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5 1ST Congress, 1 HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES. f Mis. Doc.
fst Session, f \ No. 262.
LIFE AND CHARACTER
RICH.\RD W. TOWNSHEND,
A REPRESEN'TATIVE FROM ILLINOIS,
DELIVERED IN IHE
House of Representatives and in the Senate,
FIFTY-FIRST CONGRESS. FIRST SESSION.
PUBLISHED BV ORDER OK CvlN'GRESS.
A\' .A. S H I N G T C) N :
GOVERNMENT PRINTING (1 !■■
]•■ 1 C E
Joint resolution to proride for printing the eulogies delivered in Congress
upon the late Richard W. To\vxshen"d.
Resoh'ed by the Senate iind House of Hepresetifatiren of the United
States of America in Congress ussembled. That there Ije printed of the
eulogies delivered in Congress upon the late Richard W. Townshend^
a Representative in tlie Fifty-first Congress from tlie State of Illinois,
twenty-five thousand copie';, of which six thousand copies shall be for
the use of the Senate and nineteen tliousand copies shall be for the use
of the House of Representatives : and that the Secretary of the Treasury
be, and he is hereby, directed to have printed a portrait of said Richard-
W. TowNSHEND to accompany said eulogies : and for the purpose of en-
graving and jjrinting said i)ortrait the sum of one thousand dollars, or so^
much thereof as may be necessary, is hereby appropriated out of any
money in the Ti-easury not otherwise appropriated. That of the quota to
the House of Representatives the Public Printer shall have fifty copies
bound in full morocco with gilt edges for the use of the widow of the
Approved. June .'). 1890.
P^UG 6 »yO«
PROCEEDINGS IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.
ANNOUNCEMENT OF DEATH.
December 18, 1889.
Mr. Williams, of Illinois. Mr. Speaker. I rise to. per-
form the sad duty of anuouncing to this House the death of
my distinguished friend and predecessor, Hon. Richard W.
TowNSHEND, late a Representative from the State of Illinois.
Mr. TowNSHEND died at the Riggs House, in this city, on
the 9th of March last. I now send to the desk resolutions I
desire adopted. At some future time I shall ask an oppor-
tunity for members to express their tribute of respect to the
memory of the deceased.
The Clerk read as follows:
Resolved, That this House has heard with profound sorrow the an-
nouncement of the death of Hon. Richard W. Townshend. late a Rep-
resentative from tlie State of Illinois.
That in the deatli of Mr.- Townshend the countiy lost a patriotic citi-
zen and the people a faithful public servant.
That the Clerk transmit a copy of these resolutions to the family of the
deceased and communicate the same to the Senate.
That as further mark of respect to the memory of the decea.sed the
House do now adjourn.
The Speaker. The Chair will put the question on the
The resolutions were unanimously adopted.
Address of Mr. IVilliams, of Illinois, on the
February 15, 1890.
Mr. Williams, of Illinois. Mr. Speaker, I desire to pre-
sent resolutions, which I send to the desk, and ask their
adoption at the conclusion of the ceremonies iixed for to-day.
The Clerk read as follows:
Resolved, Tliat the business of the House be now suspended, that a)ipro-
priate honors may be paid to the memory of Hon. Richard Wellington
TowNSHEND, late a Representative in Congress from the State oi IlUnois.
That in the deatii of Mr. Townshend his district and State lost an able
and faithful public servant and the country a legislator and statesman
who stood liigh in its councils.
That as a further mark of respect to the memory of the deceased, the
House, at the conclusion of these ceremonies, shall adjourn.
That the Clerk transmit a copy of these resolutions to the Senate.
ADDRESS OF MR. WILLIAMS, OF ILLINOIS.
Mr. Speaker: These resolutions are presented for the
consideration of this House, that we may pause in our legis-
lative proceedings and pay a proper tribute of respect to the
memory of the deceased. So frequently has the messenger
of death called for members of the present Congress that we
are more deeply than ever impressed with the thought that
the paths of glory lead but to the grave. Among those
thus summoned from their high positions of public trust
during this short period appears the illustrious name of my
worthy predecessor, Hon. Richard Wellington Town-
shend, late a distinguished Representative from the Nine-
Life and Character of Richard W. Townshend. 5
teentli district of Illinois. Mr. Townshend, after a brief
illness, died at the Riggs Honse in this city on the 9th of
March last, leaving his wife, a daughter, and a son to mourn
the irreparable loss.
Although a stranger upon this floor, I feel that I would be
untrue to the jjeople I have the honor to represent should
I fail to rise and record their high appreciation of Mr.
Townshend as their neighbor, their friend, and Represent-
ative in Congress. Mr. Townshend was born in Prince
George's County, Md., on the 30th of April, 1840, came to
the city of Washington at the age of ten years, and was
here educated at public and private schools. While serving
as a page in this House he made the acquaintance of Judge
Samiiel S. Marshall, then a prominent member of Congress
from the State of Illinois, and who afterward proved to be
a very dear and valuable friend to Mr. Townshend.
Judge Marshall, attracted by the ability and energy of
young Townshend, induced him to go to Illinois, which he
did in 185S. After having taught school for a short time he
studied law in the office of Judge Marshall, at McLeans-
borough, was admitted to the bar, and soon began its i)rac-
tice. From 1863 to 1808 he was clerk of the circuit court of
Hamilton County; from 1868 to 1873 he was prosecuting
attorney for the twelfth judicial circuit of Illinois, embracing
nine counties, and it was in this position that he became so
well and favorably known throughout his district. He was
at once recognized as an able lawyer, an effective advocate,
and fearless prosecutor. So successful was he in his con-
victions that the criminals arraigned in his courts always
dreaded his presence before the jury. In 1864, 1865, 1874,
and 1875, he was a member of the Democratic State central
In 1872 he was a delegate to the Democratic national con-
6 Address of Mr. Williams^ of Illinois, on the
ventiou at Baltimore. In 1876 Mr. Townshend was elected
to the Forty-fifth Congress as a Democrat by a plurality of
nearly 4,000 votes, notwithstanding the Democratic nominee
two years previous had been defeated by an independent
candidate. He was reelected to the Forty-sixth, Forty-
seventh. Forty-eighth, Forty-ninth. Fiftieth, and Fifty-
first Congresses. Thus did the page and student of Judge
Marshall soon become his worthy successor at this
Mr. Townshend brought to his duties in this House that
same integrity, energy, and courage so conspicuous in all
his official life. While others may have been more able and
prominent in the legislation of this body, none were more
honest, none were more industrious, none were more faith-
ful in the discharge of their duty as public servants than
But I leave it to those who were associated with him in
this Chamber to speak more fully of his services as a na-
tional legislator. As one fresh from his district, I wish to
assure his brothers in this House of the high regard in
which he was held by those people to whom he had given so
many years of useful service. They found in him many
noble attributes to admire and remember. In his great
kindness and gratitude to his constituents how often he
went oiitside the ordinary province of a Representative to
serve their private interest. I doubt that there was ever a
Representative in this Hall who within the same length of
time did more real, hard service for his constit^^ents than
Mr. Townshend. Nor do I believe that any member was
ever nearer the hearts of the people he represented. No
Representative had more of the confidence and love of the
people (jf his own Congressional district than Mr. Town-
shend. And as an evidence of such regard his constituents
Life and Character of Richard II '. Tcrwiisheiid. 7
kept him in Congress for over twelve years by almost a
xinanimous choice, and their deepest regret was that he could
not live to serve them longer in the place he had filled so
His death was such a sudden and unexpected shock to his
constituents that they scarcely yet realize that he is gone,
that they shall see his friendly and familiar face no more
forever. AVell do I remember that melancholy hour in
which his district received the sad news that Dick Town-
SHEND was dead; it brought a grief to every heart, a gloom
to every brow. His constituents in all parts of the district,
regardless of political sentiment, assembled in multitudes
to mourn the loss of a friend and Representative dear to them
all. And especially did the old soldiers weep in their deep
affliction, for they felt that in the death of Mr. Townshend
they had lost a true friend and tried champion, always re-
sponsive to their appeals, always liberal to their cause.
There was a common feeling throughout the district that
there was no one to take his jdace. The able and efficient
manner in which he had performed every duty in this high
office could only give additional embarrassment to his suc-
cessor in this new field of service.
Death is always an unwelcome messenger, but especially
when he calls from among us one so devoted to his family,
so attached to his friends, and so useful to his country.
How iinfortunate for his constituents that he should be so
suddenly taken from their necessities at the very zenith of
his usefulness, and with what significance can we say. in the
language of another —
We expect the sun to go down in the evening; we expect tlie flower to
wither in the fall; we expect the stream to be frozen in the winter; but
that the sun should go down at noon, that the flower should wither in
the summer, that the stream of life should be frozen before the chill of
old age had come upon it, this is sad.
8 Address of Mr. Williams, of Illinois, on the
But this is the case of our departed brother. At the merid-
iau of life, with a future full of ijromise, he was summoned
to his Master.
There is a lesson in the life of Mr. Townshend that ap-
peals to the ambitious young men of the country. At one
time a poor orphan page upon this floor, without any capital
save his young ambitious mind, westward he went his way
in search of wider fields for future glory, and by persistent
industry and a faithful adherence to jKiblic duty he soon
returned to this same Hall as one of its most useful mem-
bers. Let the pages of this House and the yoxmg men of
the countr}% with that same kind of pluck and energy, en-
deavor to follow so bright an example in whatever vocation
they may select, for —
The heights by great men reached and kept
Were not attained by sudden flight;
But they, wliile their companions slejDt,
Were toiUng upward in the night.
In the death of Mr. Townshend his family lost a devoted
husband and a loving father, whose pi'esence always made
home supremely happy; his neighbors, a kind and courteoits
friend, whose warm heart and cordial hand they were always
glad to meet; his district and State, an able and industrious
Representative, who was true to every trust.
Upon the loss of such a husband, such a father, and such
a friend, how sweet is the thought that there is no death.
The stars go down
To rise upon some fairer shore;
And bright in Heaven's jeweled crown
They sliine forever more.
Yes, Mr. Speaker, Mr. Townshend is gone; gone from
the glories of this life to the crowning glories of eternity;
gone from his seat in this Hall to a higher and happier seat
Life and Character of Richard IT. Tinciishcnd. 9
in tlie halls of immortality, but his memory still lives and
will continue to live in the hearts of the people he repre-
sented so long, so faithfully, and so well.
Address of Mr. Holman, of Indiana.
Mr. Speaker: I can not permit this occasion to pass with-
out adding my tribute of respect to the memory of Richard
W. TowNSHEND and expressing my great esteem for his
virtues and worth as a man and of the value of his services
as a Representative of the people. I was not a member of
this House during the first two terms of his service. I first
became personally acquainted with Mr. Townshend at the
ojjening of the Forty-seventh Congress, although I had
known him well before that time by reputation. During
the sessions of the Forty-eighth and Forty-ninth Congresses
we were associated together on the Committee on Appropri-
ations, and during this period I became not only intimate
with Mr. TowxsHEXD, but we became warmly attached to
each other, and it is a great i^leasure to me to remember
that that attachment and the kindly sentiment which ex-
isted between us continued uninterrupted during his life.
Mr. Townshend was in many respects a very remarkable
man. His energy, mental and physical, seemed inexhaust-
ible. He had at different times the control of very im-
portant bills under the jurisdiction of the Committee on
Appropriations, which, as chairman of subcommittees, he
managed on the floor of the House and on committees of
conference. He was painstaking, careful, and judicious in
the preparation of his bills. He became thoroughly con-
versant with all the details, and when he came upon the
10 Address of Mr. Ho/inan, of Indiana, on the
floor of the House, as gentlemeu who served with him will
remember, he was a complete master of the subjects pre-
sented and always prepared to defend every detail.
Mr. TowNSHEND, while one of the most affectionate men
I ever knew, a man of kindly impulses, affectionate and
generous nature, was at the same time exceedingly positive
in his convictions. In debate he never sought to placate his
adversary or avoid antagonisms; he neither gave nor sought
quarter. He presented his views forcibly and fearlessly,
never hesitating to express his convictions, no matter what
hostility they might provoke, and yet after a heated debate
he never hesitated, in a kindly spirit, to meet his opponent
and erase forever any ill-feeling the debate may have engen-
dered, an admirable quality alike of head and heart. As a
member of the Committee on Appropriations, and after-
wards as chairman of the Committee on Military Affairs of
this House, Mr. Townshend rendered very valuable serv-
ices to the country. He participated in debate upon nearly
all of the great questions which arose during the whole time
he was a member of the House.
