i LIBRARY OF CONGRESS. I
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UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
M Q 4yTH Congress, i SENATE. f Mis. Doc.
Isl Session. j \ No. 120.
LIFE AND CHARACTER
THOMAS A. HENDRICKS
(VICE-PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES),
DEI.IVliRK.D IN THE
SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
FORTY-NINTH CONGRESS, FIRST SESSION.
PUBLISHED BY ORDER OF CONGRESS.
G O V E R N M i: N T r r. I N T I N G OFFICE,
JOINT RESOLUTION to print thirty-one thousand copies of the eulogies on Thomas A.
Hendricks, late Vice-President of the United States.
Resolved by the Senate and House of Jiepresenlatives of the United Slates of
America in Congress assembled. That there be printed of the eulogies delivered in
Congress on Thomas A. Hendricks, late Vice-President of the United States, thirty
one thousand copies, of which ten thousand copies shall be for the use of the Senate,
twenty thousand for the use of the House of Representatives, five hundred copies
for the use of the Department of State, and five hundred copies shall be for the use
of Mrs. Eliza E. Hendricks ; and 'the Secretary of the Treasury be, and he is hereby,
directed to have printed a portrait of the said Thomas A. Hendricks to accompany
said eulogies ; and for the purpose of engraving and printing said portrait the sum
of five hundred dollars, or so much thereof as may be necessary, is hereby appro-
priated out of any money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated.
Approved, March 13, 1SS6.
DEATFI OF VICE-PRESIDENT HENDRICKS.
SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.
In the Senate,
Monday^ December 7, 1885.
Rev. E. D. Htjntley, D. D., Chaplain to the Senate, offered
the following prayer:
Let us pray. Almighty God, our Heavenly Father, it be-
hooveth those who would have audience with Thee to come
into Thy presence with reverence and godly fear. So would
we come this morning.
It is remembered by Thy sers'ants here convened that they
represent the interests of a Christian people; and it is fitting
that before engaging in the legislative business of the hour we
should make glad recognition of the high claims of Him with
whom we have to do.
In Thy hands are the issues of national as of individual life,
and it is because of Thy favor that we have been spared and are
yet numbered among the nations of the earth. Thou hast given
4 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
US peace at home and made us at peace with all the world. Thou
hast protected us from "tlie pestilence that walketh in darkness
and the destruction that wasteth at noonday." Thou hast
maintained the high court of this nation in its judicial and its
numerical integrit\-. For these and all Thy providential pres-
erv'ations be pleased, O God, this morning to accept our thanks.
Especially grateful are we for that kind providence that hath
prcser\-ed the life and health of our Chief Executive. Be pleased
to continue Thy defenses round about him. Ma}' he be shielded
from all danger; may he be proof against all evil influences;
and may he be spared to administer the will of the people in
the fear of God.
It is of Th}- mercy that so goodly a number of these Senators
are permitted to occup\- their places here this morning and ad-
dress themselves to the high work for which they have been set
apart. Be with them as by Thy grace they engage again in
the exacting duties of a legislative session.
We grieve that since we last assembled in this room death
has been so specially busy in the ranks of men and has recruited
his grim armies from among the very chiefest of our people.
He has knocked at the House of Representatives, and in recog-
nition of his unwelcome visit the flags upon the Capitol have
fluttered downward, signaling the earth to open and receive the
nation's dead. Once and again has lie demanded the uncon-
ditional surrender of those who had led our armies and who had
ridden in safety through the wild storm of many a battle. But
his summons was not to pass unheeded, and our heroic chief-
tains, laden with death's icy chains, are at last also numbered
among his captives.
He has crowded his way into this Chamber, and at his stern
behest the chief seat in the higher legislative bod\ of the Re-
public has been declared vacant, and its occupant has been
transported to "that undiscovered country from whose bourne
no traveler returns." Encurtained by the shadows of this re-
cent sad bereavement, enable us rightly to estimate the char-
acter and religiously to emulate the many virtues of the distin-
O God, death is Thy ser\'ant, yet while we pray he is pressing
his relentless way toward other of these seats, which must also
soon be hung with somber drapery except Thou do restrain.
Bid him, oh bid him for a time, withdraw his withering gaze
from our chief citizens, that they may recover strength before
they go hence to be no more.
Our petition is before the God of Nations. Answer it, we
pray Thee, according to Thy riches in glory by Christ Jesus our
Mr. VooRHEES. Mr. President, in the discharge of the sad-
dest duty of my public life I beg leave to offer resolutions which
I send to the Chair.
The President /re? /rw/tf;r. The resolutions will be read.
The Chief Clerk read as follows :
Resolved, That the Senate has received with profound sorrow the intelligence of the
death of Thojias A. Hendricks, late Vice-President of the United States, and for a
number of years a distinguished member of this body.
Resolved, That the business of the Senate be suspended in order that the eminent
public services and the private virtues of the deceased may be appropriately commemo-
Resolved, That the Secretary of the Senate be directed to communicate these resolu-
tions to the House of Representatives.
Mr. VoORHEES. I ask that the resolutions lie on the table
subject to be called up at a future day, of which the Senate will
have due and timely notice.
Mr. Harrison. Mr. President, out of respect to the memory
6 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
of the late Vice-President I move that the Senate do now ad-
The President /rt? tempore. The resolutions will lie on the
table. The question is on the motion of the Senator from In-
diana [Mr. Harrison] that the Senate do now adjourn.
The motion was agreed to ; and the Senate adjourned.
In the House of Representatives,
December 7, 1885.
Mr. HoLMAN. Mr. Speaker, the melancholy duty has been
assigned to me of announcing to the House that Thomas A.
Hendricks, Vice-President of the United States, departed this
life at his home in the city of Indianapolis, Ind. , on the 25th
day of last month. The death, after a long period of public
service, of this eminent citizen, holding at the time the second
office in the gift of the Republic, and with a reputation in public
and private life of unsullied purity, has occasioned expressions
of deep-felt grief throughout the whole country. Undoubtedly
Congress, acting through both its Houses, will at an early mo-
ment set apart an occasion for a proper expression touching the
life, character, and public services of the deceased. In view of
this announcement, and out of respect for his memory, I move
that the House do now adjourn.
The motion was unanimously agreed to ; and accordingly the
» proceedings. 7
In the Senate,
Tuesday., January 26, 1886.
The Chaplain, Rev. E. D. Huntley, D. D., offered the
lyct us pray. O Thou whose kingdom is an everlasting king-
dom and whose dominion endureth throughout all generations,
we come to do Thee homage, and would be enrolled among
Thy servants, gladly awaiting Thy commands. We cannot
thank Thee enough for the mercies of the past. We can only
pray that Thou wilt help us to manifest our gratitude by such
a conscientious use of our political endowments as shall con-
tinue unto us Thy guardianship, and thus insure to us and our
posterity honorable place among the nations of the earth.
We are this day to be again reminded of our mortality. The
ordinary legislative business shall be put aside while the career
of our recently-deceased Vice-President is reviewed and the les-
sons of his eventful life are read for the instruction of the na-
tion. Help us to profit by these memorial services, and may we
so number our days as to apply our hearts unto wisdom.
Already our beloved land is the possessor of opportunities
which, under the Divine guidance, have developed characters
whose history the people are unwilling to forget. We seek to
perpetuate their memory by shaft, or sanitarium, or statue; and
while we rejoice that these monumental structures grace our
parks and crown our hill-sides, we pray the Lord to help us
rear above our worthy dead that most honorable and most en-
during of all monuments, a Christian ci\ilization. May it be
concreted with that justice which is the habitation of Thy
throne, that, being structured on the basis which gives stability
to Thy eternal kingdom, the Republic mav abide.
8 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
Hear TIioii our prayer; guide us by unerring wisdom while
we live, and save us in Thy kingdom when we die. For the
Redeemer's sake. Amen.
]\Ir. VooRHRES. Mr. President, pursuant to notice heretofore
given, I move that the Senate proceed to the consideration of
the resolutions now pending before this bod}- touching the death
of the late Vice-President of the United States, and I ask for
The President pro tempore. The Senator from Indiana
moves that the Senate proceed to the consideration of the reso-
lutions mentioned by him. Tlie resolutions will be read.
The Chief Clerk read the following resolutions, submitted by
Mr. Voorhees on the yth of December, 1885:
Resolved, That the Senate has received with profound sorrow Ihe intelligence of the
death of Thomas A. Hendricks, late Vice-President of the United States, and for a
number of years a distinguished member of this body.
Resolved, That the business of the Senate be suspended in order that the eminent
public services and the private virtues of the deceased may be appropriately commemo-
Resolved, That the Secretary of the Senate be directed to communicate these reso-
lutions to the House of Representatives.
The V^V.Si'D^^T pro tempore. The resolutions are now before
DEATH OF THOMAS A., HENDRICKS
-(VICE^PRESIDEXT OF THE UNITED STATES),
DELIVERED IN THE
SENATE OF THE UiNITED STATES
January 26, 1886.
Address of Mr. Voorhees, of Indiana.
Mr. President, for the eminent citizen of the Republic who
lately fell from his high place among living men, and who
sleeps now in peace and honor in the bosom of the State he
loved and ser\'ed, we can do no more than has already been
done by tongne and pen, and by every method which human
affection can inspire. The heavy draper^' of woe has darkened
alike the public building, the stately mansion, and the doorway
of the humble home; the proud colors of the Union have drooped
at half-mast throughout the United States and in all civilized
lands beneath the sun; eloquence in the forum and at the sacred
desk has paid its richest tributes to his exalted abilities and to
his stainless character; the tolling bell, the mournful dirge, the
booming solemn minute-gun, the mighty multitude of mourn-
ers, have all attended the funeral of Thomas A. Hendricks,
and borne witness to the deep love and grief with which he was
lowered into his last earthlv abode. All the honors due to the
lO ADDRESS OF aMR. VOOKHEES, OF E\'DIAXA.
most illustrious dead have been paid by the Chief Magistrate of
the Government, b}' the authority of States, and by the unre-
strained affection of the people.
In tlie Senate, however, we may not be silent even though
the cup of honor to his memory is full and overflowing. In
this exalted theater of action, here on this brilliantly lighted
stage, he fulfilled his last official engagement and closed his long
and commanding public career. When this body adjourned
in April last he went out from these walls to return to them no
more forever. The chair to which he had been called by the
American people was vacant when Senators gathered here again,
and now we briefly halt in our weary march to do honor to
ourselves, and to benefit the living, by pointing out the attractive
virtues of the dead.
Thom.\s a. Hendricks was a native of the Mississippi Val-
ley, born in ]\Iuskingum County, Ohio, on the 7th day of Sep-
tember, 1819. He had the good fortune to be born on a farm,
so often the nurserj- of mental and ph}-sical development and
power. His earliest associations were with people who earned
their bread by the honest labor of their own hands, and the
impressions thus made on his mind were with him always.
They inspirecT his sympathies, and to a great extent governed
his ideas of public duty at every stage of his long official life.
Early in the spring of 1820, when the late Vice-President
was si.x months old, his father, Maj. John Hendricks, with his
young family, moved to the State of Indiana, then indeed an
infant State, but three years older than the strong man-child
then in his mother's arms, and destined to control the gravest
affairs of the Commonwealth and to w-ear her highest civic
laurels. After a brief sojourn at Madison, the well-known
historic residence in the interior of the State at Shelbyville,
Shelby County, was assumed by Major Hendricks, and main-
ADDRESS OF MR. VOORHEES, OF JNDIAKA. \ I
tained with dignity, hospitality, and great practical usefulness
until he slept with his fathers.
In the heart of the dense forest, upon the gentle eminence overlooking the beautiful
valley, he built the sightly and commodious brick house which yet stands in good
preservation in open view of the thriving city and richly cultivated country around.
It soon became known as a center of learning and social delight, and was the favorite
resort of men of distinction and worth. It was in particular the seat of hospitality to
the orthodox ministry, Mr. Hendricks being the principal founder and support of the
Presbyterian church in that community. The presiding genius of that home was the
gentle wife and mother, who tempered the atmosphere of learning and zeal with the
sweet influences of charity and love. Essentially .clever and persistent, she was pos-
sessed of a rare quality of patience, which stood her in better stead than a more aggress-
It was at such a home as this, on one of the outer lines of
advancing civilization, shedding its rays of beneficent Christian
light over the waste places and lighting up the wilderness, that
the future lawyer and statesman began his growth in knowledge,
grace, and power, and rose to the full stature of , his splendid
What a swift unfolding panoramic view of the march of em-
pire and of human progress was given him to behold in his own
lifetime of less than three-score years and ten ! Indiana was
admitted into the Union only sixty-nine years ago with but
thirteen organized counties, 12,112 voters, and a total popula-
tion of 63,897. The first impressions of men and things made
on the mind of Governor Hendricks in his childhood outside
of his own home were of a sparsely settled country, neighbor-
hoods composed of a few families, making here and there an
opening in the wilderness, and separated from each other by long
miles of towering unbroken forests. He was made familiar
with accounts of pioneer privation, self-sacrifice, and heroism.
Indians were still abundant in Indiana, and, though not on the
war-path, were uncomfortable neighbors, and he sometimes
12 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HEXDRICKS.
listened to the hunter with buckskin shirt and unerring rifle
who had fought the red man at Fort Harrison, Tippecanoe, the
River Raisin, and the Thames but a few years before. He knew
at one time what it was to go six miles from home for the priv-
ileges of a very ordinary and uncertain school. The highway
of his early youth was the trail through the woods, from one
settlement to another, surveyed and laid out not with rod and
chain, but with the ax of the frontierman blazing the trees to
give the traveler or the lost wanderer his points of compass and
his way onward. His memory dwelt on the mill by the flowing
stream, where, with primitive methods, the bread of the pioneer
and those beneath his generous roof was provided for.
In after years, when all these things had passed away like a
dream, and when he was decorated with almost even," ofllicial
distinction, he would on rare occasions charm his listeners with
pleasing pictures which had been indelibly painted on his youth-
ful mind. I vividly recall one such instance only a little more
than se\-en years ago. The Millers' National Association met
at Indianapolis in May, iSj.S, and Governor Hendricks was
chosen to welcome them to a public dinner. In the course ot
his remarks, and after dwelling upon the association before him
as one of the most potent factors in the world in providing an
increased amount and an improved quality of food, his mind
reverted to the scenes of his boyhood, and, with the touch of a
master and to the delight of his audience of advanced millers,
he produced from memory the following gem of portrait paint-
As a boy I was acquainted with the miller, and I thought him a great man. When
he raised the gate with such composure and confidence, and the tumbling waters drove
the machinery ahead, I admired his power. And then he talked strongly upon all
questions. He was very positive upon politics, religion, law, and mechanics. Any
one bold enough to dispute a point was very likely to have a personal argument thnrvn
ADDRESS OF MR. VOORHEhS, OF EVDJA.VA. I 3
in his face, for he knew all the gossip among his customers. He was cheerful. I
thought it was because lie was always in the music of the running waters and the whirl-
ing wheels. He was kind and clever, indeed so much so that he would promise the
grists before they could be ready, and so the boys had to go two or three times. He
was a chancellor and prescribed the law, every one in his turn. That miller, standing
in the door of his mill, all white with dust, is a picture even upon the memory of this
generation. It is the picture of a manly figure. I wonder if you gentlemen, the lords
of many runs and bolts, are ashamed to own him as your predecessor. It was a small
mill, sometimes upon a willowy brook and sometimes upon a larger stream, but it stood
upon the ad\'ance line of the settlements. With its one wheel to grind Indian corn and
one for wheat, and in the fall and winter season one day in the week set apart for grind
ing buckwheat, it did the work for the neighborhood.
Plain and unpretentious as compared with your stately structures, yet I would not say
it contributed less toward the development of the country and the permanent establish-
ment of society. So great a favorite was it, and so important to the public welfare, that
the authorities in that day invoked in its favor the highest power of the Slate, that of
eminent domain. That mill and miller had to go before you and yours, and 1 am happy
to revive the memory of the miller at' the custom mill, who with equal care adjusted the
sack upon the horse for the boy to ride on, and his logic in support of his theory in poli-
cies or his dogma in religion.
But while Governor Hendricks would thus at tiiiie.s recall
the early days of Indiana and her small beginnings, on the other
hand his joy and pride, everywhere and under all circumstances,
at her unparalleled progress in every channel of thought and
action were boundless and unrestrained. His enthusiasm over
the development, strength, resources, cultivation, and honor of
the State whose infancy he had shared and to w^hose greatness
he had contributed was of a character not to be fully understood
nor appreciated except by those to whom the nature and attri-
butes of his mind were revealed by long and intimate associa-
tion. Indiana was the one theme, whether in public or private
speech, on which his voice would fill with emotion and his eyes
flash with unwonted fires or grow moist with affection atid grat-
ified pride. He saw her meager population swell to over two
millions, her primitive highways give place to more than six
14 '-IFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
thousand miles of railroad, her farms teeming with more wheat
and corn than any other State of equal size, her coal beds and
manufactories filling the world with their productions and their
fame ; he saw accumulated the largest school fund per capita of
any commonwealth on the globe, and he exulted in the free
schools, the high schools, the normal schools, the seminaries,
the colleges, and the universities which adorn and illuminate
We have heard and read much in our day and generation on
the subject of State pride and the duty a citizen owes to his
State government. Governor Hendricks loved the American
Union, and gave it his warm, unstinted, and unwavering alle-
giance, and held that no duty to his State could interfere with
his duty to the Federal Government. And yet his love for
Indiana, and his pride in her position before the world, was
never less ardent and sincere than that of the most devoted dis-
ciple of that school of State rights which existed before the
war, but which exists now no more. The people of Indiana
well understood this fact, and repaid his afifection with their
own faithful attachment.
But Governor Hendricks had another and earlier reason for
his devotion to the State besides his own connection with her.
affairs. It will be seen from the records of the Territor}' and
of the State that no other name has had so long, so permanent,
and so conspicuous a place in the history of Indiana as that of
his family. When the delegate convention met at Corydon on
the loth of June, 1816, under the authority of the enabling act
of Congress, to frame a constitution for the new State, William
Hendricks was the secretary- of that small but able and historic
body. He was an elder brother of Maj. John Hendricks, and
consequently an uncle of the late Vice-President. He was
large and commanding in person, with marked intellectual
ADDRESS OF MR. VOORHEES, OF INDIANA. ■ \ 5
ability. In August, iSi6, he was elected a member of Con-
gress under the new constitution, and thus became the first
Representative of the State of Indiana at the Federal capital.
In this position he won such distinction that in 1S22 he was
elected governor of the new Commonwealth.
There is nothing more tr^'ing to a young man's reputation
and to his future success than to be charged with the duties of
a frontier State, with all its bitter necessities; its just expecta-
tions, so long deferred as to make the heart sick; its oppressive
burdens, which might be lightened by promptitude and justice
on the part of the Federal Government; its keen and constant
struggles for full recognition as a member of the Union, with
equal rights and dignity in the company of its sister States.
This ordeal was passed, however, so successfully, that in 1S25
William Hendricks was elected a Senator in Congress from In-
diana and re-elected for a second term, giving him twelve years
of service in the Senate of the United States at a most impor-
tant period in the histor>' of the State and nation. A fertile and
wealthy county in the central portion of Indiana bears his hon-
ored name and stands as an enduring monument to the memory
of an able and faithful public servant. In 1837 his public life
closed, and it was but eleven years later when another official
career began which was destined to be longer and more brilliant
and to render the same name still more illustrious. Thomas
A. Hendricks came upon the theater of professional and pub-
lic life better equipped for the duties before him than young
men generally were at that early period in the West. While
his youth had been surrounded by the privations of the frontier,
he experienced but few of them in his own person.
His father was a prosperous man for his day, and, with the
commendable family pride of an intelligent, well-read gentle-
man, he spared no pains or expense in preparing his sons, as far
I 6 LIFE AND CHARACTER OE TUOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
as existing opportunities then permitted, to enter with credit
and success upon the duties of manhood. In the village and
neighborhood schools, and at South Hanover College, Abram,
the eldest son, pursued his studies to become a Presbyterian
minister, and his brother, next younger, laid the foundations of
his future greatness in the councils of men. Governor Hex-
DRICKS was a lover of books, and from his youth up his mind
was fashioned to industry, study, and research. In making;
choice of a profession he followed his earliest inclinations and
eagerly embraced the law. When a mere boy he loved the court-
room, and listened with intense interest and delight to the men-
tal conflicts of strong men. Upon his return from college he
entered at once on his legal studies in the office of Judge Major,
at Shelbyville. He subsequently went to Chambersburg, Pa.,
and further pursued his studies under the tuition of his kins-
man. Judge Thomson. When he was admitted to the bar on
his return home he had a student's well-trained mind, and a
knowledge of the great principles of the common law, which
increased and expanded with his advancing years, and on which
he never relied in vain in the conflicts of after life.
The opening years of his professional career were not marked
by sensational success, but rather by a steady growth in the con-
fidence of the courts and of the people as a diligent, capable,
and rising man. In the meager practice of the village lawyer
great amounts were not at stake, but in the preparation and
trial of small cases the principles of the law laid down by Black-
stone, Chitty, and other great masters of jurisprudence were
often more clearly and ably presented than in controversies in
the highest courts involving millions.
To one imbued with zeal and ambition for legal eminence no
trial in court is unimportant when it presents an issue of law
or of equity. In this spirit and with tliis conception of his pro-
ADDRESS OF MR. VOORHEES, OF INDIANA. \ 7
fession Governor Hendricks pursued his labors from the begin-
ing. In 1848 he was elected to the Legislature ; and at that
point began that double line of duties, one in the courts and
one in the political arena, lasti&g thirty-seven years, and only
closing when his active but weary brain ceased to throb. He
became an eminent leader on both lines of action, and so evenly
and well-balanced were his powers that it would be difficult to
decide on which be was most conspicuous and commanding.
To his own mind and heart, as his intimate friends well know,
his labors and his triumphs in the courts were the dearest and
most satisfactory. The keen, high zest with which he often
enjoyed the conflicts of the bar and their results was something,
when once witnessed, not readily forgotten. If the law, as the
old writers have it, is indeed a jealous mistress, yet she had no
cause to complain of his want of love or devotion, or of his ab-
sence from her chambers, except when driven to other fields of
duty by the highest order that can be issued to a citizen in State
or nation. He lived to realize that his fidelity to his profession
had met its just reward.
The history of Indiana is luminous with the names of able
lawyers and profound jurists from the days of Isaac Blackford
down to the present time; and among the brightest and the
strongest of that great galaxy the name of Thomas A. Hen-
DTiiCKS long since took its permanent place. If to some this
may seem merely the voice of personal friendship, perhaps in-
sensible to careful discrimination and close analysis, I would
recall to them the imposing meeting of his brothers in the law,
held at Indianapolis, and gathered from ever)' part of the State
by the dread summons of his death. Into that Federal court-
room, where he had won and worn many of his brightest laurels,
there came on that sad day the oldest, the ablest, and the most
learned of the Indiana bar. Within its hallowed precincts every
S. Mis. 120 2
1 8 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
thought and recollection of political warfare died away, every
memory- of party strife was hushed, and men of every creed and
faith pressed forward to bear testimony in eloquent and burning
words to their admiration for the great lawj'er, then cold and
motionless forever. Judge Gresham, now of the United States
circuit court, and so long and honorably connected with the
Federal judiciary- and recently with the administration of the
General Government, on assuming the chair by the call of the
We are assembled to pay our tribute of respect to an eminent member of our pro-
fession. Although Mr. Hendricks occupied many high stations in the State and
nation, finally the second highest in the gift of the people, all of which he filled with
distinguished ability, he never lost his fondness for his chosen profession. His triumphs
at the bar were, perhaps, fully as satisfactor)' as his triumphs in the conflicts of politics.
* * * In capacity for rapid absorption of a case, arrangement of facts in their proper
relation, and in the application of principles to facts, Mr. Hendricks greatly excelled.
While he justly stood in the front rank of the profession, perhaps his real sphere was
that of the advocate. In this line he had no superiors, perhaps no equals. As a trial
lawyer he was self-reliant and courageous, and when a case took a sudden and unex-
pected turn, and defeat seemed almost inevitable, he exhibited rare skill and great re-
ser\e power. It was on such occasions that he appeared to the best advantage.
In the memorial prepared and presented by the bar committee
is the following:
Mr. Hendricks was throughout the whole period of his active life a lawyer, even
in hi.", last days concerned in the conduct of causes. His entrance upon and employ-
ments in public life were episodes, excursions, useful to himself and others, but did not
divert him from the beaten path of forensic labor. On the floor of the Senate, in the
halls of legislation, he sojourned — at the bar, in the courts, he dwelt. He was engaged
in very much of the important litigation at the capital of his State. His practice was
by no means local. He attended in the discharge of professional duties nearly every
circuit in our own and many of the higher courts of adjoining States and the Supreme
Court at Washington.
The chairman of that committee, David Turpie, once a dis-
tinguished member of this body, drew the following eloquent
ADDRESS OF MR. VOORJIEES, OF INDIANA.
analysis of the late V^ice-President as a law^'er, all of which
might with equal fidelity to truth be said of himself :
His legal abilities were so various and diversified that it is difficult to say in what
branch of the profession he most excelled; still harder to determine in what, if any, he
As a pleader, that is, in making the statement of a claim or defense upon paper, he
was careful, diligent, exact. * * *
He gave great attention to the preparation of litigated causes for trial. * » »
Rightly deeming that proof, like glass, should be handled with care, and might be
much afTected by the manner of its utterance and the time of its introduction, his verb
"prepare" had a mood, a tense in it often overlooked by others.
He had the capacity to grasp a case, and, having grasped, to hold it in all its details;
before development, from the oath in chief of the jury to their retirement. He seemed,
so to speak, to stand seized of it, per mi et per tout, in entireties ; so that if it failed
upon one hypothesis, it should yet survive and succeed upon another.
Called upon to name in briefest phrase the most prominent trait in his mental char-
acter, aside from fhose splendid qualities which attracted public notice, I should say it
was his power of discernment.
* * * He saw the relation in which one thing stands to another, their corelative
bearings, what these relations would be or might become at any stage, mesne or final, of
And this did not seem to be so much an acquirement or an accomplishment as a fac-
ulty, a faculty of introspection, of prevision, a sort of subsidiary sense or sensibility.
In this he was exceptionally great. It was a quiet power — calm, tranquil, noiseless
in its operation, but strange as wisdom, certain as inspiration, and in its effects unavoid-
able as the decree of fate itself.
His powers of analysis were large, yet fully equaled by those of combination and
construction. His mind in this respect had a dual capacity seldom found in the same
Joseph E. McDonald, so well known and so honored here,
held the following language:
The national flag at half mast, the city draped in mourning, and the many sad faces
that throng our streets, all attest the fact that one who had enshrined himself in the
hearts of the people of this State and had inscribed his name high up in the roll of the
distinguished men of our country had closed his earthly career ; and while we, his
brothers of the bar, have met to pay to his memory that honor to which it is entitled, on
account of the high rank he held in our profession, a nation bows its head in sorrow.
20 LIFE AND CHARACTER OE THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
Monuments may be erected to perpetuate his name, but none wiil be more enduring than
the memorial you will this day enroll upon the records of the courts. It is the lawyers'
monument, and will remain when monuments of brass or stone have crumbled, and
fallen, and mingled with the dust. The memorial and resolutions you are about to
adopt speak of him, his character and career, and render it unnecessary for me to more
than briefly allude to them.
Others in glowing periods and with stately phrase paid tribute
to their departed forensic leader, each one contributing to the
establishment of "the lawyers' monument" in the judicial
records of the country', ' ' which will remain when monuments
of brass or stone have crumbled, and fallen, and mingled with
Turning our attention at this point from his legal to his polit-
ical line of duties, we find a circumstance at the start which
may be taken as the key to his whole career. In 1850 Indiana
had outgrown the methods and the apparel of her childhood,
and stood in need of certain fundamental changes in her organic
law, better adapted to her stalwart and rapidly developing pro-
portions. The legislature authorized a constitutional conven-
tion to be called. To frame the constitution of a State has
always been esteemed the proper work of the fathers and the
elders, of those ripe in years and full of experience. Here and
there exceptions have been wisely made to this general rule, and
the people of Shelby County made such an exception in the
choice of their delegate. Governor Hendricks had put his foot
on the first round in the ladder of his political life when he went
to the legislature in 1848, and now he was called to go higher.
Thus it was at every step of his remarkable history. He
inspired such confidence in every position he held that he not
only never lost an inch of ground once attained, but the con-
stant and confident demand of those who knew him best
throughout his entire career was for his promotion from height
ADDJiESS OF MK. VOORHEES, OF INDIANA. 2 I
to height as long as there was a position of honor and duty
above him. He rose with steady, unfaltering steps, and never
disappointed the expectations of those who gave him their
faith. It mattered not in what situation he was placed, he met
its requirements with ability, with dignity, with courage, and
with clean-hearted and clean-handed integrity. In this one
great fact, shining out like a star over the pathway of his life,
his friends and followers had their abundant pride and joy.
In the constitutional convention, though but thirty-one years
of age, he so bore himself in company, and sometimes in con-
tact, with the oldest and ablest leaders of both political parties
then in the State that in the following year, 1851, he received
his indorsement and promotion by being elected to Congress.
This was followed by a re-election, and then by defeat at the
polls in 1854, that weird, anomalous year in American politics.
Within a few months, however, after his return home to his
law office he was, without solicitation and very unexpectedly,
appointed Commissioner of the General Land Of&ce by Presi-
dent Pierce. His conduct in the House and the discharge of
his duties there had marked him as an able, safe, industrious,
and honest public official. The General Laud Office was then,
as it is now, all things considered, the most important Bureau
in the Government.
The interest of the American people in the public lands
reaches all classes, and the cupidity of land speculators and the
plundering instincts of timber pirates were tempted thirty years
ago in the same way and almost to the same degree as at the
present juncture. Governor Hendricks was slow to accept
the position, and only did so after careful consultation with
friends, and especially with his father, on whose judgment he
greatly relied. His administration of the office proved the wis-
dom of the selection, and he continued to hold it under Mr.
2 2 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
Buchanan until 1S59, when he resigned, returned to Indiana,
and once more resumed his profession at Shelbyville. He had
but little respite. In i860, in the ver>' shadow of the thick-
coming events so soon to follow, he obeyed the call of his party
in convention, and ran a failing race for governor of the State,
weighted down from the start by the ominous collision be-
tween Douglas and Breckinridge. A high promotion, however,
awaited him soon.
