished 
Senator stood in the open carriage with head uncovered, gracefully 
bowing to the living mass of humanity that surrounded him on all 
sides. As soon as sufficient order could be restored, he was welcomed 
in a reception speech by H. W. H. Cushman, Esq., which was indeed 
an eloquent tribute of esteem and appreciation of his course in the 
Senate. It was, undoubtedly, the finest, most eloquent, and appro- 
priate reception address delivered during this campaign. I will 
attempt no description of it — you must read it to appreciate it. Judge 
Douglas was deeply affected, and could scarcely restrain his emotion. 

How different the enthusiasm manifested for his competitor, Mr. 
Lincoln; or, as he has termed himself, "the living dog. " As his pro- 
cession passed the Geiger House there was scarcely a cheer went up. 
They marched along silently and sorrowfully, as if it were a funeral 
cortege following him to the grave. It struck me as very appropriate, 
as well as symbolical, of what would most assuredly come to pass next 
November. They appeared to be following "& dead dog" to his 
political grave; and had the bands played a mournful funeral dirge, 
the picture would have been complete. 

The discussion opened at 2 o'clock in Lafayette Square. The 
crowd was so dense that the speakers and committeemen could 
scarcely make their way to the stand, which was filled with reporters 
and representatives of the press from all sections of the State. 

It was agreed that Judge Douglas should open the debate in a 
speech an hour in length, when Lincoln should follow in a reply an 
hour and a half, and Judge Douglas rejoin for thirty minutes. 

The opening speech was able and eloquent. The Little Giant 
seemed to surpass himself. He put a number of pointed and leading 
questions to Lincoln, one of which was whether, if he were elected 
to the Senate, he would vote to admit States with the privilege of 
making their own Constitutions, subject to the will of the majority. 
He deemed it very important that the " living dog " should define his 
position, by answering this question. If he were a Repubhcan he 
wanted to know it, and if he were an Abolitionist he wanted to know 
that also. He wanted no more dodging. It was all-important that 
Lincoln should tell whether he was for Congress to say whether 
slavery should exist in a State or Territory, or whether the people 



THE OTTAWA DEBATE 127 

should say so. This is the key to the whole question at issue, and it 
will put a different complexion on the campaign. 

The remainder of Judge Douglas's speech was particularly severe, as 
well as logical and powerful. I will attempt no further description of 
it, as you can read it almost as soon as this. 

When Lincoln commenced his reply, he was evidently laboring 
under great embarrassment. "When he had spoken only tw^enty 
minutes, he turned round and asked the moderator how near his time 
was up! Poor fellow! he was writhing in the powerful grasp of an 
intellectual giant. His speech amounted to nothing. It was made 
up with such expressions as " I think it is so, " " I may be mistaken, " 
''I guess it was done," &:c., &c. There were no straightforward 
assertions and logical conclusions, such as fall from the lips of Douglas. 
He spent over half an hour reading from some old speech that he had 
previously made on Abolitionism. As he continued reading, there were 
numerous voices exclaiming: "What book is that 3'ou are reading 
from? " This tended to increase his confusion, and after blundering 
and whining along, and endeavoring to tell anecdotes and nursery 
tales, he sat down at the end of one hour and fifteen minutes, a quarter 
of an hour before the expiration of his time, without alluding to one 
of the questions put to him by Judge Douglas. He dodged them all, 
not daring to give an answer. But they will be put to him again, and 
there is no alternative now but to "face the music. " 

When Judge Douglas rose to reply, his countenance brightened up 
with that peculiar intellectual and demolishing look that he is so 
famous for when he is about to make a great point. He electrified the 
crowd at once. Could you have seen those looks, and heard those 
burning words of sarcasm, as he commenced to rend his antagonist to 
atoms, you would have been obliged to admit that it was the culmin- 
ating period of his life. He poured forth a torrent of logic and 
sarcasm blended in one strain, that was astonishing. Turning around 
and facing Lincoln, who was beginning to get very blue about his 
chops, he impaled him at once — then clutching him in his intellectual 
grasp, he held him up before the crowd as it were, in imagination, till 
you could see him like a captivated spider. He reiterated his questions 
and informed him that there must be no more dodging, and that he 
was " determined to screw an answer out of him. " He reviewed Lin- 
coln's political career, and showed how he had distinguished himself 
when in Congress by taking sides with the enemy, and how he voted 



128 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

against his country and her soldiers. The excoriation that he gave 
him was terrible. 

When he concluded his thirty-minute broadside, he left the stand 
immediately, for the cars were waiting. The crowd made one rush 
after him, and there arose a shout that reverberated for miles across 
the prairies. In front was the " Little Giant, " swinging his hat from 
right to left, with thousands rushing after him. Such unbounded and 
electrical enthusiasm I never saw before. 

Fifteen minutes afterwards a crowd of about 150 proceeded up the 
street, four of whom had shouldered Mr. Lincoln, and were carrying 
him to his hotel. A sardonic grin was on his countenance. It was 
decidedly the most laughable, as well as the most ridiculous, spectacle 
that I have beheld for many a day. It excited much merriment on all 
sides. 

Lincoln is the worst-used-up man in the United States, and he is 
driven almost to desperation. You will find that before he passes 
through this discussion, there will scarcely be anything left of him. 
He now exhibits the appearance of great mental and bodily suffering. 
He has six appointments to meet Judge Douglas yet. / don't believe 
he will fill them all. The next one is at Freeport, on the 27th inst. 

The campaign in Illinois surpasses all others that have ever taken 
place. The contest in Pennsylvania, in 1856, falls far behind it. . . . 

[Evening Post, New York, Aug. 27, 1858] 

SENATORIAL CANVASS IN ILLINOIS 



Lincoln and Doug-las at Ottawa 
[From our Special Correspondent] 

Chicago, August 23, 1858 

Saturday, the 21st, was the day of the first discussion between 
Lincoln and Douglas. It was held at Ottawa, a city of about 9,000 
inhabitants, on the line of the Chicago and Rock Island Railroad and 
the Illinois canal, and at the junction of the Fox and Illinois rivers. I 
arrived late the night before at Ottawa, and was accommodated with 
a sofa at the hotel. The city was already even full. Saturday was a 
pleasant, but warm day, and Ottawa was deluged in dust. By wagon, 
by rail, by canal, the people poured in, till Ottawa was one mass of 



THE OTTAWA DEBATE 129 

active life. Men, women, and children, old and young, the dwellers on 
the broad prairies, had turned their backs upon the plough, and had 
come to listen to these champions of the two parties. Military com- 
panies were out; martial music sounded, and salutes of artillery thun- 
dered in the air. Eager marshals in partisan sashes rode furiously 
about the streets. Peddlers were crj'ing their wares at the corners, 
and excited groups of politicians were canvassing and quarreling 
everywhere. And still they came, the crowd swelling constantly in 
its proportions and growing more eager and more hungr}-, perhaps 
more thirsty, though every precaution was taken against this latter 
evil. About noon the rival processions were formed, and paraded the 
i^treets amid the cheers of the people. Mr. Lincoln was met at the 
depot by an immense crowd, who escorted him to the residence of the 
Maj'or, with banners flying and mottoes waving their unfaltering 
attachment to him and to his cause. The Douglas turnout, though 
plentifully interspersed with the Hibernian element, was less noisy, 
and thus matters were arranged for the after-dinner demonstration in 
the Court House square, where the stand was erected, and where, 
under the blazing sun, unprotected by shade trees, and unprovided 
with seats, the audience was expected to congregate and listen to 
the champions. 

Two men presenting wider contrasts could hardly be found as the 
representatives of the two great parties. Everybody knows Douglas, 
a short, thick-set, burly man, with large round head, heavy hair, dark 
complexion, and fierce bull-dog bark. Strong in his own real power, 
and skilled by a thousand conflicts in all the strategy of a hand-to- 
hand or a general fight. Of towering ambition, restless in his deter- 
mined desire for notoriety; proud, defiant, arrogant, audacious, 
unscrupulous, " Little Dug, " ascended the platform and looked out 
impudently and carelessly on the immense throng which surged and 
struggled before him. A native of ^^ermont, reared on a soil where 
no slave ever stood, trained to hard manual labor and schooled in 
early hardships, he came to Illinois a teacher, and from one post to 
another had risen to his present eminence. Forgetful of the ances- 
tral hatred of slavery to wdiich he was the heir, he had come to be a 
holder of slaves and to owe much of his fame to his continued sub- 
servience to southern influence. 

The other — Lincoln — is a native of Kentucky, and of poor white 
parentage ; and from his cradle has felt the blighting influence of the 
dark and cruel shadow which rendered labor dishonorable, and kept 



130 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

the poor in poverty, while it advanced the rich in their possessions. 
Reared in poverty and the humblest aspirations, he left his native 
state, crossed the line into Illinois, and began his career of honorable 
toil. At first a laborer, splitting rails for a living — deficient in edu- 
cation, and applying himself even to the rudiments of knowledge — he, 
too, felt the expanding power of his American manhood, and began 
to achieve the greatness to which he has succeeded. With great 
difficulty struggling through the tedious formularies of legal lore, he 
was admitted to the bar, and rapidly made his way to the front 
ranks of his profession. Honored by the people with office, he is^ still 
the same honest and reliable man. He volunteers in the Black 
Hawk war, and does the state good service in its sorest need. In 
every relation of life, socially and to the State, Mr. Lincoln has been 
always the pure and honest man. In physique he is the opposite to 
Douglas. Built on the Kentucky type, he is very tall, slender and 
angular, awkward even, in gait and attitude. His face is sharp, 
large-featured and unprepossessing. His eyes are deep set, under 
heavy brows; his forehead is high and retreating, and his hair is dark 
and heavy. In repose, I must confess that " Long Abe's " appearance 
is not comely. But stir him up, and the fire of his genius plays on 
every feature. His eye glows and sparkles, every lineament, now so 
ill formed, grows brilliant and expressive, and you have before you a 
man of rare power and of strong magnetic influence. He takes the 
people every time, and there is no getting away from his sturdy good 
sense, his unaffected sincerity, and the unceasing play of his good 
humor, which accompanies his close logic and smoothes the way to 
conviction. Listening to him on Saturday, calmly and unprejudiced, 
I was convinced that he has no superior as a stump speaker. He is 
clear, concise and logical; his language is eloquent and at perfect 
command. He is altogether a more fluent speaker than Douglas, and 
in all the arts of debate fully his equal. The Republicans of Illinois 
have chosen a champion worthy of their heartiest support, and fully 

equipped for the conflict Yours, &c.. 

Bayou 
{Boston Daily Advertiser, August 28, 1858] 

THE CAMPAIGN IN ILLINOIS 



Messrs. Doug-las and Lincoln on the Stump 
Messrs. Douglas and Lincoln the rival candidates for the U. S. 
Senate in Illinois, have arranged to hold seven public debates with 



THE OTTAWA DEBATE 131 

each other in different parts of the State. The first of them took 
place at Ottawa on Saturday last, in presence of an immense atten- 
dance, estimated at twelve thousand. Great interest was exhibited 
by the multitude, and the champions were loudly cheered and 
applauded by their respective friends. Mr. Douglas spoke first for an 
hour; then Mr. Lincoln for an hour-and-a-half ; and finally Mr. Douglas 
for half an hour in closing. The whole debate is reported in full in 
the Chicago papers, but is of course too voluminous for our space. 
Our readers, however, will doubtless be glad to understand the basis 
upon which the campaign is carried on in Illinois, and accordingly we 
make an extract from each of the speeches, copying from the report 
in the Chicago Press and Tribune of the 23d inst. 



The republicans were delighted with the effect of the day's debate. 
Mr. Lincoln was most vociferously cheered throughout, and at the 
conclusion of the debate it is stated that " he was seized by the multi- 
tude and borne off on their shoulders in the center of a crowd of five 
thousand shouting republicans with a band of music in front. " Judge 
Douglas, on his part, was cordially supported by his friends. 

[Baltimore, Md., Sun August 27, 1858] 

THE POLITICAL CAMPAIGN IN ILLINOIS 



Joint Discussion between Douglas and Lincoln.— Large Turnout.— An 

Amusing- Sketcli 

The political campaign in Illinois is becoming decidedly warm and 
interesting, and begins to attract no little attention throughout the 
country. We find in the New York Express a letter dated Ottawa, 
111., August 21st, from which we select a few extracts: 

The representatives of republicanism and democracy in this State — Mr. 
Lincoln and Judge Douglas — met at tliis place by appointment to-daj^ and 
had a public discussion before an immense concourse of people, on the great 
questions that agitate the State. Botli speakers are able; both have the 
warmest personal and political adlierents, and attract great attention where- 
ever they appear. Tlie number in Ottawa to-day, brouglit together chiefly 
from the surrounding country — though many came from distant parts of the 
State — could not be less than 20,000. 

There is no compai'ison in my judgement between tlie two speakers. Judge 
Douglas stands erect, and has the bearing, the presence and tlie tlioughts of a 
statesman who aims at the welfare of the whole country. Mr. Lincoln throws 
himself into all manner of shapes when speaking, and represents a narrow 



132 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

idea. Judge Douglas could say what he says at the furthest North and 
throughout the South. Mr. Lincoln could not find hearers south of the 
Potomac on the doctrines he professes. 

[St. Louis, Mo., Morning Herald, August 24, 1858] 

ILLINOIS POLITICS 

Tremont House 
Chicago, III., August 22nd, 1858 
Editor Herald: — 

Leaving St. Louis on Friday morning, the 20th instant, at 6 o'clock 
A. M., we arrived at Ottawa the same night at 1 o'clock — thanks to the 
gentlemanly and obliging conductors of the St. Louis, Alton and Terre 
Haute, and Illinois Central Railroads, over which we traveled. 

On Saturday morning the country people were seen coming into 
town to be present at the political discussion between Douglas and 
Lincoln. 

Lincoln arrived from Morris shortly before 12 o'clock m., and after- 
wards Douglas came into town from Peru. 

Several hundred persons had congregated at the Geiger House to 
see the procession pass, and although Ottawa is claimed to be a Repub- 
lican district, yet not a cheer was heard as Lincoln passed by with his 
escort : but when Douglas arrived near the same place, he was greeted 
with loud and continued cheering. 

At about half past 2 o'clock Douglas commenced the discussion, 
speaking one hour. Lincoln replied in a speech of one hour and a 
half, and then Douglas rejoined, speaking half an hour. 

It was evident, from the manner in which the candidates were re- 
ceived on mounting the stump, that the Lincoln men were in the ma- 
jority, and this idea seemed to be substantiated from the applause 
Lincoln received during the speech, and on concluding, he sat down 
apparently well pleased with himself. 

But when Douglas rejoined in his speech of half an hour, he carried 
with him almost the entire crowd. He propounded several questions 
to Lincoln, which Lincoln could not or would not answer. Among 
the questions he asked L. if he would sustain the resolutions or plat- 
form adopted by the Republican Convention at Springfield, in 1854; 
but Lincoln remained silent and did not answer, and his smiling face 
changed considerably when he saw he was cornered. 

Lincoln had denied in his speech that he took any part in that 
Convention, although his name was on one of the Committees. But 



THE OTTAWA DEBATE 133 

Douglas brought forward proofs to show that Lincohi had supported 
that platform, and, said Douglas, "I will yet bring Mr. Lincoln to his 
milk on that point." 

At this time matters changed considerably, and hundreds of those 
who had been applauding Lincoln all along, now turned and applauded 
Douglas. 

At the conclusion of the discussion Douglas was surrounded by an 
immense crowd and escorted to the Geiger House, amid the loudest 
cheers. 

Thus ended the first of the seven discussions to be held at various 
places in the State, in which both candidates are to take part; and if 
Douglas commences by triumphing in a Republican district, Lincoln 
may as well hang up his hat, take a back seat, and wait until 1860, 
as Douglas will then be President; and then Mr. Lincoln may make 
another effort for an election to the United States Senate, without 
having a Douglas to contend with. M. 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, August 23, 1858] 

GREAT DEBATE BETWEEN LINCOLN 

AND DOUGLAS AT OTTAWA 



Twelve Thousand Persons Present.— The Dred Scott Champion Pul- 
verized.— Verbatim Report of Doug-las' Speech.— Lincoln's 
Reply and Doug-las' Rejoinder 

From sunrise till high noon on Saturday, Ottawa was deluged in 
dust. The first of the seven great debates which Douglas had con- 
sented to hold with Lincoln, had started LaSalle, Will, Kendall, 
Grundy, Kankakee, Cook and other surrounding counties, in un- 
wonted commotion. Before breakfast Ottawa was beleaguered with 
a multiplying host from all points of the compass. At eight o'clock 
the streets and avenues resembled a vast smoke house. Teams, trains 
and processions poured in from every direction like an army with 
banners. National flags, mottoes and devices fluttered and stared 
from every street corner. Military companies and bands of music 
monopolized the thoroughfares around the Court House and the 
public square. Two brass twelve-pounders banged away in the cen- 
ter of the city and drowned the hubbub of the multitude with their 
own higher capacities for hubbub. Vanity Fair never boiled with 
madder enthusiasm. 

At eleven o'clock two long processions were formed, one marching 



134 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

to the depot of the Rock Island Raih-oad, where Mr. Lincoln was 
expected to arrive, and the other moving down the road towards Peru 
whence Mr. Douglas was advertised to come. As the first procession 
was crossing the canal, an enormous canal boat was moored near the 
bridge, crowded with men and women. In the bow was a large 
banner inscribed: 

THE CORPORATION OF MARSEILLES 

FOR 

ABRAHAM LINCOLN. 

In a few minutes another boat appeared from Morris with a similar 
crowd and similar devices. 

Shortly after twelve o'clock a special train from Chicago, Joliet, 
etc., came in mth seventeen cars. When it reached the depot, three 
deafening cheers were repeated and re-repeated until the woods and 
bluffs rang again. Mr. Lincoln was placed in a carriage beautifully 
decorated with evergreens and mottoes by the young ladies of Ottawa, 
and escorted by the procession, over half a mile in length, with mili- 
tary companies and bands of music, from the depot to the public 
square, around the square and to the residence of Mayor Glover. 
Enormous crowds blocked the streets and side-walks through which 
the procession moved, and the shouts of the multitude rolled from end 
to end, around the street corners and across the bridge, in a con- 
tinuous tum.ult. When Mr. Lincoln's carriage stopped at the Mayor's 
residence, three mighty cheers were given and the crowd scattered 
miscellaneoush' for dinner. 

The Douglas procession moved down the Peru road to Buffalo 
Rock, where they met the pro-slavery champion, whom they escorted 
to the Geiger House. The procession was about half as long as that 
which waited on Mr. Lincoln, and the enthusiasm was almost wholly 
confined to the Irish Catholics. 

At one o'clock, the crowd commenced pouring into the public 
square. The rush was literally tremendous. The speaking stand had 
been foolishly left ungarded, and was so crowded with people, before 
the officers of the day arrived, that half an hour was consumed in a 
battle to make room for the speakers and reporters. Even then the 
accomodations were of the most wretched character. Two or three 
times the surge of people on the platform nearly drove the reporters 
off, and half a dozen clowns on the roof broke through some of the 
boards and let them down of the heads of the Reception Committees. 



THE OTTAWA DEBATE 135 

The whole number of persons present could not have been less than 
twelve thousand. Large numbers were present from Chicago, Galena, 
Springfield, Peoria, Quincy, Rock Island, Bloomington, Alton and 
other distant towns. The crowd was considerably larger on the 
ground than that which assembled in this city on the night of Douglas' 
opening speech. 

MR. Douglas's speech 

At half pa.st two, Mr. Douglas took the front of the platform, amid 
the cheers of the Hibernians, who had fought their way to the front, 
and said: 



MR. LINXOLN's reply 

Mr. Lincoln then came forward and was greeted with loud and 
protracted cheers from fully two-thirds of the audience. This was 
admitted by the Douglas men on the platform. It was some minutes 
before he could make himself heard, even by those on the stand. At 
last he said : 

When Lincoln had concluded his masterly and crushing indictment 
and conviction, amidst the applause of thousands of voices, Douglas 
sprang to his feet to reply. His face was li\*id with passion and excite- 
ment. All his plans had been demoUshed, himself placed in the crimi- 
nal's box to answer to an indictment, and make head against a moun- 
tain of damning testimony heaped up against him by his antagonist. 
We have never seen a human face so distorted with rage. He resem- 
bled a vnid beast in looks and gesture, and a maniac in language and 
argument. He made no adequate reply to the heavy charges brought 
against him, save to call everybody ''liars" who alleged to believe 
them. He finished up by renewing his miserable charges and repeat- 
in his irrelevant questions, and claiming with a grand flourish, that 
Lincoln had not refuted the one nor answered the other; boasted 
that he had won the victory, and threatened what awful things he 
would do when he would next meet Lincoln at Freeport. The body- 
guard of five or six hundred Irish Papists stood close by him yelling 
and cheering at all he said, perfectly indifferent whether it was sound 
sense or wild raving. 

It was the opinion of every unprejudiced listener, that Douglas 



136 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

would give a year off the end of his life if he could escape meeting 
Lincoln at the six discussions through which he must pass. 

At the conclusion of the debate, when Mr. Lincoln walked down 
from the platform, he was seized by the multitude and borne off on 
their shoulders, in the center of a crowd of five thousand shouting 
Republicans, with a band of music in front. The Chicago delegation 
scattered for the cars, and so ended the Great Debate. 

[Missouri Republican, St. Louis, August 29, 1858] 

CHICAGO COHRESPONDENCE 

Chicago, August 23, 1858 

The contest between Douglas and Lincoln seems to be the one 
matter of interest among the good people of Chicago at present ; and 
the chances of either candidate form the reigning topic of conversation 
in every crowd. Saturday was a day of considerable excitment here, 
and little was talked of except the pitched battle between the two 
political champions at Ottawa. Early in the morning, large masses 
of the people gathered around the Rock Island depot, and the trains, 
both regular and extra, were crammed to their utmost capacity with 
excursionists to the great gathering. 

Upon the arrival of the trains, it was estimated that there were 
present some four thousand people, all of whom came from their fields, 
workshops, counting rooms, and offices, to evince their interest in the 
great struggle of the two great parties for predominance. I presume 
no mass meeting of the present canvass has been composed of a more 
respectable class. 

Douglas made the opening speech, which was a calm, deliberate and 
logical argument, of one hour, during which the people listened to him 
with much the same calmness which characterized the speech — all 
seeming much interested, but not excited. 

Lincoln followed, in one of his characteristic efforts, interlarding 
his address with funny anecdotes, droll expressions and frequent wit- 
ticisms, which soon put to flight the gravity which had reigned during 
the previous hour; and many were the outbursts of applause which 
his clever hits drew forth. He punched the " Little Giant " right and 
left, and dealt him many a well aimed thrust of keen satire, whereat, 
as your local man would say, " ye congregation did betray an unseem- 
lie lack of gravitie. " But the aforesaid " Giant " didn't seem to be 



THE OTTAWA DEBATE 137 

otherwise affected than as a young bull by an attack of gad flies, 
which one whisk of his capacious tail can put to flight. Like the bull, 
he was sufficiently irritated by the infliction to rouse his pugnacity, 
and when it came to his turn to reply, " pre-haps " he didn 't make the 
" har " fly ! When " Uncle Abe, " as the Tribune dubs him, rounded a 
sentence he was greeted with a merry outburst of humorous applause, 
but as blow after blow and thrust after thrust was dealt by the Judge, 
not ebullitions of merriment, but loud, long and sturdy shouts of 
triumph, rent the air, and when he concluded, the satisfaction which 
glowed upon the contenances of the hardy yeomen, who composed 
the principal part of the audience, testified that his last hour had been 
well occupied. 

Yours, 

Peter Pinfeather 

[Peoria, III., Transcript, August 24, 1858] 

THE GREAT DEBATE AT OTTAWA 



Twelve Thousand Persons Present.— Lincoln's Triumphant Vindica- 
tion ol Republican Principles.- The Giant Slain 

(Editorial Correspondence of the Transcript) 

Ottawa, Ills., / 
Saturday Evening, Aug. 21 j 

Such was the enthusiasm of the masses over Mr. Lincoln's triumph 
that as soon as the debate had closed and he had stepped from the 
platform, he was immediately by an immense crowd, numbering at 
least five thousand persons, lifted upon the shoulders of two stout 
men, and was borne about the streets, a band of music leading off with 
" Hail Columbia, " while the vast multitude followed in broken column 
shouting " Hurrah for Lincoln " as they went. 

Such was the interest in this face-to-face encounter of Lincoln and 
Douglas, that the masses flocked here from every quarter of the State. 
The Chicago special train numbering seventeen cars arrived, all cram- 
med with the crowd to the fullest capacity. Thousands of people 
came pouring into town in wagons, boats, &c., the various delegations 
bearing banners and accompanied by bands of music. The debate 
came off in a vacant square near the center of the city. When we 
arrived upon the ground the crowd, numbering at least 12,000 persons, 
was pressing towards the speaker's stand in great confusion. The 



138 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

stand itself was besieged by a boorish multitude whom the committee 
of arrangements were vainly endeavoring to drive off in order to make 
room for the speakers and reporters. Half an hour having been thus 
spent, Mr. Douglas took his position and commenced speaking. The 
whole speech was delivered in a coarse, vulgar, boisterous style, and 
excepting among a body-guard of roaring Irish Catholics, it was 
received with silent disgust. 

Lincoln came forward and commenced his reply amid thunders 
of applause. He disposed of Douglas' questions and charges in the 
most summary manner, and then entered at once and with great earn- 
estness of manner into a consideration of the real questions in issue. 
He brought up the charge of conspiracy against Mr. Douglas, drove it 
home upon him, and wedged it there. Lincoln's speech was an ad- 
mirable effort. It was high-toned and honorable, bold, pungent and 
powerful. He made his antagonist wince at every turn, and the vast 
audience manifested their appreciation of his success b}^ shouts of 
exultation and applause. — When he had finished, the universal feeling 
was that he had made a masterly effort — that he had, in fact, com- 
pletely demolished the little giant. 

Douglas sprung to his feet in reply, and it was evident that he felt 
that his case was a desperate one. I never looked upon a countenance 
so livid with excitement and brutal passions. — He looked and acted 
like a wild beast, and what he said resembled the ravings of a maniac 
more than the reasonings of a sane man — The heavy charges of Lin- 
coln were not disproved, nor attempted to be, but he bellowed the lie, 
fell back upon his forgery in relation to the Springfield resolutions, 
boasted that he had won the victory, threatened what he would 
hereafter do, and retired in a perfectly uncontrollable rage. As he 
went off of the platform, his Irish bodj^-guard accompanied him to his 
hotel, and the crowd soon followed bearing Lincoln in triumph. 

L. R. W. 

[Illinois State Register, August 24, 1858] 

DOUGLAS AND LINCOLN- THE DEBATE AT OTTA^A'A 



12.000 People Witness the Rout ot" Lincoln!— Doug-las Ag-ain Triunipli- 

ant!— Lincoln on the Sick List!!— He Shirks the 

Republican Platform 

We had the pleasure of being present at Ottawa on Saturday last, 
and hearing the opening debate between Messrs. Douglas and Lincoln. 



THE OTTAWA DEBATE 139 

— The assemblage of the people was an immense one — there being 
between ten and twelve thousand present. The two orators were re- 
ceived in town, by their respective friends, about noon. — Mr. Lincoln 
passed up the night before, to Morris, and came down by the railroad, 
with the crowd from Cook, Will, &c. Mr Douglas left the road three 
miles west of the town, and came up in a carriage, escorted by the 
democratic committee. When about two miles from town he was met 
by an immense procession, bearing flags and banners, with eloquent 
mottoes, speaking the hearty welcome of the LaSalle democracy, and 
attesting their loyalty to the good old cause. — This procession of car- 
riages, wagons, buggies, horsemen and footmen was quite a mile and a 
half long, swelling in numbers as it approached the town. When the 
head of this procession reached the center of the town, the republican 
escort, with Mr. Lincoln, was met. Each wended its wav, bv different 
routes, through the principal streets. The democratic procession es- 
corted Mr. Douglas to the Geiger House, where he was welcomed in a 
neat address by Hon. W. H. W. Cushman; the republicans escorted 
Mr. Lincoln to the Mansion House. The town was fairly alive with 
people, and with their shouts and hurras for their respective favorites, 
a constant roar was kept up. But there was no mistaking, notwith- 
standing the preponderance of the republican element in that quarter 
of the state, as shown by the election of '56, to whom popular atten- 
tion was directed. Compared with the hearty welcome to Douglas 
the efforts of the republicans to make a show for Lincoln was a sickly 
affair. — There was no heart nor hope in it. 

In addition to the large attendance from LaSalle, the surrounding 
counties sent large delegations, and when the whole appeared upon the 
square, where the speaker's stand was erected, the crowd presented a 
most imposing appearance. Having dined, the two speakers were 
escorted to the stand by their party committees. Mr. Douglas com- 
menced about 2^ o'clock and spoke an hour. It is not our intention to 
go over the line of his argument or that of Mr. Lincoln. We shall 
lay the whole debate before our readers. It is sufficient now to say 
that Judge D., after reviewing the general points he has previously 
made during the present canvass, took up the republican platform 
as first enunciated in this state, in state convention in this city in 
October 1854, which platform was reported by a committee of which 
Mr. Lincoln was a member, as shown by the convention's proceedings. 
On Thursday last we published the principal resolution of that plat- 



140 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

form — which declares for the repeal of the fugitive slave law; against 
the admission of any more slave states, and for extending "the 
Wilmot " over all the territories. Upon this Mr. Douglas descanted at 
length. He dissected the abolition thing, and showed up to his 
immense audience the infamous political heresies it embodied. Every 
word told, as the responses of the crowd fairly proved. He contrasted 
this platform of Mr. Lincoln with that of the democracy. Never was 
he more eloquent — never were his arguments more closely made or 
more pungently delivered. 

We are inclined to the opinion that Mr. Lincoln was not prepared 
to get into the debate in this shape. He was crammed with a speech 
suited to a defensive one from Douglas, but he found himself with a 
fire not only in his front, but in his rear and on both flanks. He was 
surrounded, and driven on to his own narrow sectional platform, 
which was completely "honey-combed" by the heavy shots of his 
antagonist. This was too hot a place for our ambitious townsman. 
He denied being the author of the platform, stumbled, floundered, and 
instead of the speech that he had prepared to make, bored his audience 
by using up a large portion of his time reading from a speech of 1854, 
of his own. He did not "face the music" upon the points made by 
Douglas. . He neither confessed nor denied — he only blundered, and 
broke down, lacking fifteen minutes of making out the time alloted to 
him — an hour and a half. He evidently felt, himself, that he had 
signally failed, and exposed the weakness of his position. Certainly 
his hearers, including his own supporters, were satisfied of it. 

The half hour reply of Mr. Douglas was a biting commentary upon 
the shuffling of Mr. Lincoln. From beginning to the end the wool 
flew. He riddled Lincoln's sophistries, ridiculed his evasions, and 
nailed him fast to the platform of '54, which Lincoln endeavored to 
creep out of. — Lincoln withered before the bold, lucid and eloquent 
argumentation, and writhed under the sharp invective of Douglas. 
So triumphant was the rejoinder, that, at the conclusion, almost as 
one man, the immense crowd thundered their appreciation of it. The 
cheers were absolutely deafening. As Mr. D. left the stand nearly the 
entire crowd pressed around him, and the living mass, with shouts 
and hurras bore him, in their midst, to the hotel, the cheering and 
shouting being kept up incessantly, until Mr. D., by dint of great 
exertion, got into the building. Just here a scene was enacted that 
would really have been a "study" for a Hogarth. After the great 



THE OTTAWA DEBATE 141 

mass had left the ground, with Mr. Lincoln and his committee look- 
ing on, with the look of a boy who had "let a bird go," Mr. L. was 
seized upon by a dozen or more sturdy republicans, who put him on 
their shoulders, and, preceded by a band, and surrounded by a 
lonesome squad of fifty or a hundred, tailed in after the mass of people, 
who had halted, blocking up the street about the Geiger House. This 
funereal escort passed through the crowd and bore Mr. L., to his 
quarters, which were in another direction, with his long arms about 
his carriers' shoulders, his long legs dangling nearly to the ground, 
while his long face was an incessant contortion to wear a winning 
smile that succeeded in being only a ghastly one. — But the dust may 
have been productive of this effect. It was really not a prett}" 
picture, though hugely an amusing one; but Mr. L., like ourself, is 
not good material for the former. We suppose that this farce was 
deemed necessary as an afterpiece to the three act tragedy on the 
stand. "The impalement of Hon. Abraham Lincoln." — It was in 
full keeping with that gentleman's tailing tactics since the com- 
mencement of the canvass. 

The result of the debate at Ottawa, as the reader will admit on 
perusing it, was a most overwhelming overthrow of Mr. Lincoln. It 
places him in his true attitude before the people of the state, which no 
shuffling or pettifogging dodging can get him out of. He will be 
forced to stand square up to his abolition platform or back clear down. 
At Ottawa he beat an inglorious retreat, and shirked the issue at the 
first joust in the lists of his own suggestion. 

We shall probably be able to give the debate in tomorrow's Register. 

[Chicago Times, August 22, 1858] 

THE CAMPAIGN-DOUGLAS AMONG THE PEOPLE 



Joint Discussion at Ottawa.— Lincoln Breaks Down.— Enthusiasm of 
the People!— The Battle Foug-ht and Won.— Lincoln's Heart Fails 
Him!— Lincoln's Legs Fail Him!— Lincoln's Tong"ue Fails Him! — 
Lincoln's Arms Fail Him!— Lincoln Fails All Over!!— The People 
Refuse to Support Him!— The People Laug-h at Him!— Doug-las the 
Champion of the People!— Douglas Skins the "Living" Dog."— The 
"Dead Lion" Frightens the Canine.— Douglas "Trotting" Lin- 
coln Out.— Doug"las "Concludes" on Abe 

On Saturday, the first of the series of joint discussions between 
Lincoln and Douglas took place at Ottawa. Below we publish a full 
report of the speeches. 



142 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

At an early hour Ottawa was alive with people. From daylight till 
three o'clock in the afternoon the crowds came in, by train, by canal- 
boat, and by wagon, carriage, buggy, and on horseback. Morris, 
Joliet, and all the towns on the railroad, above and below Ottawa, 
sent up their delegates. Lincoln on Friday night left Peoria, and 
passed up the road to Morris, where he staid over, in order that he 
might have the appearance of being escorted to Ottawa by the crowds 
who filled the special train on Saturday morning. Douglas left Peru 
in the morning in a carriage, escorted by a large delegation on horse- 
back, and in vehicles. The procession as it passed along the road 
received new accessions at every cross-road and stopping place, and 
when it reached Ottawa it was nearly a mile in length. As it passed 
through the streets the people from the sidewalks, from windows, 
piazzas, house-tops, and every available standing point, cheered and 
welcomed him. Upon his arrival at the Geiger House he was wel- 
comed by Wm. H. H. Cushman, in the following remarks: 

Mr. Douglas responded in a few appropriate remarks, and through- 
out the entire proceedings was cheered most enthusiastically. 

At two o'clock the multitude gathered in the public square, the sun 
shining down with great intensity, and the few trees affording but 
little shade. It would seem that the most exposed part of the city 
was selected for the speaking. After a long delay, the discussion was 
opened by Judge Douglas, who spoke as follows: 

When Douglas had concluded the shouts were tremendous: his 
excoriation of Lincoln was so severe, that the Republicans hung their 
heads in shame. The Democrats, however, were loud in their vocif- 
eration. About two-thirds of the meeting at once surrounded Doug- 
las, and with music, cheers, and every demonstration of enthusiastic 
admiration they escorted him to his quarters at the hotel, where for 
several minutes they made the welkin ring with their cheers, and 
applause. 

Lincoln in the meantime seemed to have been paralyzed. He stood 
upon the stage looking wildly at the people as they surrounded the 
triumphant Douglas, and, with mouth wide open, he could not find a 
friend to say one word to him in his distress. It was a delicate point 
for Republicans who had witnessed his utter defeat, and who knew 
how severely he felt it, to offer him condolence, or bid him hope for 



THE OTTAWA DEBATE 143 

better success again. The only thing they could say was that Lincoln 
ought not to travel round with Douglas, and had better not meet him 
any more. When Douglas and the Democrats had left the square, 
Lincoln essayed to descend from the stage, but his limbs refused to do 
their office. During Douglas' last speech Lincoln had suffered se- 
verely; alternately burning with fever, and then suddenly chilled with 
shame, his respiratory organs had become obstructed, his limbs got 
cold, and he was unable to walk. In this extremity, the Republican 
Marshall called half a dozen men, who, lifting Lincoln in their arms, 
carried him along. By some mismanagement the men selected for 
this office happened to be very short in stature, and the consequence 
was, that while Lincoln's head and shoulders towered above theirs, 
his feet dragged on the ground. Such an exhibition as the '' toting " 
of Lincoln from the square to his lodgings was never seen at Ottawa 
before. It was one of the richest farces we have ever witnessed, and 
provoked the laughter of all, Democrats and Republicans, who 

happened to see it. 

[Peoria Transcript, August 25, 1858] 
The report made current by the Chicago Times and copied into the 
Democrat of this city, that Lincoln interrupted Douglas during the 
delivery of his closing speech, and was pulled back by the committee, 
is as silly as it is false. We stood close to Mr. Lincoln on the platform 
during the whole tim^e, and no scene of the kind reported took place, 
nor nothing of the kind. 

[Chicago Journal, August 23, 1858] 
The Late Mr. Douglas.— Since the flailing Senator Douglas received 
at Ottawa on Saturday, we suggest that his friends hereafter address 
him as the late Mr. Douglas. 

[Louisville, Ky., Democrat, August 26, 1858] 
The Louisville Journal in speaking of the debate between Lincoln 
and Douglas at Ottawa, Illinois, says: That when the former de- 
scended from the platform he was seized by the assemblage and borne 
off on their shoulders in the center of a crowd of thousands of shouting 
friends. 

If they had foreseen how he would come out in the debate, they 
would have borne him off before it commenced. 

[Mr. Horace WmTE in Herndon's Life of Lincoln, 
by permission of D. Appleton & Co.] 
The next stage brought us to Ottawa, the first joint debate, August 
21. Here the crowd was enormous. The weather had been very 



144 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

dry and the town was shrouded in dust raised by the moving populace. 
Crowds were pouring into town from sunrise till noon in all sorts of 
conveyances, teams, railroad trains, canal boats, cavalcades, and pro- 
cessions on foot, with banners and inscriptions, stirring up such clouds 
of dust that it was hard to make out what was underneath them. The 
town was covered with bunting, and bands of music were tooting 
around every corner, drowned now and then by the roar of cannon. 
Mr. Lincoln came by railroad and Mr. Douglas by carriage from La 
Salle. A train of seventeen passenger cars from Chicago attested the 
interest felt in that city in the first meeting of the champions. Two 
great processions escorted them to the platform in the public square. 
But the eagerness to hear the speaking was so great that the crowd 
had taken possession of the square and platform and had climbed on 
the wooden awning overhead to such an extent that the speakers and 
committees and reporters could not get to their places. Half an hour 
was consumed in a rough-and-tumble skirmish to make way for them, 
and when finally this was accomplished, a section of the awning gave 
way with its load of men and boys, and came down on the heads of 
the Douglas committee of reception. But, fortunately, nobody was 
hurt. 

[Peoria Transcript, August 26, 1858] 

The complete manner in which Lincoln used up Douglas at Ottawa 
is evinced by the desperation of the latter's newspaper organs. The 
Chicago Times, construing the enthusiasm of the Republicans in bear- 
ing Lincoln upon their shoulders after the debate in triumph through 
the city, says that he " broke down completely, and his friends were 
obliged to carry him from the ground ! " That will do ; the Times has 
touched the bottom! 

[Whig, Quincy, Ills., August 26, 1858] 

THE ELEGANCIES OF DOUGLAS 

The character and disposition of Judge Douglas were pretty clearly 
exhibited in his speech at Ottawa, the other day. Among other 
equally elegant terms which he used on the occasion, were the follow- 
ing: In speaking of Mr. Lincoln he said he intended to "bring him 
to his milk" — that he advocated the doctrine that "niggers were 
equal to white men" — that he was going to "trot him (Lincoln) down 
to Egypt. " And much more of the same sort. 

Isn't this beautiful language to come from a United States Senator? 



THE OTTAWA DEBATE 145 

Mr. Douglas is as much a blackguard as he is a demagogue, and 
scarcely has an equal in either respect. 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, August 24, 1858] 

The interest in the debate at Ottawa is wide-spread Our 

own extra edition of 2,000 copies was exhausted before 9 o'clock and 
a third edition printed and sold during the day, 

[Chicago Daily Journal, August 23, 1858] 

THE EESULT OF THE FIRST LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 

DEBATE 

The Republicans were in their glory at Ottawa on Saturday, the 
foolish statements and falsehoods of the Chicago Times to the contrary 
notwithstanding. At least two-thirds of the vast assemblage that was 
attracted thither to listen to the Lincoln and Douglas Debate, was 
composed of Republicans, and every candid man present whom we 
have seen, bears testimony to the fact that Lincoln " took down " 
Douglas most effectually, on every point of the debate. The gen- 
uine enthusiasm of the occasion was all on the side of Lincoln, and so 
pleased were his friends with his strong and crushing reply to the 
misrepresentations and sophistications of Douglas, that when he 
concluded his speech, they rushed up to the stand, took him upon 
their shoulders, and bore him in triumphal procession to the house of 
Mayor Glover, where he stopped. 

In the evening the Republicans had a grand time. Preceded by a 
band of music, they marched in procession to Mayor Glover's, and 
escorted Messrs. Lincoln and Owen Lovejoy from thence to the Court 
House, where one of the most enthusiastic meetings that was ever 
gotten up, was held. Mr. Lovejoy made a telling speech — one of his 
characteristic sledge-hammer efforts, — after which, the masses — all 
Republicans — (for the Douglasites had hidden their heads in shame, 
at the, to them, inglorious result of the public debate,) formed a 
grand torchlight procession, and paraded the streets, with loud 
"hurrahs for Lincoln," until a late hour. 

Every Republican present at this first regular tussle between Lin- 
coln and Douglas, felt entirely satisfied, and the general opinion is that 
in the Third Congressional District, at least, Douglas is " a dead cock 
in the pit. " 



CHAPTER VI 

THE FREEPORT DEBATE 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, August 26, 1858] 

HO! FOR FREEPORT! 

The usual fare from Chicago to Freeport and return, is $7.20. But 
excursion tickets will be sold to those who wish to leave this evening 
or tomorrow morning for the Lincoln and Douglas meeting at Freeport 
tomorrow, for $4.35, or 60 per cent of the usual fare. By starting on 
the 9^ train tomorrow morning, you reach Freeport at 3 p. m., an 
hour after the speaking commences. All should, therefore, leave by 
tonight's train, which starts from the Wells Street depot, North Side , 
at 45 minutes after 10 o'clock. Comfortable sleeping cars will be put 
on, and all can reach Freeport in season for the whole fun, without 
losing any time. Tickets for the excursion will be sold at the Wells 
Street Galena passenger depot alone. 

[Freeport, III., Journal, August 26, 1858] 

HOUR OF ARRIVAL 

Lincoln spoke at Augusta, in Hancock County yesterday. He will 
probably arrive in town to-morrow forenoon, on the extra train from 
Dixon, which train will also bring up delegations from Ogle, Lee and 
Whiteside Counties. 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, August 25, 1858] 

LINCOLN AT FREEPORT 

Our readers in the Western part of the State will bear in mind the 
fact that the second encounter between LINCOLN and DOUGLAS 
comes off at Freeport on Friday, the 27th. On that occasion it is 
expected that Douglas will try to " bring Mr. Lincoln to his milk, " and 
all who are curious to know what the process used will be, and what 
will result therefrom, will not fail to be on hand. 

SECOND JOINT DEBATE 

Freeport, August 27, 1858 

Mr. Lincoln was introduced by Hon. Thomas J. Turner, and was 
greeted with loud cheers. When the applause had subsided, he said : 

147 



148 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Mr. Lincoln's Speech 

Ladies and Gentlemen: On Saturday last, Judge Douglas and 
myself first met in public discussion. He spoke one hour, I an hour 
and a half, and he replied for half an hour. The order is now reversed. 
I am to speak an hour, he an hour and a half, and then I am to reply 
for half an hour. I propose to devote myself during the first hour to 
the scope of what was brought within the range of his half-hour 
speech at Ottawa. Of course there was brought within the scope 
of ^ that half-hour's speech something of his own opening speech. 

In the course of that opening argument Judge Douglas proposed 
to me seven distinct interrogatories. In my speech of an hour and a 
half, I attended to some other parts of his speech, and incidentally, as 
I thought, answered one of the interrogatories then. I then distinctly 
intimated to him that I would answer the rest of his interrogatories. 
He made no intimation at the time of the proposition, nor did he in his 
reply allude at all to that suggestion of mine. I do him no injustice 
in saying that he occupied at least half of his reply in dealing with me 
as though I had refused to answer his interrogatories. I now propose 
that I will answer any of the interrogatories upon condition that 
he will answer questions from me not exceeding the same number. 
I give him an opportunity to respond. The Judge remains silent. 
I now say^ that I will answer his interrogatories, whether he answers 
mine or not; [applause] and after that I have done so, I shall pro- 
pound mine to him. [Applause.] 

[Owing to the press of people against the platform, our reporter 
did not reach the stand until Mr. Lincoln had spoken to this point. 
The previous remarks were taken by a gentleman in Freeport, who 
has politely furnished them to us.] 

I have supposed myself, since the organization of the Republican 
party at Bloomington, in May, 1856, bound as a party man by the plat- 
forms of the party, then and since. If in any interrogatories which 
I shall answer I go beyond the scope of what is within these platforms, 
it will be perceived that no one is responsible but myself. 

Having said thus much, I will take up the Judge's interrogatories 
as I find them printed in the Chicago Times, and answer them seriatim. 
In order that there may be no mistake about it, I have copied the in- 

iReads: "In" for "of." 
^Inserts: "to you" after "say." 




UiTtl«l»UMM*»ii!''''"-"'' 



JESIDENT HOOSEVELT, 



SITE OF THE FREEPORT DEBATE 

The granite boulder and tablets were placed by the Freeport Woman's Club to mark the site 



LINXOLX AT FREE PORT 149 

terrogatories in writing, and also my answers to it J The first one of 
these interrogatories is in these words: — 

Question 1. — ''I desire to know whether Luicoki to-day stands as 
he did in 1854, ia favor of the unconditional repeal of the Fugitive- 
Slave law?" 

Answer. — I do not now, nor ever did, stand in favor of the uncon- 
ditional repeal of the Fugitive-Slave law. [Cries of " Good I good ! "] 

Q. 2. ''I desire him to answer whether he stands pledged to-day 
as he did in 1854, against the admission of any more Slave States into 
the Union, even if the people want them? " 

A. I do not now, nor ever did, stand pledged against the admis- 
sion of any more Slave States into the Union. 

Q. 3. "I want to know whether he stands pledged against the 
admission of a new State into the Union with such a Constitution as 
the people of that Stat^ may see fit to make? " 

A. I do not stand pledged against the admission of a new State 
into the Union, with such a Constitution as the people of that State 
may see fit to make. [Cries of "Good! good!"'] 

Q. 4. "I want to know whether he stands to-day pledged to the 
abolition of slaver}^ in the District of Columbia?" 

A. I do not stand to-day pledged to the aboUtion of slaver}^ in the 
District of Columbia. 

Q. 5. "I desire him to answer whether he stands pledged to the 
prohibition of the slave trade between the different States?" 

A. I do not stand pledged to the prohibition of the slave trade be- 
tween the different states. 

Q. 6. "I desire to know whether he stands pledged to prohibit 
slavery m all the Territories of the United States, north as well as 
south of the Missouri Compromise line?" 

A. I am impliedly, if not expressly, pledged to a behef in the right 
and duty of Congress to prohibit slaven,' Ln all the United States Terri- 
tories. [Great applause.] 

Q. 7. ''I desire him to answer whether he is opposed to the ac- 
quisition of any new territory- unless slaver}- is first prohibited 
therein? " 

A. I am not generally opposed to honest acquisition of territory; 
and, in any given case, I would or would not oppose such acquisition, 
accordingly as I might think such acquisition would or would not 

i^Reads: "them" for "It." 
—6 



150 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

aggravate^ the slavery question among ourselves. [Cries of "Good! 
good!"] 

Now, my friends, it will be perceived, upon an examination of these 
questions and answers, that so far I have only answered that I was not 
pledged to this, that, or the other. The Judge has not framed his 
interrogatories to ask me anything more than this, and I have an- 
swered in strict accordance with the interrogatories, and have 
answered truly, that I am not pledged at all upon any of the points 
to which I have answered. But I am not disposed to hang upon the 
exact form of his interrogatory. I am rather disposed to take up at 
least some of these questions, and state what I really think upon them. 

As to the first one, in regard to the Fugitive-Slave law, I have never 
hesitated to say, and I do not now hesitate to say, that I think, under 
the Constitution of the United States, the people of the Southern 
States are entitled to a Congressional Fugitive-Slave law. Having 
said that, I have had nothing to say in regard to the existing Fugi- 
tive-Slave law, further than that I think it should have been framed 
so as to be free from some of the objections that pertain to it, without 
lessening its efficiency. And inasmuch as we are not now in an 
agitation in regard to an alteration or modification of that law, I 
would not be the man to introduce it as a new subject of agitation 
upon the general question of slavery. 

In regard to the other question, of whether I am pledged to*the 
admission of any more Slave States into the Union, I state to you very 
frankly that I would be exceedingly sorry ever to be put in a position 
of having to pass upon that question. I should be exceedingly glad to 
know that there would never be another Slave State admitted into the 
Union; [applause] but I must add that if slavery shall be kept out of 
the Territories during the Territorial existence of any one given Terri- 
tory, and then the people shall, having a fair chance and a clear field, 
when they come to adopt the constitution, do such an extraordinary 
thing as to adopt a slave constituion, uninfluenced by the actual pres- 
ence of the institution among them, I see no alternative, if we own 
the country, but to admit them into the Union. [Applause.] 

The third interrogatory is answered by the answer to the second, it 
being, as I conceive, the same as the second. 

The fourth one is in regard to the abolition of slavery in the District 
of Columbia. In relation to that, I have my mind very distinctly 

iReads: "agitate" for "aggravate." 



LINCOLN AT FREEPORT 151 

made up. I should be exceedingly glad to see slavery abolished in the 
District of Columbia. [Cries of "Good! Good!"] I believe that 
Congress possesses the constitutional power to abolish it. Yet as a 
member of Congress, I should not, with my present views, be in favor 
of endeavoring to abolish slavery in the District of Columbia, unless it 
would be upon these conditions: First, that the abolition should be 
gradual; second, that it should be on a vote of the majority of qualified 
voters in the District; and third, that compensation should be made to 
unwilling owners. With these three conditions, I confess I would be 
exceedingly glad to see Congress abolish slavery in the District of 
Columbia, and, in the language of Henry Clay, ''sweep from our 
capital that foul blot upon our nation. " [Loud applause.] 

In regard to the fifth interrogatory, I must say here, that as to the 
question of the abolition of the slave trade between the different States 
I can truly answer, as I have, that I am pledged to nothing about it. 
It is a subject to which I have not given that mature consideration 
that would make me feel authorized to state a position so as to hold 
myself entirely bound by it. In other words, that question has never 
been prominently enough before me to induce me to investigate 
whether we really have the constitutional power to do it. I could 
investigate it if I had sufficient time to bring myself to a conclusion 
upon that subject; but I have not done so, and I say so frankly to you 
here, and to Judge Douglas. I must say, however, that if I should be 
of opinion that Congress does possess the constitutional power to 
abolish the slave-trade^ among the different States, I should still not 
be in favor of the excercise of that power unless upon some conser- 
vative principle as I conceive it, akin to what I have said in relation 
to the abolition of slavery in the District of Columbia. 

My answer as to whether I desire that slavery should be prohibited 
in all the Territories of the United States, is full and explicit within 
itself, and cannot be made clearer by any comments of mine. So I 
suppose in regard to the question whether I am opposed to the acquisi- 
tion of any more territory unless slavery is first prohibited therein, my 
answer is such that I could add nothing by way of illustration, or mak- 
ing myself better understood, than the answer which I have placed in 
writing. 

Now in all this the Judge has me, and he has me on the record. I 
suppose he had flattered himself that I was really entertaining one set 

Reads: "slavery" for "thejslave trade." 



152 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

of opinions for one place, and another set for another place; that I was 
afraid to say at one place what I uttered at another. What I am 
saying here I suppose I say to a vast audience as strongly tending to 
Abolitionism as any audience in the State of Illinois, and I believe I 
am saying that which, if it would be offensive^ to any persons and 
render them enemies to myself, would be offensive to persons in this 
audience. 

I now proceed to propound to the Judge the interrogatories, so far 
as rhave framed them. I will bring forward a new installment when 
I get them ready. [Laughter.] I will bring them forward now, only 
reaching to number four. 

The first one is: — 

Question 1. If the people of Kansas shall, by means entirely un- 
objectionable in all other respects, adopt a State Constitution, and ask 
admission into the Union under it, before they have the requisite num- 
ber of inhabitants according to the English bill, — some ninety-three 
thousand, — will you vote to admit them? [Applause.] 

Q. 2. Can the people of the United States Territory, in any lawful 
way, against the wish of any citizen of the United States, exclude 
slavery from its limits prior to the formation of a State constitution? 
[Renewed applause.] 

Q. 3. If the Supreme Court of the United States shall decree that 
States cannot exclude slavery from their limits, are you in favor of 
acquiescing in, adopting, and following, such decision as a rule of 
political action? [Loud applause.] 

Q. 4. Are you in favor of acquiring additional territory, in disre- 
gard of how such acquisition may affect the nation on the slavery 
question? [Cries of "Good! Good!"] 

As introductory to these interrogatories which Judge Douglas pro- 
pounded to me at Ottawa, he read a set of resolutions which he said 
Judge Trumbull and myself had participated in adopting, in the first 
Republican State Convention, held at Springfield in October, 1854. He 
insisted that I and Judge Trumbull, and perhaps the entire Republican 
party, were responsible for the doctrines contained in the set of resolu- 
tions which he read, and I understand that it was from that set of 
resolutions that he deduced the interrogatories which he propounded 
to me, using these resolutions as a sort of authority for propounding 
those questions to me. Now, I say here to-day that I do not answer 
his interrogatories because of their springing at all from that set of 

'Reads: "affirmed" for "offensive." 



LINCOLN AT FREEPORT 153 

resolutions which he read. I answered them because Judge Douglas 
thought fit to ask them. [Applause.] I do not now, nor never did, 
recognize any responsibility upon myself in that set of resolutions. 
When I replied to him on that occasion, I assured him that I never 
had anything to do with them. I repeat here to-day that I never in 
any possible form had anything to do with that set of resolutions. 

It turns out, I believe, that those resolutions were never passed in 
any convention held in Springfield. [Cheers and laughter.] It turns 
out that they we're never passed at any convention or any pubhc 
meeting that I had any part in. I believe it turns out, in addition to 
all this, that there was not, in the fall of 1854, any convention holding 
a session in Springfield, calling itself a Republican State Convention; 
yet it is true there was a convention, or assemblage of men calling 
themselves a convention, at Springfield, that did pass some resolutions. 
But so little did I really know of the proceedings of that convention, 
or what set of resolutions they had passed, though having a general 
knowledge that there had been such an assemblage of men there,.that 
when Judge Douglas read the resolutions, I really did not know but 
they had been the resolutions passed then and there. I did not 
question that they were the resolutions adopted. For I could not 
bring myself to suppose that Judge Douglas could say what he did 
upon this subject without knowing that it was true. [Cheers and 
laughter.] I contented myself, on that occasion, with denying, as I 
truly could, all connection with them, not denying or afiirming 
whether they were passed at Springfield. Now, it turns out that he 
had got hold of some resolutions passed at some convention or pubhc 
meeting in Kane County. [Renewed laughter.] I wish to saj' here, 
that I don't conceive that in any fair and just mind this discovery 
relieves me at all. I had just as much to do with the convention in 
Kane County as that at Springfield. I am just as much responsible 
for the resolutions at Kane County as those at Springfield, — the 
amount of the responsibility being exactly nothing in either case; no 
more than there would be in regard to a set of resolutions passed in 
the moon. [Laughter and loud cheers.] 

I allude to this extraordinary matter in this canvass for some 
further purpose than anj'thing yet advanced. Judge Douglas did not 
make his statement upon that occasion as matters that he believed to 
be true, but he stated them roundlj' as heiyig true, in such form as to 
pledge his veracity for their truth. When the whole matter turns 



154 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

out as it does, and when we consider who Judge Douglas is, — that 
he is a distinguished Senator of the United States ; that he has served 
nearly twelve years as such ; that his character is not at all limited as 
an ordinary Senator of the United States, but that his name has 
become of world-wide renown, — it is most extraordinary that he should 
so far forget all the suggestions of justice to an adversary, or of pru- 
dence to himself, as to venture upon the assertion of that which the 
slightest investigation would have shown him to be wholly false. 
[Cheers.] I can only account for his having done so upon the sup- 
position that that evil genius which has attended him through his 
life, giving to him an apparent astonishing prosperity, such as to 
lead very many good men to doubt there being any advantage in 
virtue over vice, [cheers and laughter] — I say I can only account for 
it on the supposition that that evil genius has at last made up its 
mind to forsake him. [Continued cheers and laughter.] 

And I may add that another extraordinary feature of the Judge's 
conduct in this canvass — made more extraordinary by this incident — 
is, that he is in the habit, in almost all the speeches he makes, of charg- 
ing falsehood upon his adversaries, myself and others. I now ask 
whether he is able to find in anything that Judge Trumbull, for 
instance, has said, or in anything that I have said, a justification at 
all compared with what we have, in this instance, for that sort of 
vulgarity. [Cries of ''Good! Good! Good!"] 

I have been in the habit of charging as a matter of belief on my 
part that, in the introduction of the Nebraska bill into Congress, there 
was a conspiracy to make slavery perpetual and national. I have 
arranged from time to time the evidence which establishes and proves 
the truth of this charge. I recurred to this charge at Ottawa. I shall 
not now have time to dwell upon it at very great length; but inasmuch 
as Judge Douglas, in his reply of half an hour, made some points upon 
me in relation to it, I propose noticing a few of them. 

The Judge insists that, in the first speech I made, in which I very 
distinctly made that charge, he thought for a good while I was in fun! 
that I was playful; that I was not sincere about it; and that he only 
grew angry and somewhat excited when he found that I insisted upon 
it as a matter of earnestness. He says he characterized it as a false- 
hood as far as I implicated his moral character in that transaction. 
Well, I did not know, till he presented that view, that I had implicated 



LINCOLN AT FREEPORT 155 

his moral character. He is very much in the habit, when he argues 
me up into a position I never thought of occupying, of very cosily 
saying he has no doubt Lincoln is " conscientious " in saying so. He 
should remember that I did not know but what he was altogether 
"conscientious" in that matter. [Great laughter.] I can con- 
ceive it was possible for men to conspire to do a good thing, and I 
really find nothing in Judge Douglas's course or arguments that is 
contrary to, or inconsistent with, his belief of a conspiracy to national- 
ize and spread slavery as being a good and blessed thing; [continued 
laughter] and so I hope he will understand that I do not at all question 
but that in all this matter he is entirely " conscientious. " [More 
laughter and cheers.] 

But to draw your attention to one of the points I made in this case, 
beginning at the beginning. When the Nebraska bill was introduced, 
or a short time afterward, by an amendment, I believe, it was provid- 
ed that it must be considered ''the true intent and meaning of this 
Act not to legislate slavery into any State or Territory, or to exclude it 
therefrom, but to leave the people thereof perfectly free to form and 
regulate their own domestic institutions in their own way, subject only 
to the Constitution of the United States. " I have called his attention 
to the fact that when he and some others began arguing that they 
were giving an increased degree of liberty to the people in the Terri- 
tories over and above what they formerly had on the question of 
slavery, a question was raised whether the law was enacted to give 
such unconditional liberty to the people; and to test the sincerity of 
this mode of argument, Mr. Chase, of Ohio, introduced an amendment, 
in which he made the law — if the amendment were adopted — ex- 
pressly declare that the people of the Territory should have the 
power to exclude slavery if they saw fit. 

I have asked attention also to the fact that Judge Douglas and those 
who acted with him voted that amendment down, notwithstanding it 
expressed exactly the thing they said was the true intent and meaning 
of the law. I have called attention to the fact that in subsequent 
times a decision of the Supreme Court has been made, in which it has 
been declared that a Territorial Legislature has no constitutional 
right to exclude slavery. And I have argued and said that for men 
who did intend that the people of the Territory should have the right 
to exclude slavery absolutely and unconditionally, the voting down of 
Chase's amendment is wholly inexplicable. It is a puzzle, a riddle. 



156 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

But I have said that with men who did look forward to such a decision, 
or who had it in contemplation that such a decision of the Supreme 
Court would or might be made, the voting down of that amendment 
would be perfectly rational and intelligible. It would keep Congress 
from coming in collision with the decision when it was made. 

Anybody can conceive that if there was an intention or expectation 
that such a decision was to follow, it would not be a very desirable 
party attitude to get into, for the Supreme Court — all or nearly all 
its members belonging to the same party — to decide one way, when 
the party in Congress had decided the other way. Hence it would be 
very rational for men expecting such a decision to keep the niche in 
that law clear for it. After pointing this out, I tell Judge Douglas 
that it looks to me as though here was the reason why Chase's amend- 
ment was voted down. I tell him that, as he did it, and knows why 
he did it, if it was done for a reason different from this, he knows what 
that reason was, and can tell us what it was. I tell him, also, it will be 
vastly more satisfactory to the country for him to give some other 
plausible, intelligible, reason why it was voted down than to stand 
upon his dignity and call people liars. [Loud cheers.] 

Well, on Saturday he did make his answer; and what do you think 
it was? He says if I had only taken upon myself to tell the whole 
truth about that amendment of Chase's, no explanation would have 
been necessary on his part, — or words to that effect. Now, I say here 
that I am quite unconscious of having suppressed anything material 
to the case, and I am very frank to admit if there is any sound reason 
other than that which appeared to me material, it is quite fair for him 
to present it. What reason does he propose? — That when Chase came 
forward with his amendment expressly authorizing the people to 
exclude slavery from the limits of every Territory, General Cass pro- 
posed to Chase, if he (Chase) would add to his amendment that the 
people should have the power to introduce or exclude, they would let 
it go. (This is substantially all of his reply.) And because Chase 
would not do that, they voted his amendment down. Well, it turns 
out, I believe, upon examination, that General Cass took some part 
in the little running debate upon that amendment, and then ran awaj' 
and did not vote on it at all. [Laughter.] Is not that the fact? So 
confident, as I think, was General Cass that there was a snake some- 
where about, he chose to run away from the whole thing. This is an 
inference I draw from the fact that, though he took part in the debate, 
his name does not appear in the ayes and noes. But does Judge 



LINCOLN AT FREEPORT 157 

Douglas's reply amount to a satisfactory answer? [Cries of "Yes," 
" Yes, " and " No, " " No. "] There is some little difference of opinion 
here. [Laughter.] 

But I ask attention to a few more views bearing on the question of 
whether it amounts to a satisfactory answer. The men who were 
determined that that amendment should not get into the bill and spoil 
the place where the Dred Scott decision was to come in, sought an 
excuse to get rid of it somewhere. One of these ways — one of these 
excuses — was to ask Chase to add to his proposed amendment a pro- 
vision that the people might introduce slavery if they wanted to. 
They very well knew Chase would do no such thing, that Mr. Chase 
was one of the men differing from them on the broad principle of his 
insisting that freedom was better than slavery, — a man who would not 
consent to enact a law, penned with his own hand, by which he was 
made to recognize slavery on the one hand, and liberty on the other, 
as precisely equal; and when they insisted on his doing this, they very 
well knew they insisted on that which he would not for a moment 
think of doing, and that they were only bluffing him. I believe 
(I have not, since he made his answer, had a chance to examine the 
journals or Congressional Globe and therefore speak from memory) — 
I believe the state of the bill at that time, according to parliamentary 
rules, was such that no member could propose an additional amend- 
ment to Chase's amendment. I rather think this is the truth, — the 
Judge shakes his head. Very well. I would like to know, then, 
if they wanted Chase's amendment fixed over, why somebody else could 
not have offered to do it? If they wanted it amended, why did they not 
offer the amendment? Why did they stand there taunting and 
quibbling at Chase? [Laughter.] Why did they not put it in them- 
selves? 

But to put it on the other ground : Suppose that there was such an 
amendment offered, and Chase's was an amendment to an amendment 
until one is disposed of, by parliamentary law you cannot pile another 
on. Then all these gentlemen had to do was to vote Chase's on, and 
then, in the amended form in which the whole stood, add their own 
amendment to it, if they wanted to put it in that shape. This was all 
they were obliged to do, and the ayes and noes show that there were 
thirty-six who voted it down, against ten who voted in favor of it. The 
thirty-six held entire sway and control. They could in some form or 
other have put that bill in the exact shape they wanted. If there was 



158 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

a rule preventing their amending it at the time, they could pass that, 
and then. Chase's amendment being merged, put it in the shape they 
wanted. They did not choose to do so, but they went into a quibble 
with Chase to get him to add what they knew he would not add, and 
because he would not, they stand upon that flimsy pretext for voting 
down what they argued was the meaning and intent of their own bill. 
They left room thereby for this Dred Scott decision, which goes very 
far to make slavery national throughout the United States. 

I pass one or two points I have, because my time will very soon 
expire; but I must be allowed to say that Judge Douglas recurs again, 
as he did upon one or two other occasions, to the enormity of Lincoln — 
an insignificant individual like Lincoln, — upon his ipse dixit charging a 
conspiracy upon a large number of members of Congress, the Supreme 
•Court, and two Presidents, to nationalize slavery. I want to say that, 
in the first place, I have made no charge of this sort upon my ipse 
dixit. I have only arrayed the evidence tending to prove it, and 
presented it to the understanding of others, saying what I think it 
proves, but giving you the means of judging whether it proves it or 
not. This is precisely what I have done. I have not placed it upon 
my ipse dixit at all. 

On this occasion, I wish to recall his attention to a piece of evidence 
which I brought forward at Ottawa on Saturday, showing that he had 
made substantially the same charge against substantially the same 
persons, excluding his dear self from the category. I ask him to give 
some attention to the evidence which I brought forward that he him- 
self had discovered a "fatal blow being struck" against the right of 
the people to exclude slavery from their limits, which fatal blow he 
assumed as in evidence in an article in the Washington Union, pub- 
lished "by authority." I ask by whose authority? He discovers a 
similar or identical provision in the Lecompton Constitution. Made 
by whom? The framers of that Constitution. Advocated by whom? 
By all the members of the party in the nation, who advocated the 
introduction of Kansas into the Union under the Lecompton Con- 
stitution. 

I have asked his attention to the evidence that he arrayed to prove 
"that such a fatal blow was being struck, and to the facts which he 
brought forward in support of that charge, — being identical with the 
one which he thinks so villainous in me. He pointed it, not at a news- 



DOUGLAS AT FREEPORT 159 

paper editor merely, but at the President and his Cabinet and the 
members of Congress advocating the Lecompton Constitution and 
those framing that instrument. I must again be permitted to remind 
him that although my ipse dixit may not be as great as his, yet it 
somewhat reduces the force of his calling my attention to the enormity 
of my making a like charge against him. [Loud applause.] 
Go on, Judge Douglas. 



Mr. Doug-las's Reply 

Ladies and Gentlemen : The silence with which you have listened to 
Mr. Lincoln during his hour is creditable to this vast audience, com- 
posed of men of various political parties. Nothing is more honorable 
to any large mass of people assembled for the purpose of a fair dis- 
cussion than that kind and respectful attention that is yielded, not 
only to your political friends, but to those who are opposed to you 
in politics. 

I am glad that at last I have brought Mr. Lincoln to the conclusion 
that he had better define his position on certain political questions to 
which I called his attention at Ottawa. He there showed no disposi- 
tion, no inclination, to answer them. I did not present idle questions 
for him to answer, merely for my gratification. I laid the foundation 
for those interrogatories by showing that they constituted the plat- 
form of the party whose nominee he is for the Senate. I did not 
presume that I had the right to catechise him as I saw proper, unless 
I showed that his party, or a majority of it, stood upon the platform 
and were in favor of the propositions, upon which my questions were 
based. I desired simply to know, inasmuch as he had been nominated 
as the first, last, and only choice of his party, whether he concurred in 
the platform which that party had adopted for its government. In a 
few moments I will proceed to review the answers which he has given 
to these interrogatories; but, in order to relieve his anxiety, I will first 
respond to these- which he has presented to me. Mark you, he has 
not presented interrogatories which have ever received the sanction of 
the party with which I am acting, and hence he has no other founda- 
tion for them than his own curiosity. ["That's a fact."] 

First, he desires to know if the people of Kansas shall form a con- 
stitution by means entirely proper and unobjectional, and ask admis- 
sion into the Union as a State, before they have the requisite popula- 

iReads: "those" for "these." 



160 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

tion for a member of Congress, whether I will vote for that admission. 
Well, now, I regret exceedingly that he did not answer that inter- 
rogatory himself before he put it to me, in order that we might 
understand, and not be left to infer, on which side he is. [''Good, 
good. "] Mr. Trumbull, during the last session of Congress, voted 
from the beginning to the end against the admission of Oregon, 
although a Free State, because she had not the requisite population 
for a member of Congress. ["That's it. "] Mr. Trumbull would not 
consent, under any circumstances, to let a State, Free or Slave, come 
into the Union until it had the requisite population. As Mr. Trum- 
bull is in the field, fighting for Mr. Lincoln, I would like to have Mr. 
Lincoln answer his own question, and tell me whether he is fighting 
Trumbull on that issue or not. [" Good, put it to him, " and cheers.] 

But I will answer his question. In reference to Kansas, it is my 
■opinion that as she has. population enough to constitute a Slave State, 
she has people enough for a Free State. [Cheers.] I will not make 
Kansas an exceptional case to the other States of the Union. 
{" Sound, " and " Hear, hear. "] I hold it to be a sound rule, of uni- 
versal application, to require a Territory to contain the requisite 
population for a member of Congress before it is admitted as a State 
into the Union. I made that proposition in the Senate in 1856, and 
I renewed it during the last session, in a bill providing that no Ter- 
ritory of the United States should form a constitution and apply for 
admission until it had the requisite population. On another occasion 
I proposed that neither Kansas nor^ any other Territory should be 
-admitted until it had the requisite population. Congress did not 
adopt any of my propositions containing this general rule, but did 
make an exception of Kansas. I will stand by that exception. 
[Cheers.] Either Kansas must come in as a Free State, with whatever 
population she may have, or the rule must be applied to all the other 
Territories alike. [Cheers.] I therefore answer at once, that, it 
having been decided that Kansas has people enough for a Slave State, 
I hold that she has enough for a Free State. [" Good, " and applause.] 

I hope Mr. Lincoln is satisfied with my answer; [" He ought to be, " 
and cheers.] and now I would like to get his answer to his own inter- 
rogatory, — whether or not he will vote to admit Kansas before she has 
the requisite population. [" Hit him again. "] I want to know 
whether he will vote to admit Oregon before that Territory has the 

»Reads: "or" for "nor." 




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DOUGLAS AT FREEPORT 161 

requisite population. Mr. Trumbull will not, and the same reason 
that commits Mr. Trumbull against the admission of Oregon, commits 
him against Kansas, even if she should apply for admission as a Free 
State. ["You've got him," and cheers.] If there is any sincerity, 
any truth, in the argument of Mr. Trumbull in the Senate, against 
the admission of Oregon because she had not 93,420 people, although 
her population was larger than that of Kansas, he stands pledged 
against the admission of both Oregon and Kansas until they have 
93,420 inhabitants. I would like Mr. Lincoln to answer this question. 
I would like him to take his own medicine. [Laughter.] If he differs 
with Mr. Trumbull, let him answer his argument against the admission 
of Oregon, instead of poking questions at me. [" Right, good, good, " 
laughter and cheers.] 

The next question propounded to me by Mr. Lincoln is. Can the 
people of a Territory in any lawful way, against the wishes of any 
citizen of the United States, exclude slavery from their limits prior to 
the formation of a State constitution? I answer emphatically, as Mr. 
Lincoln has heard me answer a hundred times from every stump in 
Illinois, that in my opinion the people of a Territor}- can, by lawful 
means, exclude slavery from their limits prior to the formation of a 
State constitution. [Enthusiastic applause.] Mr. Lincoln knew that 
I had answered that question over and over again. He heard me 
argue the Nebraska bill on that principle all over the State in 1854, in 
1855, and in 1856, and he has no excuse for pretending to be in doubt 
as to my position on that question. It matters not what way the 
Supreme Court may hereafter decide as to the abstract question 
whether slavery may or may not go into a Territory under the Con- 
stitution, the people have the lawful means to introduce it or exclude 
it as they please, for the reason that slavery cannot exist a day or an 
hour anywhere, unless it is supported by local police regulations. 
[" Right, right. "] Those police regulations can only be established 
by the local legislature; and if the people are opposed to slavery, they 
will elect representatives to that body who will by unfriendly legisla- 
tion effectually prevent the introduction of it into their midst. If, on 
the contrary, they are for it, their legislation will favor its extension. 
Hence, no matter what the decision of the Supreme Court may be on 
that abstract question, still the right of the people to make a Slave 
Territory or a Free Territory is perfect and complete under the Ne- 



162 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

braska bill. I hope Mr. Lincoln deems my answer satisfactory on 
that point. 

[Deacon Bross spoke.] 

In this coimection, I will notice the charge which he has introduced 
in relation to Mr. Chase's amendment. I thought that I had chased 
that amendment out of Mr. Lincoln's brain at Ottawa ; [laughter] but 
it seems that it still haunts his imagination, and he is not yet satisfied. 
I had supposed that he would be ashamed to press that question 
further. He is a lawyer, and has been a member of Congress, and has 
occupied his time and amused you by telling you about parliamentary 
proceedings. He ought to have knowm better than to try to palm off 
his miserable impositions upon this intelligent audience. ["Good," 
and cheers.] The Nebraska bill provided that the legislative power 
and authority of the said Territory should extend to all rightful 
subjects of legislation consistent with the organic act and the Con- 
stitution of the United States. It did not make any exception as to 
slavery, but gave all the power that it was possible for Congress to 
give, without violating the Constitution, to the Territorial legislature, 
with no exception or limitation on the subject of slavery at all. The 
language of that bill which I have quoted, gave the full power and 
the full authority over the subject of slavery, affirmatively and 
negatively, to introduce it or exclude it, so far as the Constitution of 
the United States would permit. Wliat more could Mr. Chase give 
by his amendment? Nothing. He offered his amendment for the 
identical purpose for which Mr. Lincoln is using it, — to enable 
demagogues in the country to try and deceive the people. [" Good, 
hit him again," and cheers.] 

[Deacon Bross spoke.] 

His amendment was to this effect. It provided that the legislature 
should have the power to exclude slavery; and General Cass suggested, 
"Why not give the power to introduce as well as exclude?" The 
answer was. They have the power already in the bill to do both. Chase 
was afraid his amendment would be adopted if he put the alternative 
proposition, and so make it fair both ways, but would not yield. He 
offered it for the purpose of having it rejected. He offered it, as he has 
himself avowed over and over again, simply to make capital out of it 
for the stump. He expected that it would be capital for small politi- 
cians in the country, and that they would make an effort to deceive 
the people with it; and he was not mistaken, for Lincoln is carrying 



DOUGLAS AT FREEPORT 163 

out the plan admirably. ["Good, good.'"] Lincoln knows that the 
Nebraska bill, without Chase's amendment, gave all the power which 
the Constitution would permit. Could Congress confer any more? 
[" Xo, no. "] Could Congress go beyond the Constitution of the 
countrv-? We gave all — a full grant, with no exception in regard to 
slavery- one way or the other. We left that question as we left all 
others, to be decided by the people for themselves, just as thej^ 
pleased. I vs-ill not occupy my time on this question. I have argued 
it before, all over Illinois. I have argued it in this beautiful city of 
Freeport; I have argued it in the North, the South, the East, and the 
West, avowing the same sentiments and the same principles. I have 
not been afraid to avow my sentiments up here for fear I would be 
trotted down into Egj^t. [Cheers and laughter.] 