He was a man of large views. His friends may claim for
him that he was possessed of real breadth of statesmanship.
And in evidence of this he was at an early hour an advo-
cate of the policy of uniting together in an American Zoll-
verein, an ''American commercial union," all the States on"
this continent from Behring Sea to the farthest extreme of
I believe he brought into Congress the first Avell defined
expression of such a policy in the form of a bill proposing a
congress of all the States of America, with a view of freer
commercial relations and breaking down all the barriers
and restrictions on trade and commerce between the nations
of this continent. This measure was pending in this House
Life and Cliaracter of Richard W. Townshend. 1 1
at the time the last Congress expired, t have before me the
bill introduced by him as far back as the 4th day of Jan-
uary, 1888, in which his views are carefully and fully ex-
pressed. It has been said that Mr. Clay during the period
of his public service suggested such a convention of repre-
sentatives of all the States of America. It is well knoAvn
that the present distinguished Secretary of State made a
similar suggestion dm-ing the adminisk-ation of Mr. Gar-
field; but so far as I am aware Mr. Townshend was the
first who brought it in a definite form into the Congress of
the United States. It would have been gratifying to him
and it would have been a source of gratification to his friends
had he lived to see the present meeting of a congress of the
American nations on the general plan that he suggested, but
not so comprehensive, not so broad, as that which he sought
to accomplish, though still in the same line as his policy
Mr. Townshend's death in the very vigor of manhood,
when his manly powers were just fully developed, was a very
sad event. It is imjiossible for us to understand the ways
of Pi-ovidence, but we must feel that the Being who guides
and directs the whole frame of nature cares for all of His
creatures and doeth all things well. We humbly bow to
the decrees of the all-wise and merciful Ruler. And yet the
providence by which, in the very vigor of manhood, the
very jaeriod of life of the greatest usefulness to his family,
his friends, and to his country, the hour of departure of our
friend came, is inscrutable to us; but I hope and believe the
hour will come when we shall all see that all of the affairs
of this world and of the universe are directed by an all-wise
and merciful Father.
Mr. Townshend's record in this House is honorable and
valuable, without a blemish, and it is pleasant to remember
12 Address of Mr. Spinola, of New York, on the
that it will endure on the records of Congress as long as our
race shall survive. Peace to his dust; honor to his memory.
ADDRESS OF Mr, SPINOLA, OF NEW YORK,
Mr. Speaker: Death, passing all barriers and scorning
all human resources, has entered the Hoiise of Representa-
tives and removed from its ranks one of the oldest in service
of us all.
Richard W. Townshend was born in Maryland, but
became a resident and Rejjreseutative from the State of
Illinois. He was preeminently and always a citizen of the
great Republic, and during twelve years of continuous serv-
ice illuminated the debates of this Hall and shared the
burdens of its committees with indefatigable zeal for the
He began his life (if it may be so described) where others
of this and the coordinate branch of Congress began theirs:
as a page in the Capitol.
His brightness, earnestness, and ability attracted the at-
tention of the Hon. S. S. Marshall, then a Representative
from a southern Illinois district; and seeing the capacities
of young Townshend he invited him to make his home in
the West. In the West Mr. Townshend studied law, and
speedily embarked in business entei'prises which identified
him with some of the largest operations in his section of the
State, [u those business enterjirises he met full measure of
.success; and liei'e, too, awaited him that greatest success
which can befall a man: he met a true woman, who became
his bride, and who survives him to-day, supported by her
children, the sorrowful witness of these obsequies.
For an instant I turn from the dead to the living, that I
Life and Character of Richard W. Townshend. 13
may record the gracious and fragi-ant act of Hon. Mr.
Williams, his successor on this floor. No more gracious per-
sonal act could have been done than when Mr. Townshend"s
successor, knowing the desire of his heart, appointed his son
to the Military Academy.
In the name of Mr. Townshexd's friends and his family;
in the name of the widow whose lot he has softened, I thank
his generous successor for his thoughtful act. Of such are
the beautiful deeds that soften sorrow, and make us proud
of our kind.
But from the pleasures of domestic life and from the en-
grossment of private business. Mr. Townshend turned with
natural aptitude to public affairs, and in the year 1876 was
elected a Representative from what is now the Nineteenth
district of his State. Himself a young man. he entered this
Hall when gigantic presences filled it and voices were heard
here that sounded to the remotest bounds of the nation.
Some of those strong men remain with us. some have joined
the silent majority, and others have been transferred to the
Senate Chamber. But, with and among all these. Town-
shend took part as the brave, bright man that he was, and
speedily won their confidence, affection, and regard.
One characteristic which was impressed upon all who met
Mr. Townshend was his indefatigable industry in his piib-
lic duties. I know of no man who so ceaselessly went to and
fro in the interests of his constituents or who so untiringly
labored for the good of those who had elected him; no man
bore more closely to heart the claims, the sorrows, and the
rights of his constituency. His life has been a complete
refutation of the idle statement that an American Congress-
man is a person of ease and luxuriousness.
Mr. Townshend's life was a never-ending round of toil ;
toil that met him when he went among his people; toil which
14 Address of Mr. Spiiiola, of New York., on the
accompanied him to Washiugtoii; toil that environed him
by day and by night. He listened with dutifnl regai-d both
to the plaintive cry of the solitary snppliant for justice and
to the solemn and imperious demand for recognition of the
great interests and issues of his times.
His was the typical life of the member of this House. At
his door in the morning stood clamorous need and claimed
his aid; through all the day it stalked by his side from De-
partment to Department, begrudging him the time he spent
in hasty meals, and at night, invading the precincts of his
home, it scourged him to his couch with its words of trouble
and fretful reproach.
To the multiplicity of such labors and cares — which have
aged and burdened many of us — is due his final taking off;
and in the prime of manhood he fell a sacrifice beneath the
burdens of his high office, as distinctly as though he had
perished upon the front line of battle.
Mr. Speaker, the same sacrifices are made to-day in the
Hall of this House. Men come here as did Mr. Townshend,
full of hope, broad aspirations, country-loving desires, and
of the noble ambition to stand well in the affections of their
countrymen. Around them gather ten thousand cares.
Righteous ambition is dimmed by the multitudinous demands
of exacting jjrivate interests, which will not be neglected or
deferred, and at the end of many careers that opened with
high and proud hopes, strengthened by ardent friends, full
of augury and kind omen, is a broken life and energies, ex-
haiisted by bearing petty burdens.
For this condition of affairs the Representatives must and
will provide efficient remedy, trusting to the great and
thoughtful citizens back of them for appreciative considera-
tion. And surely the 60,000,000 who constitute this greatest
of nations, a nation of boundless resources, whose Treasury
Life and Character of Ridiard W. Towiisliciid. 15
is overflowing with wetiltli and whose only dangers arise from
abundance, will not always deny to the public servants the
aid their offices imperatively demand.
But during his career and in the midst of his arduous and
exacting cares Mr. Townshend kept a steadfast eye upon
the larger interests of liis country. He helped to settle the
mighty issues that grew out of our troubles and war ; he
Iielped to frame the laws upon wliicli the Republic's spread-
ing domain stands ; and looked with a far-seeing eye to the
important future that was to give the opportunity for a
great continental union, where, unembarrassed, trade and
liberty of commerce might seek their higher development.
And so. for years, he devoted himself to a study of the rela-
tions existing between the United States and the other States
of this continent, bringing forward liill after bill and meas-
ure after measure tcj secure an American federation, the
result now happily within our attainment.
The record of Mr. Towxshend"s labors and his speeches
upon this subject have been indelibly carved upon the granite
tablet of our history, and. whoever may bear this subject
fill-ward to fruition, it will Ije found that the master hand of
the dead Rejjresentative worked upon its foundation and
helped to make it secure.
Personally I knew him from the opening of the Fiftieth
Congress. I fi)und iiim in every relationship, private or
public, a kindly, genial gentleman: glad to give me the re-
sult of his experience; glad to advise me when I should re-
quire it; glad to listen to me when I desired to speak. I
found him the counselor and friend, and always able and
sagacious. He welcomed me into these halls, did what he
could to make the path of legislation smooth for me, and
extended to me every courtesy and facility.
He whose past we review this day was devotedly attached
16 Address of Mr. Compion, of Maryland, 07i the
to the principles of his great party ; for them aiid it he
wrought ceaselessly, and, while we differ in our estimate of
those views, we all accord him a prominent place in their
Through the great organization he loved, he saw advanced
his country's glory and increasing fame; he was one of its
leaders and helped to create its jjower and extend its useful-
ness. Higher than party with him was his country, and he
loved the Union with a lover's love, and rejoiced in its growth
And now we leave him to his deep repose; no more an
actor in these scenes, he has joined the ranks of the immortal,
awaiting the reward of ttjil and thought and speech, in the
great hereafter, which is with God. The considerate judg-
ment of his peers and former associates assigns him a noble
place among the thousands who have here wrought with
singleness of purpose for the public good; in the memory
and affections of the people he served he will live while any
of this generation survive; from his place of rest he will
see that this patriotic devotion to the cause of his country and
his kind will be rewarded by the greatness of the one and
the continued regard of all.
Address of Mr. Compton, of Maryland,
Mr. Speaker: As the Representative of the Congressional
district and a resident of the county in which Richard
Wellington Townshend was born, I enter the list of those
who ijropose to do honor to his memory by these memorial
ceremonies, impelled by the obligations of a melancholy
duty, as well as by the impulses which the partiality of per-
sonal regard inspires. Maryland cherishes the memory of
Life and Character of Richard IT. Toivnshend. 17
her worthy sous with the temleruess and constancy of ma-
ternal love, and, as she points with the jjride of a Roman
mother to her precious jewels, in the Iouk roll of her cher-
ished ones she recognizes the name of liiui whose virtues
we commemorate to-day.
In the bright morning of life he left the State of his
nativity, never more to return to it as a resident; but, sir,
before doing so he had imbibed from the moral and social
atmosphere which surrounded liiui at the place of his birth
the impress of precepts and tlie influence of the example of
men who measured their conduct by a code of ethics as high
and correct as any probably that ever obtained in any com-
munity in this countrJ^
I venture in this presence the assertion that in no section
of the original thirteen States was the standard of manhood
and the touchstone of men's conduct more elevated and
exacting than in that section of tlie State of Maryland in
which his life began.
Among tliose men, to falter where courage was required
was to forfeit the resjiect of his fellows, high and low ; to
equivocate was to sacrifice the esteem of liis neighbors: to
seek to prosjoer by the arts of modern (so-called) smartness
was to incur the condemnation of all whose good opinion
was worth possessing; to take advantage of the weak or im-
pose upon the defenseless was to provoke the contempt of
all. These were with them as the laws of the Medes and
Persians, imperishable and never to be violated with impunity.
It was in this school that our departed friend learned tlie
first and most enduring lessons of liis life, and their control-
ling intlnence characterized and marked with em])hasis liis
conduct in his intercourse with all men. Sir, there are two
considei'ations whicli suggest themselves in this connection
in whicli I speak whicli it may not be amiss to record.
H. Mis. 2G2 a
18 Address of Mr. Coinpton, of Maryland^ on Ihc
In no era of recorded liistorj- can there be fonud a type of
manhood which compares with that developed and displayed
by tlie men of this country during the first fifty years of our
independence as a nation. This was the product of a com-
bination which, under the circumstances which procured it,
made the result both natural and certain.
The simplicity of a stern dignity which rebuked all levity;
the earnestness of convictions unyielding and unconquer-
able; the intensity of abhorrence of tyranny which went to
the extreme of persecution for repression sake, as illustrated
by the intrepid Puritan of the North in contact on the tented
field and in the forum of high debate in support of a com-
mon cause, with the chivalric coui'age. the courteous bear-
ing, the generous sympathy, the unselfish heroisin of the
gallant Cavalier of the South, begot a style of manners and
a code of morals out of which grew a type of manhood
which the world has never seen surpassed. Nowhere was
this type more strongly marked oi- more robust than in the
middle latitude of the old thirteen, where our late friend
first breathed the air of heaven.