The Legislature of Indiana chosen in 1862 elected him a Sen-
ator in Congress, and he took his seat as such on the 4th of
March, 1863. Here, in this the most exalted legislative body
in the world or in the historj' of the world, he gave himself up
for six years, with absolute devotion, to public duty, and estab-
lished that strong and enduring national reputation which ever
afterwards attended him. For vigilant attention to the business
of the Senate, for a knowledge of its principles and its details,
and for earnest, candid labor in its transactions, both in com-
mittee and discussion on this floor, it is doubtful whether any
Senator ever surpassed him. The pages of the Congressional
Globe from day to day attest this fact and are rich with treas-
ures of his thought and eloquence. He was the ever-present
leader of a small minority in this body, and never relaxed his
hold upon the laboring oar.
While the war lasted he favored its earnest prosecution, and
voted for all supplies to sustain the Army. When the war
closed, he held that the States whose people had been in re-
bellion had never been out of the Union, and were consequently
entitled to representation in both branches of Congress and to
the control of their respective State governments. He antago-
nized the doctrine of reconstruction, maintaining that Congress
had no power to reconstruct the governments of States which
had never ceased to be members of the American Union. I re-
REMARKS OF MR. VOORHEES, OF INDIANA. 23
call his position on this great subject not for the purpose of re-
viving even a debatable thought in the minds of Senators, but
to convey some idea of the character and magnitude of his
labors while a member of this body.
In the debates which ensued ever>' principle vital to the
structure and existence of the Government of the United States
as a Republic was involved and its value tested by argument.
Ever)- day, and at times almost ever}- hour, witnessed keen and
strong encounters between such leaders as Fessenden, Grimes,
Sumner, and Trumbull on the one hand, and Hendricks on
the other. He won the respect and esteem of his opponents
here as he did elsewhere. He looked back on his service in the
Senate with pleasure, but with no desire to again enter this
Chamber as a member. He often said he had done a faithful
work, which would never be needed again, to restore a help-
less and broken people to peace and safety and self-control
under the Constitution, and that he was willing the book of
his labors in the Senate should be considered finished, and re-
main as he left it on the 4th of March, 1869.
In the midst of his heavy labors, and the severe mental strain
upon him as a Senator, surrounded by such peculiar circum-
stances, another burden of the first magnitude was imposed upon
his shoulders. In 1868 his party demanded him again as a can-
didate for governor, and while he yielded with reluctance and
with a full appreciation of the odds at that time against him,
yet he entered upon the memorable campaign and conducted
it to the close with an ability, courteous bearing, and perfect
courage never to be forgotten in the history of Indiana. Gen-
eral Grant carried the State by nearly 10,000 majority, while it
will never be absolutely certain whether Governor Hendricks
or Governor Baker, his competitor, received the most votes.
24 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
The count at last decided in favor of Baker by about i,ioo ma-
From March, 1869, when his duties terminated in the Sen-
ate, until the summer of 1872, Governor Hendricks diligently
and with great enjoyment to himself practiced his profession,
being the head of the well-known finn of Hendricks, Hord &
Hendricks, at Indianapolis. But the tenacious devotion of his
party was not willing to leave the close and unsatisfactory re-
sult of 1868 without another appeal to the people on the same
His resistance to the appeals of a unanimous convention for
him to run again for governor in 1872 was extreme, and for a
long time unyielding. When at last borne down by a sense of
duty to a great and devoted part}' he yielded up his own desires
and took the race, he wore a look of patient fortitude and heroic
self-sacrifice, well remembered by those who saw him on that
occasion. In that year of Democratic defeat and disaster, more
or less deserved, when Grant beat Greeley in Indiana over
22,000, Hendricks was elected governor by about i, 200 majority,
all the remainder of the Democratic State ticket being defeated
except the candidate for superintendent of public instruction.
From January, 1873, to January, 1877, a period of four years,
he made a record as governor of Indiana full of honor, useful-
ness to the people, dignity, grace, and refinement. It is with-
out blemish, stain, or fault. There is nothing he could have
wished to change, amend, or,recall; nothing for his most ardent
friends to deplore or to cause them to blush or apologize. The
people of Indiana know him but little, if at all, by any other
title than that of their governor, for in that capacity he was in
their midst, and in personal contact with them more than in
anv other. They knew him best, and it followed that they
loved him most, as Governor Hendricks.
REMARKS OF MR. VOORHEES, OF INDIANA. 25
But in what rapid succession public honors sought him at
everj- stage of his life ! While yet governor of Indiana in 1876,
he was nominated at Saint Louis for the Vice-Presidency, and
I am sure I will not offend the most delicate susceptibility by-
saying that, as in his contest for governor in iS68 so in that of
1876, it will always be a matter of honest doubt in many minds
whether he was defeated by one vote or elected by a consider-
ably majority. When in 18S4 he was in fact elected Vice-
President, but by a ver>' slender majority, it did indeed seem as
if the very genius of close contests and narrow margins in the
ballot had presided over his political fortunes, but that at last
the account was invariably settled in his favor. His victories
were the results of hard-fought and doubtful battles, and his
defeats the same.
Governor Hendricks has been charged with inordinate am-
bition. It is true that he was ambitious for an honorable fame,
but for place and position he cared far less in his own behalf
than his friends did for him. They believed him fit to be Pres-
ident, and they followed his fortunes as his Scotch ancestors fol-
lowed the Bruce, whatever fate awaited tliem. That he would
have made a wise, prudent, and able administration of the
Government as its Chief Magistrate will not be questioned by
those most familiar with his public services and private worth.
In the spirit of accusation and reproach it has been charged,
and more especially in these later days, that he was a partisan
in his political ideas and methods. If by this is meant that he
sincerely believed in the principles and purposes of the party to
which he belonged, and sought by all honorable methods to pro-
mote what he conceived to be the public good by placing its
measures and its men in control of the Government, then the
accusation is true, and the term intended as a reproach becomes
simply. a just tribute to an honest man. If, however, it is in-
26 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
tended to convey the impression that he was ever during all the
years of his political life violent, factious, unreasonable, or pre-
scriptive toward his opponents, whoever or whatever they might
be, nothing could possibly be more erroneous.
There were no neutral tints in his own political colors, but
his tolerance for opposing opinions was so gentle, his manner
of meeting them in discussion so free from bitterness, so spar-
ing of assault, and so full of respect for their candor that preju-
dice melted away in his presence and left his hearers with un-
biased minds to weigh his clear and forcible arguments. It has
been the partisan with deep, honest convictions, dealing justly
with opposing views, who, in all ages of the world and in every
field of human progress, has led the way. Wherever the lists
of free controversy have been opened, wherever conflicts of opin-
ion have determined the thought and action of mankind, there
the well-equipped partisan, his zeal tempered with respect and
magnanimity toward his adversaries, has been a guiding power,
and has engraved his name in letters more durable than brass or
marble on the tablets of history. To this rank of partisanship
may be properly assigned the honored name of him whose death
Much has been said and written, and often without wisdom or
point, on the subject of leadership among men. No man was
ever a leader of his fellow-men in a free country by self-asser-
tion or the spirit of dictation. He who controls the reason, con-
vinces the judgment, enlightens and satisfies the conscience, is
a leader of the people mightier far than he who relies on the
sword. Strong argument, elaborate research, and eloquent
persuasion have been, and will ever continue to be, more po-
tent factors in the world's long annals than the gleaming bayo-
net and the shotted cannon. By their peaceful but powerful
REMARKS OF MR. VOORHEES, OF INDIANA. 2 J
instrumentalities Governor Hendricks won his way to a high
and very commanding political leadership.
In his repeated, long-sustained, and severe contests in Indiana
he always led his followers with consummate judgment, perfect
courage, and a brilliant display of intellectual force. Some-
times on the eve of a political battle he paused and weighed
the issues at stake with such care and prudence that those who
knew but little of the quality of his mind thought he hesitated
to go to the front. Nothing could be more incorrect than such
a conclusion. While others were at times more aggressive, and
more rapid in their decisions at the beginning, yet none led
more boldly, nor further in advance, when the conflict became
fiercest, and when it closed in victory or in defeat.
Governor Hendricks was never so strong, so magnetic, and
so irresistible as when under assaiilt or crowded in discussion
by an able antagonist. In joint debate before the people from
day to day, and from week to week, he has had no superior, and
rarel}' an equal, in the history of the couutr}-. His qualities
for such an ordeal were of the highest order. A self-possession
never for a moment disturbed, a mental concentration no ex-
citement could shake, a memory of facts never losing its grasp,
a will which never faltered, and a courage which rose in the
presence of danger as certainly as the mercury in the tube
under heat, were all his. Added to these gifts and acquirements
was a voice rich, musical, and resonant, pealing forth at his
pleasure like a bugle call to action, or modulated into the soft,
seductive notes of the flute, wooing the affections. A high-
bred, classic face of singular manly beauty, lit up by a winning
and genial expression, a large head with the contour and poise
of an antique model, completed a picture which was never be-
held by an audience without emotions of delight.
Five years ago the unremitting labors and the incessant strain
28 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
of more than the third of a centun,- caused the powerful and
compact physical constitution of Governor Hendricks to put
forth its first signals of distress, and to reel for a time like a
disabled ship in the breakers. In the autumn of 1880, seeking
for rest and surcease of toil, he visited that famous caiion of the
Ozark Mountains, in Arkansas, where magical springs pour
forth their hot and healing waters. While there in repose and
apparent security, the icy finger of paralysis, sure precursor of
skeleton death, touched him with its fatal premonition.
The extent of his danger at that time was never known, ex-
cept to her whose life was as his own, and to his physicians,
who did not conceive it their duty to publish their patient's ail-
ments in the newspapers. He came home, however, to his
beloved State, and again took up his public and private duties
with serenity and composure, but he knew from that time for-
ward that he walked in the constant shadow of an impending
blow. Not a word ever escaped him on the subject outside of
his domestic circle. No wail, nor murmur, nor lament ever
shook his lofty fortitude or passed his lips. When, two years
later, he was stricken with lameness in his foot, and informed
that he could rise no more to take part in the affairs of life, he
was the only party to the scene unmoved by the great change
then apparently so near. He spoke of his work as finished,
and quietly waited for the curtains which divide time from
eternity to be drawn aside. But medical opinion had erred,
and it was reserved for him to receive one more promotion at
the hands of his countrj'men, to be crowned with another and
higher honor, and to fall at last, when his hour did come, within
a single step of the summit of human greatness.
At the Chicago convention in 1884 Governor Hendricks
made the only appearance of his life in such a body. The old
familiar light was in his face, and his mental vision was as clear
REMARKS OF MR. VOORHEES, OF INDIANA. 29
and penetrating as ever, but he was physically not strong, and
the prompt, alert movement and elastic tread which his friends
knew so well were wanting. His presence in that convention
was contagious, and the vast multitude shouted themselves
hoarse and shook the mighty amphitheater with his name
whenever he appeared, but no exultation came for a moment
into his look or manner. To those near him he simply ap-
peared to enjoy in a quiet silent way the popular approval of
his long and faithful services, under the weight of which he was
then wearily walking in the rich and glowing sunset of a great
and well-spent life., When he was nominated for Vice-Presi-
dent he was seeking repose and sleep on his bed at the hotel at
the close of an exciting day. He did not hear the tender words
and strains of Auld Lang Syne break forth from ten thousand
voices at the mention of his name, exclaiming :
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?
The effect of the nomination on Governor Hendricks him-
self was immediate and remarkable. The position of Vice-Presi-
dent was one to which he had never aspired, nor were its duties
congenial to his talents or tastes. He knew and accepted the
fact that a dread specter was hovering near him and liable to
cast its fatal dart at any moment, and more especially in the
midst of labor and excitement. He had so often, however, led
his party, and had always so fully met the expectations of his
devoted friends in Indiana, that his iron will at once determined
not to disappoint them on the last field where he was to appear.
His resolution seemed to summon up all the vigor of the best
years of his manhood.
The energy and activity he displayed were never surpassed
in a political contest. He declared himself ready to answer
for his State, as he did in 1876, and the response of the people
30 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
justified his promise and his claim. The brilliant and gifted
leader of the Republican party, known in the lists of the politi-
cal tournament as the Plumed Knight, crossed the borders of
Indiana, was welcomed with all the pomp and circumstance of
a great party long accustomed to national victories, made a
tour of the State with his banner full high advanced, inspiring
the confidence and kindling into a flame the zeal and devotion
of those who believed in his destiny and followed his star. As
Mr. Blaine closed his engagements in Indiana and drew off to
other fields, it was determined that his dramatic and dazzling
expedition into the West should have its bold and effective
Governor Hendricks, upon brief announcement, passed rap-
idly from point to point, and the people rose up to do him
honor until the whole State seemed one vast continuous assem-
blage. It was his farewell engagement on the hustings, and he
filled it like a master. Such an ovation was rarely ever given
to hero or statesman in ancient or modern times, and the chil-
dren of this generation will recall its scenes when they are old
men and women in the distant future.
But while he moved in the midst of these pageants, honors,
and allurements, it was known to a chosen and silent few that
his mind and heart dwelt apart from them, and were engaged
with matters of higher import than those of earth. During the
last two years of his life he selected and prepared the beautiful
spot where he now reposes. He gave his close personal atten-
tion to the finish and erection of the stately marble shaft which
bears his name and marks his final abode. His only child died
when but three years old, and for more than thirty years had
rested at the old home at Shelbyville.
As he felt the evening shadows coming on, the strong man,
the able lawyer, the distinguished Senator, and governor, and
REMARKS OF MR. VOORIJEES, OF INDIANA. 3 I
Vice-President, wished his long lost little boy to sleep by his
side. He tenderly transferred the sacred dust from Shelbyville,
and when he himself was by loving hands laid to rest, the grave
of a child was obser\-ed close by covered with flowers. At
times he visited this hallowed spot and lingered there while his
own name was ringing with applause or provoking fierce con-
troversy. His thoughts were then far away, and with deep
emotion he gathered up the broken links of the past, and by a
faith that never faltered nor grew dim, reunited them in that
high world beyond the sun and beyond the stars.
Governor Hendricks was a believing and practical Christian
all the days of his life. His duties to the church were no more
neglected nor evaded than his duties to the state. He held
ofl&cial relations with both, but never mingled them. He bore
open and public testimony on all proper occasions to his reliance
upon the teachings of Christianity for the advancement of civ-
ilization and for the happiness of mankind. In his private life
he exemplified the beautiful virtues of his religion. He was
much given to charity, not merely in the bestowal of alms to
the poor, but in the kindness of his heart and the tolerance of
his spirit toward all. He obeyed the apostolic injunction, and
lived in peace with all men as far as it lay in his' power to do
so. He never gave the first blow in a personal controversy,
and often forbore to return those he received. He loved his
neighbors, and was by them beloved.
Sir, we shall see Thomas A. Hendricks no more with our
mortal eyes. He is gone from the high places of earth to the
higher realms of immortality. He is lost to the Senate Cham-
ber, to the forum, and to home and friends. We will follow
him; he will return no more to us. As long, however, as
American history treasures up pure lives and faithful public
services; as long as public and private virtue, stainless and
LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
without blemish, is revered, so long will his name be cherished
by the American people as an example worthy the highest em-
ulation. Monuments of brass and marble will lift their heads
toward heaven in honor of his fame, but a monument more
precious to his memor)- and more valuable to the world has al-
ready been founded in the hearts of the people whom he served
so long, so faithfully, and with such signal ability. In the busy
harv^est time of death, in the year 1885, there was gathered into
eternity no nobler spirit, no higher intelligence, no fairer soul.
Address of Mr. Hampton, of South Carolina.
Mr. President, when death laid his inexorable hand on
Thomas A. Hendricks, Vice-President of the United States,
we had a striking and painful illustration of the truth that
"death loves a shining mark, a signal blow." Eminent alike
for his abilities and his virtues; honored wherever known and
loved best where best known; crowned with almost every civic
honor which a grateful people could bestow; occupying one of
the most exalted positions in our country', and blessed by a do-
mestic happiness perfect as it was beautiful, he did indeed offer
t\ shining mark to the insatiate archer.
One of the great Roman satirists tells us that "pale death
with impartial footsteps knocks alike at the poor man's hut and
the palace of kings," and ever)' page of history teaches the
mournful truth that "the paths of glory lead but to the grave."
How often in the last few months has this solemn lesson been
brought home to our hearts! The last days of summer saw a
countless multitude with bowed and uncovered heads line the
road over which the soldier President of this great Republic
was borne to his last resting place, and the echoes of the funeral
ADDRESS OF MR. HAMPTON, OF SOUTH CAROLINA. 33
marcli that sounded his dirge had scarcely died away when the
body of that other great soldier, General McClellan, was com-
mitted to its mother earth.
Again is the country called oa to mourn the death of another
illustrious citizen, and the Senate of the United States, of which
he had been a distinguished and honored member, over which
as his last public duty he presided with dignity and impartiality,
pauses amid the routine of its daily duties to pay a tribute to
the memory of its late presiding officer, and to give utterance
to the sorrow which fills every patriotic heart in our country for
the death of our honored Vice-President. It is eminently fit and
proper that this should be done, and my only regret in joining
in this tribute is that my contribution to it must necessarily be
so unworthy of him to whose memory it is offered. It would
be difficult for me under the most favorable conditions to say
anything worthy of this theme, and the task has been rendered
impossible since we have listened to the eloquent words just
uttered by the Senator from Indiana. I cannot venture even to
glean in the field reaped so thoroughly by him, and I must con-
tent myself by expressing in a few sincere, heart-felt words the
respect, the esteem, and the admiration felt by our people for Mr.
Hendricks while living and the profound grief caused by his
untimely death. These feelings, I am sure, are not confined to
one section or to one party, but are shared by all classes, wher-
ever honor, integrity, virtue, and piety such as marked the
character of the illustrious dead are respected and venerated.
Asa proofof the truth of this, Mr. President, we need no stronger
evidence than the scene which now meets our view in this Cham-
ber, when members of both parties vie with each other in heart-
felt expressions of esteem for the stainless character, public and
private, of Mr. Hendricks. While this testimonial is honor-
able to those who offer it and deserved by him, to whom it is
S. Mis. 120 3
34 i/j^£ AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
able to those who offer it and deserved by him to whom it is
given, it seems to me that we can draw from it a lesson profit-
able to us all if we heed it. It should teach us to be charitable
in our judgment of those who differ with us. Fortunately in
this case we need not invoke charity in the judgment pro-
nounced on the character of our dead Vice-President, for we
can challenge for it universal respect and admiration ; but should
we not in all cases deal charitably with the living as well as
with the dead? We have been told on Divine authority that
faith, hope, and charity are the cardinal virtues, and the great-
est of these is charity. Not that charity which merely relieves
suffering humanity, but that broader charity which judges len-
iently the motives and actions of men, which tells us to do unto
others as we would have others do unto us — that sublime charity
inculcated by our Saviour. In the friction caused by political
differences and in the heat of party strife we too often indulge in
a bitterness toward our opponents as unjust as it is uncharitable.
Motives are impugned, actions misrepresented, facts distorted,
and character assailed in this partisan warfare. And yet when
one of the great actors in the political arena falls all animosities
are buried with him, and in the awful presence of Death friends
and foes alike strive to do justice to his merits and to pay hom-
age to his memory. Recognizing this fact, which does honor
to human nature, can we not agree to disagree without malice?
Can we not believe that men may be honest and conscientious
even though they differ with us? In a word, can we not be
charitable in our judgment of our fellow-men?
Human nature is but clay
Truly blessed by charity.
These reflections have naturally suggested themselves to m}-
mind by the scene presented here to-day and by others of a simi-
lar character which have so often of late transpired in this
ADDRESS OF MR. HAMPTON, OF SOUTH CAROLINA. 35
Chamber. Time and again, during my brief service here, have
I seen these mournful ceremonies re-enacted, and on each have
members of opposing parties, clasping hands over the grave of
a colleague, paid willing homage to his virtues, while the mantle
of charity was thrown over his faults. These scenes, which
prove the brotherhood of mankind, and show that "one touch
of nature makes the whole world kin, ' ' have left a deep impres-
sion on my mind, and that impression was indelibly fixed by
the extraordinary spectacle presented at the funeral of General
Grant. We all remember the imposing and touching ceremo-
nies of that mournful occasion, and certainly no one who wit-
nessed them can ever forget them. But the feature that struck
me as the most significant, the most impressive, was the fact
that among those who bore the body of the great captain of the
Union Army to the grave were confederate soldiers, who a few
brief years ago were his mortal enemies.
Democrats and Republicans, men who wore the blue and
those who wore the gray, met at his tomb to pay the last tribute
of respect to his memory. Here to-day we, while honoring our-
selves by doing honor to the memory of our late Vice-President,
see exhibited the same kind and generous feelings which marked
the obsequies of the dead ex- President. If then our political
and personal animosities cease at the grave, should we not be
tolerant, considerate, and charitable in the judgment we pass
on our contemporaries, even though they be our political oppo-
nents? All of us, sooner or later, must claim from the living
that tender recognition which we now bestow on the dead. For
Like muffled drums, are beating
Funeral marches to the grave ;
and to that bourn we are hastening with steady and rapid steps.
Fortunate indeed shall we be if when we reach that bourn we
36 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
may be able to meet the Great Judge with a conscience void of
offense toward God and man, as was his whose loss the country
He, dying, leaveth as the sum of him
A life-count closed, whose ills are dead and quit;
Whose good is quick and mighty, far and near,
So that fruits follow it.
No need hath such to live, as ye name life;
That which began in him, when he began.
Is finished ; he has wrought the purpose through
Of what did make him, man.
He has indeed left a life-count closed, without one blot or
stain to mar its fair page, and in every relation of life he proved
himself, in the highest and best sense, a man. Firm and sin-
cere in his convictions ; true to his friends ; liberal toward his
opponents ; conscientious in the discharge of every duty ; a
patriot and a Christian, he surely deserved and doubtless has
received that highest reward that can be bestowed on mortal
or angel, the final decree of the Judge of all living, "Well done,
thou good and faithful servant. " It is one of the inconsistencies,
perhaps rather one of the infirmities, of human nature that in
spite of all the blessed assurances of Christianity we grieve when
those who are near or dear to us are taken away by death. We
know that to those who are prepared to die death is but the
gloomy portal through which they pass to the realms of eternal
happiness, and this conviction should teach us that all grief for
them is selfish ; but neither philosophy nor religion can soothe
the anguish which wrings our hearts when a dear friend or a
beloved relative is borne to the grave.
The blood will follow where the knife is driven ;
The flesh will quiver where the pincers tear.
Thus, when the good are called home, to enter on the true
life beyond the grave, we grieve, not for them, but for ourselves.
AVDKESS OF MR. SHERMAN, OF OHIO. 3 7
It is well with them ; they have exchanged the sorrows, the
sufferings, of this world for the glories of heaven ; a daily death
for life eternal. There is a beautiful thought expressed by one
of our oldest poets which seems to me peculiarly appropriate
when a good man, ripe in years and rich in honors, passes away
Speaking of our misuse of language, he says :
We call here life * * * «
Angels who live and know what 'tis to be,
Who all the nonsense of our language see;
Who speak things, and our words, their ill-drawn pictures scora.
When we, by a foolish figure say,
"Behold an old man dead!" then Ihey
Speak properly and cry, " Behold a man-child born 1 "
Address of Mr. Sherman, of Ohio.
Mr President, in pausing a while in our public duties to pay
our tributes to the memory of a conspicuous actor in the scenes
that have transpired in this Chamber during this generation, we
naturally leave to the Senators from Indiana the more formal
statements of the principal events of his life and of the qualities
of heart and mind that endeared him to the people of the State
in which he lived and secured him the preference and support
of a broader constituency for the second executive office of the
All that we who have been co-workers with him in the pub-
lic service can do is to add our gleanings to their store by a
frank but kindly and charitable view of the part he took in our
presence in the common duties of public life, and, better still as
evidence of character, the part he took in private life as a citi-
zen, an associate, and in all the relations of domestic life.
My first acquaintance with Mr. Hendricks was when he was
Commissioner of Public Lands during part of the administra
38 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
tions of Presidents Pierce and Buchanan. In the discharge of
the duties of this important ofEce he was brought into contact
chiefly with citizens of the Western States, whose titles are de-
rived directly from the United States. His administration of
this ofiice is admitted to be without fault, for he was careful,
patient, and industrious, and thus laid the foundation of his
popularity in vast regions, the fruits of which he was to reap in
after years. No one was more familiar than he with the history
and laws of the new States and Territories that have been rap-
idly developed from the vast public domain extending from the
Ohio to the Pacific Ocean. He voluntarily retired from this
position in 1859 to resume the practice of law, which appears
always to have been his favorite occupation. In March, 1863,
he took his seat as a member of this body. For six years he was
by far the most active and influential Senator of his political
party, always taking the lead in directing and expounding the
policy of his associates on the innumerable questions that grew
out of the conduct of the war or that sprang from the results of
the war. No period of American history has presented ques-
tions of equal difficulty or importance, for they involved not
merely old divisions of domestic policy for which the Constitu-
tion furnished a guide, but also very many problems that the
framers of the Constitution did not provide for and did not con-
ceive could arise. Itwas during this period of Mr. Hendricks's
life that he established the influence over his party which he
never lost. Though rarely agreeing with him, I bear willing
testimony to the marked ability with which he maintained his
opinions. Always plausible in argument and courteous in de-
bate, ready in resources and never violent in manner or state-
ment, he satisfied his friends and did not irritate his adversaries.
His speeches were evidently carefully prepared, but rarely read
when delivered; his argument was clear and his language copi-
ADDRESS OF MR. SHERMAN, OF OHIO. 30
ous, rarely pausing for a word or phrase, but moving smoothly
on like a full river. If his premises were admitted it was difE-
cult to resist his conclusions, and the weak points of his posi-
tion were carefully guarded by plausible arguments.
The reconstruction of the Southern States was, perhaps, the
most frequent subject of his speeches, and upon this he early
took the position that as a question of law the events of war
did not and could not disturb the relation of the State to
the Federal Union; that its existence as a State, its organiza-
tion as a State, its constitution continued all the way through
the war, "and when peace came it found the State with its con-
stitution and its laws unrepealed and in full force, holding that
State to the Federal Union. ' ' He, therefore, opposed every bill
containing a safeguard deemed by others necessary as a condi-
tion precedent to the restoration of the State to the Union, and
every amendment to the Constitution of the United States pro-
posed as a condition precedent to the full exercise of the powers
of a State. Unlike his distinguished colleague. Governor Mor-
ton, who shared with him during a part of his term the honor
of representing Indiana in this body. Senator Hendricks ad-
hered to and maintained in many famous debates his opinion
as to the right of States lately in rebellion to unconditional res-
toration when the war was over.
The heat of the contest is now over, and we may calmly look
back upon the past contentions as founded upon honest differ-
ences of opinion and fairly weigh the merits of the great actors
in the battles of war or debate, and especially so when one by
one they disappear from the living and join the great army of
the dead. Viewed from this standpoint, we must acknowledge
that Vice-President Hendricks in his public life was a learned
lawyer, studious, diligent, and successful ; a trusted and honored
governor of his State, always retaining the affection and respect
40 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
of those who knew him best; a faithful and honest ofEcer in a
position of high trust in an executive branch of the National
Government; a member of each house of Congress of unques-
tioned ability and integrity, faithful to his convictions as tested
by the principles which he openly avowed and ably defended,
and by these tests true to his party and countr}', and as such
was rewarded by the people of the United States with the second
office in their gift.
If we turn from his public life and view him as a man, in
all the varied relations of life, we can pronounce his eulogy
without the qualification of opposing opinions. That he was
honorable and just in all business affairs" has not been ques-
tioned. He was easy of approach, affable and kind, carrying
into his private life none of the bitterness of political strife.
He was a man of good habits and temperate, plain, of unblem-
ished character, the best type of an American citizen. He was a
lover of order, peace, and, if not a member of a religious society,
he respected and observed the obligations of religion and mo-
rality, and, more important than all else in human society, he
was faithful to his duty to his kindred and family, and left us
an example of purity and honor in private life. It is these
virtues, far more than genius, learning, or intellectual force,
that make our late presiding officer worthy of the high praise
this day bestowed upon him by his surviving associates in the
Address of Mr. Saulsbury, of Delaware.
Mr. President, the announcement of the death of Governor
Hendricks was received with sincere expressions of regret
throughout the country.
For more than a quarter of a centur>' he had been known as
ADDRESS OF MR. SAULSBURY, OF DELAWARE. 41
a statesman of enlarged views and commanding influence and
was held in high esteem not only by those who knew him per-
sonally, but also by a much larger number who knew him only
from the reputation earned by a long life of eminent public
It is proper that recognition should be made of distinguished
worth and merit in the lives of public men and that due honors
should be paid to their memories after they have passed away.
It is perhaps the universal desire of the living to be remembered
by those who survive and succeed them — a desire springing
from no inordinate self-esteem, but innately implanted in the
human breast as an incentive to honorable and useful lives
It would be impossible to estimate the influence of this laud-
able ambition upon human action or measure its value upon the
happiness and well-being of society, but it may be affirmed that
it has inspired the hopes and shaped the lives of many of the
most illustrious and distinguished men both of ancient and
The commemoration of the characters of deceased public men,
who by their labors and talents have attained tc acknowledged
distinction, is not only a just tribute to their memories, but an
inducement to the living to emulate their virtues and imitate
their examples of usefulness and honor. There have been but
few public men who commanded more respect or whose mem-
ories will be held in higher regard by the people of the country
than Governor Hendricks, and it is especially appropriate that
the Senate should give expression to the respect entertained for
the memory of one who so lately presided over its deliberations.
Such expression is due not only on account of the high ofiicial
position which he held at the time of his death and his con-
sequent connection with this body, but also because of the emi-
42 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
nent ability and fidelity displayed in every position, State and
Federal, he was called upon to fill.
His private virtues and the record of his public life as gov-
ernor of Indiana, as Representative in Congress, and as Senator
from his State, have been eloquently presented in the addresses
to which we have listened. Such a life, so free from reproach, so
faithful to every trust, needs no encomium. The simple record
of its "living action" is the proper measure of its usefulness
and its highest and most appropriate eulogy.
Governor Hendricks was endowed by nature with fine intel-
lectual powers, which were developed and strengthened by a
culture and discipline that enabled him to comprehend more
readily and accurately the various questions which demanded
his attention both in public and private life. His conclusions
were not mere impressions derived from intuitive perception,
but were the result of careful investigation and reason. Hence
he was cautious in the expression of opinions until they had
been clearly and definitely formulated in his own mind by de-
liberate thought and reflection. This fact gave great weight to
his opinions upon all questions upon which they were expressed,
and inspired a reliance upon his judgment on the part of others
which was seldom found to have been misplaced.
His studious habits in early life and careful attention to the
business intrusted to his care, prompted by a laudable ambition
for success in his profession and distinction among men, soon
attracted attention and brought him into notice in his own State.
He entered public life in the prime of manhood, and retained
until the day of his death the unabated confidence of those
among whom he lived, and indeed I may say of a ver>' large
portion of the people of the whole country.
