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S. 6. and E. L. ELBERT 






c^-// r: 






Tros Tyriusque mihi nullo discrimine agetur. 


549 & 551 BROADWAY. 





JANUARY, 1879. 

Abt. Page 

I. The Fishery Award. By Senator George F. Ed- 
munds ...... 

n. Unpublished Fragments op the " Little " Period 
By Thomas Moore .... 

in. Cities as Units in our Polity. By William R 
Martin ..... 

TV. The Preservation of Forests. By Felix L. Os 

WALD ...... 

V. The *' Solid South." By Henry Watterson 




VI. The Pronunciation of the Latin Language. By 

W. W. Story 59 

YII. Substance and Shadow in Finance. By George 

S. BOUTWELL . . . . . .74 

VIII. The Cruise of the Florence. By Captain H. W. 

HOWGATE . . . . . .86 

IX. Recent Fiction: Trollope's Is he Popenjoy ? James's 
The Europeans ; James's Daisy Miller ; Black's Mac- 
leod of Dare ; Burnett's That Lass o' Lowrie's. By 
Richard Grant White . . . .97 

Publications Received . . . .111 

The Editor disclaims responsibility for the opinions 
of contributors, wbetlier their articles are signed or 



The Fishery Award. By George F. Edmunds, U. S. Sen- 
ator 1 

Unpublished Fragments of the " Little " Period. By 

Thomas Moore 15 

Cities as Units in our Polity. By William R. Martin 21 

The Preservation of Forests. By Felix L. Oswald, M. D. 35 

The " Solid South." By Henry TVatterson . . .47 

The Pronunciation of the Latin Language. By W. W. 

Story 59 

Substance and Shadow in Finance. By George S. Bout- 
well 74 

The Cruise of the Florence. By Captain H. W. Howgate, 

U. S. Army 86 

Recent Fiction : Trollope's Is he Popinjoy ? James's The 
Europeans ; James's Daisy Miller ; Black's Macleod of 
Dare ; Burnett's That Lass o' Lowrie's. By Richard 
Grant White 97 

Publications Received Ill 

The Conduct of Business in Congress. By G. F. Hoar, 

U. S. Senator 113 

The Mysteries of American Railroad Accounting. By 

an Accountant 135 

A Statesman of the Colonial Era. By General Richard 

Taylor 148 



Recoi^stkuction and the Negro. By D. H. Chamberlain 161 

The Empire of the Discontented. By a Russian Nihilist 174 

The Scientific Work of the Howgate Expedition. By 

O. T. Sherman, Meteorologist in charge .... 191 

Sensationalism in the Pulpit. By the Rev. William M. 

Taylor, D.D. . 201 

Medieval French Literature : Histoire de la Langue et 
de la Litterature Fran9aise au Moyen Age ; Les Epopees 
Fran9aises ; Le Drame Chretien au Moyen Age ; Les 
Prophetes du Christ ; Guillaume de Palerne ; Les Sept 
Sages de Rome ; Miracles de Nostre Dame ; Aiol. By 
Professor T. F. Crane 212 

Publications Received 221 

Ought the Negro to be Disfranchised ? Ought he to 
have been Enfranchised ? By James G. Blaine, U. S. 
Senator; L. Q. C. Lamar, U. S. Senator; Wade Hampton, 
Governor of South Carolina; General James A. Garfield; 
Alexander H. Stephens ; Wendell Phillips ; Mont- 
gomery Blair ; Thomas A. Hendricks . . . 225 

The Philosophy of Jonathan Edwards. By Professor 

George P. Fisher, D. D 284 

The Indian Problem. By General Nelson A. Miles, U. S. 

Army 304 

Cryptography in Politics. By John R. G. Hassard . 315 

Russian Novels and Novelists of the Day : The Diary of 
a Sportsman, and other Novels ; Smoke : a Novel ; Virgin 
Soil : a Novel ; Childhood and Youth ; War and Peace ; 
Anna Karenina : a Novel. By S. E. Shevitch . . 326 

Publications Received 335 

Retribution in Politics. By Thomas A. Hendricks . 337 

The Public Schools of England. By Thomas Hughes, Q. C. 352 



German Socialism in America 372 

A Friend of Lord Byron. By Henry James, Jr. . . 388 

' The Census of 1880. By George Walker . . .393 

The Pronunciation of the Latin Language. Part IL By 

W. W. Story 405 

An Indian's Views of Indian Affairs. By Young Joseph, 
Chief of the Nez Perces. AVith an Introduction by the 
Right Rev. W. II. Hare, D. D 412 

Hartmann's ** Religion of the Future." By M. A. Har- 

DAKER .......... 434 

Recent Miscellaneous Literature : Weisse's Origin, 
Progress, and Destiny of the English Language and 
Literature ; Hohnes's John Lothrop Motley ; Conway's 
Demonology and Devil-Lore ; Mrs. Kemble's Record of a 
Girlhood ; Tyler's History of American Literature. By 
A. R. McDonougu 438 

Publications Received 446 

Our Election Laws. By George W. McCrary, Secretary 

of War of the L^uited States ...... 449 

Campaign Notes in Turkey, 1877-78. By Lieutenant F. 

V. Greene, U. S. Army 462 

German Socialism in America. 'Part II 481 

Absent Friends. By the Rev. O. B. Frothingham . . 493 

A Plea for Sport. By Lloyd S. Bryce . . . .511 

Notes on Recent Progress in Applied Science. By 

Henry Morton, Ph. D., President of Stevens Institute . 526 

Law and Design in Nature. By Simon Newcomb, LL. D. ; 
the Rev. Noah Porter, D. D., LL. D., President of Yale 
College ; the Rev. Joseph Cook ; the Rev. James Free- 
man Clarke, D. D. ; the Rev. James McCosh, D. D., 
LL. D., President of the College of New Jersey . . 537 



Publications Received 563 

MoN Testament, ^pitre a Chloe. An Unpublished Poem. 

By Francois Marie Arouet de Voltaire . . . 565 

National Appropriations and Misappropriations. By 

General J. A. Garfield 572 

The Stagnation of Trade and its Cause. By Professor 

BoNAMY Price 587 

The Education of Freedmen. By Harriet Beecher 

Stowe 605 

Secret Missions to San Domingo. By D. D. Porter, Ad- 
miral, TJ. S. Navy 616 

Sacred B©oks of the East. By Professor Max Muller . 631 

Evolution and Theology. A Rejoinder. By Professor 

Simon Newcomb 647 

The Pacific Railroad. By Henry V. Poor. . . . 664 

Current Literature. By Mayo W. Hazeltine . . 681 

Will England return to Protection? A Letter to the 

Editor. By the Right Honorable John Bright, M. P. . 695 

Publications Received 697 

Index 699 



JANUARY, 1879. 



The fishing riglits exercised by American citizens in the neigh- 
borhood of the eastern coast of British North America have been 
for nearly a century the subject of irritation and controversy be- 
tween the people.^ aiul governments of the two countries. Every 
effort to compose disputes and prevent diiiiculties has usually pro- 
duced only a fresh and copious crop of doubtful questions and new 
points of collision. 

At the peace of 1783 the banks of Newfoundland and the islands 
and coasts of the Gulf of St. Lawrence had been the common and 
productive fishing-ground of all his Majesty's northern colonies — 
chiefly indeed of those whose independence was acknowledged by 
the treaty of that year, for the population and enterprise of what 
are now known as the maritime provinces of Canada were then 
much less than those of New England and New York. By the 
third article of the treaty of 1783, then, it was agreed "that the 
people of the United States shall continue to enjoy unmolested the 
right to take fish of every kind on the Grand Bank and all the 
other banks of Newfoundland, also in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, 
and at all other places in the sea where the inhabitants of both 
countries used at any time heretofore to fish ; and also that the 
inhabitants of the United States shall have libeHy to take fish of 
every kind on such part of the coast of Newfoundland as British 
fishermen shall use (but not to dry or cure the same on that island), 

VOL. CXXVIII. — NO. 266. 1 


and also on the coasts, bays, and creeks of all other of his Britannic 
Majesty's dominions in America ; and that the American fishermen 
shall have liberty to dry and cure fish in any of the unsettled bays, 
harbors, and creeks of Nova Scotia, Magdalen Islands, and Labra- 
dor, so long as the same shall remain unsettled ; but so soon as the 
same or either of them shall be settled, it shall not be lawful for 
the said fishermen to dry or cure fish at such settlement, without a 
previous agreement for that purpose with the inhabitants, proprie- 
tors, or possessors of the ground." 

Thus the whole waters and shores of British North America, 
with a certain limitation as to Newfoundland, were open to the 
American fishermen. There was no exception of waters within the 
marine league from the shore, which marks the limit of territorial 
dominion. Wherever there was sea, there was the place of right- 
ful fishery. In like manner, and with the like exception, the use of 
the shores for curing and drying was secured, subject to the rights 
of private possessors. It would not be easy to find any general lan- 
guage that should establish a clearer or more definite right ; but the 
jealousy of British fishermen, beaten in the equal contest with the 
winds and waves and the erratic denizens of the sea on those drearv 
coasts, led British statesmen to find difficulties, and to maintain that 
the treaty was finally abrogated by the war of 1812, and not re- 
vived by the peace that followed it. So by the treaty of 1818 new 
provisions were made, by which, along certain parts of those coasts, 
the Americans were in terms excluded from fishing within the 
league line, and which defined by fixed bounds those parts of the 
coasts of Newfoundland and Labrador where the Americans could 
fish within it. Thus the United States " renounced " all the in- 
shore fisheries excepting the coasts of Newfoundland not occupied 
by the French fishermen, the Magdalen Islands, and that for the 
most of the year almost unapproachable shore of Labrador, extend- 
ing from Mount Joli, through the strait of Belle Isle, to the Arctic, 
where the most abundant products of nature are storms, fogs, ice- 
bergs, and floes, for a territorial definition on the Newfoundland 
coast, in the place of common fishery with the British, and for the 
right to dry and cure fish on the unappropriated shores of that 
island. The causes of " irritation and dispute " were to be removed 
by renouncing the larger part of American rights, the enjoyment 
of which produced them, and by the establishment of a new boun- 
dary to the enterprise and industry of American fishermen, not along 
shores whose location and identity could not be easily misunder- 


stood, "but upon a line of sea three miles from the coast — a line 
always indeterminable with precision by any means within the 
reach of the persons who are bound to respect it. Nevertheless, 
nearly forty y^ars passed by under this treaty without producing 
any insoluble difficulty of ultimate consequence between the two 
nations, although continuing to give rise to collisions, more or less 
serious, between the authorities and people of the Provinces and 
the fishermen of the United States, until the so-called reciprocity 
treaty of 1^54 came into force, which by its first and second articles 
provided for American fishing for ten years in the same waters (not 
naming Newfoundland and the Magdalen Islands, where the right 
already existed), without regard to distance from the shore, but 
with the exception of certain places to be ascertained by a commis- 
sion and umpire. This arrangement terminated in 1865, under 
notice from the United States for that purpose ; it having been 
found by experience that the treaty as a whole was made to operate 
greatly to the disadvantage of the United States. Whatever of 
conflict existed before was of course revived, when her Majesty's 
Government made use of those collisions as an indirect and con- 
venient means of opening for discussion and settlement the great 
affair of the depredations upon American commerce by cruisers 
built and fitted out in her ports, manned chiefly by inhabitants of 
her territory, and sailing under the Confederate flag. 