And now, sir, as to the second thought which occurs to
me — anotlier class of notable men. and of whicli class Mr.
TowNSHEND was a representative specimen. Sir, it is the
strongest and boldest of the hive whicli ventures farthest
and remains away longest. So it has ever been the .strong-
est and l)oldest of the youth of the Eastern States who have
.shaken the dust of their native hills from their feet, severed
the ties of home and kindred, and ventured to breast the
billows and challenge the chances of fortune in the unde-
veloped West, Southwest, and Northwest. And behold the
marvelous result I Not only mighty emi^ires springing into
being as by magic, Init emijires peopled with a race of men
who have been and are giants in their day and generation.
Life and Cliaractci of Ricliard ]]'. To'a'iisliciid. 19
The Atlantic Coast States still Lave, arid ever will have
while free American States exist, their men of mark, tall
and imposing oaks in any forest; but the West, Northwest,
and Southwest, in the persons of the descendants from this
stock, is ornamented with whole foi'ests of such.
But, Mr. Speaker, the distinguishing characteristics of
Richard W. Towxshend were such as would have won for
him distinction and success in any locality or community.
Generous almost to a faiilt. C(jurageous, persevering,
true to trusts and to friends, self-asserting, and having well-
grounded convictions, while in his intercourse with his fel-
lows he accorded to all, high and low, the generous cour-
te.sy which is their due, he walked with head erect aiid
demanded an<1 commanded at all times the consideration
which was his due.
He treated with passionate contempt the truckling spirit
of those who woiild fawn upon or flatter the creatui-es of
ostentatious wealth. He respected merit wherever found
and loved the people.
Never, sir, in the histoiy of this House did any member
ever devote himself with more untiring zeal in the discharge
of every duty attaching to the position, and a contented and
generous constituency estimated him at his real value. With,
an enlightened conscience he respected sacred things; he
interpreted the Constitution as meaning what it said, and
relied upon the enfoi'cement of democratic })riuciples as the
only guaranty for the perpetuation of " liberty regulated by
law." and was an enthusiast in his creeds, because he believed
the converse of these propositions meant the ultimate tri-
umph of infidelity, despotism, and anarchy. Well trained
and vigorous, he was armed for the defense of his princi-
Standing thus at the zenith of his worth and in the pi-ime
20 Address of Mr. Compton, of Maryland, on the
of life, the fell stroke of the fatal destroyei- came. When
the sun of his life shone brightest it paled suddenly and dis-
appeared forever. Foi-ever, did I say ? Nay. sir, let us hope
only to reappear in a purer ether to shine with imperishable
glory in the world eternal. With this hope let the unavail-
ing tear be dried. And who woi;ld reliuqviish this ho])e ?
Why shrinks the soul back upon itself and startles at de-
struction ? Are we but as the beasts of the field and the
grass that withers ? Is it to live, to die, and be buried that
we were created and endowed with Godlike attribtites ? Are
' ' the vain pomp and glory of this world " the acme of human
hopes ? Is the feai- of • ' falling into naught " or the ' ' dread
of something after death" to chill our efforts or dwarf our
aspirations ? If so, then hope bids the world farewell, our
civilization is a mockery, and the maxim of the fool, ' ' Let
us eat, drink, and be merry," is the suminum bonum of hu-
man happiness and the ne iJlus ultra of human wisdom.
But, " while that which we know is little," "' are we not of
nobler substance than the stars" and "have we not faculties
while they have none ?"
Dust thou art, to dust returnest, was not spoken of the soul.
Whether in ignorance and groping in the midnight of bru-
tish savagery or on the highest peaks of intellectual attain-
ments, man has not and never will renounce the hope kindled
by the spark of divinity mthin him.
Why weep, tlien, for him who serenely to his final rest has passed, wliile
the soft memory of liis virtues yet lingers, like twilight hues when the
bright sun has set ?
Life and Character of Richard IV. Townshcnd. 21
Address of Mr. Henderson, of Illinois.
Mr. Speaker: I can not permit this occasion to pass with-
out paying some tribute of respect to the memory of my hxte
colleague and friend, Hon. Richard W. Townshend. For
twelve successive years Mr. Townshend and myself served
together in this body a.s Representatives from the same
State; and during all that time, while differing as we did,
and sometimes widely, on political questions, yet our per-
sonal relations were ever of the most friendly character.
And to-day, looking back over our long association here, I
well remember many acts of kindness which I received from
his hands; for all of us, Mr. Speaker, have it in our power
at times to assist each other in the performance of our va-
ried and oftentimes perplexing duties as members of this
body; and it gives me pleasure to say on this occasion that
Mr. Townshend was, during all of our association in the
public service, my personal friend, and that I never ap-
pealed to him in vain for assistance when it was in hisjjower
to render it. Grateful as he was for favors received, Mr.
Townshend was ever prompt and ready to return them
when the opportunity was offered.
Mr. Speaker, Richard W. Townshend was, to a great ex-
tent, the architect of his own fortunes. At the age of ten
years he was attending school in this city, and I have been
informed that in his boyhood he was a page in this body.
At the age of eighteen years he went with Hon. Samuel S.
Marshall, for many years a distinguished Representative in
Congress from the State of Illinois, to that State and read
law in his office. He was a little later elected clerk of the
circuit court bf the county in which he lived, and served in
22 Address of Mr. Henderson, of Illinois, on the
tliat capacity for several years. Theu lie was elected State's
attorney, and served for a time in that capacity. In 1876
he was elected a Representative in Congress from the State
of Illinois, and served as such to the day of his death, having
been successively elected a member of the Forty-fifth, Forty-
sixth, Forty-seventh, Forty-eighth, Forty-ninth, Fiftieth,
and Fifty-first Congresses, biit departed this life just after
the expiration of the.Fiftieth Congress.
But it is not my jiiirpose, Mr. Speaker, to S23eak at length
of the public service of my late colleague on this occasion.
That will be better done, I am sure, by others. I desire,
however, to add my testimony to the fidelity and ability
with which he served his constituents and his country, to
his kindness of heart, and to the warmth and sincerity of liis
friendship. Eichard W. Townshend, Mr. Speaker, was
an earnest, able, and faithful Representative, always active
and energetic in the discharge of his piiblic duties and in
doing whatever he believed to be for the best interests of his
constituents and the country.
He was not, in my opinion, a strong man physically, bait
he was a man of great mental activity and of more than
ordinary ability, and during his long service here he served
his constituents not only with great fidelity, but witli un-
tiring, iinceasing energy and industry.
Mr. Speaker, it was with deep sorrow and regret that I
heard of the illness and death of my friend and colleague,
and to-day my heart is full of sorrow and sympathy for his
bereaved widow and family. Cut down, as he was, in
the vigor of his manhood and in the midst of his activity
and iisef ulness, his decease is deeply deplored by his constit-
uents and friends and by the State whicli he represented in
part with distinguished ability for so many years as a mem-
ber of this House.
Life and Character of Richard IT. Townshend. 23
But he is gone, Mr. Speaker, and how soon we shall follow
him none of us know. But we do know that death has been
busy with the members of the Fifty-first Congress, and that
some of the most distinguished and useful of our associates
have been taken from us. We can not to-day speak of the
death of Richard W. Townshend without remembering
that the lamented S. S. Cox, Judge Kelley. and others have
since followed him to '-the undiscovered country, from
whose bourn no traveler returns."
It is sad, indeed, to think that the voices of these dis-
tinguished men, heard so often in these halls during my
service here, will be heard no more forever. They were
able and faithful Representatives and public servants, and
it will be well for us if we imitate their virtues and dis-
charge our duties here with the same fidelity and honesty
which characterized them in their long and faithful i:)ublic
service. Then it can be said of us, as I am sure we may all
say of them.
Well doue, thdii good and faithful .servants.
ADDRESS OF Mr. Hooker, of Mississippi.
Mr Speaker: When requested by the gentleman from
Illinois [Mr. Williams], the immediate successor of our de-
ceased friend, to take part in these obsequies of our lamented
brother, I responded that I would regard it not only as a
duty to do so, but one which, in view of the relations which
existed between Mr. Townshend and myself, I should feel
myself remiss if I did not consent to perform. And though
I have no written speech to deliver commemorative of the
virtues and public services of our fi'iend and brother, I have
24 Address of Mr. Hooker, of Mississippi, on the
a word to say in reference to my connection witli liim in the
rendering of those services.
Sir, deatli to the old or those whom Providence has afflicted
with infirmities seems natural, but when it comes to those
who are in the meridian of life and at the very acme of their
usefulness, it is hard for frail humanity to exclaim :
The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of
Mortality is the fate of all, but he whose magic hand
swept across the chords of the human heart with a touch
probably never equaled by another has told us that even in
this case —
Tlie weariest and most loathed worldly life
That age, ache, penury, and imprisonment
Can lay on nature is a paradise
To what we fear of death.
That sentiment of the great English poet may be true, Mr.
Speaker, but there is another equally true— that to him who
has met the duties and obligations of life and discharged
them faithfully death comes but once, and once only to the
brave, come when it may. Thus it came most unexpectedly
to our deceased brother.
I was associated with him in many Congresses in which
he served, and in the Fiftieth Congress, which had just
closed. Only a few days before his death I met him in these
Halls and had familiar social intercourse with him. He
looked the picture of health, and he was animated, as his
distinguished colleague. General Henderson, has said, by
the hope, the elastic spirit, and the fine temper which al-
ways distinguished him. little apprehending that he in his
turn, and in a few days, must pay the debt of mortality
which all humanity must pay. And I was grieved ere yet I
had reached my home to learn by the telegraphic wire that
Life and Character of Richard IV. ToiuJis/ieiid. 25
he whom I had left in such robust health, in such vigorous
physical condition, and such hopeful frame of mind had,
alasl passed away in the prime of his manhood.
It was my fortune. Mr. Speaker, to he associated with Mr.
TowNSHEND from his first entrance into these Halls. Thehis-
tory of his life has beeu given by his distinguished successor
from his own Congressional district, and given, too, by my
friend from Maryland [Mr. Compton], who represents the
district in wliich Mr. ToWNSHEND was born. At an early age
he left tlie home of his nativity and came to this city, ex-
hibiting even in his boyhood those marvelous traits of his
character— zeal, intrepidity, energy, fidelity, and honesty in
the discharge of wliatever duty was devolved upon him.
Moved by the spirit which moves so many of our young
men in the Eastern and Middle States, he sought his fortune
in the great West. Making his home in the State of Illinois,
he was there the recipient of many honors. Admitted to the
bar at the age of twenty -two, elected to the responsible posi-
tion of representing his constituency in the central execu-
tive committee for several years; elected as a delegate to
the convention which met in ISr^; and then. sir. the same
spirit that animated him in the discharge of these duties
recommended him to the constituency in whose midst he
lived, and he had the honor to be selected by a large major-
ity to the Forty-fifth, the Forty-sixth, the Forty-seventh,
the Forty-eighth, the Forty-ninth, the Fiftieth, and the
Fifty-first Congresses. In all these positions he discharged
the duties that devolved upon him with wonderful zeal and
When he was nominated by the Speaker of the last House
of Representatives as chairman of the Committee on Mili-
tary Affairs I must confess that I felt some anxiety, some
trepidation as to how he would meet the responsibilities of
26 Address of Mr. Hooker^ of Mississippi, on the
the grave position to which the Speaker had assigned him;
for I had not understood that he had been so situated as to
acquire kno\v-ledge of military affairs. But I was more than
gratefully disappointed when I, as an humble member of
that committee, associated with him in the last Congress,
found that he brought to the discharge of the duties of the
chairmanship of this great committee, having in its care the
Army of the United States and the laws which govern it —
I found that by zeal and industry and study and familiarity
with military men. whose society he always courted, he had
made himself preeminently familiar with the questions com-
ing before him in the position to which the Speaker of the
last House had assigned him.
No man has exhibited on this floor a greater knowledge
of the laws which should govern the country in providing
for its soldiers and officers. He familiarized himself most
thoroughly with all the laws that liad been enacted on this
subject. In the debates on this floor when he imagined, and
probably imagined correctly, that the particular jurisdiction
of his own committee was invaded by others, he defended it
with all the zeal and earnestness, and even, I may say. ag-
gressiveness, which characterized him whenever he spoke
upon any subject. No public position was ever filled with
greater honor, fidelity, zeal, and courage than his chairman-
ship of that committee.