Governor Hendricks was not unknown when he entered this
Chamber as a Senator from Indiana, having served in the other
ADDRESS OF MR. SAULSBURY, OF DELAWARE. 43
House of Congress and filled an important position in an Exec-
utive Department of tlie Government during the administration
of President Pierce. His service in the Senate brought him
still more prominently before the country and furnished the op-
portunity for establishing that national reputation for ability
and statesmanship which has since been accorded to him.
He took his seat in this body at a time when free discussion
was somewhat restrained by a spirit of intolerance throughout
the country and which was at times manifested in this Cham-
ber, usually so indulgent to honest differences of opinion. He
entered promptly, however, into the debates of the Senate, and
was often compelled to antagonize with earnestness measures
which he deemed unwise and pernicious, displaying an ability
whicli gained the admiration of friends and commanded the re-
spect of those whose views and measures he was compelled to
The services rendered by Governor Hendricks while in offi-
cial station by no means measure the value of his life either to
his State or the country. For many years he had held a place
in public estimation that enabled him to impress his views upon
the country and to no small extent influence the opinions and
actions of others upon important public questions.
It is not necessarily the case that those in official position
exert the greatest influence in the determination of public mat-
ters or render the most important service to the country'. In
a republican government like our own a well-defined public
opinion upon subjects requiring legislative or administrative
action must sooner or later be heeded and obeyed. It may, for
a time, be disregarded and even contemned and despised, but it
will ultimately assert its power and find the means of compel-
ling obedience to its behests. He, therefore, who enjoys such
a measure of public confidence as enables him to direct to any
44 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
considerable extent public thought and opinion will, although
in private life, have no small share in the control of public
One thing is certain : Governor Hendricks while a private
citizen (if at any time for many years he could be regarded as
such) suffered no diminution in the esteem of his countrymen
or in the weight and influence of his opinion upon their judg-
ment and action. He had for a long time been recognized as
one of the ablest and most trusted leaders of the Democratic
party of his State and of the country, and to the wisdom of his
counsels and his great personal popularity as its candidate for
the Vice-Presidenc}^ is that part}' largely indebted for its present
control of the executive branch of the Government.
It would not be proper on this occasion to occupy the time
requisite to speak of all the elements that entered into and made
up the symmetrical character of Governor Hendricks. I may,
however, be allowed to refer to the respect he entertained and
manifested for the sentiments and wishes of the body of the
people. No station, however exalted, could sever the tie of
sympathy which united him to them or render him indifferent
to their judgment or forgetful of their interests. This was no
assumed virtue, but a tribute paid by a heart instinctively in
harmony with the popular thought and feeling to the honesty
and practical good sense of the masses of mankind. There is
reason to believe that too many public men underv^alue the
average intelligence of those they represent and do not pay that
deference to their judgment to which it is entitled. Governor
Hendricks was not of the class of men who seek to magnify
their own importance by refusing recognition of merit in others,
but had learned from personal contact to place a proper estimate
upon the honesty of the people and a proper respect for the
deliberate judgments they had formed. His appreciation of his
ADDRESS OF MR. SAULSBURY, OF DELAWARE. 45
fellow-citizens was reciprocated on their part by the attachment
which neither success nor defeat could interrupt or diminish.
For some reason, which it might be difficult to explain, there
seems to be less recognition of distinguished service and worth
in civil life than is awarded to merit in another sphere. In this
and perhaps in every other country the highest value is placed
upon the services of successful military men and the highest
honors paid to their memories after they are dead. It is meet
and proper that full and just acknowledgment of gratitude should
be made to those who have risked their lives in defense of their
country's rights and honor. Is there any reason why equal
recognition should not be made of valuable and distinguished
services in civil life, and equal honors perpetuate the memories
of statesmen who have served their country with no less fidelity
and zeal for its honor and welfare?
Washington and his companions in arms who fought the bat-
tles of the Revolution and achieved the independence of the
Colonies will be gratefully remembered while patriotism inspires
the human heart or history records the great events of time.
But who will say that Washington and his army in the field
were more patriotic or rendered more valuable service to the
American people than Washington, Hamilton, Jefferson, Mad-
ison, and their compatriots in council, who formulated and es-
tablished our republican system of government and secured to
our posterity the blessings of civil and religious liberty?
Thiers concludes his History of the Consulate and Empire of
Napoleon by a brief review of the career of Alexander, Han-
nibal, and Caesar as compared with that of the emperor. With
the achievements of these great captains he contrasts the life
and labors of Charlemagne, who in the ninth century threw off
the barbarisiH in which he was bom and by which he was sur-
rounded and peacefully united the alienated portions of his
46 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
country, brought order out of confusion, established schools for
the instruction of his people, and elevated them from barbarism
to a fair deoree of enlightenment and civilization.
I shall attempt no comparison between the eminent soldiers
and statesmen of our own country. Their fields of labor and
usefulness have lain in different directions, and both have done
well in the spheres in which they have been called to act. Both
have assisted in the maintenance of free institutions in the land
and will fill honored pages in their countr>''s history. It may,
however, be affirmed, without injustice to any, that constitu-
tional government and individual rights in this as well as every
other countr>' will find their surest protection in the wisdom and
patriotism of the men who make and execute the laws.
There have not been wanting at any time since the adoption
of the Constitution able and fearless statesmen to uphold and
defend the full measure of liberty which it was intended to se-
cure to the American people. May we not indulge the hope
that the future history of the country shall witness no abatement
in the devotion of her public men to the free institutions which
are the birthright and should ever be the heritage of her citi-
The past is safe. Whatever may be the destiny of the Re-
public, its centur>' of histor}- has been marked by unparalleled
advancement ' in material wealth and prosperity and a greater
degree of freedom and happiness to its citizens than was ever
before vouchsafed to any portion of the human race.
The perpetuation of constitutional government and the lib-
erty which it secures, by maintaining the checks and balances
imposed ujdou the co-ordinate departments of the Government,
and while upholding in full force and vigor the just powers of
Federal authority, opposing with manly firmness every at-
tempted encroachment upon the liberties of the people and the
ADDRESS OF MR. EVARTS, OF NEIV YORK. 47
reserved rights of the States, is the obligation resting upon
American statesmen in every period of the countr}''s history.
In the discharge of that duty Governor Hendricks, in his
day and generation, performed well his part, and has left to pos-
terity the results of a useful life, a spotless record, and an hon-
Address of Mr. Evarts, of New York.
When, Mr. President, in the arrangements by which the Sen-
ate should so properly offer the tribute of its respect and affec-
tion in memor)' of one whose loss they deplore, it was thought
right to include myself among those who should participate in
the presentation of the feelings of the Senate, it would seem,
perhaps, that no other relations would have suggested the pro-
priety of this selection except as an observer of the distinguished
career of a member of an opposite party and a citizen of a dis-
But it so happens that I had a very considerable acquaintance
with Mr. Hendricks, dating to quite an early period in his
public career. When in attendance upon the Supreme Court,
many years ago, I first formed his personal acquaintance; and
then, at an age when probably he was not far advanced beyond
that of middle life, as it is construed, he was pointed out to me
as a person of interest, and who should engage my attention,
as one who, in the career upon which he had entered, and from
the progress which he had made in it, was, naturally and proba-
bly, a future candidate for, and successful aspirant to, the
Presidency of the United States. However strange it seemed
to me that so early in a man's career so great prognostics could
be safely or wisely made of him, from that time onward there
has never been an occasion in which I have been brought into
48 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
relations with Mi. Hundricks that it did not recall to my
mind that sentiment and that expectation respecting him.
About twenty years ago, too, it came in my way, in the prac-
tice of my profession, to represent great interests in an important
lawsuit in the city of Cincinnati, in which was arrayed against
us a numerous body of the important and powerful members
of our profession in that great State, so full of excellent lawyers.
The aid also of Governor Hendricks, from his neighboring
State, was called in by our opponents. I had then an opportu-
nity not only of forming myself an opinion of his abilities and
his force as a lawyer, but also of perceiving the impression
he made upon the public about him, on the profession of the
two States, and on their judiciary. From all this a lawyer
might fairly form during the period of the trial, which lasted a
fortnight, an estimate, and a correct estimate, of the power and
value of another. As I recall the matter, Mr. Hendricks was
regarded upon tlie other side as the leader in that array, and
upon our side was felt as the most formidable and the most
But on a later scene of much greater import I also had an
opportunity to estimate the character, the eloquence, the intelli-
gence, the courage of Mr. Hendricks, and the value of his con-
stitutional opinions. I mean on the great occasion of the im-
peachment of the President. In this Chamber, as I recall the
trial, the division between parties was such that thirty-five rep-
resented the full Senate of the Republicans and but twelve
Democratic Senators were present to counterbalance in any
form or any degree this superiority of numbers. During the
three months of that great debate, and in the course of the de-
livery of opinions, so fully made up by the contributions from
the Senators on the Republican side and the few who could
participate on the part of the Democratic party, it may be easily
ADDRESS OF MR. EVARTS, OF NEW YORK. 49
understood that Mr. Hendricks (who then, I think, it must
be admitted, held the lead of that small band of Democrats who
then occupied seats in the Senate) was relied on on that side
of the Chamber for his wisdom, for his courage, for his ability
as a lawyer, for his learning and experience in constitutional
matters of debate.
I think now, as I thought then, that among the eminent men
who took part in the preparation and delivery of opinions, and
those who took part in the debates, not infrequent, of an inter-
locutory nature, no man appeared better in his composure of
spirit, in his calmness of judgment, in the circumspect and care-
ful deliberation with which, avoiding extreme extravagances,
he drew the line which should mark out fidelity to the Consti-
tution, as distinguished from addiction to the supremacy of
party interests and party passions.
Of course, during that period the proprieties of my position
did not permit personal intercourse with Senators upon either
side; but during the many days, the many hours of each day,
that this great transaction passed before my ej'es, and recalling
them now, it seems to me that there was no position, there was
no argument, there was no purpose and no plan in the conduct
of that debate, as represented by Mr. Hendricks, that was not
in accordance with the whole duty of a Senator performing a
grave part in one of the greatest political transactions that any
free government has had or shall have occasion to witness.
Mr. President, it is just twenty-five years ago that, in the
last days of this same month of January, a Senator from Mis-
sissippi bade, as he expressed it in his own phrase, a final adieu
to the Senate, in obedience to his obligations to his State. As
we in memory recall the perilous experiments upon the Consti-
tution, upon the Government, upon the power of this nation, that
were practiced by and during the civil war, and as we now find
S. Mis. 120 4
50 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
that tliis Chamber is full — every State represented in its full com-
petency under the Constitution, this alley dividing, in scarcely
unequal strength, the two parties — as we witness the reciprocal
respect and kindness between the members of the two great par-
ties represented on this floor, we cannot but feel that not from
the foundation of this Government to the present time, nor un-
der the ancient governments who count in their parliamentary-
duration hundreds of years, will you find a nearer approach in
personal kindness and mutual respect between opposite parties
than now mark the sentiments. and the conduct toward each
other of these two political parties. Yet, as I have said, but
twenty-five years have elapsed between that opening event
that I have adverted to and this present scene of common respect
over the bier of the deceased Vice-President.
Sir Robert Peel once said, on a fitting occasion, to Lord
Brougham, that "the contact of party produces a warmth of
feeling toward those who sit around us ; but the eye is a cold
and jealous scrutinizer of those who are opposite to us. ' ' What-
ever distrust should qualify, therefore, on this side of the Sen-
ate, our estimate of the leader of an opposing party conducting
his career while the country was under the stress of its threat-
ened division, and its restoration was attended by the aggrava-
tions and solicitudes that marked its progress to our present
firm security, I think I may be allowed to say that looking at
those who are opposite to us — that looking at the whole matter
and running over the principal occurrences and the principal
relations of Mr. Hendricks to them, this Republican party
would have at all times felt that he was fairly entitled from his
own party — in their opinions, in their affections, in their sup-
port — to the highest places that their suffrages should be able to
offer to him.
Something has been said about his being a partisan. I know
ADDRESS OF MR. EVARTS, OF NEW YORK.
by no instruction of my observation, nor by anything that I can
draw from history, any other mode of conducting the debates of
a great and free people except by means of great and firm par-
ties. I believe, therefore, that steadfast and intrepid adhesion
to a party is a merit, and I believe that political contests fail
much of their service to the country^ when steadfast and intrepid
adherence to political leaders is neglected on the part of the
mass of a party.
Whatever be the debates in human affairs that best illustrate
the contests of party under a free government, whether they are
best likened to the litigations of the profession before the courts
or to battles between combatants upon the scenes and perils of
war, I believe that it is equally essential to the ser\'ice in all
these forms that there should be neither betrayal nor desertion
on the one side, nor timidity or hesitation on the other part.
Undoubtedly, irretrievably for the time, the issues involved
may be lost where these disparaging elements of a manly con-
test shall intervene, but nevertheless such inconclusive and
spurious determinations tend to inflame the unassuaged animos-
ities and provoke a renewal of the old hostilities.
I may say then, Mr. President, that my estimate of the late
Vice-President is that of an eminent lawyer. Certainly his
eloquence was persuasive and eflfective. Certainly his method
of forensic address was quite admirably free of all superfluity.
If it be truly said, as I believe it is truly said, that the greatest
trait in the greatest of orators, notwithstanding all the splendor
of his eloquence, Demosthenes, was that, more than all other
orators, he was distinguished by the fact of the absolute direct-
ness with which every movement in his conduct of the debate
was governed, that no superfluous word was used, none taken
for ornament but always for effect, we must, at least in our pro-
52 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
fession, consider these traits that I have ascribed to the forensic
eloquence of Mr. Hendricks worthy of admiration.
As a statesman, if he has been more usually looked at in
the aspect to which I have referred, as a great political leader,
it will be found, I think, that he was always governed by inborn
convictions, and that he was directed, in the particular situa-
tions, by inbred opinions. I do not find in his career any of
that versatility of opinion for the nonce or of alliance to this
or that particular movement that was to affect for the present
time only. He was always of that sentiment which he ascribed
to the prevailing sentiment of the Democratic party, and if it
might be unhappy for him, as it was unhappy for all of us, that
there should have been such a severe and peremptory discrim-
ination in the antagonisms between the two parties from the
gravity and the stress of the affairs of the nation, nevertheless I
take it it must be said that he is entitled to the credit of having
been a consistent, an intelligent, a prudent, a patient, and a
courageous statesman in the service of the Democratic party,
which he had espoused and to which he unflinchingly adhered.
Mr. President, these ceremonies and these eulogies in the
presence of the dead are never formal and never commonplace.
However frequently brought to the notice of mortals, death is
never formal and never commonplace. However men may lead
their lives, in the market-place, in the courts, in the vSeiiate, at
the head of armies, in the crowds of popular applause, a man
must always die alone. Whether death shall approach us in
the form of a sudden summons, a tragic fate, or by slow prog-
ress, sensibly to ourselves, visibly to those around us, the ej-e
shall grow dim and the natural force abate, death is a fearful
visitor. Whether his intrusion overtakes one in the towers of
kings or in the cabins of the poor, the supreme event, wherein
this mortal puts on immortality, swallows up all incidents and
ADDRESS OF MR. RANSOM, OF NORTH CAROLINA'. 53
circumstances as trivial and impertinent. From these contem-
plations, Mr. President, whether in the close chamber of the
dying or on the wide scene of public bereavement and national
lamentation, the wisest may learn new wisdom and the boldest
feel the mastery of an invincible antagonist.
Address of Mr. Ransom, of North Carolina.
Mr. President, it was with no ordinary emotion that I re-
ceived the request of the distinguished Senator from Indiana to
unite in rendering these solemn honors to the late Vice-Presi-
dent. When I thought of the profound sorrow with which
North Carolina was stricken at the death of Mr. Hendricks,
and the sincere regard which her people in their hearts had for
years cherished for his character, I knew that I could not ade-
quately express their deep sympathy in the supreme bereave-
ment of Indiana, nor their grief at the great loss which the
whole country had sustained.
It is no common tie that binds together the people of these
two States. The sons and daughters of North Carolina were
among the earliest settlers of Indiana, and of all the States of the
mighty West Indiana still presents the most attractive homes to
the emigrants from North Carolina. There is scarcely a fireside
in that beautiful State around which, I am told, some hallowed
North Carolina association does not linger, and but few family
circles in whose veins the blood of North Carolina fathers or
mothers does not flow. Nor will North Carolina soon forget
that the distinguished subject of these ser\dces, recognizing the
claims which her Revolutionary patriots had to the gratitude
of mankind, left his home across the Ohio and came to Char-
lotte, in that State, to unite with her people on the 20th of May,
1875, in commemorating the one hundredth anniversary of the
LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
immortal day on which the "Men of Mecklenburg" proclaimed
the "first declaration of independence" in America.
Mr. President, the duty of rendering appropriate and truth-
ful testimony to the life and services of Indiana's great son has
been so well performed by his distinguished friend, the Senator
from that State, that nothing can add force or luster to the pre-
sentment which he has made. That presentment is now en-
rolled in the Senate, and I must say here, sir, that it will take
its place among the best monuments of either ancient or modem
times that friendship and affection, aided by learning and elo-
quence, have erected to those who deserved them. If, sir, all
record of the life and services of the late Vice-President should
be obliterated, his name would be preserved for long ages in
that precious casket in which the genius and the devotion of his
friend has enshrined his memory. The V:ce-President was fort-
unate in his biographer ; the generous Senator was fortunate
in his subject. I can but repeat the feeblest echoes of that grand
tribute from a friend to a friend.
It is almost impossible to estimate the value to mankind of a
great and good life. Custom and experience have assigned
prices to most of the treasures of the world, but no effort of the
mind has been able to measure and determine the worth of a
great character. No comprehensible limits can be affixed to'
the extent, the continuance, the diversity, and the power of its
influences for good. Like the sun giving perpetual heat and
light to the material universe, a great and good man is a source
of intelligence and beneficence to the whole human family
through all time. Nor do the trifling spots upon the sun nor
the similar imperfections of the man sensibly diminish the
splendor or the usefulness of either.
It is in the contemplation of a very distinguished life and
character that we are now engaged. We, Mr. President, arc too
ADDRESS OF MR. RANSOM, OF NORTH CAROLINA. 55
near Mr. Hendricks to write his history. Time is the essential
element of just histor}', and to that tribunal must be referred
the final judgment of all the -actions of men. The late Vice-
President is still almost one of us ; his very image is before us
as he sat in the chair which you occupy and presided o%cr the
Senate. We can almost behold him now — his form, his face,
his every action ; his very words seem to linger with their soft
tones on our ears ; his shadow has barely passed the doors of the
Senate Chamber. The excitement of one of the greatest polit-
ical contests in history in which he was a leader has not sub-
sided in our bosoms. We are not his best judges ; but this we
all do know of him ; it is in letters of living light before our
eyes : Here was a man who for forty-three jears was conspicu-
ously before the public gaze ; first as a lawyer in the courts of
justice, that surest ordeal to test character ; then successively
in the legislature of his State, the convention that framed the
State constitution, in the House of Representatives of the United
States, in a high position in an Executive Department of the
Government, in the Senate of the United States, governor of his
State, and Vice-President of the United States. He was twice
nominated for Vice-President, and for sixteen years, from 1868
to 1884, was the choice of his State and a large proportion of
his party for President.
For two generations of men, two ages, he was in the public
service, constantly passing through the fires of adverse criticism,
standing in the front battle-lines of party conflict, not only in
peace but through war, not only in the councils of his State and
the forums of the Union, but in the chief magistracy of his Com-
monwealth and in the Vice- Presidency of the United States, and
there was not one blot or stain or shadow upon his robes. There
was not a spot in his armor which had not received and re-
pelled the spear of an adversary. In the high temples of justice
56 I-IFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
and at the more sacred altars of home he was the same unsullied
Search the annals of public men for centuries past and you
will find but few parallels to this career. As we contemplate
the series of these remarkable facts of his life, this long line of
successes, these ever-ascending steps up the temple of fame to
its very summit, this circle of unbroken confidence, beginning at
his home, embracing a county, extending throughout a district,
expanding over a State, widening, enlarging over a country of
fifty millions of people, and still deepening at the center where
it began, we shall know that all this was not the result of for-
tune or art or adventitious circumstance, but that the grand
superstructure of his life was laid in deep and solid foundations,
and reared in harmonious and enduring proportions.
Nothing, sir, but great intellectual ability, high moral excel-
lence, invariable devotion to duty, and unwavering faith in the
rectitude of his purposes could have achieved and maintained
such results. The law of such a life must have been a con-
stant aspiration for what was higher and better. It is a difii-
cnlt undertaking to deceive continually one human being; it is
simply an impossibility to impose for years on millions of
people. From the incredulity, jealousy, suspicion, and scru-
tiu}' of such a host of watchers all the artifices of the subtlest
political magician could not hide every trace of corruption or
It would require, Mr. President, the genius of a Macaulay to
analyze and delineate the qualities and traits that constituted
the strength and grace of Mr. Hendricks's character. It will
be an interesting and instructive study to the young statesmen
of our country. They will find in it a model which it will be
well to respect and difficult to improve. What was the mys-
tery of his ever-increasing and enduring strength wtth the peo-
ADDRESS OF MR. RANSOM, OF NORTH CAROLINA. 57
pie? Why was there no shipwreck to his sails? Why was
there no eclipse of that luminary? What made him the first
man in the popular confidence of his State, and second to no
man in the esteem of the American people? What carried him
safely and triumphantly through all the vicissitudes of a long,
eventful, and trying public life? It was not military glory, for
he was never a soldier. It was not eloquence, for he was not,
like Webster, an orator in the highest sense of the word. It
was not charm of manner, for, though gracious and pleasant,
he had not cultivated, like Chesterfield, the arts of grace as a
means to an end. He originated no great popular measures, like
Chatham and Clay. He never, like Crassus, possessed large
wealth with which to win popular favor.
The whole truth is, sir, that he was the earnest, faithful, de-
voted champion and defender of the people's rights.
The sincerity of his devotion was the charm of his success.
He was prudent, sagacious, laborious, wise. He consulted the
people's interest just as he would have consulted his own in-
terest. He never undertook to mislead, to deceive, or to in-
flame them. He never trifled with their liberties, their prop-
erty, or their honor. He never attempted to dazzle them with
false and glittering hopes, or to madden their prejudices and
precipitate them into desperate perils. He was a brave, cau-
tious, vigilant pilot, never departing from his chart or neglect-
ing his compass. His positions were thoughtfully taken, se-
curely fortified, and boldly defended. He was never surprised
or deluded. He was misled by no false lights. He was so
thoroughly prepared and equipped by labor, study, and attain-
ment that he was always ready for and equal to the occasion.
He was a sentinel who never left the post of duty.
He was not like noble Hector, towering over all the Trojans,
but betrayed by proud hopes into fatal indiscretion.
58 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
He was not, like Achilles, superior alike to Greeks and Tro-
jans, but cursed with passions stronger than himself and driven
by mad revenge from the field of honor and duty to his sullen
tents. But he was like Diomede and Ulysses, those pillars of
the cause of Greece, ever sagacious, faithful, and prepared.
I/ike them, he bore reverses with dignity and composure, and
was equally modest and reserved in victory. Like them, he
was "equal to either fortune." He loved law and order and
abhorred chaos. Like Socrates, he obeyed if he did not respect
the law, and, like that greatest of Athenian patriots, would with
his last breath have sacrificed to the law, as to the majesty of
his country, even if it destroyed himself He was never eccen-
tric or meteoric or convulsive; and though he never shone with
the magnitude and intense splendor of Aldebaran, he yet con-
stantly exhibited the virtue and energy of the paler and serener
star whose truth never varies. If he was not a Moses leading
his people from Egyptian darkness through the wilderness,
striking water from the rock and invoking bread from the skies,
he was the ever-faithful Joshua, "strong and very courageous,
observing all the law as it was commanded unto him, and turn-
ing not from it to the right or to the left, and prospering where-
soever he went. ' '
He did not stand among men like some majestic mountain
with its proud head in the clouds wrapt in snow, an object of
wonder and astonishment to all who behold it, but his life re-
sembled the beautiful plain beneath, studded with cities, villages,
and happy homes, refreshed by cooling streams, abounding in
fruitful fields, and bearing on its bosom the comforts and the
blessings of men. He was always practical, useful, and efl!icient.
He seems to me to have taken color and character from that
great line of English statesmen who for eight hundred years
have steadily maintained and advanced the growth of liberty
ADDRESS OF MR. RANSOM, OF NORTH CAROLINA. 59
and law, and wisely avoided the convulsions and upheavals and
collapses of the neighboring nations. His life and character
were complete and rounded as a circle, and resemble the writ-
ings of Addison, of which it may be truly said that they are so
simple, so pure, so strong, so full of grace, and so free from
grossness, so clear with light, and so consistent with reason,
that nothing can be added to them without marring their
beauty and nothing can be detracted from them without im-
pairing their force.
As I\Ir. Hendricks had been fortunate in life, so was he
happy in the time and manner of his death. While yet in the
full maturity and undiminished vigor of his faculties, with not
one ray of his remarkable intelligence obscured or dimmed,
honored among all men, in the declining year, in the beautiful
autumn, before hoary winter has laid his icy hand upon the
bosom of nature, at that ripe season when the yellow fields are
rendering up all their richest harvests, at his own home, in the
bosom of those whom he loved and who loved him, he passed
without a pang from this world, with hallowed accents on his
lips of the reality of that perfect "freedom" which is the aspi-
ration of good men everywhere. How beautiful is the sunset
of autumn when twilight gently lingers between day and night,
and the glory of the sun does not retire until the curtain is
softly lifted and the glory of the stars appears. Fitting crown
to the life of a Christian statesman in a Government whose
vital fire is religious liberty.
And, sir, to me, I must say, speaking from my heart, that the
death of Mr. Hendricks and of the other illustrious men of our
country which immediatel}' preceded it were fortunate in illus-
trating the great, supreme, blessed truth that we are again all
one people, united together in affection to each other in a com-
mon and devoted love to our whole country, its ] iberties and
6o LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
honor. From all the Southern States come up sincere, deep,
overflowing sympathy and sorrow at the bereavement of their
Northern sisters. Our tears mingle with yours over the graves
of your great dead, your countrymen and our countrymen.
Thank Almighty God that the ' ' everlasting covenant ' ' of our
Union is established in the hearts of all our people, and that in
the clouds of this sorrow we can behold the bow of peace never
to be broken.
Address of Mr. SPOONER, of "Wisconsin.
Mr. President, I do not affect to believe that I can worthily
add to the eloquent and impressive eulogies which have been
pronounced in the hearing of the Senate, but I desire neverthe-
less to speak a word of tribute to the memory of Mr. Hen-
dricks. On the day he became Vice-President I came a
stranger into the Senate, and as I stood before him to take from
his lips the oath of ofhce, he gave to me, as a native of Indiana
and the son of one whom in years long gone he had known in
professional life, a warm and friendly greeting, and later, during
the executive session, he supplemented that greeting by cour-
tesy so considerate and kindly, that I have felt in his death
something of the sense of personal loss.
The occasion on which I remember last to have seen him in.
the discharge of official duty in this Chamber I shall never
forget. Standing in his place there, with ill-concealed emotion,
and in tones which were low and trembling, he invited our at-
tention to a dispatch just received, and there came to us from
the Secretary's desk the words (happily then not quite true),
"General Grant is dying," which hushed every sound here,
bowed every head, and made the Senate in its sorrow that after-
noon a representative body of all the people. How little we
ADDRESS OF MR. SPOONER, OF WISCONSIN. 6 1
thought that before the autumn should have come and gone the
familiar face then before us would fade forever from the sight
The appropriate details of Mr. Hendricks's life, public, pro-
fessional, and private, have been eloquently traced by the Sena-
tor from his State, his personal and political friend.
Mr. Hendricks belonged to a school in politics to which the
associations and convictions of my life have brought me into
bitter hostility, and of course I cannot speak in approval of his
attitude upon the great questions of the past, upon which the
people of the country divided on party and sectional lines. To
one or two phases of his career and belief I may, however,
He was a man of strong convictions, and he had little respect
for those who were otherwise. He was in no sense or way a
trimmer in politics, although the contrary has been asserted
of him. No public man ever lived to whom the favor and ap-
proval of the masses were sweeter than they were to Mr. Hen-
dricks. Few public men ever lived whose course evoked bit-
terer criticism from opponents than did his at times. The fact
that he preferred to stem the tide of popular sentiment rather
than to walk the easy, open way to popular favor is at least con-
clusive of the strength of his convictions.
It had not long before his death become fashionable in some
quarters to speak of him as a "spoilsman." If by this was
meant that he desired the bestowal of office as a mere reward
for party service upon unfit men or in violation of existing law,
I believe, from conversation with him upon the subject, that
the accusation was utterly groundless.
Mr. Hendricks was heart and soul a Democrat. He
thoroughly believed in his party and in its principles. Indeed,
I think if he might give direction to our words to-day he would
62 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
bid us say of him that he was a partisan Democrat. He rightly
thought that politics should be a matter of conviction, and that
every man of firm political faith owed it to himself and to the
country- to be a partisan, in this, at least, that he should labor
earnestly, and in all fit ways best suited to his mental make-up
and to his surroundings, to promote the success of the princi-
ples in which he believed. To him no political partisanship,
honorable in its methods, was offensive. He fully realized the
value of organization. He knew that no great charity even
could be administered without it, and that the command laid
upon the apostles, "Go \'e into all the world and preach the
gospel to every creature," cannot be efficiently obeyed without
organized effort and partisan service. He recognized the plain
necessity for party organization, and in the party he saw only the
instrumentality through which, and through which alone,
might be wrought out the triumph of his principles.
In active, faithful, honorable party ser\nce he saw, therefore,
devotion to principle, not mere lust for office. He believed that
the party clothed by the popular will with the responsibility of
administration should everywhere intrust the execution of its
policies to those who were in political sympath}' with it and
who had at heart its continued and completest success. He be-
lieved that those of the ruling party who had done the most
and sacrificed the most in honorable active party effort should,
if fit for public duty, be by that party everywhere first called
to public ser\dce. Steadfastness in faith he thought reasonably
entitled to the honor of such recognition. He saw it thus in law,
in medicine, in science, in business, in education, and in every
other department of mental and pjiysical effort, and he could
not embrace a new philosophy which in politics alone denied it
He had a tender feeling in his heart for the men who for
ADDRESS OF MR. SPOOXER, OF WlSCONShX. 63
twenty-four years, in sunshine and in storm, had led his party
again and again to certain defeat, who had kept alive its organ-
ization in every State and county and town, and who had, by
unwavering allegiance and effort, made possible its ultimate
success; and he could not brook, with any degree of patience,
the suggestion, in the hour of his party's triumph, that such
men should be reproachfully termed "politicians" and denied
recognition lest some -political "esthete" should say, "it is a
reward for party service. ' '
The imputation that he was a ' ' spoilsman ' ' rather angered
than it grieved him, for he knew it came from those who had
either been of a hostile camp, or, if of his own, had been wont
to linger in the shade and slumber while he and the "boys," as
he loved sometimes to call the party workers, had borne the
heat and dust and burden of the battle.