Negotiations thus introduced ended in the treaty of Washino-ton 
of 1871. Every matter of difference between the two nations was 
agreed to be submitted to the decision of the various tribunals cre- 
ated and described. We have now only to deal with the provisions 
of that treaty on the fisheries question, though it is not easily for- 
gotten that, in the face of the most comprehensive and general lan- 
guage, the Government of Great Britain, exercising a right she un- 
doubtedly possessed, and one which the United States might have 
exercised as well in the Halifax affair, refused to proceed w^th the 
Geneva arbitration until all claim for a certain class of injuries, which 
were in one point of view the most serious and important of all, had 
been taken out of the consideration of the tribunal to which, it ap- 
peared plain to the United States, everything had been submitted. 

The fisheries articles of this treaty are the eighteenth to the 
twenty-fifth inclusive, and the thirty-second and thirty-third. The 
eighteenth purports to grant privileges additional to those of the 
treaty of 1818 by obliterating the three-mile line on the coasts of 
Quebec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward's Island, 


and to grant, subject to private rights, landing privileges for curing 
and drying fish upon all their shores. The nineteenth gives British 
fishermen the same rights in American waters north of latitude 39°. 
The twentieth provides for commissioners and an umpire to decide 
upon the excepted places. The twenty-first allows free trade in fish 
and oil. The twenty-second recites that " it is asserted by the 
Government of her Britannic Majesty that the privileges accorded 
to the citizens of the United States under Article XYIII. of this 
treaty are of greater value than those accorded by Articles XIX. 
and XXI. of this treaty to the subjects of her Britannic Majesty," 
and provides that *' commissioners " shall be appointed to determine 
the amount of any compensation which in " their opinion " ought to 
be paid by the United States therefor ; and that any sum of money 
which " the said commissioners " may award shall be paid within 
twelve months. The twenty-third provides for the selection and 
meeting of the three commissioners. The twenty-fourth provides 
for the mode of procedure, limit of time, etc., and that '* the com- 
missioners shall be requested to give their award as soon as possi- 
ble." The twenty-fifth also regulates procedure, etc. The thirty- 
second puts Newfoundland, in a certain contingency, under the 
operation of the eighteenth, and the thirty-third fixes ten years, and 
two years after notice, for the termination of the arrangement. 

It will be seen from the language of all the treaty provisions be- 
tween the two countries upon the fisheries, that no permanent gain 
for American interests has been made since the treaty of 1783. 
While the line of demarkation has been moved offshore and in- 
shore, the obliteration of one point of collision and dispute has ap- 
parently produced one or more others equally troublesome. 

What the treaty of 1871 gave to the United States that they 
were not entitled to under that of 1818 was in substance : first, the 
removal of the three-mile limit in respect of the Provinces of Que- 
bec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward's Island, and 
such part of Newfoundland as was not covered by French rights 
and the treaty of 1818 ; second, the right to land and cure fish on 
those shores and the Magdalen Islands, where no private rights or 
occupation of British fishermen should exist. That was all. But 
almost every mile of the shores of those provinces, excepting cer- 
tain parts of Newfoundland and the Magdalen Islands, has come 
into the possession of settlers and local fishermen. It is indeed 
chiefly the shore lines that in the best fishing regions are settled at 
all. A girdle of exclusion has thus, consistently with the treaty, 


come into existence, that must for all practical purposes keep Amer- 
ican tisherraen afloat unless they purchase landing privileges, which 
they might do without a treaty. The provisions of this last treaty 
were "in ad<lition " to those of 1818, and so added little as to New- 
foundland, and did not touch the Labrador fishing at all ; and as to 
the Magdalen Islands, it only secured the right of landing to cure 
fish, subject to the private rights, etc., before mentioned. A study 
of the population and shore development of the coasts and islands 
to which the treaty of 1H71 admits American fishermen, or a single 
trip upcm the steamers that in the summer season ply along and 
among them all, will show that the landing rights thus secured are 
substantially of little imi)ortance ; and every year of prosperity in 
the maritime provinces will, of course, make them less so by still 
further settlements along the shores, and the increased occupation of 
the best shore-tishing stations by resident British fishermen. 

Although it apj)ears as nearly certain, from all the evidence 
before the Halifax Commission, as any such matter can be, that the 
value of the privileges ac({uired by the Americans was not greater, 
certainly, than those acquired by the British, yet it is plain that the 
shore line, as a boundary of right, is far better than the invisible 
one three miles at sea, even though the space between contain no 
valuable fishing ; for no misunderstanding can arise as to any trans- 
gression of the boundary. But this is, of course, of equal advan- 
tage to both countries, for it tends to peace and mutual good will, 
to which no preponderance of monpy value can be attributed. The 
rightful power of the United States, however, to protect their fisher- 
men by force against unlawful interference on the high seas, might 
not exist on waters within the territorial jurisdiction of Great Britain. 

The recent publication of the correspondence between the two 
governments will enable the reader, with the text of the treaty 
before cited, to form some opinion upon the question of valuation 
80 ably argued by Mr. Evarts, and so wisely avoided by Lord Salis- 
bury. But the American side must, we think, take two not unim- 
portant circumstances in connection with it as facts : First, that the 
thing the Americans obtained was a " privilege," the value of 
which, if it had any at all, must be measured by what a full use 
and the utmost reasonable diligence might get from it,, and not 
what may have been or may be actually obtained by a use and a 
diligence short of that. Second, that the value of such a privilege 
to catch fish on the inside of a certain arbitrary line in the sea is as 
much incapable of definite proof or ascertainment by any means or 


process known among men, as any that can be conceived. We may 
perhaps count or measure the sands upon a given section of coast, 
but we can not number or weigh the inhabitants of a single square 
mile of the sea, or attribute to inshore waters any definite propor- 
tion of the nomads of the great deep. 

It is perhaps not too much to say, then, that notwithstanding 
the extremely able and ingenious discussion in the letter of Mr. 
Evarts on the subject, it can not be demonstrated by proof or reason- 
ing that the award of Mr. Delfosse and Mr. Gait of $5,500,000 as 
the excess of the value of a chance in the Canadian waters over the 
value of a like chayice in American waters, and the free importation 
of fish and oil to American markets, was excessive ; but this very 
infirmity in the American argument should have been fatal to the 
British case, for it was the duty of that Government to prove 
affirmatively such claimed excess of value. Still less could it be 
maintained that an award, otherwise regular and fair, could be 
ignored on that ground. Indeed, it is hardly necessary to say thaj; 
Mr. Evarts does not so contend : he only appeals to the enlightened 
good sense of the other party to consider whether it ouglit to eat 
the fruit, sweet as it might be, of such wild guessing ; but it seems 
the other party did not wish to consider. 

The interests of peace and good will among nations are so tran- 
scendent, and the practice of international mediation and arbitra- 
tion is so essential to those interests, that a proud and self-respecting 
people would always submit to tUfe consequences of very great errors 
of judgment, and sometimes even to those of bias and prejudice in 
international arbitration, rather than to refuse to execute an award ; 
but it should be kept in mind that there are occasions when such 
obedience would be a crime against the true interests of peace and 
good neighborhood, and destructive of international arbitration as 
the best of their safeguards. If, as Yattel tersely states it, " the 
arbitrators, by pronouncing a sentence evidently unjust and unrea- 
sonable, should forfeit the character with which they are invested, 
their judgment would deserve no attention." A just nation, how- 
ever, in whose favor an award has been made, should be willing to 
forego the advantage of a victory on far less evident grounds than 
those which would justify a refusal by the losing party to perform, 
and to readjust and retry the matter in dispute, if it had reason to 
think that any serious error had been committed, or that anything 
of corruption or unfairness had played a part in the affair, for no 
honorable government could consent to profit by a success so gained. 


Upon such principles Congress at its last session authorized the 
President to reopen, if he should see cause, certain awards in favor 
of citizens of the United States against the republic of Mexico. 
The extravagance of the Halifax award does not, under the circum- 
stances, raise any implication, or even suspicion, of corruption or 
conscious partiality in the eminent gentlemen who made it. That 
they may have had an unconscious bias in favor of Great Britain is, 
when the relatitms of the governments and their people are consid- 
ered, quite jjrobable ; and a similar contrary bias may have existed 
with the American commissioner. i>ut that they placed little or 
no confidence in the evi<lence and contention as to value put for- 
ward on the British side is manifest. According to the British 
case and to Lord Salisbury's statement, the two concurring commis- 
sioners awarded only about one third what the proofs and argu- 
ments thereon ])urported to make out. The trouble was that the 
British assertion in the treaty of excess of money value of the fish- 
ing chance in question was one in its very nature incapable of that 
kind of proof which convinces the understanding. So Mr. Delfosse 
and his British associate must have thought, for they evidently 
failed to believe the British evidence as applied to the question. 
They, then, forgetting apparently that it was for Great Britain to 
make out its assertion of superior value, and that nothing could be 
found to exist that had not been proved, without disclosed or de- 
fined elements or computations, or declared bases or reasons, came 
to a given sum 3i& proved. Such a finding is of course as incapable 
of explanation as a verdict of a jury in those actions of tort where 
punitive or exemplary damages are allowable ; but the case at Hali- 
fax was not of that nature. It was, so far as any right of recovery 
could go, a question of measurable substance and not of sentiment. 

The sum awarded has been paid. It could not, within certain 
limits, be refused as excessive merely, for that, as Lord Salisbury 
observes, would be for the losing party to set up its own opinion 
against that of the commissioners on the very point submitted. It 
might, we think, have been lawfully and justly refused at first— but 
not at last — on the ground that, wanting the concurrence of one of 
the three commissioners, no award existed. But that question Mr. 
Evarts proposed to waive if, in the opinion of the British Govern- 
ment, there was a valid award ; and on that point the decision of 
Lord Salisbury was against him. 

That Congress, which under our system controls the issues of 
war, and to a large degree foreign intercourse, and can alone pro- 


vide the means of executing money treaties, should have transferred 
to the Executive the responsibility of determining whether there 
had been any award within the treaty, is, on principle, perhaps to 
be regretted ; but when it is considered, in view of the scrupulous 
delicacy the whole people as well as the Government felt in respect 
of declining to treat the Halifax decision as an award on their own 
judgment alone, however clear, it may be cause of congratulation 
that the question was left for diplomatic consideration, and, through 
it, to Great Britain itself. It might not be wise to resort to this 
process in all cases. Her Majesty's Government did not think so 
when it insisted that the American case presented at Geneva claimed 
compensation for matters not submitted to the tribunal. But in 
this particular instance it was possibly best, for the comedy of errors 
has been played harmoniously through all its acts, and is ended, 
and the diplomatic stage is clear for a different representation. 

Accepting with cheerfulness the foreseen consequences of the 
judgment which our Government has invoked on this last question 
of the existence of any award, its correctness may now be ques- 
tioned without exposure to the suspicion of a selfish desire to escape 
the payment of money. 