The honorable gentleman [Mr. Ciitcheon] who l>as now
the honor to preside over that committee was associated with
us in the last Congress. The best wi.sh that I can make for
him is that in the administration of his great duties he may
imitate the zeal, the ability, the learning, and the bravery
which distinguished our deceased comrade in the discliarge
of those responsible duties.
Others have s^joken of Mr. Townshend's private and
Life and Character of Richard IV. Toivnshcnd. 27
social virtues. It was my fortune to be witli liim in tlie
Forty-fifth Congress, the Forty-sixth and the Forty-seventh,
and to be with him again in the Fiftieth Congress. It is a
source of profound regret to me that I can not have the
pleasure of being with him in the present Congress.
But early as he departed this life, soon as the great de-
stroyer mowed him down, he has left behind him a name
and a record upon the Congressional history of this country
that will cause him to be forever remembered in the estima-
tion of those with whom he associated and the constituency
whom he served so faithfully and bravely.
Long as was my association with him, Mr. Speaker, I did
not discover that he had a single vice or fault. If he had,
intimate association for several years never disclosed it to
me. We may now commit his remains to the bosom of our
common mother, the earth, with the declaration that no
man knew him so intimately as to discover that he was ever
afraid to speak his sentiments, ever afraid to announce his
views. Performing faithfidly all the duties of life, if he
had any faults I did not know them; and if there were such
we commit them with him to the judgment of that Great
Author of our common being who holds the scales of justice
to weigh us all with even balance and omnipotent power.
We commit them to the keen gaze of Him —
Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of His hand, and meted
out lieaven with the span, and comprehended the dust of the eartli in a
measure, and weighed the mountains in scales and the hills in a balance.
28 Address of Mr. Cutc/ieon^ 0/ Michigan, on the
Address of Mr. Cutcheon, of Michigan.
Mr. Speaker : Success among men is not measured so
much by the absolute elevation that is gained as it is by the
distance traveled; not so much by the honors that are at-
tained as by the obstacles which are overcome and by the
character which is developed in overcoming those obstacles.
Some men are born with all the adventitious aids of wealth,
of powerful friends, of influential connections. To such
there is no excuse for not succeeding, except the want of
ability to succeed. But others are obliged to contest every
inch of ground and grow strong with battle; and in such,
courage and vigor are developed by the conflict. Of this
latter class of men, Mr. Speaker, men who have grown
strong by conflict, was Mr. Richard W. Townshend, our
deceased colleague, in whose memory we speak to-day.
It is not necessary for me. sir, to repeat the history of
his life. I shall merely recall some of the steps of his prog-
ress in order that we may therebj^ measure the strength of
his character and the power of his will. Born in an adjoin-
ing county of Maryland, almost if not quite within sight of
the dome of this Capitol, he was at two years of age, by the
death of his father, left an orphan, the youngest but one of
nine children. With his mother he removed while still a
child to this city, in order that the children might enjoy bet-
ter advantages for an education than could be obtained in the
country where they were residing. It was here in this Cap-
ital that he gained whatever schooling he received. While
still in early life he became a clerk in Shillington's book-
store in this city, which then occupied the corner of Four-
and-a-half sti-eet and Pennsylvania avenue, and it was there
Life and Character of Richard ]]'. Townsheiid. 29
that he met and became acquainted with the great states-
men of the day. about the time of the great agitation over
the repeal of the Missoiiri compromise and the enactment of
the Kansas-Nebraska bill.
It was there, Mr. Speaker, that Mr. Towxshend was accus-
tomed to hear the voices of such statesmen as Douglas and
Cass and became inspired with the hope and purpose that
he might himself participate in the councils of the nation.
At a later date, through the assistance of one of the lionor-
able Representatives of the State of Illinois, he received an
api^ointment as page upon the floor of. this House, during
the Speakership of our venerable colleague who but a few
moments ago sat here upon my right. General Banks.
Through the advice and counsel of Hon. S. S. Marshall, of
Illinois, he was induced, like many other young men of the
day, to try his fortunes in the great, growing, and inviting
Western country, and with Mr. Marshall he went to Illin<_)is,
and after a temporary stay at Cairo he settled at McLeans-
borough, where he remained until 1873. Four years after
his movement westward, having occupied himself mainly in
teaching and the study of the law. he was admitted to the
bar of that State, and liis next step in the progre.ss of life
was his election as clerk of the county in which he resided,
and, on the expiration of his term in tliat office, he was
elected prosecuting or State's attorney for the twelfth ju-
dicial distinct, comprising, I believe, .some six counties. At
the end of that period of service, having removed in the
meantime to Shawneetown, which remained his home until
his lamented death, for some four years he engaged in the
business of his profession as a practitioner of the law and
also in the banking business.
But the industry which he had displayed in the offices to
which lie had already been called pointed to him as a man
30 Address of Mr. Ciitcheon^ of Michigan, on the
fitted for a higher and wider spliere of action, and so in 1876
the constituency of that Congressional distinct called upon
him to become their standard-bearer as the representative
of the Democratic party and to come to this Capital as their
Representative in Congress. At each successive election
after that date he was again and again returned until death
took him from the scene of iisefulness and activity which
he so well occupied.
I have thus, Mr. Speaker, very briefly recounted the out-
ward aspect of his life and growth, not so much to dwell
upon his several successive stages of activity, as to indicate
thereby the growing and increasing c(jnfidence which the
people with whom he came in contact reposed in him.
In this House he was called to various fields of activity.
He served upon the Committee on the Judiciary, and for a
number of terms upon the Committee on Appropriations,
and finally as chairman of the Committee on Military Affairs.
It was not until the Forty-eighth Congress, when I took my
seat in this body, that I became personally ac(iuainte(l with
Mr. TowNSHEND, and not until the Fiftieth Congress that
the acquaintance ripened into anything that could be called
intimacy between i;s. We sat upon opposite sides of this
Hall. Ovlt opinions differed widely and very frequently
clashed, and yet I learned to know Mr. Townshend as a
man of earnest, strong conviction, fearless in the expression
of what he believed to be right, and one who always had
the courage of his convictions.
At the organization of the Fiftieth Congress it became ap-
parent to the then Speaker of the House that Mr. Town-
shend was entitled to an apijointment among the higher
or more important chairmanships of the committees of the
House. The gentleman who would have been the senior mem-
ber on the Democratic side of the Committee on Military
Life and Character of Richard J I'. To'iOishcud. 31
Affairs in the Fiftieth Congress was General Wheeler, of
Alabama. But I presume that the fact that his colleague,
Colonel Herbert, also of Alaliama. was already at the head
of the great Committee on Naval Affairs was the reason
why another was selected to fill the chairmanship of Mili-
tary Aft'airs, and that honor and responsibility fell upon our
It was, perhaps, as has been indicated by my friend, Gen- ^
eral Hooker, a bold thing for a man who had seen no mili-
tary service and who had never served on the Committee on
Military Affairs, to accept the chairmanship of that very
important committee, amongst associates composed almost
entirely of nnlitary men, and numbering among them such
veterans as Generals Hooker and Spinola, and especially Avas
this so when we look back at the long line of distinguished
soldiers who have served at the head of that committee since
the beginning of the late war. The first of these was Gen-
eral Robert C. Schenck, a major-general of volunteers. He
was succeeded by the lamented James A. Garfield, a major-
general of volunteers and afterward President of the United
States. Then came General John A. Logan, of Illinois;
General John Coburn. of Indiana; General Henry B. Ban-
ning, of Ohio; General W. A. J. Sparks, of Illinois; Gen-
eral T. J. Henderson, our distinguished colleague who has
just .spoken; ilaj. Gen. William S. Rosecrans, for a long
time at the head of the Army of the Cumberland, and Gen-
eral Edward S. Bragg, of Wisconsin, the galhuit com-
mander of the "Iron Brigade." These were the men who
had held position as chairman of the Committee on Military
Affairs from ISfil until the beginning of the Fiftieth Con-
gress, and to this illusti'ious line our friend and colleague,
Mr. TowNSHEND, was called. I must confess, Mr. Speaker,
that for one, serving then my third term on that committee,
32 Address of Mr. Cufckcoti, of Michigan, on the
I felt some misgivings as to liis success in carrying the bur-
dens which this apiioiutment imposed, not from any want
of conhdeuce in his ability, but from a distrust of his famil-
iarity with the aflf airs of that important committee and with
the special line of legislation intrusted to it.
But all such apprehensions were soon dissipateil. He as-
sumed the position to which he was assigned with confidence
in himself and in his ability to meet 6very just requirement,
and with an industry, a modesty, a discernment, and an im-
partiality which very soon gained him the c<mfidence of every
member of that committee. Strong partisan as he was in
party contests uijon this floor, within the committee-room no
member of that committee could ever have discerned to which
political party he belonged. He apjjlied himself at once and
in earnest to acquire the necessary knowledge and familiar-
ity, not only with the duties of the office, but with the great
questions that came before the committee, until he made him-
self master of the situation. We all shall remember the
earnest fight Mr. Townshend made for what he believed to
be the just rights of his committee in the Fiftieth Congress.
I refer to the matter of seacoast defense. His committee
had reported a bill upcm this subject which was upon tlie
Calendar, and when it was proposed to take this juris-
diction from his committee and transfer it to another we
shall ever remember the vigor, the earnestness, and the cour-
age with which he contended for what he believed to lie the
right. We shall also remember another fight which lie made
in the Forty-ninth Congress ui)on the Mexican pension bill.
His name will be ever intimately connected with that legis-
There were other measures that were very dear to his heart,
one of which has already been allnded to: the bill to bring
about a conference or congress of tlie American nations. I
Life and Character of Richard IT. Townshend. 33
can not say that the idea originated with liini. I believe that
honor belongs to Henry Clay, and after him to Stephen A.
Douglas, of his own State; Init it has had no warmer friend
and no more zealous advocate in Congress since I have had
the honor to be a member of the House than was our col-
league, Mr. Townshend.
Mr. Speaker, I am glad to have had this opi^ortunity to
bear my testimony to his iidelity and patriotism, and to ren-
der this inadequate tribute to his character and work.
Our eulogies will not be long remembered, their breath
will pass like the perfume of a fading flower, but his work
will abide and his memory will be cherished long after the
last echo of our praises shall have passed into oblivion.
Mr. Speaker, it is no light responsibility to be a member of
this House. When we consider the number and the breadth
of the questions which are here to be discussed and decided,
the responsibility is indeed a great <me. To take charge of
one of the great committees of this House is a larger responsi-
bility. But when you come to test the real power of a
man, it can best be done when you try his hold upon the
people from whom he comes, and the fact that Mr. Town-
shend was returned to this House by a great constituency
that knew him well for seven successive Congresses is suffi-
cient and adequate evidence that he came close to the hearts
of his people. He was a gentleman in his bearing, always
urbane, always friendly, and whenever he went among the
people he had a friendly word and a cordial gi-asp of the hand
for every one.
I shall remember with pleasure, and with pleasure only,
my association with him on the Committee on Military Af-
fairs. But he has gone from us. I shall never forget the
last time that I met him. apparently in the fullness of
health and in the zenith of a successful career. 1 met him
H. Mis. 262 3
34 Ad(/rtss of Mr. Maish^ of FViuisylvciiiia, on the
at a reception wliich was given in this city to a former Vice-
President of the United States. Hon. Hannibal Hamlin, of
Maine. We parted that night for the last time, and almost
before I was aware tliat he was ill came the stunning intelli-
gence that he had passed away. Having tarried in the city
after the adjournment of Congress it was my fortune to be
one of those who Ijore him to his last resting place. On the
romantic and picturesque banks of Rock Creek we laid him
to his rest —
After work well done,
After battle well won.
A patriotic citizen, a clean-handed and far-seeing states-
man, a loving and affectionate father and liusband— in the
broadest and fullest sense of the word a good man— we laid
him to his rest. May he sleep in peace!
ADDRESS OF Mr. MAISH, OF PENNSYLVANIA.