Spoilsman or not, he went down to his grave loved, trusted,
and mourned by his party, and I dare to believe that the ele-
ment of party fealty which brought to him this reproach will
not cause his memory to suffer with the great mass of his op-
The private life of Mr. Hexdricijs was stainless, and the
record of his public service is without a venal blot. In the
fierce heat of party warfare in which he was a leader, in the
bitter condemnation which at times his course invited, no man
has ever dared to couple with the name of Hendricks the sus-
picion of corruption.
As a public ofBcer, he was faithful to every detail of duty.
He took great pride in his administration of the General Land
OfBce many years ago, and frequently referred to it. He brought
to the discharge of that duty peculiar fitness, and ordained rules
and methods of procedure there to the wisdom of which each
year since intervening has brought gratifying vindication.
64 LIF£ ^^D CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
To the ability and industry and attentiveness with which he
discharged the Senatorial duty the records of the Senate bear
permanent and abundant testimony.
As a lawyer, he won, deserved, and sustained a national rep-
utation for learning and professional skill. His brethren of the
bar and the judges before whom he practiced bear concurrent
testimony to his singular excellence as an advocate. As alert
to discover and attack the weak points in the armor of his ad-
versary as he was to recognize and protect the weak points in
his own, he gave hard blows and took them with unruffled
temper. When success crowned his efforts as a lawyer he was
modest and considerate, and when the standard which he had
borne went down in defeat he was patient and serene. What-
ever the fortunes of the professional contest, he never grumbled
at the court or anathematized the jury.
As an orator, he was persuasive and attractive. There was
a quality in his voice and a charm in his manner which gave
him command of his audience.
He was a genial, gracious, kindly gentleman, who treated
all who came within the circle of his influence, rich or poor,
exalted or lowly, with th? same rare and exquisite courtesy.
To him life's sun has set. For him life's cares are ended.
He is, in the words borne upon his dying breath, " free at last. "
There is, Mr. President, a melancholy comfort in the manner
of his death. He died as one might wish to die who was as
well prepared to die. In his own home, in the midst of the
friends and neighbors of many years, at the capital of the State
which loved him and which he loved, in the tender care of her
who was nearest and dearest, without premonition or pain of
parting, "God's finger touched him, and he slept."
ADDRESS OF MR. I'EST, OF MISSOURI. 6s
Address of Mr. Vest, of Missouri.
Mr. President, the best and bravest knight in all the Demo-
cratic liost has gone down before that relentless foe against
whose assault courage and skill are alike unavailing.
To others I shall leave the recital of his public career, illus-
trated by great and patriotic service, State and national. To
me it is a melancholy pleasure to think and speak of his char-
acter and attributes as I knew them in the arena where we first
met, and where I learned to follow him as a leader and love
him as a friend.
Thomas A. Hendricks was the incarnation of the vital
principle in our Government, the sovereignty of the people.
He knew the people and was nearer their hearts than any living
He was the noblest type of American manhood, self-reliant
and self-made, incorruptible in public life and pure in private
conduct. To the poor and humble he was always accessible,
listening patiently and never refusing sympathy and aid. Stern
and uncompromising as an adversary, he was just and courteous
to the bitterest opponent, and when the conflict ended gentle,
kind, and loving as a woman.
He was a partisan in the highest and best meaning of the
term, devoted to his party because he believed it necessar}' to
the welfare and glory of his country. So believing, he fought
for party as for country, and there was not a rivet in his armor
that had not been tried by edge of sword and point of spear.
Cool, wary, undaunted, he led every forlorn hope, and around
his banner ebbed and ilowed the headlong fight.
He was an honest partisan, and had no respect for that polit-
ical aestheticisni which cannot distinguish friend from foe. He
S. Mis. 120 5
66 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
believed the aims of party should be high, ennobling, patriotic,
and that the instrumentalities and agencies to attain these aims
must necessarily be friendly, not inimical.
Asking and giving no quarter, he did not sprinkle rosewater
over the enemies of his party, or give sweetmeats to the polit-
ical wolves and tigers ready to spring at its throat.
He died suddenly, as falls a chieftain on some stricken field;
and it was well. Better one pang, one throb, than weeks ot
pain and slow decay. Better to fall like the struck eagle,
whose full-stretched wing droops in mid-heaven above the
■ mountain-top, than to writhe through weary days and sleepless
nights waiting "the inevitable hour."
Pure in life, prepared for death, his career rounded and com-
plete, our great leader, crowned with the love and respect ot
his countrymen, and breathing with his latest words the name
of one dearer to him than all else, passed into that shadowy
realm where his expectant spirit awaits her coming.
Address of Mr. Harrison, of Indiana.
Mr. President, the principal incidents in the public career oi
Mr. Hendricks have been so fully and eloquently depicted by
those who have preceded me as to make it not only unnecessary
but even inappropriate that I should attempt- anything like a
biographical sketch of the distinguished dead. A brief allusion
to some of the incidents of our long acquaintance and to some
of his personal and professional traits, as I observed them, must
constitute my tribute to his memory. His political career was
a long and conspicuous one. He had a very strong and endear-
ing hold upon a wide and widening circle of political friends.
It can not be safely said that his popularity had culminated at
the time of his death, for we cannot read the future. But it
ADDRESS OF MR. HARRISON, OF INDIANA. Q,J
can safely be said that it had not waned. He seemed never to
have been more loved and admired by his political friends than
upon that day when death's sudden message separated him from
The fact that he maintained so long, as well in reverse as in
success, the clear leadership of his party in the State of Indiana —
that in its extreme needs it always called for him — is convincing
proof that he possessed in a high degree those qualities of miud
and disposition that attract the love of men and inspire hope and
confidence. He was not aggressive as a leader, but always met
an assault with vigor and courage. He was shrewd, prudent,
and quiet, rather than rash or boisterovis in his methods. He
did not make his leadership ofiensive by a too open assertion or
display of it, but molded and guided by suggestion rather than
by decree. No leader was ever more accessible to friends of
every degree, none ever accepted counsel more kindly, or more
wisely and cordially applauded the efforts of the aspiring young
men who delighted to follow his political fortunes. His manner
as a public speaker was animated and graceful. In style he was
clear, often pungent, and always persuasive. Large audiences
always assembled to hear him, and if he did not win over his
adversaries, he left them kindly disposed, and always strength-
ened and consolidated his own party. More than once he was
called by the unanimous voice of his party to accept a nomina-
tion that he did not want. He could not resist the friendly
urgency of his party associates, and yielded his preferences to
theirs at great personal inconvenience and sacrifice.
My first vote was cast against Mr. Hendricks, as the candi-
date of his party for Congress, in the year 1854. The first joint
meeting with a political opponent in which I was ever engaged
was with Mr. Hendricks. He was the Democratic candidate
for governor in i860, and I, then a very young man, was the
68 LIFE AXD CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
Republican candidate for reporter of the decisions of the su-
preme court. By chance, during the campaign of that year,
we met at Rockville and found that our meetings were an-
nounced for the same hour and place. It was arranged that we
should hold a joint meeting. Air. Hendricks spoke first, and
I well recall the effect of his persuasive address upon a respon-
sive audience and upon m\-self as I sat before him, waiting in
great trepidation for my time to come. When he concluded,
Mr. Hendricks, with great kindness, requested his friends to
remain and hear me, and often afterward alluded in very kind
terms to my youthful performance. It was an illustration of a
prominent trait of his character, a disposition to encourage with
kindly praise the efforts of )oung men. From that time for-
ward in every political campaign we were both upon the stump
in Indiana, the earnest advocates of the political principles of
our respective parties. He thought the principles I advocated
were adverse to the best interests of the countr}', and said so,
and with equal plainness and sincerity I criticised his public
acts and political views, but I am not aware that either of us
ever charged the other with overstepping the fair limits of pub-
It was as a practicing lawyer that I knew Mr. Hendricks
best. Often associated with him in the trial of causes, I have
seen him in the freedom of the office consultation and have
listened to his arguments in court from the standpoint of an asso-
ciate. Often upon adverse sides I have had occasion to feel the
force of his simple and effective eloquence upon a jury. He was
remarkably urbane and courteous in his manner as well to the
members of the bar as to the court. Rarely out of temper, he
was vet firm and courageous in the defense of his own rie-hts
and those of his client. I saw him once conduct with unflinch-
ing courage a civil cause for damages growing out of the trial
ADDRESS OF MR. HARRISON, OF INDIANA. 69
during the war before a militar}- commission of a citizen ac-
cused of disloyal practices. The supreme court had decided
the imprisonment of his client to have been illegal, and his
technical right to damages was clear. But the defendants were
soldiers — some of them wounded soldiers — who had acted under
militar>' orders in the trial of his client.
No advocate ever had a stronger adverse current of popular
opinion and sympathy to stem than did Mr. Hendricks in this
case. A verdict for more than nominal damages was hopeless,
and }-et through a long trial Mr. Hendricks never faltered,
but with the greatest tact and courage demanded of court and
jury full damages for the long imprisonment his client had suf-
Through his long public career Mr. Hekdricks always
maintained his connection with the law firm of which he had
so long been a member except when holding an office the duties
of which were incompatible with any professional employ-
ments. The profession was more to him than a means of live-
lihood. He was a thoughtful student of the philosophy of the
law. ' The springs of human motive and action are uncovered
to no one as they are to the lawyer, and to ]Mr. Hendricks
this study did not end with the demands of a cause. He once
The law to me has always been a fascinating business. I never go into a court-
room to try a case but it seems picturesque ground to me. I like to watch a case begin
and expand and see the various kinds of characters that attend it.
Judge James S. Frazier, formerly one of the judges of the su-
preme court of Indiana, said of Mr. Hendricks at the memo-
rial meeting of the bar of the State:
And yet he could pass from the floor of the Senate into the forum of justice .ind be a
giant there. I witnessed this once with admiring won..cr in our own supreme court
while a member of it, and heard from him what the judges all regarded as being, in both
matter and manner, the most masterly argument made in that court during a term of
70 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
service of six years. There was no audience to inspire him — not more than half a dozen
persons and the four judges. Populai applause was not to be won by the effort.. The
great lawyer argued like a lawyer should before a court the questions of law in his
cause. That was all. But it was much, as attesting the manner of man he was a.s one
of our profession.
In his private life Mr. Hendricks was even more fortunate
than in his public life. The circle of his friendship was wider,
for it went beyond the lines of a party. Those who sharply
criticised his public acts found in his private life nothing to
condemn and much to admire. Personal integrity, great kind-
ness of heart, a wide human sympathy, and a pure home life
were virtues that all accorded to him. The wife whom he
wooed and wed when the first small gains of his profession gave
promise of a safe future walked with him in loving affection to
the end. The vow, "Till death do us part," had been kept.
In the first year of his term as Vice-President, in the midst
of preparations to resume in this body the duties of his office,
filled with pleasant anticipations of social intercourse, suddenly,
as in the twinkling of an eye, the messenger of death called
him. And yet Mr. Hendricks had not been without warning
that death might come to him suddenly. A slight stroke of
paralysis several years ago excited the solicitude of his friends,
and no doubt turned his own thoughts toward the solemn hour.
He did not, however, allow this danger to cloud his spirits or
to drive him from the activities of life. Indeed, the last year
of his life seemed to be unusually full of gladness aud labor.
It seemed to him better to expend the days that remained in
useful labor rather than in vain complainings.
So at the post
^^^lere He hath set me in His providence
I chose for one to meet Him face to face —
No faithless servant frightened from my task.
But ready when the Lord of the Harvest calls.
ADDRESS OF MR. HARRISON, OF INDIANA.
Mr. President, I move the adoption of the resolutions before
the Senate, and that the House of Representatives be advised
of the action of the Senate thereon.
The President pi'o tempore. ■ The question is on the adop-
tion of the resolutions.
The resolutions were adopted unanimously.
Mr. Harrison. As a further mark of respect to the memory
of Mr. Hendricks I move that the Senate do now adjourn.
The motion was agreed to ; and (at 3 o' clock and 10 minutes
p. m.) the Senate adjourned.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
February 2, 18S6.
The House met at 12 o'clock m. Prayer by the Chaplain,
Rev. W. H. MiLBURN, D. D., as follows:
Almighty God, from whom cometh every good and perfect
gift, we reverently bless Thee for the great body of pure and
excellent men that have been raised up through Thy providence
from generation to generation to serve the state in all the de-
partments of the Government, and as we are met to-day to pay
the tribute of our reverent admiration and love for a departed
statesman and patriot, noble and beautiful in his public and
his private walks by devotion to home, to country, to duty,
and to his God, may our own patriotism become stronger and
deeper, our love of countr}' more pure and fer\'ent, our love of
God more deep and true and tender, and so doing our duty in
high or in low places where Thou callest i:s to act, may we
come at last to the reward which Thou has promised to all who
love and serve Thee. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Clerk proceeded to read the Journal of yesterday's pro-
74 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
Mr. Beach. I ask unanimous consent to dispense with the
reading of so much of the Journal as relates to bills and reso-
There was no objection.
The reading of the Journal was completed and, as read, was
The Speaker. By order of the House the remainder of this
day is set apart for the consideration of resolutions in relation
to the death of the late Vice-President of the United States.
Mr. HoLMAN. I submit the resolutions which I send to the
Resolved, That the House has received with profound sorrow the intelligence of the
death of Thomas A. Hendricks, late Vice-President of the United States.
Resolved, That the business cf the House be suspended in order that the eminent
public services and the private virtues of the deceased may be appropriately commemo-
Resolved, 'Ihat the Clerk of the House be directed to communicate these resolutions
to the Senate.
Mr. HoLMAN. I yield the floor to the gentleman [Mr. Bvnum]
representing the district of Indiana in which the late Vice-
President of the United States resided.
Address of Mr. Bynum, of Indiana.
Mr. Speaker, Thomas A. Hendricks, Vice-President of the
United States, died suddenly at his home in Indianapolis on
the 25th of last November, between the hours of 4 and 5 o'clock
in the afternoon.
On the evening prior to his death he attended .a reception at
ADDRESS OF MR. BYNUM, OF INDIANA. 75
the residence of State Treasurer Cooper, and, though slightly
complaining, was the recipient of many congratulations upon
his healthful appearance. On this occasion he was exception-
ally affable, and participated in the pleasures of the evening
with rare grace and extreme joy. Upon his return home he did
not rest well, and the next morning the family physician was
summoned, who, finding nothing serious the matter, admin-
istered an anodyne to relieve the pain of which he complained.
No one but himself entertained any thoughts of approaching
danger, and the only manifestation of fear upon his part was the
gloom of doubt which seemed to be hovering around his mind,
causing him to crave the continued presence of Mrs. Hendricks
by his side. She was constantly with him on the day of his
death until late in the afternoon, when she left him alone, rest-
ing comfortably and apparently safely, to receive some friends.
She was absent only a few minutes, but when she returned his
great spirit was gone.
The news of his death flew fast and far, and ere the noon of
night had passed a feeling of sorrow was in every heart and a
shade of sadness upon every brow Death had not stricken the
first-born, yet there was mourning in every household. When
the startling news of his death was first communicated to me I
was reminded of the time when Burke was making a speech at
the hustings in a race for the House of Commons news was
brought him of the death of his competitor. Dropping the sub-
ject of his speech, he exclaimed, ' ' This teaches us what shadows
we are and what shadows we pursue."
Representing in this House the district in which Mr. Hen-
dricks lived from his childhood, and in part — that part nearest
and dearest to him by ties of friendship, of kindred, and of
home — the district which he represented a third of a century
ago, I feel that I would not only fail to discharge a public duty
76 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
but would be an unworthy exponent of the wishes and senti-
ments of the people I represent should I fail to assist in em-
balming the memory of the distinguished dead with the grand
achievements of his life, in which they so proudly claim to have
been participants. He was no ordinary man. He was one of
the few great men whose greatness increased and whose grand-
eur became more sublime the nearer you approached him.
Mr. Hendricks was born in Muskingum County, in the
State of Ohio, on the 7th day of September, 1819. His jDarents
the next year removed to Indiana, finally, in 1822, settling in
Shelby County, then almost a wilderness, now a garden. It was
here, upon his father's farm, that he spent his youthful days.
Here, under the teachings of his noble parents by precept and
example, was laid the foundation of that great moral and intel-
lectual structure which he afterwards builded so symmetrically
and so grandly. After receiving such an education as the com-
mon schools in those primitive days afforded, there was kindled
in his youthful mind an unquenchable desire for greater knowl-
edge. He entered Hanover College, near ]\Iadison, in Jefferson
County, and graduated from that institution in 1841. He began
the study of the law and was admitted to practice in Shelby-
ville in 1843. He was married to Miss Eliza C. Morgan in the
year 1845, ^^^ lived happily with her the remainder of his life,
and of whom it has been truly said ever afterward was his
Companion, counselor, and friend.
In his profession Mr. Hendricks attained the highest alti-
tude and stood at the head of the bar in Indiana and ranked with
the great lawyers of the country. He was not only a jurist of
great science, but an advocate of matchless power. He could
ably discuss the most intricate questions of law before the high-
est judicial tribunals and as ably present the facts in a case to a
jury gathered fresh from field or shop. In court he was always
ABDHESS OF MR. BYiVUM, OF INDIANA. 77
courteous but dignified, never overstepping the limits of highest
decorum. He treated the younger members of the bar with the
same consideration as their elders, never attempting to decry
their positions or answer their arguments except by sound logic
and clear reasoning. During the progress of a trial he closely
watched the impressions his adversary would make upon court
or jury, and at the first onset would skillfully attempt to parry
the blow or fence the thrust. He never permitted himself to be
surprised. He always carefully estimated the force of the op-
position, and calculated the strength of his own position with a
precision that inspired the confidence of his client and gave
weight and color to his cause. When engaged in a trial by
jury lie would ascertain and study the individual histor>' and
character of the jurors, and was careful never to antagonize a
prejudice, but at every opportunity would say something to cap-
tivate their minds until he had gained full possession of their
In the order and arrangement of testimony and in the exam-
ination of witnesses he was careful and painstaking; in the
more dangerous part, the cross-examination, he was cautious,
never giving a biased witness an opportunity to injure his cause
or stab his client. His arguments were clear and forcible, com-
mending themselves to the soundest judgments; his appeals elo-
quent, arousing the noblest impulses of the human heart. He
was a model that any student of highest ambition might adopt,
the bar of any State be proud of, and the courts of any country
welcome to its forum.
The great talents he possessed as a lawyer were, however, car-
ried into a higher field and crowned with greater laurels than
could be won at the bar. Starting early in life, he gradually
arose from an unostentatious beginning to the highest plane of
78 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
His public life, running through the most critical period in
our history, stands to-day, from beginning to end, without an
inconsistency or contradiction.
In 1848 he was elected a member of the Indiana legislature
from Shelby County.
In 1850 he was chosen a member of the constitutional conven-
tion which framed the present constitution of that State.
In 1851 he was elected a member of this House and s'.rved
He was appointed Commissioner of the General Land Office
by President Pierce in 1855 and served till 1859, when he re-
In 1S60 he was the unanimous choice of his party for gov-
ernor of his State, but was defeated at the election by Henry
In 1862 he was the unanimous choice ofhis party for United
States Senator, and on the 12th of January, 1863, was elected
to a seat in that body and served from the 4th of March, 1863,
In 1 868, although not a candidate, he was supported by the
Empire State, and came near being nominated by his party in
convention at New York for the Presidency. In that year he
was again unanimously chosen a candidate for governor, and
after a vigorous campaign was defeated by Conrad Baker by a
In 1872, against his wish, he was again unanimously nomi-
nated for governor, and after a hard-fought contest was elected,
the balance of the ticket, with one exception, being defeated.
In 1876, without solicitation, the Democratic national con-
vention at Saint Louis with great enthusiasm unanimously nom-
inated him for the Vice- Presidency.
In 1884, against his desire, the Democratic national conven-
ADDRESS OF MR. BYNUM, OF INDIANA. 79
tion at Chicago again unanimously nominated him for the Vice-
Presidency, to which he was elected and inaugurated on the 4th
of last March.
He discharged the duties of a legislator in the general as-
sembly to which he was first elected with care and fidelity. As
a member of the constitutional convention he was overshadowed
by men of greater experience, but took an active part, alwaj-s
commanding the respect and attention of the members when he
spoke. As a member of Congress he began fully to display the
inherent powers and great talents which afterward made his
name familiar to every household in the land. As Commis-
sioner of the General Land Office, he organized and systema-
tized the departments and instituted reforms, giving abundant
proofs of his great executive abilities, which afterward charac-
terized his administration as governor of Indiana. As United
States Senator, he rose to the full stature of his country's op-
portunities and his own duties. No Senator ever stood in the
halls of that body who devoted himself with greater diligence,
fidelity, and patriotism to the discharge of the high duties of
that exalted position than did Mr. Hendricks. During the
days of reconstruction contests daily arose that required the
greatest efibrts of the mightiest intellects.
He was the leader of his party, but facing upon the other side
was his colleague, the giant Morton. Both have gone to rest,
and peacefully sleep upon the beautiful heights of Crown Hill,
where the same dew-drops will kiss the flowers that bloom
around their graves and the gentle zephyrs waft messages of
peace and good-will from mound to mound.
Mr. Hendricks's great strength and popularity were with
the people. He never assumed to dictate or even command.
During his long public career he never attempted to organize a
personal party. His party was the great Democracy, to which
8o LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
he consistently adhered through storm as well as through sttn-
shine ; through the disasters of defeat as well as through the
fortunes of success. The great principles of Democracy were
to him sacred, and he clung to them through all the contests of
earth as tenaciously "as the mariner clings to the last plank
when the night and the tempest close around him."
His great qualities as a leader cannot be overestimated.
He was the great isolated figure aroimd which the Demo-
cratic party of the nation rallied during its darkest days and
when it looked as though its hour of dissolution was about to
come. He was the first Democratic governor elected in a
Northern State after the war. His greatest act of leadership,
not only of leadership but of statesmanship, was exhibited from
1874 to 1876. In his State in 1874 a )oung, vigorous, and ag-
gressive party, the Greenback party, began to make serious in-
roads upon the ranks of the Democracy, which he had so suc-
cessfully preserved intact through all the vicissitudes of the
war. There began to spring up a division of sentiment between
the great men of his party, and the rank and file began to rally
to the support of this or that element until a division looked
almost inevitable. Mr. Hendricks possessed the clearest ideas
upon questions of finance, but he saw a sentiment, uncontrolla-
ble, tearing across the country like a tornado, ready to embrace
the crudest plans and most visionary ideas upon this most im-
portant question. Standing between the columns, he laid a hand
upon each and imperceptibly changed their course, until they
gradually came together, when, at their head, in 1876, he led
them up in solid column to the support of Samuel J. Tilden and
himself for President and Vice-President of the United States.
He was sometimes criticised for the want of positive ideas,
for the want of boldness in the declaration of his principles.
No more unjust criticism was ever made. Caution is no more
ADDRESS OF MR. BY.yUM, OF INDIANA. 8 1
cowardice than rashness is bra\er}-. In counsel he was defiant
in the statement of his opinions, and supported them with an
earnestness and an aggressiveness that not only carried convic-
tion but elicited admiration. He was careful to investigate,
but when he once took a position he was as firm as the rock-
bound coast against which the waves may dash but rebound to
be broken asunder upon the ocean's bosom. When he desig-
nated the point of attack and marked out the line of march
every' recruit was ready to follow him, conscious that no enemy
was in ambush upon the line to open a deadly fire upon their
Mr.. Hendricks never declared a proposition he could not
defend; never uttered a sentence he was compelled to retract.
His courage was once fully tested when an excited populace,
following the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, demanded of
him that he pledge his support to the administration of Andrew
Johnson. He said: " I will support the administration of An-
drew Johnson only in so far as I believe it to be within the
limits of the Constitution of my country." At the time he
thus boldly stated his sentiments he knew that the declaration
might cost him his life, and it came near doing so.
Public life with him was not an ambition but a duty. He
could stand defeat without the least despondency or the slight-
est evidence of disappointment; he could stand success without
the least assumption or exultation. But few men could alter-
nate from public to private and from private to public life with
the ease, grace, and contentment which were evidenced in his
career. He could quit his office for a seat in this House or in
the Senate seemingly without noticing the change, and at the
end of his term could return as contentedly as though he had
only been away upon a pleasure trip. Wherever his lot was
cast his mind was content and his soul enlisted.
S. Mis. 120 (i
82 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
He was an honest man. It is a remarkable fact that in the
many high and responsible positions which he filled and the
many contests through which he passed suspicion never breathed
a calumny against his integrity. He passed through the fiery
furnace without a scar, closing an eventful life of an eventful
period without a blemish to mar its beauty or destroy its sym-
metry. His statue, to fitly represent him, should be chiseled
of spotless white marble.
Such in brief was the public life of Thomas A. Hendricks,
and in many respects it is without a parallel in history. For
twenty-five years he was the accepted leader of his party in his
State, no one contesting his right or challenging his authority.
Three times the unanimous choice of his party for governor ;
unanimously chosen a candidate for United States Senator;
twice unanimously nominated as a candidate for the Vice-Presi-
dency, the cup of his ambition, though he never reached the
Presidency, was filled to overflowing. Indiana during her
career as a State has given to the country a galaxy of most
brilliant men. Among her jurists were Blackford, Dewey, and
Sullivan, whose opinions are pre-eminently a part of the juris-
prudence of the country. Among her statesmen were Edward
A. Hannegan, George G. Dunn, Asjibel P. Willard, Henry S.
Lane, and Oliver P. Morton.
The names of these men garnish the pages of historj-. State
and national, and, though sacred in death, it is not improper to
say in all that made men great Thomas A. Hendricks will
pass into history as the peer of any that preceded him. While
he may not have possessed the diction of Hannegan, the fire of
Dunn, the magnetism of Willard, the rhetoric of Lane, or the
logic of Morton, he combined all these gifts in a high degree,
which, coupled with his great moral powers, make him the co-
ADDRESS OF MR. BYNUM, OF INDIANA. 83
lossal figure in the history of Indiana and place his name in
the list of great men of the greatest nation.
It is not, however, the public life of Mr. Hendricks that is
the greatest pride of his neighbors and the highest solace of his
In their hours of gloom they recall him not as governor, as
Senator, or as Vice-President, but they weep for him as friend,
neighbor, brother, and husband. Through his whole life he
was a Christian ; and although an active and consistent member
of the church, his religion was more in acts than in words.
He daily practiced the greatest of all virtues — charity. There
are many left behind who to-day miss his generous heart and
open hand. All along the pathway of his life are scattered
jewels of charity that will finally be gathered home by the
angels in eternity. As a neighbor he was always kind, as a
friend always true, as a husband he was not only devoted but
His life was great, his death sublime. As he faintly heard
the hoofs of the messenger's steed on his way to summon him
I'rom time to eternity, and was preparing to start upon his
journey beyond the clouds, looking back over his important
career, viewing the great struggles through which he had passed
and the great contests in which he had borne such a conspicuous
part, feeling the weight of the burdens he had so long and so
patiently borne being gently lifted from his shoulders, his last
words were, "I am free at last."
84 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
Address of Mr. McCreary, of Kentucky.
Mr. Speaker, during the last year death gathered into his
garner a rich harvest of our able and worthy men, but no one
was more loved and respected and none contributed more to
embellish American history than the distinguished subject of
the resolutions now before the House.
Thomas A. Hendricks, late Vice-President of the United
States, was born September 7, 1819. Full of years and crowned
with civic honors, he died November 25, 1885. The evening
before Thanksgiving Day our whole country was startled and
sorrow-stricken by the news of his death, and when the Forty-
ninth Congress assembled this Capitol was still draped in
mouniing and the shadow of a great bereavement hovered like
a gloomy pall over our country.
He was the fifth Vice-President who died in office, and like
George Clinton of New York, Elbridge Gerry of Maine, William
R. King of Alabama, and Henry Wilson of Massachusetts, he
came to the Vice-Presidency after a long and splendid public
career. His life illustrated the possibilities of an American
citizen, and came fully up to Blackstone's aphorism, "Act
honestly, live honorably, and render to every man his dues."
His death was a national calamity, and common sympathy and
common sorrow for his loss brought to his countrymen, as they
did honor to his memor)-, irrespective of part)- or section, truer
fellowship and closer friendship.
The great and good men of a nation ennoble it and give
character and prominence to it at home and abroad. All their
fellow-citizens have a common interest in them, and when they
die all love to pay homage to their virtues. The tributes of
respect that have been paid to the memory of our late Vice-
ADDRESS OF MR. M<^CREARY, OF KENTUCKY. 85
President in everv' part of our land ; the chaplets without num-
ber that have been woven from the flowers of sincerest love and
respect; the eulogies that have been spoken in the forum, at the
bar, in the Senate, in the sacred Church, and in thosuands of
humble homes and stately mansions prove how thoroughl}- he
is entitled to be ranked among our great and good men.
I first became acquainted with l\Ir. Hendricks when he v.-as
governor of Indiana and I was governor of Kentucky and it
became necessary to locate a disputed boundary line between
our respective States. In that important business he deported
himself with the same fairness and firmness and ability that ever
characterized his whole life. I am glad to place on record now
that from that time I was his friend and admirer.
Kentucky is only separated from Indiana by the beautiful Ohio
River, and Kentuckians gave to Mr. Hendricks the same friend-
ship and admiration that greeted him in his own State. I be-
lieve I but speak their sentiments when I say we were proud of
him as a leader, counselor, and statesman; we loved him as a
neighbor and friend, and we deeply deplore his death.
His political career extended from 1848, when he first entered
the Indiana Legislature, nearly to 18S6 — a period of thirty-eight
years of prominence and usefulness in the service of his State
and nation. He was a member of the constitutional convention
held in Indiana in 1850, and ser\'ed with Hon. Schuyler Colfax,
afterward Vice-President of the United States, and with Hon.
William S. Holman, now a distinguished member of this Plouse,
and he was conspicuous in the United States Senate among such
Senators as Allen G. Thurman, Thomas F. Bayard, John Sher-
man, and Roscoe Conkling. In 1S51 he first entered Congress.