It may, we take it, be assumed that commissioners appointed 
under a treaty have only the faculties and powers imputed to them 
by the instrument of their appointment ; and that the meaning of 
that instrument is to be found in its language considered in the rela- 
tion of all its parts, and in the light of similar transactions between 
the same parties. Upon the mere grammatical meaning of the lan- 
guage in Articles XXII., XXIII., and XXIV., of 1871, it is pre- 
sumed that no one would deny that the matters in dispute were 
committed to the consideration and decision of all the three persons 
named, and not to a part of them. They are never named as a 
tribunal, or board even, but as " commissioners " — " one " to be 
named by the President of the United States, " one " by her Bri- 
tannic Majesty, and the " third " by a friendly power. " The com- 
missioners " are required to meet ; the case is to be submitted 
to the " commissioners " ; " the commissioners " are to " give 
their award." Such language can only mean, grammatically, all 
of the persons named. If it does not import all, it may as well 
mean one of them as two. Lord Salisbury endeavors to control 
this grammatical reading by the argument that it was an arbitra- 
tion " of a public nature," and so, as he thinks, within the rule of 
municipal law, both in England and America, that where the law 


creates a tribunal or board for public purposes connected with the 
administration of justice in any of its forms, the judgment of a 
majority is taken as the judgment of the body. But was this such 
a case V The two nations, in respect of the matter in difference, 
stood exactly like two persons in a state of nature. There was no 
tribunal, public or other, to which either could appeal. The treaty 
then was, as between them, a private agreement to submit the deter- 
mination of a dispute to three men. It was public only in the sense 
that it was a contract of two great public bodies, and that it involved 
the possilile payment of money from one to the other. The analogy 
with a statutory enactment, conferring powers upon a tribunal com- 
posed of many persons, does not then seem to hold. But let it be sup- 
posed that the treaty of Washington had been a statute of Great Brit- 
ain or the United States, to dispose of disputes between the people of 
either. We shouM then have had in the same act — first, for the Ala- 
bama claims, " a tribunal of arbitration," composed of five arbitra- 
tors, with the provision that " all questions considered by the tribu- 
nal, including the final award, shall be decided by a majority of all 
the arbitrators " ; second, for the Alabama claims in one event, " a 
board of conmiissioners," composed of three persons, with the pro- 
vision that "a majority of the commissioners in each case shall be- 
suilicient for a decision " ; third, for other claims arising during 
the rebellion, "three commissioners," with the provision that "a 
majority of the commissioners shall be sufficient for an award in 
each case " ; fourth, in respect of the location of excepted places in 
the fisheries, a "commission" composed of two persons, with the 
provision that " the commissioners shall name some third person to 
act as arbitrator or umpire in any case or cases in which they may 
thus differ in opinion " ; fifth, for the valuation of fishing privileges 
granted to the Americans, three " commissioners," with the provi- 
sion that " the commissioners " shall hear, etc., and that " the com- 
missioners " shall be requested to give "their award as soon as 
possible," etc. In such a case, would not a court of justice feel 
bound to decide that the legislative will did not intend to confer 
upon a ^:)ar^ of the three last-named commissioners any power of 
binding the parties against the judgment of the other ? Following 
acknowledged and universal principles in construing and applying 
written law, would not a court say that the same act in respect of 
the three separate subjects of dispute between the same parties has 
studiously provided that the views of the majority shall be valid ; 
and in respect of the fourth, on a difference of opinion, an umpire 


shall decide ; and in the fifth it has not conferred upon nor recog- 
nized the existence of any power in any other than all the persons 
to whom the duty was intrusted ; and that the affirmation of it in 
the four cases and the non-affirmation of it in the fifth would nega- 
tive such a power in the last case, even if, standing alone, it would 
have been held to exist ? 

But the treaty of Washington was a written agreement between 
two parties, and not a statute ; and the history and language of 
previous treaties between them may be justly resorted to to throw 
light upon a disputed interpretation. The fifth article of the treaty 
of 1794 provided for three commissioners to decide upon the river 
intended by the " St. Croix," named in the treaty of 1783, but it 
was silent as to the "power of a majority. The same treaty created 
five commissioners to ascertain certain damages to British subjects, 
and conferred decisive power upon three of them. It also estab- 
lished a similar commission of five to ascertain certain losses of 
Americans, and conferred full power upon a majority. Can it be 
doubted that in that case both governments intended, for obvious 
reasons, to make different and more elastic provisions respecting 
decisions touching private claims from those relating to their boun- 
daries ? The article as to the St. Croix was followed by Article V. 
of the treaty of Ghent on the same general subject, which provided 
for two commissioners and the umpirage of a friendly power. The 
treaty of 1822 created a commission to ascertain the value of slaves, 
etc., under the award of the Emperor of Russia, and provided for 
the decision of " the majority." The decision of the Emperor on 
the subject in dispute referred to him is worthy of notice, as declar- 
ing a wholesome rule in interpreting treaties. lie says that, with 
the concurrence of the two powers, he has " given an opinion found- 
ed solely upon the sense which results from the text of the article.'''' 
The claims treaty of 1853 provided for two commissioners and an 
umpire. The same was done on the fishery question in the treaty 
of 1854. By the slave-trade treaty of 1862 the judges of the mixed 
courts and the arbitrator were authorized to decide by a " majority 
of the three." It appears, then, from the history and language of 
the long series of treaties between the two governments, that they 
never treated upon the idea that by the rules of public law, as be- 
tween them, a majority of commissioners or arbitrators, or even of 
members of a court, had decisive powers unless the contrary was 
expressed ; and that, on the contrary, they had treated in confor- 
mity with the well-known rules of law of both countries, that the de- 


ciiiion of conventional arbitrators, commissioners, or courts must be 
unanimous to be valid, unless the instrument of their creation pro- 
vided otherwise ; and that, as in the article of the treaty of ISTl* 
respectini^ places excepted from fishery, when they were willing 
that a ditference between two commissioners of their own appoint- 
ment should be decided by a single other person or jjower, they 
knew how to say so, and did say so. 

The necessary limits of this article do not permit an extended dis- 
cussion of the questions of inconvenience and probable failure of a de- 
cision in such cases, were a majority not sutlicient, put forth by the 
liritish Government. It is sufficient to say that if they existed, they 
could not be allowed to subvert the clear meaning of the language of 
the treaty, and that experience has shown that in all cases that have 
rested uj)on definite j)rinciples and proofs, the concurrence of the com- 
missioners or ar))itrators of the two nations has usually been obtained ; 
while in a matter like that submitted to the Halifax commissioners, 
no prudent government would be willing to consent in advance to 
anything less than unanimity when the commissioners are only three. 
Such prudence, there is some reason to believe, was in the minds of 
the Hritish j)ublic and some officials before the commissioners acted. 

Lord Salisbury a])j)oars also to repose his belief in the efficacy 
of a majority on what he thinks to be rules of international law. 
It was competent for the treaty in this instance, as it did in some 
others, to make other provisions ; but it is hardly competent for 
either party to reverse the meaning of the treaty by invoking the 
law. Let us examine, however, exactly what the rule of interna- 
tional law is. Ilalleck, whose valuable book was, as he states, made 
up from notes and extracts, is quoted as follows : " The following 
rules, usually derived from the civil law, have been applied to inter- 
national arbitrations when not otherwise provided in the articles of 
the reference. If there be an uneven number, the decision of the ma- 
jority is conclusive." This maybe true. The rule named may have 
been so applied ; but under what circumstances ? Ileffter, the only 
wTiter cited by Halleck who refers to the point, states how and 
when such a rule is applied. He says (Bergson's French transla- 
tion of the third German edition, livre deuxieme, chap, i., sec. 109) : 
" Lorsque plusieurs arbitres ont ete nommes, sans que leurs fonc- 
tions respectives aient ete determinees d'avance, ils ne peuvent, sui- 
vant rintention presumee des parties, proceder separement. En cas 
de desaccord entre eux, I'avis de la majorite doit prevaloir, confor- 
moment aux prmcipes de la procedure ordinaire.'''' 


This is a statement to which every power ought to subscribe, 
for it rests on the solid principles of justice and philosophy, that 
require us to seek in the language of the instrument and the situa- 
tion of the parties their true intent ; and so, in a case in which they 
have not spoken, it is presumed that they intended that the ^^prin- 
ciples of ordinary procedure " should govern. What are the prin- 
ciples of ordinary procedure in arbitration ? In Germany, France, 
and other countries whose jurisprudence is founded on the Roman 
law, they are one thing — allowing a majority to decide. In Great 
Britain and the United States, where the common law prevails, 
they are and always have been the opposite — not allowing a ma- 
jority to decide without a stipulation to that end. Ilalleck's state- 
ment, then, is practically correct ; but the rule he lays down does 
not apply between all states, and the structure of his sentence does 
not import that it does so. Thus Heffter, the accuracy and preci- 
sion of whose writings has made his work a universal authority, 
states the complete rule. Bluntschli, also cited by Lord Salisbury 
(whose book was published in 1868 without notes or citations), 
states boldly that " the decree of the majority serves as the decree 
of the entire tribunal " (sec. 493, German edition). He, too, was a 
civil-law writer in a civil-law country, and in that light states the 
rule correctly ^-ithout, like Heffter, giving the foundation of it, 
viz., the principles of ordinary procedure. 

Calvo, the only other authority referred to in the British letter, 
is also an author of a country whose jurisprudence is based upon 
the Roman law, and he naturally refers to the droit civil as the 
guide in the absence of a compact, as representing the presumed 
intent of the parties, and containing the principles of ordinary 
procedure (Calvo, *' Droit International," deuxi^me edition, tome 
premier, livre xiv., sec. 667). That he means precisely what 
Heffter states, and nothing more, is made manifest from another 
part of section 667, a sentence of w^hich is quoted by Lord Salis- 
bury. Preceding the statement that, in the absence of an obliga- 
tion traced in the treaty, the decision is by a majority, he says : 
" L'arbitrage international derive de la m^me cause et repose sur 
les memes principes que l'arbitrage priv^ en matiere civile ou com- 
merciale." Applying this plain principle, so clearly stated by Calvo 
as well as by Heffter, to an arbitration between Great Britain and 
the United States, it necessarily follows, in the absence of a stipula- 
tion, that unanimity is essential to an award ; for that is acknowl- 
edged to be the rule of law of both countries in " private arbitra- 


tion in a matter civil or commercial." Again, in section 28 of the 
same volume, Calvo shows that the Roman law is only to be invoked 
hy those peoi)k's who are obliged to have recourse to the " Corpus 
Juris Civilis" for the decision of their conflicts and the determina- 
tion of their law. Neither the English nor the American people 
have ever adopted that practice. 

On a full view, then, of the authorities referred to, in connection 
with the observations of other writers on the subject, and its his- 
tory, is it not a just and inevitable conclusion that international 
law, so far as any such thing exists, lays down no other rule on the 
subject than that, in the absence of an intention to be di'awn from 
the text of the treaty, the powers of the arbitrators or commission- 
ers are to be measured by the principles of ordinary procedure of 
the treating nations ? 

A question of more inimi'diate practical importance in connec- 
tion with the fisheries remains unsolved. Has the American fisher- 
man a right under these treaties to fish freely and without restraint 
in British waters, or is he subject to such regulations while within 
the niunicij)al jurisdiction of Great Britain as her laws may establish ? 