Mr. Speaker: We withdraw for a short time from the ex-
citing scenes of legislative strife to pay the last sad rites to
a departed brother. It is fitting that we should do this; pre-
eminently so when in honor of a good man and faithful pub-
lic servant. Our late brother merits our highest homage,
for he ad(jrned every public station he was called upon to fill.
I first met him at the opening of the Forty-fifth Congress,
his first appearance here as a Representative. Our acquaint-
ance soon ripened into a warm personal attachment which
continued unbroken until death removed him from our midst.
At the end of the Forty-fifth Congress I retired from pub-
lic life, and returned to it again at the Fiftieth Congress.
My old friend, who had been here uninterruptedly all the
time, cordially welcomed me back to this Hall, and for the
Life and Character of Richard W. Town she iid. 35
two sessions that we served together in that Congress he
was my daily companion. His death, therefore, was to me
more than an ordinary loss. A friend whose adoption I had
tried and whom I had grappled to my soul with hooks of
steel has passed from time into eternity. I dare not trust
myself to dwell longer upon my personal relations with
The road to public station in our country is opened to all.
The opportunity to reach it is afforded by our free institu-
tions; bvitfor this very reason genuine merit is most certain
to win, and therefore it is safe to conclude that the man who
succeeds in public life is the one who most deserves success.
The people, who are the fountain of power in this country,
are not slow to discern the merits of a competitor for public
honor. This is strikingly illustrated in the career of Mr.
Tov^TNSHEND. Without the advantages of a thorough educa-
tion, he rose by gradual steps from the position of a page in
this House to the exalted office of Representative in Con-
gress. The bald summary of the principal events of his
life as given in the Congressional Directory will give you
the successive steps of his ascent, and I will read it, for it is
replete with instruction:
Richard W. Townshend, of Shawneetown. was born in Prince
George's County, Md., April 30, 1840; came to Washington City when
ten years of age, and was there educated at public and private schools;
removed to Illinois in 185S; taught school in Fayette County; studied law
with S. S. Jilarshall at McLeansborough; was admitted to the bar in 1862.
and has since practiced; was clerk of the circuit court of Hamilton County
1863-1868; was prosecuting attorney for the twelfth judicial circuit 1868-
1872; removed in 1873 from McLeansborough to Shawneetown, where he
was an officer of the Gallatin National Bank; was a member of the
Democratic State central committee of Illinois 1864, 1865, 1874, and 187o;
was a delegate to tlie national Democratic convention at Baltimore in
1873: was elected to the Forty-fifth, Forty-sixth, Forty-seventli. Forty-
eighth. Forty-ninth, and Fiftieth Congresses, and was reelected to the
Fifty- first Congress.
36 Address of Mr. Maish^ of Pennsylvania., oit the
Such continiied pi'eferment by his coustitueuts is the best
evidence of his worth. He was their trusted servant, and
the longer he continued in their service the stronger became
their attachment for him. What a touching spectacle was
presented in his district when the sad intelligence of his
death reached it. His grief-stricken people assembled in
the churches, in the courthouses, in the schoolhouses to do
honor to his memory, and in solemn language gave expres-
sion to the love and esteem in which they held him and the
deep sense of the loss they sustained. No higher testimony
could be produced of the deep place he occupied in the
hearts of his people.
I have no doubt that it was fortunate for Mr. Townshend
to have commenced life in a book-store in this city, as he did ,
for whilst there he acquired an insatiable thirst for English
literature, a passion that never deserted him during his act-
ive and busy life. There it was that he laid the ground-
work of his future success. In that little store he formed
the acquaintance of some of the great statesmen of those
days, and their example filled him with high and laudable
aspirations. As he once told me, he left his humble station
liere to seek his fortune in the West with the firm resolution
that he would return to the Capital of his country as a Rep-
resentative in Congress. He had read much, and inwardly
learned and digested what he had read. He was, therefore,
according to Lord Bacon, both a full and a ready man, and
such undoubtedly he was.
The personal characteristics of our brother were all calcu-
lated to contribute to his success in life. So thoroughly did
he, under all circumstances, maintain his integrity, that
suspicion never dared to whisj^er his name. He was always
actuated by the highest sense of duty. Expediency could
not swerve him from it nor party advantage induce him to
Life and Character of Richard IV. To-a'iishcnd. 37
abandon it. To him its call was always imperative. He
was an in.lefatigaljle worker. He had the genins of method-
ical application, and that enabled him to do the work of two
ordinary men. Great labor is the price of success, and he
paid to the very farthing its exacting price.
He often participated in the discussions of this body, and
his addresses give evidence of the great care and researcli
he bestowed upon their preparation. He possessed many of
the highest qualities of the orator. He was gifted with a
singularly melodious voice. Clear as the notes of a lute, it
could be distinctly heard in every part of this Hall. Though
he knew no other language but his mother tongue, of this,
however, he was a master. To these qualities lie added a
most agreeable manner. His delivery was easy and grace-
ful. He was highly endowed with the faculty of impromptu
speaking, and hence he was a ready and forcible debater.
He was cut down with his armor on in the very prime of
life. To what honors he would have reached had he lived
another score of years no one can conjecture. When we
contemplate the wonderful success he already achieved and
his great resources, we can not doubt, to borrow the lan-
guage of another —
That in his left hand would have been uncounted riches and abundant
honor, if only length of days had been given to his right.
Mr. Speaker, all that was mortal of poor DickTownshend
lies beneath the sod, but the immortal lives and whispers to
ear and heart in the old sweet, gentle tones of the joy of a
38 Address of Mr. Lane, of Illinois, on the
ADDRESS OF Mr, Lane, of Illinois.
Mr. Speaker: It is said that in life we are in the midst
of death. At the eud of every life there is an open grave.
Life passes through us; we do not possess it. It is the off-
spring of death, and one life is but a gleam of time between
There is nothing of which we are so fond and withal so
careless as life. God is the Giver, and life is with us a part-
nership, and the great problem of life is to make the ideal
real, and connect the divine at the summit of the mountain
with the human at the base. It is written that "all men
must die." No lawyer has ever yet perfected an appeal or
sued out a writ of error from the judgment which dooms us
to deatli. From it no appeal lies.
The mandate and sentence are issiied from a court of last
resort. People come and go as the grass of the field or the
leaves of the forest, and the countless millions that throng
the world to-day and dispose of its business will to-morrow
melt as snow before the meridian sun. But is this all? Is
death to be the end? The grave withoiit hojie? If there is
no morning to dawn upon the night of death's sleep then
sorrow has no consolation and life is without a meaning.
Can we only agree with the poetess when she says:
Life, I know not what thou art.
But I know that thou and I must part;
And when, or where, or how we met,
I own to me "s a secret vet.
* * * *
'Tis liard to part when friends are dear;
Perhaj3s "twill cost a sigh, a tear;
Then steal away, give little warning;
Choose thine own time, say not good night,
But in some brighter clime bid me good morning.
TJfc and Character of Kicliani ]]'. lomtsJ/finL 39
In the beautiful drama of Ion the instinct of immortality, so
eloquently written by the death-devoted Greek, finds a deejj
response in every thoughtful soul. When about to yield his
young existence as a sacrifice to fate, his beloved Clemanthe
asks liim if they should not meet again; to which he rejilied:
I have asked that dreadful question of the hills that look eternal: of the
eti'eams that flow forever ; of the stars among whose fields of azure my
raised spirit has walked in glory. All were dumb. But wliile I gaze upon
thy face I feel that there is something in that love that mantles through its
beauty that can not wholly perish. We shall meet again, Clemanthe.
It was asked many generati(_)ns ago:
If a man die, shall he live again ?
Later on it was answered by the blessed Master, who said :
He that believeth on Me hath everlasting Ufe.
It is not all of life to live, nor all of death to die, and every
man has lived long enough who has gone through life with an
nntarnished character. So it was with my friend Richard
W. TowNSHEND. He died like a hero; he fell at his post,
contending for the right. What better ending of a human
life could there be ? Mr. Townshend was himself and no
one else; he was no imitator; he said and did what no one
but Richard W. Townshend could say and do. Such a
character as his could not l)e constructed or i)ut together.
It needs first of all a principle that is animated, and one,
therefore, that is animating. It wants an impidse, glowing,
determined, and passionate, and these were possessed in an
eminent degree by Mr. Townshend.
The last time I saw him in this Chamber he was engaged
in a protracted debate with that distinguished statesman and
prince of parliamentai'ians, now unfortunately absent from
this House, Mr. Randall, of Pennsylvania. That evening,
as we shook hands and parted at the door of this Chamber,
I congratulated him on the splendid effort he had made in
the defense of his committee. He told me he was very tired.
40 Address of Mr. Laiu\ of Illinois^ o/i the
and thus we separated fur the night. The next morning he
was taken sick, and in a little over one week from that time,
when, at my home in Illinois, his friends wired me that he
was dead, I could scarcely believe my senses; yet it was true.
I could only see him as he contended on this floor for more
than two hours in debate in that memorable contest that I
have mentioned, in the full meridian of his manhood and iii
the very zenith of his power. He had taught school when a
young man in one of the counties in the district which I now
have the honor to represent on this floor, and he was very
well acciuainted there, and when it became known that he
was no more every head was bowed in sorrow and every
heart went out in loving sympathy to his heartbroken widow
and his orphan children. He was well known all over the
State of Illinois, but more particularly in the southeru part,
where he resided, and in the Nineteenth district of that State,
which for so many terms he represented on this floor.
He moved to Illinois when he was but eighteen years of
age, and without money and by his own exertions he rajjidly
rose to eminence and was in the true sense of that term a
self-made man. From a clerk in a book-store to a page in
Congress; from a page to a school teacher; from a teacher
to a lawyer; from a lawyer to a clerk of a circuit court: from
clerk of the circuit court to prosecuting attorney for the
twelfth district of Illinois, and from prosecuting attorney to
a seat in Congress, to which place he was five times reelected.
He was a true embodiment of Amei'ii^an progress and man-
hood, and an examjjle to every aspii'ing, moneyless young
man in this nation, as to the boundless possibilities that are
open before him.
In what country in the world could a child of poverty have
risen to the highest honors of the State? In what land and
under what civilization but our own could like results be
Life and CJiaractcr of Richard IF. 7\ra'iis/ifiid. 41
accomplislied? And, Mr. Siieaker, panloii mo for the allu-
sion when I say that, the great State of Illinois has contrib-
iited its full quota of such men to the nation and to the
world, prominent among whom were a Douglas and a Lin-
coln. But death has no res])ect for greatness. The strong
and brave are stricken down side by side with the feeble
and the timid. The rich and poor, peasant and king, are
subject alike to his fatal shaft. It is so ordered by our heav-
enly Father, and I bow my head in humble submission, and
on this occasion I pay my simple but heartfelt tribute of
respect to the memory of my departed friend, one whom I
could always trust and whose conduct was uniformly marked
by dignity, courtesy, and kindness.
His friends and associates, the members of this House, the
whole people of tlie State that he loved and served so well,
have joined in lamenting his death and honoring his mem-
ory. Oh, that my confused mind could conceive and my
poor stammering tongue express in some fitting words the
deep sense of the loss my sad heart feels at the death of him
we mourn to-day. But I am cheered when I see that my
colleagues here to-day, who knew our departed friend more
intimately than I. have done ample justice to his memory
in their eloquent eulogies. We know that the mortal body
of our friend lies in the silent city of the dead; but that is
not death, for the immortal soul is safe in the abode of the
blessed, beyond the reach of praise and censure, where it
shall enjoy a state of eternal felicity forever.
There is no death ! The stars go down
To rise upon some fairer shore.
And liri^ht in lieaven's jeweled crown
They sliine for evermore.
There is no death ! But angel forms
Walk o'er the earth with silent tread;
They bear ovu- liest k)Ted things away
And then we call them dead.
42 Address of Mr. Henderson, of loiva, on the
Address of Mr. Henderson, of Iowa.
Mr. Speaker: Death, though no more mysterious than
birth, is the most fearful word known to human si^eech. No
matter what may be your religion, it brings terror to life's
Be you the trustful Christian, believing without a doubt
in another state of existence where we can recognize the ob-
jects of our earthly loves, or be you one who sees in death
only the closing scene in life's drama or tragedy, and hoping
only for mental sleep and rest, with swift alliances with
other forces, but all unconscious of the former self: believe
or think or hope whatever you will, death is "the king of
terrors," and few, a sad, sad few, may bid him welcome.