No member now on this floor was a member then, but there
were many able and brilliant men in Congress. Henr}- Clay,
with his clarion voice and thrilling eloquence; Charles Sumner,
86 /.//■£ AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
with his wisdom and culture and power; Alexander H. Stephens,
with his splendid intellect and captivating manners; Salmon
P. Chase, with his comprehensive knowledge and indomitable
energy, and Stephen A. Douglass, with his logic and courage
and great ability, were all then Senators or Representatives in
Congress. They are all dead now, but their names are written
high on the roll of fame, and they will be remembered and
cherished as long as our Republic has a histSry or freedom a
home on earth. To this list will now be added the name of
Thomas A. Hendricks, and it will remain as imperishable
and honorable as the names of any of the illustrious statesmen
with whom he served.
He lived in important and critical times, and he acted his
part well both in peace and in war. A sketch of his life is a
sketch of his country's history for a third of a centur)'.
As a citizen he was broad and benevolent. As a lawyer he
was able, faithful, and fearless ; and as a political debater his
Damascus blade was never vanquished and but seldom parried.
The subjects he discussed embraced all the leading questions and
political policies of his time. His views on education, com-
merce, finance, agriculture, an honest, economical administra-
tion of the Government, the sovereignty of the people, the in-
dependence of the co-ordinate departments of the Government,
were ofter announced in no uncertain terms. Common sense,
practical ideas, and conservative opinions were strong features
in his statesmanship, and he was ever the friend and advocate
of all the great reform measures that have elevated and purified
our Republic. Whether we view him as legislator. Commis-
sioner of the General Land Office, Representative in Congress,
governor of Indiana, Senator, or Vice-President of the United
States, we see the impress of his splendid mind and the luster
of his unfaltering patriotism and noble manhood. . He was
ADDRESS OF MR. MCCREARY, OF KENTUCKY. 87
never dazzled by visionary theories nor deluded by speculative
projects, but he worked for what he regarded as the good of the
people and the welfare of the Republic. In his whole career
as citizen, lawyer, and statesman, and even in the heat of
fiercest political conflicts, no breath of suspicion ever assailed
his integrity or dimmed the brightness of his honor.
No man ever had more of the confidence and affection of the
people of his own State than Tpiomas A. Hendricks. As a
candidate for governor he led the Democrats of Indiana to vic-
tory in 1872, when ever>' other candidate on the Democratic
ticket went down to defeat. The enthusiasm and earnestness
with which his Indiana friends supported him for President at
the Saint Louis convention in 1876 has never been exceeded,
and the thrilling scene in the Chicago convention in 1884, when
the attempt was made to nominate him for President, will ever
be remembered as positive proof of his great popularity through-
out the United States. Nominated in 1876 for Vice-President,
he carried his State in a brilliant contest, in which he was op-
posed by a thoroughly organized party, under the leadership of
Oliver P. Morton, the ablest and strongest Republican who
ever lived in Indiana ; and nominated again for Vice-President
in 1884, he again led his party to victory in a canvass that will
ever remain memorable in the history of our country.
On the threshold of grand honors and high authority he died,
among his kindred and friends, in his own State, at his own
home, where he was enjoying the affection of his accomplished
and devoted wife. If death can be robbed of his sting; if the
pathway to the tomb can be smoothed, surely he went to his
grave in "ways of peace and paths of pleasantness. "
His friends are preparing to erect a monument to his memory.
He needs no monument to perpetuate the blazonry of his deeds,
the triumphs of his eventful life, or the beauty and simplicity
88 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
of his character. "Not all the marble of Carrara, fashioned by
the chisel of Angelo into the mimicrj- of breathing life, can
convey to the senses a likeness so perfect as that which he has
left on the minds of men. ' ' Yet I believe the monument should
be erected. It will be an inspiration to this and succeeding
generations; it will be an evidence of the love and esteem of
his countrymen whom he ser\'ed so faithfully and on whom he
reflected the grandeur of his patriotism and statesmanship, and
it will tell the world that he belonged to an honored race, of
which he was a chief and a champion.
Address of Mr. Long, of Massachusetts.
IMr. Speaker, I am sure the loyal Commonwealth of Massa-
chusetts, which I have the honor to represent in part upon this
floor, would not have me remain silent when, because I once .
occupied her executive chair, I am asked by the courtesy of the
Representatives of her sister State of Indiana to join in the rec-
ognition which the House to-day pays to the memory of the
late Vice-President of the United States. Her great majority,
Mr. Speaker, diflfered from him upon all the leading political
issues which agitated the country during his public career, and
on which they believed his views to be contrar}' to the public
welfare. But they recognize not alone the high abilities which
won him distinguished advancement in the profession of the
law, of which he was an ornament, and in the councils of his
State and the nation, the highest places of which he reached,
but also and especially the undoubted consistency of his polit-
ical life and the excellences and worth which, in his private
character, gave him such a remarkably strong hold upon the
people of his State, and endeared him, as the spontaneous testi-
mony of members of all political parties shows, to the large
ADDRESS OF MR. LONG, OF MASSACHUSETTS. 89
and, we may well say, the deserved circle of his personal friends.
He was the Vice-President of the East as well as of the West —
of Indiana not more than of Massachusetts. And when, soon
after his election, he came to that ancient Commonwealth, it was
to receive at all hands more generously even than he could have
anticipated the distinguished and cordial welcome which was
due him in his exalted station; to be invited to the hospitality
of her municipalities and of her seats of learning; and to be
greeted by the whole body of her intelligent and patriotic peo-
ple, who stand always ready to support this Republic of indis-
soluble union and liberty, and who will fail in no obligation to
those who have been chosen to administer its high offices.
The life of "Six. Hendricks, sir, illustrates, I believe, not
only the splendid opportunities of American manhood, the mas-
tery of circumstance, the attainment by self-exertion of high
commanding place. It illustrates all these, and illustrates
them signally; yet I love to think it illustrates still more the
elastic and admirable adjustabilit}- of our national system — its
strength rer-iding in its very ease and variety of change. Coming
into power a^^ the representative of a party which for a quarter
of a century had been out of the executive administration, with
what patriotic gratiiication we all now recall the fact that he
encountered no look askance, no sullen defiance, but wherever
he went a generous spirit of loyalty, a general readiness to ac-
cept the new departure for all it was worth, a concensus of public
sentiment in the hope of the public welfare, and a disposition
to give the new administration every facility for the promotion
of every good cause. He became the second officer of a reunited
Republic which had a few years ago overcome the terrible con-
vulsion that not only for a time rent North and South apart,
but also, it should be remembered to-day, strained tlie Nortj
90 LIFE AXD CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
itself in sharp and threatening political divisions of policy and
sentiment, of the more unpopular extreme of which he was per-
haps the most distinguished representative. And \et to the
second place in the administration of that restored Union the
revolving wheel of events raised him; and to-day I believe, and
we all believe, and the world is acknowledging, that Union is
stronger, is more united, aye, is more loyal, ]\Ir. Speaker, be-
cause of the discipline of that convulsion and of our magnificent
and triumphant mastery of it. Already we realize what his-
tor\- will record— that all's well that is ended well. Over your
head, sir, is the flag of a Republic which, in its verj^ storm and
peril, brought out leaders and representatives of the variety of
opinion referred to by my friend from Kentucky [Mr. Mc-
Creary] and constituting that galaxy of clustering stars in our
historical firmament, some names of which he enumerated; a
Republic which has thus shown itself to be so happily consti-
tuted, so constitutionally systemized, that it plucks the flower
of safety out of every nettle of danger. And docs this l^ecause
the freedom which it extends to individuality, though that in-
dividuality be unpopular, the freedom which it extends to the
right of private judgment, to the expression of honest difference
of opinion, to the heated ebullition and therefore the purer dis-
tillation of national sentiment — that very freedom residts in the
one true, sure foundation of a government of the people — which
is their education by their mutual attrition up to their duties
and their rights. All this, Mr. Speaker, I believe — and it seems
to me to be the real significance of this occasion — all this is in-
dicative of what lies deepest in the hearts of the American peo-
ple and most animates them. The frets, the yest, the white-
caps are always on the surface; and, beaten by them, our toss-
; :ig craft of local and personal interests seem to be always in
ADDJiESS OF MR. THROCKMORTON, OF TEXAS. 9 1
Storm and in shipwreck. But beneath these, thank Heaven,
the deep, unfathomable caves of public opinion, of national loy-
alty, of popular brotherhood and common interest lie serene
and undisturbed. They are an immeasurable fountain of the
wholesome waters of life. They are an inexhaustible reservoir
of the health of a republic of educated, self-respecting, and equal
Address of Mr. Throckmorton, of Texas.
Mr. Speaker, representing a people who intelligently appre-
ciated his piiblic services and throughout his career honored
and trusted him, I offer my humble tribute of admiration to
the memory of Thomas A. Hendricks.
We best honor the dead and most benefit the living when we
form a just estimate of their characters and lives and accept
and apply the instructive and inspiriting lessons which they
Great gifts are the necessar}' conditions of a great character,
but the existence of the former does not always guarantee the
possession of the latter ; because character, in contradistinction
to endowments, represents the fashioning of the latter into dis-
tinctive forms. They stand related as the marble block to the
perfect statue hewn from it. God gives the one ; man himself,
by his thought and action, creates the other. As the statue is
the concretion of the artistic thought, so a great character must
be formed upon a great ideal and be developed in harmony with
it. The apt parable used by the great Teacher to illustrate
the historical development of the Christian system with equal
force teaches the order of human growth, "First the blade,
then the ear ; after that the full com in the ear" — inception,
development, and maturity.
92 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
Life is character in movement — is the visible expression of
the sum of human energies in their organized activity. The
best-equipped soldier will win no victories in the absence of
conflict, and the wisest programme will avail nothing in valu-
able results in the absence of opportunities for its execution.
As movement is the condition of growth, so appropriate occa-
sions must be supplied to awaken and stimulate the potent but
otherwise latent human forces which produce that great work
called life. We cannot, therefore, conceive of a grand life
except when we contemplate capacity in conjunction with its
appropriate and sufficient opportunities. A heroic occasion,
crowned by a heroic act, sometimes determines before the world
a grand life, giving not only its quality but supplying its meas-
ure. Such occasions, however, are rare and exceptional. Oul\-
here and there in human history is found a Thermopylae and a
Leonidas to stand in the breach.
The common fortune embraces ov^y the ordinary occurrences
of humanity, and the excellence that attaches to each well-done
act must be the mt-a.-ure of the glory that crowns a finished
career. While character is an evolution in an important and
popular sense, life is a cumulation, to be estimated not 1)y its
individual incidents but their aggregate. The grandeur of a
career is measured by the sum of the great and excellent things
that may have been done. Time, therefore, no less than op-
portunities, generally becomes an important element of human
The distinguished statesman whom we seek to honor by these
memorial services was fortunate in the possession of the capaci-
ties and conditions needful to the largest human success. Gifted
with splendid powers, he, in his youth, conceived that ideal
upon which his character was formed and his energies directed.
ADDRESS OF MR. THROCKMORTON, OF TEXAS. 93
He lived in that crucial period of our history when great occa-
sions and inspiring opportunities were constantly supplied; and,
finally, the Master of life gave him "length of days," so that
he not only scattered but gathered the fruits of his sowing; not
only worked and sometimes "went forth weeping," but saw
the fruits of his labors -and returned "bearing his sheaves with
In the life and fortunes of Mr. Hendricks we have a splen-
did illustration of the honorable successes that will crown defi-
nite and sustained effort in public life under our free institutions.
He.was specific in his purposes — personal, domestic, social, and
political. He set himself to do a specific work in every relation
of life, and consecrated all his powers continuously and persist-
ently until the end sought was accomplished. To this definite-
ness of aim, this steadiness of purpose, and its sustained, patient,
hopeful endea^'or are referable the successes and honors that
crowned him. There was nothing episodical in his career;
nothing spasmodic in his efforts; nothing fragmentary in his
life. In defeat and victory, under cloud and sunshine, he res-
olutely attempted to realize in action his convictions of duty.
He was a typical American citizen and statesman, representing
fully as any one who has preceded him the full capabilities and
consumations of American manhood. And now, full of years
and honors, in the maturity of his character, he has been
gathered to his fathers. He wrought wisely, and his life in its
round perfected unity praises him.
There is much in the useful and splendid career of Mr. Hen-
dricks which should encourage those who survive him to
higher and more unselfish devotion to the country' and Govern-
ment he loved so well and served so loyally.
And there is in that life lessons of courage and firmness, of
94 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
magnanimity, and devotion to convictions- of duty, a steady
adherence to principle and a singleness and purity of purpose
that should inspire those to whom the destinies of this great
Republic are soon to be intrusted with the same excellence of
purpose and patriotic devotion to country that made it so con-
spicuous in shining virtues and crowning glories.
Address of Mr. DiNGLEY, of Maine.
Mr. Speaker, as one of the members of the House who occu-
pied the executive chair of a State of the Union contempora-
neously with Mr. Hendricks's service as governor of Indiana,
I have been invited to briefly speak on this occasion.
My personal acquaintance with the late Vice-President was
slight, and my knowledge of him mainly confined to sources
open to all. While my own political views were in sharp an-
tagonism to those held by him, and I often had occasion to ex-
press my dissent from his position on many public questions,
yet I recognized his ability and admired his kindly nature and
unspotted private character.
Though I met Mr. Hendricks socially only once, yet I saw
enough of him on that occasion to understand the secret of his
great personal popularity in Indiana. The kindliness of his
manner, his affability toward all who approached him, and his
uniform courtesy to the humblest, united with a dignity and
self-poise which lent a charm to his presence, made him hosts
of friends, and even disarmed to a certain extent the criticisms
of political opponents.
In the heat of party conflicts, characterized so often by unjust
assaults on personal character, I do not remember to have heard
or read any charge reflecting on Mr. Hendricks's integrity.
Certainly if any such charge was ever made it fell harmless at
ADDRESS OJ' MK. HEWITT, OEAEtl' i CA'A". 95
his feet. His private life was above reproach, and his example
a beneficent influence in the community in which he lived.
The loving tenderness of Mr. Hendricks's domestic life, as
illustrated by incidents which have found their way into print,
has made his memory in this respect a sweet savor wherever
happy homes are recognized as the citadel of national virtue
and the hope of the world.
The time came to the late Vice-President, as it must come
sooner or later to all, when the honors of this world, high as
were those with which he was crowned, faded into insignifi-
cance, and the soul's queries of "What then?" asserted their
rightful pre-eminence. In such a supreme test of truth infi-
delity and skepticism disclose their nakedness, and only the
eye of Christian faith can look through th^ somber cloud and
see the golden lining on the other side.
Such a faith Mr. Hendricks avowed and leaned on v/hen
declining health admonished him that the end of this life
approached and the life beyond drew near.
Address of Mr. Hewitt, of New 'York.
Mr. Speaker, I never felt greater regret at the absence of my
former colleague, Mr. Cox, from this House than on the pres-
ent occasion, when the friend of his youth is the subject of
eulogy. With his insight into character, his channing felicity
of language, his grace of illustration, justice would have been
done on behalf of the State of New York to the memory of the
My personal acquaintance with Thomas A. Hendricks only
began after his nomination for Vice-President on the Demo-
cratic ticket in 1876. I was, of course, familiar with his careci
during the many years when he made his record in his ov.t
96 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
State and in the Senate of the United States as a faithful public
servant, as the advocate of sound political principles, and as the
opponent of legislation which tends to create privileged classes
and to enrich the few at the expense of the many.
So high a position did Mr. Hexdricks occupy in the public
esteem that his nomination for first place on the ticket was
earnestly pressed, and possibly by a majority of the Democratic
\'oters really desired. When, however, other considerations
prevailed, Mr. Hendricks, like a soldier under orders, cheer-
fully accepted the second place on the ticket, and contributed
greatly to the success of the campaign which resulted in the
election of Tildcn and Hendricks to the highest offices in the
gift of the people. It was during this great struggle that I
first made the personal acquaintance of the departed statesman,
and the friendship then commenced continued unbroken until
The impression made upon me by my first interview with
him was strengthened by continued intercourse. He was a
direct-minded and single-hearted man. He had no conceal-
ments and no reser\'e of confidence from those who were brought
into relations of intimacy v/itli him. His mind naturally found
its way to the elementary conditions of truth, and there were
no devious methods of thought or action by which the truth
thus found was ever obscured or per\^erted.
Starting thus on the fundamental basis of principle, his logic
was severe and irresistible. He never stated a proposition
which he did not justify by adequate fact and argument. His
unswerving fidelity to the Democratic party was due to his
absolute faith in its principles. He did not deny the patriotism
of his political adversaries, and he recognized their partial ac-
ceptance of the doctrines which from the time of Jefferson to
the era of the civil war had ruled the policy of the countr}'.
ADDJiESS OF MK. HEIVITT, 01- NEW \OKK. q-j
But in one respect he thought there was a fundamental dis-
tinction. He did not regard the Republican creed as calculated
to secure equal rights to all men. Hence he was always firm
in his adherence to the Democratic party, because he believed
that the welfare of the people could only be secured by the
fullest recognition of its principles. He was thus necessarily
a partisan, but alwa5'S sincere, always maul}-, always truthful.
This sincerity of character was best understood where he was
best known, in his own State of Indiana, which delighted to
honor him with its highest rewards, and twice cast its electoral
vote for him when any other man would have lost the State.
In 1880 the experiment was tried, and Indiana gave its vote to
the Republican candidates. In 1884 my belief is that his nom-
ination secured the success of the Democratic ticket. It pre-
sented an issue addressed to the conscience of the people, and in
the State of New York especially was so acceptable to a portion
of the party, otherwise dissatisfied, that personal grievances were
to a large extent swallowed up and postponed to the larger
duty of justice to the man in whose person the will of the
people had once been nullified. I do not think that I overesti-
mate the value of this feeling of loyalty to Mr. Hendricks
both in New Ydrk and in Indiana, and but for its existence I
am quite clear that no accession of independent voters could
have neutralized the strong current of feeling among a portion
of the Democratic voters for the candidates of the other party.
This feeling of loyalty was largely due to the disinterested
and patriotic course of Mr. Hendricks during the agitation
which followed the election of 1876. It was not his business
then to lead the party, but he was always ready to be consulted
and to give advice. He showed no reticence in council, and no
lack of confidence in the men who were intrusted with the lead-
ership of the party. He concurred cheerfully in the conclu-
S. Mis. 120 7
98 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
sions at which they arrived, and he did not put or keep himself
in the position of approving their action if it should succeed or
of disavowing it if it should fail. Neither when an adverse
result was reached did he express any vain regrets as to his
hard fortune, and he never called in question the courage and
patriotism of the Congressional representatives of a majority of
the people in the decision of one of the gravest problems ever
encountered in the political history of the world. On the con-
trarj', he recognized to the fullest extent the untiring diligence,
the unshaken fidelity, the true wisdom of the Democratic ma-
jorit)- who passed the measure of settlement by which peace and
order were secured to the nation at the cost only of a temporary
delay in the transfer of the administration to Democratic con-
trol. It was thus that Mr. Hexdricks gained the respect of
the nation and insured his place in history as a statesman and a
I have said that Mr. Hendricks was necessarily a partisan,
but I have endeavored to show that his partisanship was never
exerted at the expense of his patriotism. I have been moved>
to this statement because I have observed a disposition in some
quarters to exaggerate and extenuate his partisan feelings.
There is no reason for any apology or explanation so far as his
views in regard to appointments to public office are concerned.
These views coincided with the opinions expressed by Washing-
ton and Jefferson, and were once at least clearly defined. I
quote from his letter of acceptance of the Democratic nomina-
tion in 1876, in which he said :
In the reform of our civil service I most heartily indorse that section of the platform
which declares that the civil service ought not to be "subject to change at every elec-
tion," and that it ought not to be made "the brief reward of party zeal, but ought to be
awarded for proved competency and held for fidelity in the public service." I hope
never again to see the cruel and remorseless proscription for political opinion.^ which
has disgraced the administration for the last eight years. Bad as the civil service now
ADDRESS OF MR. HEWITT, OF NEW YORK. 99
is, as all know, it has some men of tried integrity and personal ability. Such men, and
such men only, should be retained in office ; but no man should be retained, on any
consideration, who has prostituted his office to the purposes of partisan intimidation or
compulsion or who has furnished money to corrupt the elections. This is done and
has been done in almost every county in the land. It is a blight upon the morals of the
country and ought to be reformed.
I hold this to be the true doctrine in regard to appointments
to office, and if it has been violated I am not aware that Mr.
Hendricks ever uttered a word or did an act which attaches
the responsibility of its violation to his memory.
I have spoken of the simplicity of Mr. Hendricks's charac-
ter. But with it went, as is always the case with noble natures,
the calm dignity of conscious intellectual power and controlling
moral force. It was my privilege in 1877 to introduce Mr.
Hendricks into a circle representative of the culture, the genius,
the intelligence, and the rank of Great Britain. There were
present statesmen, authors, cabinet ministers, members of the
aristocracy and of the royal family, between whom the inter-
course was as delightful as it was unconstrained. Mr. Hen-
dricks, fresh from the great contest from which he had emerged
as a victor without the fruits of victory, was naturally an object
of great interest, and was surrounded by a circle of intelligent
men and charming women. His bearing was that of a man who
had passed his life in courts, and his republican manners were
marked by natural tact and graceful courtesy. He was the equal
of the first gentleman of the land in dignity, and the peer of
the greatest statesman present in intellect and conversation. It
was on this occasion that I heard him appro .e and defend the
wisdom of the Electoral Commission which had awarded the
Vice-Presidency to his opponent. Salus populi. suprema lex
was quoted as the final principle upon which public action is
to be based, and of his adherence to this doctrine the whole life
and career of Mr. Hendricks is a convincing proof.
lOO LIFE AND CHAKACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
For him the conflict of life is past with honor. He has fought
the good fight. For us his example remains, urging us to be,
as he was, diligent in the public business, careful in judgment,
faithful in action, and, above all, patriotic in the discharge of
the gravest duties which have ever fallen to the lot of men, in
that we represent the idea of self-government, upon the success-
ful issue of which will depend largely the welfare of mankind.
Toward the final consummation for which we strive Thojias
A. Hendricks contributed in his day and generation his full
share of labor and of achievement, and as a man of the people
he will not be forgotten by the people in whose service he lived
Address of Mr. Browne, of Indiana.
Mr. Speaker, history repeats itself. Not a month passes but
the sad tidings come to us that a notable man has fallen. It
was but yesterday that Thomas A. Hendricks was with us ;
to-day he is gone —
To solve the mightiest mystery of all.
To-day his associates in public life pause in the shadow of the
national bereavement to speak of his public services and his per-
sonal virtues. He of whom we speak has gone where earthh-
honors and mortal eulogies are as empt>' sounds, but the homage
we pay the dead softens the asperities of partisan life and incites
a virtuous emulation; "it exerts a hannonizing influence on
the universal heart, and promotes the formation of a true nation-
ality." Standing far from him in party politics, diflfering from
him on almost every question of public policy, antagonizing
him, often warmly, and perhaps bitterly, in partisan controversy,
I acknowledge his great talents and pay a sincere tribute to the
integrit}' of his public and the blamelessness of his private life.
ADDRESS OF MR. BROWNE, OF INDIANA. lOI
His public record belongs to the country ; it will be judged
in the tribunal of public opinion. As in the case of others who
were prominently identified with that most tempestuous epoch
in our national history', many will approve, many condemn it.
We always judge our adversaries from our point of view, aud
take it ill if they discard our ideas and act and speak according
to their own. To do even and exact justice we should view
them not from our position, but from theirs.
In passing upon the opinions and actions of those who have
thwarted our purposes and sharply criticised our most cherished
convictions we should remember "that he who is most charita-
ble in judgment is generally the least unjust."
In life, in the excitements and bustle of our active and pro-
gressive life, in the scramble for place, because of our ambitious
jealousy for preferment, blinded by our selfishness, we withhold
from the living what is justly theirs ; but when we stand in the
presence of the dead it is creditable to our common humanity
that the generous impulses of our nature come to the front and
rebuke the unreasoning prejudice which denies sincerity of
conviction and honesty of purpose to those who refuse to in-
dorse our opinions or accept our policy.
Mr. Hendricks was not only a most distinguished citizen,
but was the second officer of a great Republic. A position so
exalted, so honorable, would not have been bestowed by the
voluntary suflfrages of the people had he not impressed himself
upon the public thought and won a place in the popular heart.
Personal worth and great abilities only could have secured this
high evidence of a people's confidence.
A tall man was he among the people, conspicuous for his abilities. A strong man
by the power of his eloquence and the breadth of his acquirements, he won his way in
the ranks of his party to near its leadership.
I02 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
If not the leader of his party in his vState, Mr. Hendricks
was a force that commanded its supremest respect. He won
this distinction by his character, his genius, his personal mag-
netism. His party gave him its undivided allegiance and pro-
moted with undeviating zeal his ever>' ambition. In his can-
vasses for governor, Senator, President, he had no rival in the
ranks of the Indiana Democracy. He was, without challenge,
its chief representative. If he did not formulate its policy, he
accepted it as the true faith ; if he did not go before, he kept
well abreast of the party alignment, went into the thickest of
the fight, congratulated his forces in victory, or in defeat cov-
ered their retreat. He was not a political boss. He com-
manded without using the tone of a master ; he governed
without whip or bastile ; he was king, but reigned by common
consent and made his subjects his peers. He managed the
methods and the language of politics with mar\'elous dexterity.
He was cautious, artful, plausible, and at all times perfectly
It was said :
There was something in the mere aspect of a large popular assembly which had for
him a special attraction. His manner in addreasing a mixed audience was peculiarly
his own — neither that of conversation nor oratory; something better suited than either
to his purpose. He was one of the most impressive and successful of public canvassers.
He did not disregard the unconsidered trifles of the campaign. There was an affluent
grace in his salutations which largely supplemented his argument. He was, moreover.
a man of normal action and opinion, following the ordinary bent and tenets of his party ;
no fanatic, extremist, or zealot upon any subject ; not such a one as the multitude often
follow, but a character smoothly rounded to completeness, without edges or angles, willi
no comers in his creed; yet he was, and continued to be, a popular favorite to the last.
Mr. Hendricks was not of the Mirabeau and Danton school
of orators — orators who inaugurate tumult and revolution. He
did not make harangues that "sent hands to the sword-hilt
and men to battle as to a banquet." Over his partA' adherents
ADDRESS OF MR. BROWNE, OF INDIANA.
he maintained an almost absolute mastery. For years his party
was out of power and he wholly without patronage, but he held
it to his fortunes, and there was no sign of revolt. His defeats
seemed to intensify its devotion and arouse it to greater effort.
A marked trait in Mr. Hendricks's mental equipment was
his conservatism. He was too much wedded to usage and tra-
dition to tolerate without challenge a departure from them. He
reverenced a long-established national policy, and thought to
touch it was to profane a sacred thing. He accepted the Con-
stitution as the earlier statesmen had fashioned it, and sought
to arrest the revolution that wrote in it, with the point of the
bayonet, a new charter of human rights. He would have re-
pressed the inspiration for liberty born of the shock of battle
to save to posterity without amendment the institutions of the
fathers. The Constitution as it was challenged his admiration,
and he maintained that to touch it was to endanger the public
safety. His views were overruled, and what resulted is history
irrevocable forever. Neither approval nor criticism will recast
it nor affect public or individual opinion. Conservatism as a
political force, however, has its uses. It calls a halt; it argues;
it demands a reason for every innovation upon existing condi-
tions. It checks imprudent zeal and gives time for cool delib-
eration. Only when it stands out against facts, against logic,
against public opinion, and against human progress is it cen-
Against the integrity of Mr. Hendricks asa public servant
no tongue has uttered a word. His fame as an honest man is
unsullied by even a suspicion. He was ever true to himself, to
his honor; no temptation beguiled to venality, and no dishonest
dollar touched the palm of his hand. In an age like ours, when
vice yields more revenue than virtue, when fortunes are so often
obtained without labor, and money, not merit, wins position
I04 X//'^' AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
and power, one who lives an honest and upright life is worthy
the admiration of mankind.
Monuments of marble or bronze should be erected in our public
places to keep the memory of such imperishable. Had Mr.
Hendricks devoted himself to the law and stood aloof from
the excitements and exactions of politics he would have been
among the foremost lawyers and advocates of this or any coun-
try. As it was, he stood in the foremost rank. He had many
natural advantages ; a voice of melody, a pleasing countenance,
a cultivated intelligence, a clear and easy elocution. There
was in his manner in court and before the jury that which was
captivating. When he spoke he had no recourse to rambling
epithets, stilted metaphor, or frenzied declamation. He wasted
no time in his exordiums, but grappled the point in controversy
without delay. His ideas were never trivial nor his language
inflated. His words were generally of simple Saxon, his logic
elevated and forcible ; there was neither extravagance of expres-
sion nor of gesticulation. Some of his contemporaries at the
bar were more picturesque and vehement, but none were more
graceful or adroit. He was at times touchingly eloquent, his
pathos moving the feelings and moistening the eye of the most
obdurate. He resented an assault upon the instant, and some-
times with marvelous bitterness, but he always maintained a
perfect mastery over his passions. He was both dignified and
courteous in his bearing, and commanded the most respectful
attention from all.
In the memorial of the bar his professional associates say :
Mr. Hendricks was throughout the whole period of his active life a lawyer, even in
his last days concerned in the conduct of causes. His entrance upon and employments
in public life were episodes, excursions, useful to himself and others, but did not divert
him from the beaten path of forensic labor. On the floor of the Senate, in the halls of
legislation, he sojourned — at the bar, in the courts, he dwelt.
ADDRESS OF MR. RANDALL, OF PENNSYLVANIA. \OK
As a citizen, neighbor, friend, he was unrivaled among men.
In these walks he was beloved by all. To his friends
He seemed the thing he was, and joined
Each office of the social hour
To noble manners, as the flower
And native growth of noble mind;
And thus he bore without abuse
The grand old name of gentleman.
The courtesies of his life were broad and generous. He was
always the polite and genial gentleman, kind and tolerant.
His private life deserved all admiration; tender and blameless
in his social relations — devoted to his friends, affectionate in
his family, simple, upright — these virtues are his eulogy, more
eloquent than tongue can utter.
To live in the hearts he left behind
Is not to die,
Mr. Hendricks has only gone nearer the Eternal Light — has
but crossed the lowlands to dwell on the mountain-top. But
he is dead, and, though ripe in years and honors, died all too
soon. Into the quiet of his home death entered unannounced,
and "his spirit drifted away on the bosom of that dark and
shadowy' river" that flows with resistless sweep into the shore-
Address of Mr. Randall, of Pennsylvania.
Mr. Speaker, the life of Thomas A. Hendricks was singu-
larly rounded and complete, and it is not surprising his death
excited lamentation general and sincere. We are advised by
divine inspiration that "no man liveth and no man dieth unto
himself" The incidents of this notable and honorable career,
the story of this leader of men, have been fully depicted by lov-
io6 lii-'l: and ciiaractkr of thomas a. hendrjcks.
ing friends, and the lesson of wisdom they teach has been elo-
quently enforced. The whole field has been covered, so that
even to a scrupulous and careful gleaner there is little to add.