The events occurring at Fortune Bay, on the southern coast of 
Newfoundland, in January last, have raised the question. There, 
it is said, the Americans, fishing on Sunday, were forcibly inter- 
rupted and driven off under color of a statute against Sunday fish- 
ing, while tlie pious islanders continued to fish ! The correspon- 
dence on the subject appears to leave the English position some- 
what obscure. It is indeed admitted that the provisions of the 
treaties are sui)reme, and can not be impaired by colonial legislation ; 
but the question whether reasonable municipal regulations, affect- 
ing all persons equally, are consistent with the treaty right, is left 
yet undecided. As to Newfoundland, Labrador, and the Magdalen 
Islands, the treaty of 1818 declares the right to take fish, "in com- 
mon with subjects" of Great Britain ; and the same language is 
used in the treaty of 1871. The natural meaning of such language 
would seem to be to admit the foreigner to a footing of equality 
with the subject. It is not a grant to the subject, whose position 
is left untouched ; and he is undoubtedly under the control of the 
municipal law. If, then, the American is given a liberty in com- 
mon with him, is it not such a liberty and such only as he has? 
Again, the municipal jurisdiction of a state is not understood to be 
different, either in kind or degree, as regards its waters and its 
land. If this be so, it would seem to follow that whatever restraint 


upon legislative power is created by such provisions as these would 
also occur under all treaties of commercial intercourse, unless special 
reservations were made. To hold, then, that an absolute immunity 
from any municipal legislation, in respect of the exercise of privi- 
leges conferred, exists, would involve very serious consequences, and 
appear to put the foreigner upon a footing not common with, but 
superior to, the subject or citizen of the nation granting the right. 
On the other hand, if the power of legislation still exists in such 
cases, has it any and what limits ? If it has no limits, the fishing 
rights acquired and paid for under these treaties have no other 
value than such as is measured by the will of the power granting 
them. If the scope of such laws must be measured by reason, 
justice, and equality, and they are enacted in that spirit, then they 
ought to be enforced. But suppose a British colony chooses to 
extend its mercy and pardon to its own subjects who break the 
law, and not to the stranger ; what then ? On the whole, it is dif- 
ficult to maintain that the exercise of a just and equally applied 
power of regulation ought to be surrendered by such treaties {al- 
though particular provisions on analogous points in some of those 
we have referred to lead to the inference that where the exercise 
of the right is to be subject to regulation, it is so provided in the 
treaty) ; and it is at least equally difficult to get the benefit of 
actual fair play in cases where the regulative power is exercised by 
governments whose people and local authorities look with jealousy 
and discontent upon the enjoyment by others of privileges which 
they have regarded as exclusively their own. It is evident that 
under such circumstances the power of regulation, if it exists, may 
be exercised to the extent of a practical defeat of the right. 

These fishing privileges, such as they are, have been paid for by 
reciprocal grants and in cash for a few years yet to come. The 
Government of Great Britain and the Canadians believe that they 
have been greatly undervalued by the Halifax Commission. The 
Government and people of the United States are equally earnest in 
the opinion that, aside from the money paid, the British have 
largely the best of the bargain ; and it is evident from the Fortune 
Bay aifair, and others, that the arrangement has not improved the 
sentiments of kindliness and friendship so much to be desired. In 
this state of things, both governments ought to be glad to terminate 
by mutual consent what remains unperformed of the agreement 

George F. Edmunds. 





By Tuomas Moore. 

As the bird witli trembling pinion 

First attempts the faithless gale, 
Till the Tempest's rough dominion 

Drives her to the sheltered vale, 
On the dripping spray sits mourning. 

There replumes her little wing, 
Soon triumphant Sol returning 

Bids lier soar aloft and sing : 

So fond dreams of embryo pleasure 

Early taught my breast to glow ; 
AVhile I grasped illusive treasure 

Sober wisdom waked to woe. 
Still kind Hope a ray discloses 

Peeping from the winter's frown ; 
Thorns of anguish teem with roses, 

Sorrow's thistle has its down. 

I saw her where in life's first bloom 

She sprung, and marked the spot ; 
And when the wintry weather came, 

I took her to my cot. 
And watched her growth, that none might tread 
Where sweetly, from her modest bed, 
Baised her unassuming head 
My lily of the vale. 


Then stay to-night, and deign for once 
To bless a poor man's home ; 

For you my simple store I'll spread, 
For you my ale shall foam : 

But turn aside, and do not tread 

Where sweetly, from her modest bed, 

Lifts her unassuming head 
My hly of the vale. 

Dame I^ature first laid down the rule, 

And Time has improved on her plan, 
That he ofttimes may be a great fool 

Whom Fortune has made a great man. 
For, though ragged Poverty looks melancholy 
That she has no charter for madness and folly. 
Yet, among Fortune's minions, take this for a rule 

By a wise reservation. 

All men in high station 

(No doubt for the good of the nation) 
Have got letters patent for playing the Fool. 

Glowing dreams my fancy fire, 
Ardent hopes my breast inspire ; 
Thoughts harmonious, visions bright 
Dance before my ravished sight. 
Arranged in sweet confusion, 
I catch each gay illusion. 
Till Fancy's eyeballs sink in night. 

Sweet roses and lilies, 
Each Chloe and Phillis 
By the poets of old have been settled to be. 
They've so rifled of flowers 
The groves, meads, and bowers. 


There scarce is one left for a poet like me. 
Yet if the dear creature resembles a flower, 

'Tis a sprig of sweetbrier, where blossoms the rose — 
An emblem at once of their sweetness and power, 

For it scratches your face while it tickles your nose. 

With a maid young and coy 

If you wish for to toy. 
She disdains with a frown what would give her heart ease ; 

While a widow of mettle 

Resembles a nettle : 
The closer you press her, the less you displease. 
Yet the whole of the sex most resemble my flower. 

The sprig of sweetbrier, where blossoms the rose — 
An emblem at once of her sweetness and power, 
For it sci-atches your face while it tickles your nose. 

By all bards 'tis agreed 

An old maid's a dry weed, 
Who forgets while she blossoms that life's but a span ; 

And the sly hand of Time 

Having wasted her prime. 
She resolves, when too late, to take pity on man. 
Yet maids, wives, and widows resemble my flower. 

The sprig of sweetbrier, where blossoms the rose — 
An emblem at once of their sweetness and power. 
For it scratches your face while it tickles your nose. 

Divinity, Physic, and Law, 

Of the good things of life have possession ; 
And who wishes to put in his claw 
Must follow a learned profession. 
For if each vulgar elf 
Through the lucre of pelf 
Is permitted to humbug and pilfer his brother. 
The sons of the Church 
Will be left in the lurch. 
And Physic and Law may go hang one another. 
VOL. cxxviii. — NO. 266. 2 


Be still, my bosom ; beat not so 
At thought of finding long-lost treasure ; 
Hope only brings this dream of pleasure 

To wake thee to severer woe. 
Yet thus by Hope we're treated : 

So sweetly she beguiles, 
The oft'ner we are cheated, 

The more we trust her smiles. 

]^one but her eye's mild beam of pleasure 

E'er can wound with cares my breast, 
None but her bosom's fragrant treasure 

E'er can lull those cares to rest. 
In vain all other scenes impart 

A respite from despair ; 
Her smile alone can heal the smart 

Which fixed the arrow there. 

Woman still our faith abuses. 

Seems to scorn what most she wants ; 
Only coy when she refuses, 

To be kinder when she grants. 

Is she cold as winter's bosom ? 

Cold as wintry winds I'll be. 
But with kindness greet the blossom 

Which unfolds its sweets to me. 

Is her cheek with anger flushing ? 

Chloe's cheek shall smiles impart — 
Chloe's cheek, which, warmly blushing. 

Yields her lip to heal my smart. 

* * 4f -5^ * 


Tis fixed ; I disdain 

Of my fate to complain ; 
Though the trial I prove is severe, 

'Tis better to know 

The full measure of woe 
Than to live on the rack of despair. 

Come, Pride, bring me back my soft hours of rest. 

While 1 blush for the pangs I endure ; 
Oblivion, erase her false form from my breast. 

And scorn and contempt be my cure. 

I am a soldier, gentle lady, 

And know a soldier's duty ; 
With heart and hand am always ready 

To dry the cheek of weeping beauty. 

Then set thy beating heart at rest. 
And back recall that starting tear ; 

For, know, where valor warms the l)reast. 
Soft Pitv is an inmate there. 

Honor is the poor man's dower, 
Peace and sweet content his lot : 

Wealth awaits the sons of Power, 
llim the lowly russet cot. 

Yet, humbly blest, the sons of Toil 
From nature's bounty may inherit 
As rich a heart, as high a spirit 

As the proud owner of the soil. 

The cry of battle charms no more. 

Where slaughter swells the tepid flood. 

And Yict'ry 'midst the cannon's roar 
Marks his groaning path with blood. 


Farewell to the lieart-rousing drum, 
And peace to the cannon's rude throat. 

Let the loud-clanging trumpet be dumb, 
And the fife cease its shrill piercing note. 

For Love shall now with sweeter sounds 

His lo Paean breathe, 
And on the laurel's blood-stained bough 

Ingraft his myrtle wreath. 

Hence with wrinkled care and sorrow ! 
Gloomy thought may cloud to-morrow ; 
Here to-night, with festive glee. 
Mirth shall keep her jubilee. 

Still to bless this haj)py meeting. 

Kindred Love with Friendship vies — 

Hearts with honest rapture beating, 
Glowing cheeks and sparkling eyes. 


It has been an accepted truth since the writings of De Tocque- 
ville that the town organization is the unit of American political 
life. In the preceding number of this Review it was clearly set 
forth by Governor Seymour. There lies the germ of political wis- 
dom and reform ; but it is in the cities that the greatest difficulties 
are found. The periodical ebb and flow of the great tide of popu- 
lation, the varied interests, the unceasing friction, the banded masses 
of the unsympathetic foreign-born, with universal suffrage as the 
basis of power — all these present an organization very different from 
the simi)ler unity of a rural town. Yet the cities stand as the great 
head from which purposes, and the great heart from which pulsa- 
tions, start for the whole country, and from them good government 
and reform must arise. Are they too unwieldy for human direc- 
tion, too discordant to elect their best men, and too debased for 
universal suffrage? Must they drift without helm through tides 
and rocks, by negations through imbecility and corruption ? or is 
an intelligent, manly, and affirmative administration practicable? 

Of all cities on this continent, New York presents this question 
with the widest relations and the greatest complications ; and suc- 
cess here would be the most emphatic. Its local relations to the 
whole continent, its wealth, and its energy force it onward to a 
manifest destiny. It must go on, in spite of every ill fortune and 
of antagonistic legislation, to receive the growth which nature gives 
it. It must become the largest and the most elegant city of the 
continent, and it must do this on the basis of universal suffrage. 
Noblesse oblige. If it works this out well (and it must work it out 
well or ill), it will present a new unit and germ of political life to 
the honor of the whole country. It is in this aspect that its fortunes 
are worthy of especial study. 

It has the best climate, the unmatched advantage of a central 
position on a north and south line of coast, the best harbor for ship- 


ping from the Eastern world, the best waterways to the West ; and, 
as Horace Greeley said, every railroad in the country has one ter- 
minus in New York. Its environs surpass in beauty those of any 
other city in Christendom. Its career was one of uniform success 
and rapidity of growth until the last decade, when it began to be 
loaded down with adverse legislation, with a great debt and costly 
unfinished improvements. To rescue it from these evils and to 
guide it on a successful course it needs its best men and their wisest 
efforts, with an affirmative policy of strong measures into which it 
will never drift. 