The third question which Mr. Lincoln presented is, If the Supreme 
Court of the United States shall decide that a State of this Union can- 
not exclude slaver}' from its own limits -^-ill I submit to it? I am 
amazed that Lincoln should ask such a question. ["A schoolboy 
knows better. "] Yes, a schoolboy does know better, Mr. Lincoln's 
object is to cast an imputation upon the Supreme Court. He knows 
that there never was but one man in America, claiming any degree of 
intelligence or decency, who ever for a moment pretended such a 
thing. It is true that the Washington Union, in an article published 
on the 17th of last December, did put forth that doctrine, and I 
denounced the article on the floor of the Senate, in a speech which Mr. 
Lincoln now pretends was against the President. The Union had 
claimed that slaver}' had a right to go into the Free States, and that 
any provision in the Constitution or laws of the Free States to the 
contrary were null and void. I denounced it in the Senate, as I said 
before, and I was the first man who did. Lincoln's friends, Trumbull, 
and Seward, and Hale, and Wilson, and the whole Black RepubHcan 
side of the Senate, were silent. They left it to me to denotmce it. 
[Cheers.] 

And what was the reply made to me on that occasion? Mr. 
Toombs, of Georgia, got up and undertook to lecture me on the 
ground that I ought not to have deemed the article worthy of notice, 
and ought not to have replied to it; that there was not one man, 
woman, or child south of the Potomac, in any Slave State, who did 
not repudiate any such pretension. Mr. Lincoln knows that that 
reply was made on the spot, and yet now he asks this question. He 
might as well ask me, Suppose Mr. Lincoln should steal a horse, would 



164 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

I sanction it, [laughter] and it would be as genteel in me to ask him, 
in the event he stole a horse, what ought to be done with him. He 
casts an imputation upon the Supreme Court of the United States, by 
supposing that they would violate the Constitution of the United 
States. I tell him that such a thing is not possible. [Cheers.] It 
would be an act of moral treason that no man on the bench could ever 
descend to. Mr. Lincoln himself would never in his partisan feelings 
so far forget what was right as to be guilty of such an act. [" Good, 
good."] 

The fourth question of Mr. Lincoln is. Are you in favor of acquiring 
additional territorj^ in disregard as to how such acquisition may affect 
the Union on the Slaverj' question?^ This question is very ingenious- 
ly and cunningly put. 

[Deacon Bross here spoke, sotto voce,-^the reporter understanding 
him to say, " Now we've got him. "] 

The Black Republican creed lays it down expressly that under 
no circumstances shall we acquire any more territory, unless slavery is 
first prohibited in the country. I ask Mr. Lincoln whether he is in 
favor of that proposition. Are you [addressing Mr. Lincoln] opposed 
to the acquisition of any more territory, under any circumstances, 
unless slavery is prohibited in it? That he does not like to answer. 
When I ask him whether he stands up to that article in the platform 
of his party, he turns, Yankee-fashion, and without answering it, asks 
me whether I am in favor of acquiring territory without regard to how 
it may affect the Union on the slavery question. [" Good. "] I 
answer that whenever it becomes necessary, in our growth and pro- 
gress, to acquire more territory, that I am in favor of it, without 
reference to the question of slavery; and when we have acquired it, I 
will leave the people free to do as they please, either to make it slave 
or free territory as they prefer. [Here Deacon Bross spoke; the 
reporter believes that he said, " That's bold. " It was said solemnly.] 
It is idle to tell me or you that we have territory enough. Our 
fathers supposed that we had enough when our territory extended to 
the Mississippi River; but a few years' growth and expansion satisfied 
them that we needed more, and the Louisana Territory, from the West 
branch of the Mississippi to the British possessions, was acquired. 
Then we acquired Oregon, then California and New Mexico. We 
have enough now for the present; but this is a young and a growing 

i Reads: "questions" for "question." 



DOUGLAS AT FREEPORT 165 

nation. It swarms as often as a hive of bees; and as new swarms are 
turned out each year, there must be hives in which they can gather and 
make their honey. [" Good. "] 

In less than fifteen years, if the same progress that has distinguished 
this country for the last fifteen years continues, every foot of vacant 
land between this and the Pacific Ocean, o"u-ned by the United States, 
will be occupied. Will you not continue to increase at the end of 
fifteen years as well as now? I tell you, increase, and multiply, and 
expand, is the law of this nation's existence. ["Good."] You can- 
not limit this great Republic by mere boundary- lines, saying, " Thus 
far shalt thou go, and no farther. " Any one of you gentlemen might 
as well say to a son twelve years old that he is big enough, and must 
not grow any larger; and in order to prevent his gro-^-th, put a hoop 
around him to keep him to his present size. "VMiat would be the 
result? Either the hoop must burst and be rent asunder, or the child 
must die. So it would be with this great nation. With our natural 
increase, growing with a rapidity unknown in any other part of the 
globe, with the tide of emigration that is fleeing from despotism in the 
old world to seek refuge^ in our own, there is a constant torrent 
pouring into this country that requires more land, more territory 
upon which to settle; and just as fast as our interests and our destiny 
require additional territory in the North, in the South, or on the 
islands of the ocean, I am for it; and when we acquire it, will leave the 
people, according to the Nebraska bill, free to do as they please on the 
subject of slavery and every other question. ["Good, good," "hur- 
rah for Douglas. "] 

I trust now that Mr. Lincoln will deem himself answered on his 
four points. He racked his brain so much in devising these four ques- 
tions that he exhausted himself, and had not strength enough to invent 
the others. [Laughter.] As soon as he is able to hold a council with 
his advisers, Lovejoy, Farnsworth, and Fred Douglas, he will frame 
and propound others. [" Good, good. " Renewed laughter, in which 
Mr. Lincoln feebly joined, saying that he hoped with their aid to get 
seven questions, the number asked him by Judge Douglas, and so 
make conclusions even.] You Black Republicans who say good, I 
have no doubt think that they are all good men. ["WTiite, white. "] 

I have a reason to recollect that some people in this countrj^ think 
that Fred Douglass is a very good man. The last time I came here to 

iReads: "Seek a refuge." 



166 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

make a speech, while talking from the stand to you, people of Freeport 
as I am doing to-day, I saw a carriage — and a magnificent one it was, 
— drive up and take a position on the outside of the crowd ; a beautiful 
young lady was sitting on the box-seat, whilst Fred Douglass and her 
mother reclined inside, and the owner of the carriage acted as driver. 
[Laughter, cheers, cries of "right," "what have you to say against 
it," etc.] I saw this in your own town. ["What of it?"] All I 
have to say of it is this, that if you. Black Republicans, think that the 
negro ought to be on a social equality with your wives and daughters, 
and ride in a carriage with your wife, whilst you drive the team, you 
have a perfect right to do so. ["Good, good," and cheers, mingled 
with hooting and cries of "white, white."] 

I am told that one of Fred Douglass's kinsmen, another rich black 
negro, is now traveling in this part of the State, making speeches 
for his friend Lincoln as the champion of black men. ["White 
men, white men," and "What have you^ to say against it?" "That's 
right," etc.] All I have to say on that subject is, that those of you 
who believe that the negro is your equal and ought to be on an 
equality with you socially, politically, and legally, have a right to 
entertain those opinions, and of course will vote for Mr. Lincoln. 
["Down with the negro," "no, no," etc.] 

I have a word to say on Mr. Lincoln's answer to the interrogatories 
contained in my speech at Ottawa, and which he has pretended to re- 
ply to here to-day. Mr. Lincoln makes a great parade of the fact that 
I quoted a platform as having been adopted by the Black Republican 
party at Springfield in 1854, which, it turns out, was adopted at 
another place. Mr. Lincoln loses sight of the thing itself in his ecsta- 
sies over the mistake I made in stating the place where it was done. 
He thinks that that platform was not adopted on the right " spot. " 

When I put the direct questions to Mr. Lincoln to ascertain whether 
he now stands pledged to that creed, — to the unconditional repeal of 
the Fugitive-Slave law, a refusal to admit any more Slave States into 
the Union, even if the people want them, a determination to apply the 
Wilmot proviso, not only to all the territory, we now have, but all that 
we may hereafter acquire, — he refused to answer; and his followers say 
in excuse, that the resolutions upon which I based my interrogatories 
were not adopted at the " right spot. " [Laughter and applause.] 

iReads: "What have you got to say against it?' 



DOUGLAS AT FREEPORT 167 

Lincoln and his political friends are great on "spots." [Renewed 
laughter.] In Congress, as a representative of this State, he declared 
the Mexican war to be unjust and infamous, and would not support it, 
or acknowledge his own country to be right in the contest, because he 
said that American blood was not shed on American soil in the " right 
spot. " [" Lay on to him. "] And now he cannot answer the questions 
I put to him at Ottawa because the resolutions I read were not adopted 
at the " right spot. " It may be possible that I was led into an error as 
to the spot on which the resolutions I then read were proclaimed, but 
I was not, and am not, in error as to the fact of their forming the basis 
of the creed of the Republican party when that party was^ first 
organized. [Cheers.] 

I will state to you the evidence I had, and upon which I relied for 
my statement that the resolutions in question were adopted at Spring- 
field on the oth of October, 1854. Although I was aware that such 
resolutions had been passed in this district, and nearly all the North- 
ern Congressional Districts and County Conventions, I had not noticed 
whether or not they had been adopted by any State Convention. 
In 1856, a debate arose in Congress between Major Thomas L. Harris, 
of the Springfield District, and Mr. Norton, of the Joliet District, on 
political matters connected w4th our State, in the course of which. 
Major Harris quoted those resolutions as having been passed by the 
first Republican State Convention that ever assembled in Illinois. I 
knew that Major Harris was remarkable for his accuracy, that he was 
a very conscientious and sincere man, and I also noticed that Norton 
did not question the accuracy of this statement. I therefore took it 
for granted that it was so ; and the other da}' when I concluded to use 
the resolutions at Ottawa, I wrote to Charles H. Lanphier, editor of the 
State Register at Springfield, calling his attention to them, telling him 
that I had been informed that Major Harris was lying sick at Spring- 
field, and desiring him to call upon him and ascertain all the facts 
concerning the resolutions, the time and the place where they were 
adopted. In reply, Mr. Lanphier sent me two copies of his paper, 
which I have here. The first is a copy of the State Register, published 
at Springfield, Mr. Lincoln's own town, on the 16th of October, 1854, 
only eleven days after the adjournment of the Convention, from 
which I desire to read the following — 

iReads: "party first" for "party was first." 



168 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

" During late discussions in this city, Lincoln made a speech, to which Judge 
Douglas rephed. In Lincoln's speech he took the broad ground that, accord- 
ing to the Declaration of Independence, the whites and blacks are equal. 
From this he drew the conclusion, which he several times repeated, that the 
white man had no right to pass laws for the government of the black man 
without the nigger's consent. This speech of Lincoln's was heard and ap- 
plauded by all the Abolitionists assembled in Springfield. So soon as Mr. 
Lincoln was done speaking, Mr. Codding arose, and requested all the dele- 
gates to the Black Republican Convention to withdraw into the Senate 
chamber. They did so; and after long deliberation, they laid down the fol- 
lowing abolition platform as the platform on which they stood. We call the 
particular attention of all our readers to it. " 

Then follows the identical platform, word for word, which I read 
at Ottawa. [Cheers.] Now, that was published in Mr. Lincoln's own 
town, eleven days after the Convention was held, and it has remained 
on record up to this day never contradicted. 

When I quoted the resolutions at Ottawa and questioned Mr. 
Lincoln in relation to them, he said that his name was on the com- 
mittee that reported them, but he did not serve, nor did he think he 
served, because he was, or thought he was, in Tazewell County at the 
time the Convention was in session. He did not deny that the reso- 
lutions were passed by the Springfield Convention. He did not know 
better, and evidently thought that they were; but afterward his 
friends declared that they had discovered that they varied in some 
respects from the resolutions passed by that convention. I have 
shown you that I had good evidence for believing that the resolutions 
had been passed at Springfield. Mr. Lincoln ought to have known 
better; but not a word is said about his ignorance on the subject, 
whilst I, notwithstanding the circumstances, am accused of forgery. 

Now, I will show you that if I have made a mistake as to the place 
where these resolutions were adopted, — and when I get down to 
Springfield I will investigate the matter, and see whether or not I 
have, — that the principles they enunciate were adopted as the Black 
Republican platform, ["White, white"] in the various counties and 
Congressional Districts throughout the north end of the State in 1854. 
This platform was adopted in nearly every county that gave a Black 
Republican majority for the Legislature in that year, and here is a 
man [pointing to Mr. Denio, who sat on the stand near Deacon Bross] 
who knows as well as any living man that it was the creed of the Black 
Republican party at that time. I would be willing to call Denio as a 
witness, or any other honest man belonging to that party. I will now 



DOUGLAS AT FREEPORT 169 

read the resolutions adopted at the Rockford Convention on the 30th 
of August, 1854, which nominated Washburne for Congress. You 
elected him on the following platform: — 

" Resolved, That the continued and increasing aggressions of slavery in our 
country are destructive of the best rights of a free people, and that such 
aggressions cannot be successfully resisted without the united political action 
of all good men. 

" Resolved, That the citizens of the United States hold in their hands peace- 
ful, constitutional, and efficient remedy against the encroachments of the 
slave power, — the ballot-box ; and if that remedy is boldly and wisely applied, 
the principles of liberty and eternal justice will be estabUshed. 

" Resolved, That we accept this issue forced upon us by the slave power, and, 
in defense of freedom, will co-operate and be known as Republicans, pledged 
to the accomplishment of the following purposes: — 

" To bring the Administration of the Government back to the control of 
first principles; to restore Kansas and Nebraska to the position of Free Ter- 
ritories; to repeal and entirely abrogate the Fugitive-Slave law; to restrict 
slavery to those States in which it exists; to prohibit the admission of any 
more Slave States into the Union; to exclude slavery from all the Territories 
over which the General Government has exclusive jurisdiction; and to resist 
the acquisition of any more Territories, unless the introduction of slavery 
therein forever shall have been prohibited. 

" Resolved, That in furtherance of these principles we will use such constitu- 
tional and lawful means as shall seem best adapted to their accomplishment, 
and that we will support no man for office under the General or State Govern- 
ment who is not positively committed to the support of these principles, and 
whose personal character and conduct is not a guarantee that he is reliable, 
and shall abjure all party allegiance and ties. 

" Resolved, That we cordially invite persons of all former political parties 
whatever, in favor of the object expressed in the above resolutions, to unite 
with us in carrying them into effect." [Senator Douglas was frequently 
interrupted in reading these resolutions by loud cries of "Good, good," 
"that's the doctrine," and vociferous applause.] 

Well, you think that is a very good platform, do you not? [''Yes, 
yes, all right, " and cheers.] If you do, if you approve it now, and 
think it is all right, you will not join with those men who say that I 
libel you by calling these your principles, will you? ["Good, good, 
hit him again," and great laughter and cheers.] Now, Mr. Lincoln 
complains; Mr. Lincoln charges that I did you and him injustice by 
saying that this was the platform of your party. [Renewed laughter.] 
I am told that Washburne made a speech in Galena last night, in 
which he abused me awfully for bringing to light this platform, on 
which he was elected to Congress. He thought that you had forgotten 
it, as he and Mr. Lincoln desires to. [Laughter.] He did not deny but 



170 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

that you had adopted it. and that he had subscribed to and was 
pledged by' it, but he did not think it was fair to call it up and remind 
the people that it was their platform. [Here Deacon Bross spoke.] 

But I am glad to find that you are more honest in your Abolitionism 
than your leaders, by avowing that it is your platform, and right in 
your opinion. [Laughter, ''You have them, good, good."] 

In the adoption of that platform, you not only declared that you 
would resist the admission of any more Slave States, and work for the 
repeal of the Fugitive-Slave law, but you pledged yourselves not to 
vote for any man for State or Federal offices who was not committed 
to these principles. ['"Exactly so, exactly so," cheers.] You were 
thus committed. Similar resolutions to those were adopted in your 
county Convention here, and now with your admissions that they are 
vour platform and embody your sentiments now as they did then, 
what do you think of Mr. Lincoln, your candidate for the L^nited 
States Senate, who is attempting to dodge the responsibility of this 
platform, because it was not adopted in the right spot. [Shouts of 
laughter, •" Hurrah for Douglas. "] I thought that it was adopted in 
Springfield; but it turns out it was not, that it was adopted at Rock- 
ford, and in the various cotmties which comprise this Congressional 
District. When I get into the next district, I will show that the 
same platform was adopted there, and so on through the State, until 
I nail the responsibility of it upon the back of the Black RepubHcan 
party throughout the State. [''White, white," "three cheers for 
Douglas. "] 

A Voice. — Couldn't you modify, and call it brown? [Laughter.] 

Mr. Douglas. — Not a bit. I thought that you were becoming a 
little brown when your members in Congress voted for the Crittenden- 
Montgomery- bill; but since you have backed out from that position 
and gone back to AboHtionism you are black, and not brown. [Shouts 
of laughter, and a voice, "Can't you ask him another question?"] 

Gentlemen, I have shown you what your platform was in 1854. 
You still adhere to it. The same platform was adopted by nearly all 
the counties where the Black RepubHcan party had a majority in 
1854. I wish now to call your attention to the action of your repre- 
sentatives in the Legislature when they assembled together at Spring- 
field. In the first place, you must remember that this was the 
organization of a new|party. It is so declared in the resolutions 

iReads: "to" for "by." 



DOUGLAS AT FREEPORT 171 

themselves, which say that you are going to dissolve all old party ties 
and call the new party Republican. The old Whig party was to have 
its throat cut from ear to ear, and the Democratic party was to be 
annihilated and blotted out of existence, whilst in Ueu of these parties 
the Black Republican party was to be organized on this AboHtion 
platform. You know who the chief leaders were in breaking up and 
destro^Tug these two great parties. Lincoln on the one hand, and 
Trumbull on the other, being disappointed pohticians, [laughter] and 
having retired or been driven to obscurity by an outraged constitu- 
ency because of their political sins, formed a scheme to Abohtionize 
the two parties, and lead the Old Line Whigs and Old Line Democrats 
captive, bound hand and foot, into the Abohtion camp. Giddings, 
Chase, Fred Douglass, and Lovejoy were here to christen them when- 
ever they were brought in. [Great laughter.] Lincoln went to work 
to dissolve the Old Line Whig party. Clay was dead; and although 
the sod was not yet green on his grave, this man undertook to bring 
into disrepute those great Compromise measures of ISoO, with which 
Clay and Webster were identified. 

Up to 1854 the Old Whig party and the Democratic party had stood 
on a common platform so far as this slaver}' question was concerned. 
You Whigs and we Democrats differed about the bank, the tariff, 
distribution, the specie circular, and the sub-treasur\', but we agreed 
on this slaver}' question, and the true mode of preser\'ing the peace and 
harmony of the Union. The Compromise measures of ISoO were in- 
troduced by Clay, were defended by Webster, and supported by Cass, 
and were approved by Fillmore, and sanctioned by the Xational men 
of both parties. They constituted a common plank upon which both 
Whigs and Democrats stood. In 1S52 the Whig party, in its last 
Xational Convention at Baltimore, indorsed and approved these 
measures of Clay, and so did the Xational Convention of the Demo- 
cratic party held that same year. Thus the Old Line Whigs and the 
Old Line Democrats stood pledged to the great principle of self- 
government, which guarantees to the people of each Territory- the 
right to decide the slaver}- question for themselves. In 1S54. after 
the death of Clay and Webster, Mr. Lincoln, on the part of the Whigs, 
undertook to Abolitionize the TMiig party, by dissoh^ing it. trans- 
ferring the members into the Abolition camp, and making them train 
under Giddings. Fred Douglass, Lovejoy. Chase. Famsworth. and 
other Abolition leaders. Trumbull undertook to dissolve the Demo- 



172 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

cratic party by taking old Democrats into the Abolition camp. 
Mr. Lincoln was aided in his efforts by many leading Whigs through- 
out the State, your member of Congress, Mr. Washburne, being one 
of the most active. [Good fellow.] Trumbull was aided by many 
renegades from the Democratic party, among whom were John 
Wentworth, [laughter] Tom Turner, and others, with whom you 
are familiar. 

[Mr. Turner, who was one of the moderators, here interposed, and 
said that he had drawn the resolutions which Senator Douglas had 
read.] 

Mr. Douglas. — Yes, and Turner says that he drew these resolu- 
tions. [" Hurrah for Turner, " " Hurrah for Douglas. "] That is 
right; give Turner cheers for drawing the resolutions if you approve 
them. If he drew those resolutions, he will not deny that they are 
the creed of the Black Republican party. 

Mr. Turner. — They are our creed exactly. [Cheers.] 

Mr. Douglas. — And yet Lincoln denies that he stands on them. 
[" Good, good, " and laughter.] Mr. Turner says that the creed of the 
Black Republican party is the admission of no more Slave States, and 
yet Mr. Lincoln declares that he would not like to be placed in a posi- 
tion where he would have to vote for them. All I have to say to 
friend Lincoln is, that I do not think there is much danger of his 
being placed in such a position. [More laughter.] As Mr. Lincoln 
would be very sorry to be placed in such an embarrassing position as 
to be obliged to vote on the admission of any more Slave States, I 
propose, out of mere kindness, to relieve him from any such necessity. 
[Renewed laughter and cheers.] 

When the bargain between Lincoln and Trumbull was completed 
for Abolitionizing the Whig and Democratic parties, they "spread" 
over the State, Lincoln still pretending to be an Old Line Whig, in 
order to " rope in " the Whigs, and Trumbull pretending to be as good 
a Democrat as he ever was, in order to coax the Democrats over into 
the Abolition ranks. [" That's exactly what we want. "] They played 
the part that " decoy ducks " play down on the Potomac River. In 
that part of the country they make artificial ducks, and put them on 
the water in places where the wild ducks are to be found, for the pur- 
pose of decoying them. Well, Lincoln and Trumbull played the part 
of these " decoy ducks, " and deceived enough Old Line Whigs and Old 
Line Democrats to elect a Black Republican Legislature. When that 



DOUGLAS AT FREEPORT 173 

Legislature met, the first thing it did was to elect as Speaker of the 
House the very man who is now boasting that he wrote the Abolition 
platform on which Lincoln will not stand. ["Good," "Hit him 
again," and cheers.] I want to know of Mr. Turner whether or not, 
when he was elected, he was a good embodiment of Republican 
principles? 

Mr. Turner. — I hope I was then, and am now. 

Mr. Douglas. — He swears^ that he hopes he was then, and is now. 
He wrote that Black Republican platform, and is satisfied with it now. 
[" Hurrah for Turner, " " Good, "' etc.] I admire and acknowledge 
Turner's honesty. Every man of you knows that what he says about 
these resolutions being the platform of the Black Republican party is 
true, and you also know that each one of these men who are shuffling 
and trying to deny it are only trying to cheat the people out of their 
votes for the purpose of deceiving them still more after the election. 
["Good," and cheers.] I propose to trace this thing a little further, 
in order that you can see what additional evidence there is to fasten 
this revolutionary platform upon the Black Republican party. When 
the Legislature assembled, there was a^ United States Senator to elect 
in the place of General Shields, and before they proceeded to ballot, 
Lovejoy insisted on laying down certain principles by which to govern 
the party. 

It has been published to the world and satisfactorily proven that 
there was, at the time the alliance was made between Trumbull and 
Lincoln to Abolitionize the two parties, an agreement that Lincoln 
should take Shield's place in the United States Senate, and Trumbull 
should have mine so soon as they could conveniently get rid of me. 
When Lincoln was beaten for Shield's place, in a manner I will refer 
to in a few minutes, he felt very sore and restive; his friends grumbled, 
and some of them came out and charged that the most infamous 
treachery had been practiced against him; that the bargain was that 
Lincoln was to have had Shield's place, and Trumbull was to have 
waited for mine, but that Trumbull, having the control of a few 
Abolitionized Democrats, he prevented them from voting for Lincoln, 
thus keeping him within a few votes of an election until he succeeded 
in forcing the party to drop him and elect Trumbull. Well, TrumbuU 
having cheated Lincoln, his friends made a fuss, and in order to keep 
them and Lincoln quiet, the party were obliged to come forward, in 

iReads: "Answers" for "swears." "Reads: "an" for "a." 



174 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

advance, at the last State election, and make a pledge that they 
would go for Lincoln and nobody else. Lincoln could not be silenced 
in any other way. 

Now, there are a great many Black Republicans of you who do not 
know this thing was done. ["White, white," and great clamor.] 
I wish to remind you that while Mr. Lincoln was speaking there was 
not a Democrat vulgar and blackguard enough to interrupt him. 
[Great applause and cries of, " Hurrah for Douglas. "] But I know 
that the shoe in pinching you. I am clinching Lincoln now, and you 
are scared to death for the result. [Cheers.] I have seen this thing 
before. I have seen men make appointments for joint discussions, 
and the moment their man has been heard, try to interrupt and pre- 
vent a fair hearing of the other side. I have seen your mobs before, 
and defy your wrath. [Tremendous applause.] My friends, do not 
cheer, for I need my whole time. The object of the opposition is to 
occupy my attention in order to prevent me from giving the whole 
evidence and nailing this double dealing on the Black Republican 
party. 

As I have before said, Lovejoy demanded a declaration of principles 
on the part of the Black Republicans of the Legislature before going 
into an election for United States Senator. He offered the following 
preamble and resolutions which I hold in my hand : — 

" Whereas, Human slavery is a violation of the principles of natural and 
revealed rights; and whereas the fathers of the Revolution, fully imbued with 
the spirit of these principles, declared freedom to be the inalienable birthright 
of all men; and whereas the preamble to the Constitution of the United States 
avers that that instrument was ordained to establish justice, and secure the 
blessings of liberty to our selves and our posterity; and whereas, in furtherance 
of the above principles, slavery was forever prohibited in the old Northwest 
Territory, and more recently in all that Territory lying west and north of the 
State of Missouri, by the Act of the Federal Government; and whereas the 
repeal of the prohibition last referred to was contrary to the wishes of the 
people of Illinois, a violation of an implied compact long deemed^ sacred by 
the citizens of the United States, and a wide departure from the uniform 
action of the General Government in relation to the extension of slavery; 
therefore, 

" Resolved, by the House of Representatives, the Senate concurring therein. 
That our Senators in Congress be instructed, and our Representatives re- 
quested to introduce, if not otherwise introduced, and to vote for, a bill to 
restore such prohibition to the aforesaid Territories, and also to extend a 
similar prohibition to all territory which now belongs to the United States, 
or which may hereafter come under their jurisdiction. 
iReads: "deemed and held." 



DOUGLAS AT FREEPORT 175 

" Resolved, That our Senators in Congress be instructed, and our Represen- 
tatives requested, to vote against the admission of any State into the Union, 
the Constitution of which does not prohibit slavery, whether the Territory 
out of which such State may have been formed shall have been acquired by 
conquest, treaty, purchase, or from original Territory of the United States. 

"Resolved, That our Senators in Congress be instructed, and our Repre- 
sentatives requested, to introduce and vote for, a bill to repeal an Act entitled 
'an Act respecting fugitives from justice and persons escaping from the 
service of their masters;' and, faihng in that, for such a modification of it as 
shall secure the right of habeas corpus and trial by jury before the regularly 
constituted authorities of the State, to all persons claimed as owing service 
or labor.' 

[Cries of "good," "good," and cheers.] Yes, you say "good," 
"good," and I have no doubt you think so. 

Those resolutions were introduced by Mr. Lovejoy immediately 
preceding the election of Senator. They declared, first, that the 
Wilmot Proviso must be applied to all territory north of 36 deg. 30 
min. Secondly, that it must be applied to all territory south of 36 
deg. 30 min. Thirdly, that it must be applied to all territory now 
owned by the United States; and finally, that it must be applied to all 
territory hereafter to be acquired by the United States. The next 
resolution declares that no more Slave States shall be admitted into 
this Union under any circumstances whatever, no matter whether 
they are formed out of territory now owned by us or that we may 
hereafter acquire, by treaty, by Congress, or in any manner whatever. 
(A voice, "That is right. "] You say that is right. We will see in a 
moment. The next resolution demands the unconditional repeal of 
the Fugitive-Slave law, although its unconditional repeal would 
leave no provision for carrying out that clause of the Constitution of 
the United States which guarantees the surrender of fugitives. If 
they could not get an unconditional repeal, they demanded that that 
law should be so modified as to make it as nearly useless as possible. 

Now, I want to show you who voted for these resolutions. When 
the vote was taken on the first resolution it was decided in the affirma- 
tive, — yeas, 41, nays 32. You will find that this is a strict party vote, 
between the Democrats on the one hand, and the Black Republicans 
on the other. [Cries of "White, white," and clamor.] I know your 
name and always call things by their right name. The point I wish to 
call your attention to is this: that these resolutions were adopted on 
the 7th day of February, and that on the 8th they went into an election 
for a United States Senator, and that day every man who voted for 



176 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

these resolutions, with but two exceptions, voted for Lincoln for the 
United States Senate. [Cries of " Good, good, " and cheers. " Give 
us their names. "] I will read the names over to you if you want them, 
but I believe your object is to occupy my time. [Cries of "That is it."] 

On the next resolution the vote stood — yeas 33, nays 40; and on the 
third resolution, — yeas 35, nays 47. I wish to impress it upon you 
that every man who voted for those resolutions, with but two excep- 
tions, voted on the next day for Lincoln for United States Senator. 
Bear in mind that the members who thus voted for Lincoln were 
elected to the Legislature pledged to vote for no man for office under 
the State or Federal Government who was not committed to this 
Black Republican platform. [Cries of "White, white," and "Good 
for you. "] They were all so pledged. Mr. Turner, who stands by me 
and who then represented you, and who says that he wrote those 
resolutions, voted for Lincoln, when he was pledged not to do so unless 
Lincoln was in favor of those resolutions. I now ask Mr. Turner 
[turning to Mr. Turner], did you violate your pledge in voting for Mr. 
Lincoln, or did he commit himself to your platform before you cast 
your vote for him? [Mr. Lincoln here started forward and grasping 
Mr. Turner shook him nervously and said "Don't answer. Turner, 
you have no right to answer."] 

I could go through the whole list of names here, and show you that 
all the Black Republicans in the Legislature, [" White, white. "] who 
voted for Mr. Lincoln, had voted on the day previous for these reso- 
lutions. For instance, here are the names of Sargent, and Little, of 
Jo Daviess and Carroll; Thomas J. Turner, of Stephenson; Lawrence, 
of Boone and McHenry; Swan, of Lake; Pinckney, of Ogle County; 
and Lyman, of Winnebago. Thus you see every member from your 
Congressional District voted for Mr. Lincoln, and they were pledged 
not to vote for him unless he was committed to the doctrine of no 
more Slave States, the prohibition of slavery in the Territories, and 
the repeal of the Fugitive-Slave law. Mr. Lincoln tells you to-day 
that he is not pledged to any such doctrine. Either Mr. Lincoln was 
then committed to these propositions, or Mr. Turner violated his 
pledges to you when he voted for him. Either Lincoln was pledged 
to each one of those propositions, or else every Black Republican 
[cries of "White, white"] Representative from this Congressional 
District violated his pledge of honor to his constituents by voting 
for him. 



DOUGLAS AT FREEPORT 177 

I ask you which horn of the dilemma will you take? Will you hold 
Lincoln up to the platform of his party, or will you accuse every Re- 
presentative you had in the Legislature of violating his pledge of 
honor to his constituents? [Voices: "We go for Turner," "We go 
for Lincoln; " " Hurrah for Douglas, " " Hurrah for Turner. "] There 
is no escape for you. Either Mr. Lincoln was committed to those 
propositions, or your members violated their faith. Take either 
horn of the dilemma you choose. There is no dodging the question; 
I want Lincoln's answer. He says he was not pledged to repeal the 
Fugitive-Slave law, that he does not quite like to do it; he will not 
introduce a law to repeal it, but thinks there ought to be some law; he 
does not tell what it ought to be; upon the whole he is altogether 
undecided, and don't know what to think or^ do. That is the sub- 
stance of his answer upon the repeal of the Fugitive-Slave law. I put 
the question to him distinctly, whether he indorsed-^ that part of the 
Black Republican platform which calls for the entire abrogation and 
repeal of the Fugitive-Slave law. He answers. No ! that he does not 
indorse^ that; but he does not tell what he is for, or what he will vote 
for. His answer is, in fact, no answer at all. Why cannot he speak 
out, and say what he is for, and what he will do? [Cries of "That's 
right. "] 

In regard to there being no more Slave States, he is not pledged to 
that. He would not like, he says, to be put in a position where he 
would have to vote one way or another upon that question. I pray 
you, do not put him in a position that would embarrass him so much. 
[Laughter.] Gentlemen, if he goes to the Senate, he may be put in 
that position, and then which way will he vote? 

A Voice. — How will you vote? 

Mr. Douglas. — I will vote for the admission of just such a State as 
by the form of their constitution the people show they want ; if they 
want slavery, they shall have it; if they prohibit slavery, it shall be 
prohibited. They can form their institutions to please themselves, 
subject only to the Constitution; and I, for one, stand ready to receive 
them into the Union. [" Three cheers for Douglas. "] Why cannot 
your Black Republican candidates talk out as plain as that when they 
are questioned? [Cries of "Good, good."] 

[Here Deacon Bross spoke.] 

■^ Reads: "or to do" for "or do." aReads: "endorsed" for "indorsed." 

3Reads: "endorse" for "indorse." 



178 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

I do not want to cheat any man out of his vote. No man is de- 
ceived in regard to my principles if I have the power to express 
myself in terms explicit enough to convey my ideas. 

Mr. Lincoln made a speech when he was nominated for the United 
States Senate which covers all these Abolition platforms. He there 
lays down a proposition so broad in its Abolitionism as to cover the 
whole ground. 

" In my opinion it [the slavery agitation] wiU not cease until a crisis shall 
Iiave been reached and passed. 'A house divided against itself cannot 
stand. ' I beheve this Government cannot endure permanently, half Slave 
and half Free. 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 of slavery will arrest the further spread, of it, and place it where 
the pubUc 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. " 

There you will find that Mr. Lincoln lays down the doctrine that this 
Union cannot endure divided as our fathers made it, with Free and 
Slave States. He says they must all become one thing, or all the 
other; that they must all be Free or all Slave, or else the Union cannot 
continue to exist; it being his opinion that to admit any more Slave 
States, to continue to divide the Union into Free and Slave States will 
dissolve it. I want to know of Mr. Lincoln whether he will vote for 
the admission of another Slave State. [Cries of " Bring him out. "] 

He tells you the Union cannot exist unless the States are all Free or 
all Slave ; he tells you that he is opposed to making them all Slave and 
hence he is for making them all free, in order that the Union may exist; 
and yet he will not vote against another Slave State, knowing that the 
Union must be dissolved if he votes for it. [Great laughter.] I ask 
you if that is fair dealing? The true intent and inevitable conclusion 
to be drawn from his first Springfield speech is, that he is opposed to 
the admission of any more Slave States under any circumstances.' If 
he is so opposed, why not say so? If he believes this Union cannot 
endure divided into Free and Slave States, that they must all become 
free in order to save the Union, he is bound as an honest man to vote 
against any more Slave States. If he believes it, he is bound to do it. 
Show me that it is my duty in order to save the Union, to do a par- 
ticular act, and I will do it if the Constitution does not prohibit it. 
[Applause.] I am not for the dissolution of the Union under any 

^Reads: "circumstance" for "circumstances." 



DOUGLAS AT FREEPORT 179 

circumstances. [Renewed applause.] I will pursue no course of 
conduct that will give just cause for the dissolution of the Union. The 
hope of the friends of freedom throughout the world rests upon the 
perpetuity of this Union. The down-trodden and oppressed people 
who are suffering under European despotism all look with hope and 
anxiety to the American Union as the only resting place and per- 
manent home of freedom and self-government. 

Mr. Lincoln says that he believes that this Union cannot continue 
to endure with Slave States in it, and yet he will not tell you distinctly 
whether he will vote for or against the admission of any more Slave 
States, but says he would not like to be put to the test. [Laughter.] 
I do not think he will be put to the test. [Renewed laughter.] I do 
not think that the people of Illinois desire a man to represent them 
who would not like to be put to the test on the performance of high 
constitutional duty. [Cries of "Good. "] I will retire in shame from 
the Senate of the L^nited States when I am not willing to be put to the 
test in the performance of my duty. I have been put to severe tests. 
[" That is so. "] I have stood by my principles in fair weather and in 
foul, in the sunshine and in the rain. I have defended the great 
principles of self-government here among you when Northern senti- 
ment ran in a torrent against me, [A voice, "That is so. "] and I have 
defended that same great principle when Southern sentiment came 
down like an avalanche upon me. I was not afraid of any test they 
put to me. I knew I was right; I knew my principles were sound; I 
knew that the people would see in the end that I had done right, and 
I knew that the God of heaven would smile upon me if I was faithful 
in the performance of my duty. [Cries of "Good," cheers and 
laughter.] 

Mr. Lincoln makes a charge of corruption against the Supreme 
Court of the United States, and two Presidents of the United States, 
and attempts to bolster it up by saying that I did the same against the 
Washington Union. Suppose I did make that charge of corruption 
against the Washington Union, when it was true, does that justify him 
in making a false charge against me and others? That is the question 
I would put. He says that at the time the Nebraska bill was intro- 
duced, and before it was passed, there was a conspiracy between the 
Judges of the Supreme Court, President Pierce, President Buchanan, 
and myself, by that bill and the decision of the court, to break down 
the barrier and establish slavery all over the Union. 



180 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Does he not know that that charge is historically false as against 
President Buchanan? He knows that Mr. Buchanan was at that time 
in England, representing this country with distinguished ability at the 
Court of St. James, that he was there for a long time before, and did 
not return for a year or more after. He knows that to be time, and 
that fact proves his charge to be false as against Mr. Buchanan. 
[Cheers.] Then, again, I wish to call his attention to the fact that at 
the time the Nebraska bill was passed, the Dred Scott case was not 
before the Supreme Court at aU; it was not upon the docket of the 
Supreme Court; it had not been brought there; and the Judges in all 
probability knew nothing of it. Thus the history of the country 
proves the charge to be false as against them. 

As to President Pierce, his high character as a man of integrity and 
honor is enough to vindicate him from such a charge; [laughter and 
applause] and as to myself, I pronounce the charge an infamous lie, 
whenever and wherever made, and by whomsoever made. I am wil- 
ling that Mr. Lincoln should go and rake up every public act of mine, 
every measure I have introduced, report I have made, speech delivered 
and criticise them; but when he charges upon me a corrupt conspir- 
acy for the purpose of perverting the institutions of the country, I 
brand it as it deserves. I say the history of the country proves it to 
be false; and that it could not have been possible at the time. 

But now he tries to protect himself in this charge, because I made a 
charge against the Washington Union. My speech in the Senate 
against the Washington Union was made because it advocated a 
revolutionary doctrine, by declaring that the Free States had not the 
right to prohibit slavery within their own limits. Because I made 
that charge against the Washington Union, Mr. Lincoln says it was a 
charge against Mr. Buchanan. Suppose it was: is Mr. Lincoln the 
pecuHar defender of Mr. Buchanan? Is he so mterested in the Fed- 
eral Administration, and so bound to it that he must jump to the 
rescue and defend it from every attack that I may make against it? 
[Great laughter and cheers.] I understand the whole thing. The 
Washington Union, under that most corrupt of all men, Cornelius 
Wendell, is advocating Mr. Lincoln's claim to the Senate. Wendell 
was the printer of the last Black Republican House of Representa- 
tives; he was a candidate before the present Democratic House, but 
was ignominiously kicked out ; and then he took the money which he 
had made out of the public printing by means of the Black Repub- 



DOUGLAS AT FREEPORT 181 

licans, bought the Washington Union, and is now publishing it in the 
name of the Democratic party, and advocating Mr. Lincohi's election 
to the Senate. Mr. Lincoln therefore considers an attack upon 
Wendell and his corrupt gang as a personal attack upon him. [Im- 
mense cheering and laughter.] This only proves what I have charged. 
— that there is an alliance between Lincoln and his supporters, and the 
Federal office-holders of this State, and Presidential aspirants out of 
it, to break me down at home. [A voice — '"That is impossible, " and 
cheering.] 

Mr. Lincoln feels bound to come in to the rescue of the Washington 
Union. In that speech which I delivered in answer to the Washington 
Union, I made it distinctly against the Union, and against the Union 
alone. I did not choose to go beyond that. If I have occasion to 
attack the President's conduct, I will do it in language that '«*ill not be 
misunderstood. TMien I differed with the President, I spoke out so 
that you aU heard me. ['' That you did, " and cheers.] That question 
passed away; it resulted in the triumph of my principle, by allowing 
the people to do as they please; and there is an end of the controversy. 
[" Hear, hear. "] Wlienever the great principle of self-government, — 
the right of the people to make their own Constitution, and come into 
the Union -^-ith slavery or without it, as they see proper, — shaU again 
arise, you wiU find me standing firm in the defense^ of that principle, 
and fighting whoever fights it. [" Right, right, " " Good, good, " and 
cheers.] If Buchanan stands, as I doubt not he will, by the recom- 
mendation contained in his Message, that hereafter all Stat^ 
constitutions ought to be submitted to the people before the admission 
of the State into the Union, he will find me standing by him firmly, 
shoulder to shoulder, in carrj'ing it out. I know Mr. Lincoln's 
object: he wants to divide the Democratic party, in order that he 
may defeat me and get to the Senate. 

Mr. Douglas's time here expired, and he stopped on the moment. 



Mr. Lincoln's Rejoinder 

As Mr. Lincoln arose he was greeted with vociferous cheers. He 
said: 

My Friends: It will readily occur to you that I cannot, in half an 
hour, notice all the things that so able a man as Judge Douglas can 

' Reads: "In defense" for -'in the defense." 



182 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

say in an hour and a half; and I hope, therefore, if there be anything 
that he has said upon which you would like to hear something from me, 
but which I omit to comment upon, you will bear in mind that it 
would be expecting an impossibility for me to go over his whole 
ground. I can but take up some of the points that he has dwelt upon, 
and employ my half hour specially on them. 

The first thing I have to say to you is a word in regard to Judge 
Douglas's declaration about the "vulgarity and blackguardism" in 
the audience, — that no such thing, as he says, was shown by any 
Democrat while I was speaking. Now, I only wish, by way of reply 
on this subject, to say that while I was speaking, / used no " vulgarity 
or blackguardism " toward any Democrat. [Laughter and applause.] 

Now, my friends, I come to all this long portion of the Judge's 
speech, — perhaps half of it, — which he has devoted to the various 
resolutions and platforms that have been adopted in the different 
counties in the different Congressional Districts, and in the Illinois 
Legislature, which he supposes are at variance with the positions I 
have assumed before you to-day. It is true that many of these 
resolutions are at variance with the positions I have here assumed. 
All I have to ask is that we talk reasonably and rationally about it 
I happen to know, the Judge's opinion to the contrary notwithstand- 
ing, that I have never tried to conceal my opinions, nor tried to 
deceive any one in reference to them. He may go and examine all 
the members who voted for me for United States Senator in 1855, 
after the election of 1854. They were pledged to certain things here 
at home, and were determined to have pledges from me; and if he will 
find any of these persons who will tell him anything inconsistent with 
what I say now, I will resign, or rather retire from the race, and give 
him no more trouble. [Applause.] 

The plain truth is this: At the introduction of the Nebraska 
policy, we believed there was a new era being introduced in the history 
of the Republic, which tended to the spread and perpetuation of 
slavery. But in our opposition to that measure we did not agree with 
one another in everything. The people in the north end of the State 
were for stronger measures of opposition than we of the central and 
southern portions of the State, but we were all opposed to the 
Nebraska doctrine. We had. that one feeling and that one sentiment 
in common. You at the north end met in your Conventions and 
passed your resolutions. We in the middle of the State and further 



LINCOLN AT FREEPORT 183 

south did not hold such Conventions and pass the same resolutions, 
although we had in general a common view and a common sentiment. 
So that these meetings which the Judge has alluded to, and the reso- 
lutions he has read from, were local, and did not spread over the 
whole State. We at last met together in 1856, from all parts of the 
State, and we agreed upon a common platform. You who held more 
extreme notions, either yielded those notions, or, if not wholly yield- 
ing them, agreed to yield them practically, for the sake of embodying 
the opposition to the measures which the opposite party were pushing 
forward at that time. We met you then and if there was anything 
yielded, it was for practical purposes. We agreed then upon a plat- 
form for the party throughout the entire State of Illinois, and now we 
are all bound, as a party, to that platform. And I say here to you, if 
any one expects of me — in the case of my election — that I will do 
anything not signified by our Republican platform and my answers 
here to-day, I tell you very frankly that person will be deceived. 

I do not ask for the vote of any one who supposes that I have secret 
purposes or pledges that I dare not speak out. Cannot the Judge be 
satisfied? If he fears, in the unfortunate case of my election, [laugh- 
ter] that my going to Washington will enable me to advocate senti- 
ments contrary to those which I expressed when you voted for and 
elected me, I assure him that his fears are wholly needless and 
groundless. Is the Judge really afraid of any such thing? 
[Laughter.] I'll tell you what he is afraid of. He is afraid we'll 
all pull together. [Applause and cries of "We will! we will!"] This 
is what alarms him more than anything else. [Laughter.] For my 
part, I do hope that all of us, entertaining a common sentiment in 
opposition to what appears to us a design to nationalize and perpe- 
tuate slavery, will waive minor differences on questions which either 
belong to the dead past or the distant future, and all pull together 
in this struggle. What are your sentiments? [" We will! We will! " 
loud cheers.] If it be true that on the ground which I occupy, — 
ground which I occupy as frankly and boldly as Judge Douglas does 
his, — my views, though partly coinciding with yours, are not as 
perfectly in accordance with your feelings as his are, I do say to you 
in all candor, go for him, and not for me. I hope to deal in all things 
fairly with Judge Douglas, and with the people of the State, in this 
contest. And if I should never be elected to any office, I trust I may 
go down with no stain of falsehood upon my reputation, notwith- 



184 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

standing the hard opinions Judge Douglas chooses to entertain of me. 
[Laughter.] 

The Judge has again addressed himself to the Abolition tendencies 
of a speech of mine made at Springfield in June last. I have so often 
tried to answer what he is always saying on that melancholy theme 
that I almost turn with disgust from the discussion, — from the 
repetition of an answer to it. I trust that nearly all of this intelligent 
audience have read that speech. ["We have! We have!"] If you 
have, I may venture to leave it to you to inspect it closely, and see 
whether it contains any of those "bugaboos" which frighten Judge 
Douglas. [Laughter.] 

The Judge complains that I did not fully answer his questions. If 
I have the sense to comprehend and answer those questions, I have 
done so fairly. If it can be pointed out to me how I can more fully 
and fairly answer him, I will do it,^ but I aver I have not the sense to 
see how it is to be done. He says I do not declare I would in any event 
vote for the admission of a Slave State into the Union. If I have been 
fairly reported, he will see that I did give an explicit answer to his 
interrogatories ; I did not merely say that I would dislike to be put to 
the test, but I said clearly, if I were put to the test, and a Territory 
from which slavery had been excluded should present herself with a 
State constitution sanctioning slavery, — a most extraordinary thing, 
and wholly unlikely^ to happen, — I did not see how I could avoid 
voting for her admission. But he refuses to understand that I said 
so and he wants this audience to understand that I did not say so. 
Yet it will be so reported in the printed speech that he cannot help 
seeing it. 

He says if I should vote for the admission of a Slave State I would 
be voting for a dissolution of the Union, because I hold that the Union 
cannot permanently exist half Slave and half Free. I repeat that I do 
not believe this Government can endure permanently half Slave and 
half Free; yet I do not admit, nor does it at all follow, that the admis- 
sion of a single Slave State will permanently fix the character and 
establish this as a universal slave nation. The Judge is very happy 
indeed at working up these quibbles. [Laughter and cheers.] Before 
leaving the subject of answering questions, I aver as my confident 
belief, when you come to see our speeches in print, that you will find 

'•• I will do it; but" omitted. 
^'"Ever" inserted after "unlikely." 



LINCOLN AT FREEPORT 185 

every question which he has asked me more fairly and boldly and 
fully answered than he has answered those which I put to him. Is 
not that so? [Cries of " Yes, yes. "] The two speeches may be placed 
side by side, and I will venture to leave it to impartial judges whether 
his questions have not been more directly and circumstantially 
answered than mine. 

Judge Douglas says he made a charge upon the editor of the Wash- 
ington Union, alone, of entertaining a purpose to rob the States of 
their power to exclude slavery from their limits. I undertake to say, 
and I make the direct issue, that he did not make his charge against 
the editor of the Union alone. [Applause.] I will undertake to 
prove by the record here that he made that charge against more and 
higher dignitaries than the editor of the Washington Union. I am 
quite aware that he was shirking and dodging around the form in 
which he put it, but I can make it manifest that he levelled his 
"fatal blow" against more persons than this Washington editor. 
Will he dodge it now by alleging that I am trying to defend Mr. 
Buchanan against the charge? Not at all. Am I not making the 
same charge myself? [Laughter and applause.] I am trying to 
show that you. Judge Douglas, are a witness on my side. [Renewed 
laughter.] I am not defending Buchanan, and I will tell Judge Doug- 
las that in my opinion, when he made that charge, he had an eye 
farther north than he has to-day. He was then fighting against 
people who called him a Black Republican and an Abolitionist. It 
is mixed all through his speech, and it is tolerably manifest that his 
eye was a great deal farther north than it is to-day. [Cheers and 
laughter.] The Judge says that though he made this charge, Toombs 
got up and declared there was not a man in the United States, except 
the editor of the Union, who was in favor of the doctrines put forth in 
that article. And thereupon I understand that the Judge withdrew 
the charge. Although he had taken extracts from the newspaper, and 
then from the Lecompton Constitution, to show the existence of a 
conspiracy to bring about a " fatal blow, " by which the States were to 
be deprived of the right of excluding slavery, it all went to pot as soon 
as Toombs got up and told him it was not true. [Laughter.] 

It reminds me of the story that John Phoenix, the California rail- 
road surveyor, tells. He says they started out from the Plaza to the 
Mission of Dolores. They had two ways of determining distances. 
One was by a chain and pins taken over the ground. The other was 



186 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

by a " go-it-ometer, " — an invention of his own, — a three-legged 
instrument, with which he computed a series of triangles between the 
points. At night he turned to the chain-man to ascertain what 
distance they had come, and found that by some mistake he had 
merely dragged the chain over the ground, 'without keeping any 
record. By the " go-it-ometer " he found he had made ten miles. 
Being skeptical about this, he asked a drayman who was passing how 
far it was to the Plaza. The drayman replied it was just half a mile; 
and the surveyor put it down in his book, — just as Judge Douglas 
says, after he had made his calculations and computations, he took 
Toomb's statement. [Great laughter,] I have no doubt that after 
Judge Douglas had made his charge, he was as easily satisfied about 
its truth as the surveyor was of the drayman's statement of the 
distance to the Plaza. [Renewed laughter.] Yet it is a fact that the 
man who put forth all that matter which Douglas deemed a "fatal 
blow " at State sovereignty, was elected by the Democrats as public 
printer. 

Now, gentlemen, you may take Judge Douglas's speech of March 
22d, 1858, beginning about the middle of page 21, and reading to the 
bottom of page 24, and you will find the evidence on which I say that 
he did not make his charge against the editor of the Union alone. I 
cannot stop to read it, but I will give it to the reporters. Judge Doug- 
las said: — 

"Mr. President, you here find several distinct propositions advanced boldly 
by the Washington Union editorially, and apparently authoritatively, and every 
man who questions any of them is denounced as an Abolitionist, a Free-soiler, 
a fanatic. The propositions are, first, that the primary object of all govern- 
ment at its original institution is the protection of persons and property; 
second, that the Constitution of the United States declares that the citizens 
of each State shall be entitled to all the pri-\aleges and immunities of citizens 
in the several States; and that, therefore, thirdly, all State laws, whether 
organic or otherwise, which prohibit the citizens of one State from settling 
in another with their slave propert.y, and especially declaring it forfeited, 
are direct violations of the original intention of the Government and Con- 
stitution of the United States; and, fourth, that the emancipation of the 
slaves of the Northern States was a gross outrage on the rights of property, 
inasmuch as it was involuntarily done on the part of the owner. 

" Remember that this article was published in the Union on the 17th of 
November, and on the 18th appeared the first article, giving the adhesion of 
the Union to the Lecompton Constitution. It was in these words: — 

" Kansas and her Constitution. — The vexed question is settled. The 
problem is solved. The dead point of danger is passed. All serious trouble 
to Kansas affairs is over and gone — ' 



LINCOLN AT FREEPORT 187 

"And a column, nearly, of the same sort. Then, when you come to look 
into the Lecompton Constitution, you find the same doctrine incorporated in 
it which was put forth editorially in the Union. What is it? 

"'Article 7, Section I. The right of property is before and higher than 
any constitutional sanction; and the right of the owner of a slave to such 
slave and its increase is the same and as invariable as the right of the owner 
of any property whatever. ' 

" Then in the schedule is a provision that the Constitution may be amended 
after 1864 by a two-thirds vote. 

'"But no alteration shall be made to affect the right of property in the 
ownership of slaves. ' 

" It will be seen by these clauses in the Lecompton Constitution that they 
are identical in spirit with this authoritative article in the Washington Union 
of the day previous to its indorsement of this Constitution. 

" When I saw that article in the Union of the 17th of November, followed 
by the glorification of the Lecompton Constitution on the 18th of November, 
and this clause in the Constitution asserting the doctrine that a State has no 
right to prohibit slavery within its Umits, I saw that there was a fatal blow 
being struck at the sovereignty of the States of the Union. " 

Here, he says, " Mr. President, you here find several distinct propo- 
sitions advanced boldly, and apparently authoritatively. " By whose 
authority. Judge Douglas? [Great cheers and laughter.] Again, he 
says in another place," It will be seen by these clauses in the Lecomp- 
ton Constitution that they are identical in spirit with this authoritative 
article. " By whose authority? [Renewed cheers.] Who do you mean 
to say authorized the publication of these articles? He knows that 
the Washington Union is considered the organ of the Administration. 
I demand of Judge Douglas by whose authority he meant to say those 
articles were published, if not by the authority of the President of 
the United States and his Cabinet? I defy him to show whom he 
referred to, if not to these high functionaries in the Federal Govern- 
ment. More than this, he says the articles in that paper and the 
provisions of the Lecompton Constitution are "identical," and. 
being identical, he argues that the authors are co-operating and 
conspiring together. He does not use the word "conspiring," but 
what other construction can you put upon it? He winds up with 
this : — 

"When I saw that article in the Union of the 17th of November, followed 
by the glorification of the Lecompton Constitution on the 18th of November, 
and this clause in the Constitution asserting the doctrine that a State has no 
right to prohibit slavery within its limits, I saw that there was a fatal blow 
being struck at the sovereignty of the States of this Union. " 



188 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

I ask him if all this fuss was made over the editor of this newspaper. 
[Laughter.] It would be a terribly "fatal blow " indeed which a single 
man could strike, when no President, no Cabinet officer, no member of 
Congress, was giving strength and efficiency to the movement. Out 
of respect to Judge Douglas's good sense I must believe he did not 
manufacture his idea of the "fatal" character of that blow out of 
such a miserable scapegrace as he represents that editor to be. But 
the Judge's eye is farther south now. [Laughter and cheers.] Then, 
it was very peculiarly and decidedly north. His hope rested on the 
idea of enlisting^ the great " Black Repubhcan " party, and making it 
the tail of his new kite. [Great laughter.] He knows he was then 
expecting from day to day to turn Repubhcan, and place himself 
at the head of our organization. He has found that these despised 
''Black Republicans" estimate him by a standard which he has 
taught them none too well. Hence he is crawling back into his old 
camp, and you will find him eventually installed in full fellowship 
among those whom he was then battling, and with whom he now 
pretends to be at such fearful variance. [Loud applause, and cries of 
^'Go on, go on. "] I cannot, gentlemen, my time has expired. 

[Chicago Times, August 29, 1858] 

THE CAMPAIGN.-THE DISCUSSION AT FREEPORT 



Doug-las and Lincoln.— 15,000 Present!— Lincoln on Pledg-es. —Lincoln 
"Aint Pledg-ed" to Anything! Lincoln Asks Questions! Lincoln 
Gets Answered!— A Leak Takes Place.— The "Lion" Frig-htened 
the "Dog-"!— Lincoln Gets Weak! Lincoln a Fountain!!— Speeches 
of the Candidates 

Friday was the day appointed for the joint discussion at Freeport 
between Douglas and Lincoln. 

On Thursday night Judge Douglas reached Freeport from Galena, 
and was met at the depot by a vast multitude of persons. As he 
stepped upon the platform, he was greeted with tremendous shouts 
and cheers. A grand salute was fired at the same time, which, as it 
resounded through the city, gave notice to the people that the cham- 
pion of popular rights had arrived, and thousands of persons flocked 
from the hotels and from all parts of the city, swelling the assemblage 
to not less than five thousand persons. A procession was formed, 
and, with not less than a thousand torches, music, the cheers of 
people, and the thunders of the cannon. Judge Douglas was escorted 

1^ Reads: "visiting" for "enlisting." 



THE FREEPORT DEBATE 189 

to the Brewster House. When the head of the procession reached 
the hotel, the ranks opened, and the carriage containing the people's 
guest drove up to the door. At this moment the scene was the 
grandest ever beheld in Freeport. The whole area of the streets in 
the vicinity of the hotel was densely packed; a few squares off, the 
cannon was belching forth its notes of welcome; a thousand torches 
blazed with brilliancy; the crowd cheered lustily, and from windows, 
balconies, house-tops, etc., there were to be seen the smiling faces 
and waving handkerchiefs of ladies. 

Friday's proceedings 

On Friday the day was heavy, and weather chilly and damp, yet, 
at two o'clock, there had assembled at the grove on the outskirts of the 
town, a multitude numbering not less than 15,000 persons, many of 
them ladies. Hon. Thomas J. Turner was moderator on the part of 
the Republicans, and Col. Mitchell on the part of the Democrats. At 
two o'clock the discussion commenced, and we give the speeches in the 
order that they were delivered. 

A PRELIMINARY SCENE 

Mr. Lincoln — Fellow Citizens, Ladies and Gentlemen — 

Deacon Bross — Hold on, Lincoln. You can't speak yet. Hitt 
ain't here, and there is no use of your speaking unless the Press and 
Tribune has a report. 

Mr. Lincoln — Ain't Hitt here? Where is he? 

A Voice. — Perhaps he is in the crowd. 

Deacon Bross — (After adjusting the green shawl around his classic 
shoulders, after the manner of McVicker in Brutus, advanced to the 
front of the stand and spoke.) If Hitt is in the crowd he will please 
to come forward. Is Hitt in the crowd? If he is, tell him Mr. Bross 
of the Chicago Press and Tribune wants him to come up here on the 
stand to make a verbatim report for the only paper in the Northwest 
that has enterprise enough to publish speeches in full. 

Joe Medill— That's the talk. 

Herr Kriesman here wiped his spectacles and looked into the crowd 
to see if he could distinguish Hitt. 

A Voice — If Hitt ain't here, I know a young man from our town 
that can make nearly a verbatim report, I guess. Shall I call him? 

Deacon Bross — Is he here. 



190 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

A Voice — "Yes, I see him, his name is Hitch." 

Loud cries for " Hitch " were made, and messengers ran wildly about 
enquiring "where is Hitch?" "where is Hitch?" 

After a delay, the moderator decided that the speaking must go on. 

Deacon Bross — "Well, wait, (taking a chair) I'll report the speech. 
Lincoln you can go on now. I'll report you. " 

Mr. Lincoln, though he had five minutes of his time left, then took 
his seat. 

During the delivery of Douglas' speech Lincoln was very uneasy; 
he could not sit still, nor would his limbs sustain him while standing. 
He was shivering, quaking, trembling, and his agony during the last 
fifteen minutes of Judge Douglas' speech was positively painful to the 
•crowd who witnessed his behavior. The weather was lowering, and 
occasionally showering, and this, together with the fearful blows of 
Douglas, had a terrible effect upon Lincoln. He lost all his natural 
powers, and it was discovered that whenever he moved about the 
stand there was a leak from the roof or elsewhere. The leak seemed to 
be confined to the " spot " where Lincoln stood ; his boots glistened with 
the dampness, which seemed to have the attribute of mercy for 

It droppeth like the gentle rain 
Upon the "place beneath. 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, August 30, 1858] 

GREAT DEBATE BETWEEN LINCOLN 

AND DOUGLAS AT FEEEPORT 



Fifteen Thousand Persons Present.— The Dred Scott Champion "Trot- 
ted Out" and "Broug-ht to His Milk."— It Proves to Be Stump- 
Tailed.— Great Caving--in on the Ottawa Forg-ery.— He Was "Con- 
scientious" about It.— Why Chase's Amendment Was Voted Down. 
—Lincoln Tumbles Him AH over Stephenson County.— Verbatim 
Report of Lincoln's Speech. — Douglas' Reply and Lincoln's Re- 
joinder 

The second great debate between Lincoln and Douglas came off at 
Freeport, on Friday afternoon. The day broke chilly, cloudy and 
lowering. Alternations of wind, and sunshine filled up the forenoon. 
At twelve o'clock the weather settled dismally, cold and damp, and the 
-afternoon carried out the promise of the morning with the single ex- 
ception of the rain. 



FHEKPORT HUSIXEKS DIRrCTORY 




'iiifi S;c|ii!t:!iso!i and ilfecliaiiic Sirecfs. 






I. 



W. HUft^PHREY, Proprietor. 

FREEPORT, ILLINOIS— THE BREWSTER HOUSE. 1860 

Lincoln was the guest of this hotel at the time of the debate 



THE FREEPORT DEBATE 191 

The crowd, however, was enormous. At nine o'clock the Carroll 
County delegation came in with a long procession headed by a band of 
music and a banner on which was inscribed: 

CARROLL COUNTY 

FOR 

ABRAHAM LINCOLN 

At ten o'clock a special train from Amboy, Dixon and Polo, arrived 
with twelve cars crowded full. Mr. Lincoln was on this train, and 
some two thousand citizens of Freeport and vicinity had assembled to 
escort him to the Brewster House. Six deafening cheers were given 
as our next Senator stepped from the cars; after which the whole 
company formed in procession and escorted him around the principal 
streets to the elegant hotel. Here the reception speech was delivered 
by Hon. Thomas J. Turner — to which Mr. Lincoln responded in a 
few appropriate remarks. Half an hour later a train of eight cars 
arrived from Galena. Another procession was formed, preceded by a 
banner on which was inscribed : 

THE GALENA LINCOLN CLUB. 

The delegation marched to the Brewster House and gave three 
rousing cheers for Abraham Lincoln. Mr. L. appeared on the balcony 
and returned his thanks amid a storm of applause. But the special 
train on the Galena road from Rockford, Marengo and Belvidere, 
eclipsed the whole — consisting of sixteen cars and over a thousand per- 
sons. They also marched to the Brewster House with a national flag 
bearing the words: 

WINNEBAGO COUNTY 

FOR 

''OLD ABE" 

Mr. Lincoln was again called out and received with loud cheers. 

Douglas arrived in the town on Thursday evening and was escorted 
from the depot by what purported to be a torchlight procession. It 
was held to be a torchlight procession by a number of Dred Scottites 
who were in the secret, but with the mass of the community it passed 
for a small pattern, candle-box mob of Irishmen and street urchins. 
"Plenty of torches, gentlemenl" cried the chief lictor, — "plenty of 
torches; won't cost you a cent." "Don't be afraid of e'm. " He 
succeeded in " passing " about seventy-five of them. The rest will be 
good for the next time. 



ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

At two o'clock the people rushed to the grove, a couple of squares in 
the rear of the Brewster House. The crowd was about one-third 
larger than that at Ottawa. It formed a vast circle around a pyramid 
of lumber in the center, which had been erected for the speakers and 
reporters. 

In the essence of billingsgate Douglas transcended his Ottawa 
performance. He threw mud in great handfuls. So disgusting was 
his language that the people on the ground peremptorily hushed him 
up, three times. After a copious volley of phrases from the cock-pit, 
he bellowed out "You Black Republicans" to his audience, who 
stopped him right in his tracks, and ordered him to say '' white, " or 
to leave ofiF the adjective entirely. Twice did he essay to go on, and 
twice did the people bring him to, and make him take a fresh start. 
"Good for old Stephenson! 

[Evening Post, New York, September 2, 1858] 

THE SENATORIAL CONTEST IN ILLINOIS 

[From our Special Correspondent] 

• 

Freeport, III., Friday, August 27, 1858 
To-day was set apart as the occasion of the second discussion be- 
tween Lincoln and Douglas, and Freeport has the distinguished honor. 
It is a day fruitful in debate, and abundantly refreshing to hotel and 
saloon keepers, who stand aghast at the multitudes to be fed. There 
is an immense throng here, larger than that at Ottawa, and larger, it is 
admitted, than that at the great Fremont demonstration here, two 
years ago. By the Illinois Central and the Chicago and Galena 
railroads, by boats on the Pecatonic, and by divers vehicles, the 
masses have come. The Rockford train brought eighteen cars filled. 
The Dixon train brought twelve, and others in proportion. All 
prairiedom has broken loose. Banners waive unyielding devotion to 
*' Old Abe Lincoln, " and unfettering faith in " Douglas and Popular 
Sovereignty. " Cotton mottoes proclaim a similar creed, and small 
flags upon the horses announce a like truth. The town, which has a 
population of 7,000 has an outside delegation of many more, and the 
streets are fairly black with people. It would be uncomfortable, if it 
were hot and sunny; but the weather is cool and cloudy. 

Mr. Douglas arrived last night, and was greeted with a turn-out of 
torches, a salvo of artillery, and a stunning illumination of the hotel. 



THE FREEPORT DEBATE 193 

Mr. Lincoln came in this morning by the Dixon train, and was received 
at the depot by a host of staunch friends, who roared themselves 
hoarse on his appearance. The forenoon was occupied with the 
receptions and levees of the distinguished orators, and by a free inter- 
change of political views and speculations among the masses, that 
blocked up every avenue of approach to anywhere. 

After dinner the crowd hurried to a grove near the hotel, where the 
speakers' stand and the seats for listeners has been arranged. Here 
also were confusion and disorder. They have a wretched way in 
Illinois of leaving the platform unguarded and exposed to the forcible 
entry of the mob, who seize upon it an hour or so before the notabil- 
ities arrive, and turn a deaf ear to all urgent appeals to evacuation. 
Hence orators, committee of reception, invited guests, and last, but 
not least, the newspaper gentry, have to fight a hand-to-hand conflict 
for even the meagerest chance for standing room. This consumes 
half an hour or so, during which the crowd, taking their cue from 
those of high places, improvise a few scuffles for position among 
themselves. 

Yours truly, 

Bayou 

[Missouri Republican, St. Louis, August 31, 1858] 

THE CAMPAIGN IN ILLINOIS 



The Joint Discussion at Freeport.— Reception of Senator Douglas.— 

Torch-Iig-lit Procession.— The Excitement Commencing'. 

— The Lincoln Reception.— Hig"h Times 

Freeport, Stephenson Co., III., August 27, 1858 
The excitement which I had thought had run to its extremest inten- 
sity in this State, as connected with the canvass, is largely on the 
increase. In so far I was mistaken, for crowds which were heretofore 
great'are now greater. If this displeases our friends of the Republi- 
can party, they can feel that it is to a great extent their own fault, 
whereat good Democrats may laugh, for the falsehoods and false 
reports which of late they have sent floating thick through the air, 
until there is a very murkiness of disorder around the districts infested 
by their evil cogitations, are commencing like curses and chickens to 
come home to roost. These lying reports have been devised by the 
Republican committee, which meets every evening at the office of the 



194 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Press and Tribune for the puipose of squaring up the reports sent in 
by Lincoln's hired reporters, and to see that they tell the tale of his 
progress as Republican leaders can best afford to let the readers of 
their circulating mediums peruse them. I speak on no hypothesis, 
for it is beyond denial that the committee does so meet on nearly 
every evening, and that the Black Republican gubernatorial aspirant 
for 1860, Mr. Judd, is constantly running in to see that all goes on 
according to gunter. 

Judge Douglas arrived at this place, the second on his second list 
of appointments, last evening, when he was made to be the recipient of 
honors which would well become the crowned head of a monarch. 
Napoleon or Victoria, passing to Cherbourg, through towns of equal 
size with this, followed by the proud pageantry of modem monarchical 
show, never fell in with such enthusiastic greeting, such cordial wel- 
come of vociferous applause as fell to his share when he stepped from 
the railroad car into this, which is claimed to be a Black Republican 
town. There was no Mayor in scarlet robes, supported by potbel- 
lied Aldermen to deliver him keys of gold, no cringing and fawning 
employees, no standing multitudes gaping upon hereditary greatness, 
but there was a shout — oh, such a shout — as in times of yore they 
were wont to describe as making the '' welkin ring. " There were not 
multitudes of people obeying the behests of titled lords, or following 
the command of some flattering courtier, but there were thousands 
of men whose sovereignty is in their own hands, and whose votes are 
the tokens of their unbought and unpurchasable rights. 

But a new feature has here been introduced into the reception. By 
the side of every main street there are flaming torches, each with a 
living bearer; a field piece is yielding from its unswelling and untiring 
throat the echo of those glorious shouts, banners are waving, and the 
gloom of the evening is dissipated by the flooding of light, and con- 
cealed by those waving colors, which, as the breeze sweeps by, stir and 
rustle in like tones of jubilee. 

Such a shout and such an echo as that I have spoken of, could not 
but find the Senator at his feet, when he would have bowed his 
acknowledgment, had it not been that these people, in their glee, 
captured him, to make him first see how they welcomed the favorite 
son of Illinois. They took him to the carriage which was in waiting 
hard by to the line of procession, which they formed. First was the 
band, discoursing sweet sounds; then the committee of arrangements, 



THE FREEPORT DEBATE 195 

with Mr. Douglas; then came the hosts of citizens who tendered the 
honor. On the left hand and on the right, in regular order, marched 
but a few paces apart, perhaps a thousand men, each carrying a 
lighted torch. As the procession passed through these lines of torches, 
they closed in and became part of the parading mass. 

Thus escorted the Senator was taken to the Brewster House, a 
large and very fine hotel opened within the last few months. Here 
Mr. Mitchell a prominent Democrat of this place, and a man of large 
influence, having been delegated thereto, made him a reception speech. 

But let me hurry. There has been another reception. Lincoln 
arrived in town this morning and his political friends raking the earth 
all around have paraded their strength, having at that the benefit of 
all the delegations, Democrat and Abolition, that came in. Their 
cannon did as good service as did that for Douglas, it was likely the 
same piece, but they could not come the torches, nor could they make 
the cheers which the Black Republicans so much covet, rise above the 
yell of a defeated pack of " living dogs. " The only flag they had 
among them had lost its color — it looked as though it had been of a 
variety trailed in the dust, as without doubt it was, when at Ottawa 
Lincoln on last Saturday stood and shivered at the side of Douglas as 
he exposed his nigger-loving propensities. 

Well, these folks, numbering perchance a thousand men, got them- 
selves into order, they walked in procession up the main street, where, 
of course, they were followed by the Democrats who had been com- 
pelled to come on the same cars. They took Lincoln to the Brewster 
House and then adjourned to meet the Rockford people and such 
others as should come by the cars from that region. These made 
quite a procession, they having filled some eleven cars; of course they 
all marched up to the house together and Lincoln was " toted " out to 
the balcony, when lo! these folks sent up a shout for Douglas, which 
showed how the wind blew in that quarter at any rate. 

As I write it is estimated that there are upward of ten thousand 
people in town, but of this I shall be able better to inform you in my 
next. 

B. B. 



196 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

[Freeport, III, Journal, September 2, 1858] 

THE DISCUSSION BETWEEN LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 



At Freeport, August 27th, 1858.— A Tremendous Crowd Present.— 
Doug-las Abuses the Republicans!— Gets Paid off in His Own Coin! 
And Gets Mad about It!— Lincoln Too Much for Him!! 

On Friday last this city witnessed one of the largest outpourings of 
the masses ever known in Northern Illinois. They commenced com- 
ing the day before, upon the regular trains, and from that time until 
noon of Friday, by regular trains and extra trains from every direction 
and by teams from this and adjoining counties, the tide kept flowing 
in. Some of the trains came in with 18 passenger cars completely 
jammed full. The crowd in attendance is variously estimated. It 
could not have been less than 10,000, and it probably did not exceed 
20,000 people. 

Mr. Douglas reached the city on Thursday evening and was met 
at the depot by his friends, and made a brief reception speech at the 
Brewster House. 

On Friday morning at 10 o'clock Lincoln arrived on an extra train 
from the South, and was welcomed at the depot by an immense 
assemblage of Republicans. He was saluted by the firing of cannons 
and escorted by a large procession headed by a Band of music, with 
banners, to the Brewster House, where a speech of welcome was made 
by Hon. T. J. Turner, to which Mr. Lincoln briefly responded in a 
happy style. All away along the route of the procession he was 
received with the most unbounded enthusiasm, cheer after cheer for 
the man of the people, the Champion of Free Labor, rending the air. 
It was plainly evident that a very large majority of the multitude 
present, had no sympathy with the party that endorsed Dred Scott, 
or with their unprincipled leader. Jo Daviess, CarroU, Winnebago 
and Ogle Counties were all represented by enthusiastic Republicans, 
bearing banners with appropriate inscriptions, and evincing an enthu- 
siasm and zeal which betokens auspicious results. But we have not 
room for the particulars we should be glad to give. Want of space 
compels us to omit much that might be said. 

At a little before two o'clock the speakers were escorted to the 
speaking stand — Arrangements had been made by the Douglasites to 
escort their champion over in a splendid carriage, drawn by white 



THE FREEPORT DEBATE 197 

horses. The Republicans chose a more appropriate conveyance for 
" Old Abe, " he being a man of the people and not an aristocrat, and 
chartered a regular old-fashioned Pennsylvania wagon, to which were 
attached six horses, all with the old "strap" harness, and the driver 
riding one of the wheel horses. Abe was seated in the wagon, together 
with about a dozen good, solid, old-fashioned farmers, the ''bone and 
sinew " of the land, and they were greeted with hearty rounds of cheers 
as they passed along. The Douglasites concluded that the "white 
horse " arrangement wouldn't be popular after such a truly democratic 
display, and backed out of it. At two o'clock the speaking com- 
menced, Mr. Lincoln being introduced by Hon. T. J. Turner, Moder- 
ator on the part of the Republicans, Mr. Lincoln spoke for one hour. 
Douglas' Manners — During the whole of Mr. Lincoln's opening 
speech at the discussion on Friday last, Mr. Douglas sat near him 
smoking a cigar, and puffing out its fumes for the benefit of the 
Speaker and the Ladies who were so unfortunate as to be in the 
immediate vicinity of this " Shortboy Senator. " Take this in con- 
nection with the ridiculous exhibition he made of himself when in his 
"mad" fit, and what a specimen does he afford of an American 
Statesman ! A libel upon the race of heroes 

[Daily Missouri Democrat, St. Louis, September 3, 1858] 

PROGRESS OF THE ILLINOIS CAMPAIGN 



Second Meeting- of the Rival Senatorial Candidates.— Debate between 

Lincoln and Doug-las at Freeport.— Fifteen Thousand 

Persons Present 

Notwithstanding the combined drawbacks of wind and rain, the 
second debate between Messrs. Lincoln and Douglas, which took 
place at Freeport, Illinois on Friday last, attracted even a larger 
crowd than that which greeted the contestants at Ottawa, on the 
Saturday preceding. About 15,000 persons were present, a gain of 
one-third on the former attendance. 

At their first meeting the advantage of opening and closing the dis- 
cussion was enjoyed by Douglas, while at the second, Lincoln in turn 
had the first and last word. 

In a repeated consideration of the same topics, there must of neces- 
sity be in general, a rehearsal of the same arguments, although circum- 



198 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

stances will exert more or less influence in reproducing them in new 
lights and connections. 

In some respects the debate at Freeport was more interesting than 
that at Ottawa. Having once measured their own strength, and felt 
the full weight of their antagonist's attacks, the combatants were 
respectively more at ease, and were prepared to enforce their strong 
points with greater zeal, to correct their mistakes, supply their 
deficiencies, and bring to bear new aids upon what had been too 
lightly touched on. 