One characteristic of Mr. Hendricks to me lent constant
beauty to his life. He was the embodiment of that old Latin
saying, "Mild in manner, resolute in conviction." His ways
were gentle and kind, but in a matter of right or wrong he was
fixed and immovable. No seductions could allure, no terrors
frighten him; to duty he was fidelity itself He was easy of
approach. He dwelt in greatest intimacy with his neighbors.
He knew the heart-beats of the j^eople. He could not be
deceived as to their wishes. To his earnest good-will they
responded with the most generous confidence. His gentleness
of manner won them to his presence, and then his learning,
firmness, honesty, fidelity, and logic bound them to him.
As he was greater than others individually by whom he was
surrounded, so, too, he was always stronger than any political
organization to which he was attached. He was a devoted stu-
dent of the principles of our republican Government. He an-
chored his hope in their preservation, in their pristine integrity.
He was the firm defender of our well-balanced powers and the
distribution of duties between State and General Government.
He believed that our liberties were secure only when all tend-
ency to parental government and toward centralization was
resisted and destroyed. Full scope 'was to be given for the reg-
ulation of mere local affairs to the home rule of State legisla-
tures, and the action of Congress was to be confined to legitimate
In his public conflicts he never lost the sweetness and gentle-
ness of his daily life. He was fixed as fate in his resolution, and
yet as affable and unruffled as if he sailed only over summer seas.
It is fitting and proper that the great Commonwealth of Penn-
ADDRESS OF MR. GEDDES, OF OHIO.
sylvania should pay the tribute of its affection to the memory
of Thomas A. Hendricks. He was the descendant of one of
her own children. His uncle, who was the sole Representative
from Indiana to Congress from 1816 to 1822, governor of that
State from 1822 to 1825, ^"^ from the latter year to 1837 its
United States Senator, was born in Western Pennsylvania, in
Westmoreland County, as likewise was the father of Thomas
A. Hendricks, who in after years, in addition to the honors
worn by his uncle, was elected to the Vice-Presidency of the
United States. They were Scotch-Irish pioneers, belonging to
a race of men of splendid plysical form, courage, and endurance,
and renowned for their mental vigor and strength of character.
,These pioneers were the ancestors of many distinguished fami-
lies of the South and West. Wherever these brave men fixed
their abode the land brought forth abundantly and the people
The late Vice-President died as he had lived, calmly and se-
Like a shadow thrown
Softly and sweetly from a passing cloud,
Death fell upon him.
Address of Mr. Geddes, of Ohio.
Mr. Speaker, the uppermost thought in my mind is the in-
scrutable Providence manifested in the death of our late Vice-
President at a time when in our worldly calculations we seemed
the least prepared for it. It again enforces the lesson so often
taught and so hard to learn, that
God moves in a mysterious way
His wonders to perform ;
He plants his footsteps in the sea
And rides upon the storm.
I08 LIFE AND CIIARAC7ER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
This thought of an overruling Providence in our national and
individual affairs can alone lead us to a true conception of our
duties and responsibilities. We will not forget that this same
Providence has directed, guided, and shaped the affairs of our
country' from the landing of the colonists at Plymouth and
Jamestown until the present hour. Idolized leaders of a party,
champions of constitutional liberty, lovers of our unexampled
form of government die and we feel the most painful depression.
When the death of Thomas A. Hendricks was announced the
calamity' was so great, and without warning, that the whole
country was filled with the most profound sorrow and teairs irre-
sistibly filled the eyes of the people.
Thomas A. Hendricks was bom in Ohio, but early in life,
when only six months old, his father crossed the State line and
gave him to Indiana. That State, therefore, formed the thea-
ter of his early struggles. There he engaged in laying the
foundation of that usefulness bounded by no State lines, and for
which the whole nation with one accord — all hearts and minds
united — give thanks to God and praise to our free institutions.
His life proved an eventful one. He was an able and accom-
plished lawyer, a statesman without spot or blemish, a Demo-
crat from the deepest convictions, and therefore a partisan, but
deserving and receiving the highest respect of the best men of
all political parties. I find one of the most concise, compre-
hensive, and just tributes to his character and memory in the
Franklin Jacksonian that I have noticed, as follows :
As a statesman he was the champion of the Constitution, the pioneer of peace, the
prince of patriots, of tried courage, lofty wisdom, broad intelligence, noble aspiration,
-and true manhood. He always planted the royal banner of pardon and love upon the
battlements of sectionalism or personal strife. As a personal friend we idolized him.
On his bosom radiated the star of honor, and to whose memory will be issued the highest
patent of nobility. His impress will be left upon the country so long as truth, courage,
and fidelity to principle shall find a home in the hearts and hopes of men.
ADDRESS OF MR. GEDDES, UF OHIO. \ 09
Mr. Speaker, these memorial exercises should not be regarded
as a waste of time or unprofitable, for they are in obedience to
the natural instinct of mankind and preserve a custom most
agreeable to the human heart and creditable to the sober judg-
ment of all. The most cultivated nations of the earth manifest
the tenderest regard for the great and good men called from
time to eternity.
It is an occasion when the purest emotions prevail and hearts
grow warm with the inspiration of the hour, and all recognizing
the solemnity and sacredness of the hour reverently recall the
life struggles and triumphs and recount some of the noble deeds
of the well-spent life of the illustrious man whose memory is so
dear to us.
It is to me a great privilege to join m\- countrymen heart to
heart on this memorial day, as I did on the daj'^ when the mortal
body of our distinguished American citizen was so tenderly and
lovingly consigned to the grave.
Glowing oratory, as enduring as the history of our country,
has already furnished the most feeling and impressive expres-
sions of merited laudation. Those who knew him best have
been peculiarly qualified to present his cliaracter in the most
appropriate language. History will " hereafter furnish pages
showing how his life was inseparably interwoven with the
preservation and perpetuity of our constitutional form of gov-
Histor}' informs us that when Xerxes stood in the presence
of an immense host of men he wept at the thought that within
a hundred years all of that immense mass of human beings
would be dead and moldering in the earth. He probabh- felt
that all of life consisted in worldly aspirations, hopes, triumphs,
wealth, and other temporal surroundings, and realized for the
I lO LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
moment their uncertainty and utter feebleness to satisfy the
cravings of the mind and heart.
How different with us. Under the benign influences of our
modem civilization and Christianity we look beyond and within
the frail tenement of clay — we look at more than the feeble,
dyiug body with its earthly surroundings — and see within the
body the soul, the real man. This thought on this occasion
should lead us to contemplate the characteristics of the life of
Governor Hendricks in his relations of husband, father, friend,
and Christian. Those who knew him best bear testimony to
the fact that he was not only great in all the walks of public
life, but he was greatest and grandest under his own roof-tree,
in his own home, surrounded by his own family and friends.
Here his pinity, his gentleness, kindness, and grandeur shone
forth so that no one could fail to appreciate them.
He lived and died a Christian. In the public mind there
exists a deep-seated conviction that two legitimate callings in
life furnish the most serious obstacles to the maintenance of a
pure, consistent Christian character. These are the legal pro-
fession, with its absorbing and exciting duties and its infinite
variety of temptations, and political life, where the heart is ex-
posed to all the evil influences known among men. Either
furnishes the severest trials and unerring tests of the soul's
fidelity to its highest mission.
Governor Hendricks boldly and manfully entered both fields
of labor and exposure, and throughout maintained a character
of the greatest degree of purity and Christian excellency at-
tainable on earth.
Having met and overcome all evil influences, he died with a
heart decked with Christian graces and ripe for a glorious im-
mortality. What an example for admiration and imitation !
Who would not lead such a life that he might die such a death?
ADDRESS OF MR. GEDDES, OF OHIO. l l i
Measuring time by years he lived three-score years and five,
nearly the average time granted to our race ; but the length of
life is best measured by its usefulness. He lives most who
thinks most, feels the noblest, and acts the best. Applying this
standard, my estimate of the man will not permit me to fix a
He was a stern, immovable friend of the people. He guarded
their interests with untiring vigilance. He mingled with them
familiarly, studying their wants and seeking to serve them.
His elevation to power and place never separated him from the
people. In all the struggles during his long public life affect-
ing the people — the weak, defenseless, and dependent — his sym-
pathies and pure judgment never failed to array him on their
side. He was most emphatically a man of the people, carefully
seeking their highest interests and at all times ready manfully
to maintain them. This secured for him the unfaltering friend-
ship and undying love of the people he served so well. It made
higi their leader in every contest. Their faith in him was un-
This was most strikingly displayed on the day when the last
sad tribute to his mortal remains occurred in the city where he
had lived. It was the most impressive outpouring of the sor-
rowing people that I ever beheld. Men, women, and children
•of all classes united in exhibiting the heartfelt sorrow that
Political differences were for a time buried and forgotten, and
all vied with each other to consecrate the day to the expression
of the unfeigned sorrow and pure love that filled every heart.
A noble specimen of our race, faithful to his friends, his coun-
try, and his God, had peacefully passed from labor to rest, and
no better eulogy could be pronounced, no monument or statue
of marble or bronze could equal in value or so charm a thought-
I I 2 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
ful person as that vast assembly of all classes and creeds with
bowed heads and sorrowing hearts, each feeling and acting as
if the dearest earthly object had been removed.
Address of Mr. Springer, of Illinois.
Mr. Speaker, already, in the Chamber at the other end of the
Capitol, have appropriate eulogies been pronounced upon the
life, character, and public services of Thomas A. Hendricks.
Distinguished Senators and statesmen have vied with each other
in extolling his virtues and commending his public services.
After all that has been said in the Senate heretofore and in
this House to-day it seems quite unnecessary to add anything
further. But I may be pardoned for detaining the House for a
few minutes longer in order to contribute my humble testimony
to his many noble qualities of head and heart.
His early life was spent on a farm; he learned to labor in his
youth. His parents settled in Indiana more than sixty years
ago. There were no railroads, telegraphs, or daily papers then.
The State was covered with almost impenetrable forests. The
red men still occupied their wigwams east of the Wabash.
The settlers of that day had to contend with all of those ad-
verse circumstances which attend the building of homes and
opening up of farms in the wilderness. The epoch in the
world's history from the birth to the death of Thomas A.
Hendricks is the most important of which there is any record.
The man who lived during these sixty-six years witnessed more
of human progress, more of improvement in the arts and sciences,
more discoveries of useful inventions, greater developments of
material resources, more rapid advances in civilization, in mor-
als, in education, in religion, than did the generations who lived
ADDRESS OF MR. SPRINGER, OF ILLINOIS.
through any half dozen centuries of prior history. During this
golden era of the world's greatest achievements Mr. Hendricks
was for more than forty }ears a conspicuous figure. He served
four 3'ears as a member of this House, four years as a Com-
missioner of the General Land Office, four years as governor of
the State of Indiana, and six years as United States Senator.
He received a large majority of the popular vote in 1876 for
Vice-President of the United States, and was elected to that
office in 1SS4 by the votes of the electoral college. In perform-
ing the duties of these important positions he illustrated, both
by precept and by practice, the maxim that "a public office is
a public trust."
While Commissioner of the General Land Office, the lands in
Iowa, Minnesota, Kansas, Nebraska, and other Western States
were being rapidly taken up as homesteads by the people.
About four hundred thousand land patents were issued during
his term of office, and twenty-two thousand contested land
cases were decided. He was equal to the demand upon his
time and strength. In public stations he was a faithful, pains-
taking worker. His time, his strength, and his great abilities
were given wholly to the duties of his office. No stain rests
upon his character; he was true to everj^ trust confided to him.
But he was not free. from personal attacks. In the midst of
heated political contests partisan feeling often runs so high that
the very best and purest of our statesmen are subjected to the
most outrageous abuse. Partisan malice and personal hatred
did not spare even so good a man as Thomas A. Hendricks.
But he was indifferent to such assaults. He believed that truth
would prevail in the end. He said on one occasion :
Because of a supreme indifference to false reports of a political nature concerning
myself in times past my friends no doubt have been greatly distressed. But —
S. Mis. 120 S
I 14 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
Said he —
an honest man was never more stupidly engrossed than when hunting down a lie, ex-
cept such a one as offends the moral and religious sentiment of a people. I shall refuse
to pay attention to any other.
He did not spend his time in answering false accusations. His
whole life, both public and private, attested the purity of his
motives and gave the lie to every personal attack. His parents
were strict Presbj-terians. They believed in God and the angels.
Their religion was of the practical kind, not a mere outward
manifestation. At meal-time it was his father's habit to direct
the conversation into a discussion of some religious topic. The
lessons of the Scripture were thus brought out and made appli-
cable to the every-day transactions of life. In this wa)' Mr.
Hendricks was impressed in his youth with the great truths of
the Bible. He learned the value and importance of leading an
upright life. The lessons which he thus learned were never
forgotten. He repaid the religious teachings of his parents
with filial affection, obedience, and acts of kindness. He helped
his mother in her household duties, as well as his father in the
severer labors of the field. His hands willingly performed the
lighter household duties that pertained to womanhood, and his
youthful feet went gladly out over the rough places in life to
save the strength of his beloved mother and to bear the burden
of her domestic care. In after years, in every time of need, he
helped his wife as he had helped his mother.
In his domestic relations he was peculiarly happy. The per-
fection of his wife's character seemed but the rounding out and
fulfilling of his own — "these twain were made one flesh."
It is to this perfect union that much of the success of his life
may be attributed. He not only found in her a companion, but
a counselor, a friend — one in whom he could confide, with whom
he could advise, and in whose rare intuitive perceptions he could
ADDRESS OF MR. SPRINGER, OF ILLINOIS. I I 5
often find the guidance that he sought. He loved her to- the
last with a steady, increasing devotion, the memor>' of which
must bring even into her now desolate life a halo of peace. In
the sanctity of his home-life was the fulfillment of every desired
Kind, charitable, humane, ever ready to listen to the humble
as to the powerful, and always bearing about with him the at-
tributes of a truly great soul, on one occasion, while he was
Senator, a poor friendless woman called upon him and told him
the story of her woe, the cause of her coming to Washington.
Her husband had been arrested as a spy and had been ordered
to be shot. She desired to see President Lincoln and make a
personal appeal to him to save her husband's life. She begged
Mr. Hendricks to go with her and secure an interview with
the President. The Senator yielded to her importunities and
took "the little woman," as he afterward called her, to the Ex-
ecutive Mansion. She told her simple story to the great and
kind-hearted Lincoln, assured him that her husband was inno-
cent of all intentional wrong, that his life was dearer to her
than all else in the world, and implored him to grant pardon
now, as he himself hoped for mercy and pardon in the last
day. The President's heart was moved, and his eyes were filled
with tears. The Senator even could not suppress his emotions.
Without the Executive Mansion, just across the Potomac, were
the contending armies of the great rebellion. Thunders of
columbiads could almost be heard in the city of Washington.
A million of men were in the field in deadly conflict. But the
Commander-in-Chief of our annies and a distinguished Senator,
since elected Vice-President of the United States, were so im-
bued with the finer instincts of our nature as to give heed even
in the midst of war to the plaintive story of a heart-stricken
wife pleading for the life of her husband. She did not plead
I 16 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
in vain, a pardon was immediately granted, and the two great
statesmen, President and Senator, and the little woman all wept
together for joy.
Mr. Hendricks's whole life abounds with acts of kindness,
of charity and friendly assistance. On one occasion a friend of
his had continued sickness in his family. Mr. Hendricks was
overwhelmed with professional and official duties and could not
give his personal attention to his friend's stricken family. But
he wrote a letter, unsolicited, inclosing his check for $250, stating
that was his contribution to aid in securing good nurses and med-
ical attendance, and regretting that he could not personally con-
tribute his own time and assistance. He was not only kind and
charitable but courteous and gentlemanly. He attracted per-
sonally those who were opposed to him politically. Under all
circumstances he bore himself with moderation, with dignity and
simplicity. He was easily approached, attractive in manners,
and considerate of the feelings of others.
As a popular speaker he had but few equals in this country.
He held his audiences in wrapt attention. His delivery and
voice were pleasing and attractive. He was capable of enlist-
ing the most enthusiastic applause or moving his audience to
tears. But he never failed to deeply impress the minds of his
hearers. To his persuasive eloquence and irresistible logic, his
upright life and noble example is attributable, more than to
other causes, the fact that Indiana adhered so steadily to the
political party to which he belonged.
Mr. Hendricks has built his own monument. Not the stately
shaft of granite that he erected in the cemetery at Indianapolis,
but one, imperishable as time, the foundation-stones of which
were laid in his youth while still imder the paternal roof
From his mother he learned those finer attributes of nature, his
unselfishness and his regard for the feelings and rights of others.
ADDRESS OF MR. LOIVRY, OF INDIANA. Wj
From his father he acquired the sturdier principles that charac-
terize a noble manhood. On these for a foundation he reared
the superstructure of a perfect Christian character, that will live
in the hearts of the American people long after the commemo-
rative shaft of granite shall have perished.
"Death lays his icy hands on kings"
SO must all die, sooner or later. Our Vice-President was no ex-
ception to the inexorable law. In his death the people mourned
the loss of a great and good man. Universal sorrow was mani-
fested on every hand. The highest honors were paid him. But
these honors and the people's sorrow cannot call him back to
earth again. He has passed from the busy and exciting scenes
of this life to the sweet repose of the blessed. But, to such as
lived as he lived, even in "the hour and article of death," in
the silent tomb, in the Day of Judgment, in the life to come,
all is well — all is well.
Address of Mr. Lowry, of Indiana.
Mr. Speaker, the mournful fact is at last fully realized.
Thomas A. Hendricks is forever lost to earth ! The lan-
guage of eulogy has never been more fittingly employed than
when used so considerately here and in the still higher council
chamber in the other end of this Capitol in extolling the life
and character of our deceased Vice-President. The circum-
stances surrounding his father's family and the more remarkable
incidents following upon his crossing the threshold of life ; the
story of his boyhood and youth ; the opening promise of man-
hood's early dawn ; the illustrious achievements of his maturcr
manhood in the forum, on the rostrum, and in these and other
legislative halls, and the high qualitieswhich adorned his execu-
I 1 8 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
tive career have all been admirably dwelt upon, not alone by
those who stood by his side and shared the vicissitudes of the
eventful scenes through which he passed, but by those also who
were wont to stand from him apart or were themselves con-
spicuous adversaries in the several arenas where his highest
honors were achieved and his brightest laurels won. In a
word, the full symmetry of his illustrious career, the beauty
and grandeur of his character, and the impressive lesson of his
great life have all been stamped here in words of enduring elo-
quence on the legislative annals of his country. . His exalted
virtues, patriotic services, and great deeds are engraved upon
the hearts of his countrymen. Memorials to perpetuate the
memor}' of his great excellences are eagerly being constructed
in tablets of bronze and monuments of enduring marble. What
more shall be said or done? At this point in these ceremonial
exercises for me to attempt more here would be superfluous.
Exemplar)' and generous citizen ! Patriotic public ser\'ant !
Best poised and greatest of contemporary Indianians ! Typical
American ! Wise and revered statesman ! Honored friend !
We can but lay our heart-warm tribute on thy tomb ! While
doing so, Mr. Speaker, in contemplation of such a life, and in
the presence of a whole nation's bereavement by such a death,
we may perchance recall the words of one who would fain have
found out the great mystery of human life :
We are bom, we laugh, we weep,
We love, we droop, we die;
Ah, wherefore do we laugh or weep?
Why do we live or die?
Who knows that secret deep?
Alas ! not I.
But those who most knew and best loved Thomas A. Hen-
DiaCKS cannot but cherish with intenser hope the general aspi-
ration of humanity that there is beyond the "secret deep" an
ADDRESS OF MR. OWEN, OF INDIANA. I 19
abode for those who here walk in virtue's path and love their
fellow men. That being so, the great soul which shone forth
in the placid dignity of his earthly presence is now beaming
with delight from happier spheres in contemplation of the mani-
festations here and everywhere presented of the existence of an
absolute conviction of the purity and excellence of his lifetime
purposes and of the results which his teachings aided so largely
to establish — the unification, prosperity, and happiness of his
Address of Mr. Owen, of Indiana.
Vice-President Hendricks has joined the "silent senate of
At his death a great sadness fell on many hearts, for he was
a man of the people. No citizen of the Republic had a larger
personal following. Thousands who differed from him felt that
in some way he was by their right hand. In that "habitation,
giddy and unsure, built upon the public mind," he lived for a
quarter of a century in undisturbed tenure. Our era has wit-
nessed an exciting struggle over governmental policy and
national principle, and in the "forefront of its every battle
could be seen his burnished mail ;" not that he sighed for the
gage of battle — his nature was the reverse ; not that he loved
disputation — his soul was for concord ; not that he was ambi-
tious of leadership — he preferred an undistinguished equality ;
but when he took a stand it was seen, and followers rallied to
it. His position became the center of desire.
Measured as an orator he was not among the greatest, nor as
a jurist, nor as a statesman. He was crowned by no dizzy
promontory of genius while the remainder of his nature was
shrunken in barrens. Creation had given his parts with even
I20 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
generosity. He was of a well-ordered growth, equally advanced
in all bearings, so symmetrical in his developments that we did
not catch his measurements until he had gone and we beheld
the vacancy. Taken as orator, jurist, leader, husband, man,
all and in all, his equal is rare.
What made him a leader I do not know. Wherein was his
strength I cannot answer. You can understand the shaft yon-
der, but who knows a mountain ? Our estimate of greatness is
on a temporary quality. It is something we can fathom. We
want dash; we must have it lurid. This is 'our ideal. Time
cools enthusiasm, admiration wanes, and our favorite hobbles
into oblivion, while we award the crown otherwhere. Washing-
ton, Jefferson, Lincoln, Grant, Cromwell, Hampden grew to be
towers among men ; but they are not our described heroes. In
their day men were persistently showing where they were fail-
ures and their evident lack of ability. It was only when they
achieved indestructible results that a niche was hewn for them
in the world's Westminster. Take any one of their parts and
it seems nowhere large or strong. It appears weak. It is weak
within itself But the strength is the way in which the tim-
bers are built into the tower. Mr. Hendricks's construction
was wrought in a manner which eludes description, but it singu-
larly fitted him for leadership in his party.
He met distinguished achievements on the forum. His speech
ran flexible as the brook. His uttered thoughts took the form
of such chaste simplicity you did not realize their vigor. He
was ornate only on requirement. His figures of speech were
emphasis, and his illustrations arguments. His epithet fell
like the Persian headsman's sword. His wit flashed like Ran-
dolph' s, but without venom. His logic was instinct with power,
and moved in ever-augmenting procession. Aroused, his form
straightened, grew stationary, the cheek pallid, and the stately
ADDRESS OF MR. GIVEN, OF INDIANA. 121
march of his eloquence moved with the majestj- of overwhchn-
ing storm. When it had passed he looked and acted as though
he half regretted the outburst. His voice was a mar\-elous in-
strument — a silver lute; its tone caught the ear of reason, and
through it there lurked a power that fondled the chords of the
ehart. He had a magnificent panoply for public address.
Mr. Hendricks became a leader in the stormy days of section-
alism and revolution. In the conflicts of that vengeful period
he was on the side of the weaker party. He was a famous tac-
tician; his resources made wondrous display in creating points
for attack and in sheltering the broken columns of retreat.
Always routed, but never dismayed; baffled, but not discour-
aged; overthrown, but not crushed; surpassed in strength, but
unsurpassed in zeal, his dream was the return of the Democracy
to power. His sword was never sheathed and knew no rust.
Toward this goal he traveled with the enthusiasm of a worshiper
With an eye that never sleeps,
And a wing that never tires ;
and when the restoration was accomplished his own aggrandize-
ment was, I think, the least of his gladness.
Mr. Hendricks wa# the embodiment of the doctrines and
principles of his party. The central theater of his operations
was his own State, a State famous for the bitterlffess of its polit-
ical animosities, naturally caused by its uncertain relations to
the prosecution of the war and legislation following. As the
foremost man of his party, he invited and received the fiercest
denunciations. A mere youth, by blood and choice I was op-
posed to him. With all the fierceness of a boy's patriotic ardor
I opposed his course, and ripening years have only added gravity
to my convictions. That he was sincere in his convictions no
one will ever question; that the general tenor of his convictions
122 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
upon the relations between the North and South was erroneous,
I think histor>' will fully establish.
I first saw him at one of his political meetings in the cam-
paign of 1866. After a time I got a little closer to the stand.
I liked to hear him talk; his familiar style, his quiet earnest-
ness, his touches of persuasion, his benevolent face, all won me,
and henceforth I became an admirer of the man.
The tw(3 great rival leaders are now in the sacred fraternity
of the tomb. Their outreaching plans soon left the confines of
their State and organized a national following. Two more di-
verse spirits never battled in government before: Morton and
Hendricks— Sir Richard and Sir Launcelot, the lion-hearted
and the fair knight. The one spoke to men with the majesty
of an autocrat; the other talked with men as a man with his
fellow. The one always commanded; the other always pleaded.
The one brooked no dissent in his following; the other let his
train camp wide apart. The one, like Cjesar, would bum eight
hundred cities, bathe his sword in a million lives, and wade
through blood to preserve the cause he championed; the other,
Coriolanus-like, seeing the carnage, the desolation, the anguish,
would sheathe his sword and turn away. The one could seize
the helm when the nation was strained in every fiber; the other
might take direction when peace hath her victories. They lie
within speaking distance. The vast energies of the one are
hushed; the broad powers of the other are pulseless. They
have grounded arms, and rest well in immortal renown.
As it fell upon him, the withering breath of time and care was
transformed in power, ripening his judgment and touching his
words with deeper wisdom. When he unshouldered the weight
of his great ambitions and lay down to rest thousands wept, for
they loved him; multitudes lost hope, for they had a friend in
him. As a leader, in anticipation of great political results, he
ADDRESS OF MR. OWEN, OF INDIANA. 123
had made promises. They were based on his views and convic-
tions. He strove to fulfill them, and I respected him for it.
Abraham Lincoln, discussing the slavery question, said :
I believe a man has a right to eat the bread earned by his own hand.
His home life was well known. A union had been formed
there which after nearly half a century must, I think, have cost
the sword of death an effort to sever. She was wife, he hus-
band; but they never ceased to be lovers, confidants, friends.
She was the watch-giiard ; he the mainstay. He was talked to
about the house ; she was consulted about the State. The lines
of bliss and furrows of care across both brows you could see had
been plowed by the same hand. The sun never shone on less
than two. The four walls of that home were a section of Para-
dise reset up on earth. Within was a shrine where sacrifice of
self was joy, obligations were opportunities, and duties were
•benedictions. That an angel's wing should bring a shadow to
such a home fills the beyond with a sigh and helpless agony
here. This side the Passion of Him who was Divine there is
nothing in earth or heaven so sacred as the bond of the hearth-
With increasing years he drew affectionately nearer her side.
On their last visit to Chicago, whence he went home ill, their
inseparability was commented upon. The way was growing
doubtful. The lines on his kindly face assumed a darker hue,
their voiceless eloquence pleading against separation. Not that
he feared death — he had no thought of death; it was nature's
premonition of the advancing fate which he obeyed but did not
After reaching home she cared for him, as was the wont of
each when the other was ill. Her ministrations were given
through the day, and toward evening, as he seemed "free at
I 24 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
last," she went down stairs to talk with a friend about the
charity society. He lay down on the bed; he was weary, and
Address of Mr. Hall, of lo-wa.
Mr. Speaker, I trust it may not be regarded as presumptuous
in one so strange and unfamiliar in these surroundings to add
a word of tribute to the memory of the distinguished man whose
death thus brings us to this pause and .serious contemplation.
As I listen in wrapt attention and with melancholy consola-
tion to the eulogies which have been pronounced, wherein
have been portrayed the character and public services of the
dead Vice-President, I have felt it were vain for me to attempt
to add to what has been said with such splendor of diction and
solemnity of thought. I am not a kinsman; why should I essay
to express that imspeakable sense of personal bereavement ? I
am not an Indianian, and cannot depict that deep and sudden
shock that tremored through the universal heart of that great
State and stopped the course of all its thought when late one
autumn evening the electric subtlety whispered in every home
and hamlet, "Hendricks is dead;" and the startled bells in
ever>' tower and belfry sent their lamentations out upon the
midnight air. While I may say I knew him, that acquaintance
was from afar; and I have no power to set before you his brill-
iant social qualities, the generality of his powers, his cherished
and unfading friendships, his genial, manly nature, his tender, al-
most feminine, refinement of sentiment, gs those can and do who,
from long and close intimacy, have been lured and bound within
the close meshes of such noble influences and relations.
But, sir, no great misfortune can befall the people of Indiana
that will not send a pang deep felt in Iowa. Remote, with
ADDRESS OF MR. HALL, OF lOlVA. 125
another great State lying between, yet my people find relation-
ship and sympathy with many a thread and clew running
myriad-form into all her sister States. The restless spirits of
the pioneer and constant intermigration, like weavers' shuttles,
have so wrought the warp and woof of our human fabric that
the golden threads of Indiana, as of all the States, reach con-
tinuous everj'where in Iowa and help enrich and adorn our life
and civilization there. Go where you will, there is no spot
where you will fail to find the translated lives and undying
memories of Indiana and of Indianians. To all these ' ' Hen-
dricks, of Indiana," was the great oak, taking deep root in the
soil of their native State, but whose lofty and ever upward
branches cast their lengthening shadows into Iowa. Some-
times, in the bitter political contests which, thank God, are
now believed to have passed — rolled together like scrolls never
to be opened again — when a small but faithful band of his po-
litical faith felt they needed help, he would come into what he
termed "The Great Prairie State, where republicanism came
first and lingers latest, ' ' and address our people. And then we
drew around him, attracted by our love and admiration for the
man and our sympathy in a common cause.
Those who loved the cognomen of ' ' Hoosier ' ' would come,
proud to hear and have others hear the good that could come out
of the good old "Hoosier State." Others, men of all afiilia-
tions, ca,me, for we knew great questions were to be discussed by
one ' ' who shed light upon all things touched by him, ' ' and
who, on all occasions, when most strong was also gentle and con-
siderate equally of those opposed as those united to him. No
one understood better than he that the door to the mind's recep-
tion of argument and reason must not be rudely assaulted and
burst asunder by taunt and epithet. And when the day was
done and the great gatherings had dissolved, each to his sepa-
I 26 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
rate home, the thought, the idea, the higher, purer nature of
manly persuasion were scattered like' seeds of a new species,
which were to grow and blossom, and to-day do grow and blos-
som in thousands of thoughtful, sorrowing homes and hearts as
silent testimonials of his force and goodness and the principles
with which he was identified. It was thus we saw and knew him,
and the invisible statue thus erected in our hearts will stand till
the hearts that knew him thus shall fail.