The legislation of the country has greatly reduced its share of 
its own foreign commerce, and the interests of its ship-builders and 
-owners. The debt it bears for stolen money, for which it received 
no equivalent in profitable public works, rests on each piece of real 
estate with a weight as heavy as a permanent mortgage for twenty 
per cent, of its value, on which the owner must pay the interest and 
can not pay the principal. Its unfinished public works were planned 
without forethought and inadequately, and were constructed ex- 
travagantly and corruptly. Terminal facilities for the interchanges 
and transit of its merchandise have been almost wholly neglected. 
It has been built up on a plan devised in the colonial times and in 
the earlier years of the present century, with little study of its 
wants, so that its domestic economy is conducted with great and 
needless expense. It is as if a great hotel had been built up on a 
plan which occupied each floor wholly with lodging-rooms, and its 
need of halls, staircases, and offices was first discovered after it was 
inhabited, and they then had to be constructed with great waste and 
expense. Its taxation has been heavy, its public works and its 
growth have been stopped, its population has been drawn and driven 
away into the neighboring towns and cities, its business is not pros- 
perous, and its population is not profitably employed. 

There is a policy, comprised in a few affirmative measures, by 
which these evils can be remedied, greater economy induced, and a 
course of business prosperity again commenced. Many of these 
measures are within its own direct power. Not one of them would 
be beneficial to it alone, at the expense of any other community. 
The present era of resumption is auspicious. Its money will be the 
money of the world, by which the prices of all its commodities are 
fixed, and no longer irredeemable credits ; the fluctuating price of 
gold will no longer be a factor in every transaction ; and the at- 
tempt to make a second standard in silver will be as futile as it 


would be to make two gold dollars, one worth a hundred and the 
other eighty-five cents. This much has been prepared. It will 
remain for Congress to enact such changes as will enable Americans 
to own their own vessels and carry their own goods, and to amend 
the tariff laws in the direction of free trade, so as to secure a mar- 
ket for its great surplus of productions. In other respects New 
York can help itself and work directly for its own reform. The 
subjects are : first, increased facilities for the internal movement of 
passengers and goods, and better terminal facilities ; second, the judi- 
cious j)rosecution of its public works ; third, a broader basis of taxa- 
ble property to support its taxation ; fourth, greater economy in its 
domestic life ; fifth, working its unexplored sources of city revenue. 

When measures are taken for these results, and the end comes 
that all its citizens are profitably employed, the general cause of its 
evils will be removed, and the first condition of prosperity will be 
met. I'he causes of the misfortunes of the past have been a waste 
of caj)ital and labor in premature and unnecessary public works ; a 
currency which forced an element of unregulated fluctuation into 
every contract and checked operations ; a large proportion of men 
thrown out of employment who did not return to productive labor, 
but remained idle waiters ; and tariff legislation that led to over- 
production without a market. The salutary change brought about 
by five years of hard times is, that men give up living upon the 
labor of others and seek to be productive laborers themselves. We 
therefore stand at the threshold of great national prosperity ; for 
wealth follows the employment of all hands in productive labor. 

New York lives upon its foreign commerce and the interchange 
of commodities which its wealth and position bring to its doors. 
The facilities for this interchange are those of the last century, 
while other competing cities have put in use the closest connections. 
It remains for the city to bring the vessel and the freight car side 
by side, and in every way to diminish the expenses and risk of the 
transshipment of goods. It should be accomplished as a public 
work by a private corporation, as rapid transit has been accom- 
plished for passengers by the elevated railroads ; and the city should 
derive a revenue from the privilege it gives. If this connection 
were well designed and economically constructed, it would greatly 
expand business, save needless expense and damage, and increase 
profitable employment. 

There should be a judicious prosecution of the public works, 
both those undertaken by the city at its own expense and those un- 


dertaken by it at the expense of the property-owners. With land 
and building materials at low prices, upon a basis of real money, 
and with the new means of rapid transit, the first revival of business 
will open a period of rapid growth. This must be kept within the 
city limits and within its own taxation, and not scattered abroad 
among its neighbors as it has been for ten years. The completion 
of the Brooklyn Bridge will bring back this scattered population. 
The northern sections of the island have every attraction for a new ^ 
New York. Such works as the Riverside and Morningside Parks, 
which will surpass the Central Park and draw population as it has 
never done, should be completed. They fix the highest character 
to the finest portion of the whole island. The Harlem River as the 
waterway of a region of which the Third Avenue Bridge is a center, 
with its channel opened and its bulkhead and bridges built, would 
concentrate in a location which possesses every natural advantage 
the manufacturing business which has built up the surrounding 
towns into cities from Paterson to Bridgeport. Population grows 
around some business as a nucleus. A port, a water-power, a water- 
way, or a railroad fixes the location for some great business, and the 
population follows. Except in a few places of great natural beauty, 
as Newport, Irvington, or New Brighton, population does not ac- 
cumulate alone. It does not feed upon itself. A cathedral and a 
mausoleum will not make Garden City a success, nor change it from 
the waste Dlace it has been for two and a half centuries. Sydney 
Smith commended the breed of pigs which, in growing fat, deserted 
the cheap portions of the carcass and accumulated on the places 
where it was worth a shilling a pound. The Harlem River is such 
a place. A small portion of the money expended on the Brooklyn 
Bridge, the cost of one of the untraveled boulevards, w^ould open it 
to business, and at the present era of low prices start its growth. 
Here has been the mistake of the city. It has laid out great areas 
for population, without providing for the business to support it. If 
places had been prepared for business first, its wealth and population 
would have demanded and used its boulevards. The great burden 
of the city debt is an outcry against, but not an answer to, the 
progress of improvement. It would raise a great manufacturing 
compeer to the commercial energy of the southern end of the island, 
and bear its half of the burden ; it would bring in more and new 
business, and help give to every one profitable employment. It is 
not an objection to such public works that they are in the interest 
of the laborers and give them employment. When this follows as 


a result from the prosecution of judicious and necessary works de- 
manded on their own merits, it is well. The period of low wages 
and low prices is the time when they can be done to double advan- 
tage. They prepare for natural growth, and they dissipate the 
delusions about the conflicts between bbor and capital which spread 
in idle times. Such conflicts can not arise in a free country but by 
some interference with the free working of the laws of trade. j 

Labor is the law of human life. "By the sweat of thy face 
shalt thou eat bread." It has two modes : to work enough only to 
gain the bread of the day, and to work more and accumulate bread. 
The flrst is labor and the second is capital. To enforce the first 
mode, as by the eight-hour law, and limit labor is an interference 
with freedom that bars labor from capital. No man ever made a 
fortune on eight hours' work a day. To encourage the second 
mode l)y l)usiness enterprises which stimulate labor, invites labor to 
capital. Tlie laborer who owns his spado, his horse, his shop, is 
beginning to be a capitalist. Many of the great business capitalists 
of this country began by saving their first dollar. To check busi- 
ness by tariffs, and by paying the laborer with promises instead of 
money, is an interference with freedom which drives the incipient 
capitalist back to labor again. The temper of some laborers leads 
tlicm to prefer fixed wages to the excitement and profits, the risks 
and hopes of business enterprises ; to others they have a fascination 
wliich is irresistible. A fixed rate must be met by the profits of the 
business, and there is a limit which it can not exceed. Its level is 
not easily raised when the employer is reaping great profits, nor de- 
pressed when he meets great losses. The preference for a fixed rate 
is so strong that few will accept a proportion of the profits of the 
business in which they are employed if they must anticipate a share 
in its losses. This binds the multitude within the ranks of the 
laborers. Three classes are thus produced : laborers who by suc- 
cessful enterprise become capitalists ; the unsuccessful, who return 
to labor or drift outside ; and those contented to be laborers, whose 
only accumulation is in saving. Cooperation and trades unions 
conflict with this principle by reducing all to one level, and that 
a low one, or by binding to work for the benefit of all the able man 
who will soon start out for himself. All these are interferences 
with freedom, in whose presence the conflict between labor and 
capital can not continue. 

This is illustrated by strikes. A high tariff protects one class 
of manufacturers. Their profit is at the expense of those who use 


their products, who in turn want like protection. One after the 
other obtain it, till prices are artificially increased. The laborer on 
a fixed rate of wages has to pay larger prices for all he consumes, 
and the burden all falls upon him. Under adverse circumstances, 
local or general, his wages are reduced. He sees before him the 
starvation point' and begins to resist. The weight of the whole 
false system is upon him. He can not control legislation, nor wait 
for a change of parties or policy. The resistance to his appeals is 
solid, and against his wrongs and the parties who are protected at 
his expense he strikes. It is ineffectual, but it is all that he can do. 
It is a revolutionary protest against unjust legislation which inter- 
feres with freedom. 

The position which the laborers assume when they make a con- 
flict with capital shows that they abandon their right to freedom. 
The successes which have been won by long generations of laborers 
against their political and moneyed masters the laborers of to-day 
give up, and they seek to enter again under the bonds their fathers 
cast off. Tliey ask everything of a government which, as they con- 
ceive it, would be the most intolerable despotism. They want work 
allotted, and the regulation of wages and hours. They want land, 
government loans and false money, measures which would reduce 
them to serfdom. The lesson of individual liberty has been lost on 
them. Instead of bursting the few bonds by which their liberty is 
restricted, they seek to forge the iron framework of a despotism to 
an unknown, indefinite, and irresponsible tyrant, when, if they knew 
it, with freedom they themselves are sovereign. Their imported 
ideas of the antagonism between labor and capital are delusions in 
a free country, which exist here only in so far as freedom has been 
impaired by restrictive tariffs and false money. It is against these 
few remaining restrictions that the labor organizations should com- 

[N'owhere should these restrictions be more sedulously fought 
against than in a great city of laborers, whose prosperity depends 
upon their profitable employment. Every restriction and embar- 
rassment on commerce should be removed. Every encouragement 
to new business enterprises should be given. In order to accommo- 
date itself to new business, the city has much to do — much to pro- 
vide for the incoming population which grows upon business ; and 
this work should be done, so that business will be drawn here and 
the city become as great in manufactures as it is in commerce. 

The great objection to city works has been the prodigality and 


con*iij)tion which have attended them. This has been all wrong, 
but it need not continue. The remedy is a simple one — rigid pro- 
fessional superintendence. There have been debates between the 
advocates of city work by contract and by the day ; and as the 
advantages of each have been looked £^t, and the disadvantages dis- 
regarded, each finds advocates in turn ; so that in this city, where 
great success had followed the prosecution of the public works by 
the day, public opinion swung over with great momentum, because 
of some disadvantages, to the contract system, at the very time that 
the exposure of the Canal frauds at Albany stamped the contract 
system as the source of corruption and enormous extravagances. 
The secret of good work is thorough inspection — a wise design, a 
rigid adherence to plan, and a vigilance that thrusts out idle and 
incompetent workmen. IIow is such inspection to be obtained ? In 
private work done by the day, under the eye of the owner who is his 
own inspector, the work is well done, of the best material, and at a 
fair cost ; in private work done by contract, it is the inspection of the 
contractor who drives his men. Honest inspection compels good ma- 
terial and work from the contractor, w^iose constant temptation for 
his own j)rofit is to slight the work. In private work the owner selects 
tlie contractor by his character and ability, and not by price alone. 
City work by contract goes to the lowest bidder without regard to any 
other consideration — often, therefore, to the bidder who has made 
a mistake in his calculation, or who has some undisclosed scheme. 
In such a case, the conflict between the contractor and honest in- 
spection becomes irrepressible. The contract for the Riverside 
drive is a good illustration. It extends for three miles along the 
high and wooded bank of the Hudson, through a park with varied 
and commanding views. It was park work, and required elegance 
and taste in treatment. The contractors, who were the lowest bid- 
ders, took the work at 8510,000. The engineers who drew the 
plans and specifications had estimated the work at 8700,000, and 
most of the bids of the closest contractors indicated a correspondence 
with this estimate. It was doubtful whether the contractors could 
complete the work to meet the design at the price they bid. Non- 
political and superior professional superintendence was established, 
under Mr. Olmsted. The corps of engineers, under James C. 
Aldrich, C. E., was as fine a body of men as had ever been gathered 
on such work. The work was commenced in the autumn of 1876, 
and at the close of 1877 rigid inspection had driven the contractors 
from it. The question arose whether this inspection should be 