[Chicago Journal, August 28, 1858] 

THE LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS DEBATE AT FREEPORT 



From 15,000 to 20,000 People Present.— Lincoln Answers and Asks 
Some Questions.— Doug-las Gets into a Passion 

There was an immense assemblage of the people of Northern Illinois 
at Freeport yesterday. They came down from above, and came up 
from below, in scores and hundreds. All the regular railroad trains 
and one or two special excursions trains, both on Thursday afternoon 
and on Friday morning, brought in great crowds, and hundreds of 
others came in with teams from all directions. 

Senator Douglas reached Freeport the evening previous, and was 
honored with the show of a public reception by his friends, and made 
a short address from the Brewster House balcony. 

Mr. Lincoln arrived by the Illinois Central train at about 9 o'clock 
Friday morning and was saluted by the cannon and received by a 
large procession of Republicans, on whose behalf Hon. T. J. Turner of 
Freeport, made the speech of welcome. He was conducted to the 
Brewster House, where he made a most happy speech of acknowledg- 
ment. From the moment he came out of the cars till he entered his 
room in the hotel, the streets were made perfectly clamorous with 
shouts and hurrahs for Lincoln. He tried in vain to enjoy a few 
hours of retirement at the hotel; the multitude insisted upon his 
''showing himself" again on the balcony, and of greeting him with 
hearty shakes of his right hand. The people, on this occasion, were 
Lincoln men — there being four Republicans present to every Doug- 
lasite. Northern Illinois is "all right," and no mistake. 

At two o'clock, the mass of people had surrounded the platform that 
had been erected in a large vacant lot in the rear of the Brewster 



THE FREEPORT DEBATE 199 

House, and the debate commenced, Mr. Lincoln opening in a speech 
of an hour; Douglas following in a reply of an hour and a half; and 
Mr. Lincoln concluding in a half hour speech. 

[Illinois State Register, September 1, 1858] 

THE FEEEPOET DEBATE.- SECOND EOUT OF LINCOLN 

We give today, from the report of the Chicago Times, the first half 
of the second debate between Messrs. Lincoln and Douglas, at Free- 
port. We shall complete it to-morrow. We regret that our space 
prevents our giving the whole in a single issue of our daily. In this 
bout Mr. Lincoln led off, and, consequently, had the conclusion. Mr. 
L., did not recover any of the ground lost at Ottawa. He was only 
involved deeper in the intricate mazes of his inconsistency. He seems 
to have learned a " Yankee trick " during his northern tour — of ask- 
ing questions in response to those put to him. In this he was foiled. 
Douglas promptly replied, while Lincoln again shuffled and quibbled 
upon the leading points of the black republican creed. We have 
given the Ottawa debate in full, and shall give the Freeport. In 
these our readers can judge for themselves as to the merits of the 
debates, which afford their own comment. With such a succession 
of disasters, it is no wonder that the sachems of his party sit here in 
secret conclave three or four days debating as to what had better be 
done with their candidate, and the best means of getting him from 
before the public, who are daily witnessing his discomfiture and the 
withering contrast between himself and Douglas. 

We invite the special attention of our readers to Lincoln's speech, 
and Douglas' reply. We suggest to them to lay away the paper for 
future reference. The Journal will, probably, keep this debate from 
its readers, as it did the Ottawa debate. The editors prefer giving 
their lying versions of the contest between the two men to the verba- 
tim report of their debates. Keep the debate by you, to refute the 
lies and misrepresentations in regard to it which the lying organs of 
Lincoln will put forth. 

[Illinois State Journal, August 30, 1858] 

THE GEEAT DEBATE AT FEEEPOET 

BETWEEN LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 

Carroll County mustered several thousand strong. Jo Daviess 
sent over nine carloads including the Lincoln Club of Galena. Large 



200 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

delegations came in from Rockford and other points, and all with 
their banners and bands of music. 

Douglas arrived the night before the discussion but met with a poor 
reception. Lincoln came in on the morning train from Amboy at 10 
o'clock. Full five thousand strong received him at the depot, and es- 
corted him to the hotel where he made a short speech which set the 
crowd in a blaze of enthusiasm. He was several times afterwards 
called out by the various delegations, who as they arrived, paraded in 
quest of his quarters to pay their respects to him. 

At two o'clock p. M., he was wheeled to the place appointed for the 
speaking in a cannestoga, wagon, drawn by six white horses. A tre- 
mendous hurrah went up as the crowd joined in the procession and 
march, the music playing and the flags and banners waving in all 
directions. Douglas was to have been driven out in his splendid six- 
horse coach, but when he saw Lincoln's equipments he backed out of 
the arrangement. 

[New York Daily Tribune, September 9, 1858] 

FEOM CHICAGO 



Doug-las and Lincoln.— Blunders Corrected 

[Correspondence of the A'^. Y. Tribune] 

Chicago, Sept. 1, 1858 
Douglas and Lincoln have had two encounters before the people. 
The first was at Ottawa, in La Salle County, where the strong point of 
the Judge's speech was a forgery, set off and illustrated by the most 
virulent abuse of his opponents. Trumbull in particular came in for 
a large share of these compliments, which the Judge dispenses with a 
grace all his own. "Liar," ''sneak," ''coward," these are some of 
the Douglassian flowers of rhetoric. 

He is rather more cautious how he talks about Lincoln, "Long 
Abe" being a man of Kentucky raising, and one who might fight — 
and " Little Dug " is well known to be a bully who only insults peace- 
able men. He could talk in the Senate about kicking Charles Sum- 
ner; but J. J. Crittenden shut him up very quickly when he tried to 
play off his arrogance upon the old Kentuckian. 

The second meeting was at Freeport, Stephenson County, and the 
largest part of the audience being Repubhcans, Douglas adopted the 



THE FREEPORT DEBATE 201 

same tactics which he used at Chicago some years ago. He deliber- 
ately insulted the audience, in order to provoke them to interrupt 
him, so that he might make capital for himself by the cry of perse- 
cution and unfairness. On both occasions Lincoln made the best 
impression. He is an earnest, fluent speaker, with a very good com- 
mand of language, and he ran the Judge so hard that the latter quite 
lost his temper. 

Douglas is no beauty, but he certainly has the advantage of Lincoln 
in looks. Very tall and awkward, with a face of grotesque ugliness, he 
presents the strongest possible contrast to the thick set, burly bust and 
short legs of the Judge. They tell this story of Lincoln in Southern 
Illinois, where he resides: 

Being out in the woods hunting, he fell in with a most truculent 
looking hunter, who immediately took a sight on him with his rifle. 

"Halloo!" says Lincoln. "What are you going to do, stranger!" 

"See here, friend; the folks in my settlement told me if ever I saw 
a man uglier than I was, then I must shoot him; and I've found him at 
last. " 

"Well," said Lincoln, after a good look at the man, "shoot away; 
for if I am really uglier than you are, I don't want to live any longer! " 

But you wiU see him in Washington, and then you can form 
your own opinion as to his looks. We mean to send him there. 

Sauganash 
[Evening Post, New York, September 7, 1858] 

THE SENATORIAL CANVASS OF ILLINOIS 

[From our Special Correspondent.] 

Chicago, III., September 2, 1858 

On the other hand, it was very evident that Mr. Douglas was " cor- 
nered " by the questions put to him by Mr. Lincoln. He claimed to be 
the upholder of the Dred Scott decision, and also of popular sover- 
eignty. He was asked to reconcile the two. He said that the people 
of a territory had the right to exclude slavery before the territory 
comes in as a state, and that whatever the Supreme Court might 
decide, it made no difference, for the people of a territory need not pass 
the needful local laws and police regulations to protect and enforce the 
right to slaves. This is opposed to the language of the Supreme Court, 
"that no tribunal, whether legislative, executive or judicial, has a 



202 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

right to deny to it (slavery) the benefit of the provisions and guaran- 
ties which have been provided for private property against the en- 
croachments of the government;" while Mr. Buchanan, in his New 
Haven letter, says that " slavery exists in Kansas under the constitu- 
tion of the United States," a point "settled by the highest tribunal 
known to our laws. " 

Senator Douglas, in his speech, came directly in collision with the 
Dred Scott decision, with Mr. Buchanan, and with the settlement of 
democrats "pure and undefiled," who walk in Administration paths 
and are warmed by a southern sun. 

The next joint discussion between Lincoln and Douglas is at Jones- 
boro, (Egypt), near Cairo, on the 15th. It is at this place that Mr. 
Douglas said he would "trot Lincoln out." In that hitherto 
thoroughly democratic district Mr. Douglas thinks that Mr. Lincoln 
dares not avow his sentiments. There he can prove, to his own 
content and to the entire satisfaction of his hearers, that Lincoln is 
an " amalgamationist. " There, too — and the knife has a double 
edge — he must be wary how he calls a Supreme Court decision an 
"abstraction," and how he prates of popular sovereignty as taught 
by him in 1854, and before the latter discoveries and improvements 
in democratic science. Away down there, "on Egypt's dark sea," 
there floats but occasionally a Republican bark; but Lincoln will nail 
his colors to the mast, and proclaim his Freeport doctrines as earnestly 
and as freely as if he stood surrounded by the constituents of Wash- 
burne or Lovejoy. 

Yours, &c., 

Bayou 

[Chicago Times, October 1, 1858] 

BLACK REPUBLICAN OUTRAGES 

The Black Republicans evidently intend to be consistent in one 
thing — and for that one thing, unfortunately, they have fixed on 
ruffianism.— Until the joint discussion at Freeport, when Lincoln was 
proven to be no match of Douglas, the contest was free from any overt 
insults; but the mortification of the Black Republicans was then so 
overwhelming that it only found relief in violence towards the man 
who occasioned it. — It will be remembered that after Lincoln had 
been listened to attentively, and when Douglas went upon the stand, 



THE FREEPORT DEBATE 203 

some villian threw at the latter a melon, hitting him on one shoulder. 

Nor was that the only indecent act perpetrated by the enemies of the 

Democracy at that place; but the Democratic speakers, preferring 

to deal in argumentation rather than with bludgeons, suffered the 

affronts to pass unredressed. From that day to this the ruffianism of 

the Black Republicans has steadily increased, and has been applied 

on all occasions 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, September 1, 1858] 

fi@°" Speaking of Judge Douglas' reception at Freeport on Thursday 

night, one of his hired puffers, writing an account to the Times says: 

A grand salute was fired at the same time, which, as it resounded through 
the city, gave notice to the people that the champion of popular right had 
arrived, and thousands of people flocked from the hotels and from all parts 
of the city, swelling the assemblage to not less than five thousand persons. 
A procession was formed, and, with not less than a thousand torches, music, 
the cheers of the people, and the thunders of the cannon. Judge Douglas was 
•escorted to the Brewster House. 

We happened to stand on the balcony of the Brewster House all the 
time embraced in the above fancy picture, and the naked truth is this : 

1st. The gun squad fired off their piece some half a dozen times, 
"because they were paid for so doing, to give notice that the champion 
of Dred Scottism had come to town. 

2d. The greatest number of persons did not exceed eight hundred 
to one thousand at any one time that night. 

3d. The "procession," counting loafers and boys, did not number 
two hundred and fifty persons, and of that number, by actual count, 
only seventy-four carried torches. 

[Chicago Sunday Tribune, May 9, 1895] 

A EEMINISCENCE OF LINCOLN 

By Joseph Medill 



Lincoln's Cunning: Questions Put to Douglas at the Freeport Debate 
I traveled around with Mr. Lincoln after the Ottawa discussion to 
Freeport. He addressed three or four meetings during that time, one 
of them at Galesburg, where he had an immense audience; another at 
Macomb in McDonough county, where the crowd was comparatively 
small. As I recollect it we proceeded directly from Macomb to Free- 
port on the morning of Aug. 27. On the way north on the cars Mr. 
Lincoln beckoned to me to take a seat beside him — I was sitting a few 
seats behind him at the time — which I did. He took a half sheet of 



204 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

writing paper out of his pocket and handing it to me said: "I am 
going to answer Mr. Douglas' questions today in our discussion which 
he put to me at Ottawa and I intend to ask him a few questions in 
return, and I jotted them down this morning at the hotel before I left 
there. I wish you to read them over and tell me what you think of 
my questions. " I did so, reading one of them several times. After 
a considerable pause he said: "Well, how do those interrogatories 
strike you?" I replied: "Mr. Lincoln, I do not like the second 
question." "What's the objection to it?" Mr. Lincoln asked. I 
replied : " It opens the door through which Senator Douglas will be 
enabled to escape from the tight place in which he finds himself on the 
slavery question in this State since he succeeded in getting the 
Missouri compromise repealed (which excluded slavery from the 
territories north of 36° 30', and that included, of course, Kansas 
and Nebraska). " 

We argued at some further length, but I could make no impression 
whatever on Mr. Lincoln's mind. He said that he wouldn't change 
the form of the question, and that he intended " to spear it at Douglas 
that afternoon. " In due time we arrived at Freeport and there was a 
great crowd of Lincoln's friends at the depot with a carriage to take 
him up to his hotel. The town was swarming with people, great 
numbers coming from all the adjoining counties. I found at the hotel 
the Republican member of Congress from that district, E. B. Wash- 
burne, with whom I was intimately acquainted, and Norman B. Judd, 
of Chicago, who was chairman of the Republican State Central 
Committee. 

I took each of them aside and related what passed between Lincoln 
and myself on the cars, and repeated the language of the second 
question which he intended to propound to Douglas, and both of them 
said that they feared the ill effects from it, and they would try and per- 
suade Lincoln to leave it out or modify its language. They followed 
Mr. Lincoln up stairs into his apartments, where he was making his 
toilet for dinner, as the road had been dusty on the way up, and they 
spent a considerable time with him. When they came down stairs I 
saw both of them again, and they informed me that they had argued 
the impolicy of putting question two to Douglas as strongly as they 
could, but were not able to change his purpose. Other leaders saw 
Mr. Lincoln before the debate began and urged him not to give 
Douglas such an opportunity to get out of the tight place it was 
believed he was in before the people of Illinois on the slavery question. 



THE FREEPORT DEBATE 205 

Mr. Lincoln opened the discussion in the afternoon, and first replied 
to Douglas' seven questions put to him at Ottawa, and then said: 

" I now proceed to propound to the Judge interrogatories so far as I 
have framed them. I will bring forward today an installment, only to 
number four, and reserv^e the other questions to our next debate. " 

And thereupon he read his four questions, including the No. 2, to 
which I have referred. He went on and finished his speech, and Mr. 
Douglas arose in reply and proceeded to answer the four questions. 
When he came to No. 2 he realized in his reply my worst fears. He 
said in substance: 

" It matters not what way the Supreme Court may hereafter decide 
as to the abstract questions whether slavery may or may not go into a 
Territory under the constitution; a majority of the people thereof have 
the lawful means to introduce or exclude it as they please, for the 
reason that slavery cannot exist a day or an hour anywhere unless it is 
supported by local police regulations. These police regulations can 
only be established by the local Legislature and if the majority of the 
people of the Territory' are opposed to Slavery they will elect repre- 
sentatives to that bodv who will bv unfriendlv legislation, effectuallv 
prevent the introduction of it into their midst. If, on the contrars', 
they are for Slavery, their Legislature will favor its admission and 
extension. Hence, no matter what the decision of the Supreme 
Court may be on that abstract question, still the right of the people to 
make a slave Territory or Free Territory' is perfect and complete under 
the Nebraska bill. I hope Mr. Lincoln deems my answer satisfactory 
on that point. " 

That was Senator Douglas' reply to Mr. Lincoln's sharp question, 
and it so pleased the thousands of Democrats present that they 
cheered and shouted and kept it up so long it was with difficulty the 
chairman of the meeting, aided by Mr. Douglas himself, could induce 
them to stop applauding in order that he might proceed with his 
speech, while Republicans maintained an absolute silence. 

The Democratic papers all over Northern Illinois quoted and ap- 
plauded Douglas' triumphant reply to Mr. Lincoln's interrogatory. 

Two or three days after the election of 1860, learning that the active 
workers of the Republican party in the State were calling on Mr. 
Lincoln in Springfield from all Illinois to congratulate him on his 
triumphant election to the Presidency, I concluded to make the same 
pilgrimage and went down to the Alton cars with a number of other 



206 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Chicagoans reaching there in the morning. After breakfast I walked 
up to the old State House in the public square of the city, where Mr. 
Lincoln was holding his levee in the office of the Secretary of State. 
He bent his head down to my ear and said in low tones, something 
like this : " Do you recollect the argument we had on the way up to 
Freeport two years ago over my question that I was going to ask 
Judge Douglas about the power of squatters to exclude slavery from 
territories?" And I replied — that I recollected it very well. "Now," 
said he, " don't you think I was right in putting that question to him?" 
I said : " Yes Mr. Lincoln, you were, and we were both right. Doug- 
las' reply to that question undoubtedly hurt him badly for the 
Presidency but it re-elected him to the Senate at that time as I 
feared it would. " 

Lincoln then gave me a broad smile and said — " Now I have won the 
place that he was playing for. " We both laughed and the matter was 
never again referred to. 

REMINSCENCES OF THE FREEPORT DEBATE 

Ingalls Carleton, of 1414 East State Street, Freeport, 
111., who is one of the few survivors of the multitude 
who heard the historic Lincoln-Douglas debate in 
Freeport in 1858, has a distinct recollection of it. 

The people from this county who heard the debate went from 
Rockford on the Galena & Chicago Union railroad on a special train 
which ran from Chicago to Freeport. We got there in the afternoon 
a while before the hour for speaking. From the railroad depot the 
train crowd marched to the Brewster Hotel, or rather struggled to it, 
in pretty fast time, for we all wanted to see Lincoln and Douglas as 
soon as we could. The street in front of the hotel was full of people, 
shouting for both of the men, and we joined in the shouting. 

Presently Lincoln and Douglas came out on the balcony of the hotel. 
They stepped out arm in arm and the crowd cheered and cheered. 
Neither Lincoln or Douglas attempted to say anything. They just 
stood there for a minute and bowed again and again to the crowd and 
every time they bowed a bigger shout went up. I must say that 
Douglas made the most graceful bow. It seemed to be natural for 
him to bow. Lincoln bowed awkwardly and appeared to be more 
awkward in comparison with the gracefulness and ease of Douglas. 



THE FREEPORT DEBATE 207 

Douglas accepted the plaudits of the people as one who felt that they 
belonged to him or at least that was the way it seemed. 

It was a remarkable contrast that these two men furnished as they 
stood there, not only in physique but in manner and in attire. Lincoln 
was tall and ungainly with a lean face, homely and sorrowful looking, 
while Douglas was short and fat, easy in manner and his full face 
appeared to be that of a man whose life had been one of success and 
sunshine. Douglas was dressed in what might have been called 
plantation style. He was richly dressed. He wore a ruffled shirt 
much in style in wealthy and aristocratic circles those days, a dark 
blue coat buttoned close with shiny buttons, light trousers and shiny 
shoes, with a wide brimmed soft hat like the prosperous politicians of 
the southern part of Illinois wear to this day. He made a picture 
fitted for the stage. Lincoln wore that old high stovepipe hat with 
a coarse looking coat with sleeves far too short, and baggy looking 
trousers that were so short that they showed his rough boots. The 
Douglas men laughed at him and said he would be a nice looking 
object to put into the senate and to tell the truth the Lincoln men 
couldn't brag much on their man for exhibition purposes. 

When it came to the debate, however, the Lincoln men had the 
laugh on the Douglas men. Of course each crowd thought his man 
did the best, but it was a fact that the whole crowd felt that Lincoln 
had Douglas on the hip and that the latter was doing his best under the 
circumstances. The debate took place not far from the Brewster 
House and I believe I could walk right to the spot now. The platform 
wasn't much of an affair. It was three or four feet high and there was 
just about room on it for the debaters and the reporters. Bob Hitt 
was one of them. He didn't look much like he does now. He looked 
like a boy then, which he was, and he was slimly built. The crowd 
was a big one, but I saw a larger crowd than that in the campaign of 
1840. You see no one recognized the importance of that day besides 
Lincoln. 

[Hon. Clark E. Carr, of Galesburg, in an Address before the Illinois 
Bar Association, July 11, 1907.] 

It was stated, as has been said, that Mr. Lincoln drove Senator 
Douglas into a corner and forced him to make that reply as the only 
possible way to save himself from defeat and that he was thus "driven 



208 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

into a corner " and forced to make that reply by Mr. Lincoln for the 
purpose of defeating him for the Presidency. 

On the sixteenth day of July, six weeks before this Freeport debate, 
Senator Douglas spoke at Bloomington and the speech was published 
and spread broadcast. Mr. Lincoln was present, sat upon the plat- 
form, and heard every word. It was the senator's own meeting and 
there was no one to reply, no one to ask him a question, no one to drive 
him into a corner, or to force him to make a statement in order to save 
himself from defeat. In that speech, before thousands of people, 
including Mr. Lincoln, Senator Douglas said: 

"Slavery will never exist one day, or one hour in any territory 
against the unfriendly legislation of an unfriendly people. I care not 
how the Dred Scott discussion may have settled the abstract question, 
so far as the practical result is concerned, for to use the language of an 
eminent southern senator on this question: 

" ' I do not care a fig which way the decision shall be, for it is of no 
particular consequence; slavery cannot exist a day, nor an hour, in 
any territory or state, unless it has affirmative laws sustaining and 
supporting it, furnishing police remedies and regulations and an 
omission to furnish them would be as fatal as a constitutional pro- 
hibition. Without affirmative legislation in its favor, slavery could 
not exist any longer than a new-born infant could survive under the 
heat of the sun on a barren rock without protection. ' " 

After making this quotation from " an eminent southern senator,' ' 
Douglas proceeded. " Hence, if the people of a territory want slavery 
they will encourage it, by passing affirmative laws, and the necessary, 
police regulations, patrol laws, and slave code; if they do not want it, 
they will withhold that legislation and by withholding it slavery is as 
dead as if it was prohibited by constitutional prohibition, especially if, 
in addition, their legislation is unfriendly as it would be if they were 
opposed to it." 

On the next day. Senator Douglas spoke at Springfield and repeated 
what he had said on this occasion at Bloomington. Mr. Lincoln was 
not present; but the speech was published in full and Mr. Lincoln, no 
doubt read it as he read everything said by the senator. 

Can anyone believe for a moment that Mr. Lincoln, after hearing 
Senator Douglas so expound this doctrine, was in doubt as to how he 
would answer that second interrogatory? Can anyone believe that he 



THE FREEPORT DEBATE 209 

though he was driving his adversary into a corner and forcing him to 
say what he did in order to save himself from defeat? Can anyone 
beheve Abraham Lincoln to have been so insincere as to have pre- 
tended, when talking with friends at Mendota, upon a railway train, 
or at Freeport, that he was in doubt as to Senator Douglas's position 
or that he could drive him into a corner? 

Senator Douglas was never driven into a corner during all his long 
career of public life. In all his debates with the greatest American 
statesman, running through a quarter of a century, he was never 
driven into a corner. His views in regard to slavery were wrong, 
radically wrong, as we Republicans then believed and as we still 
believe, but there was no concealment of them. He was always 
outspoken and it is an unwarrantable and an outrageous imputation 
against him to say that he was forced to take a position through being 
" driven into a corner. " 

[William Askey, Who was Present, States Recollection of Event.] 

I was an ardent supporter of Mr. Douglas. I was twenty-one years 
of age at that period and in attendance at the Rock River seminary 
at Mt. Morris. I came to Freeport in company with others in a hack 
with four horses attached. We were all enthusiastic and anxious to 
hear the discussion. We started early and arrived in Freeport before 
the arrival of the Illinois Central train from the south which brought 
Mr. Lincoln, and I was one of a number that awaited his arrival. Mr. 
Martin P. Sweet mounted a box car when the train came in sight and 
in a loud voice said, "Make the welkin ring when the train arrives," 
which they did with a vengeance worthy of the memorable occasion. 

Mr. Lincoln was taken from the train by his friends. He towered 
above the crowd, slightly stooping forward, the crowd following, 
cheering him as though bedlam had an outing. On his arrival at the 
Brewster House he held a reception, as did Mr. Douglas who arrived 
the preceding evening. 

Just as they were about ready to start to the place of speaking with 
Mr. Lincoln, who was in a high old English wagon box, the kind used 
by the Pennsylvania Dutch farmers to haul flour and merchandise in 
early days, before the time of railroads — as I was taking it in on the 
opposite side of the street from the Brewster House, I was accosted by 
Colonel George Walker of Dakota, 111., also a Douglas man, who asked 
me whether I had been introduced to Mr. Douglas. I said no, I had 



210 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

not. "Come with me " said he and " I will see that you get an intro- 
duction. " 

I went and being ushered into Mr. Douglas' reception room saw Mr. 
Douglas in company with Colonel Mitchell and others getting ready to 
start for the place of speaking. I believe that I was the last person 
that Mr. Douglas took by the hand before making his memorable trip 
to the stand. Someone (I think Colonel Mitchell) told him how they 
were taking Mr. Lincoln. 

It had been previously arranged to take Mr. Douglas in a carriage, 
but when he was told how they were taking Mr. Lincoln he turned to 
Colonel Mitchell and said, "We will walk," and we started for the 
place of speaking around the comer of the Brewster House on 
Mechanic street. Mr. Douglas and Colonel Mitchell walked side by 
side and others, including Colonel Walker and myself, followed closely. 
As near as I can remember we walked two blocks and crossed the 
street diagonally to near or on the spot where the bowlder is placed. 
There was a platform built in the shadow of two trees which were 
covered with branches to keep off the sun. My impression is that in 
speaking to the immense crowd the speakers faced toward where the 
Stephenson bridge now is. I stood close to the platform during the 
whole discussion an interested listener I can assure you. 

I have seen it stated that Mr. Douglas was stylishly, even foppishly, 
dressed. To my recollection he was simply and plainly dressed as was 
also Mr. Lincoln. They both looked to me as men on a political tour 
trying to make a favorable impression before the people. 

[Recollection of General Smith D. Atkins, of Freeport.] 

At Freeport, Mr. F. W. S. Brawley, postmaster, entertained Mr. 
Douglas and secured for him the only fine carriage for hire at that 
time in the village. It was drawn by an elegant span of well-matched 
dapple grey horses. Learning that it was the intention to convey 
the Democratic champion in this splendid equipage from Mr. Braw- 
ley's residence to the place of speaking, the Republican Committee 
sent over into Lancaster township for Uncle John Long to come to 
Freeport with his splendid team of six enormous horses and his 
Conestoga wagon in which he had recently driven from Pennsylvania. 
When the vehicle reached the Brewster House and Mr. Lincoln was 
informed of the plan, he stoutly protested, but eventually consented. 
Amidst the cheers of Republicans and Democrats alike, he climbed 



THE FREEPORT DEBATE 211 

into the wagon, followed by a dozen of his enthusiastic supporters 
from the farming contingent, and was drawn the short distance ta 
the place of speaking. The driver of the teams sat on the nigh wheel 
horse and drove the six horses with a single rein. When Douglas saw 
the evident burlesque on his fine conveyance, he refused to ride in the 
carriage and walked to the grove, accompanied by his cheering sup- 
porters. 



CHAPTER VII 

THE JOXESBORO DEBATE 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, September 15, 1858] 

THE DEBATE AT JOXESBORO 

The third debate between Lincohi and Douglas takes place today 
at Jonesboro. Douglas has boasted that when he got Lincoln down 
into EgA-pt he would ''bring him to his milk." Jonesboro is in the 
heart of Eg}-pt, and here, if ever, the little giant will exhibit himself in 
the character of milk maid. It is altogether probable that both 
himself and his milking arrangements will come out of the trial badly 
damaged. We hope to have full intelligence from the ''milk pen" on 
Friday morning. 

[Chicago Journal, September 16. 1858] 

LETTERS FROM SOETHERX ILLIN'OIS 

(Special Correspondence of the Journal) 

Just as we were going to press, we received a letter from Southern 
Illinois, a portion only of which we can publish today: 

C-^RO, Sept. 14,1S58 
. . .' . Senator Douglas with his cannon arrived here vest^rdav 
and made a speech to the assembled Cairoites. Linder, Judge Mar- 
shall and John Logan also had their say. We did not get here in time 
to hear the speeches. In the morning, Douglas and his cannon 
proceed to Jonesboro, where he meets Mr. Lincoln in debate before 
the Eg}-ptians, for the first time, tomorrow afternoon. Mr. Lincoln 
is already there, having come down on the same train which brought 
us to Cairo. He was received by a number of friends at the Depot, 
and is the guest of Mr. Dresser. 

He feels well, looks strong, and is fuU of courage, as he has every 
reason to be. A warm time is expected tomorrow, and we hear some 
whispers of a proposed attempt on the part of Missourians and Ken- 
tuckians, who are coming over to shout for Douglas, to "put down" 
Lincoln. But we cannot beUeve that the attempt will be made. Mr. 
Lincoln will not be without friends at the meeting. We find thai he 
is personally popular even here in Egypt. 

213 

—8 



214 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

THIKD JOIXT DEBATE 

JonesboTo, September 15, 1858. 



Mr. Donfflas's Speech 

Ladies and Gentlemen : I appear before you to-day in pursuance 
of a previous notice, and have made arrangements -with Mr. Lincoln to 
divide time, and discuss with him the leading political topics that now 
agitate the countr}'. 

Prior to lSo4 this country- was di^^ded into two great political 
parties known as Whig and Democratic. These parties differed from 
each other on certain questions which were then deemed to be impor- 
tant to the best interests of the Repubhc. WTiigs and Democrats 
differed about a bank, the tariff, distribution, the specie circular, and 
the sub-treasur}'. On those issues we went before the cotmtr}' and 
discussed the principles, objects, and measures of the two great 
parties. Each of the parties could proclaim its principles in Louisi- 
ana as well as in Massachusetts, in Kentucky as well as in Illinois. 
Since that period, a great revolution has taken place in the formation 
of parties, by which they now seem to be divided by a geographical 
line, a large party in the North being arrayed under the Abolition or 
RepubHcan banner, in hostility to the Southern States, Southern 
people, and Southern institutions. It becomes important for us to 
inquire how this transformation of parties has occurred, made from 
those of national principles to geographical factions. 

You remember that in 1850 — this country- was agitated from its 
center to its circumference about this slaver}' question — it became 
necessan,- for the leaders of the great Whig party and the leaders of the 
great Democratic party to postpone, for the time being, their par- 
ticular disputes, and unite first to save the Union before they should 
quarrel as to the mode in which it was to be governed. During the 
Congress of lS49-'50, Heruy- Clay was the leader of the Union men, 
supported by Cass and Webster, and the leaders of the Democracy 
and the leaders of the Whigs, in opposition to Northern Abolitionists 
or Southern Disunionists. That great contest of 1850 resulted in the 
establishment of the Compromise measures of that year, which 
measures rested on the great principle that the people of each State 
ajid each Territon,- of this Union ought to be permitted to regulate 



DOUGLAS AT JOXESBORO 215 

their own domestic institutions in their own way, subject to no other 
limitation than that which the Federal Constitution imposes. 

I now wish to ask you whether that principle was right or wrong 
which guaranteed to ever}- State and every community the right to 
form and regulate their domestic institutions to suit themselves. 
These measures were adopted, as I have previously said, by the joint 
action of the Union WTiigs, and Union Democrats in opposition to 
Northern Abolitionists and Southern Disunionists. In 1852, when 
the ^Tiig party assembled, at Baltimore, in National Convention for 
the last time, they adopted the principle of the Compromise Measures 
of 1850 as their rule of party action in the future. One month there- 
after the Democrats assembled at the same place to nominate a can- 
didate for the Presidency, and declared the same great principle as 
the rule of action by which the Democracy would be governed. The 
Presidential election of 1S52 was fought on that basis. It is true 
that the '^Miigs claimed special merit for the adoption of those meas- 
ures, because they asserted that their great Clay originated them, 
their god-Hke Webster defended them, and their Fillmore signed the 
bill making them the law of the land; but, on the other hand, the 
Democrats claimed special credit for the Democracy, upon the ground 
that we gave twice as many votes in both houses of Congress for the 
passage of these measures as the Whig party. 

Thus you see that in the Presidential election of 1852, the Whigs 
were pledged by their platform and their candidate to the principle of 
the Compromise Measures of 1S50, and the Democracy were likewise 
pledged by our principles, our platform, and our candidate to the same 
line of policy, to preser\-e peace and quiet between the different sec- 
tions of this Union. Since that period the Whig party has been 
transformed into a sectional party, under the name of the Republican 
party, whilst the Democratic party continues the same national party 
it was at that day. AU sectional men, all men of Abolition sentiments 
and principles, no matter whether they were old Abolitionists or had 
been Whigs or Democrats, rally imder the sectional Republican 
banner, and consequently all National men, all Union-lo%'ing men, 
whether Whigs, Democrats, or by whatever name they have been 
known, ought to raUy under the Stars and Stripes in defense of the 
Constitution as our fathers made it, and of the Union as it has existed 
under the Constitution. 

How has this departure from the faith of the Democracy and the 
faith of the "VMiig party been accomplished? In 1S54. certain restless. 



216 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

ambitious, and disappointed politicians throughout the land took 
advantage of the temporary excitement created by the Nebraska bill 
to try and dissolve the old Whig party, and the old Democratic party, 
to Abolitionize their members, and lead them, bound hand and foot, 
captives into the Abolition camp. In the State of New York a con- 
vention was held by some of these men, and a platform adopted, every 
plank of which was as black as night, each one relating to the negro, 
and not one referring to the interests of the white man. That example 
was followed throughout the Northern States, the effort being made 
to combine all the Free States in hostile array against the Slave 
States. The men who thus thought that they could build up a great 
sectional party, and through its organization control the political 
destinies of this country, based all their hopes on the single fact that 
the North was the stronger division of the nation, and hence, if the 
North could be combined against the South, a sure victory awaited 
their efforts. 

I am doing no more than justice to the truth of historj^ when I say 
that in this State, Abraham Lincoln, on behalf of the Whigs, and 
Lyman Trumbull, on behalf of the Democrats, were the leaders who 
undertook to perform this grand scheme of Abolitionizing the two 
parties to which they belonged. They had a private arrangement as 
to what should be the political destiny of each of the contracting 
parties before they went into the operation. The arrangement was 
that Mr. Lincoln was to take the Old Line Whigs with him, claiming 
that he was still as good a Whig as ever, over to the Abolitionists, and 
Mr. Trumbull was to run for Congress in the Belleville District, and 
claiming to be a good Democrat, coax the old Democrats into the 
Abolition camp, and when, by the joint efforts of the Abolitionized 
Whigs, the Abolitionized Democrats, and the Old Line Abolition and 
Free-soil party of this State, they should secure a majority in the 
Legislature. Lincoln was then to be made United States Senator 
in Shields's place, Trumbull remaining in Congress until I should be 
accommodating enough to die or resign, and give him a chance to 
follow Lincoln. [Laughter, applause and cries of " Don't die. "] 
That was a very nice little bargain so far as Lincoln and Trumbull 
were concerned, if it had been carried out in good faith, and friend 
Lincoln had attained to senatorial dignity according to the contract. 

They went into the contest in every part of the State, calling upon 
all disappointed politicians to join in the crusade against the Demo- 



DOUGLAS AT JONESBORO . 217 

cracy, and appealed to the prevailing sentiments and prejudices in all 
the northern counties of the State. In three Congressional Districts 
in the north end of the State they adopted, as the platform of this new 
party thus formed by Lincoln and Trumbull in^ connection with the 
Abolitionists, all of those principles which aimed at a warfare on the 
part of the North against the South. They declared in that platform 
that the Wilmot Proviso was to be applied to all the Territories of the 
United States, north as well as south of 36 deg. 30 min., and not only 
to all the territory we then had, but all that we might hereafter 
acquire; that hereafter no more Slave States should be admitted into 
this Union, even if the people of such State desired slavery; that the 
Fugitive-Slave law should be absolutely and unconditionally repealed ; 
that slavery should be abolished in the District of Columbia ; that the 
slave trade should be abolished between the different states; and, in 
fact, every article in their creed related to this slavery question, and 
pointed to a Northern geographical party in hostility to the Southern 
States of this Union. 

Such were their principles in Northern Illinois. A little farther^ 
south they became bleached, and grew paler just in proportion as 
public sentiment moderated and changed in this direction. They 
were Republicans or Abolitionists in the North, anti-Nebraska men 
down about Springfield, and in this neighborhood they contented 
themselves with talking about the inexpediency of the repeal of the 
Missouri Compromise. [Shouts of laughter.] In the extreme north- 
ern counties they brought out men to canvass the State whose com- 
plexion suited their political creed; and hence Fred Douglass, the 
negro, was to be found there, following General Cass, and attempting 
to speak on behalf of Lincoln, Trumbull, and Abolitionism, against 
that illustrious senator. [Renewed laughter.] Why, they brought 
Fred Douglass to Freeport, when I was addressing a meeting there, 
in a carriage driven by the white owner, the negro sitting inside with 
the white lady and her daughter. [" Shame. "] When I got through 
canvassing the northern counties that year, and progressed as far 
south as Springfield, I was met and opposed in discussion by Lincoln, 
Lovejoy, Trumbull and Sidney Breese, who were on one side. [Laugh- 
ter.] Father Giddings, the high-priest of Abolitionism, had just been 
there, and Chase came about the time I left. [Voice: "Why didn't 

^Inserts "the" after "In." 
aReads: "further" for "farther." 



218 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

you shoot him?"] I did take a running shot at them; but as I was 
single-handed against the white, black, and mixed drove, I had to 
use a shot-gun i and fire into the crowd, instead of taking them off 
singly with a rifle. [Great laughter and cheers.] 

Trumbull had for his lieutenants, in aiding him to Abolitionize the 
Democracy, such men as John Wentworth of Chicago, Governor Rey- 
nolds, of Belleville, Sidney Breese of Carlisle, and John Dougherty 
of Union ["Good, "Good," "Give it to them," etc.], each of whom 
modified his opinions to suit the 2- locality he was in. Dougherty, for 
instance, would not go much further than to talk about the inexpe- 
diency of the Nebraska bill, whilst his allies at Chicago advocated 
negro citizenship and negro equality, putting the white man and the 
negro on the same basis under the law. [" Never, never. "] Now, 
these men, four years ago, were engaged in a conspiracy to break 
down the Democracy; to-day they are again acting together for the 
same purpose ! They do not hoist the same flag, they do not own the 
same principles or profess the same faith, but conceal their union for 
the sake of policy. In the northern counties, you find that all the 
conventions are called in the name of the Black Republican party ; at 
Springfield they dare not call a Republican Convention, but invite 
all the enemies of the Democracy to unite; and when they get down 
into Egypt, Trumbull issues notices calling upon the "Free Democ- 
racy " to assemble and hear him speak. I have one of the handbills 
calling a Trumbull meeting at Waterloo the other day, which I re- 
ceived there, which is in the following language: — 

A meeting of the Free Democracy will take place in Waterloo, on Mon- 
day, Sept. 13th inst., whereat Hon. Lyman Trumbull, Hon. Jehu^ Baker 
and others will address the people upon the different poUtical topics of the 
day. Members of all parties are cordially invited to be present, and hear 
and determine for themselves. 

The Monroe Free Democracy. 

What is that name of "Free Democrats" put forth for, unless to 
deceive the people, and make them believe that Trumbull and his 
followers are not the same party as that which raises the black flag 
of Abolitionism in the northern part of this State, and makes war 
upon the Democratic party throughout the State? When I put that 
question to them at Waterloo on Saturday last, one of them rose and 
stated that they had changed their name for political effect, in order 

^Reads: "shortgun." 
^Inserts "particular." 
sReads: "John" for "Jehu." 



DOUGLAS AT JONESBORO 219 

to get votes. There was a candid admission. Their object in chang- 
ing their party organization and principles in different localities was 
avowed to be an attempt to cheat and deceive some portion of the 
people until after the election. Why cannot a political party that is 
conscious of the rectitude of its purposes and the soundness of its 
principles declare them everywhere alike? I would disdain to hold 
any political principles that I could not avow in the same terms in 
Kentucky that I declared in Illinois, in Charleston as well as in 
Chicago, in New Orleans as well as in New York. [Cheers.] So long 
as we live under a Constitution common to all the States, our poli- 
tical faith ought to be as broad, as liberal, and just as that Constitu- 
tion itself, and should be proclaimed alike in every portion of the 
Union. [" Hear, hear. "] 

But it is apparent that our opponents find it necessary, for partisan 
effect, to change their colors in different counties in order to catch the 
popular breeze, and hope with these discordant materials combined 
together to secure a majority in the Legislature for the purpose of put- 
ting down the Democratic party. This combination did succeed in 
1854 so far as to elect a majority of their confederates to the Legisla- 
ture ; and the first important act which they performed was to elect a 
Senator in the place of the eminent and gallant Senator Shields. His 
term expired in the United States Senate at that time, and he had to 
be crushed by the Abolition coalition for the simple reason that he 
would not join in their conspiracy to wage war against one-half of the 
Union. That was the only objection to General Shields. He had 
served the people of the State with ability in the Legislature, he had 
served you with fidelity and ability as Auditor, he had performed his 
duties to the satisfaction of the whole country at the head of the Land 
Department at Washington, he had covered the State and the Union 
with immortal glory on the bloody fields of Mexico in defense of the 
honor of our flag, and yet he had to be striken down by this unholy 
combination. And for what cause? Merely because he would not 
join a combination of one half of the States to make war upon the 
other half, after having poured out his heart's blood for all the States 
in the Union. Trumbull was put in his place by Abolitionism. 

How did Trumbull get there? Before the Abolitionists would con- 
sent to go into an election for United States Senator they required all 
the members of this new combination to show their hands upon this 
question of Abolitionism. Lovejoy, one of their high-priests, brought 



220 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

in resolutions defining the Abolition creed, and required them to com- 
mit themselves on it by their votes, — yea or nay. In that creed, as 
laid down by Lovejoy, they declared, first, that the Wilmot Proviso 
must be put on all the Territories of the United States, north as well 
as south of 36 deg. 30.,^ and that no more territory should ever be 
acquired unless slavery was at first prohibited therein; second, that 
no more States should ever be received into the Union unless slavery 
was first prohibited, by Constitutional provision, in such States; 
third, that the Fugitive-Slave law must be immediately repealed, or, 
failing in that, then such amendments were to be made to it as would 
render it useless and inefficient for the objects for which it was passed, 
etc. The next day after these resolutions were offered they were 
voted upon, part of them carried, and the others defeated, the same 
men who voted for them, with only two exceptions, voting soon 
after for Abraham Lincoln as their candidate for the United States 
Senate. He came within one or two votes of being elected, but he 
could not quite get the number required, for the simple reason that 
his friend Trumbull, who was a party to the bargain by which Lincoln 
was to take Shields's place, controlled a few Abolitionized Democrats 
in the Legislature, and would not allow them all to vote for him, thus 
wronging Lincoln by permitting him on each ballot to be almost 
elected, but not quite, until he forced them to drop Lincoln and elect 
him (Trumbull), in order to unite the party. [Immense laughter.] 
Thus you find that although the Legislature was carried that year 
by the bargain between Trumbull, Lincoln, and the Abolitionists, and 
the union of these discordant elements in one harmonious party, yet 
Trumbull violated his pledge, and played a Yankee trick on Lincoln 
when they came to divide the spoils. [Laughter and cheers. Mr. 
Lincoln greatly agitated, his face buried in his hands.] Perhaps you 
would like a little evidence on this point. If you would, I will call 
Colonel James H. Matheny, of Springfield, to the stand, Mr. Lincoln's 
especial confidential friend for the last twenty years, and see what he 
will say upon the subject of this bargain. Matheny is now the Black 
Republican, or Abolition, candidate for Congress in the Springfield 
District against the gallant Colonel Harris, and is making speeches 
all over that part of the State against me and in favor of Lincoln, in 
concert with Trumbull. He ought to be a good witness, and I will 
read an extract from a speech which he made in 1856, when he was 

1 Insert : "min." after "30." 



DOUGLAS AT JONESBORO 221 

mad because his friend Lincoln had been cheated. It is one of nu- 
merous speeches of the same tenor that were made about that time, 
exposing this bargain between Lincoln, Trumbull, and the Abolition- 
ists. Matheny then said: — 

"The Whigs, Abolitionists, Know-Nothings, and renegade Democrats 
made a solemn compact for the purpose of earring this State against the 
Democracy, on this plan: 1st. That they would all combine and elect 
Mr. Trumbull to Congress, and thereby carry his district for the Legisla- 
ture, in order to throw all the strength that could be obtained into that 
body against the Democrats. 2d. That when the Legislature should meet, 
the ofiScers of that body, such as speaker, clerks, door-keepers, etc., would 
be given to the Abolitionists; and 3d. That the Whigs were to have the 
United States Senator. That, accordingly, in good faith, Trumbull was 
elected to Congress, and his district carried for the Legislature, and, when 
it convened, the Abolitionists got all the officers of that body; and, thus 
far, the 'bond' was fairly executed. The Whigs, on their part, demanded 
the election of Abraham Lincoln to the United States Senate, that the bond 
might be fulfilled, the other parties to the contract having already secured 
to themselves all that was called for. But, in the most perfidious manner, 
they refused to elect Mr. Lincoln, and the mean, low-lived, sneaking Trum- 
bull succeeded, by pledging all that was required by any party, in thrusting 
Lincoln aside, and foisting himself, an excrescence from the rotten bowels 
of the Democracy, into the United States Senate: and thus it has ever been, 
that an honest man makes a bad bargain when he conspires or contracts 
with rogues." 

Matheny thought that his friend Lincoln made a bad bargain when 
he conspired and contracted with such rogues as Trumbull and his 
Abolition associates in that campaign. [Great cheers and laughter; 
Lincoln looking very miserable.] Lincoln was shoved off the track, 
and he and his friends all at once began to mope, became sour and 
mad, [laughter] and disposed to tell, but dare not; [shouts of laughter] 
and thus they stood for a long time, until the Abolitionists coaxed and 
flattered him back by their assurances that he should certainly be a 
senator in Douglas's place. [Roars of laughter, Lincoln looking as if 
he had not a friend on earth, although Herr Kriesman whispered, 
'' Never mind " into his ear.] In that way the Abolitionists have been 
enabled to hold Lincoln to the alliance up to this time, and now they 
have brought him into a fight against me, and he is to see if he is 
again to be cheated by them. Lincoln this time, though, required 
more of them than a promise, and holds their bond, if not security, 
that Lovejoy shall not cheat him as Trumbull did. [Renewed shouts 
of laughter.] 



222 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

When the Republican Convention assembled at Springfield, in 
June last, for the purpose of nominating State officers only, the Aboli- 
tionists could not get Lincoln and his friends into it until they would 
pledge themselves that Lincoln should be their candidate for the 
Senate; and you will find, in proof of this, that that Convention passed 
a resolution unanimously declaring that Abraham Lincoln was the 
^' first, last, and only choice" of the Republicans for United States 
Senator. He was not willing to have it understood that he was 
merely their first choice, or their last choice, but their only choice. 
The Black Republican party had nobody else. Browning was no- 
where; Governor Bissell was of no account; Archie Williams was not 
to be taken into consideration; John Wentworth was not worth 
{mentioning; John M. Palmer was degraded; and their party pre- 
sented the extraordinary spectacle of having but one, — the first, the 
last, and only choice for the Senate. [Laughter.] 

Suppose that Lincoln should die, what a horrible condition the 
Republican party would be in! [A groan from Lincoln, and great 
laughter.] They would have nobody left. They have no other 
choice, and it was necessary for them to put themselves before the 
world in this ludicrous, ridiculous attitude of having no other choice, 
an order to quiet Lincoln's suspicions, and assure him that he was not 
to be cheated by Lovejoy, and the trickery by which Trumbull out- 
generaled him. Well, gentlemen, I think they will have a nice time 
of it before they get through. I do not intend to give them any 
chance to cheat Lincoln at all this time. [Cheers.] I intend to 
relieve him^ of all anxiety upon that subject, and spare them the 
mortification of more exposures of contracts violated, and the pledged 
honor of rogues forfeited. [Great applause.] 

But I wish to invite your attention to the chief points at issue 
between Mr. Lincoln and myself in this discussion. Mr. Lincoln, 
knowing that he was to be the candidate of his party, on account of 
the arrangement of which I have already spoken, knowing that he 
was to receive the nomination of the Convention for the United States 
Senate, had his speech, accepting that nomination, all written and 
committed to memory, ready to be delivered the moment the nomina- 
tion was aimounced. Accordingly, when it was made, he was in 
readiness, and delivered his speech, a portion of which I will read in 
order that I may state his political principles fairly, by repeating 
them in his own language: — 

J Reads: "to relieve him and them from." 



DOUGLAS AT JONESBORO 223 

"We are now far into the fifth year since a pohcy was instituted for the 
avowed object, and with the confident promise, of putting an end to slavery 
agitation; under the operation of that poHey, that agitation has not only 
not ceased, but has constantly augmented. I beheve it will not cease until 
a crisis shall have been reached and passed. 'A house divided against itself 
cannot stand.' I beheve this Government 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 of slavery will 
arrest the spread of it, and place it where the pubUc mind shall rest in the 
belief that it is in the course of ultimate extinction, or its advocates will 
push it forward until it shall become ahke lawful in all the States, North as 
well as South." 

There you have Mr. Lincoln's first and main proposition, upon 
which he bases his claims, stated in his own language. He tells you 
that this Republic cannot endure permanently divided into Slave and 
Free States, as our fathers made it. He says that they must all 
become Free or all become Slave, that they must all be one thing or 
all be the other, or this Government cannot last. Why can it not 
last, if we will execute the Government in the same spirit and upon 
the same principles upon which it is founded? Lincoln, by his pro- 
position, says to the South : "If you desire to maintain your insti- 
tutions as they are now, you must not be satisfied with minding your 
own business, but you must invade Illinois and all the other Northern 
States, establish slavery in them, and make it universal;" and in the 
same language he says to the North: "You must not be content 
with regulating your own affairs and minding your own business, but 
if you desire to maintain your freedom, you must invade the Southern 
States, abolish slavery there and everywhere, in order to have the 
States all one thing or all the other. 

I say that this is the inevitable and irresistible result of Mr. Lin- 
coln's argument, inviting a warfare between the North and the South,, 
to be carried on with ruthless vengeance until the one section or the- 
other shall be driven to the wall, and become the victim of the 
rapacity of the other. What good would follow such a system of 
warfare? Suppose the North should succeed in conquering the South^ 
how much would she be the gainer? Or suppose the South should 
conquer the North, could the Union be preserved in that way? Is; 
this sectional warfare to be waged between the-*- Northern States and 
Southern States until they all shaU become imiform in their local and 
domestic institutions, merely because Mr. Lincoln says that a house 

i^"The" omitted. 



224 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

divided against itself cannot stand, and pretends that this scriptural 
quotation, this language of our Lord and Master, is applicable to the 
American Union and the American Constitution? 

Washington and his compeers, in the Convention that framed the 
Constitution, made this Government divided into Free and Slave 
States. It was composed then of thirteen sovereign and independent 
States, each having sovereign authority over its local and domestic 
institutions, and all bound together by the Federal Constitution. Mr. 
Lincoln likens that bond of the Federal Constitution, joining Free and 
Slave States together, to a house divided against itself, and says that 
it is contrary to the law of God, and cannot stand. When did he learn, 
and by what authority does he proclaim, that this Government is con- 
trary to the law of God and cannot stand? It has stood thus divided 
into Free and Slave States from its organization up to this day. Dur- 
ing that period we have increased from four millions to thirty millions 
of people ; we have extended our territory from the Mississippi to the 
Pacific Ocean; we have acquired the Floridas and Texas, and other 
territory sufficient to double our geographical extent; we have in- 
creased in population, in wealth, and in power beyond any example 
on earth ; we have risen from a weak and feeble power to become the 
terror and admiration of the civilized world; and all this had been 
done under a Constitution which Mr. Lincoln, in substance, says is in 
violation of the law of God, and under a Union divided into Free and 
Slave States, which Mr. Lincoln thinks, because of such division, 
cannot stand. 

Surely Mr. Lincoln is a wiser man than those who framed the Gov- 
ernment. Washington did not believe, nor did his compatriots, that 
the local laws and domestic institutions that were well adapted to the 
Green Mountains of Vermont were suited to the rice plantations of 
South Carolina; they did not believe at that day that in a Republic so 
broad and expanded as this, containing such a variety of climate, soil, 
and interest, that uniformity in the local laws and domestic institu- 
tions was either desirable or possible. They believed then, as our 
experience has proven to us now, that each locality, having different 
interests, a different climate, and different surroundings, required 
different local laws, local poHcy, and local institutions, adapted to the 
wants of that locality. Thus our Government was formed on the 
principle of diversity in the local institutions and laws, and not on 
that of uniformity. 



DOUGLAS AT JONESBORO 225 

As my time flies, I can only glance at these points, and not present 
them as fully as I would wish, because I desire to bring all the points 
in controversy between the two parties before you, in order to have 
Mr. Lincoln's reply. He makes war on the decision of the Supreme 
Court, in the case known as the Dred Scott case. I wish to say to you, 
fellow-citizens, that I have no war to make on that decision, or any 
other ever rendered by the Supreme Court. I am content to take that 
decision as it stands delivered by the highest judicial tribunal on earth, 
— a tribunal established by the Constitution of the United States for 
that purpose; and hence that decision becomes the law of the land, 
binding on you, on me, and on every other good citizen, whether we 
like it or not. Hence I do not choose to go into an argument to prove, 
before this audience, whether or not Chief Justice Taney understood 
the law better than Abraham Lincoln. [Laughter.] 

Mr. Lincoln objects to that decision, first and mainly because it 
deprives the negro of the right ^ of citizenship. I am as much opposed 
to his reason for that objection as I am to the objection itself. I hold 
that a negro is not and never ought to be a citizen of the United States. 
["Good, good," and tremendous cheers.] I hold that this Govern- 
ment was made on the white basis, by white men, for the benefit of 
white men and their posterity forever, and should be administered by 
white men and none others. I do not believe that the Almighty made 
the negro capable of self-government. I am aware that all the Abo- 
lition lecturers that you find traveling about through the country are 
in the habit of reading the Declaration of Independence to prove that 
all men were created equal, and endowed by their Creator with certain 
inalienable rights, among which were* life, liberty, and the pursuit of 
happiness. Mr. Lincoln is very much in the habit of following in the 
track of Lovejoy in this particular, by reading that part of the Declar- 
ation of Independence to prove that the negro was endowed by the 
Almighty with the inalienable right of equality with white men. 

Now, I say to you, my fellow-citizens, that in my opinion the signers 
of the Declaration had no reference to the negro whatever when they 
declared all men to be created equal. They desired to express by 
that phrase white men, men of European birth and European descent, 
and had no reference either to the negro, the savage Indians, the 
Fijian, 2 the Malay, or any other inferior and degraded race, when they 

iReads: "rights" tor "right." 
»Reads: "are" for "were." 
aReads: "Fejee" for "Fijian." 



226 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

spoke of the equality of men. One great evidence that such was their 
understanding is to be found in the fact that at that time every one of 
the thirteen colonies was a slave-holding colony, every signer of the 
Declaration represented a slaveholding constituency, and we know 
that no one of them emancipated his slaves, much less offered citizen- 
ship to them, when they signed the Declaration; and yet, if they^ in- 
tended to declare that the negro was the equal of the white man, and 
entitled by divine right to an equality with him, they were bound, as 
honest men, that day and hour to have put their negroes on an equality 
with themselves. [Cheers.] Instead of doing so, with uplifted eyes 
to Heaven they implored the divine blessing upon them, during the 
seven years' bloody war they had to fight to maintain that Declaration 
never dreaming that they were violating divine law by still holding 
the negroes in bondage and depriving them of equality. 

My friends, I am in favor of preserving this Government as our 
fathers made it. It does not follow by any means that because a 
negro is not your equal or mine, that hence he must necessarily be a 
slave. On the contrary, it does follow that we ought to extend to the 
negro every right, every privilege, every immunity, which he is 
capable of enjoying, consistent with the good of society. When you 
ask me what these rights are, what their nature and extent is, I tell 
you that that is a question which each State of this Union must decide 
for itself. Illinois has already decided the question. We have 
decided that the negro must not be a slave within our limits, but we 
have also decided that the negro shall not be a citizen within our 
limits; that he shall not vote, hold office, or exercise any political 
rights. I maintain that Illinois, as a sovereign State, has a right thus 
to fix her policy with reference to the relation between the white man 
and the negro; but while we had that right to decide the question for 
ourselves, we must recognize the same right in Kentucky and in 
every other State to make the same decision, or a different one. 
Having decided our own policy with reference to the black race, we 
must leave Kentucky and Missouri and every other State perfectly 
free to make just such a decision as they see proper on that question. 

Kentucky has decided that question for herself. She has said that 
within her limits a negro shall not exercise any political rights, and 
she has also said that a portion of the negroes under the laws of that 

^Inserts "had" after "they." 



DOUGLAS AT JONESBORO 227 

State shall be slaves. She had as much right to adopt that as her pol- 
icy as we had to adpot the contrary for our policy. New York has 
decided that in that State a negro may vote if he has $250 worth of 
property, and if he owns that much he may vote upon an equality 
with the white man. I, for one, am utterly opposed to negro suffrage 
anywhere and under any circumstances; yet, inasmuch as the Supreme 
Court have decided in the celebrated Dred Scott case that a State has 
a right to confer the privilege of voting upon free negroes, I am not 
going to make war upon New York because she has adopted a policy 
repugnant to my feelings. ["That's good. "] But New York must 
mind her own business, and keep her negro suffrage to herself, and not 
attempt to force it upon us. [Great applause.] 

In the State of Maine they have decided that a negro may vote and 
hold office on an equality with a white man. I had occasion to say to 
the senators from Maine, in a discussion last session, that if they 
thought that the white people within the limits of their State were no 
better than negroes, I would not quarrel with them for it, but they 
must not say that my white constituents of Illinois were no better 
than negroes, or we would be sure to quarrel. [Cheers.] 

The Dred Scott decision covers the whole question, and declares 
that each State has the right to settle this question of suffrage for 
itself, and all questions as to the relations between the white man and 
the negro. Judge Taney expressly lays down the doctrine, I re- 
ceive it as law, and I say that while those States are adopting regula- 
tions on that subject disgusting and abhorrent, according to my 
views, I will not make war on them if they will mind their own busi- 
ness and let us alone. ["Bravo," and cheers.] 

I now come back to the question, Why cannot this Union exist for- 
ever, divided into Free and Slave States, as our fathers made it? It 
can thus exist if each State will carry out the principles upon which 
our institutions were founded; to wit, the right of each State to do as 
it pleases, without meddling with its neighbors. Just act upon that 
great principle, and this Union will not only live forever, but it will 
extend and expand until it covers the whole continent, and makes this 
confederacy one grand ocean-bound Republic. We must bear in 
mind that we are yet a young nation, growing with a rapidity un- 
equalled in the history of the world, that our national increase is 
great, and that the emigration from the Old World is increasing, 
requiring us to expand and acquire new territory from time to time, 



228 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

in order to give our people land to live upon. If we live up to the 
principle of State rights and State sovereignty, each State regulating 
its own affairs and minding its own business, we can go on and extend 
indefinitely, just as fast and as far as we need the territory. The 
time may come, indeed has now come, when our interests would be 
advanced by the acquisition of the Island of Cuba. [Terrific ap- 
plause.] When we get Cuba we must take it as we find it, leaving the 
people to decide the question of slavery for themselves, without 
interference on the part of the Federal Government or of any State 
of this Union. 

So, when it becomes necessary to acquire an}- portion of Mexico or 
Canada, or of this continent or the adjoining islands, we must take 
them as we find them, leaving the people free to do as they please, — 
to have slavery or not, as they choose. I never have inquired and 
never will inquire whether a new State, applying for admission, has 
slavery or not for one of her institutions. If the Constitution that is 
presented be the act and deed of the people, and embodies their will, 
and they have the requisite population, I will admit them, with 
slavery or without it, just as that people shall determine. ["That's 
good, " " That's right, " and cheers.] My objection to the Lecompton 
Constitution did not consist in the fact that it made Kansas a Slave 
State. I would have been as much opposed to its admission under 
such a Constitution as a Free State as I was opposed to its admission 
under it as a Slave State. I hold that that was a question which that 
people had a right to decide for themselves, and that no power on 
earth ought to have interfered with that decision. In my opinion, 
the Lecompton Constitution was not the act and deed of the people 
of Kansas, and did not embody their will; and the recent election in 
that Territory, at which it was voted down by nearly ten to one, 
shows conclusively that I was right in saying, when the Constitution 
was presented, that it was not the act and deed of the people, and did 
not embody their will. 

If we wish to preserve our institutions in their purity, and trans- 
mit them unimpaired to our latest posterity, we must preserve with 
religious good faith that great principle of self-government which 
guarantees to each and every State, old and new, the right to make 
just such constitutions as they desire, and come into the Union with 
their own constitution, and not one palmed upon them. [Cheers.] 
Whenever you sanction the doctrine that Congress may crowd a 



LINCOLN AT JONESBORO 229 

constitution clown the throats of an unwilling people, against their 
consent, you will subvert the great fundamental principle upon which 
all our free institutions rest. In the future I have no fear that the 
attempt will ever be made. President Buchanan declared in his 
annual message that hereafter the rule adopted in the Minnesota case, 
requiring a constitution to be submitted to the people, should be 
followed in all future cases ; and if he stands by that recommendation 
there will be no division in the Democratic party on that principle in 
the future. Hence, the great mission of the Democracy is to unite 
the fraternal feeling of the whole country, restore peace and quiet, by 
teaching each State to mind its own business, and regulate its own 
domestic affairs, and all to unite in carrying out the Constitution as 
our fathers made it, and thus to preserve the Union and render it 
perpetual in all time to come. 

Why should we not act as our fathers who made the Government? 
There was no sectional strife in Washington's army. They were all 
brethern of a common confederacy ; they fought under a common flag 
that they might bestow upon their posterity a common destiny; and 
to this end they poured out their blood in common streams, and 
shared, in some instances, a common grave. [Three hearty cheers 
for Douglas.] 

Mr. Lincoln's Reply 

Mr. Lincoln was then introduced to the audience by D. L. Phillips, 
Esq., and was greeted with three cheers, and then three more; after 
which he said : 

Ladies and Gentlemen: There is very much in the principles that 
Judge Douglas has here enunciated that I most cordially approve, and 
over which I shall have no controversy with him. In so far as he has 
insisted that all the States have the right to do exactly as they please 
about all their domestic relations, including that of slavery, I agree 
entirely with him. He places me wrong in spite of all I can tell him, 
though I repeat it again and again, insisting that I have no difference 
with him upon this subject. I have made a great many speeches, 
some of which have been printed, and it will be utterly impossible for 
him to find anything that I have ever put in print contrary to what I 
now say upon this subject. I hold myself under Constitutional 
obligations to allow the people in all the States, without interference, 
direct or indirect, to do exactly as they please; and I deny that I 
have any inclination to interfere with them, even if there were no 



230 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

such Constitutional obligations. I can only say again that I am 
placed improperly — altogether improperly, in spite of all I can say — 
when it is insisted that I entertain any other view or purpose in regard 
to that matter. 

While I am upon this subject, I will make some answers briefly to 
certain propositions that Judge Douglas has put. He says, "Why 
can't this Union endure permanently, half Slave and half Free?" I 
have said that I suppose it could not, and I will try, before this new 
audience, to give briefly some of the reasons for entertaining that 
opinion. Another form of his question is, ''Why can't we let it stand 
as our fathers placed it?" That is the exact difficulty between us. 
I say that Judge Douglas and his friends have changed it^ from the 
position in which our fathers originally placed it. I say, in the way 
our fathers originally left the slavery question, the institution was in 
the course of ultimate extinction, and the public mind rested in the 
belief that it was in the course of ultimate extinction. I say, when 
this Government was first established, it was the policy of its founders 
to prohibit the spread of slavery into the new Territories of the United 
States, where it had not existed. But Judge Douglas and his friends 
have broken up that policy, and placed it upon a new basis, by which 
it is to become national and perpetual. All I have asked or desired 
anywhere is that it should be placed back again upon the basis that 
the fathers of our Government originally placed it upon. I have no 
doubt that it would become extinct, for all time to come if we but 
re-adopted the policy of the fathers, by restricting it to the limits it 
has already covered, — restricting it from the new Territories. 

I do not wish to dwell at great length on this branch of the subject 
at this time, but allow me to repeat one thing that I have stated 
before. Brooks — the man who assaulted Senator Sumner on the 
floor of the Senate, and who was complimented with dinners, and 
silver pitchers, and gold-headed canes, and a good many other things 
for that feat — in one of his speeches declared that when this Govern- 
ment was originally established, nobody expected that the institution 
of slavery would last until this day. That was but the opinion of one 
man, but it was such an opinion as we can never get from Judge 
Douglas or anybody in favor of slavery in the North at all. You can 
sometimes get it from a Southern man. He said at the same time 
that the framers of our Government did not have the knowledge that 

1 Reads: "them" for "it." 



LINCOLN AT JONESBORO 231 

experience has taught us; that experience and the invention of the 
cotton-gin have taught us that the perpetuation of slavery is a neces- 
sity. .He insisted, therefore, upon its being changed from the basis 
upon which the fathers of the Government left it to the basis of its 
perpetuation and nationalization. 

I insist that this is the difference between Judge Douglas and my- 
self, — that Judge Douglas is helping that change along. I insist upon 
this Government being placed where our fathers orginally placed it. 

I remember Judge Douglas once said that he saw the evidences on 
the statute books of Congress of a policy in the origin of the Govern- 
ment to divide slavery and freedom by a geographical line ; that he saw 
an indisposition to maintain that policy, and therefore he set about 
studying up a way to settle the institution on the right basis, — the 
basis which he thought it ought to have been placed upon at first; and 
in that speech he confesses that he seeks to place it, not upon the basis 
that the fathers placed it upon, but upon one gotten up on "original 
principles. " When he asks me why we cannot get along with it in 
the attitude where our fathers placed it, he had better clear up the 
evidences that he has himself changed it from that basis, that he has 
himself been chiefly instrumental in changing the policy of the fathers. 
[Applause.] Any one who will read his speech of the 22d of last March 
will see that he there makes an open confession, showing that he set 
about fixing the institution upon an altogether different set of prin- 
ciples. I think I have fully answered him when he asks me why we 
cannot let it alone upon the basis where our fathers left it, by showing 
that he has himself changed the whole policy of the Government in 
that regard. 

Now, fellow-citizens, in regard to this matter about a contract that 
was made between Judge Trumbull and myself, and all that long por- 
tion of Judge Douglas's speech on this subject, — I wish simply to say 
what I have said to him before, that he cannot know whether it is true 
or not, and I do know that there is not a word of truth in it. [Ap- 
plause.] And I have told him so before. [Continued applause. 
"That's right." "Hit him again."] I don't want any harsh lan- 
guage indulged in, but I do not know how to deal with this persistent 
insisting on a story that I know to be utterly without truth. It used 
to be a fashion amongst men that when a charge was made, some sort 
of proof was brought forward to establish it, and if no proof was found 
to exist, the charge was dropped. I don't know how to meet this 



232 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

kind of an argument. I don't want to have a fight with Judge Doug- 
las, and I have no way of making an argument up into the consistency 
of a corn-cob and stopping his mouth with it. [Laughter and ap- 
plause.] All I can do is, good-humoredly to say that, from the begin- 
ning to the end of all that story about a bargain between Judge 
Trumbull and myself, there is not a word of truth in it. [Applause.] 

I can only ask him to show some sort of evidence of the truth of his 
story. He brings forward here and reads from what he contends is a 
speech by James H. Matheny, charging such a bargain between Trum- 
bull and myself. My own opinion is that Matheny did do some such 
immoral thing as to tell a story that he knew nothing about. I believe 
he did. I contradicted it instantly, and it has been contradicted by 
Judge Trumbull, while nobody has produced any proof, because there 
is none. Now, whether the speech which the Judge brings forward 
here is really the one Matheny made, I do not know, and I hope the 
Judge will pardon me for doubting the genuiness of this document, 
since his production of those Springfield resolutions at Ottawa. 
[Laughter and cheers.] I do not wish to dwell at any great length 
upon this matter. I can say nothing when a long story like this is 
told, except it is not true, and demand that he who insists upon it 
shall produce some proof. That is all any man can do, and I leave it 
in that way, for I know of no other way of dealing with it. 

The Judge has gone over a long account of the old Whig and Demo- 
cratic parties, and it connects itself with this charge against Trumbull 
and myself. He says that they agreed upon a compromise in regard 
to the slavery question in 1850; that in a National Democratic Con- 
vention resolutions were passed to abide by that compromise as a 
finality upon the slavery question. He also says that the Whig party 
in National Convention agreed to abide by and regard as a finality 
the Compromise of 1850. I understand the Judge to be altogether 
right about that ; I understand that part of the history of the country 
as stated by him to be correct. I recollect that I, as a member of that 
party, acquiesced in that compromise. I recollect in the Presidential 
election which followed, when we had General Scott up for the Presi- 
dency, Judge Douglas was around berating us Whigs as Abolitionists, 
precisely as he does to-day, — not a bit of difference. I have often 
heard him. We could do nothing when the old Whig party was alive 
that was not Abolitionism; but it has got an extremely good name 
since it has passed away. [Laughter.] 



LINCOLN AT JONESBORO 233 

When that Compromise was made it did not repeal the old Missouri 
Compromise. It left a region of the United States territory half as 
large as the present territory of the United States, north of the line 
of 36 degrees 30 minutes, in which slavery was prohibited by Act of 
Congress. This Compromise did not repeal that one. It did not 
affect or propose to repeal it. But at last it became Judge Douglas's 
duty, as he thought (and I find no fault with him) , as Chairman of the 
Committee on Territories, to bring in a bill for the organization of a 
Territorial Government, — first of one, then of two Territories north of 
that line. When he did so, it ended in his inserting a provision sub- 
stantially repealing the Missouri Compromise. That was because the 
Compromise of 1850 had not repealed it. 

And now I ask why he could not have let that Compromise alone? 
We were quiet from the agitation of the slavery question. We were 
making no fuss about it. All had acquiesced in the Compromise meas- 
ures of 1850. We never had been seriously disturbed by any Aboli- 
tion agitation before that period. When he came to form govern- 
ments for the Territories north of the line 36 degrees 30 minutes, why 
could he not have let that matter stand as it was standing? [Applause] 
Was it necessary to the organization of a Territory? Not at all. 
Iowa lay north of the line, and had been organized as a Territory 
and^ come into the Union as a State without disturbing that Com- 
promise. There was no sort of necessity for destroying it to organize 
these Territories. 

But, gentlemen, it would take up all my time to meet all the little 
quibbling arguments of Judge Douglas to show that the Missouri Com- 
promise was repealed by the Compromise of 1850. My own opinion 
is, that a careful investigation of all the arguments to sustain the 
position that that Compromise was virtually repealed by the Com- 
promise of 1850 would show that they are the merest fallacies. I 
have the Report that Judge Douglas first brought into Congress at 
the time of the introduction of the Nebraska bill, which in its original 
form did not repeal the Missouri Compromise, and he there expressly 
stated that he had forborne to do so because it had not been done by the 
Compromise of 1850. I close this part of the discussion on my part 
by asking him the question again, " Why, when we had peace under 
the Missouri Compromise, could you not have let it alone?" 

In complaining of what I said in my speech at Springfield, in which 

^Inserts "had" after "and." 



234 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

he says I accepted my nomination for the senatorship (where, by the 
way, he is at fault, for if he will examine it, he will find no acceptance 
in it) , he again quotes that portion in which I said that " a house 
divided against itself cannot stand. " Let me say a word in regard 
to that matter. 

He tries to persuade us that there must be a variety in the different 
institutions of the States of the Union; that that variety necessarily 
proceeds from the variety of soil, climate, of the face of the country, 
and the difference in the natural features of the States. I agree to all 
that. Have these very matters ever produced any difficulty amongst 
us? Not at all. Have we ever had any quarrel over the fact that 
they have laws in Louisiana designed to regulate the commerce that 
springs from the production of sugar? Or because we have a different 
class relative to the production of flour in this State? Have they 
produced any differences? Not at all. They are the very cements 
of this Union. They don't make the house a house divided against 
itself. They are the props that hold up the house and sustain the 
Union. 

But has it been so with this element of slavery? Have we not 
always had quarrels and difficulties over it? And when will we cease 
to have quarrels over it? Like causes produce like effects. It is 
worth while to observe that we have generally had comparative peace 
upon the slavery question, and that there has been no cause for alarm 
until it was excited by the effort to spread it into new territory. 
Whenever it has been limited to its present bounds, and there has 
been no effort to spread it, there has been peace. All the trouble and 
convulsion has proceeded from efforts to spread it over more territory. 
It was thus at the date of the Missouri Compromise. It was so again 
with the annexation of Texas; so with the territory acquired by the 
Mexican war; and it is so now. Whenever there has been an effort 
to spread it, there has been agitation and resistance. 

Now, I appeal to this audience (very few of whom are my political 
friends), as national men, whether we have reason to expect that the 
agitation in regard to this subject will cease while the causes that tend 
to reproduce agitation are actively at work? Will not the same cause 
that produced agitation in 1820, when the Missouri Compromise was 
formed, — that which produced the agitation upon the annexation of 
Texas, and at other times, — work out the same results always? Do 
you think that the nature of man will be changed? that the same 



LINCOLN AT JONESBORO 235 

causes that produced agitation at one time will not have the same 
effect at another? 

This has been the result so far as my observation of the slavery 
question and my reading in history extends. What right have we 
then to hope that the trouble will cease, — that the agitation will come 
to an end, — until it shall either be placed back where it originally 
stood, and where the fathers originally placed it, or, on the other hand, 
until it shall entirely master all opposition? This is the view I enter- 
tain, and this is the reason why-*- I entertained it, as Judge Douglas 
has read from my Springfield speech. 

Now, my friends, there is one other thing that I feel myself under 
some sort of obligation to mention. Judge Douglas has here to-day — 
in a very rambling way, I was about saying — spoken of the platforms 
for which he seeks to hold me responsible. He says, " Why can't you 
come out and make an open avowal of principles in all places alike? " 
and he reads from an advertisement that he says was used to notify 
the people of a speech to be made by Judge Trumbull at Waterloo. 
In commenting on it he desires to know whether we cannot speak 
frankly and manfully, as he and his friends do. How, I ask, do his 
friends speak out their own sentiments? A Convention of his party 
in this State met on the 21st of April at Springfield, and passed a set 
of resolutions which they proclaim to the country as their platform. 
This does constitute their platform, and it is because Judge Douglas 
claims it is his platform — that these are his principles and purposes — 
that he has a right to declare he speaks his sentiments " frankly and 
manfully. " On the 9th of June, Colonel John Dougherty, Governor 
Reynolds, and others, calling themselves National Democrats, met in 
Springfield and adopted a set of resolutions which are as easily under- 
stood, as plain and as definite in stating to the country and to the 
world what they believed in and would stand upon, as Judge Doug- 
las's platform. Now what is the reason that Judge Douglas is not 
willing that Colonel Dougherty and Governor Reynolds should stand 
upon their own written and printed platform as well as he upon his? 
Why must he look farther than their platform when he claims himself 
to stand by his platform? 

Again, in reference to our platform: On the 16th of June the Re- 
publicans had their Convention and published their platform, which 
is as clear and distinct as Judge Douglas's. In it they spoke their 

iOmits"why." 



236 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

principles as plainly and as definitely to the world. What is the 
reason that Judge Douglas is not willing I should stand upon that 
platform? Why must he go around hunting for some one who is 
supporting me, — or has supported me at some time in his life, and who 
has said something at some time contrary to that platform? Does 
the Judge regard that rule as a good one? If it turn out that the rule 
is a good one for me, that I am responsible for any and every opinion 
that any man has expressed who is my friend, — then it is a good rule 
for him. I ask. Is it not as good a rule for him as it is for me? In 
my opinion it is not a good rule for either of us. Do you think dif- 
ferently, Judge? 

Mr. Douglas. — I do not. 