And yet death, always approaching — cold, relentless death,
is ever just, and nature's kindest messenger to man.
It strikes the mighty leader in the battle's front. It strikes
the mightier leader in the field of thought. We see it
entering the poor man's home and leave a wife and little ones
without a shield from jioverty and want. The sweetest face,
the brightest eye, and loveliest form are powerless, even for
an instant, to keep back the falling blow. It toiiches the
cradle and the pretty baby wakes no more. It walks
through your city to-day and to-morrow you are a stranger
in your own home.
We tax philosophy, call out the last reserve of courage, ■
lean on religion and appeal to hope, and yet how hard it is
to say amen, amen!
And yet I do repeat that death, cold, .seeming cruel, is
ever just and kind, and tender as the mother's kiss upon her
Life and Characicr of Richard ]]\ To'ciishciid. 43
The last year, it seems to me, has been more than full of
death's unexpected visits. In twenty-five years the last
twelve months have seemed to bring more than the usual
number of destroying calls. I do not speak from autlientic
data, but yet it has been my observation that the blows, to
an unusual extent, have fallen on the strong, the active,
and those whose strength and years seemed full of promise
for a long and active life. Of this class Hon. R. W.
TowNSHEND was a conspicuous example. He had left us
even before we could believe that this active, vigorous.
plucky man could really be in danger. Of all our number
none seemed further removed from the assaults of fatal ill-
ness. His death leaves a great gap in our circle here, and
who can estimate the loss of so devoted a husband and
father? In this city his loss was deeply felt and pro-
He was an earnest, reliable, and warm friend of the Dis-
trict of Columbia. Here is a great city, filled with a most
intelligent and moral people, and yet without direct repre-
sentation on this floor. Interests pressing from home upon
Representatives cause us to Ije indifl'erent to the great wants
of these people. Mr. Townshend was a bright exception
to this rule, and never failed, by vote and voice, to fight for
and defend the interests of the citizens of this District.
He was not content wdth following others in legislation,
though reliable and never faltering in support of party
issues. But he had the ability, industry, and ambition to
enter large fields. I instance his investigations and elab-
orate speech touching Pan-American interests, a speech
that vouches for much hard work and painstaking investi-
gation. It showed that he was a man who comprehended
extended Ainerican interests, and that he was in the
advance guard of those favoring more intimate commercial
44 Address of Mr. Henderson.^ of loica, on the
relations lietween all the countries of North and South
America. His activity as to interests that have called
the great Pan-American Congress to ovir national capital
attest the progressive and aggressive bent of his vigoi'ous
All will admit the integrity of our deceased brother. In
his long term of service in this House who ever heard his
integrity as a law-maker and as a man called in question ?
He leaves a spotless name to his descendants.
He was a Democrat of the strongest type. He was an un-
compromising partisan, and he fought for his jJarty as if
fighting for his life. In non-partisan matters he was kind
and obliging to a degree worthy of imitation.
Socially he had but few equals. Full of clean, generous
mirth and a happy humor, he was always a rich addition to
a so -ial gathering. He had the true gift of conversation,
which is to find points of agreement and not points of
difference. No man ever left a comi^any of which Mr.
TowNSHEND was a part feeling wounded by unkind or even
thoughtless observations by him. He was ever the genial,
warm-hearted, happy friend.
He was a self-made man, and grew stronger because of
the difficulties and single-handed struggles of early life.
His success attested the opportunities in this Republic for
pluck, courage, and ability to climb in spite of poverty and
adverse early conditions.
He was a keen debater and a ready talker.
He was a close observer and quick to understand the pub-
lic pulse, and in an eminent degree possessed that industry
so vital to real success, whether in private or in public life.
We have lost a strong man from oiir numbers, and one
deserving the tributes this day paid to his memory. While
sjjeaking of Mr. Townshend to-day we can not forget the
Life and Character of Richard W. Imviishcnd. 45
lamented Cox, tlie lamented Kelley, and others who have so
long been conspicuous as members of this body. I trust
that we shall all take a lesson from the death of these distin-
guished men, and that at least we shall endeavor, while we
remain here, to discharge our puldic duties with the same
fidelity which they exhibited, and with the same entire devo-
tion to our constituents and to our country.
ADDRESS OF MR, MCMlLLIN, OF TENNESSEE,
Mr. Speaker : No word can fittingly describe the calam-
ity a family sustains when its head is taken. No human
tongue can express the loss that a country sustains when a
wise patriot falls. But these two impossibilities, Mr.
Speaker, will not deter me from coming and, in my humble
way briefly, on this sad occasion, laying ray oflFering of
affectionate regret and high appreciation upon the tomb of
Richard W. Townshend. You have already been told
how he struggled in early youth in Maryland and in this
city, and how later on he went to the Mississippi Valley,
the most marvelous valley of the whole earth-, which
Napoleon predicted when selling it to us would cause its
possessor to be the greatest nation in the world. He went
there and pitched his tent beside its most beautiful waters.
It did not take a discriminating people, a people who loved
a " government of the people, by the people, for the people."
long to see that in Mr. Townshend they could have a fit-
ting Representative and that with him could be safely
lodged their dearest interests. So that we see his life epito-
mized by a statement that, although he was cut down at the
untimely age of forty-eight, although lie had ])assed but
twenty-seven years from his majority until his death.
46 Address of Mr. McMi/liii, of Tennessee., on the
twenty-one of those years had been spent in the piiblic serv-
ice, and in all that twenty-one years ej'^e hath not seen nor
ear heard a single man who ever raised his voice against
the intelligence, the integrity, or the industry of this man.
And, Mr. Speaker, whilst I do not believe that for a free
American citizen there ought to exist an aristocracy of any
kind, while I believe that individual citizenship and indi-
vidual worth are the things most to be lauded and most to
be sought as characteristics of the citizen, 1 do hold that if
there were one at the feet of which an American could prop-
erly bow, it would be found in a combination of such intel-
ligence, integrity, and industry as were possessed by our
lost friend. He was elected by the people a member of this
House and sent here, and it was my fortune for ten years to
be intimately associated with him. On committee, in the
House, in the city, everywhere, he was the same man, the
same great good man, the same man with two sides to his
life, one of velvet, to be presented in love and affection
to his family and friends; another, with a coat of mail and
a mailed hand to be raised wherever right cried out, and to
smite wherever wrong should be smitten. He served on the
Committees on Revision of the Laws. Judiciary, Appropria-
tions, and as chairman of the Committee on Military Af-
fairs. He and I were together on the first-named commit-
tee, and together worked on the Supplement to the Revised
Statutes of the United States, comparing its provisions with
the original statutes, and I found him ever vigilant and effi-
Of his public service hei'e you liave already been told.
Those who have served here will agree, I think, that I do
not overdraw the picture when I say that in all the earth
there is no spot where it is so hard to succeed as on the floor
of the House of Representatives of the United States. There
Life and Character of Richard If. Toicnshcnd. 47
is no otlier place in the world Avliere all of the honors one
may have deserved and won, where all of the distinctions that
may have crowned him, and all of the intellectuality he may
have evinced go for so little in the estimate that is made of
him, and where he is put so tlioroughly upon his own re-
sources to see what he can now do, as in this Hall. Many
great intellects fail to achieve the success expected of them
here. This trying ordeal Mr. Towxshend met. and met
successfully. He was recognized here as a leader and he
deserved to be so recognized. He held to the sense of duty
so beautifully expressed by Mr. Webster:
Witli conscience satisfied with the iliscliarge of duty, no consequences
can liarm us.
A sense of duty pursues us ever. It is omnipresent like the Deity. If
we take to ourselves the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost
parts of the earth, duty performed or duty violated is with us for our hap-
piness or our naisery. If we say that darkness shall cover us, in the dark-
ness, as in the light, our obligations are still with us. They are with us
in this life, will be with us at its close, and in that scene of inconceivable
solemnity which lies yet farther onward, we shall still find ourselves sur-
rounded by a sense of duty, to paiu us wherever it has been violated and
to console us where God in his mercy has given us grace to perform it.
This sense of duty our deceased friend lived by and died
by. He might truly say, Mr. Speaker, as did the great car-
dinal of France when his "enemies"' were mentioned:
I have no enemies save the enemies of the State.
If it be true, as has been very beautifully said, that —
We live in deeds, not years; in thoughts, not breaths-
then may it be truly said that the life of our f ri' nd was a full
one. At all times and under all circtimstances he was the
same painstaking, patient, intelligent public servant, know-
ing only the discharge of his duty, knowing only love to his
country and love to his friends.
It has been said, and truly said, that he had strong politi-
cal convictions. Yes; he was of those who hail intelligence
48 Address of Mr. Springer, of Illinois, on ihe
enough to hav« convictions and boldness enougli to avow
tliem. Tliis was only a result of his intense love of country
and his anxiety for its good; but he had at the same time
that feeling of brotherhood which rises above politics, which
has been the comfort of us all, and without which ofttimes
the bickerings and the hot contests of this Hall would be
almost unendurable. Mr. Speaker, I know I voice the senti-
ment of every one who knew our departed friend when I say
that no one who ever served with him here does not have a
bleeding heart this day for the irreparable loss his family
and his country have sustained.
ADDRESS OF MR. SPRINGER, OF ILLINOIS.
Mr. Speaker: After all that has been said on this occa-
sion in reference to the life and character of our deceased
friend and brother, it seems unnecessary for me to say any-
thing further. But at the risk of wearying the House I
miist add my humble tribute to his memory.
Richard Wellington Townshend was born in Prince
George's County, Md.. April 30, 1840, and died in the city
of Washington, in March, 1889, having scarcely reached the
age of forty-nine years. He came to this city when only
ten years of age, and resided here until 1858. He then went
to Illinois, being })ut eighteen years old at the time.
In his choice of a home in Illinois he was largely influ-
enced by Hon. Samuel S. Marshall, who was at that time a
member of Congress from the district afterwards repre-
sented by Mr. Townshend. Judge Marshall was a mem-
ber of this House from 1855 to 1859, and from 18G5 to 1875.
He was one of the ablest members of this body, and is a
gentleman of the highest character and noblest impulses.
Life and Characlcr of Richard W. Toivnshcnd. 49
Soon after lie entered Congress he formed the acquaintance
of young TowNSHEND, who was then only fifteen years of
of age and was one of the pages of this House.
A mutual attachment sprang up between the statesman
and the page, which grew with advancing years, each year
uniting them firmer than before in the bonds of friendship.
Mr. TowNSHEXD studied law in Judge Marshall's law office
at McLeansborough, and when the judge retired frijm Con-
gress, after fourteen years of distinguished service, having
attained the distinction of leadership of his party in this
House, it was his earnest desire that Mr. Townshend should
succeed him. His wishes were gratified, and at the Congres-
sional convention of his party in 1870, Mr. Tovtnshend,
then only thirty-six years of age, was unanimously nomi-
nated as the Democratic candidate for Congress. This, it
will be remembered, was a Presidential year.
Mr. Tilden was the Democratic candidate, and a tremen-
dous effort was put f(jrth by his party supporters to secure
his election. It was important that the ablest men in the
party should be selected, in a time like this, to lead the
party in the local Congressional contests. The selection of
Mr. Townshend, at this important epoch in his party's his-
tory, for so responsible a position, was the highest testimony
which could be given to his ability and his integrity. It is
needless to add that he was elected. He proved wortliy of
the important trust confided to him, and was continued in
Congress until the day of his death. He had at that time
completed six terms of service and liad entered on the
seventh. He enjoyed the confidence of his constituents to
the fullest extent, and, had he lived, would undoubtedly
have remained in Congress as long as he desired to do so.
His service in this House has been important and valuable
t(j the country. His committee assignments attest the high
H. Mis. 202 4
50 Address of Mr. Springer, of Illinois, on the
appreciation of his ability by the Speakers and the House.
In the Forty-fifth Congress, the first in which he served, he
was assigned to the Committees on Patents and Private
Land Claims ; in the Forty-sixth, to the Committees on
Patents, the Revision of the Laws, and to the chairman-
ship of the Committee on Exijenditures in the Navy De-
partment ; in the Forty-seventli Congress, to the Committee
on the Judiciary; in the Forty-eighth and Foi-ty-ninth
Congresses, to the Committee on Appropriations; and in
the Fiftieth Congress, to the chairmanship of the Commit-
tee on Military Affairs.