maintained against the contractors, or broken down for them. 
The Commissioners of the Park Department by a majority vote 
decided it. As Mr. Wenman, who then became president, naively 
expressed it, they " made such changes in the engineering force as 
to enable the contractors to continue the work to a speedy comple- 
tion." Mr. Olmsted and Mr. Aldrich and his corps were displaced. 
The contractors had bidden high prices for some of the earlier por- 
tions of the work and low prices for the later portions, and the work 
was about half finished. They had two alternatives : the first, to 
lay the foundation for claims for extra work ; the second, to have 
the quantities of the profitable portions of their work increased, and 
in the unprofitable portions to force upon the engineer the accept- 
ance of worthless work. The first chance was cut off by a special 
clause inserted in the contract to prevent it, and the second chance 
was adopted. A year's prosecution of the work has raised a public 
discussion at the present moment about its execution. By days' 
labor, under the professional inspection which was established, eco- 
nomical work of the highest quality would have been produced, 
worthy of the finest drive in any park in the world. As it is, 
worthless work has been accepted, quantities have been illegally 
increased, the general design has been grossly maltreated, portions 
of the park surface of historical interest and great beauty, and 
matchless foliage, have been ignorantly destroyed, and the property- 
owners have been abundantly supplied with " substantial errors " 
as legal grounds for vacating the assessments on their property, 
throwing the whole cost of the work upon the city. There is but 
one remedy, and that is the restoration of the superb professional 
superintendence under which the work was started. Non-political 
professional inspection is the condition of honest city work. 

If the city be thus adapted to the easier prosecution of its proper 
business and made attractive to new business enterprises, and such 
public works as will pay are carried on, the immediate result will 
be to subject a larger amount of property to its taxation, and its 
830,000,000 a year will be raised upon 82,000,000,000 instead of 
upon $1,100,000,000, as it now is. It is because its policy for twenty 
years has been the reverse of that now indicated, and because of 
the lack of steam transit, that Jersey City and Brooklyn have grown 
at its expense, and New York has enriched its neighbors. A city 
with a great debt, impoverished resources, and stagnant business, 
must recover in the same mode that a merchant or a corporation 
would adopt. They would not attempt it by retrenchment alone, 




but by working at their assets, making their capital productive, and 
enlarging their resources. All the materials for enlarged resources 
and increase of capital are present, if by wise measures we choose 
to invite them at the best period of natural growth. The city's 
taxation is four fifths of it upon land ; and the proposition is broadly 
discussed and supported that, if all personal property was relieved 
of tax and made free in this city, the influx of money and capital 
for all enterprises would so largely add to the business of the city, 
and so enhance the uses of real estate, that it could easily and profit- 
ably bear the additional one fifth of the taxation. The Constitution 
of this State does not require equal taxation, and it would be a 
very safe measure to try ; it would lead directly to the profitable 
employment of all its citizens. 

With the facilities of steam transit and the improvement of the 
district north of the Harlem River annexed to the city, all the 
tendencies of growth due to natural causes will be toward the 
north, over an area subject to its own taxation. Without this 
growth the high values for taxation placed upon vacant land in 
this northern area are unsubstantial, and must disappear. Sjdccu- 
lalive values placed upon vacant land, because of its supposed 
future use, are not a sound basis for taxation. They ruin the 
owners and check improvements. If the values can not be reduced, 
they must be supported. Speculative values are based upon the 
expectation that a lot of land will come into a use, in say five 
years, which will make it worth say $10,000. Those who believe 
this will make five years' discount on this price, to fix the present 
value of the lot. Their faith in such prices depends on the near- 
ness of the time in which they believe this use will be reached. 
There is a law, too, which determines the value of land and places 
a limit upon its rise. It is this : Where land is improved, the land 
is worth a sum equal to the value of the improvements. This is 
true in a general sense over neighborhoods and localities of like 
character. The real value of land is based upon its net rents and 
the rates of interest on permanent investments. This value de- 
pends on the improvements and buildings upon it. In a good 
farming district, a careful estimate of the average value of the 
buildings, fences, and improvements through the district will be a 
fair measure of the naked value of the land. On Broadway, the 
value of the building best adapted for the business of the street, 
and bringing the best rent, will best measure the naked value of 
the land on which it stands. The same rule holds in any residence 


or business section of uniform character, and it deserves a great 
deal more consideration than this bare statement of it. There are 
many exceptions, under spasmodic or speculative causes, under 
transitions from one occupation to another, under cumulated lines 
of value, like the intersection of Broadway and the Fifth Avenue, 
and from special improvements in certain places ; but the general 
rule will be found true in all cases of extended and accurate obser- 
vation, and its bearing is this : that there is a law for the value of 
land, at a mean between speculative inflations and spasmodic de- 
pressions. It fixes a future value to land now vacant lying in the 
line of improvement, from which its present value is derived by a 
discount from that value and the cost of making it ready for im- 
provement. In any scheme for placing the taxation on land and 
making it uniform, this law becomes fundamental. 

There should be greater economy in the internal administration 
of the city's supplies and waste. For this the fault lies with the 
plan of the city. Places for daily market supplies of all sorts, and 
for daily waste of sewage, garbage, and sweepings, should have 
been provided ; a plan for a city without these is as defective as a 
residence would be which had no cellar and kitchen. The colonial 
plan of the lower part of the city provided for the only great mar- 
kets of original supply we now possess. Beyond that the plan con- 
tained no provision ; the collection, deposit, and disposal of the 
daily waste was not provided for ; and all this work is now done at 
a great expense. The markets of original supply — the Washington 
and Fulton markets — are wholly inadequate. The producers have 
insufficient accommodation, and a great army of expensive middle- 
men and distributors intervenes between the producer and the con- 
sumer, who pays a price double that which the producer receives. 
The producer should have place and space to be brought in im- 
mediate connection with the consumer. Places and spaces should 
also be provided for the daily waste, as they should have been in 
the original plan. The land which the city owned has long ago 
been sold, and for such purposes it has in great part to buy land, as 
it has bought it for its schoolhouses and courthouses, police sta- 
tions and fire stations. It is a great drawback to the city that its 
market supplies have to be drawn from so remote a place as Wash- 
ington Market ; it increases the necessary cost of living, makes it a 
needlessly expensive place for residence, and depresses its advance 
with a constant blight. Midway along the river border vast areas 
should be purchased, in immediate connection with ferries leading 


to country highways and railroads, where the producer could meet 
the consumer face to face. A reasonable and moderate rent or 
license fee on each jjroducer would be a good source of city reve- 
nue. To undertake such a reform ])resents the difficult question, 
viz., whether such markets should be carried on by the city or left 
to private enterprise. Private enterprise is the present system ; 
any change and reform must be by markets established and con- 
trolled by the city. The single difficulty is a broad area of land. 
Washington Market presents the right plan. It needs more space 
and a location farther up town. By such markets, in which the 
cost of mi«l(llemen and distribution — an enforced agency — could be 
dispensed with, the ])rice could be reduced, and the city, for a fair 
license fee and for honest regulation, could derive a large income, 
similar in effect to the octroi duties in Paris. 

Not only should public places have been provided in the plan 
of the city for markets and for supplies, but also for the econom- 
ical disposal of all the city waste. This daily waste is of three 
classes : that which is useful for manure, that which is useful for 
filling, and that which is unlit for either. The science of chemistry 
has established the economy of returning the first class to the soil. 
Here the soil in the close vicinity of the city from which its daily 
supplies come, in New Jersey and Long Island, would receive this 
means of enrichment. Its place of deposit should be on the water- 
side, whence boats could move it to the water-side near the farms. 
The second class of waste is needed to the extent of tens of mil- 
lions of yards in the upper portion of the island, for the necessary 
tilling of sunken lands, within the bulkhead line along the water's 
edge. A proper discrimination would soon reduce the third class 
of worthless waste to a minimum, for nothing is absolutely useless. 
The first requisite is places of local deposit ; the second, modes of 
transportation ; the last, the final deposit. These places for dispos- 
ing of its waste are as necessary in the economy of a city as they 
are in dwelling-houses. They must be properly located, and space 
otherwise valuable must be given up to them for the good of the 
whole. These places of local collection should be frequent and dis- 
tributed through the city, so that the collection could be made with 
the least cost of cartage. The surface and elevated railroads should 
be used, between midnight and morning, to transport the collec- 
tions in tight boxes to the place of final deposit. They should do 
the work as a rent-service to the city without expense. There is 
room for waste of the second class within the bulkhead lines on the 


south side of the Harlem River for many years to come. All the 
lines of elevated and the avenue surface roads would reach it. The 
expense of final deposit and leveling would not be too great for the 
land to bear, from the increase of value gained by the filling up 
into solid streets and blocks ready for business occupation. These 
are two notable instances in city administration in which greater 
economy could be introduced. 

Most important of all the topics is the development of the un- 
explored resources of city revenue. In an article in the November 
number of this Review, the title of the city to its own streets, 
and its right to a compensation for all uses of the class which have 
received the legal designation of " mixed public and private uses " 
— that is, uses which aid and extend the public use of the streets in 
a mode which also enriches private persons and corporations — were 
set forth ; and the grounds were stated in respect to the right of a 
compensation from the elevated railroads in the shape of a percentage 
of their gross receipts. These same reasons support the city's right 
to take compensation, or fixed rent, for every other kind of street 
occupation — surface railroads, telegraph poles, gas pipes, news and 
business stands, and all future uses. In every one of these cases 
the use of the city property is of great and paramount advantage 
to the private company, and an equal and just mode of compensa- 
tion should be established for them alike. Fixed sources of income 
are better for the city than the payment of a given sum as princi- 
pal for the privilege. Annual payment is therefore a better mode 
than the product of the sale of the privilege at auction ; the latter 
mode might operate as a grant which would be disadvantageous to 
the city in the future. Income rated by a fixed percentage, which 
will increase with the growth of the business out of which it arises, 
is best for the city and just for the company. It obviates, too, the 
uncertainties which attend any calculation of the value of future 
rents. To base it upon gross income is better than upon net, for 
the latter is as variable as the most complicated calculations can 
make it. An examination of the statistics of the companies who 
use the streets would show, on well-established principles, what pro- 
portion the use of the streets bore to the capital they use, and what 
would be a fair proportion for the contribution the city gives by 
the use of its streets toward the general results. 

The use of the Fourth Avenue above Forty-second Street by 
the railroads which occupy it is a notable instance in which the 
rights of the city were not protected. The Harlem Railroad had a 


right to use the avenue for two tracks, for a limited number of 
years, which were running out. Its tracks ran upon the surface 
for a portion of the distance between Forty-second Street and the 
Harlem River. The railroad required four tracks for an unlimited 
time. A few accidents led to an outcry from the people for a road 
at an undergrade. " Sink the track," rang in the papers ; and the 
railroad company, following the people, by legislative aid took from 
them a perpetual right to four tracks, on a plan for the improve- 
ment of the avenue, the expense of which was borne one half by 
the company and one half by the city. In addition to this, the 
company have occupied by their depot and yards the whole of the 
avenue and portions of the cross-streets for several blocks. The 
j)rinciple8 on which the company should have given to the city com- 
pensation for the ])rivileges and such use of the avenue were as clear 
then as now ; but there was no city officer to stand forth and ask 
for it — not even so much as to require frequent trains, low fares, 
and commutations on that part of the road which ran within the 
city limits. That alone would have been of great service to the 
city, in gathering the outflow of its population along with the rail- 
road lines which ran through its own territory. 