Mr. Lincoln. — Judge Douglas says he does not think differently. 
I am glad of it. Then can he tell me why he is looking up resolutions 
of five or six years ago, and insisting that they were my platform, not- 
withstanding my protest that they are not, and never were my plat- 
form, and my pointing out the platforai of the State Convention which 
he delights to say nominated me for the Senate? I cannot see what he 
means by parading these resolutions, if it is not to hold me responsible 
for them in some way. If he says to me here that he does not hold the 
rule to be good, one way or the other, I do not comprehend how he 
could answer me more fully if he answered me at greater length. 

I will therefore put in as my answer to the resolutions that he has 
hunted up against me, what I, as a lawyer, would call a good plea to a 
bad declaration. I understand that it is a maxim of law that a poor 
plea may be a good plea to a bad declaration. [Laughter.] I think 
that the opinions the Judge brings from those who support me, yet 
differ from me, are-"- a bad declaration against me; but if I can bring 
the same things against him, I am putting in a good plea to that kind 
of declaration, and now I propose to try it. 

At Freeport, Judge Douglas occupied a large part of his time in 
producing resolutions and documents of various sorts, as I understood, 
to make me somehow responsible for them ; and I propose now doing 
a little of the same sort of thing for him. In 1850 a very clever gentle- 
man by the name of Thompson Campbell, a personal friend of Judge 
Douglas and myself, a political friend of Judge Douglas and opponent 
of mine, was a candidate for Congress in the Galena District. He was 
interrogated as to his views on this same slavery question. I have 

iReads: "is" for "are." 



LINCOLN AT JONESBORO 237 

here before me the interrogatories, and Campbell's answers to them. 
I will read them: — 

Interrogatories 

1. Will you, if elected, vote for and cordially support a bill prohibiting 
slavery in the Territories of the United States? 

2. Will you vote for and support a bill abohshing slavery in the District of 
Columbia? 

3. Will you oppose the admission of any Slave States which may be 
formed out of Texas or the Territories? 

4. Will you vote for and advocate the repeal of the Fugitive-Slave law 
passed at the recent session of Congress? 

5. Will you advocate and vote for the election of a Speaker of the House 
of Representatives who shall be willing to organize the committees of that 
House so as to give the Free States their just influence in the business of 
legislation? 

6. What are your views, not only as to the constitutional right of Congress 
to prohibit the slave trade between the States, but also as to the expediency 
of exercising that right immediately? 

Campbell's Reply. 

To the first and second interrogatories, I answer unequivocally in the affirm- 
ative. 

To the third interrogatory I reply, that I am opposed to the admission of 
any more Slave States into the Union, that may be formed out of Texas or any 
other Territory. 

To the fourth and fifth interrogatories I unhesitatingly answer in the affirm- 
ative. 

To the sixth interrogatory I reply, that so long as the Slave States continue 
to treat slaves as articles of commerce, the Constitution confers power on 
Congress to pass laws regulating that pecuhar COMMERCE, and that the pro- 
tection of Human Rights imperatively demands the interposition of everj- 
constitutional means to prevent this most inhuman and iniquitous traffic. 

T. Campbell. 

I want here to say that Thompson Campbell was elected to Congress 
on that platform, as the Democratic candidate in the Galena District, 
against Martin P. Sweet. 

Judge Douglas. — Give me the date of the letter. 

Mr. Lincoln. — The time Campbell ran was in 1850. I have not the 
exact date here. It was sometime in 1850 that these interrogatories 
were put and the answer given. Campbell was elected to Congress, 
and served out his term. I think a second election came up before he 
served out his term, and he was not re-elected. Whether defeated 
or not nominated, I do not know. [Mr. Campbell was nominated for 
re-election by the Democratic party, by acclamation.] At the end of 
his term his very good friend Judge Douglas got him a high office from 



238 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

President Pierce, and sent him off to California. Is not that the fact? 
Just at the end of his term in Congress it appears that our mutual 
friend Judge Douglas got our mutual friend Campbell a good office, 
and sent him to California upon it. And not only so, but on the 27th 
of last month, when Judge Douglas and myself spoke at Freeport in 
joint discussion, there was his same friend Campbell, come all the way 
from California, to help the Judge beat me; and there was poor Martin 
P. Sweet standing on the platform, trying to help poor me to be elected. 
[Laughter.] That is true of one of Judge Douglas's friends. 

So again, in the same race of 1850, there was a Congressional Con- 
vention assembled at Joliet, and it nominated R. S. Molony for Con- 
gress, and unanimously adopted the following resolution: — 

" Resolved, That we are uncompromisingly opposed to the extension of slav- 
ery; and while we would not make such opposition a ground of interference 
with the interests of the States where it exists, yet we moderately but firmly 
insist that it is the duty of Congress to oppose its extension into Territory now 
free, by all means compatible with the obligations of the Constitution, and 
with good faith to our sister States ; that these principles were recognized by 
the Ordinance of 1787, which received the sanction of Thomas Jefferson, who 
is acknowledged by all to be the great oracle and expounder of our faith. " 

Subsequently the same interrogatories were propounded to Dr. 
Molony which had been addressed to Campbell, as above, with the 
exception of the 6th, respecting the interstate slave trade, to which 
Dr. Molony the Democratic nominee for Congress, replied as follows : — 

I received the written interrogatories this day, and, as you will see by the 
La Salle Democrat and Ottawa Free Trader I took at Peru on the 5th, and at 
Ottawa on the 7th, the affirmative side of interrogatories 1st and 2nd ; and in 
relation to the admission of any more Slave States from Free Territory, my 
position taken at these meetings, as correctly reported in said papers, was em- 
phatically and distinctly opposed to it. In relation to the admission of any 
more Slave States from Texas, whether I shall go against it or not will depend 
upon the opinion that I may hereafter form of the true meaning and nature of 
the resolutions of annexation. If, by said resolutions, the honor and good 
faith of the nation is pledged to admit more Slave States from Texas when she 
(Texas) may apply for the admission of such States, then I should, if in Con- 
gress, vote for their admission. But if not so pledged and bound by sacred 
contract, then a bill for the admission of more Slave States from Texas will^ 
never receive my vote. 

To your fourth interrogatory I answer most decidedly in the affirmative, and 
for reasons set forth in my reported remarks at Ottawa last Monday. 

To your fifth interrogatory I also reply in the affirmative most cordially, and 
that I will use my utmost exertions to secure the nomination and election of a 

»Reads: "would" for "will." 



LINCOLN AT JONESBORO 239 

nan who will accomplish the objects of said interrogatories. I most cordially 
ipprove of the resolutions adopted at the union meeting held at Princeton on 
the 27th September ult. 

Yours, etc. R. S. Molony 

All I have to say in regard to Dr. Molony is, that he was the regu- 
arly nominated Democratic candidate for Congress in his district; was 
elected at that time, at the end of his term was appointed to a land- 
jffice at Danville. (I never heard anything of Judge Douglas's 
instrumentality in this.) He held this office a considerable time, and 
K^hen we were at Freeport the other day, there were handbills scat- 
tered about notifying the public that after our debate was over, R. S. 
Molony would make a Democratic speech in favor of Judge Douglas, 
rhat is all I know of my own personal knowledge. It is added here 
to this resolution, and I truly believe, that — 

"Among those who participated in the Joliet Convention, and who sup- 
ported its nominee, with his platform as laid down in the resolution of the 
Convention and in his reply as above given, we call at random the following 
aames, all of which are recognized at this day as leading Democrats: — 

Cook County: E. B. WilUams, Charles McDonnell, Arno Voss, Thomas 
Hoyne, Isaac Cook. " 

I reckon we ought to except Cook. 

"F. C. Sherman. 

"Will: Joel A. Matteson, S. W. Bowen. 

"Kane: B. F. Hall, G. W. Renwick, A. M. Herrington, Elijah Wilcox. 

"McHenry: W. M. Jackson, Enos W. Smith, Neil Donnelly. 

" La Salle: John Hise, William Reddick. " 

William Reddick! another one of Judge Douglas's friends that 

stood on the stand with him at Ottawa, at the time the Judge says my 

knees trembled so that I had to be carried away. The names are all 

here : — 

" Du Page : Nathan Allen . 
"DeKalb: Z. B. Mayo." 

Here is another set of resolutions which I think are apposite to the 
matter in hand. 

On the 28th of February of the same year, a Democratic District 
Convention was held at Naperville to nominate a candidate for Circuit 
Judge, Among the delegates were Bowen and Kelly, of Will; Captain 
Naper, H. H. Cody, Nathan Allen, of Du Page; W. M. Jackson, J. M. 
Strode, P. W. Piatt [sic], and Enos W. Smith, of McHenry ; J. Horsman 
and others, of Winnebago. Colonel Strode presided over the Conven- 
tion. The following resolutions were unanimously adopted, — the first 



240 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

on motion of P. W. Pratt [sic], the second on motion of William M. 
Jackson : — 

'' Resolved, That this Convention is in favor of the Wilmot Proviso, both in 
Principle and Practice and that we know of no good reason why any person 
should oppose the largest latitude in Free Soil, Free Territory and Free Speech. 

"Resolved, That in the opinion of this Convention, the time has arrived 
when all men should be free, whites as well as others. " 

Judge Douglas. — TMiat is the date of those resolutions? 

Mr. Lincoln. — I understand it was in 1850, but I do not know it. 
I do not state a thing and say I know it, when I do not. But I have 
the highest belief that this is so. I know of no way to arrive at the 
conclusion that there is an error in it. I mean to put a case no 
stronger than the truth will allow. But what I was going to comment 
upon is an extract from a newspaper in De Kalb County; and it 
strikes me as being rather singular, I confess, under the circumstances. 
There is a Judge Mayo in that county, who is a candidate for the 
Legislature, for the purpose, if he secures his election, of helping to 
re-elect Judge Douglas. He is the editor of a newspaper [DeKalb 
County Sentinel], and in that paper I find the extract I am going to 
read. It is part of an editorial article in which he was electioneering 
as fiercely as he could for Judge Douglas and against me. It was a 
curious thing, I think, to be in such a paper. I will agree to that, and 
the Judge may make the most of it: — 

" Our education has been such that we have ever been rather in favor of the 
equality of the blacks; that is, that they should enjoy all the privileges of the whites 
where they reside. We are aware that this is not a very popular doctrine. We 
have had many a confab with some who are now strong 'Republicans, ' we 
taking the broad ground of equahty, and they the opposite ground. 

"We were brought up in a State where blacks were voters, and we do not 
know of any inconvenience resulting from it, though perhaps it would not 
work as well where the blacks are more numerous. We have no doubt of the 
right of the whites to guard against such an evil, if it is one. Our opinion is 
that it would be best for all concerned to have the colored population in a 
State by themselves [in this I agree with him] ; but if within the jurisdiction of 
the United States, we say by all means they should have the right to have their 
Senators and Representatives in Congress, and to vote for President. With us 
' worth makes the man, and want of it the fellow. ' We have seen many a 
'nigger' that we thought more of than some white men." 

That is one of Judge Douglas's friends. Now, I do not want to 
leave myself in an attitude where I can be misrepresented, so I will 
say I do not think the Judge is responsible for this article : but he is 



LINCOLN AT JOXESBORO 241 

quite as responsible for it as I would be if one of my friends had said it. 
I think that is fair enough. [Cheers.] 

I have here also a set of resolutions passed by a Democratic State 
Convention in Judge Douglas's own good old State of Vermont, that I 
think ought to be good for him too : — 

" Resolved, That liberty is a right inherent and inalienable in man, and that 
herein all men are equal. 

" Resolved, That we claim no authority in the Federal Government to abol- 
ish slaverj- in the several States, but we do claim for it Constitutional power 
perpetually to prohibit the introduction of slavery into territory now free, and 
aboUsh it wherever, under the jurisdiction of Congress, it exists. 

" Resolved, That this power ought immediately to be exercised in prohibiting 
the introduction and existence of slavery in New Mexico and CaUfomia, in 
aboUshing slavery and the slave trade in the District of Columbia, on the high 
seas, and wherever ebe, under the Constitution, it can be reached. 

" Resolved, That no more Slave States should be admitted into the Federal 
Union. 

" Resolved, That the Government ought to return to its ancient pohcy. not to 
extend, nationahze, or encourage, but to limit, locahze, and discourage slav- 
erj-." 

At Freeport I answered several interrogatories that had been pro- 
pounded to me by Judge Douglas at the Ottawa meeting. The Judge 
has not yet seen fit to find any fault with the position that I took in 
regard to those seven interrogatories, which were certainly broad 
enough, in all conscience, to cover the entire groimd. In my answers, 
which have been printed, and all have had the opportunity of seeing, 
I take the ground that those who elect me must expect that I will do 
nothing which will not be^ in accordance with those answers. I have 
some right to assert that Judge Douglas has no fault to find with them. 
But he chooses to still tv}- to thrust me upon different groimd. with- 
out paying any attention to my answers, the obtaining of which from 
me cost him so much trouble and concern. At the same time I pro- 
pounded four interrogatories to him, claiming it as a right that he 
should answer as many interrogatories for me as I did for him, and I 
would reser\'e myself for a future installment when I got them ready. 
The Judge, in answering me upon that occasion, put in what I suppose 
he intends as answers to all four of my interrogatories. The first one 
of these interrogatories I have before me, and it is in these words: — 
" Question 1. If the people of Kansas shall, by means entirely unobjection- 
able in all other respects, adopt a State Constitution, and ask admission into 
the Union under it, before they have the requisite number of inhabitants ac- 
cording to the EngUsh bill, — some ninety-three thousand, — will you vote to 
admit them?" 

iReads: "is" for "will be." 



242 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

As I read the Judge's answer in the newspaper, and as I remember 
it as propounded at the time, he does not give any answer which is 
equivalent to yes or no, — I will or I won't. He answers at very con- 
siderable length, rather quarreling with me for asking the question, 
and insisting that Judge Trumbull had done something that I ought 
to say something about, and finally getting out such statements as 
induce me to infer that he means to be understood he will, in that 
supposed case, vote for the admission of Kansas. I only bring this 
forward now for the purpose of saying that if he chooses to put a 
different construction upon his answer he may do it. But if he does 
not, I shall from this time forward assume that he will vote for the 
admission of Kansas in disregard of-^ the English bill. He has the 
right to remove any misunderstanding I may have. I only mention 
it now, that I may hereafter assume this to be the true construction 
of his answer, if he does not now choose to correct me. 

The second interrogatory that I propounded to him was this: — 
" Question 2. Can the people of a United States Territory, in any lawful 
way, against the wish of any citizen of the United States, exclude slavery from 
its limits prior to the formation of a State Constitution?" 

To this Judge Douglas answered that they can lawfully exclude 
slavery from the Territory prior to the formation of a Constitution. 
He goes on to tell us how it can be done. As I understand him, he 
holds that it can be done by the Territorial Legislature refusing to 
make any enactments for the protection of slavery in the Territory, 
and especially by adopting unfriendly legislation to it. For the sake 
of clearness, I state it again : that they can exclude slavery from the 
Territory, 1st, by withholding what he assumes to be an indespensable 
assistance to it in the way of legislation; and, 2d, by unfriendly legis- 
lation. If I rightly understand him, I wish to ask your attention for 
a while to his position. 

In the first place, the Supreme Court of the United States has 
decided that any Congressional prohibition of slavery in the Territories 
is unconstitutional; that they have reached this proposition as a con- 
clusion from their former proposition, that the Constitution of the 
United States expressly recognizes property in slaves, and from that 
other Constitutional provision, that no person shall be deprived of 
property without due process of law. Hence they reach the conclu- 
sion that as the Constitution of the United States expressly recognizes 
property in slaves, and prohibits any person from being deprived of 

^Reads: "according to" for "in disregard of." 



LINCOLN AT JONESBORO 243 

property without due process of law, to pass an Act of Congress by 
which a man who owned a slave on one side of a line would be deprived 
of him if he took him on the other side, is depriving him of that pro- 
perty without due process of law. That I understand to be the 
decision of the Supreme Court. I understand also that Judge Doug- 
las adheres most firmly to that decision; and the difficulty is, how is it 
possible for any power to exclude slavery from the Territory, unless 
in violation of that decision? That is the difficulty. 

In the Senate of the United States, in 1856, Judge Trumbull, in a 
speech substantially, if not directly, put the same interrogatory to 
Judge Douglas, as to whether the people of a Territory had the lawful 
power to exclude slavery prior to the formation of a constitution. 
Judge Douglas then answered at considerable length, and his answer 
will be found in the Congressional Globe, under date of June 9th, 1856. 
The Judge said that whether the people could exclude slavery prior to 
the formation of a constitution or not was a question to he decided by the 
Supreme Court. He put that proposition, as will be seen by the Con- 
gressional Globe, in a variety of forms, all running to the same thing in 
substance, — that it was a question for the Supreme Court. I main- 
tain that when he says, after the Supreme Court have decided the 
question, that the people may yet exclude slaveiy by any means 
whatever, he does virtually say that it is not a question for the Supreme 
Court. [Applause.] 

He shifts his ground. I appeal to you whether he did not say it was 
a question for the Supreme Court? Has not the Supreme Court 
decided that question? When he now says the people may exclude 
slavery, does he not make it a question for the people? Does he not 
virtually shift his ground and say that it is not a question for the court , 
but for the people? This is a very simple proposition, — a very plain 
and naked one. It seems to me that there is no difficulty in deciding 
it. In a variety of ways he said that it was a question for the Supreme 
Court. He did not stop then to tell us that whatever the Supreme 
Court decides, the people can by withholding necessary "police regu- 
lations" keep slavery out. He did not make any such answer. I 
submit to you now whether the new state of the case has not induced 
the Judge to sheer away from his original ground. [Applause.] 
Would not this be the impression of every fair-minded man? 

I hold that the proposition that slavery cannot enter a new country 
without police regulations is historically false. It is not true at all. 



244 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

I hold that the history of this country shows that the institution of 
slavery was originally planted upon this continent without these 
"police regulations" which the Judge now thinks necessary for the 
actual establishment of it. Not only so, but is there not another fact : 
how came this Dred Scott decision to be made? It was made upon 
the case of a negro being taken and actually held in slavery in Min- 
nesota Territory, claiming his freedom because the Act of Congress 
prohibited his being so held there. Will the Judge pretend that Dred 
Scott was not held there ivithout police regulations? There is at least 
one matter of record as to his having been held in slavery in the 
Territory, not only without police regulations, but in the teeth of 
Congressional legislation supposed to be valid at the time. This 
shows that there is vigor enough in slavery to plant itself in a new 
country even against unfriendly legislation. It takes not only law, 
but the enforcement of law to keep it out. That is the history of this 
countiy upon the subject. 

I wish to ask one other question. It being understood that the 
Constitution of the United States guarantees property in slaves in the 
Territories, if there is any infringement of the right of that property, 
would not the United States courts, organized for the government of 
the Territory, apply such remedy as might be necessary in that case? 
It is a maxim held by the courts that there is no wrong without its 
remedy; and the courts have a remedy for whatever is acknowledged 
and treated as a wrong. 

Again : I will ask you, my friends, if you were elected members of 
the Legislature, what would be the first thing you would have to do 
before entering upon your duties? Swear to support the Constitution 
of the United States. Suppose you believe, as Judge Douglas does, that 
the Constitution of the United States guarantees to your neighbor the 
right to hold slaves in that Territory ; that they are his property : how 
can you clear your oaths unless you give him such legislation as is 
necessary to enable him to enjoy that property? What do you under- 
stand by supporting the Constitution of a State, or of the United 
States? Is it not to give such constitutional helps to the rights estab- 
lished by that Constitution as may be practically needed? Can you, 
if you swear to support the Constitution, and believe that the Con- 
stitution estabhshes a right, clear your oath, without giving it support? 
Do you support the Constitution if, knowing or believing there is a 
right established under it which needs specific legislation, you with- 



LINCOLN AT JONESBORO 245 

hold that legislation? Do you not violate and disregard your oath? 
I can conceive of nothing plainer in the world. There can be nothing 
in the words "support the Constitution, " if you may run counter to it 
by refusing support to any right established under the Constitution. 
And what I say here will hold with still more force against the Judge's 
doctrine of "unfriendly legislation. " How could you, having sworn 
to support the Constitution, and believing it guaranteed the right to 
hold slaves in the Territories, assist in legislation intended to defeat 
that right? That would be violating your own view of the Constitution 
Not only so, but if you were to do so, how long would it take the 
courts to hold your votes unconstitutional and void? Not a moment. 

Lastly, I would ask : Is not Congress itself under obligation to give 
legislative support to any right that is established under the United 
States Constitution? I repeat the question: Is not Congress itself 
bound to give legislative support to any right that is established in the 
United States Constitution? A member of Congress swears to support 
the Constitution of the United States ; and if he sees a right established 
by that Constitution which needs specific legislative protection, can he 
clear his oath without giving that protection? Let me ask you why 
many of us who are opposed to slavery upon principle give our ac- 
quiescence to a Fugitive-Slave law? Why do we hold ourselves under 
obligations to pass such law, and abide by it when it is passed? 
Because the Constitution makes provision that the owners of slaves 
shall have the right to reclaim them. It gives the right to reclaim 
slaves; and that right is, as Judge Douglas says, a barren right, unless 
there is legislation that will enforce it. 

The mere declaration, "No person held to service or labor in one 
State under the laws thereof, escaping into another, shall in conse- 
quence of any law or regulation therein be discharged from such ser- 
vice or labor, but shall be delivered up on claim of the party to whom 
such service or labor may be due," is powerless without specific 
legislation to enforce it. Now, on what ground would a member of 
Congress who is opposed to slavery in the abstract, vote for a Fugitive- 
Slave law, as I would deem it my duty to do? Because there is a 
constitutional right which needs legislation to enforce it. And al- 
though it is distasteful to me, I have sworn to support the Constitu- 
tion; and having so sworn, I cannot conceive that I do support it if I 
withhold from that right any necessary legislation to make it practical. 
—9 



246 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

And if that is true in regard to a Fugitive-Slave law, is the right to 
have fugitive slaves reclaimed any better fixed in the Constitution 
than the right to hold slaves in the Territories? For this decision is a 
just exposition of the Constitution, as Judge Douglas thinks. Is the 
one right any better than the other? Is there any man who, while a 
member of Congress, would give support to the one any more than 
the other? If I wished to refuse to give legislative support to slave 
property in the Territories, if a member of Congress, I could not do it, 
holding the view that the Constitution establishes that right. If I 
did it at all, it would be because I deny that this decision properly 
construes the Constitution. But if I acknowledge, with Judge Doug- 
las, that this decision properly construes the Constitution, I cannot 
conceive that I would be less than a perjured man if I should refuse in 
Congress to give such protection to that property as in its nature it 
needed. 

At the end of what I have said here I propose to give the Judge my 
fifth interrogatory, which he may take and answer at his leisure. My 
fifth interrogatory is this : — 

If the slaveholding citizens of a United States Territory should need 
and demand Congressional legislation for the protection of their slave 
property in such Territory, would you, as a member of Congress, vote 
for or against such legislation? 

Judge Douglas. — Will you repeat that? I want to answer that 
question. 

Mr. Lincoln. — If the slaveholding citizens of a United States Terri- 
tory should need and demand Congressional legislation for the pro- 
tection of their slave property in such Territory, would you, as a 
member of Congress, vote for or against such legislation? 

I am aware that in some of the speeches Judge Douglas has made 
he has spoken as if he did not know or think that the Supreme Court 
had decided that a Territorial legislature cannot exclude slavery. Pre- 
cisely what the Judge would say upon the subject, — whether he would 
say definitely that he does not understand they have so decided, or 
whether he would say he does understand that the court have so 
decided, — I do not know; but I know that in his speech at Springfield 
he spoke of it as a thing they had not decided yet; and in his answer 
to me at Freeport, he spoke of it, so far, again, as I can comprehend it, 
as a thing that had not yet been decided. 

Now, I hold that if the Judge does entertain that view, I think that^ 

^Omits "that." 



LINCOLN AT JONESBORO 247 

he is not mistaken in so far as it can be said that the court has not de- 
cided anything save the mere question of jurisdiction. I know the 
legal arguments that can be made, — that after a court has decided 
that it cannot take jurisdiction in-^ a case, it then has decided all that 
is before it, and that is the end of it. A plausible argument can be 
made in favor of that proposition ; but I know that Judge Douglas has 
said in one of his speeches that the court went forward, like honest men 
as they were, and decided all the points in the case. If any points 
are really extra-judicially decided because not necessarily before them, 
then this one as to the power of the Territorial legislature to exclude 
slavery is one of them, as also the one that the Missouri Compromise 
was null and void. They are both extra-judicial, or neither is, accor- 
ding as the court held that they had no jurisdiction in the case be- 
tween the parties, because of want of capacity of one party to maintain 
a suit in that court. 

I want, if I have sufficient time, to show that the court did pass its 
opinion; but that is the only thing actually done in the case. If they 
did not decide, they showed what they were ready to decide whenever 
the matter was before them. What is that opinion? After having 
argued that Congress had no power to pass a law excluding slavery 
from a United States Territory, they then used language to this effect : 
That inasmuch as Congress itself could not exercise such a power, it 
followed as a matter of course that it could not authorize a Territorial 
government to exercise it; for the Territorial legislature can do no 
more than Congress could do. Thus it expressed its opinion emphati- 
cally against the power of a Territorial legislature to exclude slavery, 
leaving us in just as little doubt on that point as upon any other point 
they really decided. 

Now, my fellow-citizens, I will detain you only a little while longer; 
my time is nearly^ out. I find a report of a speech made by Judge 
Douglas at Joliet, since we last met at Freeport, — published, I believe, 
in the Missouri Republican, — on the 9th of this month, in which Judge 
Douglas says: — 

" You know at Ottawa I read this platform, and asked him if he concurred 
in each and all of the principles set forth in it. He would not answer these 
questions. At last I said frankly, I wish you to answer them, because when I 
get them up here where the color of your principles are^ a little darker than in 

'Reads: "of" for "in." 

'Inserts, "very" before "nearly." 

'Reads: "is" for "are." 



248 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Egypt, I intend to trot you down to Jonesboro. The very notice that I was 
going to take him down to Egypt made him tremble in the knees so that he 
had to be carried from the platform. He laid up seven days, and in the mean- 
time held a consultation with his political physicians; they had Lovejoy and 
Farnsworth and all the leaders of the Abolition party; they consulted it all 
over, and at last Lincoln came to the conclusion that he would answer ; so he 
came up to Freeport last Friday. " 

Now, that statement altogether furnishes a subject for philosophical 
contemplation. [Laughter.] I have been treating it in that way, and 
I have really come to the conclusion that I can explain it in no other 
way than by believing the Judge is crazy. [Renewed laughter.] If he 
was in his right mind, I cannot conceive how he would have risked 
disgusting the four or five thousand of his own friends who stood there, 
and knew, as to my having been carried from the platform, that there 
was not a word of truth in it. 

Judge Douglas. — Didn't they carry you off? 

Mr. Lincoln. — There! that question illustrates the character of this 
man Douglas exactly. He smiles now, and says, " Didn't they carrj^ 
you off? " But he said then " he had to he carried off; " and he said it to 
convince the country that he had so completely broken me down by 
his speech that I had to be carried away. Now he seeks to dodge it, 
and asks, " Didn't they carry you off? " Yes, they did. But Judge 
Douglas ivhy didn't you tell the truth? [Great laughter and cheers.] I 
would like to know why you didn't tell the truth about it. [Continued 
laughter.] And then again, " He laid up seven days. " He puts this 
in print for the people of the country to read as a serious document. 
I think if he had been in his sober senses he would not have risked that 
barefacedness in the presence of thousands of his own friends, who 
knew that I made speeches within six of the seven days at Henry, 
Marshall County; Augusta, Hancock Countj'^; and Macomb, McDon- 
ough County ; including all the necessary travel to meet him again at 
Freeport at the end of the six days. Now, I say there is no charitable 
way to look at that statement, except to conclude that he is actually 
crazy. [Laughter.] 

There is another thing in that statement that alarmed me very 
greatly as he states it, — that he was going to " trot me down to Egypt." 
Thereby he would have you infer that I would not come down to 
Egypt unless he forced me, — that I could not be got here, unless he, 
giant-like, had hauled me down here. [Laughter.] That statement 



DOUGLAS AT JONESBORO 249 

he makes, too, in the teeth of the knowledge that I had made the 
stipulation to come down here, and that he himself had been very reluc- 
tant to enter into that stipulation. [Cheers and laughter.] More than 
all this, Judge Douglas, when he made that statement, must have 
been crazy, and wholly out of his sober senses, or else he would have 
known that when he got me down here, that promise — that windy 
promise — of his powers to annihilate me, wouldn't amount to any- 
thing. Now, how little do I look like being carried away trembling? 
Let the Judge go on; and after he is done with his half hour, I want 
you all, if I can't go home myself to let me stay and rot here; and if 
anything happens to the Judge, if I cannot carry him to the hotel and 
put him to bed, let me stay here and rot. [Great laughter.] 

I say, then, there is something extraordinary in this statement. I 
ask you if you know any other living man who would make such a 
statement? [Cries of "No, no;" "Yes, yes."] I will ask my friend 
Casey over there if he would do such a thing? [Casey dropped his 
head and said nothing.] Would he send that out, and have his men 
take it as the truth? Did the Judge talk of trotting me down to Egypt 
to scare me to death? Why, I know this people better than he does. 
I was raised just a little east of here. I am a part of this people. But 
the Judge was raised further north, and perhaps he has some horrid 
idea of what this people might be induced to do. [Roars of laughter 
and cheers.] But really I have talked about this matter perhaps 
longer than I ought, for it is no great thing; and yet the smallest are 
often the most difficult things to deal with. The Judge has set about 
seriously trying to make the impression that when we meet at different 
places I am literally in his clutches — that I am a poor, helpless, 
decrepit mouse, and that I can do nothing at all. This is one of the 
ways he has taken to create that impression. I don't know any other 
way to meet it, except this. I don't want to quarrel with him, — to 
call him a liar; but when I come square up to him I don't know what 
else to call him, if I must tell the truth out. [Cheers and laughter.] 
I want to be at peace, and reserve all my fighting powers for necessary 
occasions. My time, now, is nearly out, and I give up the trifle that 
is left to the Judge, to let him set my knees trembling again, if he can. 



Mr. Douglas's Rejoinder 

Mr. Douglas on again taking the stand was greeted with thundering 
applause. He said: 



250 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

My friends, while I am very grateful to you for the enthusiasm 
which you show for me, I will say in all candor, that your quietness will 
be much more agreeable than your applause, inasmuch as you deprive 
me of some part of my time whenever you cheer. ["All right, go 
ahead, we won't interrupt," etc.] 

I will commence where Mr. Lincoln left off, and make a remark upon 
this serious complaint of his about my speech at Joliet. I did say 
there in a playful manner that when I put these questions to Mr. 
Lincoln at Ottawa he failed to answer, and that he trembled and had 
to be carried off the stand, and required seven days to get up his reply. 
[Laughter.] That he did not walk off from that stand he will not deny. 
That when the crowd went away from the stand with me, a few 
persons carried him home on their shoulders and laid him down he 
will admit. [Shouts of laughter.] I wish to say to you that when- 
ever I degrade my friends and myself by allowing them to carry me 
on their backs along through the public streets, when I am able to 
walk, I am willing to be deemed crazy ["All right, Douglas, " laughter 
and applause. Lincoln chewing his nails in a rage in a back corner.] 

I did not say whether I beat him or he beat me in the argument. It 
is true I put these questions to him, and I put them, not as mere idle 
questions, but showed that I based them upon the creed of the Black 
Republican party as declared by their conventions in that portion of 
the State which he depends upon to elect him, and desired to know 
whether he indorsed that creed. He would not answer. When I 
reminded him that I intended bringing him into Egypt and renewing 
my questions if he refused to answer, he then consulted, and did get up 
his answers one week after, — answers which I may refer to in a few 
minutes, and show you how equivocal they are. My object was to 
make him avow whether or not he stood by the platform of his party ; 
the resolutions I then read, and upon which I based my questions, had 
been adopted by his party in the Galena Congressional District, and 
the Chicago and Bloomington Congressional Districts, composing a 
large majority of the counties in this State that give Republican or 
Abolition majorities. Mr. Lincoln cannot and will not deny that the 
doctrines laid down in these resolutions were in substance put forth in 
Lovejoy's resolutions, which were voted for by a majority of his party, 
some of them, if not all, receiving the support of every man of his 
party. Hence, I laid a foundation for my questions to him before I 
asked him whether that was or was not the platform of his party. 



DOUGLAS AT JONESBORO 251 

He says that he answered my questions. One of them was whether 
he would vote to admit any more Slave States into the Union. The 
creed of the Republican party as set forth in the resolutions of their 
various conventions was, that they would under no circumstances vote 
to admit another Slave State. It was put forth in the Lovejoy resolu- 
tions in the Legislature; it was put forth and passed in a majority of 
all the counties of this State which give Abolition or Republican ma- 
jorities, or elect members to the Legislature of that school of politics. 
I had a right to know whether he would vote for or against the admis- 
sion of another Slave State, in the event the people wanted it. He 
first answered that he was not pledged on the subject, and then said : — 

" In regard to the other question, of whether I am pledged to the admission 
of any more Slave States into the Union, I state to you very frankly that I 
would be exceedingly sorry ever to be put in the position of having to pass on 
that question. [" No doubt, — " and laughter. Mr. Lincoln looks savagely into 
the crowd for the man who said " no doubt. "] I should be exceedingly glad to 
know that there would never be another Slave State admitted into the Union; 
but I must add that if slavery shall be kept out of the Territories during the 
Territorial existence of any one given Territory, and then the people, having 
a fair chance and clean field when they come to adopt a Constitution, do such 
an extraordinary thing as adopt a slave constitution, uninfluenced by the 
actual presence of the institution among them, I see no alternative, if we own 
the country, but to admit them into the Union. " 

Now analyze that answer. In the first place, he says he would be 
exceedingly sorry to be put in a position where he would have to vote 
on the question of the admission of a Slave State. Why is he a candi- 
date for the Senate if he would be sorry to be put in that position? I 
trust the people of Illinois will not put him in a position which he 
would be so sorry to occupy. [''There's no danger, " etc.] The next 
position he takes is that he would be glad to know that there would 
never be another Slave State, yet, in certain contingencies, he might 
have to vote for one. What is that contingency? " If Congress keeps 
slavery out by law while it is a Territory, and then the people should 
have a fair chance and should adopt slavery, uninfluenced by the 
presence of the institution. " he supposed he would have to admit 
the State. 

Suppose Congress should not keep slavery out during their Terri- 
torial existence, then how would he vote when the people applied for 
admission into the Union with a slave constitution? That he does 
not answer; and that is the condition of every Territory we have now 
got. Slavery is not kept out of Kansas by act of Congress; and when 



252 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

I put the question to Mr. Lincoln, whether he will vote for the admis- 
sion with or without slavery, as her people may desire, he will not 
answer, and you have not got an answer from him. In Nebraska, 
slavery is not prohibited by Act of Congress, but the people are 
allowed, under the Nebraska bill, to do as they please on the subject; 
and when I ask him whether he will vote to admit Nebraska with a 
slave constitution if her people desire it, he will not answer. So with 
New Mexico, Washington Territory, Arizjpna, and the four new States 
to be admitted from Texas. 

You cannot get an answer from him to these questions. His answer 
only applies to a given case, to a condition, — things which he knows 
do not exist in any one Territory in the Union. He tries to give you 
to understand that he would allow the people to do as they please, and 
yet he dodges the question as to every Territory in the Union. I now 
ask why cannot Mr. Lincoln answer to each of these Territories? He 
has not done it, and he will not do it. The Abolitionists up north 
understand that this answer is made with a view of not committing 
himself on any one Territory now in existence. It is so understood 
there, and you cannot expect an answer from him on a case that ap- 
plies to any one Territory, or applies to the new States which by com- 
pact we are pledged to admit out of Texas, when they have the 
requisite population and desire admission. I submit to you whether 
he has made a frank answer, so that you can tell how he would vote 
in any one of these cases. " He would be sorry to be put in the posi- 
tion. " Why would he be sorry to be put in this position if his duty 
required him to give the vote? If the people of a Territory ought to 
be permitted to come into the Union as a State, with Slavery or with- 
out it, as they pleased, why not give the vote admitting them cheer- 
fully? If in his opinion they ought not to come in with slavery, even 
if they wanted to, why not say that he would cheerfully vote against 
their admission? His intimation is that conscience would not let 
him vote " No, " and he would be sorry to do that which his conscience 
would compel him to do as an honest man. [Laughter and cheers.] 

In regard to the contract, or bargain, between Trumbull, the Abo- 
litionists, and him, which he denies, I wish to say that the charge can 
be proved by notorious historical facts. Trumbull, Lovejoy, Gid- 
dings, Fred Douglass, Hale, and Banks were traveling the State at 
that time, making speeches on the same side and in the same cause 
with him. He contents himself with the simple denial that no such 



DOUGLAS AT JONESBORO 253 

thing occurred. Does he deny that he, and Trumbull, and Breese, 
and Giddings, and Chase, and Fred Douglass, and Lovejoy, and all 
those Abolitionists and deserters from the Democratic party did make 
speeches all over this State in the same common cause? Does he 
deny that Jim Matheny was then, and is now, his confidential friend, 
and does he deny that Matheny made the charge of the bargain and 
fraud in his own language, as I have read it from his printed speech? 
Matheny spoke of his own personal knowledge of that bargain existing 
between Lincoln, Trumbull, and the Abolitionists. He still remains 
Lincoln's confidential friend, and is now a candidate for Congress, and 
is canvassing the Springfield District for Lincoln. I assert that I can 
prove the charge to be true in detail if I can ever get it where I can 
summon and compel the attendance of witnesses. I have the state- 
ment of another man to the same effect as that made by Matheny, 
which I am not permitted to use yet; but Jim Matheny is a good 
witness on that point, and then^ the history of the country is conclu- 
sive upon it. That Lincoln up to that time had been a Whig, and 
then undertook to Abolitionize the Whigs and bring them into the 
Abolition camp, is beyond denial; that Trumbull up to that time had 
been a Democrat, and deserted, and undertook to Abolitionize the 
Democracy, and take them into the Abolition camp, is beyond denial; 
that they are both now active, leading, distinguished members of this 
Abolition Republican party in full communion, is a fact that cannot 
be questioned or denied. 

But Lincoln is not willing to be responsible for the creed of his party. 
He complains because I hold him responsible ; and in order to avoid the 
issue, he attempts to show that individuals in the Democratic party, 
many years ago, expressed Abolition sentiments. It is true that Tom 
Campbell, when a candidate for Congress in 1850, published the letter 
which Lincoln read. When I asked Lincoln for the date of that letter^ 
he could not give it. The date of the letter has been suppressed by 
other speakers who have used it, though I take it for granted that 
Lincoln did not know the date. If he will take the trouble to examme, 
he will find that the letter was published only two days before the 
election, and was never seen until after it, except in one county, 
Tom Campbell would have been beat to. death by the Democratic 
party if that letter had been made public in his district. As to 
Molony, it is true he uttered sentiments of the kind referred to by Mr. 

1 Omits "then." 



254 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Lincoln, and the best Democrats would not vote for him for that 
reason. I returned from Washington after the passage of the Com- 
promise Measures in 1850, and when I found Molony running under ^ 
Wentworth's tutelage and on his platform, I denounced him, and 
declared that he was no Democrat. 

In my speech at Chicago, just before the election that year, I went 
before the infuriated people of that city and vindicated the Compro- 
mise Measures of 1850. Remember the city council had passed reso- 
lutions nullifying Acts of Congress and instructing the police to with- 
hold their assistance from the execution of the laws; and as I was the 
only man in the city of Chicago who was responsible for the passage 
of the Compromise Measures, I went before the crowd, justified each 
and every one of those measures; and let it be said, to the eternal 
honor of the people of Chicago, that when they were convinced by my 
exposition of those measures that they were right, and they had done 
wrong in opposing them, they repealed their nullifying resolutions, 
and declared that they would acquiesce in and support the laws of the 
land. These facts are well known, and Mr. Lincoln can only get up 
individual instances, dating back to 1849-'50, which are contradicted 
by the whole tenor of the Democratic creed. 

But Mr. Lincoln does not want to be held responsible for the Black 
Republican doctrine of no more Slave States. Famsworth is the 
candidate of his party to-day in the Chicago District, and he made a 
speech in the last Congress in which he called upon God to palsy his 
right arm if he ever voted for the admission of another Slave State, 
whether the people wanted it or not. Lovejoy is making speeches all 
over the State for Lincoln now, and taking ground against any more 
Slave States. Washburne, the Black Republican candidate for Con- 
gress in the Galena District, is making speeches in favor of this same 
Abolition platform declaring no more Slave States. Why are men 
running for Congress in the northern districts, and taking that Abo- 
lition platform for their guide, when Mr. Lincoln does not want to be 
held to it down here in Egypt and in the center of the State, and 
objects to it so as to get votes here? [" He can't get any. "] Let me 
tell Mr. Lincohi that his party in the northern part of the State hold 
to that Abolition platform, and that if they do not in the south and 
in the center, they present the extraordinary spectacle of a "house 
divided against itself," and hence, ''cannot stand." [''Hurrah."] 

I Inserts "John." 



DOUGLAS AT JONESBORO 255 

I now'bring down upon him the vengeance of his own scriptural 
quotation, and give it a more appropriate application than he did, 
when I say to him that his party, Abolition in one end of the State, 
and_opposed to it in the other, is a house divided against itself, and 
cannot stand, and ought not to stand, for it attempts to cheat the 
American people out of their votes by disguising its sentiments. 
[Cheers.] 

Mr. Lincoln attempts to cover up and get over his Abolitionism by 
telling you that he was raised a little east of you, [laughter] beyond 
the Wabash in Indiana, and he thinks that makes a mighty sound and 
good man of him on all these questions. I do not know that the place 
where a man is bom or raised has much to do with his political prin- 
ciples. The worst Abolitionists I have ever known in Illinois have 
been men who have sold their slaves in Alabama and Kentucky, and 
have come here and turned Abolitionists whilst spending the money 
got for the negroes they sold; ["that's so, " and laughter] and I do not 
know that an Abolitionist from Indiana or Kentucky ought to have 
any more credit because he was bom and raised among slaveholders. 
["Not a bit," "not as much," etc.] I do not know that a native of 
Kentucky is more excusable because, raised among slaves, his father 
and mother having owned slaves, he comes to Illinois, turns Aboli- 
tionist, and slanders the graves of his father and mother, and breathes 
curses upon the institutions under which he was born, and his father 
and mother bred. 

True, I was not born out west here. I was born away down in 
Yankee land, [" good "] I was born in a valley in Vermont, [" all right"] 
with the high mountains around me. I love the old green mountains 
and valleys of Vermont where I was born, and where I played in my 
childhood. I went up to visit them some seven or eight years ago, for 
the first time for twenty odd years. When I got there they treated me 
very kindly. They invited me to the Commencement of their college, 
placed me on the seats with their distinguished guests, and conferred 
upon me the degree of LL.D. in Latin (doctor of laws), — the same as 
they did^ Old Hickory, at Cambridge, many years ago; and I give you 
my word and honor I understood just as much of the Latin as he did. 
[Laughter.] When they got through conferring the honorary degree, 
they called upon me for a speech; and I got up, with my heart full and 
swelling with gratitude for their kindness, and I said to them, " My 

^Inserts "on." 



256 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

friends, Vermont is the most glorious spot on the face of this globe for 
a man to be bom in, provided he emigrates when he is veiy young. " 
[Uproarious shouts of laughter.] 

I emigrated when I was very young. I came out here when I was 
a boy, and I found my mind liberalized, and my opinions enlarged, 
when I got on these broad prairies, with only the heavens to bound my 
vision, instead of having them circumscribed by the little narrow 
ridges that surrounded the valley where I was born. But I discard 
all flings at-*- the land where a man was born. I wish to be judged by 
my principles, by those great public measures and constitutional 
principles upon which the peace, the happiness, and the pei-petuity of 
this Republic now rest. 

Mr. Lincoln has framed another question, propounded it to me, and 
desired my answer. As I have said before, I did not put a question to 
him that I did not first lay a foundation for, by showing that it was a 
part of the platform of the party whose votes he is now seeking; adopted 
in a majority of the counties where he now hopes to get a majority; 
and supported by the candidates of his party now running in those 
counties. But I will answer his question. It is as follows: " If the 
slaveholding citizens of a United States Territory should need and 
demand Congressional legislation for the protection of their slave 
property in such Territory, would you, as a member of Congress, vote 
for or against such legislation? " I answer him that it is a fundamen- 
tal article in the Democratic creed that there should be non-interfer- 
ence and non-intervention by Congress with slavery in the States or 
Territories. [Immense cheering.] Mr. Lincoln could have found an 
answer to his question in the Cincinnati platform, if he had desired it. 
The Democratic party have always stood by that great principle of 
non-interference and non-intervention by Congress with slavery in the 
States and Territories alike, and I stand on that platform now. [Cheer 
after cheer was here given for Douglas.] 

Now, I desire to call your attention to the fact that Lincoln did not 
define his own position in his own question. [" He can't; it's too far 
South," and laughter.] How does he stand on that question? He 
put the question to me at Freeport whether or not I would vote to 
admit Kansas into the Union before she had 93,420 inhabitants. I 
answered him at once that, it having been decided that Kansas had 
now population enough for a Slave State, she had population enough 
for a Free State. ["Good; that's it;" and cheers.] 

iReads: "of" for "at." 



DOUGLAS AT JONESBORO 257 

I answered the question unequivocally; and then I asked him 
whether he would vote for or against the admission of Kansas before 
she had 93,420 inhabitants, and he would not answer me. To-day he 
has called attention to the fact that, in his opinion, my answer on that 
question was not quite plain enough, and yet he has not answered it 
himself. [Great laughter.] He now puts a question in relation to 
Congressional interference in the Territories to me. I answer him 
direct, and yet he has not answered the question himself. I ask you 
whether a man has any right, in common decency, to put questions in 
these public discussions, to his opponent, which he will not answer 
himself, when they are pressed home to him. I have asked him three 
times whether he would vote to admit Kansas whenever the people 
applied with a constitution of their own making and their own adop- 
tion, under circumstances that were fair, just, and unexceptionable; 
but I cannot get an answer from him. Nor will he answer the ques- 
tion which he put to me, and which I have just answered in relation 
to Congressional interference in the Territories, by making a slave 
code there. 

It is true that he goes on to answer the question by arguing that 
under the decision of the Supreme Court it is the duty of a man to vote 
for a slave code in the Territories. He says that it is his duty, under 
the decision that the court has made; and if he believes in that decision 
he would be a perjured man if he did not give the vote. I want to 
know whether he is not bound to a decision which is contrary to his 
opinions just as much as to one in accordance with his opinions. 
["Certainly."] If the decision of the Supreme Court, the tribunal 
created by the Constitution to decide the question, is final and binding, 
is he not bound by it just as strongly as if he was for it instead of 
against it originally Is every man in this land allowed to resist decis- 
ions he does not like, and only support those that meet his approval? 
What are important courts worth, unless their decisions are binding 
on all good citizens? It is the fundamental principle of the judiciary 
that its decisions are final. It is created for that purpose; so that 
when you cannot agree among yourselves on a disputed point, you 
appeal to the judicial tribunal, which steps in and decides for you; and 
that decision is then binding on every good citizen. It is the law of 
the land just as much with Mr. Lincoln against it as for it. 

And yet he says that if that decision is binding, he is a perjured man 
if he does not vote for a slave code in the different Territories of this 



258 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Union. Well, if you [turning to Mr. Lincoln] are not going to resist 
the decision; if you obey it, and do not intend to array mob law against 
the constituted authorities; then, according to your own statement, 
you will be a perjured man if you do not vote to establish slavery in 
these Territories. My doctrine is, that even taking Mr. Lincoln's view 
that the decision recognizes the right of a man to carry his slaves into 
the Territories of the United States if he pleases, yet after he gets there 
he needs affirmative law to make that right of any value. The same 
doctrine not only applies to slave property, but all other kinds of 
property. Chief Justice Taney places it upon the ground that slave 
property is on an equal footing with other property. Suppose one of 
your merchants should move to Kansas and open a liquor store: he 
has a right to take groceries and liquors there ; but the mode of selling 
them, and the circumstances under which they shall be sold, and all 
the remedies, must be prescribed by local legislation; and if that is un- 
friendly, it will drive him out just as effectually as if there was a con- 
stitutional provision against the sale of liquor. So the absence of local 
legislation to encourage and support slave property in a Territory 
excludes it practically just as effectually as if there was a positive 
constitutional provision against it. 

Hence, I assert that under the Dred Scott decision you cannot main- 
tain slavery a day in a Territory where there is an unwilling people and 
unfriendly legislation. If the people are opposed to it, our right is a 
barren, worthless, useless right; and if they are for it, they will support 
and encourage it. We come right back, therefore, to the practical 
question, If the people of a Territory want slavery, they will have it; 
and if they do not want it, you cannot force it on them. And this is 
the practical question, the great principle, upon which our institutions 
rest. [" That's the doctrine. "] I am willing to take the decision of 
the Supreme Court as it was pronounced by that august tribunal, with- 
out stopping to inquire whether I would have decided that way or not. 
I have had many a decision made against me on questions of law which 
I did not like, but I was bound by them just as much as if I had had a 
hand in making them and approved them. Did you ever see a lawyer 
or a client lose his case that he approved the decision of the court? 
They always think the decision unjust when it is given against them. 
In a government of laws, like ours, we must sustain the Constitution 
as our fathers made it, and maintain the rights of the States as they 



THE JONESBORO DEBATE 259 

are guaranteed under the Constitution, and then we will have peace 
and harmony between the different States and sections of this glorious 
Union. [Prolonged cheering.] 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, September 17, 1858] 

GREAT DEBATE BETWEEN LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 

AT JONESBORO 



Fourteen Hundred Persons Present.— Doug-las Rehearses the Same 
Old Speech.— He "Comes to His Milk" Voluntarily, and Old Abe 
Takes What He Has to Spare.— Lincoln Pulverizes His Freeport 
Answers on the Dred Scott Decision.— Doug-las Impeaches the 
Democracy of His Friends Thomas Campbell and R. S. Malony.— 
Was He Drunk When He Made His Joliet Speech or was He Only 
"Playful?"— Concluding- Speeches by Hon. "For-God's-Sake Linder" 
and Hon. John Doug-herty.— Verbatim Report of Doug-las's Speech. 
Lincoln's Reply and Doug-las's Rejoinder. 

Egypt took the promised novelty of Douglas, "bringing Old Abe 
to his milk, " very coolly, considering the dog-day temperature that 
prevails down that way. Until ten o'clock on Wednesday the only 
evidence of the third great debate, in old Jonesboro, was a procession 
calling itself the Johnson County delegation, consisting of two yoke 
of steers and a banner inscribed '' Stephen A. Douglas, " turned bottom 
upwards. Nothing else unusual transpired during the forenoon until 
the arrival of two special trains — one from Centralia and the other 
from Cairo — which came in about the same time. The former con- 
sisted of four cars filled with attendants on the State Fair. The latter 
brought Mr. Douglas, his brass cannon, and a band of music from some 
unknown point, and five or six car-loads of passengers from Cairo, 
Mound City, Kentucky and Missouri. Arrived at Anna (Jonesboro 
Station) three cheers were not given — in default of which the brass 
cannon banged away spitefully. Mr. Douglas entered a carriage in a 
quiet and orderly manner, and was driven over to old Jonesboro, 
about a mile distant. Mr. Lincoln had arrived in town on the evening 
of the preceding day. 

Shortly before two o'clock the people entered the Fair grounds, a 
little north of the town, where the speaking stand had been erected. 
The inevitable brass cannon was there before them, filling the yard 
with a loud noise and a bad smell. Several banners were brought up 



260 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

on the Douglas train from Cairo, and distributed around the stand— 
the principle one inscribed with a paraphrase from Holy Writ : 
MY SON, IF BOLTERS ENTICE THEE, 
CONSENT THOU NOT. 

This was claimed by the Buchanan men as having been stolen from 
them at a recent county convention. 

The entire audience on the ground numbered between fourteen and 
fifteen hundred by actual count. To those who do not know the loca- 
tion of Jonesboro, it will be sufficient to say that it is the county seat of 
Union Co., thirty-three miles north of Cairo, about three hundred and 
fifty-seven miles south of Chicago. It is very pleasantly and health- 
fully situated among the hills towards the confluence of the Ohio and 
Mississippi Rivers, and is about four hundred feet above high water 
mark. 

The Jonesboro audience was by far the smallest that has yet assem- 
bled to hear either of the speakers. There were only a few over four- 
teen hundred, including the six car-loads brought up by Douglas with 
his brass cannon and band of music from Cairo. Four car-loads of 
volunteers came down from Centralia. 

[Chicago Times, September 17, 1858] 

THE CAMPAIGN.-DOUGLAS AT JONESBORO 



Lincoln in Egypt.— Lincoln's Friends Entlmsiastic— They Give Him 
Three Cheers Each. Lincoln "Trotted Out." His "Points" Dis- 
played. His Wind Fails Him.— Doug-herty Supplies His Place.— 
The Allies Working- Together.— Doug-las Triumphs over All! 

On Wednesday, Judge Douglas having been escorted to Jonesboro 
by two hundred and more of his personal friends, the joint discussion 
took place at a grove on the edge of the town. Delegations of Demo- 
crats from all the counties of lower Illinois were present, with banners 
and flags of various descriptions. Notwithstanding the fact that 
thousands of farmers and others were engaged elsewhere, at the State 
Fair, the attendance was very large. The number may be safely 
estimated at five thousand persons, in which vast body of men there 
were probably about sixty Republicans and fifteen Danites. The 
rest of the crowd were Democrats. In Southern Illinois the sup- 
porters of Lincoln and negro equality are in the proportion of twelve to 
a thousand for Douglas and democracy. While the Danites in Dough- 



THE JONESBORO DEBATE 261 

erty's own town of Jonesboro do not exceed altogether twenty-five, 
and in the surrounding counties do not average five to a county. 

The enthusiasm of the people throughout Middle, Eastern, 
Western, and Southern Illinois in behalf of Douglas is intense; there 
is but one sentiment, one feeling, and there is but one purpose, which 
purpose is to re-elect him to the Senate where he has so ably and vig- 
orously defended the constitution and the Union, has so long and 
successfully served Illinois, and has won for himself and the State such 
imperishable renown. 

[New York Evening Post, September 22, 1858] 
(Special Correspondence of the Evening Post.) 

Jonesboro', III., September 15, 1858 
The third field-day between Lincoln and Douglas has just closed at 
this town. It is an ancient village in the heart of Egypt, among hills 
and ravines, and invested with forest as the soil itself. It is thirty 
miles from Cairo and three hundred miles from Chicago. Illinois is no 
longer the " Prairie state. " We have come to it through rocky depths 
and cliff cuttings ; through forests primeval ; through sharp and broken 
bluffs, altogether like in style, through (from diversity of timber) not 
in appearance, to the region adjacent to the Erie Railroad, where it 
passes through Western New York. 

Jonesboro' is a mile and a half from the railroad. The station is 
called " Anna, " and is as large as the town itself. The Station is 
Republican; the town is democratic. The land sales of the Illinois 
Central Railroad, by opening the country to the advent of settlers, 
have introduced the men of the East, who bring certain uncomfortable 
and antagonistical political maxims, and thus the time-honored dark- 
ness of Egypt is made to fade away before the approach of middle 
state and New England ideas. Let these land sales go on, and a 
change will take place in the political physiognomy of Southern 
Illinois. All things suffer " a sea change, " and already the alterative 
influence of these new ideas is sensibly felt in this section. 

You remember that at Ottawa Mr. Douglas triumphantly informed 
his audience that he should 'Hrot Lincoln down into Egypt," and 
"bring him to his milk," on certain questions propounded to him. 
This classic exercise has just closed. Lincoln has been " trotted out, " 
and Douglas has small boast to make of his enterprise. The meeting, 
which was in a pleasant grove hard by the town, was very small, not 



262 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

over 1,200; and of these, probably a fourth were Republicans, another 
fourth Buchanan men, the rest Douglas men and women. Consider- 
ing the abundant population of Egypt, and its firm faith in Douglas, 
it is very remarkable that so small a turnout appeared. Mr. Lincoln 
came to the ground attended by a few friends. The Senator came 
attended by a band of music and a crowd of admirers, and heralded 
by discharges of that same brass cannon which has already travelled 
so extensively through the state. Mr. Douglas was greeted with 
immense applause on his appearance. He had the opening speech. 
In lang-uage it was almost identical with his Galena speech, and indeed 
with others that he has made. He began by stating that in 1852, and 
prior to 1854, the whig and democratic parties, however they differed 
on other matters, agreed and harmonized on the slavery question. 
Having established this fact, he proceeded to charge upon Lincoln and 
Trumbull a conspiracy to bring whigs and democrats, "bound hand 
and foot, " into the abolition camp. The one to have Shield's place 
in the United States Senate, and the other to have ''my place, if I 
should be so accomodating as to die or resign. " He had very little 
to say in regard to the doctrine of popular sovereignty, but on the 
Dred Scott decision, said he was "content to abide by it, as the 
supreme law of the land, " thus meandering slightly from his Freeport 
position, where this decision was an " abstraction " so far as it inter- 
'fered with the popular sovereignty. 

Mr. Douglas's speech was not marked by his usual ability, and the 
delivery was very bad — a sort of school boy monotone, with an espe- 
cial aplomb on every emphatic syllable. 

Mr. Lincohi arose evidently embarrassed by the apparent uniform 
democratic hue of his audience. A faint cheer was elicited, followed 
by derisive laughter from the Douglas men, and solemn silence from 
the " Danites. " The Lincoln men took courage from this and burst 
into a loud cheer, which for the first time satisfied the statesmen on 
the platform, that matters were not all one way. Mr. Lincoln pro- 
ceeded in his accustomed sincere, earnest and good-humored way 
to present his side of the case. He was a stranger to the audience and 
most of them were his bitter foes, but he won rapidly upon them. 

[Peoria Transcript, September 20, 1858] 

THE JONESBORO DEBATE 

Although the audience in attendance at the Jonesboro debate 
between Lincoln and Douglas was very small compared with the crowd 



THE JONESBORO DEBATE 263 

at Ottawa and Freeport (not more than 1,500 persons being present) 
the debate itself is, in many respects, the most important one yet held. 
Its principle features were the new and powerful arguments introduced 
by Mr. Lincoln in exposing the position of Douglas on the Dred Scott 
decision, and an exhibition of Democratic platforms in Northern Illi- 
nois in 1850-52. As this portion of Mr. Lincoln's speech is highly 
interesting and important, we shall give it to our readers in full. 

Mr. Douglas' opening speech was, from beginning to end, in lan- 
guage and substance, the same that he delivered in Ottawa. He went 
over the old ground of Negro equality, popular sovereignty, the right 
of States, &c. The salient points of his closing speech were an expla- 
nation that when he told his Joliet falsehoods he was only in fun, (leav- 
ing the inference that he was probably drunk,) a nimble bound over 
and dodge under Mr. Lincoln's question as to whether he would or 
would not give the territorial slave holders Congressional protection 
should they demand it, and the closing lampoon of his birthplace to 
the effect that " Vermont is a good State to be born in, provided you 
emigrate when very young" — the same silly anecdote and shameful 
libel that he has used in every speech he has made since the opening of 
the campaign. 

These discussions are resulting in a decided triumph of Mr. Lin- 
coln over his opponent. The dispassionate and able manner in which 
he addressed the people, and the masterly manner in which he upholds 
Republicanism and exposes Democracy, elicits the admiration of the 
whole countr}^ We are more and more convinced of his superiority 
over Mr. Douglas in every respect — as a debater, a statesman and an 
upright and incorruptible man. The resources of his mind are per- 
fectly inexhaustible. No man in the nation has a more intimate 
knowledge of our political affairs, or knows better how to use that 
knowledge effectively. 

[Chicago Journal, September 17, 1858] 

THE DOUGLAS AND LINCOLN DEBATE IN LOWER EGYPT 

JoNESBORo', Sept. 15, 1858 
The first debate in " Egypt, " between Douglas and Lincoln, took 
place here today. As compared with the audiences they had at 
Ottawa and Freeport, the crowd present at this debate was small, and 
lacking in enthusiasm. There were not two thousand people in 
attendance. 



264 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

The extra excursion train from Cairo, for the State Fair at Centralia, 
brought up Senator Douglas and his cannon this evening. We came 
up on the same train, and were surprised that notwithstanding the 
cannon was fired on the arrival at each station, not a solitary cheer 
loas given, nor any sign of enthusiasm manifested, for Douglas, at any 
of the Stations, between Cairo and Jonesboro'. We say we were sur- 
prised at this, for the reason that we have heard so nmch about 
" Egypt " boiling with excitement in favor of the Little Giant. This 
is not true. Like a thousand other things we read in his organs and 
hear his fuglers say, it is bogus. There is no enthusiasm — no excite- 
ment, in this region for Douglas. We say this candidly, and mention 
it only to show that even in this strong " Democratic " section, where 
Douglas has been represented as invulnerable and unassailable, the 
utmost indifference exists regarding him. We are assured by gentle- 
men residing here, that there is a strong probability that the Buch- 
anan Democrats — the adamantine "Nationals" are strongly in the 
ascendant over the Douglas bolters, and that in some localities here- 
away there are even more Lincoln men than Douglas men. Think of 
that! "Egypt" becoming republicanized, or, as Douglasite libellers 
would say, " Abolitionized"\ Jonesboro' itself, the veiy center of 
" Egypt, " is a Republican town ! This shows that the great, patriotic 
and righteous principles of the Republican party, which Mr. Lincoln 
so faithfully represents, and so ably advocates and defends before the 
people, are progressing and finding their way to the popular heart 
even in regions that Republicans have regarded as hopelessly given 
over to the worship of false gods. All that the Egyptians, as well as 
others, require to bring them into the support of Republicanism is to 
have our principles, sentiments and objects fairly and fully explained 
to them, so that they will understand them, and become disabused of 
the false notions regarding the Republican party, which Douglas and 
his blowers have by misrepresentation and falsehood, impressed upon 
them. 

But I must say something about the " reception " Douglas and his 
cannon were honored with here. It was highly amusing, and to the 
Senator himself, evidently a disapointment. When the train arrived 
at the Station, his cannon (he always carries it with him, on an extra 
wood car attached to the train) fired his own salute, and a crowd of 
about a hundred rushed to the cars. He stepped forth, waved his 
hand, and nobody appearing to take any particular notice of him — 
(they are a very cool set of people down here, notwithstanding the hot 



THE JONESBORO DEBATE 265 

weather they are having) — he went to a carriage prepared for him and 
left. There was no cheering — no anything. Bye and bye, three boys 
came along with Douglas banners, and a couple of big men with a big 
American flag, which the Senator brought with him in the train and 
they walked into the middle of the street and halted, expecting " the 
people " to follow them in procession behind Douglas' carriage. But 
"the people" didn't! The three boys and the two big men, with the 
banners and the big flag, then concluded to march, and off they went 
up street, presenting a spectacle that excited the laughter and ridicule 
of "the people. " It being customary for some journalists to ridicule 
and burlesque the men and the meetings of their opponents, however 
unjustly, some may think that this was written in that spirit, but it is 
not. In saying that Douglas' "reception" here was the most ludi- 
crous failure that we have ever witnessed in a political campaign, we 
speak in candor and assert the simple truth, however much such a fact 
may surprise those who are laboring under the mistaken notion that 
" Egypt is all for Douglas. " 

The town was exceedingly quiet, and the people scattered about 
here and there, until 2 o'clock when the crowd gathered in the grove 
near by, and the debate commenced. Senator Douglas opened in a 
speech of an hour, was followed by Mr. Lincoln in an hour and a half, 
and Douglas wound up the discussion in a half hour's rejoinder. 

There was no attempt to interfere with either of the speakers, and 
all went off orderly and well. 

After the debate, cheers were given for Lincoln and for Douglas; 
and Gen. Linder being lively called for, mounted the stand and made 
a short Douglas speech. Hon. John Dougherty was also called on, 
and made a stirring Buchanan speech, denouncing Douglas in the 
strongest possible terms. 

[Lowell, Mass., Journal and Courier, September 22, 1858] 
The Senatorial Canvass in Illinois. — The Third senatorial 
discussion between Douglas and Lincoln took place at Jonesboro', 
Southern Illinois, on the loth inst. Jonesboro' is one of the darkest 
regions of " Egypt, " thirty miles from Cairo, and three hundred from 
Chicago. Union county, in which it is situated, gave at the Presiden- 
tial election 46 votes for Fremont, 246 for Fillmore, and 1283 for 
Buchanan. Here, Douglas was supposed to be on his own ground, 
and in his own classic phrase, he was here to bring Lincoln "to his 



266 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

milk. "* According to the correspondent of the Xew York Evening 
Post, however, his success was not very flattering. There were only 
about 1200 persons in attendance, showing less enthusiasm on the part 
of the friends of Douglas than might have been expected. About one 
half of these were Douglas men, one fourth Buchananites. and the 
remainder Republicans. Mr. Douglas' speech was not marked by his 
usual ability, and his delivery was very bad, while Lincoln's speech 
was said to have been the best he had delivered. Union county 
promises to give the Republican ticket three or four hundred votes, 
which is more than the Fremont and Fillmore vote combined in 1S56. 

[Gate City. Keokuk. Iowa. September 29, 18.58] 

NOT EXACTLY 

Douglas said that he was going to bring ■" Old Abe'' "to his milk" 
down in Eg\-pt. The report of their speeches has gone abroad to the 
world and the Louisville Journal speaks thus of the remarks of Lincoln : 

"Let no one omit to read them. They are searching, scathing, stunning. 
They belong to what some one h^ g graphicaUv styled the tomahawking species. " 



CHAPTER Mil 

THE CHAPwLZSTOX DEBATE 

[The Indiana JmmrumL^ TmHamapnlia, Septemh'^' 18581 

The Messenger of the American Express Company who c&me over 
the Terre Haute and Alton Road vesterdav fmnishes us with the 
following memoranda of the movements of T.'- : -.'— iz . I rias in 
Illinois: 

Sept. 15, 1S58 

Editoe JoraxAi.: Hon. Abraham Lincoln is at Maitocn today. 
Douglas is to be there tonight. Tomorrow they speak at Chaxie5t(». 
Each is to be accompanied by procesions from Mauoon. taking dif- 
ferent routes. There is considerable excitement to see which tHie has 
the largest tomout. The " Bowling Green Band " from Terre Haute 
is ranployed by the friends of Lincoln to head their proeessicHi. 

FOFETH JOrST DEBATE 

Ckarirttam, Septewtber 18, 1858 



Kr. LneoIn*s Speech 

Mr. Lincoln took the stand at a quarter before three, and was 
greeted with vociferous and protracted ap][daQse: after which, he said: 

Ladies and GtnSemen : It wiU be very difficult for an audiaice so 
large as this to hear distinctly what a speaker says, and consequently 
it is important that as profound silence be preserved as posaUe. 

While I was at the hotel to-day, an eldeiiy goitleman eaDed upm 
me to know whether I was really in favor of producing a perfect 
equality between the negroes and white people. [Great laughter.] 
While I had not proposed to myseK on this oceaaon to say mudi oai 
that subject, yet as the question was asked me, I thou^t I would 
occupy perhaps five minutes in saying something in regard to it. I 
will say. then, that I am not. nor ever have been, in favor of bringing 
about in any way the social and poHtical equality of the white and 
black races: [applause] that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of 
making voters or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold 
office, nor to intermarry with white people; aiMl I will say, in additkm 

a67 



268 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

to this, that there is a physical difference between the white and black 
races which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together 
on terms of social and political equality. And inasmuch as they 
cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the posi- 
tion of superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in 
favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race. 

I say upon this occasion: I do not perceive that because the white 
man is to have the superior position the negro should be denied every- 
thing. I do not understand that because I do not want a negro woman 
for a slave I must necessarily want her for a wife. [Cheers and laugh- 
ter.] My understanding is that I can just let her alone. I am now in 
my fiftieth year, and I certainly never have had a black woman for 
either a slave or a wife. So it seems to me quite possible for us to get 
along without making either slaves or wives of negroes. I will add to 
this that I have never seen, to my knowledge, a man, woman, or child 
who was in favor of producing a perfect equality, social and political, 
between negroes and white men. I recollect of but one distinguished 
instance that I ever heard of so frequently as to be entirely satisfied 
of its correctness, and that is the case of Judge Douglas's old friend 
Colonel Richard M. Johnson. [Laughter and cheers.] 

I will also add to the remarks^ I have made (for I am not going to 
enter at large upon this subject), that I have never had the least 
apprehension that I or my friends would marry negroes if there was no 
law to keep them from it; [laughter] but as Judge Douglas and his 
friends seem to be in great apprehension that they might, if there 
were no law to keep them from it, [roars of laughter] I give him the 
most solemn pledge that I will to the very last stand by the law of this 
State, which forbids the marrying of white people with negroes. [Con- 
tinued laughter and applause.] I will add one further word, which is 
this : that I do not understand that* there is any place where an alter- 
ation of the social and political relations of the negro and the white 
man can be made,^ except in the State Legislature, — not in the Con- 
gress of the United States; and as I do not really apprehend the 
approach of any such thing myself, and as Judge Douglas seems to be 
in constant horror that some such danger is rapidly approaching, I 
propose as the best means to prevent it that the Judge be kept at 
home, and placed in the State Legislature to fight the measure. 

*^Inserts "few" before "remarks." 

8 Omits "that." 

'Reads: "changed" for "made." 



LINCOLN AT CHARLESTON 269 

[Uproarious laughter and applause.] I do not propose dwelling longer 
at this time on this subject. 

When Judge Trumbull, our other Senator in Congress, returned to 
Illinois in the month of August, he made a speech at Chicago, in which 
he made what may be called a charge against Judge Douglas, which I 
understand proved to be very offensive to him. The Judge was at 
that time out upon one of his speaking tours through the country, and 
when the news of it reached him, as I am informed, he denounced 
Judge Trumbull in rather harsh terms for having said what he did in 
regard to that matter. I was traveling at that time, and speaking at 
the same places with Judge Douglas on subsequent days; and when I 
heard of what Judge Trumbull had said of Douglas, and what Douglas 
had said back again, I felt that I was in a position where I could not 
remam entirely silent in regard to the matter. Consequently, upon 
two or three occasions I alluded to it, and alluded- to it in no other 
wise than to say that in regard to the charge brought by Trumbull 
against Douglas, I personally knew nothing, and sought to say nothing 
about it ; that I did personally know Judge Trumbull ; that I believed 
him to be a man of veracity; that I believed him to be a man of 
capacity sufficient to know very well whether an assertion he was 
making, as a conclusion drawn from a set of facts, was true or false; 
and as a conclusion of my own from that, I stated it as my belief, if 
Trumbull should ever be called upon, he would prove everything he 
had said. I said this upon two or three occasions. 

Upon a subsequent occasion, Judge Trumbull spoke again before 
an audience at Alton, and upon that occasion not only repeated his 
charge against Douglas, but arrayed the evidence he relied upon to 
substantiate it. This speech was published at length; and subse- 
quently at Jacksonville Judge Douglas alluded to the matter. In the 
course of his speech, and near the close of it, he stated in regard to 
myself what I will now read : " Judge Douglas proceeded to remark 
that he should not hereafter occupy his time in refuting such charges 
made by Trumbull, but that Lincoln having indorsed the character 
of Trumbull for veracity, he should hold him (Lincoln) responsible 
for the slanders. " I have done simply what I have told you, to 
subject me to this invitation to notice the charge. I now wish to say 
that it had not originally been my purpose to discuss that matter at 
all. But inasmuch as it seems to be the wish of Judge Douglas to 

•Inserts "I" before "alluded." 



270 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

hold me responsible for it, then for once in my life I will play General 
Jackson, and to the just extent I take the responsibility. [Great 
applause and cries of "Good, good," "Hurrah for Lincoln," etc.] 

I wish to say at the beginning that I will hand to the reporters that 
portion of Judge Trumbull's Alton speech which was devoted to this 
matter, and also that portion of Judge Douglas's speech made at Jack- 
sonville in answer to it. I shall thereby furnish the readers of this 
debate with the complete discussion between Trumbull and Douglas. 
I cannot now read them, for the reason that it would take half of my 
first hour to do so. I can only make some comments upon them. 
Trumbull's charge is in the following words: "Now, the charge is, 
that there was a plot entered into to have a Constitution formed for 
Kansas, and put in force, without giving the people an opportunity to 
vote upon it, and that Mr. Douglas was in the plot. " I will state, 
without quoting further, for all will have an opportunity of reading it 
hereafter, that Judge Trumbull brings forward what he regards as 
sufficient evidence to substantiate this charge. 

It will be perceived Judge Trumbull shows that Senator Bigler, 
upon the floor of the Senate, had declared there had been a conference 
among the senators, in which conference it was determined to have 
an Enabling Act passed for the people of Kansas to form a constitution 
under, and in this conference it was agreed among them that it was 
best not to have a provision for submitting the constitution to a vote 
of the people after it should be formed. He then brings forward 
evidence to show, and showing, as he deemed,^ that Judge Douglas 
reported the bill back to the Senate with that clause striken out. 
He then shows that there was a new clause inserted into the bill, 
which would in its nature prevent a reference of the constitution back 
for a vote of the people, — if, indeed, upon a mere silence in the law, 
it could be assumed that they had the right to vote upon it. These 
are the general statements that he has made. 

I propose to examine the points in Judge Douglas's speech in which 
he attempts to answer that speech of Judge Trumbull's. When you 
come to examine Judge Douglas's speech, you will find that the first 
point he makes is: "Suppose it were true that there was such a 
change in the bill, and that I struck it out, — is that a proof of a plot to 
force a constitution upon them against their will?" His striking out 
such a provision, if there was such a one in the bill, he argues, does not 

^Inserts "it" after "deemed." 



LINCOLN AT CHARLESTON 271 

establish the proof that it was striken out for the purpose of robbing 
the people of that right. I would say, in the first place, that that 
would be a most manifest reason for it. It is true, as Judge Douglas 
states, that many Territorial bills have passed without having such 
a provision in them. I believe it is true, though I am not certain, 
that in some instances, constitutions framed under such bills have 
been submitted to a vote of the people, with the law silent upon^ the 
subject; but it does not appear that they once had their Enabling 
Acts framed with an express provision for submitting the constitution 
to be framed, to a vote of the people, and then that it was^ stricken 
out when Congress did not mean to alter the effect of the law. 

That there have been bills which never had the provision in, I do 
not question; but when was that provision taken out of one that it 
was in? More especially does this evidence tend to prove the propo- 
sition that Trumbull advanced, when we remember that that provision 
was stricken out of the bill almost simultaneously with the time that 
Bigler says there was a conference among certain senators, and in 
which it was agreed that a bill should be passed leaving that out. 
Judge Douglas, in answering Trumbull, omits to attend to the testi- 
mony of Bigler, that there was a meeting in which it was agreed they 
should so frame the bill that there should be no submission of the 
constitution to a vote of the people. The Judge does not notice this 
part of it. If you take this as one piece of evidence, and then ascer- 
tain that simultaneously Judge Douglas struck out a provision that 
did require it to be submitted, and put the two together, I think it will 
make a pretty fair show of proof that Judge Douglas did, as Trumbull 
says, enter into a plot to put in force a constitution for Kansas without 
giving the people any opportunity of voting upon it. 

But I must hurry on. The next proposition that Judge Douglas 
puts is this : " But upon examination it turns out that the Toombs bill 
never did contain a clause requiring the constitution to be submitted." 
This is a mere question of fact, and can be determined by evidence. 
I only want to ask this question : Why did not Judge Douglas say that 
these words were not stricken out of the Toombs bill, or this bill from 
which it is alleged the provision was stricken out, — a bill which goes by 
the name of Toombs, because he originally brought it forward? I ask 
why, if the Judge wanted to make a direct issue with Trumbull, did he 

iReads: "on" for "upon." 
aReads: "they were" for "it was." 



272 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

not take the exact proposition Trumbull made in his speech, and say 
it-*- was not stricken out? Trumbull has given the exact words that he 
says were in the Toombs bill, and he alleges that when the bill came 
back, the}^ were stricken out. Judge Douglas does not say that the 
words which Trumbull says were stricken out were not so stricken out; 
but he says there was no provision in the Toombs bill to submit the 
constitution to a vote of the people. 