Not only this, sir; he belonged of right to all of us. Indiana
may claim to have been his home and to have nurtured and
cherished him. She may justly point with satisfaction to the
evidences of his filial gratitude and faithful handiwork to be
traced in all her framework of constitution, law, usages, and
institutions ; yet she must resign all special claim to his large
individuality and the legacy of bright example of manhood and
American character which he has left to us. These belong to all
of us, and cannot be confined to the narrow limits of his tomb
or his State. He studied the national structure and life and
drew deep inspiration from other States and all surroundings.
His stature, whether we regard him as the simple unpreten-
tious, approachable, citizen, the profound and erudite jurist, or
the broad and comprehensive statesman, had long since crossed
the imaginary lines of State divisions. He had taken the upward
steps of Congressman, governor. Senator, and Vice-President;
steps which, if slow and with many pauses, were always upward.
If in taking that last great p in 1876 he seemed to stumble
or fail, it may be doubted if unworthy hands had not tied treach-
erous grass across his path; but the rectification in 1884 of that
mistake or wrong restored him in his course and established
that there should be no regression in his career. In the last
great political convention which met to determine who should
be the choice of a great and anxious party for President he stood
ADDRESS OF MR. HALL, OF IOWA. 127
as one iu a central group of figures to be counted upon the
fingers of a single hand. Unostentatious and unassuming, he
was marked by all. The mention of his name thrilled thou-
sands of hearts into vociferous exultation, and when he did but
appear the sea of human faces shone in a desire to honor him,
and the vast audiences seemed to upheave as if from volcanic
emotion. And as it was there in that momentary focus of pop-
ular effort, so it was also far out in the calmer and more quiet
plains of thought of the general public. He was in the very
prime of manhood; not robust, but with faculties still expand-
ing to fill the measure of his life.
If, as has been said by his greatest eulogist, ' ' the very genius
of close contests and narrow margins in the ballot presided over
his political fortunes," yet under the influences of that very
genius he might worthily aspire to still greater honor. Close
contests test the virtue of men as well as strength of parties,
and by this test he still might face the east and look upon this
dome. Turn back the dial of time ; restore to its quiver that
Lethe-tipped arrow ; let him, with that serene composure and
quiet dignity so conspicuous in that scene of pomp and circum-
stance where even the people of a free Republic are prone to
put on the trappings of regal power and grandeur, as we beheld
the unjarring transition of our Government from the hands of
one Executive into those of another — let him come back again
into his appointed seat ; restore to him the life and opportunity
so suddenly extinguished and put out, from which a just ex-
pectation and the still fresh suSrages of his countrymen so
justly entitled him to anticipate the continuance of their great
favor and distinction, then cast the horoscope, and ask the fleet-
ing hours if it be ordered that the destiny of this remarkable
man must find its final consummation in the Vice- Presidential
I 28 J.fFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
He was of humble origin, and in his early life pursued those
simple paths that are open and common to all American youth
who choose to follow them. His life tells this great truth :
Great success and grandeur of character are not due to out-
bursts of individual power or the meteoric brilliancy of genius,
but are the results of diligent and faithful effort long continued,
pursued with the fixed and honorable purpose of doing all
things well and faithfully and neglecting none. As a lawyer
his great success and commanding position came to him only
after he had prepared the way, but he reached the height. His
services were sought for far and wide, and there was little of
the more important litigation, whether of titles, the bonded in-
debtedness of counties and municipalities, the obligations of
great corporations and the control of courts and States over
them in the surrounding States, or that involved grave consti-
tutional consideration, in which he was not retained. At the
bar he was known as the courteous and courtly lawyer, who
won his way to verdict and judgment upon the force of fact and
law, leaving with his antagonist only the sense of having lost,
but no feeling of bitterness or reproach. What would have
been the development of his character had his course led him
upon the bench it is difficult to declare ; but it has always
seemed that there was a field in which he would have become
Though a brave and fearless man, he shunned and shrank
from the turmoil and bitterness of fierce political contention.
When he entered those lists it was always at the behest and
under the requirement of his people rather than from inclina-
tion. He preferred the retired and quiet halls of justice, re-
mote from the great throbbing activities, where, unvexed by
passion and undisturbed by interest, the mind performs its
hiehest duties and exhibits its noblest faculties. Here, without
ADDRESS OF MR. HALL, OF IOWA. I 29
the stimulus of popular favor, unrewarded by results and in-
different to consequences, under the searching analysis of truth
and in accordance with the rules and methods of just, wise,
and prescribed laws, the rights of men and States are adjusted
and adjudicated. In my conception, here was the home of Mr.
Hendricks. No one will deny him that poise and complete-
ness of faculty, the evenness of mental structure and the self-
control that never lost its supremacy, which are the require-
ments for judicial function. He possessed that lofty sense of
fellowship and equal right, that profound appreciation of jus-
tice, a strength of comprehension and understanding combined
with a knowledge and a love of the law as a study and a science,
that, had they been developed by opportunity and occasion,
would have placed him beside the greatest judicial characters
in our own or English history.
As governor, Senator, or statesman I need not stop to dwell
upon his well-known character, for this history has been told
by those more familiar with it. It must be conceded him, even
by those disposed to take a more limited view of his public
career, that it was his misfortune, in a sense, to have lived upon
the adverse side of politics during a long and most unhappy
period in our history-. Questions arose, new and imexpected,
which had been anticipated neither by the founders of the Con-
stitution nor those who immediately succeeded them. Search
the opinions and the conduct of his contemporaries opposed to
him in political life, and there will be found unavoidable and
necessary hesitation, vacillation, and uncertainty. In those
days events led and men followed. Questions were settled by
the logic of circumstances before statesmen could give them
consideration. However much he might differ about methods,
he adhered to the traditions of the fathers in profound venera-
tion and devotion to the Constitution as the living conscience
S. Mis. 120 9
130 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
of the nation, and in all his instincts, acts, hopes, and aspira-
tions he was for the Union unbroken and indissoluble. Tender
as a child, grieved and auxious at the rage and violence of an
internecine and bloody struggle, while he was ready to catch at
any hopeful project that might terminate the strife, he never
doubted or despaired the restoration of the Union. To him
the integrity of the Union was as fixed and unassailable as the
firmament of God, and it needed only to assuage the passions
and restore the judgment of the warring people to have the
golden circle of the Union .shine out resplendent and entire.
He lived to look into the promised land and catch a glimse of
the restoration ; and it is a satisfaction to know that the glory
of that vision filled his last days with a serene peace, and what-
ever of untoward events the future may have in store they will
not disturb his final rest.
In all the varied positions to which he was assigned he per-
formed well his part in each ; his administration was not only
marked and notable in the full and perfect discharge of duty,
but his record is without spot or flaw — no doubt of his purity,
no suspicion of his high and scrupulous integrity ever lingered
for a moment.
But, sir, how he was loved by the people of his great and
noble State! In a long and eventful life he had been brought
into contact with all of them. Again and again had he come
into the midst of every locality and commtniity and talked
to them at the hustings. He was "ToM Hendricks" and
they were "the boys" — not in any wild or unworthy sense,
but as friends and equals. He was of them and for them ; list-
ened to them; helped them when he could; was just, courteous,
and true, until it came to be that when she needed aid Indiana
loved to lean upon his sure, great arm; and when "Tom Hen-
dricks" called on Indiana in an hour of need she rose "like
ADDRESS OF MR. HALL, OL lOlVA.
waves of ocean hungering for pasture." I need not recount the
many political contests which have agitated that great State to
illustrate the marvelous hold he had on the faith and affections
of her people. In the last great quadrennial struggle we of
Iowa watched the contest with an anxiety never to be forgotten.
Clinging to the same political faith after a quarter of a century
of obloquy and defeat, struggling like men who hope when there
is no hope, we knew our battle must be fought and won in other
States and by other hands than ours. We felt sure of New
York ; we needed Connecticut, but did not dwell upon her vote.
How was Indiana going, and where was Hendricks? With
an an.xiety which mere political contests ought not to force
upon a people, we beheld concentrated and converging upon
her every appliance and every influence from without. We
witnessed the invasion of her domain by the Plumed Knight
and his retainers, and the State practically taken possession of,
as Ohio had been the month before. But when that potent but
unnatural event had passed, we learned that it had only stimu-
lated into renewed and more tremendous exertion the spirit of
our party. We knew that Hendricks had again come forth
from self-retirement and had taken the old beaten path that lay
so near the homes and hearts of his fellow-citizens, and in the
old familiar, persuasive voice was summoning them for help
once more. ' ' I have pledged them the State. My name and
faith are involved. It is I that calls!"
We in Iowa heard the loud shout responsive to the call. At
night, by means of telegraph and press, we saw the distant
auroral light gleam upward from city, town, and hamlet, all
ablaze with torch and zeal. We knew the spirit of Hendricks
was abroad in Indiana, and that as sure as the sun should rise on
that eventful November day Indiana would be ours if human
power could make it so. And when at last the result was
132 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
known, who was there who did not comprehend that while Mr.
Hendricks was second on the ticket, yet it was his to con-
sider which were the higher honor and greater glory, to be or to
make the President. Sir, I allude to this scene and this re-
sult not to recall anything of political consideration, but to illus-
trate his strength in the love and affections of the people. For
when it is known that in this last fierce Presidential election,
out of their total voting population, 51 per cent, of California
remained at home and did not vote, 45 per cent, in Massachu-
setts, 22 per cent, of Illinois, 21 per cent, of New York and
Iowa, and so on, in Indiana all but 7 per cent, deposited their
ballots, the most full and complete vote every cast by any people
at any election — I say when this is known it can be understood
where was the pivotal point in the great contest and what influ-
ences controlled the result.
Mr. Speaker, when we consider hpw empty and tasteless are
the rewards of honor and the successes of ambition, how vain
are the consolations of wealth and power, how full the world is
of wreck and failure ; when we look down upon the plains of
human life and witness the restless, wearied struggle for exist-
ence, its discontent and misery, we are led to ask, where is there
refuge, what is happiness, and where may it be found? It is
not in the camp or court or busy marts, where want and penury
cry aloud. No, sir; it is only in the home — in that domestic
bliss, the only happiness that survived the fall. It arises from
that pure and lofty consecration of two lives — one man and one
woman — to each other. This is not a mere privilege, but a
necessity to our humanity. Without it life looses its zest, toil
its reward, and hope its realization. No one who, by precept
or example, imperils the high standard of this awful necessity
can be regarded as friend to his fellows or lover of his race.
In this direction, with what safety and satisfaction can we turn
ADDRESS OF MR. HALL, OF IOWA. 1 33
to Mr. Hendricks! The immaculate purity' of his private life
is the property and glory of the nation. We may not lift the vail
even in this hour of desolation and invade the sanctity' of that
blissful union between him and her who yet lingers here. We
know the golden cord is broken, but the casket yet retains its
treasure. Frail pitcher of beauty upon the head of purity,
borne safely by faithful feet to the journey's end through rough
and tempting paths ! Where can the image find pediment or
lodgment for contemplation and the perfection of our lives
save in the people's home and beside their hearths ? And there
the life and purity of this Indiana man has helped to elevate it.
But we hear it said, " He was a partisan." The consider-
ation of this criticism requires it not to be forgotten that it
comes at a time when new and modified views upon the subject
of partisanship are seeking supremacy in public thought. Does
it not have the vice of overlooking the fact that men who had
reached the age of Mr. Hendricks cannot readily divest them-
selves of the habits and modes of thought cultivated and ac-
quired in a long and active life?
Another important consideration must not be overlooked, the
most eventful portion of his life passed in a period of intense
partisanship. War engenders fierce passions and swift action
even in regions remote from the scenes of strife and ensanguined
fields. In those days the political contests of Indiana were no
child's play. Political supremacy in that State was relentless
and absolute. Right or wrong, for a time Indiana was a State
of "suspects" and political arrests. Once the great co-ordi-
nate branch of Government interfered, reaching its hand between
the edge of sword and bayonet to save those whom unjust judg-
ment had condemned to death. The bitterness of those days
lingered longer than it should, perhaps not with i\Ir. Hendricks,
but with the older men who had felt it most. They had waited
134 LIP^ ^^^ CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
tlirougli long years and sighed for the restoration of Democratic
power in the National Government. He had preached to them
the necessity for change, the opening of the books, and the
turning out of those who from long continuous lease of power
seemed to them to have acquired the features of insolence and
oppression. When at last, after weary waiting, the}- beheld the
great event at hand, they demanded the fulfillment. Indiffer-
ent himself, free from malice and void of covetousness, he yet
could not turn a deaf ear to those requirements of his followers
which he himself had originated. They could not appreciate
a change — a great overthrow of a political adversary which still
left it in power and position, and he could not resist the seem-
ing justice of his people's complaints. If he was a partisan, it
was on behalf of those who had inherited something of such
partisanship and who had followed wherever he led, and hon-
ored him with a constancy and faithfulness that now entitled
them to demand what neither worth nor honor could refuse.
When we recall what hand he had in making possible the new
conditions from which this criticism proceeds it may be safely
concluded that the judgment of posterity will be mild and
But, Mr. Speaker, why these ceremonies and eulogies?
Though they might gratify, they reach him not. He needs
them not. Are they not really for ourselves? Is it ordained
for all to die, and is there a great undertone, never ceasing,
which like solemn bell, when we listen, reminds us of mor-
tality? Alas ! the deep stream of human life pours on so con-
stant and imperceptible ! As generation after generation dis-
appears, the sullen roar of that broad tide where it pours itself
down the distant and precipitous cataract into the dark valley
of the shadow of death is so remote, inaudible, and low, we
live as if we were immortal and would never die. Onlv when
ADDRESS OF MR. HALL, OF IOWA.
the dreadful dart comes home, strikes with sudden clangor in
the circle of our household, or smites down some loft}- char-
acter intrenched in popular affection, are we startled out of our
deaf, absorbed preoccupation into the consciousness of our mor-
tality ; and then — then trembling and crouching, we wait ex-
pectant till the mourning days are past and it strikes still
nearer ; then fear and fright again. Fear and fright are the
instruments of safety. They forewarn and add speed to flight.
But there is no safet}-, no flight from the universal presence.
Only one refuge, one help — prepare, prepare ! It requires long
years of studious application and wide experience to prepare the
garment to appear in before that august tribunal whose seat is
near these precincts. The highest social life adorns itself with
nicest care, puts on its whitest, costliest raiment when it comes
before presidents and ministers of state ; but there is a tribunal,
a court, where none may enter unbidden and without prepara-
tion, not the preparation of an hour or week, snatched in weak-
ness and tremblings from long years of health and boastful
strength, but that which comes from long communion with the
divine attributes, a noble and willing submission to His visita-
tions and His judgments, the observance of His statutes, and a
faith that places all things in the hollow of His great hand.
Sir, there is every reason to believe that such was the perfect
and acceptable preparation of him whom we deplore ; such was
the garment of his life. His quiet Christian graces, rounding
out and completing the perfection of his character, present a
model of matchless manhood beyond the reach of pencil or
chisel. The world is better and purer that he lived. Here he
stops, but his work and example survive. These ceremonies
conclude the chapter of his life. His memory will linger fresh
and green in the hearts of the generation that knew him, but
136 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
when that has been gathered, like the sheaves, he will survive
only in the pages of history and the monuments erected to him.
He did not have, perhaps, the loftier and more impressive
powers of Webster, the commanding austerity and force of Clay,
or the persistent adaptation of Douglas. He was cast in a milder
and subtler mold. If he lacked some of the more rugged and
controlling features his outlines were softer and more even.
When those die who, like him, have been able, by force of
genius, worth, or circumstance, to lift themselves above the
common level of their fellows, their lives, as they recede into
the past and the world sweeps on, seem like great islands to
those who sail away at sea. The detail of event and circum-
stance soon wanes and fades into mere outline and dim contour.
There are the verdure, mountain, slope, and shore. Within
and beyond are lakes of silent contemplation not navigated by
shallops and smaller sail ; silent streams of purpose and intent
not charted on the maps of narrower minds; waters pure as
crystal dripping from rough ledges where the public never trod.
And so in this great life. There is no grand rugged height
lifted by power and violence, no gorge torn by selfishness and
distrust, but we behold it like some scene in the State he loved,
where the setting sun casts its last ra\s upon a level, undulat-
ing reach of land, gentle and subdued in outline, filled with the
scenes and sounds of homes, exhaustless in resources, where
peace and contentment dwell safe and secure even when dark-
ness mantles it and hides it from our eyes !
Mr. Speaker, Iowa mourns with Indiana, mourns with all her
We weep for Adonals ; he is dead.
ADDRESS OF MR. KLEINER, OF INDIANA. \ 3 7
Address of Mr. Kleiner, of Indiana.
Mr. Speaker, Thomas A. Hendricks, whose distinguished
public services we commemorate to-day, was a noted man in
the political arena while I was yet in my cradle. What I may
say of him will therefore add but little to what has already been
said to-day on this floor, for I shall devote the few moments
which I shall occupy to the events in his life which have passed
before my personal observation as an Indianian during the last
fifteen or twenty years, and which have long since become a
part of the political histor}' of our country.
Governor Hendricks, by which title he was familiarly known
to the later generation of Indianians, filled well every measure of
duty imposed upon him by the favor of his party. His counsel
and advice were eagerly sought by the old and yotmg. Wher-
ever he dared to lead his party was ever ready and willing to
follow. A victorious leader, either in peace or war, often se-
cures the plaudits of men because of his achievements over his
vanquished adversary. Not so with the late chieftain whose
loss we mourn. If he made any mistakes or had any faults his
followers did not stop to consider them or charitably overlooked
them, for he never appeared stronger than when he went down
to defeat, which was often within the last twenty-five years.
Each successive disaster, however, only added to the number of
his friends who would rally to his standard, eager to renew the
contest whenever or wherever he saw proper to give the word of
command. Thus, step by step, from the day Thomas A. Hen-
dricks was elected to the legislative assembly of Indiana,
thirty-eight years ago, to the day on which he closed his eyes
upon the world, he continued to grow in the afiections of the
people, and died mourned by them, if emblems of sorrow and
138 LIFE AA'D CHAHACrBK OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
public manifestation are considered as expressive of a country's
grief, one of our most useful, conspicuous, and illustrious cit-
No man who was ever called to public duty did it better,
whether as a legislator of his State in 1848 and 1849, ^"^ ^^^ ^
young member of her second constitutioual convention in 1S50;
whether as a member of Congress upon this floor from 1851 to
1855, or as a Senator in the north wing of this Capitol from 1863
to 1869; whether as Commissioner of the General Land Depirt-
ment of his Government, where his great judicial mind devel-
oped the rick traits of his character, or as chief executive ot
Indiana, which office since the admission of the State into the
Federal Union seventy years ago is rich in distinguished names
both in State and national annals; or whether we find him as
Vice-President of the Republic he served so long and well, and
withiu one round of the most exalted station known to the civ-
ilized world. In all these he did his duty and did it well.
I feel a just pride in having followed the destiny of this great
man and in having aided in my own humble way his well-
deserved promotions in his remarkable career. Few men in
this nation were so near the popular heart as he and fewer still
deserved to be.
But the pale rider selects his own time and place in which to
make his assault, and his incongruities are present here. In
the lifetime of our friend multitudes surrounded him, honored
in their ability to ser\-e him. Nothing that kind hearts could
suggest or willing hands could bestow was withheld from their
chieftain, and I believe I speak advisedly and truthfully when I
say that at no time in his long and useful career was he so near
the heart of his party as during the last months of his life, or
when under his own roof in the capital city of his own beloved
ADDRESS OF MR. KLIENER, OF INDIANA. 139
State lie bade farewell to the world — alone and unattended — in
the words, "At rest at last," and died alone.
Mr. Speaker, thoughtless critics have frequentl}' alluded to
his strong partisan convictions as indicative of illiberality and
contracted views. This I disclaim, for no man who had the
pleasure of his acquaintance even briefly but knew how tolerant
he was of the opinions of those who differed with him politi-
Governor Hendricks was a Democrat, a practical Democrat,
who believed in its principles and its traditions as embodied in
popular democratic government. He was proud of and ever
ready to defend his political creed, and this he did in the fore-
front of a score of political campaigns. He believed that those
of his political followers and companions who had gone down
to defeat with him in almost innumerable political reverses
during a quarter of a century should share the fruits of its vic-
tories in the hour of its triumph. When, therefore, in 1884
the Democratic party elected Cleveland and Hendricks as Presi-
dent and Vice-President of the United States he accepted the
verdict of the people as expressed at the polls to mean that his
partisan followers were best calculated to in-augurate the re-
forms which his party had promised.
For this reasonable and fair construction of the election he
was often derisively termed a ' ' partisan, " a " politician, ' ' and
even a ' ' spoilsman " by an unfriendly press and those of whom
it is no discourtesy to say were less sincere, less patriotic, and
less courageous than he. It was because he loved his party and
believed in its integrity that he stood committed to the idea
that its elevation meant burdens as well as honors and respon-
sibilities ; that those friendly to its perpetuation and future
success should administer its affairs, and in this view the ver-
dict of the future will fully sustain him.
I40 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
The prudent counselor is gone ; the incorruptible statesman
is no more among us ; but while honest convictions and upright
purposes endure, while faithful services to his country find a
responsive echo in honest hearts, Thomas A. Hendricks will
invoke in the coming generations emulators of his life and
Monuments of stone to commemorate his life will rise in the
land he loved, but the name and fame of Thomas A. Hen-
dricks will live enshrined in the hearts of his countrymen
long after these mere physical mementoes have crumbled into
I offer this as my humble tribute to the exalted virtues of an
able law^'er, an eminent statesman, a wise counselor, a patriotic
citizen, an honest man, and a kind personal friend.
Address of Mr. McAdoo, of New Jersey.
Mr. Speaker, I am impelled by the high esteem and admira-
tion in which the dead statesman was held in New Jersey to
submit these remarks.
There was perhaps no State in the Union, outside of Indiana,
in which Mr. Hendricks was more beloved by the people than
in the conservative State of New Jersey. To our people he was
the personification of rugged, earnest, honest democracy. In the
heat of political contest two names shone like guiding-stars to
the majority of her people — the names of Thomas A. Hendricks
and George B. McClellan. Illustrious soldier and upright states-
man, they sleep now, alas! among the great dead of the Re-
To his contemporaries in his own State, to her great Senator,
Daniel W. Voorhees, to her great citizen and Representative
on this floor, WiLUAM S. Holm an, and to others, his neigh-
ADDRESS OF MR. M<^ADOO, OF NEW JERSEY. 14I
bors and intimate friends, we can well intrust" the story of his
life. So eloquently, so graphically will they tell it that he is
indeed fortunate in having such survivors.
This great life just closed was not, like some new star, dis-
covered in a night. Silently, modestly, persistently it mounted
to its zenith. By neither craft, nor trick, nor affectation came
this great man to sit on the very pinnacle of the state. How
humbly he rose, how grandly and surely he mounted up, has
infinite lessons for us all. The people were not attracted to him
by any artificial glamour, by pomp and circumstance of war.
In an age of military heroes he never, even then, lost his place
in their hearts. This quiet, dignified, plain, unpretending cit-
izen excited in the hearts of his fellow-men all the enthusiasm
granted those heroic characters who blazed like meteors amid
the storm and wreck of devastating war.
Mr. Speaker, humanity is instinctively discerning as to the
character of those whom it trusts with great power. The peo-
ple knew the heart of Thomas Andrew Hendricks pulsated
in its every throb for human freedom, individual rights, and
self-government the world over. The great central pillar on
which the fabric of his character was reared was earnestness —
honest, unyielding earnestness. In an age of hypocrites and
shams, he stood forth an aggressively honest man. As a law-
yer, a statesman, a citizen, he spoke what he believed to be true.
He never temporized. I have said he was opposed to all hypoc-
risies in public and private life. How great was this cardinal
virtue we can judge when we recall the terrible picture of the
opposing vice drawn by the learned and saintly Jeremy Taylor
over a century ago. He says in one of his discourses:
There is an universal crust of hypocrisy that covers the face of the greatest part of
mankind. Their religion consists in forms and outsides, and serves reputation or a de-
sign, but does not serve God. Their promises are but fair language and the civilities
142 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
of piazzas or exchanges, and disband antl untie, like the air that beats upon their teeth,
when they speak the deUcious and hopeful words ; their oaths are snares to catch men
and make them confident ; their contracts are arts and stratagems to deceive, measured
by profit and possibility; and everything is lawful that is gainful; and their friendships
are trades of getting; and their kindness of watching a dying friend is but the office of
a vulture, the gaping for a legacy, the spoil of a carcass ; and their sicknesses are many
times policies of state, sometimes a design to show the riches of our bedchamber; and
their funeral tears are but the paranymphs and pious solicitors of a second bride.
He was an earnest partisan. He believed in the Democratic
part}' as embodying the true principles of republican govern-
ment. He stood by its organzation in defeat and victory. He
believed in its men as well as its measures. He used to speak
affectionately of "the boys," meaning the young men who were
so active in its campaigns, and the "boys" in return would have
made any sacrifice for him. Party contests on the great field
of Federal politics were to him no mimic strife. In the prog-
ress of the contest and in garnering the results he was in deadly
earnest — in all this, however, courteous, fair, honorable, can-
did, and gentlemanly, never blatant, boisterous, nor demagogic.
There were no neutral tints in his politics. Like all earnest
men he had strong opposition to contend with, but was withal
heartily respected by his opponents. He was strongly in favor
of purging the civil service of incompetent or dishonest ofiicers
and of those who had prostituted their offices for partisan pur-
poses, and of filling their places with honest and competent
men of his own political faith, who besides being such had ren-
dered honorable and efficient party service. For this a few
have caviled at him, but the great bulk of people in both par-
ties honored him for his adherence to this robust American idea,
so ably enunciated by Thomas Jefferson.
He was a broad-minded man, and never let his politics settle
on any one question to the exclusion of all others. He was by
some taunted with timidity, because he stubbornly refused to
ADVUESS OF MR. M^ADOO, OF NEW JERSEY. 143
merge himself in some so-called reform or theor)-. He met
questions as they arose, and never anticipated a movement be-
fore it showed signs of life in the great mass of the people. He
stood on the solid rock of conser^•ati^•e general statesmanship,
and did not need to climb up on some fantastic theory- to be
seen by the multitude. He had no faith in universal panaceas
by act of Congress, and had no time to waste on political nos-
trums. Faithful adherence to the Constitution was his remedy
for troublous questions.
Little men riding their little hobbies go on and off the stage,
until hobby and rider are both relegated to the musty obscurity
of the property-room, but the broad-minded, catholic, far-
visioned, prophetic statesman remains for all time. He was an
absolutely truthful man. He would have yielded up his life to
a mob before denying a tittle of his principles. In the stonny
times of civil war and sectional strife he stood as finn as a rock.
If he had been the only one left of its defenders he would have
stood beside the Constitution like some Titanic defender until
hewn in pieces by its enemies. And even as their spears pierced
him they would have rendered the homage of respectful admi-
ration. The people rallied to him because thej' knew he always
spoke the truth as he saw it. He never deceived them. To
millions of his countrymen his word was an inviolable bond.
His character as public man and private citizen was stainless.
In an age of corruption, sensation, and abuse, no scandal how-
ever faint shadowed his good name, no idle rumor soiled it with
polluted breath. What a lesson this well-rounded character is
to the young men of the Republic! Aggressive honesty and
granite-like integrity are indeed the only sure foundations of a
lasting reputation. There are no short and dishonest cuts to
enduring fame. They only live in the annals of a free people
who are superior to temptation and circumstance.
144 ^^^^ ^^'^ CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
Above all else Mr. Hendricks was a thorough American.
A Christian gentleman, he would have looked kingly in any
assembly in his regal simplicity. Kings, dukes, princes, court-
iers, were as all other men to him. He was no flunky. He did
not, like a certain genial poet, ' ' dearly love a lord. ' ' He never
tried to ingratiate himself with the debilitated aristocracy of
foreign countries. He talked and lived for America and Amer-
ican freemen, and had little time to prate nimbly and obsequi-
ously at banquets of "the mother country. " All Europe was
to him ' ' the mother country. ' ' All mankind, not the favored
few, were the objects of legislation and regard. He was no re-
specter of persons. "The rank is but the guinea's stamp,"
was his creed.
His heart went out to all peoples struggling for liberty and
national autonomy. Throughout his life he was the firm, true
friend of Ireland and the Irish people. One of his last public
acts, and while Vice-President, was to preside and speak at a"
monster meeting to aid the heroic struggle for self-government in
Ireland. He was beloved by all Irish-Americans. Their faith
in him and love for him was shown in many a crisis. He was
an enemy of tyranny and oppression and a friend of liberty
wherever the one reigned or the other struggled.
His domestic life was sweet and holy in its devotion and sim-
plicity. It were rude, if not profane, to intrude on the hallowed
domestic ground in which he trod through life with the noble
gentlewoman who now so deeply mourns his death. They were
truly mated and inseparable companions. Much of Mr. Hen-
dricks's success is due to this bereaved wife, to whom the sym-
pathy of millions of her countrj-men and women goes forth to-
Mr. Hendricks was fortunate in his ancestry. He had in
him a strain of the best blood on this continent. His Ulster
ADDRESS OF M.R. M'^ADOO, OF NEW JERSEY. 1 45
Irish ancestors were among the early settlers of Western Penn-
sj'lvania. Generally a mountain people, they followed in their
settlements along the great Appalachain range from Vennout,
through Pennsylvania, Virginia, Kentucky, North Carolina,
Tennessee, and down into Georgia. Natural-born republicans,
they sealed their devotion to American independence on many
a bloody field of revolutionary strife. In after years they pro-
duced such men as Richard Montgomery, Andrew Jackson,
George B. McClellan, Stonewall Jackson, and General J. E. B.
Stuart, James Buchanan, Jeremiah S. Black, General McCal-
mont, of Pennsylvania, and a brilliant host, no less distin-
guished. In the history of our country the names and actions
of this early immigration stand out in strong letters. Their
influence permeates our institutions and helped to found our
His body rests in Indiana soil, but his name and fame live
forever in the history of his country. A plain, unassuming,
honest man, and j^et an illustrious citizen and great leader of
the people. Prudent, yet bold, conservative, but convinced he
met every question as it arose with resolution, patriotism, and
understanding. A Christian, and a man of high honor and
strong faith, at the close of a useful and eventful life he died
as became him, peacefully. There can be but one regret con-
nected with his political career. Through the storm of con-
test and the gloom of defeat he had led his party for nearly a
quarter of a century, to die, like Moses on the heights of Nebo,
with the glorious vista of its future usefulness before him.
Truly, can we say of him :
Death makes no conquest of this conqueror;
For now he lives in fame though not in Ufe.
S. Mis. 120 10
146 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
Address of Mr. Holman, of Indiana.