These thoughts point in the direction of measures to accomplish 
them, fitted into the contracts, laws, and ordinances by which the 
several companies enjoy their privileges, and adjusted to what they 
hold of right, what they assume beyond right, and what they have 
future need to ask for. The point is open to the city where its 
claims to revenue and rent service can be inserted and enforced ; 
but at this point the work is more appropriate to a lawyer's office 
than to these pages. The city of Paris presents illustrations of the 
closest economy in the directions now presented. Its income for 
1878 was 254,063,335 francs, of which 122,203,250 was proposed 
from octroi duties on the supplies of food, etc., which entered its 
gates, and 28,369,895 of the residue from the use of the streets and 
other property, for every purpose under, upon, and above the surface. 
If New York were to begin now to establish on a sound basis a 
revenue from such uses of its property, within limits which were 
just to those who paid them, an income would be secured which 
would, by a reasonable increase with the growth of the city and a 
return of its prosperity, either provide for its debt within the period 
of its maturity, or relieve a large portion of the burden of its annual 
taxes. As a remedy for its financial evils retrenchment is wholly 
inadequate ; and an affirmative policy, by measures through which 
VOL. cxxviii. — NO. 266. 3 


its property will be made productive and its unexplored resources 
be made available, is imperative. 

A work of this kind is difficult ; it would be beset with antago- 
nisms and obstacles ; but it is practicable. It would gather immense 
momentum by being well stated ; the people would help in it. It 
would insure a rapid recovery from past evils ; it would bring re- 
turning prosperity into the service of the city. Such an affirmative 
policy, firmly carried out, would, in a most notable instance of ill 
fortune, demonstrate that the best government was practicable in 
great cities, and that the American unit in political life, born in the 
town orga;nization, did not fail under the complications of great 
aggregations of energy, population, and business. There is no bet- 
ter time for the practical consideration of any efforts for reform 
than the accession to power of a new Mayor such as Mr. Edward 
Cooper. The financial administration of the city is honestly con- 
ducted. The policy of retrenchment has been carried on so success- 
fully as to demonstrate its insufficiency for the relief that is needed, 
and that affirmative measures of some sort are in order. A com- 
bination between such a Comptroller as Mr. Kelly has shown him- 
self to be and Mayor Cooper may now produce all that is needed 
— a far-sighted and energetic administration, with the highest pro- 
fessional and non-political superintendence over all public works. 
There is no need of men who trifle along the surface of affairs, or 
who are satisfied with personal distinctions ; who are controlled by 
party considerations, or who drift on the current of abuses. A wise 
man to foresee, a patient man to perfect measures, and one with in- 
fluence to combine all forces to accomplish good results, is what the 
city of New York awaits. 

William R. Martin. 




" Baldness is perhaps the least of the thousand ills which man 
is heir to," says Dc Lamartine, " but it is a rather serious evil if it 
befalls a country. The value of a nation's territory depends a good 
deal on its vegetative productiveness." 

That " understatements " are in good taste is a rule with occa- 
sional exceptions ; for it would be about as appropriate to speak, 
like Aristophanes, of annihilation and death as " annoyances of the 
first magnitude," as to talk about a "rather serious evil" in referring 
to the change of a national territory from fertility to desolation. 
We must think of individual instead of public misfortunes to im- 
agine a nw7'e serious evil than that. Nay, it is a grave question if 
w^ have a right to speak of any other evil as a national calamity 
in that fearfullv literal sense of the word. War and revolution 
affect the upper strata of society, and pestilence may blight the 
k flower of one entire generation, while yet the deep roots of national 

life remain intact, and capable of resuming their germinative func- 
tions with the next favorable season ; but spring and summer return 
in vain if the soil itself has lost its reproductive force, and neither 
secular nor religious reforms nor the most pawerful political stim- 
ulus can break the death-slumber of a nation whose country has 
ceased to support vegetable life. 

The inhabitants of Persia, Egypt, and Mesopotamia, and the 
Mediterranean nations, who once " enjoyed heaven on this side of 
the grave," have thus perished together with their forests, leaving 
us a warning in the ruins of their former glory, which nothing but 
a plea of religious insanity can excuse us for having left unheeded 
for the last eighteen hundred years. 

The physical laws of God can not be outraged with impunity, 
and it is time to recognize the fact that there are some sins against 
which not one of the Scriptural codes of the East contains a word 
of warning. The destruction of forests is such a sin, and its sig- 


nificance is preached by every desolate country on the surface of 
this planet. Three million square miles of the best lands which 
ever united the conditions of human happiness have perished in the 
sand drifts of artificial deserts, and are now more in-etrievably lost 
to mankind than the island ingulfed by the waves of the Zuyder Zee. 

Some of these countries, like Egypt and Palestine, were over- 
taken by their fate long ago, while the ruin of others has been com- 
passed within comparatively recent periods. Since the beginning 
of the sixteenth century the population of the four Mediterranean 
peninsulas has decreased more than fifty-five millions, and the value 
of their agricultural products by at least sixty per cent, (even with- 
out making allowance for the increase in prices) ; and the rate of 
the decline from year to year bears an exact proportion to the de- 
crease of the forest area of every district. 

During the reign of Abul Hassan (1466-1484), the forests of the 
Sierra Nevada were protected by stringent legislation, and in every 
district where the original woods had disappeared the proportion of 
orchards and grain fields was no longer optional, but regulated by 
a code of " field laws." After the conquest of Granada these laws 
were abrogated, and the Moorish orchards and chestnut groves dis- 
appeared to make room for Christian vineyards. The Moslem in- 
habitants of Andalusia, who were hunted out of Europe like wild 
Beasts, had created a paradise in southern Spain ; but their Chris- 
tian conquerors could not prevent that country from becoming a 

The Turkish provinces in Europe and Asia Minor, especially 
those south of the Balkans and southwest of the Taurus range, en- 
joyed abundant crops and comparative prosperity till after the ac- 
cession of Amurath III., when the exigencies of the Ottoman navy 
exhausted the timber stores of those regions, which ever since have 
been visited by periodic droughts and severe famines. The aridity 
of the south Italian coast districts and the island of Sicily dates 
from the time when cotton fields first superseded the mulberry 
groves of the Neapolitan silk-farmers, and the extensive grape cul- 
ture of Apulia encroached on the live-oak forests that had clothed 
the spurs of the Apennines since the days of the elder Pliny. Here, 
as well as in Greece and Portugal, the introduction of the tobacco 
plant, which needs a rich vegetable mold, suggested the cultiva- 
tion of the upper mountain-valleys, that had nursed the fountains 
of classic rivers in their ancient woods, and from the slopes of 
Olympus to the Sierra Morena the beds of former watercourses are 



now marked only by barren ravines, choked with rocks and a maze 
of withered brambles. 

Afghanistan, Persia, Mesopotamia, Syria, Asia Minor, Greece, 
Macedonia, the southern islands of the Mediterranean, and the 
whole of northern Africa from Cairo to the western extremity of 
Morocco — countries which were once blessed with abundance and a 
glorious climate — are now either absolute sand wastes or the abodes 
of perennial droughts, hunger, and ^Tetchedness ; and wherever 
statistical records have been preserved, it is proved, beyond the 
possibility of a doubt, that their misfortunes commenced with the 
disappearance of their arboreal vegetation. 

In view of these facts, it may not be quite uninteresting to know 
that since the year 1835 (the date of the first reliable South Ameri- 
can statistics) the forest area of the western hemisphere has de- 
creased at the average yearly rate of 7,000,000 acres, or about 
11,400 square miles ; and that in the United States alone this rate 
has advanced from 1,000 square miles in 1835 to 7,000 in 1855, and 
8,400 in 1870. Between 1750 and 1835 the total aggregate of for- 
ests felled in South and Central America (especially in southeastern 
Mexico), an<I in the Eastern, Southeastern, and Southwestern States 
of our republic, may be estimated at from 45,000,000 to 50,000,000 
acres. In other words, we have been wasting the moisture-supply 
of the American soil at the average ratio of seven per cent, for 
each quarter of a century during the last one hundred and twenty- 
five years, and are now fast approaching the limit beyond which 
any further decrease will affect the climatic phenomena of the en- 
tire continent. 

\Vlien Ojeda and Vespucci landed at Rio Hondo in 1499, the 
mainlands of the New World contained already a greater propor- 
tion of barren territory than the northeastern continent (Asia and 
Europe) in the century of Herodotus and Xenophon. Three hun- 
dred years after the foundation of Rome, Europe, as we call all the 
western portion of that continent, was covered with continuous 
woods from Iberia to the foot-hills of the Caucasus, while the des- 
erts of the East were limited to the table-lands of Gobi and the 
northern half of the Arabian peninsula. But the seemingly inter- 
minable forests that excited the admiration of the first American 
colonists are in reality confined to an alluvial belt along the eastern 
coast of South America and the eastern third of our northern main- 
land. The eighteenth degree of longitude west from Washington 
marks very nearly the boundary between America Felix and Ameri- 


ca Deserta, as we raiglit distinguish the fertile eastern garden lands 
from the alkali plains of the West. This line, which passes through 
western Minnesota, Iowa, Kansas, the Indian Territory, and eastern 
Texas, is approached here and there by the great East American 
Sylvania, which once reached from the Missouri to the Atlantic, 
and is bounded in the West by table-lands which, on the whole, 
exceed in sterility the so-called deserts of Central Asia, and contain 
regions which for hundreds of miles are absolutely without a vestige 
of vegetation. 

Between the Great Slave Lake and the Saskatchewan, our Brit- 
ish neighbors own a track of barren territory which surpasses the 
treeless plateau of northern Tartary in repulsiveness as well as in 
size ; and, owing to the lower temperature of America, the same 
degree of latitude that passes through extensive Siberian forests lies 
far to the north of a line that divides the last North American tim- 
ber lands from the dismal snow wastes of the polar regions. 

Adjoining the British boundary, we have a piece of sand land 
which reaches from the Red River of the North to the Indian 
reservations of Washington Territory, and southward to a line 
drawn from Virginia City to the mouth of the Big Cheyenne, and 
which, after subtracting a few strips of cottonwood-trees along the 
main watercourses, may be described, in the words of General 
Hazen, as " a blank from the Columbia to the Missouri — a hopeless 
and absolute barren, 300,000 square miles in extent." Viewed from 
a sufficient elevation, the Black Hills of Dakota and the mountains 
of eastern Colorado would appear as forest islands in the midst of a 
sandy ocean — the fabled Great West, or the central plateau of our 
continent, which, instead of being an " emigrants' paradise," is per- 
haps the most forbidding region which an intending agriculturist 
could encounter outside of northern Africa. The word barrenness 
is hardly sufficient to describe the azoic and utterly unimprovable 
character of enormous sections of these plains. Sixty thousand 
square miles in Utah and Nevada, 45,000 in Arizona, and 180,000 
between the Rocky Mountains of New Mexico and the sand hills 
of western Texas, are as unfit for tillage as the crater of an active 
volcano. Twenty inches of annual rainfall may be considered as a 
minimum, below which no inland region can repay the trouble of 
cultivation ; but twelve inches is all that can be hoped for in the 
most favored districts of Arizona, while in the southern part of 
Utah and New Mexico the average yearly moisture-supply (even 
including occasional heavy dews) falls short of seven inches, and in 


the center of the Llano Estacado amounts hardly to three inches 
and a half. There is no soil on these bleak hills, if that word 
implies any admixture of vegetable mold, but only a thin stratum 
of drift-sand or alkali dust, spread over the flinty rock ; and during 
the six summer months the hunter or miner may wander over dis- 
tricts as large as the island of Great Britain without seeing a drop 
of running water. The Pais del Muerto, the "Land of Death," 
south of the Rio Gila, extends far into the republic of Mexico, 
which can boast of two other such embryo Saharas ; one in western 
Sonora and the other northeast of Mazatlan, between Durango and 
the seacoast. 