We see at once that he is merely making an issue upon the meaning 
of the words. He has not undertaken to say that Trumbull tells a lie 
about these words being stricken out; but he is really, when pushed up 
to it, only taking an issue upon the meaning of the words. Now, then, 
if there be any issue upon the meaning of the words, or if there be upon 
the question of fact as to whether these words were stricken out, I 
have before me what I suppose to be a genuine copy of the Toombs 
bill, in which it can be shown that the words Trumbull says were in it, 
were, in fact, originally there. If there be any dispute upon the fact,' 
I have got the documents here to show they were there. If there be 
any controversy upon the sense of the words, — whether these words 
which were stricken out really constituted a provision for submitting 
the matter to a vote of the people, — as that is a matter of argument, 
I think I may as well use Trumbull's own argument. He says that 
the proposition is in these words : — 

" That the following propositions be and the same are hereby offered to the 
said Convention of the people of Kansas when formed, for their free acceptance 
or rejection; which, if accepted by the Convention and ratified by the people at 
the election for the adoption of the constitution, shall be obligatory upon the 
United States and the said State of Kansas." 

Now, Trumbull alleges that these last words were stricken out of the 
bill when it came back, and he says this was a provision for submitting 
the constitution to a vote of the people; and his argument is this: 
"Would it have been possible to ratify the land propositions at the 
election for the adoption of the constitution, unless such an election 
was to be held?" [Applause and laughter.] This^ is Trumbull's 
argument. Now, Judge Douglas does not meet the charge at all, but 
he stands up and says there was no such proposition in that bill for 
submitting the constitution, to be framed, to a vote of the people. 

^Inserts "that" before "it." 
aReads: "That" for "This." 



LINCOLN AT CHARLESTON 273 

Trumbull admits that the language is not a direct provision for sub- 
mitting it, but it is a provision necessarily implied from another pro- 
vision. He asks you how it is possible to ratify the land proposition 
at the election for the adoption of the constitution, if there was no 
election to be held for the adoption of the constitution. And he goes 
on to show that it is not any less a law because the provision is put in 
that indirect shape than it would be if it was put directly. But I 
presume I have said enough to draw attention to this point, and I pass 
it by also. 

Another one of the points that Judge Douglas makes upon Trumbull 
and at very great length, is, that Trumbull, while the bill was pending, 
said in a speech in the Senate that he supposed the constitution to be 
made would have to be submitted to the people. He asks, if Trumbull 
thought so then, what ground is there for anybody thinking othei^wise 
now?-^ Fellow-citizens, this much may be said in reply : That bill 
had been in the hands of a party to which Trumbull did not belong. 
It had been in the hands of the committee, at the head of which Judge 
Douglas stood. Trumbull perhaps had a printed copy of the original 
Toombs bill. I have not the evidence on that point, except a sort of 
inference I draw from the general course of business there. What 
alterations, or what provisions in the way of altering, were going on in 
that 2 committee, Trumbull had no means of knowing, until the 
altered bill was reported back. Soon afterward, when it was reported 
back, there was a discussion over it, and perhaps Trumbull in reading 
it hastily in the altered form did not perceive all the bearings of the 
alterations. He was hastily borne into the debate, and it does not 
follow that because there was something in it Trumbull did not per- 
ceive, that something did not exist. More than this, is it true that 
what Trumbull did can have any effect on what Douglas did? [Ap- 
plause.] Suppose Trumbull had been in the plot wath these other 
men, would that let Douglas out of it? [Applause and laughter.] 
Would it exonerate Douglas that Trumbull didn't then preceive 
that^ he was in the plot? 

He also asks the question : Why didn't Trumbull propose to amend 
the bill, if he thought it needed any amendment? Why, I believe that 
everything Judge Trumbull had proposed, particularly in connection 

^ Reads as follows: "He asks, if Trumbull thought so, what reason there Is now for any one to 
suppose the contrary." 

»Omits "that." 'Omits "that." 



274 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

with this question of Kansas and Nebraska, since he had been on the 
floor of the Senate, had been promptly voted down by Judge Douglas 
and his friends. He had no promise that an amendment offered by 
him to anything on this subject would receive the slightest consider- 
ation. Judge Trumbull did bring to the notice of the Senate at that 
time the fact that there was no provision for submitting the constitu- 
tion about to be made for the people of Kansas, to a vote of the people. 
I believe I may venture to say that Judge Douglas made some reply 
to this speech of Judge Trumbull's but he never noticed that part of it 
at all. And so the thing passed by. I think, then, the fact that 
Judge Trumbull offered no amendment, does not throw much blame 
upon him; and if it did, it does not reach the question of fact as to 
what Judge Douglas was doing. [Applause.] I repeat, that if Trum- 
bull had himself been in the plot, it would not at all relieve the others 
who were in it from blame. If I should be indicted for murder, and 
upon the trial it should be discovered that I had been implicated in 
that murder, but that the prosecuting witness was guilty too, that 
would not at all touch the question of my crime. It would be no 
relief to my neck that they discovered this other man who charged 
the crime upon me to be guilty too. 

Another one of the points Judge Douglas makes upon Judge Trum- 
bull is, that when he spoke in Chicago he made his charge to rest upon 
the fact that the bill had the provision in it for submitting the consti- 
tution to a vote of the people when it went into his (Judge Douglas's) 
hands, that it was missing when he reported it to the Senate, and that 
in a public speech he had subsequently said the alterations^ in the 
bill were^ made while it was in committee, and that they were made 
in consultation between him (Judge Douglas) and Toombs. And 
Judge Douglas goes on to comment upon the fact of Trumbull's 
adducing in his Alton speech the proposition that the bill not only 
came back with that proposition stricken out, but with another clause 
and another provision in it, saying that " until the complete execution 
of this Act there shall be no election in said Territory, " — which, Trum- 
bull argued, was not only taking the provision for submitting to a 
vote of the people, out of the bill, but was adding an affirmative one, 
in that it prevented the people from exercising the right under a bill 
that was merely silent on the question. 

•^ Reads: "alteration" for "alterations." 
'Reads: "was" for "were." 



LINCOLN AT CHARLESTON 275 

Now, in regard to what he says, that Trumbull shifts the issue, that 
he shifts his ground, — and I believe he uses the term that, " it being 
proven false, he has changed ground, " — I call upon all of you, when 
you come to examine that portion of Trumbull's speech (for it will 
make a part of mine) , to examine whether Trumbull has shifted his 
ground or not. I say he did not shift his ground, but that he brought 
forward his original charge and the evidence to sustain it yet more 
fully, but precisely as he originally made it. Then, in addition there- 
to, he brought in a new piece of evidence. He shifted no ground. 
He brought no new piece of evidence inconsistent with his former 
testimony; but^he brought a new piece, tending, as he thought, and 
as I think, to prove his proposition. To illustrate : A man brings an 
accusation against another, and on trial the man making the charge 
introduces A and B to prove the accusation. At a second trial he 
introduces the same witnesses, who tell the same story as before, and 
a third witness, who tells the same thing, and in addition gives further 
testimony corroborative of the charge. So with Trumbull. There 
was no shifting of ground, nor inconsistency of testimony between 
the new piece of evidence and what he originally introduced. 

But Judge Douglas says that he himself moved to strike out that 
last provision of the bill, and that on his motion it was stricken out and 
a substitute inserted. That I presume is the truth. I presume it is 
true that that last proposition was stricken out by Judge Douglas. 
Trumbull has not said it was not. Trumbull has himself said that it 
was so stricken out. He says: "I am speaking of the bill as Judge 
Douglas reported it back. It was amended somewhat in the Senate 
before it passed, but I am speaking of it as he brought it back. " Now 
when Judge Douglas parades the fact that the provision was stricken 
out of the bill when it came back, he asserts nothing contrary to what 
Trumbull alleges. Trumbull has only said that he originally put it in 
— not that he did not strike it out. Trumbull says it was not in the 
bill when it went to the committee. When it came back it was in, and 
Judge Douglas said the alterations were made by him in consultation 
with Toombs. Trumbull alleges, therefore, as his conclusion, that 
Judge Douglas put it in. 

Then, if Douglas wants to contradict Trumbull and call him a liar, 
let him say he did not put it in, and not that he didn't take it out 
again. It is said that a bear is sometimes hard enough pushed to 

iReads: "and" for "but." 



276 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

drop a cub; and so I presume it was in this case. [Loud applause.] 
I presume the truth is that Douglas put it in, and afterward took it 
out. [Laughter and cheers.] That, I take it, is the truth about it. 
Judge Trumbull says one thing, Douglas says another thing, and the 
two don't contradict one another at all. The question is. What did 
"he put it in for? In the first place, what did he take the other pro- 
vision out of the bill for, — the provision which Trumbull argued was 
necessary for submitting the constitution to a vote of the people? 
What did he take that out for; and, having taken it out, what did he 
put this in for? I say that in the run of things, it is not unlikely forces 
conspired to render it vastly expedient for Judge Douglas to take that 
latter clause out again. The question that Trumbull has made is that 
Judge Douglas put it in ; and he don't meet Trumbull at all unless he 
denies that. 

In the clause of Judge Douglas's speech upon this subject he uses 
this language toward Judge Trumbull. He says: ''He forges his 
evidence from beginning to end; and by falsifying the record, he en- 
deavors to bolster up his false charge. " Well, that is a pretty serious 
statement. Trumbull "forges his evidence from beginning to end. " 
Now, upon my own authority I say that it is not true. [Great cheers 
and laughter.] What is a forgery? Consider the evidence that Trum- 
bull has brought forward. When you come to read the speech, as you 
will be able to, examine whether the evidence is a forgery from begin- 
ning to end. He had the bill or document in his hand like that [hold- 
ing up a paper]. He says that is a copy of the Toombs bill, — the 
amendment offered by Toombs. He says that is a copy of the bill as 
it was introduced and went into Judge Douglas's hands. Now, does 
Judge Douglas say that is forgery?-*- That is one thing Trumbull 
brought forward. Judge Douglas says he forged it from beginning 
to end! That is the "beginning" we will say. Does Douglas say 
that is a forgery? Let him say it to-day, and we will have a subse- 
quent examination upon this subject. [Loud applause.] TrumbuU 
then holds up another document like this, and says that is an exact 
copy of the bill as it came back in the amended form out of Judge 
Douglas's hands. Does Judge Douglas say that^ that is a forgery? 
Does he say it in his general sweeping charge? Does he say so now? 
If he does not, then take this Toombs bill and the bill in the amended 

'Inserts "a" before "forgery.". 
« Omits "that." 



LINCOLN AT CHARLESTON 277 

form, and it only needs to compare them to see-"- the provision is in the 
one and not^ in the other; it leaves the inference inevitable that it 
was taken out. [Applause.] 

But while I am dealing with this question, let us see what Trum- 
bull's other evidence is. One other piece of evidence I will read. 
Trumbull says there are in this original Toombs bill these words: 
"That the following propositions be, and the same are hereby offered 
to the said Convention of the people of Kansas, when formed, for their 
free acceptance or rejection; which, if accepted by the Convention and 
ratified by the people at the election for the adoption of the constitu- 
tion, shall be obligatory upon the United States and the said State of 
Kansas. " Now, if it is said that this is a forgery, we will open the 
paper here and see whether it is or not. Again, Trumbull says, as he 
goes along, that Mr. Bigler made the following statement in his place 
in the Senate, Dec. 9, 1857:— 

" I was present when that subject was discussed by senators before the bill 
was introduced, and the question was raised and discussed, whether the con- 
stitution when formed, should be submitted to a vote of the people. It was 
held by those most intelUgent on the subject that in view of all the difficulties 
surrounding that Territory, the danger of any experiment at that time of a 
popular vote, it would be better there should be no such provision in the 
Toombs bill ; and it was my understanding, in all the intercourse I had, that the 
Convention would make a constitution, and send it here, without submitting 
it to the popular vote. " 

Then Trumbull follows on : — 

"In speaking of this meeting again on the 21st of December, 1857 [Con- 
gressional Globe; same vol. page 113], Senator Bigler said: — 

" ' Nothing was further from my mind than to allude to any social or confi- 
dential interview. The meeting was not of that character. Indeed, it was 
semi-official, and called to promote the public good. My recollection was clear 
that I left the conference under the impression that it had been deemed best to 
adopt measures to admit Kansas as a State through the agency of one popular 
election, and that for delegates to this Convention. This impression was 
stronger because I thought the spirit of the bill infringed upon the doctrine of 
non-intervention, to which 1 had great aversion; but with the hope of accom- 
plishing a great good, and as no movement had been made in that direction in 
the Territory, I waived this objection, and concluded to support the measure. 
I have a few items of testimony as to the correctness of these impressions, and 
with their submission I shall be content. I have before me the bill reported by 
the senator from lUinois on the 7th of March, 1856, providing for the admission 
of Kansas as a State, the third section of which reads as follows: — 

^Inserts "that" after "see." 
^Inserts "it is" before "not." 

—10 



278 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

" ' "That the following propositions be, and the same are hereby offered 
to the said Convention of the people of Kansas, when formed, for their free 
acceptance or rejection; which, if accepted by the Convention and ratified by 
the people at the election for the adoption of the Constitution, shall be obUga- 
tory upon the United States and the said State of Kansas. " 

" ' The bill read in his^ place by the senator from Georgia on the 25th of 
June, and referred to the Committee on Territories, contained the same section 
word for word. Both these bills were under consideration at the conference 
referred to ; but, sir, when the senator from IlUnois reported the Toombs bill to 
the Senate with amendments, the next morning, it did not contain that por- 
tion of the third section which indicated to the Convention that the Constitu- 
tion should be approved by the people. The words, " and ratified by the people 
at the election, for the adoption of the constitution," had been stricken out.' " 

Now, these things Trumbull says were stated by Bigler upon the 
floor of the Senate on certam days, and that they are recorded in the 
Congressional Globe on certain pages. Does Judge Douglas say this is 
a forgery? Does he say there is no such thing in the Congressional 
Globe? What does he mean when he says Judge Trumbull forges his 
evidence from beginning to end? So again he says in another place, 
that Judge Douglas, in his speech, Dec. 9, 1857 (Congressional Globe, 
part 1, page 15), stated: — 

"That during the last session of Congress I [Mr. Douglas] reported a bill 
from the Committee on Territories, to authorize the people of Kansas to assem- 
ble and form a constitution for themselves. Subsequently the senator from 
Georgia [Mr. Toombs] brought forward a substitute for my bill, which, after 
having been modified by him and myself in consultation, was passed by the 
Senate. " 

Now, Trumbull says this* is a quotation from a speech of Douglas, 
and is recorded in the Congressional Globe. Is it a forgery? Is it 
there or not? It may not be there, but I want the Judge to take these 
pieces of evidence, and distinctly say they are forgeries if he dare do it. 

A Voice. — He will. 

Mr. Lincoln. — Well, sir, you had better not commit him. [Cheers 

and laughter.] He gives other quotations, — another from Judge 

Douglas. He says : — 

" I will ask the senator to show me an intimation, from any one member of 
the Senate, in the whole debate on the Toombs bill, and in the Union, from any 
quarter, that the constitution was not to be submitted to the people. I will 
venture to say that on all sides of the chamber it was so understood at the 
time. If the opponents of the bill had understood it was not, they would hav 3 
made the point on it ; and if they had made it, we should certainly have yielde J 

1 Omits "his." 

«R€ads: "that" for "this." 



LINCOLN AT CHARLESTON 279 

to it, and put in the clause. That is a discovery made since the President 
found out that it was not safe to take it for granted that that would be done, 
which ought in fairness to have been done. " 

Judge Trumbull says Douglas made that speech, and it is recorded. 
Does Judge Douglas say it is a forgery, and was not true? Trumbull 
says somewhere, and I propose to skip it, but it will be found by any 
one who will read this debate, that he did distinctly bring it to the 
notice of those who were engineering the bill, that it lacked that 
provision; and then he goes on to give another quotation from Judge 
Douglas, where Judge Tiiimbull uses this language: — 

"Judge Douglas, however, on the same day and in the same debate, prob- 
ably recollecting or being reminded of the fact that I had objected to the 
Toombs bill when pending, that it did not provide for a submission of the 
Constitution to the people, made another statement which is to be found in the 
same volume of the Globe, page 22, in which he says : — 

" ' That the bill was silent on this subject was true, and my attention was 
called to that about the time it was passed; and I took the fair construction to 
be, that powers not delegated, were reserved, and that of course the consti- 
tution would be submitted to the people. ' 

" Whether this statement is consistent with the statement just before made, 
that had the point been made it would have been yielded to, or that it was a 
new discovery, you will determine. " 

So I say. I do not know whether Judge Douglas will dispute this, 
and yet maintain his position that Trumbull's evidence " was forged 
from beginning to end. " I will remark that I have not got these Con- 
gressional Globes with me. They are large books, and difficult to carry 
about, and if Judge Douglas shall say that on these points where Trum- 
bull has quoted from them there are no such passages there, I shall not 
be able to prove they are there upon this occasion, but I will have 
another chance. Whenever he points out the forgery and says, " I 
declare that this particular thing which Trumbull has uttered is not to 
be found where he says it is, " then my attention will be drawn to that, 
and I wiU arm myself for the contest, — stating now that I have not 
the slightest doubt on earth that I will find every quotation just where 
Trumbull says it is. 

Then the question is. How can Douglas call that a forgery? How 
can he make out that it is a forgery? What is a forgery? It is the 
bringing forward something in writing or in print purporting to be of 
certain effect when it is altogether untrue. If you come forward with 
my note for one hundred dollars when I have never given such a note, 
there is a forgery. If you come forward with a letter purporting to 



280 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

be written by-i' me which I never wrote, there is another forgery. If 
5'ou produce anything in writing or ins print saying it is so and so, the 
document not being genuine, a forgery has been committed. How do 
you make this a forgery when every piece of the evidence is genuine? 
If Judge Douglas does say these documents and quotations are false 
and forged, he has a full right to do so; but until he does it specifically, 
we don't know how to get at him. If he does say they are false and 
forged, I will then look further into it, and I presume I can procure the 
certificates of the proper officers that they are genuine copies. I have 
no doubt each of these extracts will be found exactly where Trumbull 
says it is. 

Then I leave it to you if Judge Douglas, in making his sweeping 
charge that Judge Trumbull's evidence is forged from beginning to 
end, at all meets the case, — if that is the way to get at the facts. I 
repeat again, if he will point out which one is a forgery, I will carefully 
examine it, and if it proves that any one of them is really a forgery, it 
will not be me who will hold to it any longer. I have always wanted 
to deal with every one I meet, candidly and honestly. If I have 
made any assertion not warranted by facts, and it is pointed out to 
me, I will withdraw it cheerfully. But I do not choose to see Judge 
Trumbull calumniated, and the evidence he has brought forward 
branded in general terms, " a forgery from beginning to end. " This^ 
is not the legal way of meeting a charge, and I submit to all intelligent 
persons, both friends of Judge Douglas and of myself, whether it is. 

Lincoln. — Now, coming back — how much time have I left? 

The Moderator. — Three minutes. 

The point upon Judge Douglas is this. The bill that went into his 
hands had the provisions in it for a submission of the constitution to 
the people; and I say its language amounts to an express provision for 
a submission, and that he took the provision out. He says it was 
known that the bill was silent in this particular; but I say, Judge 
Douglas, it was not silent when you got it. [Great applause.] It was 
vocal with the declaration, when you got it, for a submission of the 
constitution to the people. And now, my direct question to Judge 
Douglas is, to answer why, if he deemed the bill silent on this point, 
he found it necessary to strike out those particular harmless words. 

1 Reads: "from" for "by." 

aOmits"in." 

'Reads: "That" for "This." 



DOUGLAS AT CHARLESTON 281 

If he had found the bill silent and without this provision, he might 
say what he does now. If he supposes^ it was implied that the con- 
stitution would be submitted to a vote of the people, how could these 
two lines so incumber the statute as to make it necessary to strike 
them out? How could he infer that a submission was still implied, 
after its express provision had been striken from the bill? I find the 
bill vocal with the provision, while he silenced it. He took it out, and 
although he took out the provision preventing a submission to a vote 
of the people, I ask. Why did you first put it in? I ask him whether 
he took the original provision out, which Trumbull alleges was in the 
bill? If he admits that he did take it, / ask him what he did it for? 
It looks to us as if he had altered the bill. If it looks differently to 
him, — if he has a different reason for his action than^ the one we 
assign him — he can tell it. I insist upon knowing why he made the 
bill silent upon that point when it was vocal before he put his hands 
upon it. 

I was told, before my last paragraph, that my time was within three 
minutes of being out. I presume it is expired now; I therefore close. 
[Three tremendous cheers were given as Mr. Lincoln retired.] 



Senator Douglas's Reply 

Ladies and Gentlemen : I had supposed that we assembled here to- 
day for the purpose of a joint discussion between Mr. Lincoln and 
myself upon the political questions that now agitate the whole country. 
The rule of such discussions is, that the opening speaker shall touch 
upon all the points he intends to discuss, in order that his opponent, 
in reply, shall have the opportunity of answering them. Let me ask 
you what questions of public policy, relating to the welfare of this 
State or the Union, has Mr. Lincoln discussed before you? Mr. Lin- 
coln simply contented himself at the outset by saying that he was not 
in favor of social and political equality between the white man and 
the negro, and did not desire the law so changed as to make the latter 
voters or eligible to office. I am glad that I have at last succeeded in 
getting an answer out of him upon this question of negro citizenship 
and eligibility to office, for I have been trying to bring him to the 
point on it ever since this canvass commenced. 

I will now call your attention to the question which Mr. Lincoln has 

iReads: "supposed" for "supposes." 
2Reads: "from" for "than." 



282 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

occupied his entire time in discussing. He spent his whole hour in 
retaihng a charge made by Senator Trumbull against me. The cir- 
cumstances out of which that charge was manufactured occurred prior 
to the last Presidential election, over two years ago. If the charge 
was true, why did not Trumbull make it in 1856, when I was discus- 
sing the question3 of that day all over this State with Lincoln and him, 
and when it was pertinent to the then issue? He was then as silent as 
the grave on the subject. If that charge was true, the time to have 
brought it forward was the canvass of 1856 the year when the Toombs 
bill passed the Senate. When the facts were fresh in the public mind, 
when the Kansas question was the paramount question of the day, and 
when such a charge would have had a material bearing on the election, 
why did he and Lincoln remain silent then, knowing that such a 
charge could be made and proven if true? Were they not false to 
you and false to the country in going through that entire campaign, 
concealing their knowledge of this enormous conspiracy which, Mr. 
Trumbull says, he then knew and would not tell? [Laughter.] 

Mr. Lincoln intimates, in his speech, a good reason why Mr. Trum- 
bull would not tell, for he says that it might be true, as I proved that it 
was at Jacksonville, that Trumbull was also in the plot, yet that the 
fact of Trumbull's being in the plot would not in any way relieve me. 
He illustrates this argument by supposing himself on trial for murder, 
and says that it would be no extenuating circumstance if, on his trial, 
another man was found to be a party to his crime. Well, if Trumbull 
was in the plot, and concealed it in order to escape the odium which 
would have fallen upon himself, I ask you whether you can believe him 
now, when he turns State's evidence, and avows his own infamy in 
order to implicate me. ["He is a liar and a traitor. We couldn't 
believe Lyman Trumbull under oath, " etc.] I am amazed that Mr. 
Lincoln should now come forward and indorse that charge, occupying 
his whole hour in reading Mr. TrumbuU's speech in support of it. 
Why, I ask, does not Mr. Lincoln make a speech of his own instead of 
taking up his time reading Trumbull's speech at Alton? [Cheers.] 
I supposed that Mr. Lincoln was capable of making a public speech 
on his own account, or I should not have accepted the banter from 
him for a joint discussion. [Cheers and voices: "How about the 
charges? "] Do not trouble yourselves, I am going to make my speech 
in my own way, and I trust, as the Democrats listened patiently and 
respectfully to Mr. Lincoln, that his friends will not interrupt me 
when I am answering him. 



DOUGLAS AT CHARLESTON 283 

When Mr. Trumbull returned from the East, the first thing he did 
when he landed at Chicago was to make a speech wholly devoted to 
assaults upon my public character and public action. Up to that time 
I had never alluded to his course in Congress, or to him directly or 
indirectly, and hence his assaults upon me were entirely without provo- 
cation and without excuse. Since then he has been traveling from one 
end of the State to the other, repeating his vile charge. I propose now 
to read it in his own language : — 

"Now, fellow-citizens, I make the distinct charge that there was a precon- 
certed arrangement and plot entered into by the very men who now claim 
credit for opposing a constitution formed and put in force without giving the 
people any opportunity to pass upon it. This, my friends, is a serious charge, 
but I charge it to-night that the very men who traverse the country under 
banners proclaiming popular sovereignty, by design concocted a bill on pur- 
pose to force a constitution upon that people. " 

In answer to some one in the crowd who asked him a question 
Trumbull said : — 

"And you want to satisfy yourself that he was in the plot to force a consti- 
tution upon that people? I will satisfy you. I will cram the truth down any 
honest man's throat until he cannot deny it. And to the man who does deny 
it, I will cram the lie down his throat until he shall cry enough. [Voices, 
"shameful" "that's decency for you."] 

" It is preposterous; it is the most damnable effrontery that man ever put on 
to conceal a scheme to defraud and cheat the people out of their rights, and 
then claim credit for it." 

That is the polite language Senator Trumbull applied to me, his 
colleague, when I was two hundred miles off ["That's like him."] 
Why did he not speak out as boldly in the Senate of the United States, 
and cram the lie down my throat when I denied the charge, first made 
by Bigler, and made him take it back? You all recollect how Bigler 
assaulted me when I was engaged in a hand-to-hand fight, resisting a 
scheme to force a constitution on the people of Kansas against their 
will. He then attacked me with this charge; but I proved its utter 
falsity, nailed the slander to the counter, and made him take the back 
track. There is not an honest man in America who read that debate 
who will pretend that the charge is true. [" Hurrah for Douglas. "] 
Trumbull was then present in the Senate, face to face to me; and why 
did he not then rise and repeat the charge, and say he would cram the 
lie down my throat? [" He was afraid. "] I tell you that Trumbull 
then knew it was a lie. He knew that Toombs denied that there ever 



284 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

was a clause in the bill he brought forward, calling for and requiring 
a submission of the Kansas Constitution to the people. 

I will tell you what the facts of the case were. I introduced a bill to 
authorize the people of Kansas to form a constitution, and come into 
the Union as a State, whenever they should have the requisite popula- 
tion for a member of Congress, and Mr. Toombs proposed a substitute, 
authorizing the people of Kansas, with their then population of only 
25,000 to form a Constitution, and come in at once. The question at 
issue was, whether we would admit Kansas with a population of 25,000 
or make her wait until she had the ratio entitling her to a representa- 
tive in Congress, which was 93,420. That was the point of dispute in 
the Committee of Territories, to which both my bill and Mr. Toombs's 
substitute had been referred. I was overruled by a majority of the 
committee, my proposition rejected, and Mr. Toombs's proposition to 
admit Kansas then, with her population of 25,000, adopted. Accord- 
ingly, a bill to carry out his idea of immediate admission was reported 
as a substitute for mine; the only points at issue being, as I have 
already said, the question of population, and the adoption of safe- 
guards against frauds at the election. 

Tmmbull knew this, — the whole Senate knew it, — and hence he 
was silent at that time. He waited until I became engaged in this 
canvass, and finding that I was showing up Lincoln's Abolitionism and 
negro equality doctrines, [cheers] that I was driving Lincoln to the 
wall, and white men would not support his rank Abolitionism, he came 
back from the East and tnamped up a system of charges against me, 
hoping that I would be compelled to occupy my entire time in defend- 
ing myself, so that I would not be able to show up the enormity of the 
principles of the Abolitionists. Now, the only reason, and the true 
reason, why Mr. Lincoln has occupied the whole of his first hour in this 
issue between Trumbull and myself, is, to conceal from this vast 
audience the real questions which divide the two great parties. 
[''That's it;" and cheers.] 

I am not going to allow them to waste much of my time with these 
personal matters. I have lived in this State twenty-five years, most of 
that time have been in public life, and my record is open to you all. 
If that record is not enough to vindicate me from these petty, mali- 
cious assaults, I despise ever to be elected to office by slandering my 
opponents and traducing other men. [Cheers.] Mr. Lincoln asks 
you to elect him to the United States Senate to-day solely because he 



DOUGLAS AT CHARLESTON 285 

and Trumbull can slander me. Has he given any other reason? 
[" No, no. "] Has he avowed what he was desirous to do in Congress 
on any one question? He desires to ride into office, not upon his own 
merits, not upon the merits and soundness of his principles; but upon 
his success in fastening a stale old slander upon me. ["That's the 
truth. Hear, hear. "] 

I wish you to bear in mind that up to the time of the introduction of 
the Toombs bill, and after its introduction, there had never been an 
Act of Congress for the admission of a new State which contained a 
clause requiring its constitution to be submitted to the people. The 
general rule made the law silent on the subject, taking it for granted 
that the people would demand and compel a popular vote on the rati- 
fication of their constitution. Such was the general rule under Wash- 
ington, Jefferson, Madison, Jackson, and Polk, under the Whig Presi- 
dents and the Democratic Presidents, from the beginning of the 
Government down, and nobody dreamed that an effort would ever be 
made to abuse the power thus confided to the people of a Territory. 
For this reason our attention was not called to the fact of whether 
there was or was not a clause in the Toombs bill compelling submission 
but it was taken for granted that the constitution would be submitted 
to the people whether the law compelled it or not. 

Now, I will read from the report ■'• by me as Chairman of the Com- 
mittee on Territories at the time I reported back the Toombs substi- 
tute to the Senate. It contained several things which I had voted 
against in committee, but had been overruled by a majority of the 
members, and it was my duty as Chairman of the Committee to report, 
the bill back as it was agreed upon by them. The main point upon 
which I had been overruled was the question of population. In my 
report accompanjdng the Toombs bill, I said: — 

" In the opinion of your Committee, whenever a constitution shall be formed 
in any Territory', pre paraton." to its admission into the Union as a State, justice,, 
the genius of our institutions, the whole theorv' of our republican system, im- 
perativelj' demand that the voice of the people shall be fairly expressed, and 
their will embodied in that fundamental law, without fraud, or violence, or 
intimidation, or any other improper or unlawful influence, and subject to no 
other restrictions than those imposed by the Constitution of the United 
States." [Cheers.] 

There you find that we took it for granted that the constitution was 

* Inserts "made" after "report." 



286 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

to be submitted to the people, whether the bill was silent on the sub- 
ject or not. Suppose I had reported it so, following the example of 
Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, Adams, Jackson, 
Van Buren, Harrison, Tyler, Polk, Taylor, Fillmore, and Pierce, would 
that fact have been evidence of a conspiracy to force a constitution 
upon the people of Kansas against their will? [A unanimous " No. "] 
If the charge which Mr. Lincoln makes be true against me, it is true 
against Zachary Taylor, Millard Fillmore, and every Whig President, 
as well as every Democratic President, and against Henry Clay, who 
in the Senate or House, for forty years advocated bills similar to the 
one I reported, no one of them containing a clause compelling the 
submission of the constitution to the people. Are Mr. Lincoln and 
Mr. TiiimbuU prepared to charge upon all those eminent men from the 
beginning of the Government down to the present day, that the 
absence of a provision compelling submission, in the various bills 
passed by them, authorizing the people of Territories to form State 
constitutions, is evidence of a corrupt design on their part to force a 
constitution upon an unwilling people? ["We'll skin them if they 
dare to. "] 

I ask you to reflect on these things, for I tell you that there is a 
conspiracy to carry this election for the Black Republicans by slander, 
and not by fair means. Mr. Lincoln's speech this day is conclusive 
evidence of the fact. He has devoted his entire time to an issue be- 
tween Mr. Trumbull and myself, and has not uttered a word about the 
politics of the day. Are you going to elect Mr. Trumbull's colleague 
upon an issue between Mr. Trumbull and me? [Laughter, and " No, 
no!"] I thought I was running against Abraham Lincoln, that he 
claimed to be my opponent, had challenged me to a discussion of the 
public questions of the day with him, and was discussing these ques- 
tions with me; but it turns out that his only hope is to ride into office 
on Trumbull's back, who will carry him by falsehood. [Cheers.] 

Permit me to pursue this subject a little further. An examination 
of the record proves that Trumbull's charge — that the Toombs bill 
originally contained a clause requiring the constitution to be sub- 
mitted to the people — is false. The printed copy of the bill which Mr. 
Lincoln held up before you, and which he pretends contains such a 
clause, merely contains a clause requiring a submission of the land 
grant, and there is no clause in it requiring a submission of the constitu- 
tion. Mr. Lincoln cannot find such a clause in it. My report shows 



DOUGLAS AT CHARLESTON 287 

that we took it for granted that the people would require a submission 
of the constitution, and secure it for themselves. There never was a 
clause in the Toombs bill requiring the constitution to be submitted ; 
Trumbull knew it at the time, and his speech made on the night of its 
passage discloses the fact that he knew it was silent on the subject. 

Lmcoln pretends, and tells you, that Trumbull has not changed his 
evidence in support of his charge since he made his speech in Chicago. 
Let us see. The Chicago Times took up Trumbull's Chicago speech, 
compared it with the official records of Congress, and proved that 
speech to be false in its charge that the original Toombs bill required 
a submission of the constitution to the people. Trumbull then saw 
that he was caught, and his falsehood exposed, and he went to Alton, 
and, under the very walls of the penitentiary, [laughter] made a new 
speech, in which he predicated his assault upon me in the allegation that 
I had caused to be voted into the Toombs bill a clause which prohibited 
the Convention from submitting the constitution to the people, and 
quoted what he pretended was the clause. Now, has not Mr. Trum- 
bull entirely changed the evidence on which he bases his charge? 
[" Yes, yes! " " Lincoln's as big a liar as Trumbull, " etc.] The clause 
which he quoted in his Alton speech (which he has published and cir- 
culated broadcast over the State) as having been put into the Toombs 
bill by me, is in the following words: "And until the complete exe- 
cution of this Act, no other election shall be held in said Territory. " 

Trumbull says that the object of that amendment was to prevent 
the Convention from submitting the constitution to a vote of the 
people. 

Now, I will show you that when Trumbull made that statement at 
Alton he knew it to be untrue. I read from Trumbull's speech in the 
Senate on the Toombs bill on the night of its passage. He then said — 

" There is nothing said in this bill, so far as I have discovered, about sub- 
mitting the constitution, which is to be formed, to the people for their sanction 
or rejection. Perhaps the Convention will have the right to submit it, if it 
should think proper, but it is certainly not compelled to do so, according to 
the provisions of the bill. " 

Thus you see that Trumbull, when the bill was on its passage in the 
Senate, said that it was silent on the subject of submission, and that 
there was nothing in the bill one way or the other on it. In his Alton 
speech he says^ there was a clause in the bill preventing its submission 
to the people, and that I had it voted in as an amendment. Thus I 

^Inserts "that" after "says." 



288 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

convict him of falsehood and slander by quoting from him, on the 
passage of the Toombs bill in the Senate of the United States, his own 
speech, made on the night of July 2, 1856, and reported in the Con- 
yressional Globe for the first session of the thirty-fourth Congress, vol. 
33. What will you think of a man who makes a false charge, and 
falsifies the records to prove it? I will now show you that the clause 
which Trumbull says was put in the bill on my motion was never put 
m at all by me, but was stricken out on my motion, and another sub- 
stituted in its place. I call your attention to the same volume of the 
'Congressional Globe to which I have already referred, page 795, where 
you will find the following^ report of the proceedings of the Senate: — 

" Mr. Douglas. — I have an amendment to offer from the Committee on Ter- 
ritories. On page 8, section 11, strike out the words 'until the complete exe- 
>cution of this Act, no other election shall be held in said Territory', and insert 
the amendment which I hold in my hand. " 

You see from this that I moved to strike out the very words that 
"Trumbull says I put in. The Committee on Territories overruled me 
in committee, and put the clause in; but as soon as I got the bill back 
-into the Senate, I moved to strike it out, and put another clause in its 
^lace. On the same page you will find that my amendment was 
^agreed to unanimously. I then offered another amendment, recog- 
nizing the right of the people of Kansas, under the Toombs bill, to 
*order just such elections as they saw proper. You can find it on page 
796 of the same volume. I will read it : — 

" Mr. Douglas. — I have another amendment to offer from the Committee, to 
follow the amendment which has been adopted. The bill reads now: 'And 
until the complete execution of this Act, no other election shall be held in said 
Territory.' It has been suggested that it should be modified in this way: 
' And to avoid conflict in the complete execution of this Act, all other elections 
in said Territpry are hereby postponed until such time as said Convention 
shall appoint, ' so that they can appoint the day in the event there should be 
a. failure to come into the Union. " 

The amendment was unanimously agreed to, — clearly and distinctly 
recognizing the right of the Convention to order just as many elections 
as they saw proper in the execution of the Act. Trumbull concealed 
in his Alton speech the fact that the clause he quoted had been stricken 
out in my motion, and the other fact that this other clause was put in 
the bill on my motion, and made the false charge that I incorporated 

^Inserts "in the" after "following." 



DOUGLAS AT CHARLESTON 289 

into the bill a clause preventing submission, in the face of the fact, 
that, on my motion, the bill was so amended before it passed as to 
recognize in express words the right and duty of submission. 

On this record that I have produced before you, I repeat my charge 
that Trumbull did falsify the public records of the country, in order to 
make his charge against me; ["it's plain," and tremendous applause] 
and I tell Mr. Abraham Lincoln that if he will examine these records, 
he will then know that what I state is true. Mr. Lincoln has this day 
indorsed Mr. Trumbull's veracity after he had my word for it that that 
veracity was proved to be violated and forfeited by the public records 
It will not do for Mr. Lincoln, in parading his calumnies against me 
to put Mr. Trumbull between him and the odium and responsibility 
which justly attaches to such calumnies. I tell him that I am as ready 
to prosecute the indorser as the maker of a forged note. [Cheers.] I 
regret the necessity of occupying my time with these petty personal 
matters. It is unbecomming the dignity of a canvass for an office of 
the character for which we are candidates. When I commenced the 
canvass at Chicago, I spoke of Mr. Lincoln in terms of kindness as an 
old friend; I said that he was a good citizen, of unblemished character, 
against whom I had nothing to say. I repeated these complimentary 
remarks about him in my successive speeches, until he became the 
indorser for these and other slanders against me. If there is anything 
personally disagreeable, uncourteous, or disreputable in these person- 
alities, the sole responsibility rests on Mr. Lincoln, Mr. Trumbull, and 
their backers. 

I will show you another charge made by Mr. Lincoln against me, ^ 
as an off-set to his determination of willingness to take back anything 
that is incorrect, and to correct any false statement he may have made. 
He has several times charged that the Supreme Court, President 
Pierce, President Buchanan, and myself, at the time I introduced the 
Nebraska bill in January, 1854, at Washington, entered into a con- 
spiracy to establish slavery all over this country. I branded this 
charge as a falsehood, and then he repeated it; asked me to analyze 
its truth; and answer it. I told him; " Mr. Lincoln, I know what you 
are after, — you want to occupy my time in personal matters, to pre- 
vent me from showing up the revolutionary principles which the 
Abolition party — whose candidate you are — have proclaimed to the 
world." 

But he asked me to analyze his proof, and I did so. I called his 



290 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

attention to the fact that at the time the Nebraska bill was introduced, 
there was no such case as the Dred Scott case pending in the Supreme 
Court, nor was it brought there for years afterwards, and hence that it 
was impossible that there could have been any such conspiracy 
between the Judges of the Supreme Court and the other parties 
involved. I proved by the record that the charge was false, and what 
did he answer? Did he take it back like an honest man, and say that 
he had been mistaken? No; he repeated the charge, and said, that 
although there was no such case pending that year, there'"' was an 
understanding between the Democratic owners of Dred Scott and the 
Judges of the Supreme Court and other parties involved, that the case 
should be brought up. I then demanded to know who these Demo- 
cratic owners of Dred Scott were. He could not or would not tell; he 
did not know. In truth, there was no Democratic owners of Dred 
Scott on the face of the land. [Laughter.] Dred Scott was owned 
at that time by the Rev. Dr. Chaffee, an Abolition member of Congress 
from Springfield, Massachusetts, and his wife; [immense laughter and 
applause] and Mr. Lincoln ought to have known that Dred Scott was 
so owned, for the reason that as soon as the decision was announced by 
the court Dr. Chaffee and his wife executed a deed emancipating him, 
and put that deed on record. [Cheers.] It was a matter of public 
record, therefore, that at the time the case was taken to the Supreme 
Court, Dred Scott was owned by an Abolition member of Congress, a 
friend of Lincoln's and a leading man of his party, while the defense 
was conducted by Abolition lawyers, — and thus the Abolitionists man- 
aged both sides of the case. I have exposed these facts to Mr. Lincoln, 
and yet he will not withdraw his charge of conspiracy. I now submit 
to you whether you can place any confidence in a man who continues 
to make a charge when its utter falsity is proven by the public records. 
I will state another fact to show how utterly reckless and unscrupu- 
lous this charge against the Supreme Court, President Pierce, President 
Buchanan, and myself is. Lincoln says that President Buchanan was 
in the conspiracy at Washington in the winter of 1854, when the 
Nebraska bill was introduced. The history of this country shows 
that James Buchanan was at that time representing this country at 
the Court of St. James, Great Britain, with distinguished ability and 
usefulness, that he had not been in the United States for nearly a year 
previous, and that he did not return until about three years after. 

ilnserts "that" before "there." 



DOUGLAS AT CHARLESTON 291 

[Cheers.] Yet Mr. Lincoln keeps repeating this charge of conspiracy 
against Mr. Buchanan when the public records prove it to be untrue. 

Having proved it to be false as far as the Supreme Court and Presi- 
dent Buchanan are concerned, I drop it, leaving the public to say 
whether I, by myself, without their concurrence, could have gone into 
a conspiracy with them. [Laughter and cheers.] My friends, you 
see that the object clearly is to conduct the canvass on personal mat- 
ters, and hunt me down with charges that are proven to be false by 
the public records of the country. I am willing to throw open my 
whole public and private life to the inspection of any man, or all men 
who desire to investigate it. Having resided among you twenty-five 
years, during nearly the whole of which time a public man, exposed to 
more assaults, perhaps more abuse, than any man living of my age, or 
who ever did live; and having survived it all and still commanded 
your confidence; I am willing to trust to your knowledge of me and 
my public conduct without making any more defense against these 
assaults. [Great cheering.] 

Fellow-citizens, I came here for the purpose of discussing the lead- 
ing political topics which now agitate the country. I have no charges 
to make against Mr. Lincoln, none against Mr. Trumbull, and none 
against any man who is a candidate, except in repelling their assaults 
upon me. If Mr. Lincoln is a man of bad character, I leave you to 
find it out; if his votes in the past are not satisfactory, I leave others to 
ascertain the fact ; if his course on the Mexican war was not in accord- 
ance with your notions of patriotism and fidelity to our own country 
as against a public enemy, I leave you to ascertain the fact. I have 
no assaults to make upon him, except to trace his course on the ques- 
tions that now divide the country and engross so much of the people's 
attention. 

You know that prior to 1854 this country was divided into two 
great political parties, one the Whig, the other the Democratic. I, as 
a Democrat for twenty years prior to that time, had been in public 
discussions in this State as an advocate of Democratic principles, and 
I can appeal with confidence to every Old Line Whig within the hear- 
ing of my voice to bear testimony that during all that period I fought 
you Whigs like a man on every question that separated the two 
parties. I had the highest respect for Henry Clay as a gallant party 
leader, as an eminent statesman, and as one of the bright ornaments 
of this country; but I conscientiousl}'' believe that the Democratic 



292 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

party was right on the questions which separated the Democrats 
from the Whigs. The man does not live who can say that I ever 
personally assailed Henry Clay or Daniel Webster, or any one of the 
leaders of that great party, whilst I combated with all my energy the 
measures they advocated. 

What did we differ about in those days? Did Whigs and Demo- 
crats differ about this slavery question? On the contrary, did we not, 
in 1850, unite to a man in favor of that system of Compromise meas- 
ures which Mr. Clay introduced, Webster defended, Cass supported, 
and Fillmore approved and made the law of the land by his signature? 
While we agreed on those Compromise measures, we differed about a 
bank, the tariff, distribution, the specie circular, the sub-treasury, and 
other questions of that description. Now, let me ask you which one 
of those questions on which Whigs and Democrats then differed now 
remains to divide the two great parties? Every one of those questions 
which divided Whigs and Democrats has passed away, the country has 
outgrown them, they have passed into history. Hence it is immaterial 
whether you were right or I was right on the bank, the sub-treas- 
ury,.and other questions, because they no longer continue living issues. 
What, then, has taken the place of those questions about which we 
once differed? The slavery question has now become the leading and 
controlling issue; that question on which you and I agreed, on which 
the Whigs and Democrats united, has now become the leading issue 
between the National Democracy on the one side, and the Republican, 
or Abolition, party on the other. 

Just recollect for a moment the memorable contest of 1850, when 
this country was agitated from its center to its circumference by the 
slavery agitation. All eyes in this nation were then turned to the 
three great lights that survived the days of the Revolution. 

They looked to Clay, then in retirement at Ashland, and to Webster 
and Cass, in the United States Senate. Clay had retired to Ashland, 
having, as he supposed, performed his mission on earth, and was pre- 
paring himself for a better sphere of existence in another world. In 
that retirement he heard the discordant, harsh and grating sounds of 
sectional strife and disunion, and he aroused and came forth and 
resumed his seat in the Senate, that great theater of his great deeds. 
From the moment that Clay arrived among us he became the leader 
of all the Union men, whether Whigs or Democrats. For nine months 
we each assembled, each day, in the council-chamber. Clay in the chair 



DOUGLAS AT CHARLESTON 293 

with Cass upon his right hand, and Webster upon his left, and the 
Democrats and Whigs gathered around, forgetting differences, and 
only animated by one common, patriotic sentiment, to devise means 
and measures by which we could defeat the mad and revolutionary 
scheme of the Northern Abolitionists and Southern Disunionists. 
[Cheers.] 

We did devise those means. Clay brought them forward, Cass 
advocated them; the Union Democrats and Union Whigs voted for 
them; Fillmore signed them; and they gave peace and quiet to the 
country. Those Compromise measures of 1850 were founded upon 
the great fundamental principle that the people of each State and each 
Territory ought to be left free to form and regulate their own domestic 
institutions in their own way, subject only to the Federal Constitution. 
[Cheers. '' Hear, hear. "] I will ask every Old Line Democrat and 
every Old Line Whig within the hearing of my voice if I have not truly 
stated the issues as they then presented themselves to the country. 
You recollect that the Abolitionists raised a howl of indignation, and 
cried for vengeance and the destruction of Democrats and Whigs both, 
who supported those Compromise measures of 1850. When I returned 
home to Chicago, I found the citizens inflamed and infuriated against 
the authors of those great measures. Being the only man in that city 
who was held responsible for affirmative votes on all those measures 
I came forward and addressed the assembled inhabitants, defended 
each and every one of Clay's Compromise measures as they passed the 
Senate and the House, and were approved by President Fillmore. 
Previous to that time, the city council had passed resolutions nulli- 
fying the Act of Congress, and instructing the police to withhold all 
assistance from its execution, but the people of Chicago listened to my 
defense, and, like candid, frank, conscientious men, when they became 
convinced that they had done an injustice to Clay, Webster, Cass, and 
all of us who had supported those measures, they repealed their nulli- 
fying resolutions, and declared that the laws should be executed and 
the supremacy of the Constitution maintained. Let it always be 
recorded in history to the immortal honor of the people of Chicago 
that they returned to their duty when they found that they were 
wrong, and did justice to those whom they had blamed and abused 
unjustly. 

When the Legislature of this State assembled that year, they pro- 
ceeded to pass resolutions approving the Compromise measures of 



294 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

1850. When the Whig party assembled in 1852 at Baltimore in 
National Convention for the last time, to nominate Scott for the 
Presidency, they adopted as a part of their platform the Compromise 
measures of 1850 as the cardinal plank upon which every Whig would 
stand, and by which he would regulate his future conduct. When the 
Democratic party assembled at the same place one month after, to 
nominate General Pierce, we adopted the same platform so far as those 
Compromise measures were concerned, agreeing that we would stand 
by those glorious measures as a cardinal article in the Democratic 
faith. Thus you see that in 1852 all the old Whigs and all the old 
Democrats stood on a common plank so far as this slavery question 
was concerned, differing on other questions. 

Now, let me ask, how is it that since that time so many of you Whigs 
have wandered from the true path marked out by Clay, and carried 
out broad and wide by the great Webster? How is it that so 
many Old Line Democrats have abandoned the old faith of their party, 
and joined with Abolitionism and Free-soilism to overturn the plat- 
form of the old Democrats, and the platform of the old Whigs? You 
cannot deny that since 1854 there has been a great revolution on this 
one question. How has it been brought about? I answer, that no 
sooner was the sod grown green over the grave of the immortal Clay; 
no sooner was the rose planted on the tomb of the god-like Webster; 
than many of the leaders of the Whig party, such as Seward of New 
York, and his followers, led off and attempted to Abolitionize the 
Whig party, and transfer all your old Whigs, bound hand and foot, 
into the Abolition camp. Seizing hold of the temporary excitement 
produced in this country by the introduction of the Nebraska bill, the 
disappointed politicians in the Democratic party united with the 
disappointed politicians in the Whig party, and endeavored to form 
a new party, composed of all the Abolitionists, of Abolitionized Demo- 
crats, and Abolitionized Whigs, banded together in an Abolition 
platform. 

And who led that crusade against National principles in this State? 
I answer, Abraham Lincoln on behalf of the Whigs, and Lyman Trum- 
bull on behalf of the Democrats, formed a scheme by which they would 
Abolitionize the two great parties in this State, on condition that 
Lincoln should be sent to the United States Senate in the place of 
General Shields, and that Trumbull should go to Congress from the 
Belleville District until I would be accommodating enough either to 



DOUGLAS AT CHARLESTON 295 

die or resign for his benefit, and then he was to go to the Senate in my 
place. You all remember that during the year 1854 these two worthy 
gentlemen, Mr. Lincoln and Mr. Trumbull, one an Old Line Whig and 
the other an Old Line Democrat, were hunting in partnership to elect 
a Legislature against the Democratic party. . 

I canvassed the State that year from the time I returned home until 
the election came off, and spoke in every county that I could reach 
during that period. In the northern part of the State I found Lin- 
coln's ally, in the person of Fred Douglass, the negro, preaching Aboli- 
tion doctrines; while Lincoln was discussing the same principles down 
here; and Trumbull, a little farther down, was advocating the election 
of members to the Legislature who would act in concert with Lincoln's 
and Fred Douglass's friends. I witnessed an effort made at Chicago 
by Ijincoln's then associates, and now supporters, to put Fred Doug- 
lass, the negro, on the stand at a Democratic meeting, to reply to the 
illustrious General Cass, when he was addressing the people there. 
[" Shame on them. "] They had the same negro hunting me down, 
and they now have a negro traversing the northern counties of the 
State and speaking in behalf of Lincoln. ["Hit him again; he's a 
disgrace to the white people," etc.] Lincoln knows that when we 
were at Freeport in joint discussion there was a distinguished colored 
friend of his there then who was on the stump for him, [shouts of 
laughter] and who made a speech there the night before we spoke, and 
another the night after, a short distance from Freeport, in favor of 
Lincoln; and in order to show how much interest the colored brethren 
felt in the success of their brother Abe, [renewed laughter] I have with 
me here, and would read it if it would not occupy too much of my 
time, a speech made by Fred Douglass in Poughkeepsie, N. Y., a short 
time since, to a large Convention, in which he conjures all the friends 
of negro equality and negro citizenship to rally as one man around 
Abraham Lincoln, the perfect embodiment of their principles, and by 
all means to defeat Stephen A. Douglas. [" It can't be done, " etc.] 

Thus you find that this Republican party in the northern part of the 
State had colored gentlemen for their advocates in 1854, in company 
with Lincoln and Trumbull, as they have now. When, in October, 
1854, 1 went down to Springfield to attend the State Fair, I found the 
leaders of this party all assembled together under the title of an anti- 
Nebraska meeting. It was Black Republican up north, and anti- 
Nebraska at Springfield. I found Lovejoy, a high-priest of Abolition- 



296 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

ism, and Lincoln, one of the leaders who was towing the Old Line 
Whigs into the Abolition camp, and Trumbull, Sidney Breese, and 
Governor Reynolds, all making speeches against the Democratic party 
and myself, at the same place and in the same cause. ["They're all 
birds of a feather, shun them. "] The same men who are now fighting 
the Democratic party and the regular Democratic nominees in this 
State were fighting us then. They did not then acknowledge that 
they had become Abolitionists, and many of them deny it now. 
Breese, Dougherty, and Reynolds were then fighting the Democracy 
under the title of anti-Nebraska men, and now they are fighting the 
Democracy under the pretense that they are Simon pure Democrats, 
[laughter] saying that they are authorized to have every office holder 
in Illinois beheaded who prefers the election of Douglas to that of 
Lincoln, or the success of the Democratic ticket in preference to the 
Abolition ticket for members of Congress, State officers, members of 
the Legislature, or any office in the State. 

They canvassed the State against us in 1854, as they are doing now, 
owning different names and different principles in different localities, 
but having a common object in view, viz. : The defeat of all men hold- 
ing National principles in opposition to this sectional Abolition party. 
They carried the Legislature in 1854, and when it assembled in Spring- 
field they proceeded to elect a United States Senator, all voting for 
Lincoln, with one or two exceptions, which exceptions prevented 
them from quite electing him. And why should they not elect him? 
Had not Trumbull agreed that Lincoln should have Shields's place? 
Had not the Abolitionists agreed to it? Was it not the solemn com- 
pact, the condition on which Lincoln agreed to Abolitionize the old 
Whigs that he should be Senator? Still, Trumbull, having control of 
a few Abolitionized Democrats, would not allow them all to vote for 
Lincoln on any one ballot, and thus kept him for some time within one 
or two votes of an election, until he worried out Lincoln's friends, and 
compelled them to drop him and elect Trumbull, in violation of the 
bargain. [Cheers.] 

I desire to read you a piece of testimony in confirmation of the 
notorious^ public facts which I have stated to you. Colonel James 
H. Matheny, of Springfield, is, and for twenty years has been, the 
confidential personal and political friend and manager of Mr. Lincoln. 
Matheny is this very day the candidate of the Republican, or Aboli- 

J- Reads: "notoriously" for "notorious." 



DOUGLAS AT CHARLESTON 297 

tion, party for Congress against the gallant Major Thos. L. Harris, in 
the Springfield District, and is making speeches for Lincoln and against 
me. I will read you the testimony of Matheny about this bargain 
between Lincoln and Trumbull when they undertook to Abolitionize 
Whigs and Democrats only four years ago. Matheny, being mad at 
Trumbull for having played a Yankee trick on Lincoln, exposed the 
bargain in a public speech two years ago, and I will read the published 
report of that speech, the correctness of which Mr. Lincoln will not 
deny : — 

"The Whigs, Abolitionists, and^ Know-Nothings, and renegade Democrats 
made a solemn compact for the purpose of carrying this State against the 
Democi-aey on this plan: 1st, that they would all combine and elect Mr. Trum- 
bull to Congress, and thereby carry his district for the Legislature, in order to 
throw all the strength that could be obtained into that body against the Dem- 
ocrats; 2d, that when the Legislature should meet, the officers of that body, 
such as Speakers, 2 clerks, door-keepers, etc., would be given to the Abolition- 
ists; and, 3d, that the Whigs were to have the United States senator. That, 
accordingly, in good faith, Trumbull was elected to Congress, and his district 
carried for the Legislature ; and when it convened, the Abolitionists got all the 
officers of that body, and thus far the ' bond ' was fairly executed. The Whigs, 
on their part, demanded the election of Abraham Lincoln to the United States 
Senate, that the bond might be fulfilled, the other parties to the contract hav- 
ing already secured to themselves all that was called for. But, in the most 
perfidious manner, they refused to elect Mr. Lincoln, and the mean, low-lived, 
sneaking Trumbull succeeded, by pledging all that was required by any party, 
in thrusting Lincoln aside, and foisting himself, an excrescence from the rotten 
bowels of the Democracy, into the United States Senate ; and thus it has ever 
been, that an honest man makes a bad bargain when he conspires or contracts 
with rogues. " 

Lincoln's confidential friend Matheny thought that Lincoln made a 
bad bargain when he conspired with such rogues as Trumbull and the 
Abolitionists. [Great laughter.] I would like to know whether Lin- 
coln had as high opinion of Trumbull's veracity when the latter agreed 
to support him for the Senate, and then cheated him as he does now, 
[renewed laughter] when Trumbull comes forward and makes charges 
against me. You could not then prove Trumbull an honest man either 
by Lincoln, by Matheny, or by any of Lincoln's friends. They charged 
everywhere that Trumbull had cheated them out of the bargain, and 
Lincoln found sure enough that it was a bad bargain to contract and 
conspire with rogues. [Laughter.] 

iOmits"and." 

aReads: "Speaker" for "Speakers." 



298 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

And now I will explain to you what has been a mystery all over the 
State and Union, — the reason why Lincoln was nominated for the 
United States Senate by the Black Republican Convention. You 
know it has never been usual for any party, or any convention, to 
nominate a candidate for United States senator. Probably this was 
the first time that such a thing was ever done. The Black Republican 
Convention had not been called for that purpose, but to nominate a 
State ticket, and every man was surprised and many disgusted when 
Lincoln was nominated. Archie Williams thought he was entitled to 
it, Browning knew that he deserved it, Wentworth was certain that he 
would get it, Peck had hopes, Judd felt sure that he was the man, and 
Palmer had claims and had made arrangements to secure it; but, to 
their utter amazement, Lincoln was nominated by the Convention, 
[laughter] and not only that, but he received the nomination unani- 
mously, by a resolution declaring that Abraham Lincoln was "the 
first, last, and only choice " of the Republican party. 

How did this occur? Why, because they could not get Lincoln's 
friends to make another bargain with " rogues, " [laughter] unless the 
whole party would come up as one man and pledge their honor that 
they would stand by Lincoln, first, last, and all the time, and that he 
should not be cheated by Lovejoy this time, as he was by Trumbull 
before. Thus, by passing this resolution, the Abolitionists are all for 
him, Lovejoy and Farnsworth are canvassing for him, Giddings is 
ready to come here in his behalf, and the negro speakers are already 
on the stump for him, and he is sure not to be cheated this time. He 
would not go into the arrangement until he got their bond for it, and 
Trumbull is compelled now to take the stump, get up false charges 
against me, and travel all over the State to try and elect Lincoln, in 
order to keep Lincoln's friends quiet about the bargain in which Trum- 
bull cheated them four years ago. You see, now, why it is that Lincoln 
and Trumbull are so mighty fond of each other. [Tremendous 
laughter.] They have entered into a conspiracy to break me down by 
these assults on my public character, in order to draw my attention 
from a fair exposure of the mode in which they attempted to Abo- 
litionize the old Whig and old Democratic parties and lead them cap- 
tive into the Abolition camp. ["That's so," and "Hear, hear."] 

Do you not all remember that Lincoln went around here four years 
ago making speeches to you, and telling that you should all go for the 
Abolition ticket, and swearing that he was as good a Whig as he ever 



DOUGLAS AT CHARLESTON 299 

was; [laughter] and that Trumbull went all over the State making 
pledges to the old Democrats, and trying to coax them into the Abo- 
lition camp, swearing by his Maker, with the uplifted hand, that he 
was still a Democrat, always intended to be, and that never would he 
desert the Democratic party. [Laughter.] He got your votes to elect 
an Abolition Legislature, which passed Abolition resolutions, attemp- 
ted to pass Abolition laws, and sustained Abolitionists for office. State 
and National. Now, the same game is attempted to be played over 
again. Then Lincoln and Trumbull made captives of the old Whigs 
and old Democrats, and carried them into the Abolition camp, where 
Father Giddings, the high-priest of Abolitionism, received and chris- 
tened them in the dark cause just as fast as they were brought in. 
[" Hear, hear. "] Giddings found the converts so numerous that he 
had to have assistance, and he sent for John P. Hale, N. P. Banks, 
Chase, and other Abolitionists, and they came on, and with Lovejoy 
and Fred Douglass, the negro, helped to baptize these new converts 
as Lincoln, Trumbull, Breese, Reynolds, and Dougherty could cap- 
ture them and bring them within the Abolition clutch. Gentlemen, 
they are now around, making the same kind of speeches. Trumbull 
was down in Monroe County the other day, assailing me, and making 
a speech in favor of Lincoln; and I will show you under what notice 
his meeting was called. You see these people are Black Republicans 
or Abolitionists up north, while at Springfield to-day they dare not 
call their Convention " Republican, " but are obliged to say " a Con- 
vention of all men opposed to the Democratic party; " and in Monroe 
County and lower Egypt Trumbull advertises their meetings as 
follows : — 

A meeting of the Free Democracy will take place at Waterloo on Monday, 
September 12tli inst., whereat Hon. Lyman Trumbull, Hon. Jehu^ Baker, and 
others will address the people upon the different political topics of the day. 
Members of all parties are cordially invited to be present, and hear and deter- 
mine for themselves. 

September 9, 1858 The Free Democracy 

Did you ever before hear of this new party, called the " Free Democ- 
racy"? 

What object have these Black Republicans in changing their name 
in every county? ["To cheat people. "] They have one name in the 
north, another in the center, and another in the south. When I used 
to practice law before my distinguished judicial friend, whom I recog- 

iReads: "John" for "Jehu." 



300 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

nize in the crowd before me, if a man was charged with horse-stealing, 
and the proof showed that he went by one name in Stephenson County, 
another in Sangamon, a third in Monroe, and a fourth in Randolph, we 
thought that the fact of his changing his name so often to avoid detec- 
tion was pretty strong evidence of his guilt. I would like to know why 
it is that this great Free-soil Abolition party is not willing to avow the 
same name in all parts of the State? [" They dare not. "] If this party 
believes that its course is just, why does it not avow the same princi- 
ples in the North and in the South, in the East and in the West, 
wherever the American flag waves over American soil? [Cheers.] 

A Voice. — The party does not call itself Black Republican in the 
North. 

Mr. Douglas. — Sir, if you will get a copy of the paper published at 
Waukegan, fifty miles from Chicago, which advocates the election of 
Mr. Lincoln, and has his name flying at its mast-head, you will find 
that it declares that ''this paper is devoted to the cause" of Black 
Republicanism. [" Good, hit him again, " and cheers.] I had a copy 
of it, and intended to bring it down here into Egypt to let you see what 
name the party rallied under up in the Northern part of the State, and 
to convince you that their principles are as different in the two sections 
of the State as is their name. I am sorry that I have mislaid it and 
have not got it here. heir principles in the north are jet-black, 
[laughter] in the center they are in color a decent mulatto, [renewed 
laughter] and in lower Egypt they are almost white. [Shouts of 
laughter.] Why, I admired many of the white sentiments contained 
in Lincoln's speech at Jonesboro, and could not help but contrast 
them with the speeches of the same distinguished orator made in the 
northern part of the State. Down here he denies that the Black 
Republican party is opposed to the admission of any more Slave States, 
under any circumstances, and says that they are willing to allow the 
people of each State, when it wants to come into the Union, to do just 
as it pleases on the question of slavery. In the north, you find Love- 
joy, their candidate for Congress in the Bloomington District, Farns- 
worth, their candidate in the Chicago District, and Washburne, their 
candidate in the Galena District, all declaring that never will they 
consent, under any circumstances, to admit another Slave State, even 
if the people want it. [" That's so. "] Thus, while they avow one set 
of principles up there, they avow another and entirely different set 
down here. And here let me recall to Mr. Lincoln the scriptual 



DOUGLAS AT CHARLESTON 301 

quotation which he has applied to the Federal Government, that a 
house divided against itself cannot stand, and ask him how does he 
expect this Abolition party to stand when in one half of the State it 
advocates a set of principles which it has repudiated in the other 
half? [Laughter and applause.] 

I am told that I have but eight minutes more. I would like to talk 
to you an hour and a half longer, but I will make the best use I can 
of the remaining eight minutes. Mr. Lincoln said in his first remarks 
that he was not in favor of the social and political equality of the negro 
with the white man. Everywhere up north he has declared that he 
was not in favor of the social and political equality of the negro, but 
he would not say whether or not he was opposed to negroes voting and 
negro citizenship. I want to know whether he is for or against negro 
citizenship. He declared his utter opposition to the Dred Scott 
decision, and advanced as a reason that the court had decided that it 
was not possible for a negro to be a citizen under the Constitution of 
the United States. If he is opposed to the Dred Scott decision for 
that reason, he must be in favor of conferring the right and privilege 
of citizenship upon the negro! I have been trying to get an answer 
from him on that point, but have never yet obtained one, and I will 
show you why. In every speech he made in the north he quoted the 
Declaration of Independence to prove that all men were created equal, 
and insisted that the phrase " all men " included the negro as well as 
the white man, and that the equality rested upon divine law. Here 
is what he said on that point :^ 

" I should like to know if, taking this old Declaration of Independence, which 
declares that all men are equal upon principle, and making exceptions to it 
where will it stop? If one man says it does not mean a negro, why may not 
another say it does not mean some other man? If that Declaration is not the 
truth, let us get the statute book in which we find it and tear it out. " 

Lincoln maintains there that the Declaration of Independence 
asserts that the negro is equal to the white man, and that under divine 
law; and if he believes so, it was rational for him to advocate negro 
citizenship, which, when allowed, puts the negro on an equality under 
the law. [" No negro equality for us; down with Lincoln. "] I say to 
you in all frankness, gentlemen, that in my opinion a negro is not a 
citizen, cannot be, and ought not to be, under the Constitution of the 
United States. [" That's the doctrine. "] I will not even qualify my 
opinion to meet the declaration of one of the Judges of the Supreme 



302 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Court in the Dred Scott case, " that a negro descended from African 
parents, who was imported into this country' as a slave, is not a citizen, 
and cannot be. " - 1 say that this government was established on the 
white basis. It was made by white men, for the benefit of white men 
and their posterity forever, and never should be administered by any 
except white men. [Cheers.] I declare that a negro ought not to be 
a citizen, whether his parents were imported into this country as 
slaves or not, or whether or not he was born here. It does not depend 
upon the place a negro's parents were born, or whether they were 
slaves or not, but upon the fact that he is a negro, belonging to a race 
incapable of self-government, and for that reason ought not to be on 
an equality with white men. [Immense applause.] 

My friends, I am sorry that I have not time to pursue this argument 
further, as I might have done but for the fact that Mr. Lincoln com- 
pelled me to occupy a portion of my time in repelling those gross 
slanders and falsehoods that Tnmabull has invented against me and 
put in circulation. In conclusion, let me ask you why should this 
Government be divided by a geographical line, — arraying all men 
North in one great hostile party against all men South? Mr. Lincoln 
teUs you, in his speech at Springfield, "that a house divided against 
itself cannot stand; that this Government, divided into Free and 
Slave States, cannot endure, permanently; that they must either be 
all Free or aU Slave ; all one thing or all the other. " Why cannot 
this Government endure, divided into Free and Slave States, as our 
fathers made it? When this Government was established by Wash- 
ington, Jefferson, Madison, Jay, Hamilton, Franklin, and the other 
sages and patriots of that day, it was composed of Free States and 
Slave States, bound together by one common Constitution. We have 
existed and prospered from that day to this thus divided, and have 
increased with a rapidity never before equaled, in wealth, the exten- 
sion of territory, and all the elements of power and greatness, until 
we have become the first nation on the face of the globe. Why can 
we not thus continue to prosper? We can, if we will live up to and 
execute the Government upon these principles upon which our 
fathers established it. During the whole period of our existence, 
Divine Providence has smiled upon us, and showered upon our nation 
richer and more abundant blessings than have ever been conferred 
upon any other. 

Senator Douglas' time here expired, and he stopped on the minute. 



LINCOLN AT CHARLESTON 303 

amidst deafening applause. As Mr. Lincoln stepped fon^-ard the 
crowd sent up three rousing cheers. 

Mr. Lincoln's Rejoinder 

Fellow-Citizens : It follows as a matter of course that a half-hour 
answer to a speech of an hour and a half can be but a very hurried one. 
I shall only be able to touch upon a few of the points suggested by 
Judge Douglas, and give them a brief attention, while I shall have to 
totally omit others, for the want of time. 

Judge Douglas has said to you that he has not been able to get from 
me an answer to the question whether I am in favor of negro citizen- 
ship. So far as I know, the Judge never asked me the question before. 
[Applause.] He shall have no occasion to ever ask it again, for I tell 
him very frankly that I am not in favor of negro citizenship. [Renewed 
applause.] This furnishes me an occasion for saying a few words upon 
the subject. I mentioned, in a certain speech of mine which has been 
printed, that the Supreme Court had decided that a negro could not 
possibly be made a citizen; and without saying what was my ground of 
complaint in regard to that, or whether I had any ground of complaint. 
Judge Douglas has from that thing manufactured nearly everything 
that he ever says about my disposition to produce an equality between 
the negroes and the white people. [Laughter and applause.] If any 
one will read my speech, he will find I mentioned that as one of the 
points decided in the course of the Supreme Court opinions, but I did 
not state what objection I had to it. But Judge Douglas tells the 
people what my objection was when I did not tell them myself. 
[Loud applause and laughter.] Xow, my opinion^ is that the dif- 
ferent States have the power to make a negro a citizen, under the 
Constitution of the United States, if they choose. The Dred Scott 
decision decides that they have not that power. If the State of 
Illinois had that power, I should be opposed to the exercise of it. 
[Cries of ''Good, good," and applause.] That is all I have to say 
about it. 

Judge Douglas has told me^ that he heard my speeches north, and 
my speeches south ; that he had heard me at Ottawa and at Freeport 
in the north, and recently at Jonesboro in the south and there was a 
very different cast of sentiment in the speeches made at the different 
points. I will not charge upon Judge Douglas that he wilfully mis- 

>^ Inserts "own" before "opinion." 
*Reads: "you" for "me." 



304 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

represents me but I call upon every fair-minded man to take these 
speeches and read them, and I dare him to point out any difference 
between my speeches^ north and south. [Great cheering.] 

While I am here perhaps I ought to say a word, if I have the time, 
in regard to the latter portion of the Judge's speech, which was a sort 
of declamation in reference to my having said I entertained the belief 
that this Government would not endure, half Slave and half Free. I 
have said so, and I did not say it without what seemed to me to be 
good reasons. It perhaps would require more time than I have now 
to set forth these reasons in detail ; but let me ask you a few questions. 
Have we ever had any peace on this slavery question? [" No, no. "] 
When are we to have peace upon it, if it is kept in the position it now 
occupies? [" Never. "] How are we ever to have peace upon it? 
That is an important question. To be sure, if we will all stop, and 
allow Judge Douglas and his friends to march on in their present 
career until they plant the institution all over the nation, here and 
wherever else our flag waves, and we acquiesce in it, there will be 
peace. But let me ask Judge Douglas how he is going to get the people 
to do that? [Applause.] They have been wrangling over this ques- 
tion for at least forty years. This was the cause of the agitation 
resulting in the Missouri Compromise; this produced the troubles at 
the annexation of Texas, in the acquisition of the territory acquired 
in the Mexican War. 

Again, this was the trouble which was quieted by the Compromise of 
1850, when it was settled "forever, " as both the great political parties 
declared in their National Conventions. That "forever" turned out 
to be just four years, [laughter] when Judge Douglas himself reopened it. 
[Immense applause. Cries of "Hit him again," etc.] When is it 
likely to come to an end? He introduced the Nebraska bill in 1854 to 
put another end to the slavery agitation. He promised that it would 
finish it all up immediately, and he has never made a speech since, 
until he got into a quarrel with the President about the Lecompton 
Constitution, in which he has not declared that we are just at the end of 
the slavery agitation. But in one speech, I think last winter, he did 
say that he didn't quite see when the end of the slavery agitation 
would come. [Laughter and cheers.] Now he tells us again that it is 
all over, and the people of Kansas have voted down the Lecompton 
Constitution. How is it over? That was only one of the attempts 

^Inserts "printed" before "speeches." 



LINCOLN AT CHARLESTON 305 

at putting an end to the slavery agitation, — one of these " final settle- 
ments. " [Renewed laughter.] Is Kansas in the Union? Has she 
formed a constitution that she is likely to come in under? Is not the 
slavery agitation still an open question in that Territory? Has the 
voting down of that constitution put an end to all the trouble? Is 
that more likely to settle it than every one of these previous attempts 
to settle the slavery agitation? [Cries of " No, no. "] 

Now, at this day in the history of the world we can no more fortell 
where the end of this slavery agitation will be than we can see the end 
of the world itself. The Nebraska-Kansas bill was introduced four 
years and half ago, and if the agitation is ever to come to an end, we 
may say we are four years and half nearer the end. So, too, we can 
say we are four years and a half nearer the end of the world ; and we 
can just as clearly see the end of the world as we can see the end of this 
agitation. [Applause.] The Kansas settlement did not conclude it. 
If Kansas should sink to-day, and leave a great vacant space in the 
earth's surface, this vexed question would still be among us. I say, 
then, there is no way of putting an end to the slavery agitation 
amongst us but to put it back upon the basis where our fathers placed 
it; [applause] no way but to keep it out of our new Territories, [renewed 
applause] — to restrict it forever to the old States where it now exists. 
[Tremendous and prolonged cheering; cries of "that's the doctrine;" 
"good, good," etc.] Then the public mind will rest in the belief 
that it is in the course of ultimate extinction. That is one way of 
putting an end to the slavery agitation. [Applause.] 

The other way is for us to surrender, and let Judge, Douglas and his 
friends have their way and plant slavery over all the States; cease 
speaking of it as in any way a wrong; regard slavery as one of the 
common matters of property, and speak of negroes as we do of our 
horses and cattle. But while it drives on in its state of progress as it 
is now driving, and as it has driven for the last five years,?! have ven- 
tured the opinion, and I say to-day, that we will have no end to the 
slavery agitation until it takes one turn or the other. [Applause.] 
I do not mean that when it takes a turn toward ultimate extinction it 
will be in a day, nor in a year, nor in two years. I do not suppose that 
in the most peaceful way ultimate extinction would occur in less than 
a hundred years at least; but that it will occur in the best way for both 
races, in God's own good time, I have no doubt. [Applause.] But, 
my friends, I have used up more of my time than I intended on this 
point. 



306 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Now, in regard to this matter about Trumbull and myself having 
made a bargain to sell out the entire Whig and Democratic parties in 
1854; Judge Douglas brings foi-ward no evidence to sustain his charge, 
except the speech Matheny is said to have made in 1856, in which he 
told a cock-and-bull story of that sort, upon the same moral principles 
that Judge Douglas tells it here to-day. [Loud applause.] This is 
the simple truth. I do not care greatly for the story, but this is the 
truth of it; and I have twice told Judge Douglas to his face that from 
beginning to end there is not one word of truth in it. [Thunders of 
applause.] I have called upon him for the proof, and he does not at 
all meet me as Trumbull met him upon that of which we were just 
talking, by producing the record. He didn't bring the record, because 
there was no record for him to bring. [Cheers and laughter.] When 
he asks if I am ready to indorse Trumbull's veracity after he has 
broken a bargain with me, I reply that if Trumbull had broken a bar- 
gain with me, I would not be likely to indorse his veracity, [laughter 
and applause] but I am ready to indorse his veracity because neither 
in that thing, nor in any other, in all the years that I have known Lyman 
Trumbull, have I known him to fail of his word or tell a falsehood, large 
or small. [Great cheering.] It is for that reason that I indorse 
Lyman Trumbull. 

Mr. James Brown (Douglas postmaster). — What does Ford's His- 
tory say about him? 

Mr. Lincoln. — Some gentleman asks me what Ford's History says 
about him. My own recollection is, that Ford speaks of Trumbull 
in very disrespectful terms in several portions of his book, and that he 
talks a great deal worse of Judge Douglas. [Roars of laughter and 
applause.] I refer you, sir, to the History for examination. [Cheers.] 

Judge Douglas complains, at considerable length, about a disposition 
on the part of Trumbull and myself to attack him personally. I want 
to attend to that suggestion a moment. I don't want to be unjustly 
accused of dealing illiberally or unfairly with an adversary, either in 
court, or in a political canvass, or anywhere else. I would despise my- 
self if I supposed myself ready to deal less liberally with an adversary 
than I was willing^ to be treated myself. Judge Douglas, in a general 
way, without putting it in a direct shape, revives the old charge against 
me in reference to the Mexican war. He does not take the responsi- 
bility of putting it in a very definite form, but makes a general refer- 

^Reads: "disposed" for "willing." 