While a member of the Appropriations Committee he was
chairman of the subcommittee on the Army appropriation
bill, and his earnest and able services on this committee and
on the Military Committee are remembered and appreciated
by those who served in the House at that time. He was al-
ways deeply interested in the measures under liis manage-
ment, and was quick to repel assaults and fearless in defense
of the action of his committee. He did not hesitate to attack
his assailants, whether on his side of the House or on the
other. But he did not indulge in denunciations, but hurled
his facts and arguments at his opponents with a zeal and
force that never failed to conv^ince the House of the sincerity
of his purpose.
While in the heat of debate he apjjeared at tiriies as if
moved by passion, yet he preserved the proprieties of debate,
and never carried or treasured up personal resentments. His
earnestness in debate evinced his integrity and the deejj
conviction of the justness of his cause. But socially his
amiability and good nature won for him the good will and
confidence of all who knew him. He was the soul of honor.
He was incapable of doing a mean thing. He was kind to a
fault, and lost no opportunity to serve his friends or respond
Life and Character of Richard W. Tozvushcnd. 51
to the demands of his constituents. His correspondence was
very large, and generally carried on by himself witliout the
aid of a clerk. He was a hard workei-.
Every request from his constituents was granted promptly
and witliout waiting to be called upon. He flooded his dis-
trict with documents, speeches, and otiicial reports. He be-
lieved in furnishing information to the people on all the
great measures pending in Congress. Upon the adjourn-
ment of each session he repaired to his home in Illinois and
devoted his time to public speaking in his district or in per-
sonal \'isits to friends in the several counties. His whole
time, while in Congress, was given to the public service.
In his doinestic relations he was mo.st happily- situated.
His faithful wife and affectionate children made his home
attractive and inspired him with a laudable ambition to earn
a reputation and leave behind him a name which they would
delight to honor. He was attentive to their every want,
and naught ever occurred to mar the happiness or disturb
the sweet simplicity of wedded love. They were all in love
with each other, and exemplified that fact in every word,
thought, and act. In their great grief at his untimely
death there must be some consolation in the reflection that
in his lifetime there was no unpleasant inemories to disturb
their minds or unkind words to add new pangs. On the
contrary, his very name is dear to them; his memory will
bring back the happiness of the past and will strew with
flowers the desolate paths of the future.
To me Mr. Townshend's death is a personal loss as well
as a great bereavement. He was my friend. We counseled
with each other, we worked together, we sympathized with
each other in defeat, and rejoiced together in success. I
never could quite understand the mysterious providence
which called him hence at a time when he could accomplish
52 Address of Mr. Springer, of Iliiitois.
so much for the betterineut of mankind and for tlie good of
his country. But it is not necessary that I sliould under-
God moves in a mysterious way
His wonders to perform.
He permits tyrants to be exalted upon thrones and per-
mits His saints to be led to the block. He cuts down the
great and good in the midst of their usefulness and permits
the wicked to multiply their days. But His infinite wisdom
is not to be measured by our ignorance. His designs are
not to be criticised by our feeble minds. As well might we
attempt to "bind the sweet influences of Pleiades, or loose
the bands of Orion.'" It is enough for us to know that He
that created the universe and guides the stars in their course,
that counts the hairs of our head and notes the sparrow's
fall, will order and direct our ways so as best to accomplish
His purpose. He has seen fit to take from us, from his fam-
ily, from his constituents, and from his coimtry, one whom
we all loved and honored and whose death we all deplore. But
to him who lives, as did our deceased friend, an iipright life,
death has no terrors and can not destroy. He still lives in
the hearts of his countrymen, in the sacred memory of his
wife and children, in the bosom of his God.
The question being taken on agreeing to the resolutions
submitted by Mr. Williams, of Illinois, they were unani-
And theii, on motion of Mr. Williams, of Illinois, the
PROCEEDINGS IN THE SENATE.,
December 10. 1889.
Mr. CULLOM. I ask that the resohitions of the House of
Kepresentatives in reference to the death of Hon. Richard
W. TowNSHEND, late a member of the House of Repre-
sentatives, be read.
The Vice President. The Chair lays before the Senate
the resolutions referred to, which will be read.
The Chief Clerk read as follows:
Ix THE House of Represent ATrvES, December 18, 1889.
Resolved, That this House has heard with profound sorrow the an-
nouncement of the death of Hon. Richakd W. Townshexd, late a Repre-
sentative from the State of Illinois:
That in.the death of Mr. Townshend the country lost a patriotic citizen
and an able and faithful public servant;
That the Clerk transmit a copy of these resolutions to the family of the
deceased and commimicate the same to the Senate:
That as a further mark of respect to the memory of the deceased this
House do now adjourn.
Mr. CuLLOM submitted the following resolutions; which
Resolved, That the Senate has lu'ard with profound sorrow the an-
nouncement of the death of Hon. RICHARD W. TowNSHEND, late a Repre-
sentative from the State of Illinois.
Resolved, That as a mark of respect to the memory of the deceased the
Senate do now adjourn.
The Vice-President (at 4 o'clock and 25 minutes p. m.).
The Senate stands adjourned until to-morrow, Friday. De-
cember 20, at 12 o'clock meridian.
5^ Proceedings in the Senate.
March U, 1890.
Mr. CuLLOM, of Illinois. I desire to call up the resolu-
tions of the House of Representatives in relation to the
death of the late Mr. Townshend, of my State.
The PRE.SIDING Officer. The Chief Clerk will read the
resolutions of the House of Representatives.
The Chief Clerk read as follows:
In the House of Representatives, Febrnon/ 15. 1890.
Resolved, That the business of the House be now suspended that
approjiriate honors may be paid to the memory of Hon. Richard Wel-
lington Townshend. late a Representative in Congre.ss from the State of
Illinois. That in the death of Mr. Townshend his district and State
lost an able and faithful public servant and tlie coimtry a legislator and
statesman who stood high in its councils.
That as a further mark of respect to the memory of the deceased tlie
House, at tlie conclusion of these ceremonies, shall adjourn.
That the Clerk transmit a copy of these resolutions to the Senate.
Mr. CuLLOM. I offer the resolutions I send to the desk
for consideration and adoption.
The Presidixg Officer. The resolutions will be read.
The Chief Clerk read as follows:
Resolved, That the Senate shires with the House of Representatives in
its expressions of sorrow at the death of Hon. Richard W. Townshend,
late a Representative in that body from the State of Illinois.
Resolved. Tliat as a mark of sympathy toward the family of the de-
ceased the Secretary of the Senate be directed to transmit to them a copy
of these proceedings.
Life and Character of Richard U: Toivnshcnd. 55
ADDRESS OF MR. CULLOM, OF ILLINOIS.
Mr. President: I ask the attention of the Senate while I
submit some remarks appropriate to the occasion suggested
by the resolution just read. We are again called upon to
pay our tribute of respect to the memory of a deceased mem-
ber of Congress, Richard Wellington Townshend, a Rep-
resentative from the State of Illinois. It is fitting that the
Senate shall pause from its ordinary labors and express its
appreciation of the life and character of the deceased.
Mr. President, the death-roll of the present Congress has
been unusually large, and. in language not to be misunder-
stood, reminds us '• that in the midst of life we are in death."
Richard W. Townshend, whose death we mourn to-day.
was born in Prince George's County, Md., April 30, 1840, and
died in this city March 9, 1S89, being nearly forty-nine years
old, having scarcely reached the zenith of his manhood.
In early youth, while yet a boy. an orphan boy. he came
to this city, where he attended the schools, and for a time
was a page-boy in the House of Representatives, of which
body he subsequently became, and continued for many years,
a distinguished member. While young Townshend was a
page in the House. S. S. Marshall, then an honored mem-
ber from Illinois and now an honored citizen of tliat great
Commonwealth, became attached to him and advised him to
go to Illinois, which he did in 1858. There he taught school
for a time, and finally studied law in the judge's law office.
He was subsequently licensed to practice law, was soon
elected clerk of the circuit court, afterwards elected prose-
cuting attorney for the judicial circuit in which he lived,
and became known as an able lawyer und prosecutoi'.
56 Address of Mr. Ciillom^ of Illinois., on tJie
In those days, when the State was less densely populated,
a judicial circuit conijirised many more counties than now,
and the ability and valuable services of Mr. Townshend in
protecting the peace and good order of the people made hhn
a tower of strength in his section.
He was always an uncompromising Democrat, and was
ready to defend his party and its principles and policies on
any proper occasion. He was a man of courage, was honest
in what he avowed, and was therefore aggressive in dealing
with his ijolitical enemies. He held various positions at the
hands of his political friends before he was elected to Con-
gi'ess. As I have said, he was circuit clerk, prosecuting at-
torney, and was also long a member of the Democratic State
committee, and once or more a delegate to the Democratic
national convention. He was prominent in the councils of
his party because he was recognized as wise and sagacious as
a leader. In ]S7G his career as a member of Congress began,
by his election in his district, in which he was elected sis
successive times, the last time in 1888. In all this period of
service he grew more and more in public favor, and stronger
as a legislator and in the e.steem of his colleagues and all
who knew him.
Mr. President, there have been few public men so devoted
to the interests of the people of their districts as was he:
never tiring, always on the alert, ever watchful, ever toiling,
to work for his constituents was to him absolutely a labor of
love. He was an honest, generous, able man, sincere in his
convictions and strong in his adherence to what he believed.
Under our constitutional Government the Senators and Rep-
resentatives bring from their several States and districts the
sentiments, views, and expressed desires of the people they
most directly rej^resent touching national affairs and national
legislation, and by so doing a consensus of public opinion of
Life and Character of Richard IF. Tcra'tishend. 57
every section is voiced in our legislative action as nearly as
may be, and it is true more exactly, perhaps, in the House
of Representatives than in the Senate. Towxshend always
sought to reflect in liis legislative action what he believed
was the voice of a majority of his people at home, and such
a course made him strong. lu a government by the people
the duty of their representatives, either in this body or the
other branch of Congress, is to represent and carry out the
wishes of the people, so far as the Constitution will permit.
Mr. TowxsHEND acted upon that idea, that it was his diity
as a Representative elected by the people of his district to
come here and faithfully, honestly, and devotedly carry out
their wishes so far as he was able to do.
It was my good fortune to be somewhat intimately
acquainted with Mr. Townshend for many years. As a
citizen, as a lawyer, and as a public servant, he was faithful
in all the relations of life.
It is a solemn duty to pay the last tribute to our departed
friends who have been identified with us in the performance
of any public trust. I think that the bond of friendship
becomes stronger between men who share the resi)onsibility
of i)ublic duty together tlian it does between men in the
common walks of life. The attachment that grows and
strengthens with years between men who have been in the
Army and stood shoulder to shoulder in battle becomes
strong and undying as life itself; so, perhaps, in a less
degree do the friendships become strong between men
thrown together in the discharge of public duty in civil
Mr. Townshend's services as a member of Congress were
valuable, and were more and more appreciated from year to
year. A reference to the record of the Congresses in which
he was a member shows that at each succeeding Congress
58 Address of Mr. CuUow^ of Illinois, on Ihc
greater responsibilities and more onerous duties were placed
upon him by the body to which he belonged. He was a
member of many important committees at different times,
such as tlie Judiciary and Appropriati(jns, and during the
last Congress, if not in more than one Congress, was chair-
man of the Committee on Military Affairs. He took great
pride in the latter position, and was liberal in his considera-
tion of the needs of the Army, and appreciated its important
relation to the Government. He was greatly interested in
the National Military School at West Point, where, as
members of the Board of Visitors, we met with others but
a few years ago to investigate its condition and needs.
He was greatly interested in and strongly advocated the
congress of the American States which is now in session in
this city and which I trust and believe will result in binding
together socially, commercially, and politically the people
of the United States, the Republic of Mexico, and all the
States of Central and South America.
I can not undertake, on an occasion like this. Mr. Presi-
dent, to make even a passing reference to the many meas-
ures of imblic utility with which 3Ir. Towxshend was
closely identified. On the 9th of March last, now a few
days more than one year ago, his labors, struggles, and con-
flicts ended, and he passed forever from sight. His work
was done, he finished his course, and he has gone, I trust.
where suffering and conflict are no more.