Mr. Speaker, the death of Thomas A. Hendricks, Vice-Pres-
ident of the United States, aroused the sensibilities of the whole
American people, and called forth a universal expression of re-
gret and sorrow. The record of the life of an eminent citizen
is a priceless legacy to his country, and the two Houses of Con-
gress, in suspending for the time current afiairs and placing in
the archives of the nation a memorial of the public esteem in
which such a record is held, give just expression to the senti-
ments of the people they represent and do honor to the Republic.
Thomas A. Hendricks was a native of Muskingum County,
Ohio, born on the 7th of September, 1819, to which region his
father had emigrated from Pennsylvania. While he was still
but two or three years of age his father removed with his family
to Madison, Ind. , thence to a farm adjoining the then village of
Shelbyville, in Shelby County, Indiana, near the center of the
State, then an almost unbroken wilderness.
The Hendricks family has been more prominently identified
with the history of Indiana than any other. As early as tlie
year 1814 William Hendricks, uncle of the late Vice-President
of the United States, became a citizen of the now beautiful city
of Madison, on the Ohio River. He was the secretary of the
first constitutional convention of Indiana, and represented the
State four terms in the House and two terms in the Senate of
the United States with distinguished ability, and in the mean
time was for a full term governor of the State.
I knew the father of Thomas A. Hendricks, a portly,
dignified, unassuming gentleman, in faith a Presbyterian, wlio
took a lively interest in matters of education and in the chari-
table institutions in his section of country — a plain, upright.
ADDRESS OF MR. HOLM AN, OF INDIANA. 147
honest man, a friend to every ■work of benevolence and charity.
His circumstances were easy for that early period, when lands
were cheap. The material condition and social life of these
early pioneers were marked by general equality and republican
simplicity — none were rich and none poor. It was a region
gladdened with streams of sparkling water, of fertile land cov-
ered with primeval forests from which the Indian but a few
years before had sullenly turned his face to the west. These
rich lands invited emigrants from Virginia, Pennsylvania, Ken-
tucky, North Carolina, and other States, and soon became a
prosperous community — each citizen the sturdy master of a
Here Thomas A. Hendricks, in a happy rural home, grew
up to manhood with the advantages of early education common
to a prosperous pioneer settlement. He engaged in a regular
course of study at Hanover College, in Jefferson County, In-
diana, one of the earliest of the great institutions of learning
in the West, located on a magnificent elevation overlooking the
waters of the Ohio, an institution imder the auspices of the
Presbyterian Church, which has always maintained a high
standing, where many of the foremost men of Indiana have
been educated, and graduated in 1841.
After graduating he at once entered upon the study of the
law, and completed his studies in 1843 ^^ Chambersburg, Pa.,
and entered upon the practice at Shelbyville, Ind. Two years
later Mr. Hendricks was joined in marriage with Miss Eliza
C. Morgan, of Ohio, a lady of rare and excellent qualities of
mind and heart and of superior accomplishments, who became
the close and constant companion of his life.
Mr. Hendricks rose steadily, but not rapidly, in his profes-
sion. The old neighbors took a lively interest in his advance-
148 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
ment, and as early as 1848 he had acquired an honorable stand-
ing in the courts.
In that year he was elected a representative in the legislature
of Indiana, but I am not informed that in that service he added
materially to his reputation. In 1850 he was elected a delegate
to the constitutional convention of the State, which by a pre-
vious decision of the people was to convene at Indianapolis on
the 7th day of October of that j'ear. This convention presented
a grand opportunity for a young man eager to enter the public
service. It was as a member of this convention that Mr. Hen-
dricks entered upon his public career. It was composed of one
hundred and fifty delegates. Great importance was attached to
it by the people. The Democratic party was greatly in the
majority, but the Whigs were represented by an exceedingly
able body of statesmen. Nearly all the men of both of the old
parties in the State of established reputation were members —
Robert Dale Owen, Michael G. Bright, John Pettit, Democrats;
Governor David Wallace, James Rariden, Douglas McGuire,
Whigs, with many others of both parties equally distinguished
in national or State politics; while Thomas A. Hendricks,
Schuyler Colfax, William McKee Dunn, Alvin G. Hovey, and
others afterward distinguished in public life were of the younger
members of the convention and not then generally known
throughout the State.
In a convention so largely composed of old statesmen the
young men came slowly to the front. Mr. Hendricks sub-
mitted few propositions and seldom addressed the convention;
when he did it was on a question of recognized importance.
As a speaker he was pleasant yet diffident and hesitating, his
style clear and direct without any attempt at embellishment;
but there was in his manner and language an expression of
frankness, sincerity, and earnestness that always secured a re-
ADDRESS OF MR. HOLMAN, OF INDIANA. 1 49
spectful hearing. The strong, positive, and confident manner
and style habitual to him in later years was not displayed in
these earlier efforts.
The propositions he brought forward and the few addresses
he delivered were characterized by modesty and good judg-
ment, without the least attempt at display. But as a pleasant,
cheerful, courteous gentleman Mr. Hendricks then displayed
the excellent social qualities that so charmed his acquaintances
and friends through all the subsequent years of his life. These
qualities gathered friends around him, Whigs and Democrats
alike, and long before the labors of that convention were com-
pleted he was recognized by men of both parties as one of the
coming men of the State. He did not seem conscious of the
interest growing around him, and I will never forget his look
of pleased astonishment when, entering one evening the room
we occupied in common, I told him a leading citizen of his dis-
trict had just informed me he was to be the next candidate of
his party in that district for Congress.
I know nothing more in harmony with the character of Mr.
Hendricks as I knew it through a period of more than thirty-
five years than a brief eulogy delivered by him on the i8th day
of November, 1850, on the death of his venerable colleague in
that convention, Mr. Van Benthuysen. After an appropriate
reference to the history of his colleague, he concluded as
In all the relations of life he was a true man. As a member of the benevolent insti-
tutions of his country, in his political connections, as a citizen, and as a Christian, he
was faithful to all of his espousals. To his on'.er, his party, his country, and his faith,
in their prosperity and adversity, their bright day and cloudy day, he was the same tnie
brother, warm friend, zealous patriot, and unwearying Christian.
This proved to be an epitome of his own life. Shortly after
the close of that convention in 1851 he was nominated by his
political friends for Congress, and elected at the ensuing elec-
150 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
tion. The capital district of Indiana was then, as ever since,
noted for the number of its able men of both parties. The
great Democratic leaders of that day in that district were men
who had already acquired a national reputation — William J.
Brown and W. W. Wick, who long served in this House, and
others of recognized ability. The nomination of Mr. Hen-
dricks on that occasion was simply an expression of the confi-
dence of his political friends, which his prudent and manly
deportment in that convention had inspired. By a change in
the time of the Congressional election in Indiana, I\Ir. Hen-
dricks was re-elected to Congress in 1852, and two years later
was again nominated by his political friends with great una-
nimity. Here he encountered that remarkable political epi-
sode, that cyclone in politics as un-American as a sand-storm
in the Lybian desert, generally known as the American party.
Judging from the subsequent life of Mr. Hendricks, there was
not a man in America less likely to bend to that storm than
himself, and he and most of his political associates went down
before the blind but momentary fury of the blast.
Leaving Congress in 1855, without solicitation he was ap-
pointed by the President of the United States Commissioner of
the General Land Office, a bureau then as now of greater im-
portance, in view of the far-reaching interests involved, than
any other under the Federal Government. I do not claim that
during the period of his service in this House or while he per-
formed, as he did, with unwearying vigilance and admirable
judgment the duties of Commissioner of the General Land
Office he attracted in a large degree the attention of the people
of the United States, but as far as his reputation extended in
the fulfillment of the duties of those employments it was im-
pressed upon the public mind that he was a gentleman of excel-
lent judgment, conservative views, of great capacity in affairs,
ADDRESS OF MR. HOLMAN, OF INDIANA. I 5 I
and of unyielding integrity of purpose. These qualities nat-
urally arrested more attention in his own State than in the
countr}' at large.
In i860 he was nominated by his party for governor of Indi-
ana. Hon. Henry S. Lane, who had previously served in this
House and afterwards in the Senate, a distinguished Whig in
the old school of politics, a Republican in the new, was his
opponent. The canvass was of unusual interest, but did not
materially affect the result. The great underlying political
current of the period — antagonism to slavery — which set all
party schemes at defiance, mastered results. Mr. Hendricks
was defeated. In the political revolution of 1862 in Indiana he
became completely in his State the master of the situation, and
was elected to the Senate of the United States with the absolute
unanimity of his political friends, and took his seat in that body
on the 4th of March, 1863.
Mr. Hendricks's service in the Senate covers the most im-
portant period of the war and the period of reconstruction. It
was in this service he gained in a large degree the confidence
of his party in the nation that he had long possessed in his
State. He never at any moment from the first gun of the war
of the rebellion to the last faltered in his faith that the Union
of the States would be maintained. He never uttered a word
in justification or excuse of the fratricidal policy that sought to
destroy the Union. He never as Senator failed in his support
of the measures deemed necessar^^ by the administration of the
Government to restore and maintain the integrity of the Union.
Before the war he had stood up against the fierce political forces
which were inciting war between the two sections of the Union,
for he believed that the underlying cause of the impending con-
flict — African slaver)- — could be removed without an appeal to
arms. He deplored the ultimate results of intestine war, but I
152 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
am absolutely safe in asserting that neither as a citizen nor as a
Senator of the United States did Thomas A. Hendricks ever
utter one word or perform a single act that was not perfectly
loyal to the Union of the States, or as Senator hesitate to sup-
port any measure deemed necessary for its maintenance.-
The great speeches of Mr. Hendricks are to be found in the
debates in the Senate over the measures of reconstruction. I
will not attempt to recall them. They are a part of the history
of the country. They were the result of his mature convic-
tions. He held that the war of the rebellion had not dissolved
the Union or changed the relations of any of the States to the
Federal Government, or enlarged the powers of Congress. His
conduct and deportment during this period, and the ability he
displayed, challenged the respect of his political opponents, for
none doubted the sincerity and integrity of his motives.
His reputation rests safely on the powerful arguments he sub-
mitted against the measures of reconstruction from the stand
of his convictions of public duty.
We are, perhaps, too near the fierce fires of that conflict to
pronounce an impartial judgment on the political theories of
the period, especially as to the measures of reconstruction, but
of the high and patriotic motives that inspired the action of
Mr. Hendricks during that period his friends are confident no
question will be made when impartial history shall be written.
During the period of reconstruction and the impeachment of
President Johnson, Mr. Hendricks was recognized as the great-
est representative of his party in the Senate, and I am sure that
party is satisfied with the record he made.
While Mr. Hendricks was in the Senate the Presidential
contest of 1868 occurred. A widespread sentiment existed
among Democrats that Mr. Hendricks should be their candi-
date for the Presidency. There were strong indications of such
ADDRESS OF MR. HOLMAN, OF INDIANA. \ 53
a result. The underlying forces incident to a great convention
determined otherwise, but it is reasonably certain that Demo-
cratic opinion throughout the countr}'^ demanded the nomina-
tion of Mr. Hendricks for the Presidency by that convention.
It was, at least, not an improbable event. During that conven-
tion, and while the great issue was in suspense but promising
an early decision, I was walking with Mr. Hendricks in the
garden west of the Capitol. Messages came to him from a
friend in the convention in New York at short intervals. The
prospects, combinations, changes, speculations as to the result
were reported from hour to hour in endless succession, almost
bringing with them the throbbing tumult of the great assem-
blage. In the midst of all this Mr. Hendricks talked on in
his cheerful, pleasant way, unmoved by the stirring reports,
neither buoyant under seeming advantage nor despondent under
defeat. His deportment filled me with admiration, and I said
to myself this is the grandest character of them all. In 1868
he was again the candidate of his party for governor, but was
again defeated. It is interesting to note that every nomination
of Mr. Hendricks for office after 1851 was by the unanimous
action of his party and t\^t ever}' successive defeat secured to
him the higher confidence and greater devotion of his political
In 1872, after a contest of unexampled interest, he was elected
governor of Indiana and served the full term.
He was nominated greatly against his will, and finally, under
the earnest and persistent importunities of his political friends,
accepted the nomination of his party for Vice-President in 1876,
with Mr. Tilden as candidate for President. His acceptance of
this nomination more than any other act of his life exemplified
his devotion to his part}', the ultimate triumph of whose prin-
ciples he believed to be of the highest importance to the public
154 ^if^ '^^'J^ CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
safety. He did not wish the nomination for Vice-President.
He did not wish the office. A large body of his political and
personal friends were dissatisfied with the action of the conven-
tion, believing that he was the choice of his party for the Pres-
idency. Yet he accepted the nomination. I need not speak of
the result of that Presidential contest.
In 1884 Mr. Hendricks was nominated for Vice-President
at the Democratic national convention at Chicago after the
nomination of Mr. Cleveland for President. It is true to his-
tory to say that Mr. Hendricks wished at that time the renom-
ination of the old ticket of 1876 — Tilden and Hendricks. He
believed at the outset that Mr. Tilden would accept, if it was
tendered to him, the nomination for the Presidency. When
it was clear that Mr. Tilden would not, his personal relations
with that contest ceased. He did not expect the nomination
for President or desire the nomination for Vice-President. He
did not overlook or underestimate the strength of his friends in
all sections of the Union, but he understood fully the effect of
the position he assumed in 1880, when he peremptorily refused
in advance a nomination for the Vice- Presidency, and the antag-
onism in which it placed him with the great political forces of
the East. Hence, when even by an overmastering acclamation
he was called upon to accept the nomination for Vice-President,
he reluctantly yielded to the demand. He did not feel that entire
justice had been done to that great body of his party which had
for years desired his nomination for the Presidency. He felt
that great political forces were for the time unfriendly to the
nomination of a citizen to that high office in the section of the
Union of which he was the recognized representative. He had
indulged, upon just grounds and with ample reason, aspirations
to the greatest office in his country', but he now felt that fortune
had decided against him. But he had been too long a living
ADDRESS OF MR. HOLM AN, OF INDIANA. 155
force in the Democratic party to contemplate its future without
being identified with its fortunes. And more than this, while
the majorit}' of the delegates had decided that the interests of
the party demanded the nomination for the Presidency of a citi-
zen of a great Eastern State, yet the unexampled enthusiasm
displayed when he appeared in the convention, and when his
own name was finally and unexpectedly to him mentioned for
the second office, left no doubt of his strong hold on the confi-
dence and affections of his party. No human being could have
resisted such an ovation, and Grover Cleveland and Thomas
A. Hendricks were respectively elected President and Vice-
President of the United States.
And here I pause, except to consider the question that may be
suggested touching the place Thomas A. Hendricks ought to
occupy in history. It is said that he was never specially ident-
ified with any great and distinctive measure of public policy.
This is perhaps true as to the initiation of any such measure.
But is it true that the quality of greatness in an American
statesman can only arise incidentally from his association with
a measure of government of special importance or of great re-
sults? Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, James Madison, and
their associates, founders of this Republic, in the opinion of
their countrymen and in the current judgment of the world
stand alone in statemanship. Webster and Chief-Justice Mar-
shall will, for all time, be associated, but from different stand-
points, with the struggle which defined the powers and estab-
lished the supremacy of the Federal Union, and the local sov-
ereignty of the States. Mr. Monroe, with the American doc-
trine that European powers should not intervene in the political
affairs of this continent ; Mr. Douglas, with the masterly, yet
necessarily abortive, effort to postpone the issue of African
slavery, which irresistible forces were pressing upon the
I 56 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
countr}', and Mr. Lincoln, with the final abolition of African
slavery. These and, perhaps, a few other instances can be
named, since the adoption of the Federal Constitution, where,
in the public judgment, the reputation of a citizen, recognized
as one of the great men of the Republic, is indissolubly united
with a great public measure, yet in each instance the promi-
nent feature of public policy named was but an incident in the
record of the statesman. I have spoken only of statesmen, not
citizens who have become great by the successful command of
Successive generations of men, since the formation of this
Government, have remarked with astonishment its wonderful
adaptability alike to the small community for which it was
formed as to more and more enlarged and powerful communi-
ties, until it extends over and embraces a commonwealth which
in intelligence, numbers, tommunity of interest, prosperity,
and possessions stands the first on the globe. From this stand-
point statesmanship in the United States is to be considered,
for to the natural cause of fertile lands and salubrious climate,
combined with a system of government of unexampled good-
ness, the remarkable result must be attributed. To maintain
this system of government in its complete and perfect vigor
has been the highest duty of American statesmanship from the
Hence the study of American history reveals the fact that
comparatively few of the recognized great men of the Republic
have secured that exalted standing in the public judgment by
being specially identified with a great public measure, espe-
cially a measure proven great and valuable by the test of ex-
perience. Great and permanent measures of government are
seldom the result of the wisdom and foresight of a single states-
man. Consider the present monetary system of the United
ADDRESS OF MR. HOLMAN, OF lADIANA. I 5 7
States, so generally in its leading features satisfactory. No
statesman, living or dead, is specially in the public judgment
entitled to credit for it. It grew up and acquired form and
character through countless industrial, commercial, and polit-
ical forces. It is simply the outgrowth of the conflicts of opin-
ion in public and private affairs, and in the exigencies of
government, and the same is true of most of the great measures
Accepting, then, our system of government, as nearly a cent-
ury has demonstrated, as perfect as human wisdom could devise,
considering the value of fixed and permanent institutions and
the forces always at work, generally by indirection, to remold
and warp those institutions in the advancement of party or of
great special interests, it must be admitted that conser\'ative
forces, conservative statesmanship, are of the highest value.
Yet it is obvious that in a great government like ours, occupy-
ing a large space and a commanding position in the most favored
portion of the globe, powerful and not unfrequently conflicting
forces will arise which cannot be ignored — interests strong
enough to command a hearing. In this view I submit that a
broad and comprehensive conservatism in statesmanship that
takes all these forces as they arise into the account, and yet
maintains with unfaltering fortitude the essential principles
which underlie our system of government, the ancient land-
marks of our republican institutions, is the quality of states-
manship which ought to hold, under all conditions, in the
largest degree the confidence of the American people. A states-
man controlled by such views and possessed of great powers to
maintain and uphold them is sure to arrest the attention and
secure the confidence of his countrymen.
Such a statesman was Thomas A. Hendricks, and such was
his view of the duties of American statesmanship. He was not
158 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
in the ordinary sense of the term a reformer. He sought to
maintain in their severe simplicity the institutions of our Gov-
ernment. He took into the account always the greatness of his
country and sought to maintain its free institutions in their full
strength and vigor. He considered the general result, but was,
I think, at times too indifferent to the details of administra-
tion, which necessarily beget antagonisms. He indulged an
exalted pride in his country and its institutions, and viewed
with alarm and questioned with remorseless severity any meas-
ure of policy that from his standpoint imperiled or seemed to
imperil the safety of the landmarks set up by the fathers.
He was a disciple of Thomas Jefferson and an admirer of
James Madison, whom he greatly resembled in the general out-
lines of his character, scope of views of public measures, and
theories of government.
He Avas not overcautious in politics, but a man of high moral
courage. Let him who doubts this read the debates in the Sen-
ate in that grave and anxious period when the measures of re-
construction were under consideration; let him consider the
approval by Mr. Hendricks at a later period, as governor of
Indiana, of the temperance measure known as the Baxter law,
against which the fierce hostility of his political friends was
aroused, indignantly refusing at the time a word of apology or
I admit, for I am anxious to delineate his character with
truth, that he was a partisan in the sense of firm and unyield-
ing devotion to the fortunes of his party. From his early youth
to the close of his life he was a Democrat and only confident of
the future of his country in the supremacy in the public coun-
cils of Government of the views of constitutional power under
the Federal system taught by the early statesmen whose views
were generally accepted by the Democratic party. For forty-
ADDRESS OF MR. HOLMAN, OF INDIANA. \ 59
five years he adhered to the fortunes of that party without
"variableness or shadow of turning." He never for one mo-
ment lost faith in his party or in his own convictions of public
policy. But he was always courteous, just, and fair to his po-
litical adversaries. He was thoroughly practical in his politi-
cal views, and never lost sight of the main purpose and neces-
sity of political organizations as great and responsible agencies
for the administration of a Government of the people.
To the temporary and incidental questions which spring up
in periods of public disorder he attached no importance. As
long as the fundamental principles of his party were secure he
made no question on temporary abstractions. He had positive
convictions on the tariff prior to 1861. He believed that the
freedom of commerce would break down the barriers between
the nations, stimulate industry in all quarters of the globe, and
promote closer and more peaceful relations between all parts of
the human race ; but when a great public debt demanded great
revenues, he believed that the great question of tariff reform
had been postponed until the current ordinary expenses of Gov-
ernment should in the main make demands on the Treasury.
He believed that the monetary system of the Government, dis-
ordered by the exactions of war, could only be restored to its
normal condition and to its proper relations to other commer-
cial powers by the progress of current and natural events ; that
in such cases time, patience, and labor are the law-makers. I
mention these matters only to illustrate his thoroughly prac-
tical views of political questions.
On subjects which he believed for the time to be be3ond the
reach of practical and effective legislation Mr. Hendricks gen-
erally remained silent or gave a formal assent to the action of
his party, but refused to discuss them, as not of practical in-
terest ; hence some of his cotemporaries have inconsiderately
l60 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
charged him with a want of defined policy in public affairs.
But my answer is that whenever definite views are important
he expressed them, and when courage was demanded Thomas
A. Hendricks never hesitated even when his own party was
Mr. Hendricks was a laborious and patient student. He
had the scholarly attainments of a well-informed American
gentleman. He had mastered the leading measures of policy
and the great questions of constitutional power which had from
time to time arisen in the progress of our history. He under-
stood in all their details the current political questions of the
period ; yet I do not think that during the last few years he
liked the drudgery of study except where the labor was de-
manded by the occasion or was relieved by his intellectual en-
joyment of the subject. He was undoubtedly one of the greatest
lawyers this country has produced, notwithstanding the large
portion of his life devoted to public affairs. He was familiar
with the current literature of the age and greatly enjoyed the
works of an author whose style was elegant and vivacious and
at the same time instructive. He enjoyed society, and mingled
with remarkable ease and cordiality in the social circle and in
the midst of great bodies of men. He was fond of manly
amusements, especially in early life, but never under circum-
stances where the propriety of the presence of a gentleman
could be called in question.
When Mr. Hendricks first entered public life he did not give
special promise of becoming a great speaker, yet his manner
was attractive. His clear, kindly eye and the bright, frank, and
manly expression of his face won the confidence of his audience
in the beginning, and while in some degree hesitating in man-
ner, his clear, direct, and logical style and uniform good sense
commanded attention. As time advanced he became a great
ADDJtESS OF MR. HOLMAN, OF INDIANA. \ 6 1
master in the field of oratory. His manner became dignified, his
style elevated, polished, and commanding, and in later years it
can be claimed, without partiality, that in elevation of thought,
clearness of statement, and vigor of expression and in the magi-
cal powers that charm and convince an audience his speeches
compare well with those of the ablest statesmen the country has
Left to himself, he enjoyed above all else the congenial society
of his accomplished wife and the presence of his friends at his
own fireside. Here at home the man great in the rugged cur-
rent of business and affairs became still greater in the genial,
confiding, generous qualities of mind and heart that diffused
sunshine and gladness around him and made him the idol of his
friends. I recall how, in his manhood, with the filial affection
of a boy, he greeted his venerable father after a short separation,
and the anxious inquiries for the mother at home. At the time
I speak of he was still residing at his early home, but was long
detained by the convention I have mentioned at the State cap-
ital; and I shall never forget how joyfully he anticipated an
occasional visit from his young wife and little boy. The little
boy, a child of remarkable sprightliness, his only offspring, died
more than thirty years ago, yet seemed to live as a part of his
own life. We have seldom met during all these years when he
did not recall some childish remark of his little boy. His heart
was instantly touched by any instance of poverty or suffering,
and, without hesitation, was eager to furnish relief.
His devotion to his friends never faltered. The last words
he spoke to me in this Capitol, just before he left it never to
return, were of anxious solicitude for a friend. A little later,
in the capital of our State, at his own fireside, as I left him to
see him in this life no more, I shall never forget the earnest
pressure of his hand as he bade me farewell with the earnest
S. Mis. 120 11
1 62 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
hope that he should be able to aid in advancing the fortunes of
an old friend then present. This generous and always sincere
interest in his friends was a notable feature of his character.
In the relations that gather around the fireside of home, and
in the impulses and affections that live in the sanctuar\- of the
heart, this great strong man who stood up so sturdih' in the
rough struggles of men displayed the tenderness of a gentle
It was this part of the life of Mr. Hendricks that most
charmed those who knew him well and enjoyed his friendship.
His great abilities inspired their admiration, but the kindness
and generosity habitual to his life won their love and affection.
He accepted with a sturdy old-fashioned belief, without doubt
or hesitation, the Old Testament and the New. This unfalter-
ing faith unquestionably gave him that marked stability of
character so conspicuotis in his career. But, more than this,
early in life he had laid up in his heart, never to lose its power,
the sublime lesson of the sweetest words that ever fell on the
ear of mortal — the divine sentiment which even in the midst of
affliction and sorrow lights up the soul with rays of consolation
and hope — "Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain
Who shall say that in the last moment, when the celestial
messenger came to his peaceful home unannounced, and touched
the great human heart and bade it rest forever, the acts of
kindly beneficence, the sweet charities of a good life, were not
transformed into rays of living light, illuminating to the freed
spirit the pathway to the realm of the infinite and immortal !
He was a pure man, a bom gentleman. Thirty-five years
ago Mr. Hendricks and myself occupied a room in common at
our State capital for many months, and through all the succeed-
ing years up to the time of his death our relations were those
ADDRESS OF MR. HOLMAN, OF INDIANA. \ 63
of close and intimate friendship, and it affords me the highest
gratification to be able to say that through all those years I
never heard a word fall from his lips, in jest or otherwise, that
might not have been spoken, without a thought of offense, in
the presence of the purest woman.
It is hardly necessary to speak of the personal integrity of
such a man ; yet I will add that through all these years of pub-
lic employment, as member of the General Assembly of Indiana
and its constitutional convention, Representative in Congress,
Commissioner of the General Land Office, a great public trust,
Senator in the Senate of the United States, governor of Indiana,
Vice-President of the United States, embracing a period of un-
exampled bitterness in political contests, in all of which he was
engaged as an unyielding yet courteous partisan, I am not
aware that a single human being ever called his integrity in
Late in September last Mr. Hendricks left this capital with
a view of attending a reunion of the surviving members of the
constitutional convention of Indiana, who had separated thirty-
five years before, and of the first General Assembly held under
the provisions of the new constitution, which was charged with
the duty of carrj-ing into effect the refonns inaugurated by the
convention. The meeting was to be held on the 5th and 6th
of October. Hon. W. H. English, who was chief secretary of
the convention and speaker of that first General Assembly, had
taken great interest in making this reunion of early Indiana
legislators a memorable event. The admirable result of the
labor of those bodies, tested by thirty-five years of experience,
was the occasion of this reunion. On the 5th of October, when
the roll of one hundred and fifty members of the convention
was called, only thirty-three were found to be living. When
Mr. Hendricks appeared on the platform, on the 5th of Octo-
164 LIFE AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
ber, in the midst of these associates of his early public life, he
received a most cordial greeting. Republicans and Democrats
alike gathered around him; political antagonisms melted away
in the presence of generous friendship; moistened eyes told too
well how much stronger the affections of the heart are than the
ties of party or the intellectual convictions of a life. But it
was the subdued greeting of men looking backward to see what
had been accomplished — not forward in the mighty and myste-
rious energy of hope!
On that evening Mr. Hendricks addressed his old associ-
ates. He stood before his audience erect and stately as if in
his prime. His attitude and bearing were as composed and
self-reliant as in former years. His face bore in every linea-
ment the old cheerful, frank, kindly expression. The address
was an elegant and comprehensive statement of the great re-
forms which had been accomplished by the two bodies, the
surviving remnants of which were before him. He closed the
address with these words:
The Constitution then adopted stands almost without change or modification after
thirty-five years. Under its provisions the people have maintained local self govern-
ment in its highest excellence. In peace and in war it has guarded their rights, pro-
tected their interests, and promoted their welfare and prosperity.
I congratulate you who are living, and I honor the memory of the delegates who
are dead, for the perfect work done by the convention.
This reunion and the relation of Mr. Hendricks to it was
a pleasing incident well worthy of the closing period of a great
and good life, men of all parties, associates of his early man-
hood who saw the opening promise of his powers, laying aside
the animosities of party and meeting him in the embrace of
friendship, as if for a final parting.
Alas! how soon, in the midst of emblems of a nation's grief
and in the presence of the representatives of its great depart-
ments, he was laid away to his final rest, while a vast multitude
ADDRESS OF MR. HOLMAN, OF INDIANA. 165
of those wlio had known and loved him for so many years, un-
mindful that the dead statesman held the second ofEce in the
gift of the foremost nation of the globe, came with sad hearts to
drop a tear on the grave of a friend!
The reputation of Thomas A. Hendricks reposes in safety
on a sure foundation. A gentleman without blemish, a gener-
ous and true friend, an eminent lawyer, an accomplished orator,
a great statesman, a devoted friend to his country, a sincere
Christian, an honest man I
This is the epitaph which the great Commonwealth which
knew and loved him best rests assured will delineate his char-
acter on the record of imperishable history.
The resolutions submitted by Mr. Holman were then unan-
SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES
DEATH OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS
(VICE-PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES).
October Term, 1885.
In the Supreme Court of the United States,
Monday^ November ^o^ 188^.
Mr. Attorney-General Garland addressed the court as follows :
May it please the court: Since the adjournment of this court
on last Wednesday, the heart of the nation has been sorely
touched by the death of the Vice-President, Thomas A. Hen-
This is not a proper occasion to pronounce a eulogy upon
the useful life and splendid character of Mr. Hendricks, but
he has been so long conspicious in the public service, has filled
thoroughly and admirably so many places of high trust, includ-
ing the second in rank in the gift of the people, and he has
been a prominent member of this bar for so many years, I deem
it becoming to request the court to lay aside its docket and
pause before this sad event that now overshadows the whole
country, and out of respect for the memory of this "good and
l68 Z/^£ AND CHARACTER OF THOMAS A. HENDRICKS.
faithful servant" to cease its labors until after the last funeral
rites are performed on to-morrow, and I therefore suggest the
court do now adjourn until Tuesday next
The Chief Justice replied as follows :
The court heartily concurs in your remarks, Mr. Attorney-
General, and in the suggestion which you make. Justices
Matthews and Blatchford are now on their way to represent
the court at the funeral in Indianapolis to-morrow, and as a
further mark of respect to the memory of the deceased we will
now adjourn until Tuesday next.
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