LINCOLN AT CHARLESTON 307 

ence to it. That charge is more than ten years old. He complains of 
Trumbull and myself, because he says we bring charges against him 
one or two years old. He knows, too, that in regard to the Mexican 
war story, the more respectable papers of his own party throughout 
the State have been compelled to take it back and acknowledge that 
it was a lie. [Continued and vociferous applause.] 

[Here Mr. Lincoln turned to the crowd on the platform, and select- 
ing Hon. Orlando B. Ficklin, led him forward, and said: — ] 

I do not mean to do anything with Mr. Ficklin^ except to present 
his face and tell you that he personally knows W^ to be a lie ! He was a 
member of Congress at the only time I was in Congress, and he 
[Ficklin] knows that whenever there was an attempt to procure a vote 
of mine which would indorse the origin and justice of the war, I refused 
to give such indorsement, and voted against it; but I never voted 
against the supplies for the army, and he knows, as well as Judge 
Douglas, that whenever a dollar was asked, by way of compensation 
or otherwise, for the benefit of the soldiers, / gave all the votes that 
Ficklin or Douglas did, and perhaps more. [Loud applause.] 

Mr. Ficklin. — My friends, I wish to say this in reference to the 
matter. Mr. Lincoln and myseK are just as good personal friends as 
Judge Douglas and myself. In reference to this Mexican war, my 
recollection is that when Ashmun's resolution [amendment] was offered 
by Mr. Ashmun of Massachusetts, in which he declared that the Mexi- 
can war was unnecessary ^ and unconstitutionally commenced by the 
President, my recollection is that Mr. Lincoln voted for that resolution 

Mr. Lincoln. — That is the truth. Now, you all remember that was 
a resolution censuring the President for the manner in which the war 
was begun. You know they have charged that I voted against the 
supplies, by which I starved the soldiers who were out fighting the 
battles of their country. I say that Ficklin knows it is false. When 
that charge was brought forward by the Chicago Times, the Spring- 
field Register [Douglas organ] reminded the Times that the charge 
really applied to John Henry; and I do know that John Henry is now 
making speeches and fircely battling for Judge Douglas. [Loud ap- 
plause.] If the Judge now says that he offers this as a sort of a set- 
off to what I said to-day in reference to Trumbull's charge, then I 
remind him that he made this charge before I said a word about 

1 Reads: "Mc Ficklin" for "Ficklin." 

2 Inserts "that is" before "it." 

'Reads: "unnecessarily" for "unnecessary." 



308 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

TmrnbuH's. He brought this forward at Ottawa, the first time we 
met face to face; and in the opening speech that Judge Douglas made, 
he attacked me in regard to a matter ten years old. Isn't he a pretty 
man to be whining about people making charges against him only 
two years old ! [Cheers.] 

The Judge thinks it is altogether wrong that I should have dwelt 
upon this charge of Trumbull's at all. I gave the apology for doing 
so in my opening speech. Perhaps it didn't fix your attention. I 
said that when Judge Douglas was speaking at places where I spoke 
on the succeeding day, he used very harsh language about this charge. 
Two or three times afterward I said I had confidence in Judge Trum- 
bull's veracity and intelligence; and my own opinion was, from what 
I knew of the character of Judge Trumbull, that he would vindicate 
his position, and prove whatever he had stated to be true. This I 
repeated two or three times; and then I dropped it, without saying 
anything more on the subject for weeks, — perhaps a month. I passed 
it by without noticing it at all till I found, at Jacksonville, Judge 
Douglas, in the plentitude of his power, is not willing to answer 
Trumbull and let me alone, but he comes out there and uses this 
language: "He should not hereafter occupy his time in refuting 
such charges made by Trumbull, but that Lincoln, having indorsed 
the character of Trumbull for veracity, he should hold him [Lincoln] 
responsible for the slanders. " What was Lincoln to do? [Laughter.] 
Did he not do right, when he had the fit opportunity of meeting 
Judge Douglas here, to tell him he was ready for the responsibility? 
[Enthusiastic cheering; " Good, good; " " Hurrah for Lincoln. "] I ask 
a candid audience whether in doing thus Judge Douglas was not the 
assailant rather than I? ["Yes, yes. Hit him again."] Here I 
meet him face to face, and say I am ready to take the responsibility, 
so far as it rests on^ me. 

Having done'so, I^ask the attention of this audience to the question 
whether I have succeeded in sustaining the charge, [" Yes, yes. "] and 
whether Judge Douglas has at all succeeded in rebutting it? [Loud 
cries of "No, no. "] You all heard me call upon him to say which of 
these pieces of evidence was a forgery? Does he say that what I pre- 
sent here as a copy of the original Toombs bill is a forgery? ["No, 
no. "] Does he say that what I present as a copy of the bill reported 
by himself is a forgery? [" No, no, no. "] Or what is presented as a 

'Reads: "upon" for "on." 



LINCOLN AT CHARLESTON 309 

transcript from the Globe of the quotations from Bigler's speech, is a 
forgery? [" No, no, no. "] Does he say the quotations from his own 
speech are forgeries? [" No, no, no. "] Does he say this transcript 
from Trumbull's speech is a forgery? [Loud cries of "No, no; he 
didn't deny one of them. "] / would then like to know how it come 
about that when each piece of a story is true, the whole story turns out 
false? [Great cheers and laughter.] I take it these people have 
some sense; they see plainly that Judge Douglas is playing cuttle-fish, 
[laughter] — a small species of fish that has no mode of defending itself 
when pursued except by throwing out a black fluid, which makes the 
water so dark the enemy cannot see it, and thus it escapes. [Roars 
of laughter.] Is not^ the Judge playing the cuttle-fish? ["Yes, 
yes, " and cheers.] 

Now, I would ask very special attention to the consideration of 
Judge Douglas's speech at Jacksonville ; and when you shall read his 
speech of to-day, I ask you to watch closely and see which of these 
pieces of testimony, every one of which he says is a forgery, he has 
shown to be such. Not one of them has he shown to be a forgery. Then 
I ask the original question. If each of the pieces of testimony is true, 
how is it possible that the whole is a falsehood? [Loud and continued 
cheers.] 

In regard to Trumbull's charge that he [Douglas] inserted a provi- 
sion into the bill to prevent the constitution being submitted to the 
people, what was^ his answer? He comes here and reads from the 
Congressional Globe to show that on his motion that provision was 
struck out of the bill. Why, Trumbull has not said it was not 
stricken out, but Trumbull says he [Douglas] put it in; and it is no 
answer to the charge to say he afterward took it out. Both are per- 
haps true. It was in regard to that thing precisely that I told him 
he had dropped the cub. [Roars of laughter.] Trumbull shows you 
that by his introducing the bill it was his cub. [Laughter.] It is 
no answer to that assertion to call Trumbull a liar merely because he 
did not especially say that Douglas struck it out. Suppose that were 
the case, does it answer Trumbull? [" No, no. "] I assert that you 
[pointing to an individual] are here to-day, and you undertake to prove 
me a liar by showing me that you were in Mattoon yesterday. [Laugh- 
ter.] I say that you took your hat off your head, and you prove me 

i Reads: "Ain't" for "Is not." 
*Reads: "is" for "was." 

—11 



310 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

a liar by putting it on your head. [Roars of laughter.] That is the 
whole force of Douglas's argument. 

Now, I want to come back to my original question. ' Trumbull says 
that Judge Douglas had a bill with a provision in it for submitting a 
Constitution to be made, to a vote of the people of Kansas. Does 
Judge Douglas deny that fact? [Cries of "No, no. "] Does he deny 
that the provision which Trumbull reads was put in that bill? [" No, 
no. "] Then Trumbull says he struck it out. Does he dare to deny 
that? [" No, no, no. "] He does not, and I have the right to repeat 
the question, — Why Judge Douglas took it out? [Immense applause.] 
Bigler has said there was a combination of certain senators, among 
whom he did not include Judge Douglas, by which it was agreed that 
the Kansas bill should have a clause in it not to have the constitution 
formed under it submitted to a vote of the people. He did not say 
that Douglas was among them, but we prove by another source that 
about the same time Douglas comes into the Senate with that provision 
stricken out of the bill. 

Although Bigler cannot say they were all working in concert, yet it 
looks very much as if the thing was agreed upon and done with a 
mutual understanding after the conference ; and while we do not know 
that it was absolutely so, yet it looks so probable that we have a right 
to call upon the man who knows the true reason why it was done, to 
tell what the true reason was. [Great cheers.] When he will not tell 
what the true reason was, he stands in the attitude of an accused 
thief who has stolen goods in his possession, and when called to account 
refuses to tell where he got them. [Immense applause.] Not only 
is this the evidence, but when he comes in with the bill having the 
provision stricken out, he tells us in a speech, not then, but since, that 
these alterations and modifications in the bill had been made by him 
in consultation with Toombs, the originator of the bill. He tells us the 
same to-day. He says there were certain modifications made in the 
bill in committee that he did not vote for. I ask you to remember 
while certain amendments were made which he disapproved of, but 
which a majority of the Committee voted in, he has himself told us 
that in this particular the alterations and modifications were made by 
him, upon consultation with Toombs. [Enthusiastic cheering.] We 
have his own word that these alterations were made by him, and not 
by the Committee. ["That's so;" "Good, good."] 

Now, I ask, what is the reason Judge Douglas is so chary about 



LINCOLN AT CHARLESTON 311 

coming to the exact question? What is the reason he will not tell you 
anything about how it was made, by whom it was made, or that he 
remembers it being made at all? Why does he stand playing upon the 
meaning of words, and quibbling around the edges of the evidence? 
If he can explain all this, but leaves it unexplained, I have a right to 
infer that Judge Douglas understood it was the purpose of his party, in 
engineering that bill through, to make a constitution, and have Kansas 
come into the Union with that constitution, without its being submitted 
to a vote of the people. [" That's it. "] If he will explain his action on 
this question, by giving a better reason for the facts that happened, than 
he has done, it will be satisfactory. But until he does that, — until he 
gives a better or more plausible reason than he has offered against the 
evidence in the case, — / suggest to him it will not avail him at all that 
he swells himself up, takes on dignity, and calls people liars. [Great 
applause and laughter.] Why, sir, there is not a word in Trumbull's 
speech that depends on Trumbull's veracity at all. He has only 
arrayed the evidence, and told you what follows as a matter of reason- 
ing. There is not a statement in the whole speech that depends on 
Trumbull's word. If you have ever studied geometry, you remember 
that by a course of reasoning, Euclid proves that all the angles in a 
triangle are equal to two right angles. Euclid has shown you how 
to work it out. Now, if you undertake to disprove that proposition, 
and to show that it is erroneous, would you prove it to be false by 
calling Euclid a liar? [Roars of laughter and enthusiastic cheers.] 
They tell me that my time is out and therefore I close. 

When Mr. Lincoln concluded, three cheers were given spontaneously 
by the vast crowd; after which the people poured out the gates, the 
carriages and bands of music formed in procession, and the whole 
marched back to town. 

[Chicago Times, September 21, 1858] 

THE CAItfPAIGN.- JOINT DISCUSSION AT CHARLESTON 



15,000 People on the Ground.— A Field-Day for the Democracy.— Lin- 
coln Tull of Trumbull; Delivers Trumbull's Alton Speech; Has 
Nothing- to Say for Himself.— Lincoln Retreats from Eg-ypt.— Trum- 
bull Covers His Fligrht.— Great Speech by Senator Dougrlas.- Trum- 
bull's Slanders Refuted!— Lincoln's Weakness Exposed! 

The fourth joint discussion between Senator Douglas and Abraham 
Lincoln took place at Charleston, Coles County, on Saturday last. 



312 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

The occasion drew together one of the largest gatherings of the people 
that has taken place this year. From twelve to fifteen thousand were 
present. The democracy were out in their strength and struck terror 
into the hearts of their enemies. Things were so arranged that Sena- 
tor Douglas should be received at Mattoon on his arrival from Lower 
Egjqpt, by the delegations from the eastern part of Coles and escorted 
down to Charleston, ten miles distant. Accordingly, on Saturday 
morning at 3 o'clock, when he reached Mattoon, his friends were 
waiting for him; and he was welcomed with a salute and escorted to 
the house of a friend, which was brilliantly illuminated. At eight 
o'clock the various delegations formed in procession and waited upon 
him to attend him down to Charleston. Before starting. Col. Cun- 
ningham, in behalf of his fellow citizens, welcomed Senator Douglas 
to Coles county in a beautiful address, in the course of which he called 
his attention to a part of the procession, consisting of thirty two 
young ladies on horseback, representing the Federal Union, sixteen 
of whom carried the national colors waving from ash sticks, and 
the other sixteen carrying the same colors on hickory sticks, thus 
furnishing a beautiful illustration of the union between the whigs and 
democrats when our country was endangered by the agitation of 
sectional men in 1850, and emblematic of the union which now exists 
between the national men of these two parties to defeat and crush out 
abolitionism. Senator Douglas made a happy and appropriate re- 
sponse, and the line of march was then taken up for Charleston. 

It was a glorious sight to see the long line of teams filled with men, 
women, and children, extending across the prairie as far as the eye 
could reach, the flags gaily flying in the morning breeze, and the brass 
instruments of the numerous bands gleaming in the sun. At every 
house and every cross road the procession received accessions, until 
when entering Charleston, it was nearly two miles long. On the out- 
skirts of the town it was met by the citizens of Charleston and the 
delegations from the western part of Coles and the adjoining counties, 
who carried several large and splendid banners, upon one of which 
appeared " Edgar county good for five hundred majority for the Little 
Giant, " and on another, " This government was made forwhitemen — 
Douglas for life. " Passing through the streets of Charleston, the pro- 
cession halted in front of the Union hotel, which was almost hid by 
banners and flags, and here Senator Douglas was welcomed to Char- 
leston by Hon. 0. B. Ficklin in a most eloquent and telling speech, to 



THE CHARLESTON DEBATE 313 

which he responded. The Black Republicans had stationed a band 
at the opposite comer, and when Mr. Ficklin commenced his address 
the' musicians were ordered to play, which they did, preventing the 
people from hearing what was going on ; but this little piece of mali- 
cious fun was soon stopped, and it was with the greatest difficulty 
that the enraged crowd could be prevented from visiting upon the 
offenders a severe mark of their anger. The Black Republicans are 
utterly lost to all sense of shame. At Freeport they insulted Senator 
Douglas, pelting him with watermelon rind and otherwise ill-using 
him, but their indignities were overlooked, and when Lincoln went 
down into Egypt he found himself among gentlemen. Notwith- 
standing his party presumed on their weakness to indulge their malice, 
he was not insulted, but listened to quietly 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, September 21, 1858] 

THE GEEAT TRIUMPH OF THE CAMPAIGN: DEBATE 
BETWEEN LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS AT CHARLESTON 



Twelve to Fifteen Thousands Persons Present.— Lincoln Tomahawks 
His Antag-onist with the Toombs Bill.— Great Rout of the Doug-las- 
ites in the Seventh District.— Killed, Wounded and Missing-.— 
Great Demonstration of the Republican Girls of Charleston, etc., 
cifCtf crc* 

Saturday last was a day to be remembered in the counties of Coles, 
Edgar, Cumberland, Clark, Champaign, Vermilion, etc., — Eastern 
Illinois. According to announcement, the fourth great debate be- 
tween Lincoln and Douglas was " pitched " in the city of Charleston 
at the date before-mentioned, and we risk nothing in saying the joint 
demonstration eclipsed all previous political turn-outs, in the central 
portion of the State. Ottawa and Freeport must trj' again, for while 
the latter perhaps brought a few more listeners to the debate, both 
together would not have made so imposing a display of the etceteras 
of a great campaign. 

On Friday evening the hotels of the town were already crowded to 
excess, and the streets were hung with national flags, banners, and all 
manner of artistic devices which could be pressed into political service. 
Early on Saturday morning the town began to fill up with delegations 
of teams from the adjoining precincts and the surrounding counties. 
A special train from Indiana brought eleven car-loads of interested 
lookers-on from that State. People came on horseback and mule- 



314 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

back, in wagons, in freight trains and on foot — some with badges and 
some with banners, some with their dinners and some without. At 
ten o'clock the streets and the sidewalks around the public square 
were almost impassable, and those who essayed out-doors anywhere 
in the vicinity were well-nigh stifled with dust for their pains. The 
chief decoration of the day was a gigantic banner, eighty feet long, 
hung across the street, from the Court House to a high building on the 
west side of the street. On one side was inscribed : 

COLES COUNTY 
FOUR HUNDRED MAJORITY FOR LINCOLN 

On the reverse was a painting of ''Old Abe Thirty Years Ago," 
driving three yoke of oxen attached to a yawl-like Kentucky wagon. 
This was flanked by two magnificient specimens of the stars and 
stripes. 

Mr. Lincoln and Mr. Douglas both passed the previous night in 
Mattoon. Two processions were started from that thriving town on 
Saturday morning to escort the speakers to Charleston. About half 
past ten another long and imposing procession of carriages, horsemen, 
bands of music, and conspicuous above all, a mammoth car covered 
with white muslin and silk and decorated with wild flowers, bearing a 
huge inscription, "Lincoln, Oglesby, Marshall and Craddock" 
and carrying thirty-two young ladies with banners inscribed with 
names of the States of the Confederacy moved out of Charleston to 
to meet Mr. Lincoln. About an hour afterwards the two Republican 
processions returned together. They constituted without question 
the most formidable array of the campaign. Innumerable banners 
fluttered in the wind farther than the eye could reach through the 
cloud of dust that accompanied them. As they entered the town 
the procession was a mile in length. As compared with it, the Doug- 
las escort was a very puny affair. The car provided for thirty-two 
ladies on that side of the house, somehow contained only fifteen, and 
the majority of these were under eight years of age — suggesting the 
idea of their being Territories rather than States. 

The carriage in which Mr. Lincoln was conveyed was driven to the 
entrance of the Capitol House where Mr. Bromwell, of Charleston, 
made the following reception speech : 

[Here follows speech of Mr. Bromwell] 

Three loud cheers were then given, and a general dispersion took 
place for dinner. Those who partook of the fare of our friend Johnson 



THE CHARLESTON DEBATE 315 

at the Capitol House, were abundantly fortified for the exercises of 
the afternoon. 

It would be impossible to give in our columns a tithe of the interest- 
ing adjimcts and incidents of the day. We will merely add that the 
Republicans of Coles County are a host, and no mistake. 

Mr. Lincoln's Speech 

Mr. Lincoln took the stand at a quarter before three and was greeted 
with vociferous and protracted applause; after which, he said: 
[Mr. Lincohi's opening speech is printed here, followed by Mr. Douglas's reply, 
and finally by Mr. Lincoln's concluding remarks.] 

When Mr. Lincoln had concluded, three cheers were given spon- 
taneously by the vast crowd; after which the people poured out of the 
gates, the carriages and bands of music formed in procession, and the 
whole marched back to the town. 

The evening services at the Court House were commenced by Hon. 
Hugh F. Linder, in a speech of haK an hour. He was followed by a 
dramatic young gentleman of " Spread-Eagle " notoriety from Chicago 
named Merrick. We heard Mr. Merrick only a few moments. He 
was then talking of "Stars shooting madly from their spheres," with 
tragic allusions to a " holocaust " and a rapt view of the " empyrean. " 
We fled with some trepidation to the southwest comer of the square, 
where the Republicans had organized a meeting about four times 
larger than the Douglas performance, and were being addressed by 
Hon. R. J. Oglesby, amid a storm of hurrahs. Mr. Oglesby con- 
tinued speaking in a powerful strain for about two hours, when the 
meeting adjourned, and the " boys " went and serenaded Mr. Lincoln. 
The music was then heard under the windows of "Kansas,"' "Cali- 
fornia,'' "Iowa," etc. far into the dangerous hours, and finally 
vibrated and throbbed itself to rest. And so ended the great day 
at Charleston. 

[Missouri Republican. St. Louis. September 22, 1858] 

THE CAMPAIGN Ds ILLIXOIS 



Joint Debate at Charleston.— Something: about Sidney Breese.— Lincoln 

Reads Trnmbull's Alton Speech 

Charleston, Coles Co., III. 
September 19, ISoS 
The regular meeting for joint discussion between the tall Sucker 



316 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

and the Little Giant came off according to programme yesterday, and 
indeed it turned out to be a glorious occasion for the Democracy. 

Sun up yesterday morning found both of the candidates at Mattoon, 
whence to this town has to be made by horse, when a parade is any- 
thing of a consideration. In this instance the members of both parties 
thinking to do honor to their champion chose such conveyance, they 
doing the honors by getting up for each a procession. "Old Abe" 
started at the head of his crowd early in the morning, he had a fair 
show, but one which might hide its diminished head when that which 
escorted Douglas took the lead. This consisted of a band, thirty-two 
couples, male and female, on horseback, then came the Judge, the 
rear being brought up by seventy-three wagons containing in each 
from two to twelve persons, the rear being supported by a large num- 
ber of horsemen. In this way, receiving constant accessions to their 
numbers, they marched over the ten miles of road, until on the out- 
skirts of this city they were met by the immense delegation sent out 
by the citizens. These mounted in various ways, being headed by a 
van containing thirty-two young ladies dressed in white, with wreathes 
of prairie flowers on their brows, and each bearing a flag inscribed with 
the name of the State represented by her. 

In this magnificent order Senator Douglas was conveyed to the 
hotel, in the front of which Mr. 0. B. Ficklin addressed him in terms 
of welcome. Owing to the fact that these " free speech " Republicans 
set their brazen band players to playing their brass instruments within 
a few yards of the speaker, and kept at that delectable game during 
the continuance of the whole of his speaking, I am unable to convey to 
you the sentiments which he expressed. Feeling, and with propriety, 
that this was rather too much of a good thing, these blow-hards were 
stopped in time to allow that the Senator should reply before the vast 
multitude that had congregated around him, without interruption. 

After dinner had been disposed of, the several parties made their 
way to the rostrum. As the Judge ascended the stand, I was a list- 
ener to a conversation which, being of no private character, I may 
repeat the substance of, as it goes to show the close alliance of the 
bolters with the Black Republican force, and as it corroborates and 
endorses Gov. Reynolds in his published resolution (vide Star of 
Egypt) to vote for Lincoln in preference to Douglas. The Black 
Republican marshal of the day exhibited a letter from Carpenter, of 
Chicago, asking him to make arrangements for a meeting for him to 



THE CHARLESTON DEBATE 317 

speak to, for Tuesday next, and begging of him to announce it from 
the stand. The conversation was relative to any objections which 
Douglas might have to such announcement. The Judge signified his 
willingness, and it was done. The marshal reading the notice from 
the stand that " Carpenter would reply to Douglas. " 

At this time there were certainly no less than ten thousand people 
upon the fair ground, some calculated that there were fifteen thou- 
sand present, and I think there were as likely twelve thousand as ten 
thousand. They were ranged around in semicircular form, the stand 
forming the central line. Mr. Lincoln had the opening. B. B. 

[Chicago Democrat, September 22, 1858] 

FOrRTH GREAT DEBATE BETWEEN LINCOLN AND 
DOUGLAS AT CHARLESTON 



Ten Thousand Persons on the Ground.— The Toombs Bill.— Lincoln 

Strips the Giant Dry 

Charleston, Sept. 18, 1858 
This morning the procession formed at Mattoon for the purpose 
of escorting Lincoln to the county seat. It was led by a band of music 
from Indiana. Following the carriage of Mr. Lincoln was a wagon 
fiUed with young ladies, thirty-two in number, each representing a 
State. The wagon bearing this precious burden of beauty bore this 
significant motto: — 

"Westward thy Star of Empire takes its way, 

Thy Girls Link-on to Lincoln, 
Their Mothers were for Clay. " 

Immediately following was a young lady on horse back, representing 
Kansas, bearing the motto, — " Kansas will be free! " In front of the 
procession was a banner inscribed "Support Abram Lincoln, the 
defender of Henry Clay." 

Arriving at Charleston, a vast throng was found waiting the pro- 
cession, and welcomed it with cheers and huzzas. From the Capitol 
House to the Court House, on the opposite side of the street, a banner 
was stretched, on which was sketched an emigrant wagon, drawn by 
two yoke of oxen, driven by a young stripling, and over the caricature 
the words, "Abe's entrance into Charleston thirty years ago. " When 
it is remembered that thirty years ago Mr. Lincoln emigrated to this 
place from Kentucky, driving his father's team a la the design on the 



318 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

banner, this had peculiar significance. It attracted much attention 
during the day. 

In front of the Capitol House the ceremony of the reception took 
place in the finest and most imposing style. The reception speech was 
made by Hon. H. P. H. Bromwell, and is conceded by all to have been 
a very appropriate and neat speech. It was well received by the 
crowd, and elicited excessive cheering. Mr. Lincoln responded in a 
few remarks well timed and to the point, which inflamed the audience 
with the greatest amount of enthusiasm. 

After dinner the crowd moved to the ground of the Agricultural 
Society to witness the great attraction of the day — the intellectual 
contest between the two great front leaders in Illinois. It proved an 
occasion long to be remembered by both speakers and audience ; — the 
former, because it was the turning point which was to decide important 
points in the campaign, and the latter, because they were to witness a 
great intellectual encounter. Mr. Lincoln was introduced to the 
audience by Dr. Chamberlain. 

In the course of his remarks, Mr. Douglas insinuated the oft- 
exploded charge that Lincoln voted against supplies to our soldiers in 
the Mexican war. This Mr. Lincoln treated in an entirely original, 
but, it must be conceded, very effective manner. Referring to the 
charge, he explained in a concise manner his position upon the war 
question as being the same as that of the Whig party of that day. To 
prove his statement true, he turned to Hon. O. B. Ficklin, who was 
sitting upon the stand, and seizing him by the collar, dragged him by 
main force before the audience, saying "now, Mr. Ficklin, you sat 
by my side the whole time I was in Congress, and know well every 
speech and vote given by me. Now, sir, I want you to tell to this 
audience, the whole truth of the matter. " Mr. Ficklin was an un- 
willing witness indeed, but was in a tight place and could no better 
than go forward and do as he was bidden. He said he was a friend 
to both contending gentlemen, and esteemed them both. He further 
said that Mr. Lincoln gave no material vote different from his own 
on the war question, except to declare it unconstitutional. The effect 
of this performance, as will readily be seen by the reader, was electri- 
cal upon the audience. Douglas met the charge, and instead of get- 
ting out of temper and giving the lie, Lincoln seized Douglas' right 
hand man, made him a witness, and at once nailed the libellous 



1 



THE CHARLESTON DEBATE 319 

charge to the counter. The effect was most powerful; cheer after 
cheer rent the air, testifying the complete triumph of Lincoln over 
this calumny. "Fick" was not a little discomforted, but could do 
no better than meet the issue with fortitude. He had been the 
unwilling instrument in the hands of Lincoln of robbing the Doug- 
lasites of their chief weapon. 

[Special Correspondence New York Evening Post, September 21, 1858] 

SENATORIAL CANVASS IN ILLINOIS 

Charleston, Coles Co., Ills. 
Sept. 18, 1858 
The fourth joint debate between Douglas and Lincoln has just 
closed. Charleston is located on the line of the Terre Haute, Alton, 
and St. Louis Railroad, some ten miles East of the Illinois Central. It 
is a pleasant town of some antiquity for Illinois, and at the center of a 
region which is rather prolific in Republicans. The meeting today 
was larger than the first debate at Ottawa, and almost equal to the 
second debate at Freeport. — This one fact shows the interest which 
this campaign is taking on. Here, in a " rural district " with only one 
railroad and one special train, the turnout of the populace has ranked 
with the great meetings in the thickly settled northern portions of the 
State, intersected by railroads and steamboats routes, all pouring their 
special trains upon a common center. ''The prairies are on fire" 
and all parties partake of the general enthusiasm. 

These demonstrations are in the main alike, but this at Charleston 
has been in some particulars in advance of others. The display of 
banners and mottoes was unusually large. Across the main street 
were suspended three flags bearing Lincoln's name and a huge white 
banner bearing on one side the words, " Coles County for Lincoln " and 
on the other an immense painting representing a man driving a team 
of six horses. This was " Abe " as he appeared thirty years ago, when 
he drove a wagon across the county ; then a poor teamster, unnoticed 
and unknown; now the object of almost idolatrous devotion from the 
people of the same county. Innumerable other banners and devices^ 
expressive of like feeling were carried. 

Mr. Lincoln spent the night at Mattoon, ten miles distant, and was 
escorted thence by the entire town in wagons. From Charleston there 
went forth a large delegation and with it the pleasantest feature of the 



320 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

occasion; a large wagon covered with a canopy, was decorated with 

blue and white cloth, festoons of leaves and wreaths of flowers. 

Inside were thirty-one young ladies, dressed in white; on their blue 

velvet caps were wreaths of green and a silver star. Each young lady 

waved a white banner with the name of a state upon it. Behind was 

a young lady on horseback, bearing the banner "Kansas — I will be 

free. " (I may here remark, in passing, an unfortunate decoration 

for a young lady.) Following her were thirty-one young men on 

horseback. The wagon containing the young ladies had upon one 

side, '^ Lincoln, Oglesby, Marshall, Craddock, " and on the other 

"Westward, the star of Empire takes its way, 
The girls link-on to Lincoln, as their mothers did to Clay. " 

As the procession arrived and made its way through the dense 
crowd the young ladies were greeted with immense cheers, to which 
they responded by waving their banners. Mr. Lincoln in his recep- 
tion speech, gracefully alluded to this spectacle as "a basket of 
flowers. " Mr. Douglas, too, spent the night at Mattoon, and came 
over with his friends. A wagon with thirteen young ladies met him 
in procession and these were followed by thirty-one young ladies on 
horseback, attended by as many gentlemen. Oh! how fearfully 
dusty candidates and cavalcades were when they arrived in front of 
the hotels. The two wagons I have mentioned were drawn upon the 
grounds, where the most intense enthusiasm was manifested at their 
appearance. 

[Illinois State Register, September 23, 1858] 

DOUGLAS AND LINCOLN AT CHARLESTON 



Abraham Tossed Ag-ain 

Charleston, September 18 
Editors State Register: — The Democracy have had a day here that 
will rejoice their hearts as long as their memory shall last, while the 
black republicans will not cease to deplore it as long as they stick to 
their present organization. The conflict between Douglas and Lin- 
coln has turned out most disastrously for the cause of the latter. 
There is but one opinion here, and that is that Lincoln has become 
satisfied that he cannot cope with Douglas. Lincoln had nothing to 
say for himself in this speech, but he repeated the charge made by 
Trumbull and reproduced the falsehoods of that renegade from democ- 



THE CHARLESTON DEBATE 321 

racy. Lincoln has evidently found it up hill business to maintain his 
negro equality doctrines in the neighborhood of the Wabash, and in 
Egypt generally, so he rehearses Trumbull's speeches. 

The gathering of the people have exceeded all expectation. There 
could not have been less than fifteen thousand present. He left 
Mattoon at 8 o'clock in the morning under a numerous escort made up 
of delegates from different counties. In the procession were thirty- 
two young ladies on horseback, each bearing the colors of our country 
— the eagle, stars and stripes. The journey from Mattoon to Charles- 
ton was thirty miles, and throughout its course the procession received 
fresh installments of ardent citizens from almost every house, and at 
the intersection of the highways and byways. Banners appropriate 
to the principles of the party and emblematic of the services of the 
distinguished senator, were numerously displayed along the immense 
line of patriotic citizens who rushed together to do honor to the man 
who stands before the world as the ablest champion of popular 
sovereignty. On reaching Charleston the procession was two miles 
and a half long. It would perhaps gratify you to give the inscriptions 
upon the banners, but they were too numerous for me to copy them 
or even remember them at all. 

The Hon. O. B. Ficklin welcomed the senator in an eloquent and 
pertinent speech, though but few had the pleasure of hearing it as the 
black republicans had stationed a band near for the purpose of drown- 
ing his remarks. The people soon stopped the instruments and Judge 
Douglas made his reception reply without interruption. 

Mr. Lincoln led off the debate. The people listened but they did 
not cheer him. Four fifths of those present were democrats. Scarce- 
ly a cheer greeted him, (though three cheers were accorded for court- 
esy) . He contented himself with repeating the falsehoods of Trumbull 
— falsehoods which Douglas had refuted over and over again. On 
closing there was no applause for him — scarcely a murmer of appro- 
bation from his few friends who had the courage to appear there to 
witness his overthrow. 

Douglas followed, and completely riddled every position taken by 
the black republican candidate for the senate. He again refuted 
Trumbull's falsehoods and exposed the shuffling indirection of Lin- 
coln. I should be glad to give a synopsis of the debate, but must 
close. You may rely on Coles county being all right. B. J. 



322 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

[Chicago Times, September 21, 1858] 

THE AUDIENCE AT CHAELESTON 



Doug-las Has the People with Him 

Of the vast multitude of people in attendance upon the discussion, 
at Charleston, between Douglas and Lincoln, it is entirely safe to say 
that more than three-fourths were Democrats — making the number of 
Douglas's friends on the ground not less, according to the most reason- 
able calculation, than ELEVEN THOUSAND. This proportion of 
Democrats to Republicans was manifest at the first, and throughout 
the debate. While Lincoln was speaking no responses greeted him 
from the crowd; he spoke as well, but no better, than usual, but to 
intelligent citizens of the Democratic persuasion, who exhibited no 
sympathy with or no respect for him. However, as it is the habit of 
Democrats to tolerate in the most respectful manner free speech, he 
was not interrupted or disturbed. But when Douglas commenced 
his reply, the whole assemblage sent up a prolonged and almost 
unanimous shout of applause. The effect on each individual auditor 
was electrical, and the speaker entered into the discussion with great 
energy of manner, and in a style of manly and convincing eloquence. 
In spite of his expressed wish to be allowed to proceed without inter- 
ruption by applauses, at every telling point — and his speech abounded 
with them — the most vociferous and hearty cheers were given. When 
Douglas had finished the people appeared satisfied; many went 
immediately away; and before Lincoln was half through with his 
rejoinder not a quarter of the crowd remained to hear him. He had 
not more than four thousand hearers; it is not believed that he had 
three thousand. We fancy he has had enough of Egypt; and cer- 
tainly Egypt has had enough of him. 

[Chicago Journal, September 20, 1858] 

LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS AT CHARLESTON 

[Special Correspondence of the Chicago Journal] 

Charleston, Coles County, Sept. 18 
This is one of the pleasantest villages that we have ever visited in 
the West. It is the county seat of Coles county, one of the wealthiest 
and most progressive agricultural counties in the State, notwith- 
standing its proximity to Egypt which begins at its Southern limits. 
It is located on The Terre Haute, Alton and St. Louis railroad, and 



THE CHARLESTON DEBATE 323 

only seven miles from Mattoon, the junction of that road with the 
Illinois Central railroad. 

We came up to attend the fourth joint debate between Lincoln and 
Douglas, which takes place here this afternoon, and an account of 
which we should herewith send you, but for the fact that, no train 
leaving Mattoon for Chicago between noon today and the forenoon of 
Monday, it will be impossible to get the letter to you for your Monday's 
issue. We arrived here yesterday, and have been getting acquainted 
with the people and feeling the popular pulse, to ascertain their polit- 
ical feelings. This town and the country around it, have been settled 
principally from Kentucky. Most of the leading men here are Ken- 
tuckians, of the old Henry Clay Whig stamp. Before the organization 
of the Republican party, Coles County gave a strong Whig majority, 
and is now a good Republican county. We find on inquiry that 
almost without exception, the old Kentucky Whigs here are the strongest 
kind of Lincoln men. Mr. Craddock, the Lincoln candidate for the 
Legislature in this Republican district, embracing the counties of 
Coles and Moultrie, will be elected by a majority of not less than six 
hundred. The organization of the Republican party in this county 
and district is perfect, and their plan of operation is worthy of all 
imitation by every other district in the State. They have the name 
and partizan proclivities of every voter "recorded in a book," and 
know just how many Republicans, how many Democrats, and how 
many " doubtfuls, " there are, and where to find them. The work of 
the canvass is progressing with much spirit, and the excitement is 
quite general, for it is nearly all for Lincoln. 

At the present writing the town is rapidly filling up with people from 
the adjoining towns. There will be a great multitude here, to listen to 
the debate. Processions and delegations are now entering the town 
from every direction, with flags, banners and loud hurrahs for " Abe 
Lincoln, " who used to live in this county when a boy. The Lincoln 
men of Charleston have suspended a mammoth banner across the 
street, on which is painted a life sized picture, representing a farmer 
boy driving an ox team, as Lincoln used to do here when a lad. Under 
this is the inscription, " Lincoln as He Was in 1828. " On the other 
side of the banner is the inscription in large letters, "Coles County 
Goes for Lincoln. " This enormous banner, reaching almost across 
the square, is graced at each end with a large American flag. The 
Douglasites have also suspended a flag across the square, but it is a 



324 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

small affair, with the words " welcome douglas " upon it. The town is 
full of Lincoln flags and banners, carried by men and boys, and fast- 
ened to doors, stores and housetops: but the Douglas banners are 
" few and far between. " 

By the way, speaking of those flags that are suspended across the 
square ; we must not neglect to mention an ominous incident that oc- 
curred last evening. The Douglas men saw some Lincoln men on the 
roof of a building on which one of the ends of their flag-rope was 
fastened, and supposing that they were about to throw out the big 
Lincoln banner to the breeze, they immediately scampered up to the 
Court House cupola and attempted to get the start of the Lincoln men 
by getting their flag out first. They strung it out on the flag rope, and 
let it fly to the breeze, when a violent gust of wind struck the flag and 
tangled it over the rope into several knots. This the Republicans 
regarded as emblematical of the tangled-up position into which Lin- 
coln has placed Douglas, and they very naturally gave vent to their 
feelings in shouts, to the great discomfiture of the poor fellows on the 
cupola, who were tugging to get the " kinks " out of their unfortunate 
flag, which they finally, after an hour or two of hard work, succeeded 
in doing, not however without tearing an ugly rent into the cloth. 
This is ominous of the Douglas cause. 

Charleston has a large number of pretty and intelligent ladies, and 
they are all for Lincoln. They have decorated a long wagon with 
flags and inscriptions in which 32 of them (representing the 32 States 
of the Union) will ride in the procession this afternoon. Among the 
appropriate inscriptions on this wagon is the following: 

- "THE GIRLS ALL LINK TO LINCOLN, 
AS THEIR MOTHERS LINKED TO CLAY. " 

The Douglasites tried to get up a similar display, but, to do their 
best, couldn't find more than four women in the town who thought 
enough of Douglas to honor him in this manner. So, despairing of 
this way to honor their champion, the Douglasites went to work and 
got a caricature painted — eminently characteristic of these low-lived 
politicians — representing a white man standing with a negro woman, 
and followed by a negro boy, with the inscription of "Negro 
Equality, " over it. We take it from this, that the Douglas-worship- 
ers of Charleston, like the Douglas editor of the DeKalb Sentinel, are 
in favor of Negro Equality. This is what their banner indicates 
surely. 



THE CHARLESTON DEBATE 325 

Mr. Lincoln was escorted from Mattoon by a Republican procession 
numbering several hundred men and women, in wagons and on horse- 
back, with flags and banners, this morning. It was a triumphal march 
of eleven long miles. Mr. Lincoln stops at the Capitol House, the best 
hotel in the town; and Senator Douglas is the guest of the Union 
House. 

There are several thousand people in the streets, and "still they 
come." The debate takes place at 2 o'clock at the County Fair 
Grounds, about a quarter of a mile West of the village. You shall 
hear from us again on Monday. 

[Peoria Transcript, October 1, 1858] 

Dignity Outraged. — The Charleston (Coles County) Courier relates 
the following incident connected with the debate between Lincoln and 
Douglas in that town: 

As the procession was starting from the pubhc square for the place appointed 
for Lincoln and Douglas to speak — the latter who was riding in a carriage, hav- 
ing been requested by one of the mai'shals to fall in ranks, in the proper place 
as specified, sticks his big gray hat out of the carriage, and with a face swollen 
with rage, or something worse, declared that "he would not be treated with 
such indignity, " "if I can't be treated with respect, I will get out of the pro- 
cession. " The innocent marshal was perfectly thunderstruck — and could not 
divine the cause of such " celestial wrath, " until it was pointed out to him that 
there was in the dim and dusty distance before them a small banner represent- 
ing "Old Abe" with upUfted war club felhng the Little Giant to the ground. 
" Now, in the name of all the gods at once, upon what meat hath this our 
Ceasar fed, that he has grown so great?" 

Mr. Lincoln was caused to pass under a Douglas banner a thousand times 
more disgraceful, and he did not turn round with affected virtuous indignation 
and stop the whole procession with his "dignity," for he knew it had been 
gotten up by some artful Ballard or rickety Rickets, and he passed under it 
with but a smile of indifference or contempt. But for the man who could 
countenance in his own " Register," or Louisville Democrat, the old slanderous 
effigies of Henry Clay, for such a man to be shocked at the sight of "Abe " the 
Giant Killer, is most wondrous strange, indeed. 

[Illinois State Register, September 24, 1858] 

LINCOLN WOULD BE A PATRIOT.— HE RUBS AT THE 

SPOT 

Lincoln put upon a new tack at Charleston. He undertook to play 
the persecuted, and made a defence of what was not charged upon him 
by Douglas — that he voted against supplies to the army in Mexico. 
Our correspondent yesterday gave us an account of Douglas' answer 
to this matter at Sullivan. 



326 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

It is too late in the day for Mr. Abraham Lincoln to set himself up 
as a supporter of the Mexican war. It is not important whether he 
voted for supplies or not. He stood up in his place in the house, 
during the pendency of the negotiations of the treaty with Mexico, and 
in a mountebank harangue, argued, to the best of his ability, that his 
own country was wrong and that his country's enemies were right, 
thereby holding out inducements to the enemy to insist upon more 
rigorous terms in the pending negotiations. 

At Charleston he called upon Mr. Ficklin to help him out of the 
drag. That gentleman came upon the stand, and, instead of making 
Mr. Lincoln's " spot " more comfortable, testified that Mr. L. voted for 
the Ashum resolutions, declaring the war to be unjust and unconstitu- 
tional. He stood alone in the Illinois delegation in giving that vote. 
The resolution was introduced and voted for no other purpose than 
to cripple the country in negotiating a peace. If it was not this what 
was it for? The war had begun, battles had been fought, American 
blood had flowed like water, and for what good or patriotic purpose 
could Mr. Lincoln have joined the abolitionists in making a record for 
the enemy's benefit? He did give that monstrous vote, and many 
others like it, however, but now attempts to pettifog out of it by deny- 
ing something that Douglas had not charged upon him. Lincoln, and 
the Massachussetts abolitionists who led him, were determined that in 
the treaty of peace our country should come off without advantage — 
that we should not acquire Mexican territory as indemnity for the 
outrages put upon us, in order that the crew of sectionalists with whom 
he acted might make party capital. They would have robbed their 
country of its just rights, blotted its escutcheon, and branded with 
infamy all who maintained the justice of the war, to secure that great 
end of politicians of his class — power and spoils. Mr. A. Lincoln was 
the humble catspaw of these sectionalists, and most faithfully has he 
followed up his service in the same line of policy for the benefit of the 
same political interest. 

It was in support of this policy that he joined with the enemies of 
Clay in the whig ranks, and contributed to the ruling out of the great 
whig chieftain by substituting the leader in that "proslavery raid," 
the Mexican war, as the Chicago Tribune has termed it, in place of Mr. 
Clay, who could not be made the supple instrument of the abolition 
wing of the whig party, to which Mr. Lincoln attached himself, and 



THE CHARLESTON DEBATE 327 

which affiliation he showed in his famous, or rather infamous " spotty " 
speech. 

Mr. Lincoln cannot quibble out of the odium of his unpatriotic 
course in regard to the Mexican war, by begging the question upon 
votes of supplies. He showed by his congressional course that he was 
as serviceable an ally of Mexico as if he had met his countrymen — his 
constituents — upon Mexican soil, with a Mexican musket, to welcome 
them with " bloody hands to hospitable graves, " as Corwin hoped they 
would be. 

We have heretofore given our readers his record, at length, on this 
question. His course is familiar to the people of the whole state, espe- 
cially to our older residents, and it is only surprising that Mr. Lincoln 
should have ventured to dig it up in a county where there are so many 
who participated in that " unjust war, " as he and the abolitionists pro- 
claimed it ! We can only account for it in the fact that he had to play 
a delicate part in Coles, to hide himself on the slavery question and in 
his trepidation and his desire to find other subjects of comment 
blundered from Scylla upon Gharybdis. He run upon his most 
odious " spot, " which brought upon him the expose of his Mexican 
record by Douglas at Sullivan. 

In his course in relation to the Mexican war Mr. Lincoln only vented 
that abolition feeling, which has culminated in his avowal that he 
favors the doctrine of the equality of the negroes with the whites. 
Abolitionism then, as now, was the basis of his political creed. 

[Chicago Journal, September 21, 1858] 

THE FOURTH JOINT DEBATE BETWEEN LINCOLN AND 

DOUGLAS 

(Special correspondence of the Journal) 

Charleston, Coles Co., Sept. 20 
Saturday was at great day in Charleston. There were not less than 
twelve thousand people present, from the adjacent towns and counties, 
to hear the fourth joint debate between Lincoln and Douglas. The 
streets of the village were filled with a perfect tide of humanity,-surging 
to and fro, and immediately after dinner the tide flowed out to the 
County Fair Grounds, where the debate took place. 

The reception that was given to Mr. Lincoln on his arrival, by the 
Republicans of Charleston, was most cordial and enthusiastic. Mr. 
Bromwell, on behalf of the Republicans of Charleston, made an 



328 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

eloquent speech of welcome, to which Mr. Lincoln responded briefly, 
but in befitting terms; after which our noble leader was perfectly 
overwhelmed with the warm greetings of the thousands of good 
friends who had come to see and hear him. 

The debate, in the afternoon, was opened by Mr. Lincoln, who, on 
taking the stand, was vociferously cheered. 



CHAPTER IX 

THE GALESBURG DEBATE 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, October 2, 1858] 

THE GALESBURG DEBATE 

Galesburg, Iowa, Sept. 29, 1858 
Editors Press and Tribune: Please inform the readers of your 
paper the time of the debate between Lincoln and Douglas at Gales- 
burg on the 7th of October. Will it be in the day time or evening, 
and at what hour. Many Republicans from Muscatine will be there. 
Insert notice in paper and oblige, Yours truly, 

G. W. V. 
(The previous debates have all commenced at 2 p. m. and we believe 
that is the hour fixed on by the Galesburg committees. — Eds. P. & T.) 

[Burlington, Iowa, State Gazette, September 30, 1858] 

DOUGLAS AT GALESBURG 

Douglas and Lincoln will address the people at Galesburg on Thurs- 
day the 7th of October. Persons desiring to be present on the occasion 
can do so at a small expense via the Burlington & M. RR. and Chicago 
& Quincy Railroad. Tickets to Galesburg and back — half fare — good 
for the 7th and 8th on regular trains. 

We hope to see a large delegation from Iowa on that occasion. 
Those coming from towns west of us had better avail themselves of 
the afternoon train on the 6th in order to make sure of connection. 
Tickets can be had at any of the Railroad ticket offices. 

[Peoria, III., Transcript, October 1, 1858] 

THE NEXT GREAT DEBATE BETWEEN LINCOLN AND 

DOUGLAS 

The next great debate between Lincoln and Douglas comes off at 
Galesburg, on Thursday next, the 7th of October, and will attract the 
largest crowd that has yet assembled to listen to the joint discussions 
between the two great political champions. It is estimated that not 

329 



330 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

less than 25,000 persons will be in attendance, and the citizens of 
Galesburg are making extensive preparations for the event. 

The Peoria, Oquawka and Burlington Railroad are prepared to 
accommodate all who may desire to pass over their road to attend 
this great debate. An extra train will leave this city at 8^ in the morn- 
ing, and returning, leave Galesburg at 6 o'clock in the afternoon. 
Peoria ought to furnish at least 3,000 persons for this train. Let there 
be a general pouring out of our citizens. We urge our Republican 
friends, in particular, to be on hand. An extraordinary effort will be 
made by the Douglas-worshippers to get out the largest crowd for the 
occasion. The decided advantage which Mr. Lincoln has heretofore 
gained over his antagonist in these joint debates, has exasperated them 
to such an extent that no pains will be spared at Galesburg to regain 
their lost grounds by giving Douglas as large a number of sympathizers 
in the audience as possible, who will be desperate in their enthusiasm 
to the last degree. But the Republican party throughout this section 
is confident and spirited, and Old Abe will meet with a reception next 
Thursday, which, in point of zeal and magnificence will far excel any- 
thing of the kind ever before witnessed in the West. 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, October 5, 1858] 

THE GALESBURG DEBATE.-A WORD TO THE COM- 
MITTEE OF ARRANGEMENTS 

The fifth public debate between Lincoln and Douglas comes off at 
Galesburg on Thursday next. We observe from our exchanges in that 
quarter that preparations are being made for an immense crowd. A 
special train will leave this city from the Central Depot on Thursday 
morning at six o'clock, reaching Galesburg at 1 :25 p. m. Fare for the 
round trip six dollars. 

In this connection we desire to say a word to the Committee of 
Arrangements for the debate. At none of the previous discussions 
have there been any adequate accommodations for reporters. It is 
not a fact that two chairs and a wash-stand eighteen inches square are 
sufficient furniture for half a dozen men to work on, nor is it always 
convenient to make a battle against a mob of excited politicians, when 
the fighting editor is at home. In behalf of ourselves and such other 
representatives of the press as may be represented, may we request 
that arrangements be made for at least six reporters — that the chairs 
and tables be placed where they will not be jarred or overthrown by the 



THE GALESBURG DEBATE 331 

people on the platform and where there will be no room for persona 
to crowd between the reporters and the speakers — and that somebody 
with authority and physical strength enough to secure obedience, be 
appointed to keep loafers out of the reporting corner. These things 
are absolutely essential to the accuracy of the reports. 

[Galesburg Democrat, October 6, 1858] 

We learn that the Republican delegations will arrive tomorrow, as 
near as possible, in the following order: 

Knoxville delegation will come with Lincoln, at half-past 11 a. m., 
down Main street. Galesburg escort will meet them about a mile from 
the square. 

Mercer county delegation will come in from the west, on Main street. 

Cameron and adjoining towns will come in from the southwest at 
12 o'clock. 

Monmouth delegation on 12 o'clock train. 

Abingdon delegation on 10 o'clock train, and some in carriages. 

Henderson, Oneida, Victoria, Rio and Wataga delegations will enter 
the city from the east on Main street, at about 12 m. 

Train from Chicago and intermediate stations arrives at 1 :25. 

Train from Peoria at 12 m. 

[Galesburg, III., Democrat, October 4, 1858] 
[For the Galesburg Democrat] 

Messrs. Editors: — Yesterday as I was passing along Main street I 
overheard two Douglas men engaged in what I supposed to be earnest 
conversation. I heard this remark — " Let us take him to the Bonney 
House, for we can get a Horn there if we want it. " From what ap- 
peared afterward the said gentlemen were going to meet the little giant 
at the cars, he being on his way to Oquawka and was to stop over in 
the city till Monday. It seems Mr. Douglas and his friends like almost 
any sort of a horn except one spoken of by Prentice in the Louisville 
Journal, to wit; one offered to them by a certain Trum-B\i\\ who turns 
up occasionally in different parts of this State. 

One word in regard to the reception of Mr. Douglas. It was whis- 
pered around among a certain few that the Little Giant would arrive 
on the Peoria train at two o'clock. A self-appointed committee, num- 
bering three persons, having hoisted their colors, straightened their 
hair and mustaches and wiped the last horn off their lips with their 
coat sleeves, made tracks for the depot. As soon as the cars stopped 



332 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

the committee rushed into the hind car; Judge Douglas was visible and 
G. W. Ford said, " How d'ye do Mr. D., " as natural as possible. Mr. 
D. replied, "I am tolerable!" The rest of the Committee then went 
through the same performance, each one closing up, saying "this is 
fine weather, " then squirting a little tobacco juice and looking side- 
wise at Mr. D. A sort of procession was now formed consisting of one 
carriage and 18 or 20 persons on foot; among the pedestrians I ob- 
terved 3 colored boys who seemed to be perfectly at home. Mr. 
Douglas had on a white hat and coat. This imposing spectacle then 
moved on, led by the committee to Anthony's lumber yard, thence 
down to Main street, thence to the Bonney House. 

Here was an imposing spectacle. Little Mr. Douglas and his large 
white hat went into the Bonney House parlor, followed by several of 
the committee and the aforesaid colored boys. All the faithful in the 
city had by this time collected and one of them went so far as to pro- 
pose a cheer, but Mr. D. saying at about this time that he would like 
some water to wash himself with, put a sudden stopper on this, and as 
he rose up to go to the wash room he turned round and smiled very 
benignly upon the crowd, to reciprocate which, the negro boys gave 
several stamps upon the floor and sidewalk. 

After Mr. D. had washed he retired to a private room followed by 
Mr. Ford and Jim Davidson, and further deponent saith not, but it is 
reported around town this morning that Mr. D. asked Mr. Ford if it 
was true that he (Ford) did make an amalgamation speech at the 
Cable celebration in this city? 

In this connection it may be well to say that the Railroad company 
sent up an_extra to bring Mr. D., and charged only half fare for the 6 
or 8 persons who came with him on the train. The most of said per- 
sons when last seen were in the neighborhood of a Bologna sausage 
shop on Boone Avenue where they probably stuffed themselves until 
they became perfectly torpid, in which state they will probably be 
shipped to Peoria as freight today. 

BUCCANNEER 

Monday, October 4, 1858 



DOUGLAS AT GALESBURG 333 

FIFTH JOINT DEBATE 

Galesburg, October 7, 1858 



Mr. Doug-las's Speech 

When the Senator appeared on the stand he was greeted with three 
tremendous cheers. He said : 

Ladies and Gentlemen : Four years ago I appeared before the people 
of Knox County for the purpose of defending my political action upon 
the Compromise Measures of 1850 and the passage of the Kansas- 
Nebraska bill. Those of you before me who were present then will re- 
member that I vindicated myself for supporting those two measures 
by the fact that they rested upon the great fundamental principle that 
the people of each State and each Territory of this Union have the 
right, and ought to be permitted to exercise the right, of regulating 
their own domestic concerns in their own way, subject to no other 
limitation or restriction than that which the Constitution of the United 
States imposes upon them. I then called upon the people of Illinois to 
decide whether that principle of self-government was right or wrong. 
If it was and is right, then the Compromise Measures of 1850 were 
right, and consequently, the Kansas and Nebraska bill, based upon the 
same principle, must necessarily have been right. ["That's so," and 
cheers.] 

The Kansas and Nebraska bill declared, in so many words, that it 
was the true intent and meaning of the Act not to legislate slavery into 
any State or Territory, nor to exclude it therefrom, but to leave the 
people thereof perfectly free to form and regulate their domestic insti- 
tutions in their own way, subject only to the Constitution of the United 
States. For the last four years I have devoted all my energies, in 
private and public, to commend that principle to the American people. 
Whatever else may be said in condemnation or support of my politi- 
cal course. I apprehend that no honest man will doubt the fidelity 
with which, under all circumstances, I have stood by it. 

During the last year a question arose in the Congress of the United 
States whether or not that principle would be violated by the admission 
of Kansas into the Union under the Lecompton Constitution. In my 
opinion, the attempt to force Kansas in under that constitution was a 
gross violation of the principle enunciated in the Compromise Meas- 
ures of 1850, and Kansas and Nebraska bill of 1854, and therefore I led 
off in the fight against the Lecompton Constitution, and conducted it 



334 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

until the effort to carry that constitution through Congress was aban- 
doned. And I can appeal to all men, friends and foes, Democrats and 
Republicans, Northern men and^ Southern men, that during the whole 
of that fight I carried the banner of Popular Sovereignty aloft, and 
never allowed it to trail in the dust, or lowered my flag until victory 
perched upon our arms. [Cheers.] 

When the Lecompton Constitution was defeated, the question arose 
in the minds of those who had advocated it what they should next re- 
sort to in order to carry out their views. They devised a measure 
known as the English bill, and granted a general amnesty and political 
pardon to all men who had fought against the Lecompton Constitu- 
tion, provided they would support that bill. I for one did not choose 
to accept the pardon, or to avail myself of the amnesty granted on 
that condition. The fact that the supporters of Lecompton were will- 
ing to forgive all differences of opinion at that time in the event those 
who opposed it favored the English bill, was an admission^ they did 
not think that opposition to Lecompton impaired a man's standing in 
the Democratic party. 

Now, the question arises. What was that English bill which certain 
men are now attempting to make a test of political orthodoxy in this 
country? It provided, in substance, that the Lecompton Constitution 
should be sent back to the people of Kansas for their adoption or rejec- 
tion, at an election which was held in August last, and in case they 
refused admission under it, that Kansas should be kept out of the 
Union until she had 93,420 inhabitants. I was in favor of sending the 
constitution back in order to enable the people to say whether or not it 
was their act and deed, and embodied their will; but the other proposi- 
tion, that if they refused to come into the Union under it, they should 
be kept out until they had double or treble the population they then 
had, I never would sanction by my vote. The reason why I could not 
sanction it is to be found in the fact that by the English bill, if the 
people of Kansas had only agreed to become a slaveholding State un- 
der the Lecompton Constitution, they could have done so with 35,000 
people, but if they insisted on being a Free State, as they had a right to 
do, then they were to be punished by being kept out of the union until 
they had nearly three times that population. I then said in my place 
in the Senate, as I now say to you, that whenever Kansas has popula- 

lOmitled. 

^Inserts "that" after "admission." 



DOUGLAS AT GALESBURG 335 

tion enough for a Slave State, she has population enough for a Free 
State. ["That's it," and cheers.] I have never yet given a vote, and 
I never intend to record one, making an odious and unjust distinction 
between the different States of this Union. [Applause.] I hold it to 
be a fundamental principle in our Republican form of government that 
all the States of this Union, old and new, free and slave, stand on an 
exact equality. 

Equality among the different States is a cardinal principle on which 
all our institutions rest. Wherever, therefore, you make a discrimina- 
tion saying to a Slave State that it shall be admitted with 35,000 in- 
habitants, and to a Free State that it shall not be admitted until it has 
93,000 or 100,000 inhabitants, you are throwing the whole weight of 
the Federal Government into the scale in favor of one class of States 
against the other. Nor would I, on the other hand, any sooner sanc- 
tion the doctrine that a Free State could be admitted into the Union 
with 35,000 people, while a Slave State was kept out until it had 93 ,000. 
I have always declared in the Senate my willingness, and I am willing 
now to adopt the rule, that no Territory shall ever become a State until 
it has the requisite population for a member of Congress, according to 
the then existing ratio. But while I have always been, and am now, 
willing to adopt that general rule, I was not willing and would not con- 
sent to make an exception of Kansas, as a punishment for her obsti- 
nacy in demanding the right to do as she pleased in the formation of her 
constitution. It is proper that I should remark here, that my opposi- 
tion to the Lecompton Constitution did not rest upon the peculiar 
position taken by Kansas on the subject of slavery. I held then, and 
hold now, that if the people of Kansas want a Slave State, it is their 
right to make one, and be received into the Union under it; if, on the 
contrary, they want a Free State, it is their right to have it, and no 
man should ever oppose their admission because they ask it under the 
one or the other. I hold to that great principle of self-government 
which asserts the right of every people to decide for themselves the 
nature and character of the domestic institutions and fundamental 
law under which they are to live. 

The effort has been and is now being made in this State by certain 
postmasters and other Federal office-holders to make a test of faith on 
the support of the English bill. These men are now making speeches 
all over the State against me and in favor of Lincoln, either directly or 
indirectly, because I would not sanction a discrimination between 



336 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Slave and Free States by voting for the English bill. But while that 
bill is made a test in Illinois for the purpose of breaking up the Demo- 
cratic organization in this State, how is it in the other States? Go to 
Indiana, and there you find English himself, the author of the English 
bill, who is a candidate for re-election to Congress, has been forced by 
public opinion to abandon his own darling project, and to give a prom- 
ise that he will vote for the admission of Kansas at once, whenever she 
forms a constitution in pursuance of law, and ratifies it by a majority 
vote of her people. Not only is this the case with English himself, but 
I am informed that every Democratic candidate for Congress in Indi- 
ana takes the same ground. Pass to Ohio, and there you find that 
Groesbeck, and Pendleton, and Cox, and all the other anti-Lecompton 
men who stood shoulder to shoulder with me against the Lecompton 
Constitution, but voted for the English bill, now repudiate it and take 
the same ground that I do on that question. So it is with the Joneses 
and others of Pennsylvania, and so it is with every other Lecompton 
Democrat in the Free States. They now abandon even the English bill, 
and come back to the true platform which I proclaimed at the time in 
the Senate, and upon which the Democracy of Illinois now stands. 

And yet, notwithstanding the fact that every Lecompton and anti- 
Lecompton Democrat in the Free States has abandoned the English 
bill, you are told that it is to be made a test upon me, while the power 
and patronage of the Government are all exerted to elect men to Con- 
gress in the other States who occupy the same position with reference to it 
that I do. It seems that my political offense consists in the fact that I 
first did not vote for the English bill, and thus pledge myself to keep 
Kansas out of the Union until she has a population of 93,420, and then 
return home, violate that pledge, repudiate the bill, and take the oppo- 
site ground. If I had done this, perhaps the Administration would 
now be advocating my re-election, as it is that of the others who have 
pursued this course. I did not choose to give that pledge, for the reason 
that I did not intend to carry out that principle. I never will consent, 
for the sake of conciliating the frowns of power, to pledge myself to do 
that which I do not intend to perform. I now submit the question to 
you, as my constituency, whether I was not right, first, in resisting the 
adoption of the Lecompton constitution, and secondly, in resisting the 
English bill. [An universal "Yes" from the crowd.] I repeat that I 
opposed the Lecompton Constitution because it was not the act and 
deed of the people of Kansas, and did not embody their will. I denied 



DOUGLAS AT GALESBURG 337 

the right of any power on earth, under our system of government, to 
force a constitution on an unwilling people. [''Hear, hear; that's the 
doctrine ; " and cheers.] There was a time when some men could pre- 
tend to believe that the Lecompton Constitution embodied the will of 
the people of Kansas; but that time has passed. The question was re- 
ferred to the people of Kansas under the English bill last August, and 
then, at a fair election, they rejected the Lecompton Constitution by a 
vote of from eight to ten against it to one in its favor. Since it has been 
voted down by so overwhelming a majority no man can pretend that it 
was the act and deed of that people. [" That's so, " and cheers.] 

I submit the question to you whether or not, if it had not been for 
me, that constitution would have been crammed down the throats of 
the people of Kansas against their consent. ["It would, it would;" 
"Hurrah for Douglas;" "Three cheers for Douglas," etc.] While at 
least ninety-nine out of every hundred people here present agree that I 
was right in defeating that project, yet my enemies use the fact that I 
did defeat it by doing right, to break me down and put another man in 
the United States Senate in my place. [" No, no, you'll be returned; " 
three cheers, etc.] The very men who acknowledge that I was right 
in defeating Lecompton, now form an alliance with Federal office- 
holders, professed Lecompton men, to defeat me, because I did right. 
[" It can't be done. "] My political opponent, Mr. Lincoln, has no 
hope on earth, and has never dreamed that he had a chance of success, 
were it not for the aid that^ he is receiving from Federal office-holders, 
who are using their influence and the patronage of the Government 
against me in revenge for my having defeated the Lecompton Consti- 
tution. [" Hear him, " and applause.] 

What do you Republicans think of a political organization that will 
try to make an unholy and unnatural combination with its professed 
foes to beat a man merely because he has done right? [" Shame on it. "] 
You know that^ such is the fact with regard to your own party. You 
know that the axe of decapitation is suspended over every man in office 
in Illinois, and the terror^ of proscription is threatened every Demo- 
crat by the present Administration, unless he supports the Republican 
ticket in preference to my Democratic associates and myself. [" The 
people are with you, let them threaten, " etc.] I could find an instance 

•■Omits "that." 
20mits"that." 
^Reads: "terrors" for "terror." 



338 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

in the postmaster of the city of Galesburg, and in every other post- 
master in this vicinity, all of whom have been stricken down simply 
because they discharged the duties of their offices honestly, and sup- 
ported the regular Democratic ticket in this State in the right. The 
Republican party is availing itself of every unworthy means in the 
present contest to carry the election, because its leaders know that if 
they let this chance slip they will never have another, and their hopes 
of making this a Republican State will be blasted forever. 

Now, let me ask you whether the country has any interest in sus- 
taining this organization known as the Republican party. That party 
is unlike all other political organizations in this country. All other 
parties have been national in their character, — have avowed their 
principles alike in the Slave and Free^ States, in Kentucky, as well as 
Illinois, in Louisiana as well as in Massachusetts. Such was the case 
with the old Whig party, and such was and is the case with the Demo- 
cratic party. Whigs and Democrats could proclaim their principles 
boldly and fearlessly in the North and in the South, in the East and 
in the West, wherever the Constitution ruled, and the American flag 
waved over American soil. 

But now you have a sectional organization, a party which appeals 
to the Northern section of the Union against the Southern, a party 
which appeals to Northern passion, Northern pride. Northern ambi-^ 
tion,2 Northern prejudices, against Southern people, the Southern 
States, and Southern institutions. The leaders of that party hope that 
they will be able to unite the Northern States in one great sectional 
party; and inasmuch as the North is the strongest section, that they 
will thus be enabled to out-vote, conquer, govern and control the 
South. Hence you find that they now make speeches advocating 
principles and measures which cannot be defended in any slaveholding 
State of this Union. Is there a Republican residing in Galesburg who 
can travel into Kentucky and carry his principles with him across the 
Ohio? ["No."] What Republican from Massachusetts can visit the 
Old Dominion without leaving his principles behind him when he crosses 
Mason and Dixon's line? Permit me to say to you in perfect good 
humor, but in all sincerity, that no political creed is sound which can- 
not be proclaimed fearlessly in every State of this Union where the 

ilnserts "the" before "Free." 
ainserts "and" after "ambition." 



DOUGLAS AT GALESBURG 339 

Federal Constitution is^ the supreme law of the land. ["That's so, " 
and cheers.] 

Not only is this Republican party unable to proclaim its principles 
alike in the North and in the South, in the Free States and in the Slave 
States, but it cannot even proclaim them in the same forms and give 
them the same strength and meaning in all parts of the same State. 
My friend Lincoln finds it extremely difficult to manage a debate in the 
center part of the State, where there is a mixture of men from the 
North and the South. In the extreme northern part of Illinois he can 
proclaim as bold and radical Abolitionism as ever Giddings, Lovejoy, 
or Garrison enunciated ; but when he gets down a little farther south he 
claims that he is an Old Line Whig, [great laughter] a disciple of Henry 
Clay ["Singleton says he defeated Clay's nomination for the presi- 
dency, " and cries of "That's so. "] and declares that he still adheres to 
the Old Line Whig creed, and has nothing whatever to do with Aboli- 
tionism, or negro equality, or negro citizenship. [" Hurrah for Doug- 
las. "] I once before hinted this of Mr. Lincoln^- in a public speech, 
and at Charleston he defied me to show that there was any difference 
between his speeches in the North and in the South, and that they were 
not in strict harmony. I will now call your attention to two of them, 
and you can then say whether you would be apt to believe that the 
same man ever uttered both. [Laughter and cheers.] In a speech in 
reply to me at Chicago in July last, Mr. Lincoln in speaking of the 
equality of the negro with the white man used the following language : 

" t should like to know if, taking this old Declaration of Independence, which 
declares that all men are equal upon principle, and making exceptions to it, 
where will it stop? If one man says it does not mean a negro, why may not 
anotherman say it does not mean another man ? [Laughter.] If the Declar- 
ation is not the truth, let us get the statute book in which we find it, and tear 
it out. Who is so bold as to do it? If it is not true, let us tear it out. " 

You find that Mr. Lincoln there proposed that if the doctrine of the 
Declaration of Independence, declaring all men to be born equal, did 
not include the negro and put him on an equality with the white man, 
that we should take the statute book and tear it out. [Laughter and 
cheers.] He there took the ground that the negro race is included in 
the Declaration of Independence as the equal of the white race, and 
that there could be no such thing as a distinction in the races, making 

^Inserts "not" after "is." 
'Reads: "Lincoln's" for "Lincoln." 



340 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

one superior and the other inferior. I read now from the same 
speech : — 

"My friends [he says], I have detained you about as long as I desire to do, 
and I have only to say, let us discard all this quibbling about this man and the 
other man, this race and that race and the other race being inferior, and there- 
fore they must be placed in an inferior position, discarding our standard that 
we have left us. Let us discard all these things, and unite as one people 
throughout this land, until we shall once more stand up declaring that all men 
are created equal." ["That's right," etc.] 

Yes, I have no doubt that you think it is right; but the Lincoln men 
down in Coles, Tazewell, and Sangamon counties do not think it is 
right. [Immense applause and laughter. " Hit, hit again, " etc.] In 
the conclusion of the same speech, talking to the Chicago Abolitionists, 
he said : " I leave you, hoping that the lamp of liberty will burn in your 
bosoms until there shall no longer be a doubt that all men are created 
free and equal. " [" Good, good, " " Shame, " etc.] Well, you say good 
to that, and you are going to vote for Lincoln because he holds that 
doctrine. [" That's so. "] I will not blame you for supporting him on 
that ground; but I will show you, in immediate contrast with that 
doctrine, what Mr. Lincoln said down in Egypt in order to get votes in 
that locality, where they do not hold to such a doctrine. In a joint 
discussion between Mr. Lincoln and myself, at Charleston, I think, on 
the 18th of last month, Mr. Lincoln, referring to this subject, used the 
following language : — 

" I will say, then, that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing 
about in any way the social and poUtical equality of the white and black races ; 
that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of making voters of the free negroes, 
or jurors, or qualifying them to hold office, or having them to marry with white 
people. I will say, in addition, that there is a physical difference between the 
white and black races which, I suppose, will forever forbid the two races living 
together upon terms of social and political equality; and inasmuch as they 
cannot so hve, that while they do remain together there must be the position of 
superior and inferior, that I, as much as any other man, am in favor of the su- 
perior position being assigned to the white man. " ["Good for Mr. Lincoln. "] 

Fellow-citizens, here you find men hurrahing for Lincoln, and saying 
that he did right, when in one part of the State he stood up for negro 
equality; and in another part, for political effect, discarded the doc- 
trine, and declared that there always must be a superior and inferior 
race. [" They are not men. Put them out, " etc.] Abolitionists up 
North are expected and required to vote for Lincoln because he goes 



DOUGLAS AT GALESBURG 341 

for the equality of the races, holding that by the Declaration of Inde- 
pendence the white man and the negro were created equal, and en- 
dowed by the divine law with that equality ; and down South he tells 
the Old Whigs, the Kentuckians, Virginians, and Tennesseeans, that 
there is a physical difference in the races, making one superior and the 
other inferior, and that he is in favor of maintaining the superiority 
of the white race over the negro. 

Now, how can you reconcile those two positions of Mr. Lincoln? He 
is to be voted for in the South as a pro-slavery man, and he is to be 
voted for in the North as an Abolitionist. [" Give it to him. " " Hit 
him again. "] Up here he thinks it is all nonsense to talk about a dif- 
ference between the races, and says, that we must " discard all quib- 
ling about this race and that race and the other race being inferior, and 
therefore they must be placed in an inferior position. " Down South he 
makes this " quibble " about this race and that race and the other race 
being inferior as the creed of his party, and declares that the negro can 
never be elevated to the position of the white man. You find that his 
political meetings are called by different names in different counties in 
the State. Here they are called Republican meetings ; but in old Taze- 
well, where Lincoln made a speech last Tuesday, he did not address a 
Republican meeting, but " a grand rally of the Lincoln men. " [Great 
laughter.] There are very few Republicans there, because Tazewell 
County is filled with old Virginians and Kentuckians, all of whom are 
Whigs or Democrats; and if Mr. Lincoln had called an Abolition or 
Republican meeting there, he would not get many votes. [Laughter.] 

Go down into Egypt, and you find that he and his party are opera- 
ting under an alias there, which his friend Trumbull has given them in 
order that they may cheat the people. When I was down in Monroe 
County a few weeks ago, addressing the people, I saw handbills posted 
announcing that Mr. Trumbull was going to speak in behalf of Lincoln 
and what do you think the name of his party was there? Why the 
" Free Democracy. " [Great laughter.] Mr. Trumbull and Mr. Jehu 
Baker were announced to address the Free Democracy of Monroe 
County, and the bill was signed, " Many Free Democrats. " The reason 
that Lincoln and his party adopted the name of " Free Democracy " 
down there was because Monroe County has always been an old-fash- 
ioned Democratic county, and hence it was necessary to make the 
people believe that they were Democrats, sympathized with them, and 
were fighting for Lincoln as Democrats. ["That's it," etc.] 



342 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Come up to Springfield, where Lincoln now lives and always has 
lived, and you find that the Convention of his part}' which assembled 
to nominate candidates for Legislature, who are expected to vote for 
him if elected, dare not adopt the name of Republican, but assembled 
under the title of " all opposed to the Democracy, " [Laughter and 
cheers.] Thus you find that Mr. Lincoln's creed cannot travel through 
even one half of the counties of this state, but that it changes its 
hues and becomes lighter and lighter as it travels from the extreme 
north, until it is nearly white when it reaches the extreme south end 
of the State. [" That's so, " " It's true, " etc.] 

I ask you, my friends, why cannot Republicans avow their principles 
alike everywhere? I would despise myself if I thought that I was pro- 
curing your votes by concealing my opinions, and by avowing one set 
of principles in one part of the State, and a different set in another 
part. If I do not truly and honorably represent your feelings and 
principles, then I ought not to be your senator; and I will never con- 
ceal my opinions, or modify or change them a hair's breadth, in order 
to get votes. I will^ tell you that this Chicago doctrine of Lincoln's — 
declaring that the negro and the white man are made equal by the 
Declaration of Independence and by Divine Providence — is a mon- 
strous heresy. [" That's so, " and terrible applause.] The signers of 
the Declaration of Independence never dreamed of the negro when they 
were writing that document. They referred to white men, to men of 
European birth and European descent, when they declared the equal- 
ity of all men. I see a gentleman there in the crowd shaking his head. 
Let me remind him that when Thomas Jefferson wrote that document, 
he was the owner, and so continued until his death, of a large number 
of slaves. Did he intend to say in that Declaration that his negro 
slaves, which he held and treated as property, were created his equals 
by divine law, and that he was violating the law of God every day of 
his life by holding them as slaves? [" No, no. "] It must be borne in 
mind that when that Declaration was put forth, every one of the thir- 
teen Colonies, were slaveholding Colonies, and every man who signed 
that instrument represented a slaveholding constituency. Recollect, 
also, that no one of them emancipated his slaves, much less put them 
on an equality with himself, after he signed the Declaration. On the 
contrary, they all continued to hold their negroes as slaves during the 
Revolutionary War. Now, do you believe — are you willing to have it 

i Omits "will." 



DOUGLAS AT GALESBURG 343 

said — that every man who signed the Declaration of Independence de- 
clared the negro his equal, and then was hypocrite enough to continue 
to hold him as a slave, in violation of what he believed to be the 
divine law? [" No, no. "] And yet when you say that the Declara- 
tion of Independence includes the negro you charge the signers of 
it with hypocrisy. 