Mr. President, these sad occasions seem to occur so often
in Congress that we are apt to pass over them lightly. The
Senate will be called upon to pause several times before this
session closes to pay tribute to those who were elected to the
present Congress and who have passed away: Cox, that bril-
liant leader of the Democratic side of the House and friend
to humanity in the broadest sense, is gone; Kelley, that
Life and CJiaractcr of Richard U\ Toiviislicnd. 59
great advocate of protection to American labor and indus-
try, has gone; Newton W. Nutting, of New York; James
Laird, of Nebraska; and Edward J. Gay, of Louisiana,
have passed away, making six in number tlius early in the
present Congress who were elected to it and are now no
Such occasions are solemn, Mr. President, and to me the
more often they occur the more startling and solemn they
seem. Mr. Townshend was a man of great social qualities.
He was fond of his friends and to have them around him. He
was kindly and friendly in his nature and souglit to make
all his friends. He was a devoted husband, and loved liis
children as the apple of his eye. He left behind a heart-
broken wife, a grown soji, and a beautiful, loving daughter.
Mr. President, I have sometimes thought that death would
have comi^aratively few terrors, so far as this world is con-
cerned, if we wei'e not so dependent uijon each other. The
happiness of one depends upon others ; so the life of this
stricken family household — widow, son. and daughter —
seems euA^eloped in gloom and darkness since the hi;sband
and father died. He was their head, their pride, their life.
He is gone; peace to his ashes !
ADDRESS OF MR. VEST, OF MISSOURI.
Mr. President: The insoluble mystery of death again con-
fronts us. In its presence rhetoric loses its charm and logic
reaches no conclusion.
It has been said that the greatest terror in death is the
dread of annihilation; but more terrible than this is the
absolute isolation of the grave. Every man must die alone.
60 Address of Mr. I'cs/, of Missouri^ on the
When we pass tlii'oiigh that shadowy portal no human voice
can cheer ns upon the dark pathway, no caressing hand can
lead or assist; we must make that journey alone.
Sir. in the presence of the profound mystery and the
tragedy that ends a human life, with all its passions and,
temptations and sorrows and joys, in the presence of the
fact that we know so little why that life began and know so
little why that life has ended, exaggerated encomium is as
futile and as out of i:)lace as criticism or censure.
My acquaintance with Richard W. Townshend began
eleven years ago, when I entered the Senate. We were from
the same section of the country. I afterwards came to
know him well, and he impressed me as a strong, earnest,
brave man, with large heart and large brain. He was
devoted to the district he represented, and understood fully
all the wants of its people. He was a typical Western Eep-
resentative, aggressive in debate, but kindly and generous
in word and deed. The constituents he represented were
composed of those sturdy, self-reliant, and independent men
of the prairies before whom no i:)ublic official either timid
or dishonest could survive. The i^roudest epitaph that I
could announce for him to-day is that for six consecutive
terms he possessed the absolute confidence of such a con-
In every home in southern Illinois the name of Dick
Townshend, as they loved to call him, is to-day a house-
hold word. He was a perfectly natural man. Children
came to him at sight and nestled in his arms as if he were
an old and familiar friend. To the poor, the oppressed, the
unfortunate, he was tender and patient. If all those to
whom he spoke kindly words and for whom he did kindly
acts were gathered together it would be a vast multitude,
and if each of those who were happier by reason of his life
Life atid Character of Ricluxrd \]\ Toicnshcnd. 61
could cast oue leaf u^Jon his grave he would sleej) now be-
ueatli a wilderness of foliage.
Sir, compared with this, how poor a monument of granite
or a shaft of spotless marble I His place in the councils of
the nation is worthily filled, but his place in the hearts of
the thousands who loved him will be vacant until they, too,
shall have passed through the ever-open gates of the silent
ADDRESS OF Mr, Hale, of Maine.
Mr. President: My acq^^aintance with Mr. Towxshexd
began with the Forty-fifth Congress, in the House of Rep-
resentatives, of which he and I were tlien members.
He was new in service and young in years for the House,
but he soon attracted my attention, as he did that of old
members, and he immediately made friends there, who after-
wards watched with satisfaction his constant increase in
power and influence in the body.
His mental and pliysical organization was such that wliile
he was imusnally clear and direct and persistent in his course
upon subjects where he took special interest in legislation,
his nature was so affectionate and his ways were so pleasant
that all who were associated with him felt an interest in his
He had both boldness and ambition, and these pushed
liini on, but he constantly inci'eased in mental stature, and
whenever I met him I was imjn'essed with the growth in
the reach of his mind.
His industry was so patent that all wliu have spoken of
him have made mention of it; and in the great work wliich the
House of Representatives performs he bore a more and more
conspicuous part. His service upon important committees
Address of Air. Hale, of Maine, on (he
there shows the estimation in whicli lie was held, and the
people whom he served attested their confidence in him by
giving him what few men have ever had in this country,
seven successive elections.
I can well believe that sadness pervaded his district, Mr.
President, when the people heard of their great loss and knew
that the man who had so faithfully and ably represented
them had been cut down in his prime.
To all appearance one month before his death Mr. Town-
SHEND might count upon a most enviable future public life.
He had an admiring, unquestioning constituency. He had
laid broad and deep the foundations for wide influence
in Congress. He was a man of the people and trusted by
the people. He had filled his mind with special knowledge
derived from close study into social, economic, and financial'
Ciuestions, and had broadened it by wide general reading.
To the ordinary view few men had better promise of a
far-reaching political career, crowned with the Republic's
higher honors; but no man. Mr. President, with whatever
'•eagle eyes" he may ".stare" at the ocean of the future
can tell when his voyage there may be interrupted. He of
whom we speak to-day was suddenly snatched from his high
vantage ground, and in what we call his untimely eclipse
went out whatever there might have been for him otherwise
of honor or glory to come.
He only heard Fame's thunders wake.
His friends love to think of him and his genial ways and
kindly deeds. Those nearest and dearest to him will never
lose the sad pleasure which comes from the recollection of
scenes brightened by love.
All of us who met him here in public or private life,
especially the members of that great body where he took so
Life and Character of Richard W. To'wiisheiid.
active a part, will miss him loug, and long regret him.
During the fourteen years over which my acquaintance
with Mr. TowxsHEND extended, every incident of our inter-
course has left with me nothing but pleasant memories, and
my brief tribute to his merit is most sincerely given.
ADDRESS OF Mr. Jones, of Arkansas,
Mr. President : Upon occasions like this, when the
usiial course of public business is suspended, and for a time
the important public interests and the political demands of
a great nation are laid aside, and the representatives of peo-
ple and of States assemble to pay the last sad tribute of
respect to one who was of us, but who is not, and to solemnly
bear public testimony to his worth and merit to the end .
that those who come after us may know that we were not
unmindful of his public services and private virtues, we are
forcibly reminded that —
To our graves we walk
In the thick foot-prints of departed men.
To one to whom life offers nothing, for whom disappoint-
' ment has blasted hope, in whose bosom ambition is dead,
or to one who is compelled todragoiitan existence rendered
miserable by misfortune or disease, for whom no loving
hands smooth the rough places of life, for whom there is no
rest, no peace, the grave is doubtless welcome, and that —
Sinless, stirless rest.
That change which never clianges —
is a merciful release, a hapjiy dispensation for him, and a
calamity to no one. But to one in the prime and vigor of
mature manhood : in the full enjoyment of his matured but
scarcely ripened powers ; just in the summer and approach-
64 Address of Aft: Jones, of Arkansas, on (he
ing the autuuiii of his life, when tlie riijening fruits of liis
years of toil are about to be garnered ; blessed by Provi-
dence with a happy family, the pride of his life and the
solace of his heart ; full of hope and ambition for his coun-
try, his family, and himself, to be suddenly cut off is terri-
ble and makes those who witness it to shudder. Such was.
the life and death of Mr. Townshend.
Few men had more to live for or a better right to expect
many years of success, prosperity, and happiness. No
thought of his early departure from the walks of life en-
tered the minds of those who knew- him, and the sad an-
nouncement that he had "gone from the earth forever," was
a shock to every one of his hosts of friends.
Such things bring home to us all with crushing force the
vanity of all human calculations, but —
Men drop so fast ere life's mid stage of life we tread
Few know so many frietids alive as dead.
Even in this world, however —
We live in deeds, not years; in thoughts, not breaths;
In feeUngs, not in figures on a dial.
We should count time by heart throbs. He most lives
Who thinks most, feels the noblest, acts the best.
Measured l)y this standard, the life of Mr. Town.shend
filled a larger space than that allotted to nio-t men.
The very first day of my exjjerience in Congress, amid the
bustle and confusion incident to the organization of the
House of Representatives, in the wilderness of strange
faces and the stirring scenes of such an occasion, my atten-
tion was attracted to him, and though I at the time had no
idea who he was, I never lost sight of him afterward.
Fearless and aggressive in the advocacy of the right as he
saw it, he ne^'or occujned a doubtful position, but boldly and
effectively presented his views whenever occasion required.
Life am/ Character of Richard II '. To-iOisIiciid. 65
Keenly attentive to the current of public affairs liere and
abroad, he was a valuable and conspicuous representative of
JbB jjeople, and the esteem in which his qualities and endow-
ments were held by his associates in the House is indicated
by tlie fact that while Hon. Samuel J. Randall was chair-
man I if the Committee on Appropriations he always had Jlr.
TowN-jHEXD associated with him upon that most imijortant
; ■ responsible committee. A ready debater, a hard worker,
Miiiliar with the whole current of public affairs, he was
usteil and relied upon by his committee in all their con-
\ I ;)on the floor. He left his impress upon jjublic affairs,
■■1 of his work as a i)ublic man which is an honor to
his State, and his constituents, and which is a rich
' to his family; but the distinction which he would
■I ha\-e prized most, of which he would himself have
lie proudest, is the sincere love and affection for him and
.lemory which warms the hearts of those amongst wjiom
• 1. fi' whom he was best known, and to whose service
( i his life. In the long years to come his name and
ly will be remembei'ed and cherished by thousands
'X friends and admirers in his far-away praii-ie home.
lit- 1 have had so deep and firm a hold on the confi-
' ticir constituents as he. Coupled with the qualities
i.-tinguished him as a public man he had personal
which bound him as with ••hooks of steel "" to those
:new him best. I often had occasion \o notice his
>>us and kindly demeanor towards those occupying the
l'>wly walks of life, and no man was freer than he from
characteristic of ignoble men. sei-vility to place and
•r and arrogance towards the humble and lowly; but,
ig a thorough man of the people, he saw and respected
ujan, in utter disregard of the trappings of position or
dra-wbacks of a humble station. I happen to know how
H. M-:. -JO-? 5
♦iS Address of Mr. Jones, ofArka^. r^ f.
uijon an occasion he won the admiration an sincere esteem
of an old lady traveling a long distance alon. '\:x his constant,
delicate, and coiirteous attentions. She ne^•l•!• I'orgot him or
liis thoiightful kindness to her, and she ne^ ■ ; -will.
His accurate knowledge of what Mr. Lin( 'In called "o
plain, common people," his familiarity wit ^ i heir domes!
life, with tlieii' hopes and fears, his intimai Imow-ledge of
their struggles and their hardships, and h i.nnd sin-
cere sympathy with them in all these won l : i h ■ ; .
in tlu'ir love and confidence which he enjo,\', .. ;Urou"-h
and which will '''keep his memory green" jilt.i- ileath.
To one whose life was thus devoted to the j t of hjf '■ -
low-men in every public duty and whose j'^ i ite life :
daily walk were marked by words of good cli v to the f.
hearted and deeds of unselfishness to all, out ' i, in a '
devoted himself to the good of his fellow-m
There is no death. What seems so is trai . i :
This life of mortal breath
*Is but a suburb of the life elysian
Whose portal we call death.
The Presiding Officer. The question v. .,a. agreeii:
the resolutions submitted by the Senator from IltiiitTii*^
The resolutions were agreed to unanimously.
Mr. UuLLOM. I move as a further mark of respect tc. . ia.
memory of the deceased that the Senate do now adj';uru.
The motion was agreed to unanimouslj^ : and the Sen ^i
adjourned until Monday, March 17, 1890, a' ii o'ci
( D /I !ir