I say to you frankly, that in my opinion this Government was made 
by our fathers on the white basis. It was made by white men for the 
benefit of white men and their posterity forever, and was intended to 
be administered by white men in all time to come. [" That's so, " and 
cheers.] But while I hold that under our Constitution and political 
system the negro is not a citizen, cannot be a citizen, and ought not to 
be a citizen, it does not follow by any means that he should be a 
slave. On the contrary, it does follow that the negro, as an inferior 
race, ought to possess every right, every privilege, every immunity, 
which he can safely exercise, consistent with the safety of the society 
in which he lives. ["That's so," and cheers.] Humanity requires, 
and Christianity commands, that you shall extend to every inferior 
being, and every dependent being, all the privileges, immunities, and 
advantages which can be granted to them, consistent with the safety 
of society. If you ask me the nature and extent of these privileges, 
I answer that that is a question which the people of each State must 
decide for themselves. [" That's it. "] Illinois has decided that 
question for herself. We have said that in this State the negro shall 
not be a slave, nor shall he be a citizen; Kentucky holds a different 
doctrine. New York holds one different from either, and Maine one 
different from all. Virginia, in her policy on this question, differs in 
many respects from the others, and so on, until there are hardly two 
States whose policy is exactly alike in regard to the relation of the 
white man and the negro. Nor can you reconcile them and make 
them alike. Each State must do as it pleases. Illinois had as much 
right to adopt the policy which we have on that subject as Kentucky 
had to adopt a different policy. The great principle of this Govern- 
ment is, that each State has the right to do as it pleases on all these 
questions, and no other State or power on earth has the right to inter- 
fere with us, or complain of us merely because our system differs from 
theirs. In the Compromise Measures of 1850, Mr. Clay declared that 
this great principle ought to exist in the Territories as well as in the 



344 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

States, and I reasserted his doctrine in the Kansas and Nebraska bill 
in 1854. 

But Mr. Lincoln cannot be made to understand, and those who are 
determined to vote for him, no matter whether he is a pro-slavery man 
in the South and a negro equality advocate in the North, cannot be 
made to understand how it is that in a Territory the people can do as 
they please on the slavery question under the Dred Scott decision. 
Let us see whether I cannot explain it to the satisfaction of all im- 
partial men. Chief Justice Taney has said, in his opinion in the Dred 
Scott case, that a negro slave, being property, stands on an equal 
footing with other property, and that the owner may carry them into 
United States territory the same as he does other property. ['' That's 
so. "] Suppose any two of you, neighbors, should conclude to go to 
Kansas, one carrying $100,000 worth of negro slaves, and the other 
$100,000 worth of mixed merchandise, including quantities of liquors. 
You both agree that under that decision you may carry your property 
to Kansas; but when you get it there, the merchant who is possessed 
of the liquors is met by the Maine liquor law, which prohibits the sale 
or use of his property, and the owner of the slaves is met by equally 
unfriendly legislation, which makes his property worthless after he 
gets it there. What is the right to carry your property into the 
Territory worth to either, when unfriendly legislation in the Territory 
renders it worthless after you get it there? The slaveholder when 
he gets his slaves there finds that there in no local law to protect him 
in holding them, no slave code, no police regulation maintaining and 
supporting him in his right, and he discovers at once that the absence 
of such friendly legislation excludes his property from the Territory 
just as irresistibly as if there was a positive Constitutional prohibi- 
tion excluding it. 

Thus you find it is with any kind of property in a Territory : It 
depends for its protection on the local and municipal law. If the peo- 
ple of a Territory want slavery, they make friendly legislation to 
introduce it; but if they do not want it, they withhold all protection 
from it; and then it cannot exist there. Such was the view taken on 
the subject by different Southern men when the Nebraska bill passed. 
See the speech of Mr. Orr, of South Carolina, the present speaker of 
the House of Representatives of Congress, made at that time, and 
there you will find this whole doctrine argued out at full length. 
Read the speeches of other Southern Congressmen, Senators and 



DOUGLAS AT GALESBURG 345 

Representatives, made in 1854, and you will find that they took the 
same view of the subject as Mr. Orr,— that slavery could never be 
forced on a people who did not want it. I hold that in this country 
there is no power on the face of the globe that can force any institution 
on an unwilling people. The great fundamental principle of our 
Government is that the people of each State and each Territory shall 
be left perfectly free to decide for themselves what shall be the nature 
and character of their institutions. When this Government was 
made, it was based on that principle. At the time of its formation 
there were twelve slaveholding States and one Free State in this 
Union. 

Suppose this doctrine of Mr. Lincoln and the Republicans, of uni- 
formity of^- laws of all the States on the subject of slavery, had pre- 
vailed; suppose Mr. Lincoln himself had been a member of the Con- 
vention which framed the Constitution, and that he had risen in that 
august body, and, addressing the father of his country, had said as 
he did at Springfield : " A house divided against itself cannot stand. 
I believe this Government 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. " What do you think 
would have been the result? [" Hurrah for Douglas. "] Suppose he 
had made that Convention believe that doctrine, and they had acted 
upon it, what do you think would have been the result? Do you 
believe that the one Free State would have outvoted the twelve 
slaveholding States, and thus aboHshed slavery? ["No, no," and 
great applause.] On the contrary, would not the twelve slaveholding 
States have outvoted the one Free State, and under his doctrine 
have fastened slavery by an irrevocable constitutional provision 
upon every inch of the American Republic? 

Thus you see that the doctrine he now advocates, if proclaimed at 
the beginning of the Government, would have established slavery 
everywhere throughout the American continent; and are you willing, 
now that we have the majority section, to exercise a power which we 
never would have submitted to when we were in the minority? [" No, 
no, " and great applause.] If the Southern States had attempted to 
control our institutions, and make the States all Slave, when they had 
the power, I ask, Would you have submitted to it? If you would not, 

^Inserts "the" before "laws." 



346 nj.TXOISIHISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

are you williiig. now that we have become the strongest under that 
great principle of self-government that allows each State to do as it 
{deases. to attempt to control the Southern institutions? [''No, 
no."] Then, my friends. I say to you that there is but one path of 
peace ia this RepubKc. and that is to administer this Government as 
our fathers made it, divided into Free and Slave States, allowing each 
State to decide for itself whether it wants slavery or not. If Illinois 
will settle the slavery question for hersek', and mind her own business 
and let her neighbors alone, we will be at peace with Kentucky and 
every other Southern State. If every other State in the Union will 
do the same, there will be peace between the North and the South, 
and in the whole Union. 

I am told that my time has expired. [Nine cheers for Douglas.] 



M>. Lincoln's Reply 

ilr. Lincoln was received as he came forward with three tremendous 
cheers, coming from every part of the vast assembly. After silence 
was restored, Mr. Lincoln said: 

My FdUnc-Citizens: A very large portion of the speech which 
Judge Douglas has addressed to you has previously been dehvered and 
put in print. PLaughter.] I do not mean that for a hit upon the 
Judge at alL [Renewe^i laughter.] If I had not been interrupted, I 
was going to say that such an answer as I was able to make to a ven.' 
large portion of it. had already been more than once made and pub- 
lidied. There has been an opportunity afforded to the public to see 
our respective views upon the topics discussed in a large portion of 
the speech which he has just delivered. I make these remarks for the 
purpose of excusing myseK for not passing over the entire ground 
that the Judge has traversed. I however desire to take up some of 
the points that he has attended to. and ask your attention to them, 
and I shall foUow him backwards upon some notes which I have taken, 
reversing the order, by beginning where he concluded. 

The Judge has alluded to the Declaration of Independence, and 
insisted that negroes are not included in that Declaration: and that it 
is a slander upon the framers of that instrument to suppose that 
negroes were meant therein; and he asks you : Is it possible to beheve 
that Mr. Jefferson, who penned the immortal paper, could have sup- 
posed himseh* applying the language of that instrument to the negro 
race, and yet held a portion of that race in slavery? Would he not 
at once have freed them? 



UNCOLX AT ~^±LZ ■: 1 :-. T 30 

I odH- hsve to lemaik iqMn this port of Uie Jodge'a apeecb ^ad Act 

too. very brirfv. fori Aaflzi:- ' - :z jnyaeif . ck" y: : : i 'ii- izi' 
for «iy gress k'r~i. : : lin- -j.i-. i bdieve iIh ^ : i^ 

wffltJd, finom '&T :"- ":'"i ^ "i":'" ':':*:"-' _ ~ '_j: 

three years age. z_- - _: 1t- Ji \._^ :.; :^. "ir^ - 

fmn one singie m j^ : ^ j. " " i l r:* : ~ '^ ~ : " " _ jl ' _ t _ - . ^: _ - 
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r : - 1- poiiey ot the Z ^ ::- 71^77. m rr^ird to a 
'i. z" 1 .T affinnatic- T: i_ 1 " Azidl 

Judge L -z'is and ^^i: l >r ^_- ^^_ '!: '----^ 

cs-T^T : " - t5. as Til- _;- "I'^i^ .i-fr- : r 



:i-; —It. ever uUeiec - :ti.'_^_-i' ^'. 9JI akrn xo thAt c: r 
[Great apfdanse and cries :: ?! - ^^: ._ .z : : ^ i- 

"Hic next thing to whirfi I ^i-:ll i~k y: -' l - 

rtf>mTTM»nt.ar~- - '- '~ •-- ~- ---^ -~ - ;. - .:i:i " 

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he 57 \£f iJiTTf. be 

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PiftQg^ta-.] nkeyvoolc 1 - - 1 



348 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

laughter and cheers.] They would understand that it was a call for 
those hateful postmasters whom he talks about, [Uproarious 
laughter.] 

Now a few words in regard to these extracts from speeches of mine 
which Judge Douglas has read to you, and which he supposes are in 
very great contrast to each other. Those speeches have been before 
the public for a considerable time, and if they have any inconsistency 
in them, if there is any conflict in them, the public have been able to 
detect it. When the Judge says, in speaking on this subject, that I 
make speeches of one sort for the people of the northern end of the 
State, and of a different sort for the southern people, he assumes that 
I do not understand that my speeches will be put in print and read 
north and south. I knew all the while that the speech that I made at 
Chicago, and the one I made at Jonesboro, and the one at Charleston, 
would all be put in print, and all the reading and intelligent men in 
the community would see them and know all about my opinions. 
And I have not supposed, and do not now suppose, that there is any 
conflict whatever between them. ["They are good speeches;" 
" Hurrah for Lincoln. "] 

But the Judge will have it that if we do not confess that there is a 
sort of inequality between the white and the black races which justifies 
us in making them slaves, we must then insist that there is a degree of 
equality that requires us to make them our wives. [Loud applause 
and cries of "Give it to him;" "Hit him again."] Now, I have all 
the while taken a broad distinction in regard to that matter; and that 
is all there is in these different speeches which he arrays here ; and the 
entire reading of either of the speeches will show that that distinction 
was made. Perhaps by taking two parts of the same speech he could 
have got up as much of a conflict as the one he has found. I have all 
the while maintained that in so far as it should be insisted that there 
was an equality between the white and black races that should pro- 
duce a perfect social and political equality, it was an impossibility. 
This you have seen in my printed speeches, and with it I have said 
that in their right to " life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, " as 
proclaimed in that old Declaration, the inferior races are our equals. 
[Long-continued cheering.] And these declarations I have constantly 
made in reference to the abstract moral question, to contemplate and 
consider when we are legislating about any new country which is not 
already cursed with the actual presence of the evil, — slavery. 



LINCOLN AT GALESBURG 349 

I have never manifested any impatience with the necessities that 
spring from the actual presence of black people amongst us, and the 
actual existence of slavery amongst us where it does already exist ; but 
I have insisted that, in legislating for new countries where it does not 
exist, there is no just rule other than that of moral and abstract right! 
With reference to those new countries, those maxims as to the right of 
people to, "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" were the just 
rules to be constantly referred to. There is no misunderstanding this, 
except by men interested to misunderstand it. [Applause.] I take it 
that I have to address an intelligent and reading community, who will 
peruse what I say, weigh it, and then judge whether I advance im- 
proper or unsound views, or whether I advance hypocritical, and 
deceptive, and contrary views in different portions of the country. I 
believe myself to be guilty of no such thing as the latter, though, of 
course, I cannot claim that I am entirely free from all error in the 
opinions I advance. 

The Judge has also detained us a while in regard to the distinction 
between his party and our party. His he assumes to be a national 
party, — ours a sectional one. He does this in asking the question 
whether this country has any interest in the maintenance of the Re- 
publican party? He assumes that our party is altogether sectional, — 
that the party to which he adheres is national; and the argument is, 
that no party can be a rightful party — can be based upon rightful 
principles — unless it can announce its principles everywhere. I pre- 
sume that Judge Douglas could not go into Russia and announce the 
doctrine of our national Democracy; he could not denounce the 
doctrine of kings and emperors and monarchies in Russia; and it may 
be true of this country that in some places we may not be able to 
proclaim a doctrine as clearly^ as the truth of Democracy, because 
there is a section so directly opposed to it that they will not tolerate 
us in doing so. Is it the true test of the soundness of a doctrine that 
in some places people won't let you proclaim it? [''No, no, no."] 
Is that the way to test the truth of any doctrine? ["No, no, no."] 
Why, I understood that at one time the people of Chicago would not 
let Judge Douglas preach a certain favorite doctrine of his. [Laughter 
and cheers.] I commend to his consideration the question, whether 
he takes that as a test of the unsoundness of what he wanted to 
preach? [Loud cheers.] 

^Inserts "true" after "clearly ." 



350 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

There is another thing to which I wish to ask attention for a little 
while on this occasion. What has always been the evidence brought 
forward to prove that the Republican party is a sectional party? The 
main one was that in the Southern portion of the Union the people did 
not let the Republicans proclaim their doctrines amongst them. That 
has been the main evidence brought forward, — that they had no sup- 
porters, or substantially none, in the Slave States. The South have 
not taken hold of our principles as we announce them; nor does Judge 
Douglas now grapple with those principles. 

We have a Republican State Platform, laid down in Springfield in 
June last, stating our position all the way through the questions before 
the country. We are now far advanced in this canvass. Judge 
Douglas and I have made perhaps forty speeches apiece, and we have 
now for the fifth time met face to face in debate, and up to this day I 
have not found either Judge Douglas or any friend of his taking hold of 
the Republican platform, or laying his finger upon anything in it that 
is wrong. [Cheers.] I ask you^ to recollect that Judge Douglas turns 
away from the platform of principles to the fact that he can find 
people somewhere who will not allow us to announce those principles. 
[Applause.] If he had great confidence that our principles were 
wrong, he would take hold of them and demonstrate them to be wrong. 
But he does not do so. The only evidence he has of their being wrong 
is in the fact that there are people who won't allow us to preach them. 
I ask again, is that the way to test the soundness of a doctrine? 
ICries of '' No, no. "] 

1 ask his attention also to the fact that by the rule of nationality he 
Is himself fast becoming sectional. [Great cheers and laughter.] I ask 
his attention to the fact that his speeches would not go as current now 
south of the Ohio River as they have formerly gone there. [Loud 
cheers.] I ask his attention to the fact that he felicitates himself to- 
day that all the Democrats of the Free States are agreeing with him, 
[applause] while he omits to tell us that the Democrats of any Slave 
State agree with him. If he has not thought of this, I commend to 
his consideration the evidence in his own declaration, on this day, of 
his becoming sectional too. [Immense cheering.] I see it rapidly 
approaching. Whatever may be the result of this ephemeral contest 
between Judge Douglas and myself, I see the day rapidly approaching 
when his pill of sectionalism, which he has been thrusting down the 

^Inserts "all" after "you." 



LINCOLN AT GALESBURG 351 

throats of Republicans for years past, will be crowded down his own 
throat. [Tremendous applause.] 

Now, in regard to what Judge Douglas said (in the beginning of his 
speech) about the Compromise of 1850 containing the principle of the 
Nebraska bill, although I have often presented my views upon that 
subject, yet as I have not done so in this canvass, I will, if you please, 
detain you a little with them. I have always maintained, so far as I 
was able, that there was nothing of the principle of the Nebraska bill 
in the Compromise of 1850 at all, — nothing whatever. Where can 
you find the principle of the Nebraska bill in that Compromise? If 
anywhere, in the two pieces of the Compromise organizing the Terri- 
tories of New Mexico and Utah. It was expressly provided in these 
two Acts that when they came to be admitted into the Union, they 
should be admitted with or without slavery, as they should choose, by 
their own constitutions. Nothing was said in either of these Acts as 
to what was to be done in relation to slavery during the Territorial 
existence of those Territories, while Henry Clay constantly made the 
declaration (Judge Douglas recognizing him as a leader) that, in his 
opinion, the old Mexican laws would control that question during the 
Territorial existence, and that these old Mexican laws excluded 
slavery. 

How can that be used as a principle for declaring that during the 
Territorial existence as well as at the time of framing the constitution, 
the people, if you please, might have slaves if they wanted them? I 
am not discussing the question whether it is right or wrong; but how 
are the New Mexican and Utah laws patterns for the Nebraska bill? 
I maintain that the organization of Utah and New Mexico did not 
establish a general principle at all. It had no feature of establishing 
a general principle. The Acts to which I have referred were a part of 
a general system of Compromises. They did not lay down what was 
proposed as a regular policy for the Territories, only an agreement in 
this particular case to do in that way, because other things were done 
that were to be a compensation for it. They were allowed to come in 
in that shape, because in another way it was paid for, — considering 
that as a part of that system of measures called the Compromise of 
1850, which finally included half-a-dozen Acts. It included the 
admission of California as a Free State, which was kept out of the 
Union for half a year because it had formed a free constitution. It 
included the settlement of the boundary of Texas, which had been 



352 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

undefined before, which was in itself a slavery question; for if you 
pushed the line farther west, you made Texas larger, and made more 
slave territory; while, if you drew the line toward the east, you nar- 
rowed the boundary and diminished the domain of slavery, and by so 
much increased free territory. It included the abolition of the slave 
trade in the District of Columbia. It included the passage of a new 
Fugitive-Slave law. 

All these things were put together, and though passed in separate 
Acts, were, nevertheless, in legislation (as the speeches of the time will 
show) made to depend upon each other. Each got votes, with the 
understanding that the other measures were to pass, and by this sys- 
tem of Compromise, in that series of measures, those two bills — the 
New Mexico and Utah bills — were passed: and I say for that reason 
they could not be taken as models, framed upon their own intrinsic 
principle, for all future Territories. And I have the evidence of this 
in the fact that Judge Douglas, a year afterward, or more than a year 
afterward, perhaps, when he first introduced bills for the purpose of 
framing new Territories, did not attempt to follow these bills of New 
Mexico and Utah; and even when he introduced this Nebraska bill I 
think you will discover that he did not exactly follow them. But I 
do not wish to dwell at great length upon this branch of the discussion. 
My own opinion is, that a thorough investigation will show most 
plainly that the New Mexico and Utah bills were part of a system of 
compromise, and not designed as patterns for future Territorial legis- 
lation; and that this Nebraska bill did not follow them as a pattern 
at all. 

The Judge tells us,i in proceeding, that he is opposed to making any 
odious distinction between Free and Slave States. I am altogether 
unaware that the Republicans are in favor of making any odious dis- 
tinctions between the Free and Slave States. But there is still a differ- 
ence, I think, between Judge Douglas and the Republicans in this. 
I suppose that the real difference between Judge Douglas and his 
friends, and the Republicans on the contrary is, that the Judge is not 
in favor of making any difference between slavery and liberty, that he 
is in favor of eradicating, of pressing out of view, the questions of pref- 
erence in this country for free or^- slave institutions ; and consequently 
every sentiment he utters discards the idea that there is any wrong in 
slavery. Everything that emanates from him or his coadjutors in 

iOmits "us." »Reads: "over" for "or." 



LINCOLN AT GALESBURG 353 

their course of policy carefully excludes the thought that there is any- 
thing wrong in slavery. All their arguments, if you will consider 
them, will be seen to exclude the thought that there is anything 
whatever wrong in slavery If you will take the Judge's speeches, and 
select the short and pointed sentences expressed by him, — as his 
declaration that he " don't care whether slavery is voted up or down, " 
you wiU see at once that this is perfectly logical, if you do not admit 
that slavery is wrong. If you do admit that it is worng, Judge 
Douglas cannot logically sayi- he don't care whether a wrong is voted 
up or down.'^ 

Judge Douglas declares that if any community want slavery, they 
have a right to have it. He can say that logically, if he says that there 
is no wrong in slavery; but if you admit that there is a wrong in it, he 
cannot logically say that anybody has a right to do wrong. He insists 
that, upon the score of equality, the owners of slaves and owners of 
property — of horses and every other sort of property — should be alike, 
and hold them alike in a new Territory. That is perfectly logical if 
the two species of property are alike and are equally founded in right. 
But if you admit that one of them is wrong, you cannot institute any 
equality between right and wrong. And from this difference of senti- 
ment, — the belief on the part of one that the institution is wrong, and 
a policy springing from that belief which looks to the arrest of the en- 
largement of that wrong; and this other sentiment, that it is no wrong, 
and a policy sprung from that sentiment, which will tolerate no idea of 
preventing the wrong from growing larger, and looks to there never 
being an end of it through all the existence of things, — arises the real 
difference between Judge Douglas and his friends on the one hand, 
and the Republicans on the other. 

Now, I confess myself as belonging to that class in the country who 
contemplate slavery as a moral, social, and political evil, having due 
regard for its actual existence amongst us and the difficulties of getting 
rid of it in any satisfactory way, and to all the constitutional obliga- 
tions which have been thrown about it; but, nevertheless, desire a 
policy that looks to the prevention of it as a wrong, and looks hopefully 
to the time when as a wrong it may come to an end. [Great applause.] 

Judge Douglas has again, for, I believe, the fifth time, if not the 
seventh, in my presence, reiterated his charge of a conspiracy or com- 
bination between the National Democrats and Republicans. What 

■■Inserts "that" after "say." ^Inserts "voted" before "down." 



354 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

evidence Judge Douglas has upon this subject I know not, inasmuch 
as he never favors us with any. [Laughter and cheers.] 

I have said upon a former occasion, and I do not choose to suppress 
it now, that I have no objection to the division in the Judge's party. 
[Cheers.] He got it up himself. It was all his and their work. He 
had, I think, a great deal more to do with the steps that led to the 
Lecompton Constitution than Mr. Buchanan had; [applause] though 
at last, when they reached it, they quarreled over it, and their friends 
divided upon it. [Applause.] I am very free to confess to Judge 
Douglas that I have no objection to the division; [loud applause and 
laughter] but I defy the Judge to show any evidence that I have in any 
way promoted that division, unless he insists on being a witness him- 
self in merely saying so. [Laughter.] I can give all fair friends of Judge 
Douglas here to understand exactly the view that Republicans take in 
regard to that division. Don't you remember how two years ago the 
opponents of the Democratic party were divided between Fremont and 
Fillmore? I guess you do. ["Yes, Sir, we remember it mighty well."] 
Any Democrat who remembers that division will remember also that 
he was at the time very glad of it, [laughter] and then he will be able to 
see all there is between the National Democrats and the Republicans. 
What we now think of the two divisions of Democrats, you then 
thought of the Fremont and Fillmore divisions. [Great cheers.] That 
is all there is of it. 

But if the Judge continues to put forward the declaration that there 
is an unholy and unnatural alliance between the Republican^- and the 
National Democrats, I now want to enter my protest against receiving 
him as an entirely competent witness upon that subject. [Loud cheers.] 
I want to call to the Judge's attention an attack he made upon me in 
the first one of these debates, at Ottawa, on the 21st of August. In 
order to fix extreme Abolitionism upon me, Judge Douglas read a set 
of resolutions which he declared had been passed by a Republican State 
Convention, in October, 1854, at Springfield, Illinois, and he declared 
I had taken part in that Convention. It turned out that although a 
few men calling themselves an anti-Nebraska State Convention had 
sat at Springfield about that time, yet neither did I take any part in 
it, nor did it pass the resolutions or any such resolutions as Judge 
Douglas read. [Great applause.] So apparent had it become that 
the resolutions which he read had not been passed at Springfield at all, 

iReads: "Republicans" for "Republican." 



LINCOLN AT GALESBURG 355 

nor by a State Convention in which I had taken part, that seven days 
aftei-ward, at Freeport, Judge Douglas declared that he had been mis- 
led by Charles H. Lanphier, editor of the State Register, and Thomas 
L. Harris, member of Congress in that District, and he promised in 
that speech that when he went to Springfield he would investigate the 
matter. Since then Judge Douglas has been to Springfield, and I pre- 
sume has made the investigation; but a month has passed since he has 
been there, and, so far as I know, he has made no report of the result 
of his investigation. [Great applause.] I have waited as I think a 
sufficient time for the report of that investigation, and I have some 
curiosity to see and hear it. [Applause.] A fraud, an absolute for- 
gery was committed, and the perpetration of it was traced to the three, 
— Lanphier, Harris, and Douglas. [Applause and laughter.] Whether 
it can be narrowed in any way so as to exonerate any one of them, is 
what Judge Douglas's report would probably show. [Applause and 
laughter.] 

It is true that the set of resolutions read by Judge Douglas were 
published in the Illinois State Register on the 16th of October, 1854, as 
being the resolutions of an anti-Nebraska Convention which had sat 
in that same month of October, at Springfield. But it is also true that 
the publication in the Register was a forgery then, [cheers] and the 
question is still behind, which of the three, if not all of them, commit- 
ted that forgery? The idea that it was done by mistake, is absurd. 
The article in the Illinois State Register contains part of the real pro- 
ceedings of that Springfield Convention, showing that the writer of 
the article had the real proceedings before him, and purposely threw 
out the genuine resolutions passed by the Convention, and fraudu- 
lently substituted the others. Lanphier then, as now, was the editor 
of the Register, so that there seems to be but little room for his excape. 
But then it is to be borne in mind that Lanphier had less interest in 
the object of that forgery than either of the other two. [Cheers.] 
The main object of that forgery at that time was to beat Yates and 
elect Harris to Congress, and that object was known to be exceedingly 
dear to Judge Douglas at that time. [Laughter.] Harris and Douglas 
were both in Springfield when the convention was in session, and 
although they both left before the fraud appeared in the Register, 
subsequent events show that they have both had their eyes fixed upon 
that Convention. 

The fraud having been apparently successful upon the occasion, 



356 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

both Harris and Douglas have more than once since then been attempt- 
ing to put it to new uses. As the fisherman's wife, whose drowned 
husband^ was brought home with his body 2- full of eels, said when she 
was asked, "What was to be done with him? " " Take the eels out and 
set him again, " [great laughter] so Harris and Douglas have shown a 
disposition to take the eels out of that stale fraud by which they 
gained Harris's election, and set the fraud again more than once. 
[Tremendous cheers and laughter.] On the 9th of July, 1856, Doug- 
las attempted a repetition of it upon Trumbull on the floor of the 
Senate of the United States, as will appear from the Appendix to the 
Congressional Globe of that date. 

On the 9th of August, Harris attempted it again upon Norton in the 
House of Representatives, as will appear by the same document, — the 
Appendix to the Congressional Globe of that date. On the 21st of 
August last,^ all three — Lanphier, Douglas and Harris — reattempted 
it upon me at Ottawa. [Tremendous applause.] It has been clung 
to and played out again and again as an exceedingly high trump by 
this blessed trio. [Roars of laughter and tremendous applause. 
" Give it to him, " etc.] And now that it has been discovered publicly 
to be a fraud, we find that Judge Douglas manifests no surprise at it 
at all. [Laughter. " That's it, hit him again. "] He makes no com- 
plaint of Lanphier, who must have known it to be a fraud from the 
beginning. He,* Lanphier, and Harris are just as cozy now, and just 
as active in the concoction of new schemes as they were before the 
general discovery of this fraud. [Laughter and cheers.] Now, all 
this is very natural if they are all alike guilty in that fraud, and it is 
very unnatural if any one of them is innocent. [Great laughter. 
" Hit him again, " " Hurrah for Lincoln. "] Lanphier perhaps insists 
that the rule of honor among thieves does not quite require him to 
take all upon himself, [laughter] and consequently my friend Judge 
Douglas finds it difficult to make a satisfactory report upon his 
investigation. [Laughter and applause.] But meanwhile the three 
are agreed that each is " a most honorable man. " [Cheers and explo- 
sions of laughter.] 

Judge Douglas requires an indorsement of his truth and honor by a 
re-election to the United States Senate, and he makes and reports 
against me and against Judge Trumbull, day after day, charges which 
we know to be utterly untrue, without for a moment seeming to think 

'ueads: "husband's body" for "husband." ^Omits "last." 

=* Reads: "the pockets" for "his body." "Reads: "Both" for "He." 



LINCOLN AT GALESBURG 357 

that this one unexplained fraud, which he promises to investigate, 
will be the least drawback to his claim to belief. Harris ditto. He 
asks re-election to the Lower House of Congress without seeming to 
remember at all that he is involved in this dishonorable fraud. The 
Illinois State Register, edited by Lanphier, then, as now, the central 
organ of both Harris and Douglas, continues to din the public ear 
with these assertions,^ without seeming to suspect that they^ are at 
all lacking in title to belief. 

After all, the question still recurs upon us, How did that fraud 
originally get into the State Register? Lanphier then, as now, was the 
editor of that paper. Lanphier knows. Lanphier cannot be ignorant 
of how and by whom it was originally concocted. Can he be induced 
to tell, or, if he has told, can Judge Douglas be induced to tell how it 
originally was concocted? It may be true that Lanphier insists that 
the two men for whose benefit it was originally devised, shall at least 
bear their share of it! How that is, I do not know, and while it 
remains unexplained, I hope to be pardoned if I insist that the mere 
fact of Judge Douglas making charges against Trumbull and myself 
is not quite sufficient evidence to establish them! [Great cheering. 
"Hit him again;" "Give it to him," etc.] 

While we were at Freeport, in one of these joint discussions, I an- 
swered certain interrogatories which Judge Douglas had propounded 
to me, and then in turn propounded some to him, which he in a sort of 
way answered. The third one of these interrogatories I have with me, 
and wish now to make some comments upon it. It was in these words 
"If the Supreme Court of the United States shall decide that States ^ 
cannot exclude slavery from their limits, are you in favor of acquies- 
cing in, adopting,* and following such decision as a rule of political 
action?" 

To this interrogatory Judge Douglas made no answer in any just 
sense of the word. He contented himself with sneering at the thought 
that it was possible for the Supreme Court ever to make such a deci- 
sion. He sneered at me for propounding the interrogatory. I had 
not propounded it without some reflection, and I wish now to address 
to this audience some remarks upon it. 

In the second clause of the sixth article, I believe it is, of the Con- 

iReads: "tliis assertion" for "these assertions." 
SReads: "these assertions" for "they". 
^Inserts "the" before "States." 
■•Reads: "adhering to" for "adopting." 



358 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

stitution of the United States, we find the following language : " This 
Constitution and the laws of the United States which shall be made in 
pursuance thereof; and all treaties made, or which shall be made, 
under the authority of the United States, shall be the supreme law of 
the land; and the judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any- 
thing in the Constitution or laws of any State to the contrary, not- 
withstanding. " 

The essence of the Dred Scott case is compressed^ into the sentence 
which I will now read: "Now, as we have already said in an earlier 
part of this opinion, upon a different point, the right of property in 
a slave is distinctly and expressly affirmed in the Constitution. " 
I repeat it, " The right of property in a slave is distinctly and expressly 
affirmed in the Constitution." 

What is it to be^^ " affirmed " in the Constitution? Made firm in the 
Constitution, — so made that it cannot be separated from the Con- 
stitution without breaking the Constitution; durable as the Consti- 
tution, and part of the Constitution. Now, remembering the pro- 
vision of the Constitution which I have read; affirming that that 
instrument is the supreme law of the land; that the Judges of every 
State shall be bound by it, any law or constitution of any State to 
the contrary notwithstanding; that the right of property in a slave 
is affirmed in that Constitution, is made, formed into, and cannot be 
separated from it without breaking it; durable as the instrument; 
part of the instrument; — what follows as a short and even syllogistic 
argument from it? I think it follows, and I submit to the considera- 
tion of men capable of arguing, whether as I state it, in syllogistic 
form, the argument has any fault in it? 

Nothing in the Constitution or laws of any State can destroy a 
right distinctly and expressly affirmed in the Constitution of the 
United States. 

The right of property in a slave is distinctly and expressly 
afl&rmed in the constitution of the United States. 

Therefore, nothing in the Constitution or laws of any State can 
destroy the right of property in a slave. 

I believe that no fault can be pointed out in that argument; assum- 
ing the truth of the premises, the conclusion, so far as I have capacity 
at all to understand it, follows inevitably. There is a fault in it as 
I think, but the fault is not in the reasoning: the^ falsehood in fact is 
a fault in* the premises. 

iRcads: "comprised" for "compressed." 'Inserts "but" before "the." 

aOmits "it to be." ^Reads: "of" for "in." 



LINCOLN AT GALESBURG 359 

I believe that the right of property in a slave is not distinctly and 
expressly affirmed in the Constitution, and Judge Douglas thinks it 
is. I believe that the Supreme Court and the advocates of that deci- 
sion may search in vain for the place in the Constitution where the 
right of property in a slave is distinctly and expressly affirmed. I say, 
therefore, that I think one of the premises is not true in fact. But it 
is true with Judge Douglas. It is true with the Supreme Court who 
pronounced it. They are estopped from denying it, and being stopped 
from denying it the conclusion follows that, the Constitution of the 
United States being the supreme law, no constitution or law can inter- 
fere with it. It being affirmed in the decision that the right of prop- 
erty in a slave is distinctly and expressly affirmed in the Constitution, 
the conclusion inevitably follows that no State law or constitution 
can destroy that right. 

I then say to Judge Douglas and to all others, that I think it will take 
a better answer than a sneer to show that those who have said that the 
right of property in a slave is distinctly and expressly affirmed in the 
Constitution, are not prepared to show that no constitution or law can 
destroy that right. I say I believe it will take a far better argument 
than a mere sneer to show to the minds of intelligent men that who- 
ever has so said, is not prepared, whenever public sentiment is so far 
advanced as to justify it, to say the other. ["That's so."] This is 
but an opinion, and the opinion of one very humble man; but it 
is my opinion that the Dred Scott decision, as it is, never would 
have been made in its present form if the party that made it had not 
been sustained previously by the elections. My own opinion is, that 
the new Dred Scott decision, deciding against the right of the people 
of the States to exclude slavery will never be made, if that party is not 
sustained by the elections. [Cries of "Yes," "Yes."] I believe, 
further, that it is just as sure to be made as to-morrow is to come, if 
that party shall be sustained. ["We won't sustain it;" "Never;" 
"Never."] 

I have said, upon a former occasion, and I repeat it now, that the 
course of argument that Judge Douglas makes use of upon this sub- 
ject (I charge not his motives in this) , is preparing the public mind for 
that new Dred Scott decision. I have asked him again to point out 
to me the reasons for his first adherence to the Dred Scott decision as 
it is. I have turned his attention to the fact that General Jackson 
differed with him in regard to the political obligation of a Supreme 



360 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Court decision. I have asked his attention to the fact that Jefferson 
differed with him in regard to the political obligation of a Supreme 
Court decision. Jefferson said that "Judges are as honest as other 
men, and not more so. " And he said, substantially, that " whenever 
a free people should give up in absolute submission to any department 
of government, retaining for themselves no appeal from it, their 
liberties were gone. " I have asked his attention to the fact that the 
Cincinnati platform upon which he says he stands, disregards a time- 
honored decision of the Supreme Court, in denying the power of Con- 
gress to establish a National Bank. I have asked his attention to 
the fact that he himself was one of the most active instruments at one 
time in breaking!- down the Supreme Court of the State of Illinois, 
because it had made a decision distasteful to him, — a struggle ending 
in the remarkable circumstance of his sitting down as one of the new 
Judges who were to overslaugh that decision; [loud applause] getting 
his title of Judge in that very way. [Tremendous applause and 
laughter.] 

So far in this controversy I can get no answer at all from Judge 
Douglas upon these subjects. Not one can I get from him, except 
that he swells himself up and says, "All of us who stand by the decis- 
ion of the Supreme Court are the friends of the Constitution ; all you 
fellows that dare question it in any way, are the enemies of the Con- 
stitution. " [Continued laughter and cheers.] Now, in this very 
devoted adherence to this decision, in opposition to all the great 
political leaders whom he has recognized as leaders, in opposition to 
his former self and history, there is something very marked. And 
the manner in which he adheres to it, — not as being right upon the 
merits, as he conceives (because he did not discuss that at all), but 
as being absolutely obligatory upon every one, simply because of the 
source from whence it comes, — as that which no man can gainsay, 
whatever it may be; this is another marked feature of his adherence 
to that decision. It marks it in this respect that it commits him to 
the next decision whenever it comes, as being as obligatory as this 
one, since he does not investigate it, and won't inquire whether this 
opinion is right or wrong. So he takes the next one without inquir- 
ing whether it is right or wrong. [Applause.] He teaches men this 
doctrine, and in so doing prepares the public mind to take the next 
decision when it comes, without any inquiry. 

■"■Reads: "backing" for "breaking." 



LINCOLN AT GALESBURG 361 

In this I think I argue fairly (without questioning motives at all) 
that Judge Douglas is most ingeniously and powerfully preparing the 
public mind to take that decision when it comes; and not only so, but 
he is doing it in various other ways. In these general maxims about 
liberty, in his assertions that he " don't care whether slavery is voted 
up or voted down; " that "whoever wants slavery has a right to have 
it; " that " upon principles of equality it should be allowed to go every- 
where ; " that " there is no inconsistency between free and slave institu- 
tions. " In this he is also preparing (whether purposely or not) the 
way for making the institution of slavery national! [Cries of "Yes, 
yes;" ''That's so."] I repeat again, for I wish no misunderstanding, 
that I do not charge that he means it so ; but I call upon your minds to 
inquire, if you were going to get the best instrument you could, and 
then set it to work in the most ingenious way, to prepare the public 
mind for this movement, operating in the Free States, where there is 
now an abhorrence of the institution of slavery, could you find an in- 
strument so capable of doing it as Judge Douglas, or one employed in 
so apt a way to do it? [Great cheering. Cries of "Hit him again;" 
"That's the doctrine."] 

I have said once before, and I will repeat it now, that Mr. Clay, when 
he was once answering an objection to the Colonization Society, that it 
had a tendency to the ultimate emancipation of the slaves, said that 
" those who would repress all tendencies to liberty and ultimate eman- 
cipation must do more than put down the benevolent efforts of the Col- 
onization Society, — they must go back to the era of our liberty and 
independence, and muzzle the cannon that thunders its annual joyous 
return; they must blot out the moral lights around us; they must pene- 
trate the human soul, and eradicate the light of reason and the love of 
liberty ! " And I do think — I repeat, though I said it on a former occa- 
sion — that Judge Douglas and whoever, like him, teaches that the 
negro has no share, humble -though it may be, in the Declaration of 
Independence, is going back to the era of our liberty and independ- 
ence, and, so far as in him lies, muzzling the cannon that thunders its 
annual joyous return; [" That's so. "] that he is blowing^- out the moral 
lights around us, when he contends that whoever wants slaves has a 
right to hold them ; that he is penetrating, so far as lies in his power, 
the human soul, and eradicating the light of reason and the love of 
liberty, when he is in every possible way preparing the public mind, by 

iReads: "blotting" for "blowing." 



362 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

his vast influence, for making the institution of slavery perpetual and 
national. [Great applause and cries of " Hurrah for Lincoln ; " 'That's 
the true doctrine. "] 

There is, my friends, only one other point to which I will call your 
attention for the remaining time that I have left me, and perhaps I 
shall not occupy the entire time that I have, as that one point may not 
take me clear through it. 

Among the interrogatories that Judge Douglas propounded to me at 
Freeport, there was one in about this language : '' Are you opposed to 
the acquisition of any further territory to the United States, unless 
slavery shall first be prohibited therein?" I answered, as I thought, 
in this way, that I am not generally opposed to the acquisition of ad- 
ditional territory, and that I would support a proposition for the ac- 
quisition of additional territory according as my supporting it was or 
was not calculated to aggravate this slavery question amongst us. I 
then proposed to Judge Douglas another interrogatory, which was 
correlative to that; " Are you in favor of acquiring additional territory, 
in disregard of how it may affect us upon the slavery question? " Judge 
Douglas answered, — that is, in his own way he answered it. [Laugh- 
ter.] I believe that, although he took a good many words to answer it, 
it was a little more fully answered than any other. The substance of 
his answer was, that this country would continue to expand; that it 
would need additional territory ; that it was as absurd to suppose that 
we could continue upon our present territory, enlarging in population 
as we are, as it would be to hoop a boy twelve years of age, and expect 
him to grow to man's size without bursting the hoops. [Laughter.] 
I believe it was something like that. Consequently, he was in favor 
of the acquisition of further territory as fast as we might need it, in 
disregard of how it might affect the slavery question. 

I do not say this as giving his exact language, but he said so sub- 
stantially ; and he would leave the question of slavery where the terri- 
tory was acquired, to be settled by the people of the acquired territory. 
["That's the doctrine. "] May be it is; let us consider that for a while. 
This will probably, in the run of things, become one of the concrete 
manifestations of this slavery question. If Judge Douglas's policy 
upon this question succeeds, and gets fairly settled down, until all op- 
position is crushed out, the next thing will be a grab for the territory of 
poor Mexico, an invasion of the rich lands of South America, then the 
adjoining islands will follow, each one of which promises additional 



LINCOLN AT GALESBURG . 363 

slave-fields. And this question is to be left to the people of those coun- 
tries for settlement. When we shall get Mexico, I don't know whether 
the Judge will be in favor of the Mexican people that we get with it set- 
tling that question for themselves and all others ; because we know the 
Judge has a great horror for mongrels, [laughter] and I understand 
that the people of Mexico are most decidedly a race of mongrels. [Re- 
newed laughter.] I understand that there is not more than one person 
there out of eight who is pure white, and I suppose from the Judge's 
previous declaration that when we get Mexico or any considerable por- 
tion of it,^ he will be in favor of these mongrels settling the question, 
which would bring him somewhat into collision with his horror of an 
inferior race. 

It is to be remembered, though, that this power of acquiring addi- 
tional territory is a power confided to the President and Senate of the 
United States. It is a power not under the control of the representa- 
tives of the people any further than they, the President and the Senate, 
can be considered the representatives of the people. Let me illustrate 
that by a case we have in our history. When we acquired the terri- 
tory from Mexico in the Mexican war, the House of Representatives, 
composed of the immediate representatives of the people, all the time 
insisted that the territory thus to be acquired should be brought in 
upon condition that slavery should be forever prohibited therein, upon 
the terms and in the language that slavery had been prohibited from 
coming into this country. That was insisted upon constantly and never 
failed to call forth an assurance that any territory thus acquired should 
have that prohibition in it, so far as the House of Representatives was 
concerned. But at last the President and Senate acquired the terri- 
tory without asking the House of Representatives anything' about it, 
and took it without that prohibition. They have the power of acquir- 
ing territory without the immediate representatives of the people being 
called upon to say anything about it, and thus furnishing a very apt 
and powerful means of bringing new territory into^the Union, and 
when it is once brought into the country, involving us anew in this 
slavery agitation. 

It is, therefore, as I think, a very important question for the consid- 
eration of the American people, whether the policy of bringing in addi- 
tional territory, without considering at all how it will operate upon the 
safety of the Union in reference to this one great disturbing element in 

ilnserts "that" after "it." 



364 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

our national politics, shall be adopted as the policy of the country. You 
will bear in mind that it is to be acquired, according to the Judge's 
view, as fast as it is needed, and the indefinite part of this proposition 
is that we have only Judge Douglas and his class of men to decide how 
fast it is needed. We have no clear and certain way of determining or 
demonstrating how fast territory is needed by the necessities of the 
country. Whoever wants to go out filibustering, then, thinks that 
more territory is needed. Whoever wants wider slave-fields, feels sure 
that some additional territory is needed as slave-territory. Then it is 
as easy to show the necessity of additional slave-territory as it is to as- 
sert anything that is incapable of absolute demonstration. Whatever 
motive a man or a set of men may have for making annexation of 
property or territory, it is very easy to assert, but much less easy to 
disprove, that it is necessary for the wants of the country. 

And now it only remains for me to say that I think it is a very grave 
question for the people of this Union to consider, whether, in view of 
the fact that this slavery question has been the only one that has ever 
endangered our Republican institutions, the only one that has ever 
threatened or menaced a dissolution of the Union, that has ever dis- 
turbed us in such a way as to make us fear for the perpetuity of our 
liberty, — in view of these facts, I think it is an exceedingly interesting 
and important question for this people to consider whether we shall 
engage in the policy of acquiring additional territory, discarding alto- 
gether from our consideration, while obtaining new territory, the ques- 
tion how it may affect us in regard to this, the only endangering ele- 
ment to our liberties and national greatness. 

The Judge's view has been expressed. I, in my answer to his ques- 
tion, have expressed mine. I think it will become an important and 
practical question. Our views are before the public. I am willing and 
anxious that they should consider them fully ; that they should turn it 
about and consider the importance of the question, and arrive at a just 
conclusion as to whether it is or notK wise in the people of this Union, in 
the acquisition of new territory, to consider whether it will add to the 
disturbance that is existing amongst us, — whether it will add to the one 
only danger that has ever threatened the perpetuity of the Union or our 
own liberties. I think it is extremely important that they shall decide 
and rightly decide, that question before entering upon that policy. 

And now, my friends, having said the little I wish to^say upon this 

^Inserts "is" before "not." 



DOUGLAS AT GALESBURG 365 

head, whether I have occupied the whole of the remnant of my time or 
not, I beHeve I could not enter upon any new topic so as to treat it 
fully, without transcending my time, which I would not for a moment 
think of doing. I give way to Judge Douglas. 

Three tremendous cheers for Lincoln from the whole vast audience 
were given with great enthusiasm, as their favorite retired. 



Mr. Doiig-las's Rejoinder 

When Senator Douglas arose to reply to Mr. Lincoln, six cheers were 
called for in the crowd and given with great spirit. He said, quieting 
the applause : 

Gentlemen: The highest compliment you can pay me during the 
brief half -hour that I have to conclude is by observing a strict silence. 
I desire to be heard rather than to be applauded. [" Good. "] 

The first criticism that Mr. Lincoln makes on my speech was that it 
was in substance what I have said everywhere else in the State where" I 
have addressed the people. I wish I could only say the same of his 
speech. [" Good; you have him, " and applause.] Why, the reason I 
complain of him is because he makes one speech north, and another 
south. ["That's so. "] Because he has one set of sentiments for the 
Abolition counties, and another set for the counties opposed to Aboli- 
tionism. [" Hit him over the knuckles. "] My point of complaint 
against him is that I cannot induce him to hold up the same standard, 
to carry the same flag, in all parts of the State. He does not pretend, 
and no other man will, that I have one set of principles for Galesburg, 
and another for Charleston. ["No, no."] He does not pretend that I 
hold to one doctrine in Chicago, and an opposite one in Jonesboro. I 
have proved that he has a different set of principles for each of these 
localities. All I asked of him was that he should deliver the speech 
that he has made here to-day in Coles County instead of in old Knox. 
It would have settled the question between us in that doubtful county. 
Here I understand him to reaffirm the doctrine of negro equality, and 
to assert that by the Declaration of Independence the negro is declared 
equal to the white man. He tells you today that the negro was in- 
cluded in the Declaration of Independence when it is asserted that all 
men were created equal. [" We believe it. "] Very well. [Here an 
uproar arose; persons in various parts of the crowd indulging in cat 
calls, groans, cheers, and other noises, preventing the speaker from 
proceeding.] 



366 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL' COLLECTIONS 

Mr. Douglas. — Gentlemen, I ask you to remember that Mr. Lincoln 
was listened to respectfully, and I have the right to insist that I shall 
not be interrupted during my reply. 

Mr. Lincoln. — I hope that silence will be preserved. 

Mr. Douglas. — Mr. Lincoln asserts to-day, as he did in Chicago, that 
the negro was included in that clause of the Declaration of Independ- 
ence which says that all men were created equal, and endowed by the 
Creator with certain inalienable rights, among which are life, liberty, 
and the pursuit of happiness. ["Ain't that so?"] If the negro was 
made his equal and mine, if that equality was established by divine 
law, and was the negro's inalienable right, how came he to say at 
Charleston to the Kentuckians residing in that section of our State 
that the negro was physically inferior to the white man, belonged to 
an inferior race, and he was for keeping him always in that inferior 
condition? [" Good. "] I wish you to bear these things in mind. At 
Charleston he said that the negro belonged to an inferior race, and 
that he was for keeping him in that inferior condition. There he gave 
the people to understand that there was no moral question involved, 
because, the inferiority, being established, it was only a question of 
degree, and not a question of right; here, to-day, instead of making it 
a question of degree, he makes it a moral question, says that it is a 
great crime to hold the negro in that inferior condition. ["He's 
right. "] Is he right now, or was he right in Charleston? [" Both. "] 
He is right, then, sir, in your estimation, not because he is consistent, 
but because he can trim his principles any way, in any section, so as 
to secure votes. All I desire of him is that he will declare the same 
principles in the south that he does in the north. 

But did you notice how he answered my position that a man should 
hold the same doctrines throughout the length and breadth of this Re- 
public? He said, "Would Judge Douglas go to Russia and proclaim 
the same principles he does here? " I would remind him that Russia 
is not under the American Constitution. [" Good, " and laughter.] If 
Russia was a part of the American Republic, under our Federal Con- 
stitution, and I was sworn to support the^ Constitution, I would main- 
tain the same doctrine in Russia that I do in Illinois. [Cheers.] The 
slave-holding States are governed by the same Federal Constitution 
as ourselves, and hence a man's principles, in order to be in harmony 
with the Constitution, must be the same in the South as they are in 

i Reads: "that" for "the." 



DOUGLAS AT GALESBURG 367 

the North, the same in the Free States as they are in the Slave States. 
Whenever a man advocates one set of principles in one section, and 
another set in another section, his opinions are in violation of the spirit 
of the Constitution which he was sworn to support. ["That's so."] 
When Mr. Lincoln went to Congress in 1847, and, laying his hand upon 
the Holy Evangelists, made a solem vow, in the presence of high 
Heaven, that he would be faithful to the Constitution, what did he 
mean, — the Constitution as he expounds it in Galesburg, or the Con- 
stitution as he expounds it in Charleston? [Cheers.] 

Mr. Lincoln has devoted considerable time to the circumstance-*- that 
at Ottawa I read a series of resolutions as having been adopted at 
Springfield, in this State, on the 4th or 5th of October, 1854, which 
happened not to have been adopted there. He has used hard names; 
has dared to talk about fraud, [laughter] about forgery, and has insin- 
uated that there was a conspiracy between Mr. Lanphier, Mr. Harris, 
and myself to perpetrate a forgery. [Renewed laughter.] Now, bear 
in mind that he does not deny that these resolutions were adopted in a 
majority of all the Republican counties of this State in that year; he 
does not deny that they were declared to be the platform of this Re- 
publican party in the first Congressional District, in the second, in the 
third, and in many counties of the fourth, and that they thus became 
the platform of his party in a majoritj^ of the counties upon which he 
now relies for support; he does not deny the truthfulness of the resolu- 
tions, but takes exception to the spot on which they were adopted. He 
takes to himself great merit because he thinks they were not adopted 
on the right spot for me to use them against him, just as he was very 
severe in Congress upon the Government of his country when he 
thought that he had discovered that the Mexican war was not begun 
in the right spot, and was therefore unjust. ["That's so. "] He tries 
very hard to make out that there is something very extraordinary in 
the place where the thing was done, and not in the thing itself. 

I never believed before that Abraham Lincoln would be guilty of 
what has been done this day in regard to those resolutions. In the 
first place, the moment it was intimated to me that they had been 
adopted at Aurora and Rockford instead of Springfield, I did not wait 
for him to call my attention to the fact, but led off, and explained in 
my first meeting after the Ottawa debate what the mistake was, and 
how it had been. [" That's so. "] I supposed that for an honest man, 

■'Reads: "circumstances" for "circumstance." 



368 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

conscious of his own rectitude, that explanation would be sufficient. I 
did not wait for him, after the mistake was made, to call my attention 
to it, but frankly explained it at once as an honest man would. [Cheers.] 
I also gave the authority on which I had stated that these resolutions 
were adopted by the Springfield Republican Convention; that I had 
seen them quoted by Major Harris in a debate in Congress, as having 
been adopted by the first Republican State Convention in Illinois, and 
that I had written to him and asked him for the authority as to the 
time and place of their adoption; that, Major Harris being extremely 
ill, Charles H. Lanphier had written to me, for him, that they were 
adopted at Springfield on the 5th of October, 1854, and had sent me a 
copy of the Springfield paper containing them. I read them from the 
newspaper just as Mr. Lincoln reads the proceedings of meetings held 
years ago from the newspapers. After giving that explanation, I did 
not think there was an honest man in the State of Illinois who doubted 
that I had been led into the error, if it was such, innocently, in the way 
I detailed ; and I will now say that I do not now believe that there is an 
honest man on the face of the globe who will not regard with abhor- 
rence and disgust Mr. Lincoln's insinuations of my complicity in that 
forgery, if it was a forgery. [Cheers.] Does Mr. Lincoln wish to push 
these things to the point of personal difficulties here? I commenced 
this contest by treating him courteously and kindly ; I always spoke of 
him in words of respect; and in return he has sought, and is now seek- 
ing to divert public attention from the enormity of his revolutionary 
principles by impeaching men's sincerety and integrity, and inviting 
personal quarrels. [" Give it to him, " and cheers.] 

I desired to conduct this contest with him like a gentleman; but I 
spurn the insinuation of complicity and fraud made upon the simple 
circumstance of an editor of a newspaper having made a mistake as to 
the place where a thing was done, but not as to the thing itself. These 
resolutions were the platform of this Republican party of Mr. Lincoln's 
of that year. They were adopted in a majority of the Republican 
counties in the State ; and when I asked him at Ottawa whether they 
formed the platform upon which he stood he did not answer, and I 
could not get an answer out of him. He then thought, as I thought, 
that those resolutions were adopted at the Springfield Convention, but 
excused himself by saying that he was not there when they were 
adopted, but had gone to Tazewell court in order to avoid being 



DOUGLAS AT GALESBURG 369 

present at the Convention. He saw them published as having been 
adopted at Springfield, and so did I, and he knew that if there was a 
mistake in regard to them, that I had nothing under heaven to do with 
it. Besides, you find that in all these northern counties where the 
Republican candidates are iTinning pledged to him, that the Conven- 
tion which nominated them adopted that identical platform. 

One cardinal point in that platform which he shrinks from is this: 
that there shall be no more Slave States admitted into the Union, even 
if the people want them. Lovejoy stands pledged against the admis- 
sion of any more Slave States. [" Right, so do we. "] So do you, you 
say. Farnsworth stands pledged against the admission of any more 
Slave States. Washburne stands pledged the same way. ["Most 
right. " " Good, good. "] The candidate for the Legislature who is 
running on Lincoln's ticket in Henderson and Warren, stands com- 
mitted by his vote in the Legislature to the same thing; and I am 
Informed, but do not know of the fact, that your candidate here is 
also so pledged. ["Hurrah for him! good!"] 

Now, you Republicans all hurrah for him, and for the doctrine of 
" no more Slave States, " and yet Lincoln tells you that his conscience 
will not permit him to sanction that doctrine, [immense applause] and 
complains because the resolutions I read at Ottawa made him, as a 
member of the party, responsible for sanctioning the doctrine of no 
more Slave States. You are one way, you confess, and he is, or pre- 
tends to be, the other; and yet you are both governed by principle in 
supporting one another. If it be true, as I have shown it is, that the 
whole Republican party in the northern part of the State stands com- 
mitted to the doctrine of no more Slave States, and that this same 
doctrine is repudiated by the Republicans in the other part of the 
State, I wonder whether Mr. Lincoln and his party do not present the 
case which he cited from the Scriptures, of a house divided against 
itself which cannot stand! [Tremendous shouts of applause.] 

I desire to know what are Mr. Lincoln's principles and the principles 
of his party? I hold, and the party with which I am identified holds, 
that the people of each State, old and new, have the right to decide the 
slavery question for themselves; ["That's it, " " Right, " and immense 
applause.] and when I used the remark that I did not care whether 
slavery was voted up or down, I used it in the connection that I was for 
allowing Kansas to do just as she pleased on the slavery question. I 
said that I did not care whether they voted slavery up or down, 



370 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

because they had the right to do as they pleased on the question, and 
therefore my action would not be controlled by any such consideration. 
["That's the doctrine."] Why cannot Abraham Lincoln, and the 
party with which he acts, speak out their principles so that they may 
be understood? Why do they claim to be one thing in one part of 
the State, and another in the other part? Whenever I allude to the 
Abolition doctrines, which he considers a slander to be charged with 
being in favor of, you all endorse them, and hurrah for them, not 
knowing that your candidate is ashamed to acknowledge them. ["You 
have them;" and cheers.] 

I have a few words to say upon the Dred Scott decision, which has 
troubled the brain of Mr. Lincoln so much. [Laughter.] He insists 
that that decision would carry slavery into the Free States, notwith- 
standing that the decision says directly the opposite, and goes into a 
long argument to make you believe that I am in favor, of and would 
sanction, the doctrine that would allow slaves to be brought here and 
held as slaves contrary to our Constitution and laws. Mr. Lincoln 
knew better when he asserted this; he knew that one newspaper, and, 
so far as is within my knowledge, but one, ever asserted that doctrine, 
and that I was the first man in either House of Congress that read that 
article in debate, and denounced it on the floor of the Senate as Rev- 
olutionary. When the Washington Union, on the 17th of last No- 
vember, published an article to that effect, I branded it at once, and 
denounced it; and hence the Union has been pursuing me ever since. 
Mr. Toombs, of Georgia, replied to me, and said that there was not a 
man in any of the Slave States south of the Potomac River that held 
any such doctrine. 

Mr. Lincoln knows that there is not a member of the Supreme Court 
who holds that doctrine; he knows that every one of them, as shown by 
their opinions, holds the reverse. Why this attempt then to bring the 
Supreme Court into disrepute among the people? It looks as if there 
was an effort being made to destroy public confidence in the highest 
judicial tribunal on earth. Suppose he succeeds in destroying public 
confidence in the court, so that the people will not respect its decisions 
but will feel at liberty to disregard them and resist the laws of the land, 
what will he have gained? He will have changed the Government 
from one of laws into that of a mob, in which the strong arm of vio- 
lence will be substituted for the decisions of the courts of justice. 
["That's .so. "] He complains because I did not go into an argument 



DOUGLAS AT GALESBURG 371 

reviewing Chief Justice Taney's opinion, and the other opinions of the 
different judges, to determine whether their reasoning is right or 
wrong on the questions of law. What use would that be? 

He wants to take an appeal from the Supreme Court to this meeting, 
to determine whether the questions of law were decided properly. He 
is going to appeal from the Supreme Court of the United States to 
every town meeting, in the hope that he can excite a prejudice against 
that court, and on the wave of that prejudice ride into the Senate of 
the United States, when he could not get there on his own principles 
or his own merits. [Laughter and cheers; "Hit him again."] Sup- 
pose he should succeed in getting into the Senate of the United States, 
what then will he have to do with the decision of the Supreme Court 
in the Dred Scott case? Can he reverse that decision when he gets 
there? Can he act upon it? Has the Senate any right to reverse it 
or revise it? He will not pretend that it has. Then why drag the 
matter into this contest, unless for the purpose of making a false issue, 
by which he can direct public attention from the real issue. 

He has cited General Jackson in justification of the war he is making 
on the decision of the court. Mr. Lincoln misunderstands the history 
of the country if he believes there is any parallel in the two cases. It is 
true that the Supreme Court once decided that if a Bank of the United 
States was a necessary fiscal agent of the Government, it was consti- 
tutional, and if not, that it was unconstitutional, and also, that 
whether or not it was necessary for that purpose, was a political ques- 
tion for Congress, and not a judicial one for the courts to determine. 
Hence the court would not determine the bank unconstitutional. 
Jackson respected the decision, obeyed the law, executed it, and car- 
ried it into effect during its existence; [''That's so."] but after the 
charter of the bank expired and a proposition was made to create a 
new bank. General Jackson said, '' It is unnecessary and improper, and 
therefore I am against it on constitutional grounds as well as those of 
expediency. " Is Congress bound to pass every Act that is Constitu- 
tional? Why, there are a thousand things that are constitutional, but 
yet are inexpedient and unnecessary, and you surely would not vote 
for them merely because you had the right to? And because General 
Jackson would not do a thing which he had a right to do, but did not 
deem expedient or proper, Mr. Lincoln is going to justify himself in 
doing that which he has no right to do. [Laughter.] 



372 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

I ask him whether he is not bound to respect and obey the decisions 
of the Supreme Court as well as I?i- The Constitution has created that 
court to decide all constitutional questions in the last resort; and when 
such decisions have been made, they become the law of the land, 
[''That's so."] and you, and he, and myself, and every other good 
citizen, are bound by them. Yet he argues that I am bound by their 
decisions, and he is not. He says that their decisions are binding on 
Democrats, but not on RepubUcans. [Laughter and applause.] Are 
not Republicans bound by the laws of the land as well as Democrats? 
And when the court has fixed the construction of the Constitution on 
the validity of a given law, is not their decision binding upon Republi- 
cans as well as upon Democrats? [" It ought to be. "] Is it possible 
that you Republicans have the right to raise your mobs and oppose the 
laws of the land and the constituted authorities , and yet hold us Dem- 
ocrats bound to obey them? 

My time is within half a minute of expiring, and all I have to say is, 
that I stand by the laws of the land. ["That's it; hurrah for Doug- 
las. "] I stand by the Constitution as our fathers made it, by the laws 
as they are enacted, and by the decisions of the courts, upon all points 
within their jurisdiction as they are pronounced by the highest tribu- 
nal on earth; and any man who resists these must resort to mob law 
and violence to overturn the government of laws. 

When Senator Douglas concluded the applause was perfectly furi- 
ous and overwhelming. 

[Galesburg, III., Democrat, October 9, 1858] 

GALESBUHG DEBATE 



Great Outpouring- of the People!— 20,000 Persons Present 

The expectations of all parties were far surpassed in the results of 
Thursday. The crowd was immense notwithstanding the remarkably 
heavy rains of the day previous, and the sudden change during the 
night to a fircely blowing, cutting wind which lasted during the 
whole day, ripping and tearing banners and sending signs pell mell 
all over town. 

At early dawn our gunners announced the opening day and at an 
early hour the people began to pour in from every direction in wagons, 
on horseback and on foot. 

i-Reads:"me"for "I." 



THE GALESBURG DEBATE 373 

At about ten o'clock the Burlington train arrived with Mr. Douglas 
and a large delegation of both Douglas and Lincoln men from the 
West. 

Mr. Douglas was escorted to the Bancroft House, when a portion of 
the students of Lombard University presented him with a beautiful 
banner. A well prepared but somewhat fulsome address was made on 
its delivery by Geo. Elwell, who was followed by two young ladies, 
each with a symbolic address, the whole of which we could not catch. 

Mr. Douglas responded with great felicity and his friends were well 
satisfied with their part of the performance. The banner was a " true 
circle" of silk, with a beautifully embroidered wreath within which 
was inscribed " Presented to Stephen A. Douglas, by the students of 
Lombard University. " The speaker said the " circle " was emblem- 
atic of Mr. Douglas's course. So it was in a different sense from that 
meant by them. 

Mr. Douglas was then escorted to the Bonney House, where a large 
multitude of all parties gathered to see and shake hands with him. 

At 12 o'clock the Republicans with the military went to meet Mr. 
Lincoln, who was to come in with the Knoxville delegation. — Hard by 
two they reached the place of rendezvous; when the delegation came 
along " mammoth " would not describe it. It was like one of Cobb's 
tales, of monstrous length and to he continued. 

Lincoln was escorted to the house of Mr. Henry R. Sanderson, when 
a reception speech was made by T. G. Frost, Esq., and the most beauti- 
ful banner of the day prepared by the ladies of Galesburg was pre- 
sented by Miss Ada Hurd. It was an American Shield handsomely 
embroidered. Upon one side was the inscription, "Presented to 
THE Hon. a. Lincoln by the Republican Ladies of Galesburg, 
Oct. 7, 1858." On the reverse was the Declaration of Independence 
upon a scroll, executed with a pen by a Mr. Clark of Peoria. Miss 
Hurd, who is of a queenly appearance, rode up at the head of the 
troop of equestrians and receiving the banner from the attendant 
presented it in a very neat and well spoken address. Mr. Lincoln's 
remarks in reply were very happy. It was the most beautiful cere- 
mony of the day. 

A banner was also presented to Mr. Lincoln from the students of 
Lombard University. 

By this time the delegations of both parties began to come in strong. 

—13 



374 ILLINOIS SHITORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Mercer Co. turned out a large delegation for Douglas as well as a large 
one for Lincoln; but Wataga, Henderson and the adjoining villages 
bore off the palm for numbers, their delegation alone being over half 
a mile in length. 

Monmouth sent up a rousing delegation for Lincoln. Somebody 
down there is great on crayon sketches, as the banners of this delega- 
tion were of the most amusing kind. 

First — came one inscribed the " Monmouth Glee Club. " 

Second — A crayon sketch of Douglas and Toombs "modifying," in 
which Douglas with pen in hand is erasing the clause referring the 
Kansas Constitution back to the people. 

Third — A representation of Jim Davidson with his head just 
stricken from his shoulders. In a scroll Jim learns that it is 184 miles 
to Monmouth. 

Fourth — "Dug at Freeport," ''my platform," in which Douglas 
stands "reversed" upon the Dred Scott platform, one leg of which is 
giving way beneath. 

Fifth — " Coming from Egypt, " in which Douglas roaring with rage, 
is being punched up with Lincoln's cane. 

Other banners in that delegation we have not time to notice. 

Of the notable banners in the procession, we observed the following: 

A representation of the Capitol, and over the Senate room door 
Douglas' complaint, " He's got my place. " Douglas is turning away 
while Lincoln is coming in. 

A representation of a two donky act, or Douglas attempting to ride 
Popular Sovereignty and Dred Scott. His straddle is remarkable but 
not equal to the task as both animals kicking up their heels send him 
sprawling. 

"Knox College Goes for Lincoln," stretched across the south 
front and north end of the College building. 

"We Will Subdue You" Stephen A. Douglas. 

" Abe Lincoln the Champion of Freedom. " Upon this banner 
was also a portrait of ' Long Abe. ' 

Three figures, one taking a chair from beneath Mr. Douglas and 
dropping him plump upon the floor, at which he exclaims, " Oh my 
place!" Mr. Lincoln standing by blandly remarks, "The people say 
it." The "place" Mr. Douglas referred to was doubtless the portion 
which came in contact with the floor. 



THE GALESBURG DEBATE 375 

Upon a four sided banner the following : " Macomb Lincoln Club. " 
" We honor the man who brands the Traitor and Nullifier. " " Small- 
fisted Farmers, Mud Sills of Society, Greasy Mechanics, for A. Lin- 
coln. " " The dose of milk Abe gave Dug down in Egypt made him 
very sick. " 

A well painted banner with a terrible Lion on one side and ditto Dog 
on the other, with the inscriptions " Douglas the dead Lion, " " Lin- 
coln the living Dog. " If we are not mistaken this came upon the 
cars from the west with Douglas. 

The best banner upon the ground was a painting of the locomotive 
'' Freedom " with a long train of Free State cars rushing round a curve, 
with the warning, " Clear the track for Freedom, " while sticking upon 
the track a little in advance of the train was Douglas' ox cart laden 
with cotton. His negro driver had just taken the alarm and spring- 
ing up in terror exclaims, " Fore God, Massa, I bleves we's in danger!" 

Another ludicrous banner had a representation upon one side of 
Douglas going down to Egypt, pail in hand, to bring Abe to his milk. 
On the other, " How he succeeded. " — Like Mr. Sniggs, in his first 
effort at milking a cow, he gave the customary command to "histe" 
the foot. Abe histed, and Douglas and his pail are seen "laying 
around loose. " 

Star spangled banners were numberless. 

The principal banner on the Douglas side was a large blue one with 
an inscription in favor of Douglas and Popular Sovereignty. Litho- 
graphs of Douglas abounded. 

Knox College, by the east end of which the stand was erected, was 
gaily decorated with flags and streamers. Immediately over the 
stand was one bearing the inscription, '' Knox College for Lincoln. " 

At noon the people began to collect and for an hour before the 
appointed time more than ten thousand people stood waiting the 
arrival of the speakers, and in the meantime the crowd was addressed 
by Mr. Reed of the Aledo Record, in a spicy and humorous speech, so 
the Lincoln friends thought. 

At 2 o'clock Lincoln and Douglas in two four horse carriages driven 
abreast, were escorted to the grounds by the military and a large body 
of citizens on horseback and on foot. 

Hon. James Knox, of Knoxville, acted as chairman, and as soon as 
order could be obtained he introduced Mr. Douglas who by the 



376 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

arrangement was to occupy one hour, then Mr. Lincohi an hour and 
a half and Mr. Douglas a half hour in conclusion. 

[Galesburg, III., Democrat, October 9, 1858] 
The Monmouth Republican Glee Club enlivened the evening with 
some of the most laughable songs, ground out by one of their number, 
who gets them up to "suit the times. One was written after the 
speeches of the day were over and portrayed the manner in which 
Lincoln shaved Douglas, in the most side splitting style. The Club 
is said to be making more Republicans in Warren county than all 
the stumpers put together. 

[Missouri Republican, St. Louis, October 11, 1858] 

THE CAMPAIGN IN ILLINOIS 



Joint Discussion at Galesburg-.— Doug-las "Concludes" on Lincoln, 

and Talies Him between Wind and Water.— Twenty 

Thousand People Present 

Tremont House, Chicago 
October 8, 1857 

Editor Missouri Republican: 1 have just returned from the chief 
city of the Abolitionists of this State, where I was attending the fifth 
debate between Douglas and Lincoln. I have come back with plenty 
of interesting notes, which I purpose to empty into your sheet for the 
edification of your many readers. 

The Abolitionists, by their committee of arrangements, had pub- 
lished a secret circular to call upon their followers to make a great 
show of numbers and banners for this occasion, which, I take it, 
indicates the fact that they are badly weakened about the knees. * 
They know that the battle has been already won by Douglas, and it 
is only by the most extraordinary exertions that they can whip in 
their crestfallen men. Without any such claptrap, the Democrats 
turned out " formidable as an army with banners. " You could not 
only discover the proportion of each, as they entered the city in long 
processions, by the badges they wore, or by the shouts they gave, 
but you could more signally "spot" them by noting that the Abo- 
litionists, obeying the behests of their leading men, paraded dirty 
designs and beastly caricatures, indicating their vexation at the way 
things are working, while the Democrats, having some respect for 
the feelings of their neighbors, bore no banners but such as served 
to decorate the procession, and such as no living man could take 



THE GALESBURG DEBATE 377 

exception to unless it be some very radical Abolitionist, who might 
object to the number of stars which flaunted on the American ensign. 

Senator Douglas had spent the day prior to the discussion at Mon- 
mouth whence he came by morning train, which, though it had to it 
eleven cars, could not afford sitting room, and barely standing room 
for its passengers. At every station, large and small, between the 
two places fresh accessions were made, and this, too, although an hour 
or two later an excursion train ran over the same track. It was 
likewise filled to overflow. 

Lincoln came from some place, to this deponent unknown. 

During the entire morning the delegations were coming in from all 
quarters, and as the Senator's face was seen in the window of an upper 
room at the hotel, thousands stopped and cheered him, and wished 
him God speed. The old men were out with their growing and grown 
sons, and the old women were along — indeed it would be harder to 
describe who all were present than to say who of the adjoining counties 
were not. 

When Mr. Douglas arrived he was received by a well ordered pro- 
cession, led by a band, and headed by three military companies, the 
Light Guards, the Scandinavians (a Swiss company) , and the artillery. 
Placed in a four horse barouche, he was conducted to the stand, where 
a short reception address was made to him by Mr. J. B. Boggs. When 
Mr. D. had, in a few words, replied, a young man named Ellewood, a 
student in Lombard University, stepped forward and presented the 
Senator with a satin banner, the gift of his co-laborers in study. 
Another banner was then paraded on which was the following in- 
scription — "And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders 
among the people. They set up false witnesses which said this man 
ceaseth not to speak blasphemous words against the law, but they 
were not able to resist the wisdom with which he spoke. " 

Escorted then to his hotel he was constantly aroused by the arrival 
of delegations from out of town and by the noise of their enthusiastic 
cheering. Hickory poles were plenty in these several Democratic pro- 
cessions, and among other things were two sets of ladies, each repre- 
senting a State till the duplicate of States was complete. 

When all was ready for the speaking a joint procession was made 
and Lincoln and his suite, and Douglas and his drove side by side as 
near to the stand as the presence of twenty thousand people, probably 
two thirds being Democrats, around it would permit. Through this 



378 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

compact mass of human bodies, these several parties had to force their 
way to the stand which, when attained, afforded a rehef from the 
pushing and squeezing which can be appreciated but not described. 
I observed in the crowd what Lincohi remarked would be a good 
likeness of him but it was too red in the face. I thought so too, but 
it was after a debate when Douglas gets at him in style, I guess, for 
the face was a little longer than a horse's collar and the eyes looked 
woefully like weeping. 

B. B. 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, October 9, 1858] 

GREAT DEBATE BETWEEN DOUGLAS AND LINCOLN AT 

GALESBUBG 



Sixteen to Eig"liteen Thousand Persons Present.— Largest Procession 
of the Campaig-n for Old Abe.— New and Powerful Argument by 
Mr. Lincoln.— Doug-las Tells the Same Old Story.— Verbatim Re- 
port of the Speeches 

An Artie frost, accompanied by a sour north-west wind, invaded the 
city of Galesburg and county of Knox, on Thursday, and sent Repub- 
licans and Democrats shivering indoors. The preceding day and 
night had brought a semi-deluge of rain. The elements seemed to 
have conspired to dampen and congeal all political ardor, but the 
attendance upon the public debate between Lincoln and Douglas was 
some two or three thousand larger than the largest of its predecessors. 

Until ten o'clock the streets gave no evidence of anything unusual 
about to transpire. The weather, notwithstanding the sun shone 
bright and clear, was too tedious for anything but the most explosive 
enthusiasm. Shortly after ten, Mr. Douglas arrived on a train of cars 
from the west, and was escorted from the depot by a respectable pro- 
cession. Mr. Lincoln's approach to the city was heralded by a long 
procession of citizens of Galesburg, the most noticeable feature of 
which was a cavalcade of one hundred ladies and gentlemen on horse- 
back. This escort moved out of town on the Knoxville road about 
eleven o'clock in the direction Mr. Lincoln was expected to come. 
Half an hour afterwards The Great Procession of the Campaign 
entered the city from the East. It was about long enough, taken 
altogether, to reach around the town and tie in a bow knot. It 
marched through the principle streets of the city from east of the 



1 

1 



THE GALESBURG DEBATE 379 

public square, thence south two squares, thence north and east two 
squares, crossing its own track. At this point the rear end of the 
procession had not yet entered town. Banners and devices of every 
description fluttered in the wind. One of them, which elicited shouts 
of laughter, was a painting of the Capitol at Washington, over which 
were the words ''March 4, 1S59." The Little giant was observed 
blubbering at the door " Lincoln has got my 'place. " 

The ceremonies at the house of Mr. Sanderson, w^here Mr. Lincoln 
alighted, were of unusually pleasant character. In addition to the 
customary welcoming speech, the students of Lombard University 
presented Mr. Lincoln a fine banner; after which one of the ladies of 
the cavalcade. Miss Hurd, of Galesburg, rode forward, and presented 
a beautiful shield and coat of arms, worked in silk of the " red, white 
and blue." On one side was the inscription: 

PRESENTED TO HON. ABRAHAM LINCOLN 

BY THE 

REPUBLICAN LADIES OF GALESBURG 
Oct. 7, 1858 

On the other was the whole of the Declaration of Independence in 
fine and beautiful handwriting. I cannot help adding that Miss 
Kurd's part in this ceremony was performed with peculiar grace and 
dignity. 

Several other processions came during the morning — a decided 
preponderance of which carried banners for " Lincoln and Kellogg. " 
Several long special trains came also — that from Chicago and the inter- 
mediate stations consisting of eleven cars. A special train from Peoria 
consisting of twenty-two cars and over two thousand -persons, did not 
arrive until nearly five o'clock — the engine having given out with the 
unexpected enormous load, some miles east of the city. 

The speaking commenced at half past two in the college grounds — 
the platform having been erected on the east side of the fine college 
building. The crowd was unprecedented. The number on the ground 
during the afternoon must have exceeded the audience at the Freeport 
debate by 3000. The weather continued cold and raw all day, but very 
few left the grounds until the speaking was concluded at half past 
five. 



380 ILLINOIS, HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

[Chicago Times, October 9, 1858] 

THE CAMPAIGN.-DOUGLAS AND LINCOLN AT GALES- 
BURG 



Immense Concourse of People Present.— Upwards of 20,000 on the 
Ground. Great Revolution in Popular Sentiment in Knox County. 
— Blacli Republicanism Beaten in Its Strong"hold and Out-numbered 
by the Democracy.— Splendid Reception of Senator Doug-las.— In- 
teresting* Debate.— Lincoln Ag"ain Defeated before the People 

SPEECHES, INCIDENTS, ETC., ETC. 

The fifth joint debate between Senator Douglas and Mr. Lincoln 
took place at Galesburg on Thursday last. A larger number of people 
than have been present on any former occasion were in attendance, 
from fifteen to twenty thousand being on the ground. The Black 
Republicans had made every effort to bring out a large crowd, sparing 
neither money or pains to induce their friends to come out. As early 
as the 13th of September their committee addressed private letters 
to the leading Republicans in various sections of the surrounding 
country, begging them to bring their people to Galesburg in delega- 
tions with flags and banners; but notwithstanding all this drumming, 
the Democrats outnumbered them always two to one, and made a 
much finer demonstration. 

Senator Douglas arrived in Galesburg at 10 o'clock, and was re- 
ceived by the Galesburg Light Guards, the Scandinavians, a corps 
composed of our foreign -born citizens, the artillery company of Gales- 
burg, and the Democracy. J. Boggs, esq., welcomed him in the 
following speech : 

Senator Douglas made an appropriate response, after which the 
ceremony of presentation to him of a magnificent banner, beautifully 
worked by the young women of the Lombard University, took place. 
The presentation was made on behalf of the young ladies by G. W. 
Elwell, esq., and, in the course of it, two of the young ladies united 
their voices with his in complimenting their illustrious visitor. We 
give their remarks entire. 

Senator Douglas responded with much feeling. The banner was 
composed of white satin, trimmed with blue, upon which was worked 
a splendid wreath of flowers. It bore the inscription, "From the 
Democracy of Lombard University to Stephen A. Douglas. " After 



THE GALESBURG DEBATE 381 

these interesting ceremonies, Senator Douglas was escorted to the 
Bonney House which from the time of his arrival, was thronged with 
an immense crowd of people, whilst the street in front was crowded 
with processions passing and repassing, filling the air with shouts for 
Douglas. 

Lincoln arrived about 12 o'clock, and was escorted into town by the 
Republican procession, which numbered about one-third the strength 
of ours, and was a poor one so far as the display of flags, and banners 
and decorations were concerned. If a cheer was proposed for Lin- 
coln, the faint response it called forth was instantly drowned in the 
overwhelming shout that the Democracy would send up for Douglas, 
and the Republicans were forced to admit that they were outnumbered 
and beaten. In 1854 it was as much as a man's life was worth, in 
Galesburg, to advocate Democratic principles; but now owing to the 
wonderful change in popular sentiment within the past year or two, 
Democracy has hosts of friends and supporters in this abolition 
stronghold, and on Thursday last had possession of the town. The 
debate was a most interesting one, and we commend it to the careful 
attention of our readers. Mr. Lincoln experienced one of the most 
complete defeats which he has made during the campaign. His 
argument was lamentably weak, and as usual he confined himself 
to petty personal charges and insinuations against the Judges of the 
Supreme Court of the United States, refusing to meet Senator Doug- 
las upon any of the great principles advocated by him. He attempted 
to pander to the passions and prejudices of his abolition friends by 
again declaring his predilection for negro equahty, and in his rejoinder 
Senator Douglas took occasion to expose his inconsistencies by com- 
paring these declarations with Lincoln's denunciations of negro 
equality, and negro citizenship at Jonesboro and Charleston. 

The day was a most unpleasant one for speaking in the open air. 
A strong northwest wind was blowing, which rendered talking difficult ; 
and although the stand was built on the east side of Knox College 
(the meeting being held in the college grounds), the current of air 
which swept around the building rendered it impossible for the speak- 
ers at times to make themselves heard at all. Besides this, the cold 
was intense. Mr. Lincoln, when he mounted the stand, was nervous 
and trembling; whether from cold, or through fear of what was in 
store for him, we are unable to say; but before the close of the debate, 



382 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

he was the most abject picture of wretchedness we have ever witnessed. 
His knees knocked together, and the chattering of his teeth could be 
heard all over the stand. When Senator Douglas replied to his 
charge that he had forced a set of resolutions at Ottawa, he looked 
pitiful beyond expression, and curled himself up in a corner to avoid 
facing the bitter denunciation of the Senator and the scorn and deri- 
sion with which he was treated by the crowd. The speeches will 
repay persual, and we earnestly hope that they will be carefully read 
by both our friends and opponents. We now proceed to give a cor- 
rect and faithful report of both parties: 

When Senator Douglas concluded, the applause was perfectly 
furious and overwhelming, he was surrounded by an immense mass of 
people who accompanied him to his hotel, which, during the whole 
evening was thronged with people going and coming to congratulate 
him upon his great success; whilst Lincoln entirely forgotten, was 
taken care of by a few friends, who wrapped him in flannels and tried 
to restore the circulation of blood in his almost inanimate body. 
Poor Lincoln! He was not even visible to the friends who came to 
weep with him. 

[Chicago Times, October 12, 1858] 
Editor's Correspondence 

VIVID DESCRIPTION OF THE (lALESBURG MEETING 

Galesburg, III., October 7, 1858 
Messrs. Editors: To-day is a great day for Galesburg — great for 
Illinois. The fifth discussion between the Hon. S. A. Douglas and 
Abraham Lincoln which was set for to-day, came off, and the events 
of the day signal one of the most thorough and complete triumphs 
that the great Democratic party has experienced. I say this, because 
it happened right here in what is notoriously known to be the very 
hot-bed of abolitionism in Illinois. 

At the early dawn of day, our citizens were aroused from their slum- 
bers by the continued booming of cannon which made the welkin ring 
with its echoing reports. The weather was chilly, cold, an autumn 
wind prevailed, and only for that, it would have been one of the most 
pleasant of days; however, this was nothing, great events were in store 
for the people. At about 10 o'clock a. m. an immense crowd gathered 
at the depot where our several military companies assembled antici- 



THE GALESBURG DEBATE 383 

pating the arrival of the Burlington train in which was the Little 
Giant. Presently it arrived — there were 12 or 14 cars added to the 
train, and all crowded to overflowing with Democrats from the west- 
ern part of this count}'', and a very few abolitionists — in the midst of 
the great crowd which immediately surrounded the Senator, I was 
standing, waiting the time when the welcoming speech should be 
delivered. The crowd moved to the steps of the Bancroft House, 
where the Hon. J. B. Boggs welcomed the Senator to Knox county in 
a short speech, to which a most happy reply was given. Immediately 
a delegation from Lombard University approached where the 
Senator was standing, and through their chairman, Mr. G. W. Elwell, 
a young gentleman of promising attainments, presented him with a 
beautiful banner which was made by the young ladies of that insti- 
tution. The banner was emblematical of the Senator's public career 
— one continued round of consistencies — wreathed with flowers, and 
encircled by white and blue ribbons which spoke of the virtue of his 
life, and his unimpeachable fidelity to party and principle. The 
banner had written on its folds the inscription : " The Democracy of 
Lombard University to Stepheji A. Douglas." 

The Senator entered a carriage, drawn by six beautifully caparis- 
oned horses, and the mass formed into procession, proceeding to the 
Bonney House. We need say nothing of the great length of the 
cortege, nor of the many enthusiastic shouts which rent the air as 
the Senator passed by the thousands of individuals who thronged the 
sidewalks. Main street was full as it could possibly be; it seemed 
that everybody gathered — and brought all their relations. A "vast 
sea of human faces" met my vision which ever way I looked; before 
me, beside me and behind me, thousands of men looked eagerly 
toward the carriage which contained the Hon. Senator, and the eager 
aspects of the crowd proved the interest his presence excited. Dele- 
gations from all the surrounding country began making themselves 
visible. From the flourishing city of Abingdon, in this county, a 
delegation of some 500 men arrived, with many banners flying to the 
breeze, and filled the air with loud shouts of approbation for the 
course of the great expounder of the doctrine of our party. At the 
hour of one, the various delegations formed into one large common 
procession which was several miles in length, each vehicle containing 
from 10 to 20 persons, and holding aloft banners with appropriate 
inscriptions. Large cars, containing each 35 young ladies, dressed 



384 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

in white, with banners representing the States of the Union and the 
territories, these last having the words, "Popular Sovereignty" 
written on their banners. It was an imposing spectacle. 

At half past 1 p. m., the hosts commenced gathering at the large and 
spacious park — which adds so much to the comeliness of our city — 
where a stand was erected — where the speakers were to hold forth, 
and where thousands had assembled. 

Mr. Douglas was followed in the debate by that scare-crow looking 
individual, " Old Abe, " or, as the numerous ejaculations of the specta- 
tors indicated — " Spot. " 

If he had any dignity — if in the course of the previous discussions 
he entered into the polemic with dignity, he lost it all here to-day. He 
descended to the level of the street blackguard, and vilified Judge 
Douglas in a most ungentlemanly manner. Many a Republican had 
his cheek to blanch with shame at the unmanly attacks that this man 
Lincoln made upon Judge Douglas. Republicans told me that Lin- 
coln over-stepped the rules of gentlemanly conduct when he plead his 
case, by wilfully, maliciously, and falsely charging Senator Douglas 
with fraud and forgery! 

In the course of his harangue he remembered that Judge Douglas' 
speech was identical with those he had delivered in the previous 
debates. He repented that candid and truthful acknowledgment 
when the Judge said : " Would to Heaven he could say the same for 
Lincoln, " for he (Abe) delivered himself of speeches suited to locali- 
ties — as the reports would demonstrate. 

Whilst the Judge was fastening him to a very awkward position, 
with the most unequivocal truths — telling of the loathing and scorn 
he felt for such charges, Abe gazed at him with a blank stare, as if 
fascinated, and looked a humiliating askance of pity, which plainly 
told how simply he repented him of his false charges. Democrat 

[Daily Whig, Quincy, 111., October 9, 1858] 

LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS AT GALESBURG 



12,000 to 15,000 People Present! Four-Fifths Republicans!— "Old 

Abe" Skins the "Little Giant!" 

Thursday last was the day appointed for a joint discussion at Gales- 
burg, between Hon. Abraham Lincoln and Judge Douglas. 



THE GALESBURG DEBATE 385 

We arrived on the ground about half past 12 o'clock, and at that 
time a dense crowd surrounded the stand, while the streets of the 
city, and the roads leading to the city, were alive with people. 

About 3 o'clock, Judge Douglas was introduced to the audience 
by Hon. Jos. Knox, and was received with such a faint cheer by his 
few friends in attendance, that it caused universal laughter. He 
spoke for one hour; and in the spirit of a man who was suffering 
martyrdom. 

Douglas actually foamed at the mouth, during his speech. It may 
have been the milk that he imbibed while sojourning in Egypt; but 
the general belief was that it was foam. It should be borne in mind 
that hydrophobia is not confined to the dog-days. We don't wish to 
lull the people here into any false security, by stating that it was milk 
that whitened the corners of Douglas' mouth, when it might actually 
be the saliva of incipient madness. Forewarned is to be forearmed. 

When Douglas concluded, "Old Abe" mounted to the stand, and 
was received with three such tremendous cheers as made the welkin 
ring again. His happy, good-humored countenance — in such marked 
contrast with that of Douglas, which is black and repulsive enough to 
turn all the milk in Egypt sour — at once cheered and animated 
the immense crowd. They pressed forward to the stand; but, when 
he commenced, the struggle ceased, for so clear, ringing, and distinct 
was every word he uttered, that he could be heard by every man in 
the crowd. He met, and successfully refuted, every argument made 
by Judge Douglas. 

[Chicago Democrat, October 9, 1858] 

LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS AT GALESBUEG 

Eleven carloads of people came on the Chicago train, and from other 
directions, large delegations arrived during the day with flags, banners 
and other devices, nearly all of which were for Lincoln. 

Unfortunately, a very large excursion train from Peoria, consisting 
of 22 cars, all filled with people who were coming to the debate, met 
with an accident on the Peoria and Oquawka Railroad, and was de- 
layed so that they did not arrive until 4 o'clock, just as the debate was 
closing, which was a great disappointment. 



386 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

[Peoria Transcript, October 8, 1858] 

THE GALESBURG DEBATE 

The fourth great debate between Lincoln and Douglas came off at 
Galesburg yesterday. Mr. Douglas having the opening and closing 
speech. It is estimated that between sixteen and eighteen thousand 
persons were present — much the largest crowd that has yet been called 
together during the campaign. 

Of the debate we are unable to give any account, the train from this 
city, consisting of twenty-four cars loaded with two thousand passen- 
gers, having, by an unfortunate combination of circumstances, been 
delayed on its way until near the close of the discussion. We shall 
print the report of the speeches in full as soon as they come to hand 
and shall relate the sad experience of the Peoria delegation as soon 
as we have slept off our disappointment and fatigue — having arrived 
home at a late hour last night. 

[Chicago Times, October 13, 1858] 

A MOTTLED CANDIDATE 

The next appearance of Mr. Lincoln was at Galesburg, the center of 
abolitiondom in this state. He had damaged himself extensively in 
the estimation of the abolitionists by his Jonesboro and Charleston 
speeches, and they insisted that he should decamp, and put on the 
black garb of negro equality once more. He did so, and behold the 
white man of Jonesboro and the Dred Scottite of Charleston came forth 
at Galesburg clothed in the habiliments of Uncle Tom, praying the 
admission of his colored brethren to the rights and privileges of white 
men. He speaks at Quincy today, and at Alton on Friday, and the 
regalia of the "negro's friend" will be thrown aside, and he will 
clamor again against the negro race, and the ridiculous idea of their 
ever becoming citizens. 

Such, men of Illinois, is the candidate before you asking for your 
suffrages. He belongs to the white men's party at one place, and 
anon! he becomes the most piteous complainant for the poor race 
which Douglas would make " inferior. " At Charleston he declares 
negroes to be inferior in the eyes of God and man, and should be 
treated as their Creator intended they should be treated — as " infer- 
iors " — men outside of the political party — and at Galesburg he asserts 
that God created them the^'political equals of the white race, and that 
it is inhuman and anti-Christian to deny them that equality. tSuch 



THE GALESBURG DEBATE 387 

is the mottled candidate. Such are the mottled principles, and such 
the mottled exhibition presented to the people of Illinois in the person 
of Abraham Lincoln, 

[Illinois State Register, October 12, 1858] 

THE GALESBURG DEBATE 

Nearly all of our available space to-day is occupied with a report of 
the speeches of Douglas and Lincoln at Galesburg — The meeting was 
very large — much the largest of the campaign. The republicans had 
spared neither money nor pains to have a large crowd, and letters had 
been sent to all parts of the country begging their people to be present. 
Notwithstanding all their efforts, the democrats outnumbered them 
two to one, and made a much finer and more imposing demonstration. 
A wonderful change seems to have been effected in that place for the 
democracy during the last year or two. 

Lincoln confined himself to his old hobby — that of making war upon 
the supreme court, and an attempt to pander to the prejudices of the 
abolitionists. He avowed himself in favor of negro equality, simply 
because he was in an abolition district. In his reply Senator Douglas 
showed him up in his true colors, by referring to his denunciations of 
the negro at Jonesboro and Charleston. The arguments of Lincoln 
were miserably weak, and all candid persons must, after a careful 
persual of the speeches, admit that he was badly worsted by Douglas. 

We trust that the speeches will be carefully read by men of all 
parties, as they will amply repay for the time thus employed. 

The republicans are fast becoming disheartened, and are daily losing 
ground. Their "spotty" principles are not adapted to the tastes of 
any person claiming to be in favor of the Union, the constitution and 
the laws. 

The conclusion of the debate will appear tomorrow. 

[Chicago Journal, October 8, 1858] 

THE FIFTH JOINT DEBATE BETWEEN LINCOLN AND 

DOUGLAS 

Galesburg, Oct. 7, 1858 
The fifth joint debate between the champion of bogus ''Popular 
Sovereignty" and Mr. Lincoln, his formidable Free Laborer opponent, 
took place here this afternoon in the presence of enthusiastic thous- 
ands. It is estimated that there were not less than 10,000 people 



388 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

present, and after a diligent circulation among the crowd, we came 
to the conclusion that at least two-thirds of the great multitude of 
voters were Lincoln men. 

Eleven car-loads of people came on the Chicago train, and from 
other directions large delegations arrived during the day, with flags, 
banners and other devices, nearly all of which were for Lincoln. 

Unfortunately a very large excursion train from Peoria, consisting 
of twenty-two cars, all filled with people who were coming to the 
debate, met with an accident on the Peoria and Oquawka railroad, 
and was delayed so that it did not arrive until 4 o'clock, just as the 
debate was closing. It was a sore disappointment. Your corres- 
pondent was in this train, and it is therefore impossible for him, not 
having heard the debate, to give you an account of what was said by 
the speakers; but the opinions of those who did hear the speeches, as 
far as I can ascertain, coincide pretty generally that Lincoln com- 
pletely used up the Little Giant. — The Lincoln men here are full of 
enthusiasm, and feel that our noted champion of freedom. Free 
Soil and Free Labor has achieved one more great and telling triumph 
over the shifting, time-serving and Slavery-worshipping Douglas. 

Yours in the good cause. W. 



CHAPTER X 

THE QUINCY DEBATE 

[Herald,^ Qnincy, III., September 29, 1858] ^ 

MlSSOUm COMING TO HEAR DOUGLAS 

LiNEUs, Linn Co., Mo., Sept. 25 
Austin Brooks — Dear Sir: The people in northern Missouri are 
taking a Hvely interest in the canvass in Illinois between Judge Dou- 
glas and Mr. Lincoln, and the Democrats are wishing success to the 
"Little Giant." 

Although Lineus is 120 miles from Quincy, there are many here 
making preparations to go to Quincy, and be there on the 13th of next 
month, at the speaking. It is a long way to travel to hear a man 
speak, where we have to stage it nearly half the way, but such is the 
enthusiasm of the people, and their curiosity to hear the exponent of 
popular sovereignty, that from 5,000 to 10,000 will go from Missouri 

to be there on the occasion. 

Otselic 

[Gate City, Keokuk, Iowa, October 5, 1858] 

HO, FOR QUINCY 

The Republicans will meet at the Gate City Reading Room at 10 
o'clock today, to consult as to going to Quincy on the 13th to hear the 
discussion between Lincoln and Douglas. 

[Whig, Quincy, III., October 7, 1858] 

THE FRIENDS OF HON. ABRAHAM LINCOLN 

The city and country are invited to rally in their strength, at 
Quincy on Wednesday, Oct. 13th. Abraham Lincoln and Judge 
Douglas will address the masses then assembled. Mr. Lincoln is 
expected to arrive at Quincy on a special train, from the north, on 
the morning of the 13th, at half-past 9 o'clock, at which time the 
Republicans from the city and country, under the charge of the 
Marshal of the day, will proceed in procession, to receive our cham- 
pion at the depot, and conduct him to the Court House. It is hoped 
our country friends will be in the city in time to co-operate with the 

389 



390 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

Republicans of the city. The programme and order of procession 
will be published by the Marshal in a day or two. 

All who desire to hear the true principles of the Republican party 
expounded, and the unsound doctrines of the Douglas Democracy 
exposed, are invited to attend. 

By order of the Republican Committee of Arrangements, 

A. Jonas, Ch'n. 

[Whig, Quincy, 111., October 11, 1858] 

DEBATE BETWEEN LINCOLN AND DOUGLAS 

Great preparations are being made for the Grand debate to come 
off in this city on Wednesday next, the 13th. inst. It is expected that 
one of the largest crowds that ever assembled in Quincy, will be pres- 
ent. Our friends, in all parts of the country, promise to be on hand. 

Again we urge upon Republicans to come, and hear the great cham- 
pion of Freedom, 

[Chicago Press and Tribune, October 11, 1858] 

A DOUGLAS CROWD ENGAGED 

(Correspondence of the Press and Tribune) 

Galesburg, Oct. 7, 1858 
A great joint debate between Lincoln and Douglas comes off at 
Quincy on the 13th of October, and I have a word or two to say to j^ou 
about it. I am living down in Pike County, Illinois, and day before 
yesterday, on my way up here, I had occasion to go over into Missouri, 
and there I found large handbills up calling on the Democrats of the 
State to turn out at Quincy. Several steamers have been engaged by 
the Missourians to convey them up the river. I was told by several of 
them that they intended to make Lincoln "dry up." What they 
meant by it I do not know. Douglas' friends in Quincy are looking to 
that State for their crowd on the 13th. Now I write you this for the 
purpose of having you urge the Republicans to turn out their strength, 
and sustain and cheer our noble champion by their presence. 

Old Pike 

[Gate City, Keokuk, Iowa, October 11, 1858] 

The Committee, appointed to make arrangements for the excursion 
to Quincy on the 13th to hear the Discussion between Lincoln and 
Douglas, recommend the Keokuk and St. Louis Packet and have 
made arrangements as follows: The Packet will leave here on the 





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THE QUINCY DEBATE 391 

13th at 0^ o'clock, carrying passengers to the discussion and back, 
leaving Quincy at 6 o'clock. Fare $1.50 for the round trip including 
supper. Republican Committee 



[Whig, Quincy, 111., October 11, 1858] 

THE LADIES, GOD BLESS THEM! 

We understand that a number of our Republican ladies intend to 
unite in the Lincoln demonstration on the 13th. inst., and that a large 
number of private carriages, loaded with the fair freight, will be in the 
procession. We are requested by the Marshal of the Day to state that 
the ladies generally are invited to attend, and a selected location in the 
procession will be reserved for carriages containing ladies. We hope 
our fair friends will grace the proceedings with their presence. Such 
has been the case at all points at which Lincoln, the champion of Free 
Labor and Free Territory, has spoken. 

[Herald, Quincy, 111., October 11, 1858] 

WELCOME DOUGLAS! 



Order of Procession 

On Wednesday morning, 13th. inst., at 9^ o'clock, a procession will 
be formed at the court house, in this city, in which every person who 
prefers the election of S. A. Douglas, to Abe Lincoln, to the United 
States Senate, is invited to participate. The procession will leave the 
court house at 9^ o'clock, precisely, and proceed to Broadway, up 
Broadway to 12th street, throwing right of procession to 12th and 
front south, where the delegations from the northern part of the county 
will be attached; thence to Maine, throwing right of procession to 
Maine and attach all the delegations from the east and south of the 
county; thence proceed down Maine to 3rd, up 3rd to the Virginia 
House, where the river delegations will be attached, and will there 
take the right of the procession, which will then proceed to Vermont, 
up Vermont to 7th, down 7th to Hampshire, down Hampshire to 4th, 
and around the public square to the south-east corner, where the pro- 
cession will enter and surround the stand, whereupon Judge Douglas 
will make his appearance, and in a few remarks, adjourn the crowd 



392 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

until half -past 2 o'clock p. m., when the discussion between himself 
and Mr. Lincoln will commence. 
Whig and Republican please copy. 

I. T. Wilson, Chief Marshal 

[Whig, Quiney, 111., October 12, 1858] 

PROGRAMME 



Reception of Lincoln 

On Wednesday, the 13th. inst., at 9 a. m., precisely, the Republican 
procession will be formed, for the purpose of proceeding to the Rail 
Road Depot, to receive the Hon. A. Lincoln. 

The line of procession will be formed on Broadway, the right resting 
on Sixth street. 

The Republican Clubs and citizens on foot will assemble and form 
in order, in Jefferson Square, and form the head of the procession. 
Clubs, and citizens in carriages and wagons, will form immediately 
in the rear of those on foot. The order of procession will be as follows : 

Marshal and Aids. 

Steig's Brass Band. 

Quiney and other Republican Clubs, on foot. 

Carriages, with Mr. Lincoln and Committee of Reception, and 
distinguished strangers. 

Private carriages, with ladies. 

Delegations in carriages and wagons. 

Delegations and citizens on horseback. 



Route of the Procession 

The procession on foot will advance to Front street. 

The carriages, wagons, and citizens on horseback, will remain and 
rest at Third street. 

The carriages for Mr. Lincoln and strangers, will receive them at the 
Depot, and Delegations and others arriving by the train, will be formed 
on foot, under the directions of Assistant Marshals. 

The foot procession, and carriages with Mr. Lincoln and strangers, 
will then countermarch up Broadway, and the entire procession will 
proceed down Third to Jerse}'^ street, up Jersey to Eighth, up Eighth 
to Hampshire, down Hampshire to Fourth, down Fourth to Maine 
up Maine to Fifth^ up Fifth to the front of the Court House, where Mr. 



THE QUINCY DEBATE 393 

Lincoln will be received and welcomed by the Committee of Reception. 

The procession will then be dismissed, and Mr. Lincoln taken by the 

Committee of Reception to the residence of 0. H. Browning, Esq. 

Speaking will commence at the stand in Washington Square, at 

2 o'clock p. M. 

E. K. Stone, Marshal 

[Herald, Quincy, 111., October 12, 1858] 

JUDGE DOUGLAS COMING TONIGHT 



Grand Torcliligrht Procession 

The friends of Judge Douglas will meet at The Court House, 
THIS EVENING AT 8 O'CLOCK 
where a grand procession with transparencies, torchlights, music, and 
live Democrats, will be formed under the direction of Dr. Wilson, 
Chief Marshal, and marched to the railroad depot, where Judge Doug- 
las wiU arrive by the nine o'clock train. 

Let every Democrat in the city be on hand at the hour — the pro- 
cession will move at precisely half past 8 o'clock — to extend to our 
distinguished Senator a hearty and enthusiastic welcome. 

[Whig, Quincy, 111., October 12, 1858] 

TORCH-LIGHT PROCESSION! 

On Wednesday night, the Republicans intend to have a grand torch- 
light procession. The most extensive preparations are being made. 
Let there be a general turn out. 

PREPAEATIONS 

Messrs. Bond and Holton have been appointed by the respective 
Committees of the Republican and Douglas parties, to attend to the 
erection of a stand and seats for tomorrow. Mr. N. Pinkham has very 
kindly and generously furnished the seats for the occasion, which are 
to be reserved entirely for the ladies — 800 of whom can thus be accom- 
modated. 

At the request of Dr. I. T. Wilson, Marshal for the Douglas pro- 
cession, we publish the programme in to-day's paper. 



394 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

LINCOLN BADGES 

Messrs. Laage & Barnum are prepared to furnish persons with any 
number of Lincoln Badges. We hope our RepubHcan friends will not 
fail to get one, and turn out with the procession tomorrow. 

[Whig, Oct. 16, 1858] 

THE DOUGLAS PICTURES 

The agent who sells photographic likenesses of Judge Douglas was 
in the city on Wednesday, hawking them through the crowd during 
the speeches. While Mr. Lincoln was closing the debate, a gentleman 
asked him if he was not willing to sell his pictures at a discount now? 
He said that he was — that the price was 75 cents when Douglas was 
speaking — that they had been reduced to 60 cents, and that he 
thought he would be compelled to reduce them to 25 cents before 
Lincoln got through! 

We don't believe there was a Douglasite in Quincy who had the 
remotest desire to buy a picture when Lincoln had concluded his half 
hour's speech. 

[Herald, Quincy, 111., October 16, 1858] 

JUDGE DOUGLAS RECEPTION 



The Torch-Lig-ht Procession 

The most magnificent display that has ever been made in this city, 
was made by the Democracy on Tuesday last, on the occasion of the 
reception of Judge Douglas. Our distinguished Senator was received 
at half past nine o'clock, at the railroad depot, amid the booming of 
cannon, and a most splendid display of torch lights and transparencies, 
accompanied by the welcoming, enthusiastic shouts of not less than 
three thousand live Democrats. — Four hundred blazing torches, and 
beautiful transparencies in proportion, with bands of music and a pro- 
cession more than half a mile in length, — and the streets of the city 
literally thronged with people, in honor of the great statesman of the 
day, was a sight that did the hearts of the Democracy good to witness, 
while it struck terror to the hearts of their black republican foes. Judge 
Douglas was escorted by the procession to the Quincy House, where, 
with three times three hearty and enthusiastic cheers, the Democracy 
left him for the night, repairing, however, to the public square, where 




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LINCOLN AT QUINCY 395 

they were addressed in a most able, entertaining and unanswerable 
manner by Dr. Bane, after which, the demonstrations of the evening 
were brought to a close. The black republicans themselves admit 
that nothing equal to this demonstration made by the friends of 
Judge Douglas, on Tuesday evening last, has ever been seen in Quincy. 

[Whig, Quincy, 111., October 16, 1858] 

THE TWO PEOCESSIONS 

A gentleman informed us that he timed the two processions of Wed- 
nesday, as they passed his place of business. The Republican pro- 
cession was 19^ minutes in passing, without any stoppages, while the 
Douglas procession was 12^ minutes, including a brief stoppage. This 
would indicate that the Republican procession was the largest by 
from 500 to 600. 

SIXTH JOINT DEBATE 

Quincy, October 13, 1858 



Mr. Lincoln's Speech 

At precisely half past two o'clock Mr. Lincoln was introduced to the 
audience and having been received by two cheers, he proceeded: 

Ladies and Gentlemen: I have had no immediate conference with 
Judge Douglas, but I will venture to say that^ he and I will perfectly 
agree that your entire silence, both when I speak and when he speaks, 
will be most agreeable to us. 

In the month of May, 1856, the elements in the State of Illinois, 
which have since been consolidated into the Republican party, as- 
sembled together in a State Convention at Bloomington. They adopted 
at that time what, in political language, is called a platform. In June 
of the same year the elements of the Republican party in the nation 
assembled together in a National Convention at Philadelphia. They 
adopted what is called the National Platform. In June, 1858 — the 
present year, — the Republicans of Illinois reassembled at Springfield, 
in State Convention, and adopted again their platform, as I suppose 
not differing in any essential particular from either of the former ones, 
but perhaps adding something in relation to the new developments of 
political progress in the country. 

The Convention that assembled in June last did me the honor, if it 

1 Omits "that." 



396 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

be one, and I esteem it such, to nominate me as their candidate for the 
United States Senate. I have supposed that, in entering upon this 
canvass, I stood generally upon these platforms. We are now met 
together on the 13th of October of the same year, only four months 
from the adoption of the last platform, and I am unaware that in this 
canvass, from the beginning until to-day, any one of our adversaries 
has taken hold of our platforms, or laid his finger upon anything that 
he calls wrong in them. 

In the very first one of these joint discussions between Senator 
Douglas and myself. Senator Douglas, without alluding at all to these 
platforms, or any one of them, of which I have spoken, attempted to 
hold me responsible for a set of resolutions passed long before the meet- 
ing of either one of these Conventions of which I have spoken. And as 
a ground for holding me responsible for these resolutions, he assumed 
that they had been passed at a State Convention of the Republican 
party, and that I took part in that Convention. It was discovered 
afterward that this was erroneous, that the resolutions which he en- 
deavored to hold me responsible for had not been passed by any State 
Convention anywhere, — had not been passed at Springfield, where he 
supposed they had, or assumed that they had; and that they had been 
passed in no Convention in which I had taken part. 

The Judge, nevertheless, was not willing to give up the point that he 
was endeavoring to make upon me, and he therefore thought to still 
hold me to the point that he was endeavoring to make, by showing 
that the resolutions that he read had been passed at a local Convention 
in the northern part of the State, although it was not a local Conven- 
tion that embraced my residence at all, nor one that reached, as I sup- 
pose, nearer than one hundred and fifty or two hundred miles of where 
I was when it met, nor one in which I took any part at all. He also 
introduced other resolutions, passed at other meetings, and by com- 
bining the whole, although they were all antecedent to the two State 
Conventions and the one National Convention I have mentioned, still 
he insisted, and now insists, as I understand, that I am in some way 
responsible for them. 

At Jonesboro, on our third meeting, I insisted to the Judge that I 
was in no way rightfully held responsible for the proceedings of this 
local meeting or Convention, in which I had taken no part, and in 
which I was in no way embraced ; but I insisted to him that if he 
thought I was responsible for every man or every set of men every 



LIXCOLX AT QUrSXY 397 

where, who happen to be my friends, the rule ought to work both ways, 
and he ought to be responsible for the acts and resolutions of all men 
or sets of men who were or are now his supporters and friends; [" Good, 
good. "] and gave him a pretty long string of resolutions, passed by- 
men who are now his friends, and announcing doctrines for which he 
does not desire to be held responsible. 

This still does not satisfy Judge Douglas. He still adheres to his 
proposition, that I am responsible for what some of my friends in dif- 
ferent parts of the State have done, but that he is not responsible for 
what his have done. At least, so I understand him. But in addition 
to that, the Judge, at our meeting in Galesburg, last week, undertakes 
to establish that I am guilty of a species of double dealing with the 
public ; that I make speeches of a certain sort in the north, among the 
Abolitionists, which I would not make in the south, and that I make 
speeches of a certain sort in the south which I would not make in the 
north. I apprehend, in the course I have marked out for myself, that 
I shall not have to dwell at xery great length upon this subject. 

As this was done in the Judge's opening speech at Galesburg, I had 
an opportunity, as I had the middle speech then, of saying something 
in answer to it. He brought forward a quotation or two from a speech 
of mine delivered at Chicago, and then, to contrast with it, he brought 
forward an extract from a speech of mine at Charleston, in which he 
insisted that I was greatly inconsistent, and insisted, that his conclu- 
sion followed, that I was playing a double part, and speaking in one 
region one way, and in another region another way. I have not time 
now to dwell on this as long as I would like, and wish^ only now to 
requote that portion of my speech at Charleston which the Judge 
quoted, and then make some comments upon it. This he quotes from 
me as being delivered at Charleston, and I believe correctly: — 

" I will say. then, that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing 
about in any way the social and poUtical equaUty of the white and black races : 
that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of making voters or jurors of ne- 
groes, nor of qualifying them to hold ofl&ee, nor to intermarry* with white 
people; and I will say, in addition to this, that there is a physical difference 
between the white and black races which will ever forbid the two races li\'ing 
together on terms of social and poUtieal equaUty. And inasmuch as they can- 
not so Uve, while they do remain together there must be the position of supe- 

ilnserts "I" before "wish." 
*Reads: "mingling" for "marry." 



398 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

rior and inferior, ^ and I, as much as any other man, am in favor of having the 
superior position assigned to the white race. " [' 'Good, good, ' ' and loud cheers . ] 

This, I believe, is the entire quotation from the Charleston speech, 
as Judge Douglas made it. His comments are as follows: — 

" Yes, here you find men who hurrah for Lincoln, and say he is right when he 
discards all distinction between races, or when he declares that he discards the 
doctrine that there is such a thing as a superior and inferior race; and Aboli- 
tionists are required and expected to vote for Mr. Lincoln because he goes for 
the equality of races, holding that in the Declaration of Independence the white 
man and negro were declared equal, and endowed by divine law with equality. 
And down South, the Old Line Whigs, with the Kentuckians, the Virginians, 
and the Tennesseans, he tells you that there is a physical diiference between 
the races, making the one the superior, the other inferior, and he is in favor 
of maintaining the superiority of the white race over the negro. " 

Those are the Judge's comments. Now, I wish to show you that 
a month, or only lacking three clays of a month, before I made the 
speech at Charleston, which the Judge quotes from, he had himself 
heard me say substantially the same thing. It was in our first meet- 
ing at Ottawa — and I will say a word about where it was, and the at- 
mosphere it was in, after while — but at our first meeting, at Ottawa, I 
read an extract from an old speech of mine, made nearly four years 
ago, not merely to show my sentiments, but to show that my senti- 
ments were long entertained and openly expressed ; in which extract I 
expressly declared that my own feelings would not admit a social and 
political equality between the white and black races, and that even if 
my own feelings would admit of it, I still knew that the public senti- 
ment of the country would not, and that such a thing was an utter 
impossibility, or substantially that. That extract from my old speech 
the reporters, by some sort of accident passed over, and it was not 
reported. I lay no blame upon anybody. I suppose they thought 
that I would hand it over to them, and dropped reporting while I 
was reading it, but afterward went away without getting it from me.^ 
At the end of that quotation from my old speech, which I read at 
Ottawa, I made the comments which were reported at that time, and 
which I will now read, and ask you to notice how very nearly they are 
the same as Judge Douglas says were delivered by me, down in Egypt. 
After reading, I added these words: — 

-^Omits "and inferior." 

^The extract has been printed In full in all subsequent editions of the debates. 



LINCOLN AT QUINCY 399 

" Now, gentlemen, I don't want to read at any greater length; but this is the 
true complexion^ of all I have ever said in regard to the institution of slavery 
or the black race, and this is the whole of it : anything that argues me into his 
idea of perfect social and political equality with the negro, is but a specious 
and 2 fantastical arrangement of words by which a man can prove a horse- 
chestnut to be a chestnut horse. I will say here, while upon this subject, that 
I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of 
slaveiy^^ in the States where it exists. I believe I have no lawful* right to do 
so, and I have no inclination to do so. I have no purpose to introduce politi- 
cal and social equality between the white and black races. There is a physical 
diflference between the two which, in my judgment, will probably forever for- 
bid their living together on the footing of perfect equality ; and inasmuch as it 
becomes a necessity that there must be a difference, I, as well as Judge Doug- 
las, am in favor of the race to which I belong, having the superior position. 
[Cheers; "That's the doctrine. "] I have never said anything to the contrary, 
but I hold that notwithstanding all this, there is no reason in the world whj^ 
the negro is not entitled to all the rights enumerated in the Declaration of 
Independence, — the right of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I hold 
that he is as much entitled to these as the white man. I agree with Judge 
Douglas that he is not my equal in many respects, certainly not in color, per- 
haps not in intellectual and moral endowments; but in the right to eat the 
bread, without the leave of anybody else, which his own hand earns, he is my 
equal, and the equal of Judge Douglas, and the equal of every living ^ man. " 

I have chiefly introduced this for the purpose of meeting the Judge's 
charge that the quotation he took from my Charleston speech was 
what I would say down South among the Kentuckians, the Virginians, 
etc., but would not say in the regions in which was supposed to be more 
of the Abolition element. I now make this comment : That speech 
from which I have now read the quotation, and which is there given 
correctly — perhaps too much so for good taste — was made away up 
North in the Abolition District of this State par excellence, in the 
Lovejoy District, — in the personal presence of Lovejoy, for he was on 
the stand with us when I made® it. It had been made and put in 
print in that region only three days less than a month before the speech 
made at Charleston, the like of which Judge Douglas thinks I would 
not make where there was any abolition element. I only refer to this 
matter to say that I am altogether unconscious of having attempted 
any double-dealing anywhere, that upon one occasion I may say one 
thing, and leave other things unsaid, and vice versa; but that I have 
said anything on one occasion that is inconsistent with what I have 

iReads: "application" for "complexion." 'Omits "lawful." 

2Reads: "species of" for "specious and." sReads: "any other" for "every living." 

aOmits, "of slavery." «Reads: "read" for "made." 



400 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

said elsewhere, I deny, — at least I deny it so far as the intention is 
concerned. I find that I have devoted to this topic a larger portion 
of my time than I had intended. I wished to show, but I will pass it 
upon this occasion, that in the sentiment I have occasionally advanced 
upon the Declaration of Independence, I am entirely borne out by the 
sentiments advanced by our old Whig leader, Henry Clay, and I have 
the book here to show it from; but because I have already occupied 
more time than I intended to do on that topic, I pass over it. 

At Galesburg, I tried to show that by the Dred Scott decision, 
pushed to its legitimate consequences, slavery would be established in 
all the States as well as in the Territories. I did this because, upon a 
former occasion, I had asked Judge Douglas whether, if the Supreme 
Court should make a decision declaring that the States had not the 
power to exclude slavery from their limits, he would adopt and follow 
'that decision as a rule of political action; and because he had not di- 
rectly answered that question, but had merely contented himself with 
sneering at it, I again introduced it, and tried to show that the con- 
clusion that I stated followed inevitably and logically from the propo- 
sition already decided by the court. Judge Douglas had the privilege 
of replying to me at Galesburg, and again he gave me no direct answer 
as to whether he would or would not sustain such a decision if made. 
I give^- him his third chance to say yes or no. He is not obliged to do 
either, — probably he will not do either; [laughter] but I give him the 
third chance. I tried to show then that this result, this conclusion, 
inevitably followed from the point already decided by the court. The 
Judge, in his reply, again sneers at the thought of the court making any 
such decision, and in the course of his remarks upon this subject uses 
the language which I will now read. Speaking of me, the Judge says : 
"He goes on and insists that the Dred Scott decision would carry 
slavery into the Free States, notwithstanding the decision itself says 
the contrary. " And he adds: "Mr. Lincoln knows that there is no 
member of the Supreme Court that holds that doctrine. He knows 
that every one of them in their opinions held the reverse. " 

I especially introduce this subject again, for the purpose of saying 
that I have the Dred Scott decision here, and I will thank Judge Doug- 
las to lay his finger upon the place in the entire opinions of the court 
where any one of them " says the contrary. " It is very hard to affirm 
a negative with entire confidence. I say, however, that I have ex- 

*Reads: "gave" for "give." 



LINCOLN AT QUINCY 401 

amined that decision with a good deal of care, as a lawyer examines a 
decision, and, so far as I have been able to do so, the court has nowhere 
in its opinions said that the States have the power to exclude slavery, 
nor have they used other language substantially that. I also say, so 
far as I can find, not one of the concurring Judges has said that the 
States can exclude slavery, nor said anything that was substantially 
that. The nearest approach that any one of them has made to it, so 
far as I can find, was by Judge Nelson, and the approach he made to it 
was exactly, in substance, the Nebraska bill, — that the States had the 
exclusive power over the question of slavery, so far as they are not 
limited by the Constitution of the United States. I asked the ques- 
tion, therefore, if the non-concurring Judges, McLean or Curtis, had 
asked to get an express declaration that the States could absolutely 
exclude slavery from their limits, what reason have we to believe that 
it would not have been voted down by the majority of the Judges, just 
as Chase's amendment was voted down by Judge Douglas and his 
compeers when it was offered to the Nebraska bill. [Cheers.] 

Also, at Galesburg, I said something in regard to those Springfield 
resolutions that Judge Douglas had attempted to use upon me at Ot- 
tawa, and commented at some length upon the fact that they were, as 
presented, not genuine. Judge Douglas in his reply to me seemed to 
be somewhat exasperated. He said he never would have believed 
that Abraham Lincoln, as he kindly called me, would have attempted 
such a thing as I had attempted upon that occasion; and among other 
expressions which he used toward me, was that I dared to say forgery, 
— that I had dared to say forgery [turning to Judge Douglas.] Yes, 
Judge, I did dare to say forgery. [Loud applause.] But in this poli- 
tical canvass, the Judge ought to remember that I was not the first 
who dared to say forgery. At Jacksonville, Judge Douglas made a 
speech in answer to something said by Judge Trumbull, and at the 
close of what he said upon that subject, he dared to say that Trumbull 
had forged his evidence. He said, too, that he should not concern 
himself with Trumbull any more, but thereafter he should hold Lin- 
coln responsible for the slanders upon him. [Laughter.] When I 
met him at Charleston after that, although I think that I should not 
have noticed the subject if he had not said he would hold me responsi- 
ble for it, I spread out before him the statements of the evidence that 
Judge Trumbull had used, and I asked Judge Douglas, piece by piece 
to put his finger upon one piece of all that evidence that he would say 



402 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

was a forgery! When I went through with each and every piece, 
Judge Douglas did not dai-e then to say that any piece of it was a 
forgery. [Laughter and cries of "Good, good."] So it seems that 
there are some things that Judge Douglas dares to do, and some that 
he dares not to do. [Great applause and laughter.] 

A Voice. — It's the same thing with you. 

Mr. Lincoln. — Yes, sir, it's the same thing with me. I do dare to 
say forgery when it's true, and don't^ dare to say forger}^ when it's 
false. [Thunders of applause. Cries of " Hit him again. Give it to 
him, Lincoln. "] Now I will say here to this audience and to Judge 
Douglas, I have not dared to say he committed a forgery, and I never 
shall until I know it; but I did dare to say — just to suggest to the 
Judge — that a forgery had been committed, which by his own showing 
had been traced to him and two of his friends. [Roars of laughter and 
loud cheers.] I dared to suggest to him that he had expressly prom- 
ised in one of his public speeches to investigate that matter, and I 
dared to suggest to him that there was an implied promise that when 
he investigated it he would make known the result. I dared to sug- 
gest to the Judge that he could not expect to be quite clear of suspicion 
of that fraud, for since the time that promise was made he had been 
with those friends, and had not kept his promise in regard to the in- 
vestigation and the report upon it. [Loud laughter. Cries of " Hit 
him hard; " " Good, good. "] I am not a veiy daring man, [laughter] 
but I dared that much, Judge, and I am not much scared about it 
yet. [Uproarious laughter and applause.] 

When the Judge says he wouldn't have believed of Abraham Lincoln 
that he would have made such an attempt as that, he reminds me of 
the fact that he entered upon this canvass with the purpose to treat 
me courteously. That touched me somewhat. [Great laughter.] It 
set me to thinking. I was aware, when it was first agreed that Judge 
Douglas and I were to have these seven joint discussions, that they 
were the successive acts of a drama, — perhaps I should say, to be 
enacted not merely in the face of audiences like this, but in the face of 
the nation, and to some extent, by my relation to him, and not from 
anything in myself, in the face of the world; and I am anxious that 
they should be conducted with dignity and in the good temper which 
would be befitting the vast audience before which it was conducted. 

^Inserts "I" before "don't." 



LINCOLN AT QUINCY 403 

But when Judge Douglas got home from Washington and made his 
first speech in Chicago, the evening afterward I made some sort of a 
reply to it. His second speech was made at Bloomington, in which he 
commented upon my speech at Chicago, and said that I had used lan- 
guage ingeniously contrived to conceal my intentions, — or words to 
that effect. Xow, I understand that this is an imputation upon my 
veracity and my candor. I do not know what the Judge understood 
by it, but in our first discussion, at Ottawa, he led off b}" charging a 
bargain, somewhat cornipt in its character, upon Trumbull and my- 
self, — that we had entered into a bargain, one of the terms of which 
was that Trumbull was to Abolitiojiize the old Democratic party, and I 
(Lincoln) was to Abolitionize the old Whig party ; I pretending to be as 
good an Old Line Whig as ever. Judge Douglas may not understand 
that he implicated my truthfulness and my honor when he said I was 
doing one thing and pretending another; and I misunderstood him if 
he thought he was treating me in a dignified way, as a man of honor 
and truth, as he now claims he was disposed to treat me. Even after 
that time, at Galesburg, when he brings foi-ward an extract from a 
.speech made at Chicago, and an extract from a speech made at Charles- 
ton, to prove that I was trying to play a double part., — that I was try- 
ing to cheat the public, and get votes upon one set of principles at one 
place, and upon another set of principles at another place, — I do not 
understand but what he impeaches my honor, my veracity, and my 
candor; and because he does this, I do not understand that I am 
bound, if I see a truthful ground for it, to keep my hands off of him. 

As soon as I learned that Judge Douglas was disposed to treat me in 
this way, I signified in one of my speeches that I should be driven to 
draw upon whatever of humble resources I might have, — to adopt a 
new course with him. I was not entirely sure that I should be able to 
hold my own with him, but I at least had the purpose made to do as 
well as I could upon him ; and now I say that I will not be the first to 
cry " hold. " I think it originated with the Judge, and when he quits, 
I probably will. [Roars of laughter.] But I shall not ask any favors 
at all. 

He asks me, or he asks the audience, if I wish to push this matter to 
the point of personal difficulty. I tell him, no. He did not make a 
mistake, in one of his earl}^ speeches, when he called me an " amiable " 
man, though perhaps he did when he called me an " intelligent " man. 
[Laughter.] It really hurts me very much to suppose that I have 



404 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

wronged anybody on earth. I again tell him, no! I very much prefer, 
when this canvass shall be over, however it may result, that we at 
least part without any bitter recollections of personal difficulties. 

The Judge, in his concluding speech at Galesburg, says that I was 
pushing this matter to a personal difficulty, to avoid the responsibil- 
ity for the enormity of my principles. I say to the Judge and this 
audience, now, that I will again state our principles as well as I hastily 
can, in all their enormity, and if the Judge hereafter chooses^ to con- 
fine himself to a war upon these principles, he will probably not find 
me departing from the same course. 2 

We have in this nation this element of domestic slavery. It is a 
matter of absolute certainty that it is a disturbing element. It is the 
opinion of all the great men who have expressed an opinion upon it, 
that it is a dangerous element. We keep up a controversy in regard to 
it. That controversy necessarily springs from difference of opinion; 
and if we can learn exactly, — can reduce to the lowest elements — what 
that difference of opinion is, we perhaps shall be better prepared for 
discussing the different systems of policy that we would propose in 
regard to that disturbing element. I suggest that the difference of 
opinion, reduced to its lowest terms, is no other than the difference 
between the men who think slavery a wrong, and those who do not 
think it wrong. The Republican party think it wrong; we think 
it is a moral, a social, and a political wrong. We think it is a wrong 
not confining itself merely to the persons or the States where it exists, 
but that it is a wrong in its tendency, to say the least, that extends 
itself to the existence of the whole nation. Because we think it wrong, 
we propose a course of policy that shall deal with it as a wrong. We 
deal with it as with any other wrong, in so far as we can prevent its 
growing any larger, and so deal with it that in the run of time there 
may be some promise of an end to it. 

We have a due regard to the actual presence of it amongst us, and 
the difficulties of getting rid of it in any satisfactory way, and all the 
constitutional obligations thrown about it. I suppose that in reference 
both to its actual existence in the nation, and to our constitutional ob- 
ligations, we have no right at all to disturb it in the States where it 
exists, and we profess that we have no more inclination to disturb it 

^Reads: "choose" for "chooses." 
*Reads: "it" for "the same course." 



LINCOLN AT QUINCY 405 

than we have the right to do it. We go further than that; we don't 
propose to disturb it, where, in one instance, we think the Constitution 
would permit us. We think the Constitution would permit us to dis- 
turb it in the District of Columbia. Still, we do not propose to do 
that, unless it should be in terms which I don't suppose the nation is 
very likely soon to agree to, — the terms of making the emancipation 
gradual, and compensating the unwilling owners. Where we suppose 
we have the constitutional right, we restrain ourselves in reference to 
the actual existence of the institution and the difficulties thrown about 
it. We also oppose it as an evil so far as it seeks to spread itself. We 
insist on the policy that shall restrict it to its present limits. We 
don't suppose that in doing this we violate anything due to the actual 
'presence of the institution, or anything due to the constitutional 
guarantees thrown around it. 

We oppose the Dred Scott decision in a certain way, upon which I 
ought perhaps to address you a few words. We do not propose that 
when Dred Scott has been decided to be a slave by that court, we, as 
a mob, will decide him to be free. We do not propose that, when any 
other one, or one thousand, shall be decided by the court to be slaves, 
we will in any violent way disturb the rights of property thus settled : 
but we nevertheless do oppose that decision as a political rule which 
shall be binding on the voter to vote for nobody who thinks it wrong : 
which shall be binding on the members of Congress or the President to 
favor no measure that does not actually concur with the principles of 
that decision. We do not propose to be bound by it as a political rule 
in that way because we think it lays the foundation, not merely of 
enlarging and spreading out what we consider an evil, but it lays the 
foundation for spreading that evil into the States themselves. We 
propose so resisting it as to have it reversed if we can, and a new 
judicial rule established upon this subject. 

I will add this, that if there be any man who does not believe that 
slavery is wrong in the three aspects which I have mentioned, or in any 
one of them, that man is misplaced, and ought to leave us. While, on 
the other hand, if there be any man in the Republican party who is 
impatient over the necessity springing from its actual presence, and is 
impatient of the constitutional guarantees thrown around it, and 
would act in disregard of these, he too is misplaced, standing with us. 
He will find his place somewhere else; for we have a due regard, so far 
as we are capable of understanding them, for dl these things. This, 

—14 



406 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

gentlemen, as well as I can give it, is a plain statement of our principles 
in all their enormity. 

I will say now that there is a sentiment in the country contrary to 
me, — a sentiment which holds that slavery is not wrong, and therefore 
it goes for the^ policy that does not propose dealing with it as a wrong. 
That policy is the Democratic policy, and that sentiment is the Demo- 
cratic sentiment. If there be a doubt in the mind of any one of this 
vast audience that this is really the central idea of the Democratic 
party, in relation to the- subject, I ask him to bear with me while I 
state a few things tending, as I think, to prove that proposition. 

In the first place, the leading man — I think I may do my friend 
Judge Douglas the honor of calling him such — advocating the present 
Democratic policy, never himself says it is wrong. He has the high 
distinction, so far as I know, of never having said slavery is either right 
or w^rong. [Laughter.] Almost everybody else says one or the other, 
but the Judge never does. If there be a man in the Democratic party 
who thinks it is wrong, and yet clings to that party, I suggest to him, 
in the first place, that his leader don't talk as he does, for he never says 
that it is wrong. 

In the second place, I suggest to him that if he will examine the 
policy proposed to be carried forward, he w^ill find that he carefully 
excludes the idea that there is anything wrong in it. If you will ex- 
amine the arguments that are made on^ it, you will find that every one 
carefully excludes the idea that there is anything wrong in slavery. 

Perhaps that Democrat who says he is as much opposed to slavery 
as I am, w^ill tell me that I am wrong about this. I wish him to exam- 
ine his own course in regard to this matter a moment, and then see if 
his opinion will not be changed a little. You say it is wrong ; but don't 
you constantly object to anybody else saying so? Do you not con- 
stantly argue that this is not the right place to oppose it? You say it 
must not be opposed in the Free States, because slavery is not here; it 
must not be opposed in the Slave States, because it is there; it must 
not be opposed in politics, because that will make a fuss; it must not be 
opposed in the pulpit, because it is not religion. [Loud cheers.] Then 
where is the place to oppose it? There is no suitable place to oppose it. 
There is no plan in the country to oppose this evil overspreading the 
continent, which you say yourself is coming. Frank Blair and Gratz 

iOmits "the." aReads: "this" for "the." sReads: "in" for "on." 



DOUGLAS AT QUINCY 407 

Brown tried to get up a system of gradual emancipation in Missouri, 
had an election in August, and got beat, and you, Mr. Democrat, threw 
up your hat, and hallooed " Hurrah for Democracy. " [Enthusiastic 
cheers.] 

So I say, again, that in regard to the arguments that are made, 
when Judge Douglas says he " don't care whether slavery is voted up 
or voted down, " whether he means that as an individual expression of 
sentiment, or only as a sort of statement of his views on national 
policy, it is alike true to say that he can thus argue logically if he don't 
see anything wrong in it ; but he cannot say so logically if he admits 
that slaver}^ is wrong. He cannot say that he would as soon see a 
wrong voted up as voted down. 

When Judge Douglas says that whoever or whatever community 
wants slaves, they have a right to have them, he is perfectly logical, if 
there is nothing wrong in the institution; but if you admit that it is 
wrong, he cannot logically say that anybody has a right to do wrong. 
When he says that slave property and horse and hog property are alike 
to be allowed to go into the Territories, upon the principles of equality, 
he is reasoning truly, if there is no difference between them as prop- 
erty; but if the one is property held rightfully, and the other is wrong, 
then there is no equality between the right and wrong; so that, turn 
it in any way you can, in all the arguments sustaining the Democratic 
policy, and in that policy itself, there is a careful, studied exclusion of 
the idea that there is anything wrong in slaver^'. 

Let us understand this. I am not, just^ here, trying^- to prove that 
we are right, and they are wrong. I have been stating where we and 
they stand, and tr\-ing to show what is the real difference between us; 
and I now say that whenever we can get the question distinctly stated, 
can get all these men who believe that slavery is in some of these 
respects wrong, to stand and act with us in treating it as a wrong, — 
then, and not till then, I think we will in some way come to an end of 
this slaver}' agitation. [Prolonged cheers.] 



Mr. Doug-las's Reply 

Senator Douglas, in taking the stand, was greeted with tremendous 
applause. He said: 

Ladies and Gentlemen: Permit me to say that unless silence is ob- 
served it will be impossible for me to be heard by this immense crowd, 

lOmits "just" and "trying." 



408 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

and my friends can confer no higher favor upon me than by omitting 
all expressions of applause or approbation. ["We cannot help it, 
Douglas, " etc.] I desire to be heard rather than to be applauded. I 
wish to address myself to your reason, your judgment, your sense of 
justice, and not to your passions. 

I regret that Mr. Lincoln should have deemed it proper for him to 
again indulge in gross personalities and base insinuations in regard to 
the Springfield resolutions. It has imposed upon me the necessity of 
using some portion of my time for the purpose of calling your attention 
to the facts of the case, and it will then be for you to say what you 
think of a man who can predicate such a charge upon the circum- 
stances as^ he has in this. I had seen the platform adopted by a 
Republican Congressional Convention held in Aurora, the Second 
Congressional District, in September, 1854, published as purporting to 
be the platform of the Republican party. That platform declared 
that the Republican party was pledged never to admit another Slave 
State into the Union, and also that it was^ pledged to prohibit slavery 
in all the Territories of the United States, not only all that we then had, 
but all that we should thereafter acquire, and to repeal uncondition- 
ally the Fugitive-Slave law, abolish slavery in the District of Columbia, 
and prohibit the slave-trade between the different States. These and 
other articles against slavery were contained in this platform, and 
unanimously adopted by the Republican Congressional Convention in 
that District. I had also seen that the Republican Congressional 
Conventions at Rockford, in the First District, and at Bloomington, 
in the Third, had adopted the same platform that year, nearly word 
for word, and had declared it to be the platform of the Republican 
party. I had noticed that Major Thomas L. Harris, a member of 
Congress from the Springfield district, had referred to that platform 
in a speech in Congress as having been adopted by the first Republican 
State Convention which assembled in Illinois. 

When I had occasion to use the fact in this canvass, I wrote to 
Major Harris to know on what day that Convention was held, and to 
ask him to send me its proceedings. He being sick, Charles H. 
Lanphier answered my letter by sending me the published proceedings 
of the Convention held at Springfield on the 5th of October, 1854, as 
they appeared in the report of the State Register. I read those reso- 

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TKursday n,;s:, .i... Ttli of l.Wolwr. !-<' 
tk« people turn oat. Spcakiii;: "'" '"""' 
""toe* at about half-isist one o'clix ^ 

«os. Akmy Wii,!,uiw.— vTiii* ib'« *'**^ 

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ADVERTISEMENTS IN A PEORIA NEWSPAPER 




DOUGLAS AT QUINCY 409 

lutions from that newspaper the same as any of you would refer back 
and quote any fact from the files of a newspaper which had published 
it. Mr. Lincoln pretends that after I had so quoted those resolutions 
he discovered that they had never been adopted at Springfield. He 
does not deny their adoption by the Republican party at Aurora, at 
Bloomington, and at Rockford, and by nearly all the Republican 
County Conventions in Northern Illinois where his party is in a 
majority, but merely because they were not adopted on the "spot" 
on which I said they were, he chooses to quibble about the place 
rather than meet and discuss the merits of the resolutions themselves. 
I stated when I quoted them that I did so from the State Register. 
I gave my authority. Lincoln believed at the time, as he has since 
admitted, that they had been adopted at Springfield, as published. 
Does he believe now that I did not tell the truth when I quoted those 
resolutions? He knows, in his heart, that I quoted them in good 
faith believing at the time that they had been adopted at Springfield. 
I would consider myself an infamous wretch, if, under such circum- 
stances, I could charge any man with being a party to a trick or a 
fraud. [Great applause.] And I will tell him, too, that it will not 
do to charge a forgerj^ on Charles H. Lanphier or Thomas L. Harris. 
No man on earth, who knows them, and knows Lincoln, would take 
his oath against their word. [Cheers.] There are not two men in 
the State of Illinois who have higher characters for truth, for integrity, 
for moral character, and for elevation of tone, as gentlemen, than Mr. 
Lanphier and Mr. Harris. Any man who attempts to make such 
charges as Mr. Lincoln has indulged in against them, only proclaims 
himself a slanderer. [Vociferous applause.] 

I will now show vou that I stated with entire fairness, as soon as it 
was made known to me, that there was a mistake about the spot where 
the resolutions had been adopted, although their truthfulness, as a 
declaration of the principles of the Republican party, had not been,-*- 
and could not be questioned. I did not wait for Lincoln to point out 
the mistake, but the moment I discovered it, I made a speech, and 
published it to the world, correcting the error. I corrected it myself, 
as a gentleman and an honest man, and as I always feel proud to do 
when I have made a mistake. I wish Mr. Lincoln could show that he 
has acted with equal fairness and truthfulness when I have convinced 
him that he has been mistaken. [" Hit him again, " and cheers.] I will 

iOmits"been." 



410 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

give you an illustration to show you how he acts in a similar case : In a 
speech at Springfield, he charged Chief Justice Taney and his asso- 
ciates, President Pierce, President Buchanan, and myself, with having 
entered into a conspiracy at the time the Nebraska bill was introduced, 
by which the Dred Scott decision was to be made by the Supreme 
Court, in order to carry slavery everywhere under the Constitution. 
I called his attention to the fact that at the time alluded to, to wit, the 
introduction of the Nebraska bill, it was not possible that such a con- 
spiracy could have been entered into, for the reason that the Dred 
Scott case had never been taken before the Supreme Court, and was 
not taken before it for a year after; and I asked him to take back that 
charge. Did he do it? ["No."] I showed him that it was impossible 
that the charge could be true; I proved it by the record; and I then 
called upon him to retract his false charge. What was his answer? 
Instead of coming out like an honest man and doing so, he reiterated 
the charge, and said that if the case had not gone up to the Supreme 
Court from the courts of Missouri at the time he charged that the 
Judges of the Supreme Court entered into the conspiracy, yet, that 
there was an understanding with the Democratic owners of Dred 
Scott that they would take it up. 

I have since asked him who the Democratic owners of Dred Scott 
were, but he could not tell, and why? Because there were no such 
Democratic owners in existance. Dred Scott at the time was owned 
by the Rev. Dr. Chaffee, an Abolition member of Congress, of Spring- 
field, Massachusetts, in right of his wife. He was owned by one of 
Lincoln's friends, and not by Democrats at all. [Immense cheers; 
" Give it to him, " etc.] His case was conducted in court by Abolition 
lawyers, so that both the prosecution and the defense were in the 
hands of the Abolition political friends of Mr. Lincoln. [Renewed 
cheering.] Notwithstanding I thus proved by the record that his 
charge against the Supreme Court was false, instead of taking it back, 
he resorted to another false charge to sustain the infamy of it. [Cheers.] 
He also charged President Buchanan with having been a party to the 
conspiracy. I directed his attention to the fact that the charge could 
not possibly be true, for the reason that at the time specified, Mr. 
Buchanan was not in America but was three thousand miles olT, 
representing the United States at the Court of St. James, and had 
been there for a year previous, and did not return until three years 



DOUGLAS AT QUINCY 411 

afterward. Yet I never could get Mr. Lincoln to take back his false 
charge, although I have called upon him over and over again. He 
refuses to do it, and either remains silent, or resorts to other tricks to 
try and palm his slander off on the country. [Cheers.] Therein you 
will find the difference between Mr. Lincoln and myself. When I 
make^ a mistake, as an honest man I correct it without being asked to 
do so; but when he makes a false charge, he sticks to it, and never 
corrects it. [''Don't spare him," and cheers.] One word more in 
regard to these resolutions; I quoted them at Ottawa merely to ask 
Mr. Lincoln whether he stood on that platform. That was the purpose 
for which I quoted them. I did not think that I had a right to put idle 
questions to him, and I first laid a foundation for my questions by 
showing that the principles which I wished him either to affirm or deny 
had been adopted by some portion of his friends, at least, as their 
creed. Hence I read the resolutions and put the questions to him ; and 
he then refused to answer them. [Laughter; "He was afraid," etc.] 
Subsequently, one week afterward, he did answer a part of them, but 
the others he has not answered up to this day. [" No, and never will," 
" Never can, " and cheers.] My friends, if you are my friends, you will 
be silent, instead of interrupting me by your applause. ["We can't 
help it."] 

Now, let me call your attention for a moment to the answers which 
Mr. Lincoln made at Freeport to the questions which I propounded 
him at Ottawa, based upon the platform adopted by a majority of the 
Abolition counties of the State, which now, as then, supported him. 
In answer to my question whether he indorsed the Black Republican 
principle of "no more slave States," he answered that he was not 
pledged against the admission of any more Slave States, but that he 
would be very sorry if he should ever be placed in a position where he 
would have to vote on the question; that he would rejoice to know 
that no more Slave States would be admitted into the Union. " But,'* 
he added, "if slavery shall be kept out of the Territories during the 
Territorial existence of any one given Territory, and then the people 
shall, having a fair chance and a clear field when they come to adopt 
the constitution, do such an extraordinary thing as to adopt a slave 
constitution, vminfluenced by the actual presence of the institution 
among them, I see no alternative, if we own the country, but to admit 
them into the Union. " 

•'Reads: "made" for "make." 



412 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

The point I wish him to answer is this: Suppose Congress should 
not prohibit slavery in the Territory, and it applied for admission with 
a constitution recognizing slavery, then how would he vote? His 
answer at Freeport does not apply to any Territory in America. I ask 
you, [turning to Lincoln] will you vote to admit Kansas into the Union, 
with just such a constitution as her people want, with slavery or with- 
out, as they shall determine? He will not answer. ["He's afraid," 
and cheers.] I have put that question to him time and time again, 
and have not been able to get an answer out of him. I ask you again, 
Lincoln, will you vote to admit New Mexico, when she has the re- 
quisite population: with such a constitution as her people adopt, 
either recognizing slavery or not, as they shall determine? He will 
not answer. I put the same question to him in reference to Oregon 
and the new States to be carved out of Texas in pursuance of the 
contract between Texas and the United States, and he will not 
answer. 

He will not answer these questions in reference to any Territory now 
in existence, but says that if Congress should prohibit slavery in a 
Territory, and when its people asked for admission as a State, they 
should adopt slavery as one of their institutions, that he supposes he 
would have to let it come in. [Laughter.] I submit to you whether 
that answer of his to my question does not justify me in saying that he 
has a fertile genius in devising language to conceal his thoughts. 
["Good for you;" "Hurrah for Douglas," etc.] I ask you whether 
there is an intelligent man in America who does not believe that that 
answer was made for the purpose of concealing what he intended to 
do. [" No, no, " and cheers.] He wished to make the Old Line Whigs 
believe that he would stand by the Compromise Measures of 1850, 
which declared that the States might come into the Union with slavery 
or without, as they pleased, while Lovejoy and his Abolition allies up 
north explained to the Abolitionists that in taking this ground he 
preached good Abolition doctrine, because his proviso would not 
apply to any territory in America, and therefore there was no chance 
of his being governed by it. It would have been quite easy for him 
to have said that he would let the people of a State do just as they 
pleased, if he desired to convey such an idea. Why did he not do it? 
[" He was afraid to. "] He would not answer my question directly, 
because up north, the Abolition creed declares that there shall be no 



DOUGLAS AT QUINCY 413 

more Slave States, while down south, in Adams County, in Coles, and 
in Sangamon, he and his friends are afraid to advance that doctrine. 
Therefore, he gives an evasive and equivocal answer, to be construed 
one way in the south and another way in the north, which, when 
analyzed, it is apparent is not an answer at all with reference to any 
Territory now in existence. [" Hit him on the woolly side; " " Hurrah 
for Douglas, " etc.] 

Mr. Lincoln complains that in my speech the other day at Galesburg 
I read an extract from a speech delivered by him at Chicago, and then 
another from his speech at Charleston, and compared them, thus show- 
ing the people that he had one set of principles in one part of the State, 
and another in the other part. And how does he answer that charge? 
Why, he quotes from his Charleston speech as I quoted from it, and 
then quotes another extract from a speech which he made at another 
place, which he says is the same as the extract from his speech at 
Charleston; but he does not quote the extract from his Chicago speech, 
upon which I convicted him of double-dealing. [Cheers.] I quoted 
from his Chicago speech to prove that he held one set of principles 
up north among the Abolitionists, and from his Charleston speech to 
prove that he held another set down at Charleston and in southern 
Illinois. In his answer to this charge, he ignores entirely his Chicago 
speech, and merely argues that he said the same thing which he said 
at Charleston at another place. If he did, it follows that he has twice 
instead of once, held one creed in one part of the State, and a different 
creed in another part. [" He can't get out of it, " and cheers.] Up at 
Chicago, in the openmg of the campaign, he reviewed my reception 
speech, and undertook to answer my argument attacking his favorite 
doctrine of negro equality. I had shown that it was a falsification of 
the Declaration of Independence to pretend that that instrument 
applied to and included negroes in the clause declaring that all men 
are^- created equal. What was Lincoln's reply? I will read from his 
Chicago speech and the one which he did not quote, and dare not 
quote, in this part of the State. ["Good," "Hear, hear," etc.] 
He said: — 

"I should like to know, if taking this old Declaration of Independence, 
which declares that all men are equal upon principle, and making exceptions 
to it, where will it stop? If one man says it does not mean a negro, why miiy 
not another man say it does not mean another man ? If that declaration is not 
the truth, let us get the Statute book in which we find it, and tear it out. " 

'Reads: "were" for "are." 



414 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

There you find that Mr. Lincoln told the Abolitionists of Chicago 
that if the Declaration of Independence did not declare that the negro 
was created by the Almighty the equal of the white man, that you 
ought to take that instrument and tear out the clause which says that 
all men were created equal. [" Hurrah for Douglas. "] But let me 
call your attention to another part of the same speech. You know 
that in his Charleston speech, an extract from which he has read, he 
declared that the negro belongs to an inferior race, is physically 
inferior to the white man, and should always be kept in an inferior 
position. I will now read to you what he said at Chicago on that 
point. In concluding his speech at that place he remarked: — 

" My friends, I have detained you about as long as I desire to do, and I have 
only to say, let us discard all this quibbling about this man and the other man, 
this race, and that race, and the other race being inferior, and therefore they 
must be placed in an inferior position, discarding our standard that we have 
left us. Let us discard all these things, and unite as one people throughout 
this land until we shall once more stand up declaring that all men are created 
€qual. " 

Thus you see that when addressing the Chicago Abolitionists he 
declared that all distinctions of race must be discarded and blotted out 
because the negro stood on an equal footing with the white man ; that 
if one man said the Declaration of Independence did not mean a negro 
when it declared all men created equal, that another man would say 
that it did not mean another man; and hence we ought to discard all 
difference between the negro race and all other races, and declare them 
all created equal. Did old Giddings, when he came down among you 
four years ago, preach more radical Abolitionism than this? [" No, 
never."] Did Lovejoy, or Lloyd Garrison, or Wendell Phillips, or 
Fred Douglass ever take higher Abolition grounds than that? Lin- 
coln told you that I had charged him with getting up these personal 
attacks to conceal the enormity of his principles, and then commenced 
talking about something else, omitting to quote this part of his Chicago 
speech which contained the enormity of his principles to which I 
alluded. He knew that I alluded to his negro-equality doctrines 
when I spoke of the enormity of his principles, yet he did not find it 
convenient to answer on that point. Having shown you what he 
said in his Chicago speech in reference to negroes being created equal 
to white men, and about discarding all distinctions between the two 
races, I will again read to you what he said at Charleston: — 



DOUGLAS AT QUINCY 415 

" I will say then, that I am not nor ever have been in favor of bringing about 
in any way, the social and political equality of the white and black races; that 
I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters of the free negroes, or 
jurors, or qualifying them to hold office, or having them to marry with white 
people. I will say in addition, that there is a physical difference between the 
white and black races, which I suppose, will forever forbid the two races living 
together upon terms of social and political equality, and inasmuch as they 
cannot so live, that while they do remain together there must be the position 
of superior and inferior, and- I as much as any other man am in favor of the 
superior position being assigned to the white man. " 

A Voice. — That's the doctrine. 

Mr. Douglas. — Yes, sir, that is good doctrine; but Mr. Lincohi is 
afraid to advocate it in the latitude of Chicago, where he hopes to get 
his votes. [Cheers.] It is good doctrine in the anti-Abohtion coun- 
ties for him, and his Chicago speech is good doctrine in the Abolition 
counties. I assert, on the authority of these two speeches of Mr. 
Lincoln, that he holds one set of principles in the Abolition counties, 
and a different and contradictory set in the other counties. ["That's 
so, " and cheers.] I do not question that he said at Ottawa what he 
quoted; but that only convicts him further, by proving that he has 
twice contradicted himself, instead of once [" Good, " and applause.] 
Let me ask him why he cannot avow his principles the same in the 
north as in the south, — the same in every county, — if he has a con- 
viction that they are just? But I forgot, — he would not be a Repub- 
lican, if his principles would apply alike to every part of the country. 
The party to which he belongs is bounded and limited by geographical 
lines. With their principles, they cannot even cross the Mississippi 
River on your ferry-boats. [Immense applause.] They cannot cross 
over the Ohio into Kentucky. Lincoln himself cannot visit the land 
of his fathers, the scenes of his childhood, the graves of his ancestors, 
and carry his Abolition principles, as he declared them at Chicago, 
with him. ["Hit him again," and cheers.] 

This Republican organization appeals to the North against the 
South; it appeals to Northern passion, Northern prejudice, and North- 
ern ambition, against Southern people. Southern States, and South- 
ern institutions, and its only hope of success is by that appeal. Mr. 
Lincoln goes on to justify himself in making a war upon slavery upon 
the ground that Frank Blair and Gratz Brown did not succeed in their 
warfare upon the institutions in Missouri. [Laughter.] Frank Blair 

■I- Reads: "that" for "and." 



416 ILLINOIS HISTORICAL COLLECTIONS 

was elected to Congress in 1856, from the State of Missouri, as a 
Buchanan Democrat, and he turned Fremonter after the people 
elected him, thus belonging to one party before his election, and 
another afterward. [" Treachery never succeeds. "] What right then 
had he to expect, after having thus cheated his constituency, that they 
would support him at another election? ["None," "Hurrah for 
Douglas," etc.] Mr. Lincoln thinks that it is his duty to preach a 
crusade in the Free States against slavery, because it is a crime, as he 
believes, and ought to be extinguished, and because the people of the 
Slave States will never abolish it. How is he going to abolish it? 
Down in the Southern part of the State he takes the ground openly 
that he will not interfere with slavery where it exists, and says that he 
is not now and never was in favor of interfering with slavery where it 
exists in the States. Well, if he is not in favor of that, how does he 
expect to bring slavery' in a course of ultimate extinction? ["Hit 
him again. "] How can he extinguish it in Kentucky, in Virginia, in 
all the Slave States by his policy, if he will not pursue a policy which 
will interfere with it in the States where it exists? [" That's so. "] 
In his speech at Springfield before the Abolition, or Republican, 
Convention, he declared his hostility to any more Slave States in this 
language : — 

"Under the operation of that policy the 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 Government 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 of slavery will arrest the further 
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 until 
it shall become alike lawful in all the States, — old as well as new, North as well 
as South. " 

Mr. Lincoln there told his Abolition friends that this Government 
could not endure permanently, divided into Free and Slave States as 
our fathers made it, and that it must become all Free or all Slave; 
otherwise, that the Government could not exist. How then does 
Lincoln propose to save the Union, unless by compelling all the States 
to become Free, so that the house shall not be divided against itself? 
He intends making them all free; he will preserve the Union in that 
way; and yet he is not going to interfere with slavery where ^ it now 

^Reads: "anywhere" for "where." 



DOUGLAS AT QUINCY 417 

exists. How is he going to bring it about? Why, he will agitate, he 
will induce the North to agitate, until the South shall be worried out 
and forced to abolish slavery. Let us examine the policy by which 
that is to be done. He first tells you that he would prohibit slavery 
everywhere in the Territories. He would thus confine slavery within 
its present limits. When he thus gets it confined, and surrounded, so 
that it cannot spread, the natural laws of increase will go on until the 
negroes will be so plenty that they cannot live on the soil. He will 
hem them in until starvation seizes them, and by starving them to 
death, he will put slavery in the course of ultimate extinction. If he 
is not going to interfere with slavery in the States, but intends to 
interfere and prohibit it in the Territories, and thus smother slavery 
out, it naturally follows that he can extinguish it only by extinguish- 
ing the negro race; for his policy would drive them to starvation. 
This is the humane and Christian remedy that he proposes for the 
great crime of slavery! 

He tells you that I will not argue the question whether slavery is 
right or wrong. I tell you why I will not do it. I hold that, under the 
Constitution of the United States, each State of this Union has a right 
to do as it pleases on the subject of slavery. In Illinois we have 
exercised that sovereign right by prohibiting slave