South America has few absolute deserts — i. e., lands devoid as 
well of annual as of perennial vegetation ; but portions of the 
Pampas and of the Tierra Templada of Peru are quite as sterile 
as the table-lands of Syria and southern Spain, and experience has 
l>roved that nine tenths of the Argentine Republic, and the larger 
half of Bolivia and Paraguay, can only be utilized as pasture 

In the heart of the Andes, too, there are extensive plateaus 
which even the enterprise of the Incas failed to put to any useful 
account ; and the Peruvian seacoast from Arequipa to the Chilian 
frontier is skirted by a broad belt of sandy downs. 

The treeless regions of America lie chiefly in the west, those of 
Africa and Arjibia in the north, of Europe in the southeast, and of 
Australia in the northwest ; and the theory that all deserts on the 
face of our globe have been produced by the hand of man is, there- 
fore, supported by the remarkable circumstance that the most 
barren portions of four continents are found on the side turned to- 
ward Asia^ and which, according to all geographical and ethnologi- 
cal probabilities, must have been first reached by the waves of emi- 
gration which emanated from that common home of the human 

But, besides these prehistoric (as we should call them rather 
than aboriginal) sand wastes, America now contains a number of 
smaller but growing deserts, which date their origin from the arri- 
val of the white man. Any neglect of the precautions by which 
Abul Hassan preserved the productiveness of the Andalusian Yega 
could not fail to be quickly resented by the thin-skinned soil of the 
tropical table-lands ; and it need not, therefore, surprise us that the 
Spaniards succeeded in desolating the plateaus of South and Central 
America, as their fathers had desolated those of Aragon and Castile, 


and that even the rich valleys of the Brazos and Colorado have be- 
come subject to perennial droughts. 

Still, it might have been hoped that the virgin woods north of 
the Red River had been secured by nature against the possibility 
of such a fate. To overcome the stubborn fertility of the East 
American forest lands might well seem a task which would baffle 
the united efforts of the cotton-planters and lumbermen for a thou- 
sand years to come ; but a fatal perseverance in the worst possible 
method of cultivation has solved the problem in less than two cen- 
turies. Eleven times (or almost every other year) since 1850 the 
country between the Alabama River and the State border of the 
two Carolinas had to suffer from dry summers, which in 1855, '59, 
and '75 threatened the South with a general famine, and have per- 
manently lowered the average water line of some Southern rivers 
by several inches. It seems that, while there were any remnants 
of woodland to encroach upon, irrigation and the use of fertilizers 
were never resorted to. The rich mold of a newly cleared piece 
of land yields abundantly for a few years, but the quick repetition 
of uniform crops soon exhausts the soil, and where labor is cheap 
the temptation may have been great to abandon such worn-out 
lands to their fate and continue the work of destruction in the 
forests. But if, instead of thus denuding entire countries, the 
planters had spared a grove here and there, they would have reaped 
larger crops on a hundred acres than they can now oa a square mile, 
in spite of the lavish use of guano ; and the woods, besides reward- 
ing their forbearance with fuel, nuts, and berries, would have in- 
sured the needful humidity of the atmosphere, the perpetuity of 
their springs, and the health and happiness of their children. 

The coincidence of more favorable climatic and geological con- 
ditions than any other region of the Western World can boast of, 
has so far enabled the State of North Carolina to resist the devas- 
tating energy of her tobacco-planters and turpentine-distillers ; but 
the country which once realized Daniel Boone's ideal of a hunter's 
paradise, the land south and southeast of the Kentucky River, which 
he describes as " a boundless rolling ocean of wood-covered hills," 
has now hardly tree-shade and water enough left for the exigencies 
of the stock-breeders, and assumes an ominous resemblance to the 
parched hill country of southern California. 

In the sandy and level districts of New Jersey and Delaware the 
natural tendency to aridity is counteracted by the extensive orchards 
that have taken the place of the virgin forests ; but the farmers of 


Wisconsin, northern Illinois, and Indiana, who devote their plains 
to the exclusive production of grain crops, are inviting a danger 
from which the neighborhood of the Great Lakes will not save them 
for many more years. 

The ruinous experiments of the Old World nations have taught 
them some lessons which will be repeated on our own continent, 
unless we prefer to learn by a cheaper method, remembering the 
thrifty proverb of the aliena jyericida. As a general rule, from 
which only the alluvial deltas of large rivers can be excepted, we 
must assume a sixfold excess of treeless area over the woodlands of 
any district as the limit, beyond which its fertility becomes depen- 
dent on irrigation and artificial stimulants, and which can not be far 
exceeded without defeating the purposes of tillage ; for after the 
total disappearance of forests from a large tract of land, the lost 
fertilizing influence of arboreal vegetation can only be retrieved by 
processes whose expensiveness would neutralize the profits of hus- 
bandry. In Persia, Asia Minor, southern Spain, and throughout 
northern Africa, with the exception of Egypt, agriculture has ceased 
to " pay " in the commercial sense of the word, and the peasants 
prefer semi-starvation to the superhuman task of raising a full crop. 

Only a small i)ortion of the magnificent forests that once adorned 
the paradise of the Mediterranean nations owe their destruction to 
war, accidental fires, or the market value of their timber ; but in the 
Old World, as well as in Wisconsin and Alabama, the cultivators 
of cereals and some other annuals have felled ten out of every dozen 
acres of woodlands that have disappeared from the face of the earth. 
The lumberman selects the tallest and straightest trees, prefers the 
full-grown ones even for fuel, and not only permits, but desires and 
helps, the saplings to replace their fallen seniors ; while the grain- 
or cotton-planter uproots the forests to the bottom of the organic 
soil, and glories in the sight of a level country, " cleared " as far as 
the eye can reach. In accordance therewith, we see that the cedars of 
Lebanon, which had to furnish timber for every architectural enter- 
prise of western Asia since the days of Solomon, are not exhausted 
yet ; that the peninsula of Yucatan, which has supplied the world 
with logwood and mahogany for three hundred years, is still as 
woody as before its discovery by the conquistador^es ; and that the 
coast districts of Maine, Michigan, and North Carolina, which have 
been most heavily taxed by the lumber-trade of North America, 
contain still as much woodland as the rest of our Eastern States 
taken together. 


In the agricultural districts of the Southern and Central States 
the cultivation of four deciduous plants — maize, wheat, tobacco, and 
cotton — has accelerated the work of denudation, which in the Old 
World was accomplished almost by wheat alone ; and it is a fact of 
ominous significance that the first swarm of the Rocky Mountain 
locusts which invaded the Atlaiftic settlements made its appearance 
in the western counties of Alabama, the " champion cotton State " 
of the South. 

The physical history of the eastern continents has demonstrated 
that, where the productions of the soil have been reduced to decid- 
uous (or " annual ") plants, neither remoteness from the equator nor 
the neighborhood of the ocean can secure a country against the 
fate of northern Africa — the utter and permanent extinction of 
organic life. The desolation of the central regions of a continent 
is only observed where such districts are formed by table-lands of 
considerable elevation, as in Utah, northern Mexico, and Turkistan. 
The midland plains of South America and the birth-land of the 
Nile are covered with a luxuriant vegetation, while the Sahara bor- 
ders on the very ocean for more than fifteen hundred miles, and 
Arabia, with eighty-five per cent, of desert surface, is surrounded 
by four seas. The highlands of northern Tartary rival those of 
Dakota in barrenness as well as in the severity of their winter cli- 
mate, and Europe as well as South America contains many dreary 
wastes at a great distance from the equator ; while the equator 
itself, in its range through two continents and three large islands, 
does not touch a single desert nor any country that ever suffered 
from a scarcity of water. 

It would be a mistake, then, to suppose that any region inclines 
to aridity on account of its latitude or its distance from the sea. A 
natural tendency of that kind, 9r rather an inability to withstand 
the ravages of man for any length of time, can only be ascribed to 
extensive table-lands of an elevation exceeding three thousand feet, 
and remote from any higher and snow-covered mountain range. 
Vast lowland plains may preserve their productiveness under very 
trying circumstances, as we see in Russia, China, and southern 
India — countries that have been under cultivation for more than 
fifteen centuries ; but the only regions which seem absolutely proof 
against any outrages on their fertility are the alluvial estuaries and 
deltas of larger rivers, and valleys at the foot of mountain ranges 
which lift their summits above the line of eternal snow. No such 
mountains are found east of the Mississippi, and the glaciers and 


perennial snow fields of the West are restricted to a few isolated 
peaks ; but of alluvial bottom lands, replenished by inexhaustible 
rivers, we own about forty thousand square miles, at the mouth of 
the Mississippi and its southern tributaries and in the swamps of 
the Gulf coasts, whose inhabitants, like those of the lower Amazon 
Valley, may violate every law of agricultural economy to their 
hearts' content ; they will never exhaust the cornucopia of the river 
god, who will continue to lavish his abundance on them, as he has 
lavished it on Egypt, in spite of all they can do to abuse his bounty 
— though these exceptional privileges may be offset by the un- 
healthiness of their luxurious marshes. But the vast majority of 
our population, the dwellers of the Western plains and the hill coun- 
tries of the East and North, enjoy their prosperity on terms which, 
however easy to the strict observer, and seemingly pliant to altered 
conditions, are in reality as inexorable as the laws of^health. 

In a country like ours, where government interference is almost 
sure to make a refomi unpopular, and where, happily, the enforce- 
ment of unpoi)ular laws is still impossible, the success of every 
legislative innovation depends on the degree in which the public's 
opinion of its usefulness has approached to conviction ; and I be- 
lieve that, in regard to the necessity of forest laws, as the Austri- 
ans call them, this condition will be attained by the following 
provisional measures : 

1. In every township, or smaller subdivision of a county or par- 
ish, where the disappearance of arboreal vegetation begins to affect 
the perennial springs and watercourses or the fertility of the fields, 
let a space of, say, fifty acres, on a hill if possible, or on ground of 
comparative elevation, be appropriated for a " township grove," an 
oasis to be forever consecrated to shade-trees, birds' nests, picnics, 
and playing children. 

2. In all new settlements, and in the mountain regions of the 
older States where a remnant of the primeval forests has survived, 
let the woods on the upper ridges or on the summits of isolated 
hills be spared by mutual agreement of the proprietoa'S. By elimi- 
nating decaying trees and cultivating the aftergrowth, such forest 
reservations may become directly remunerative, especially in dis- 
tricts where timber and firewood are as scarce as they are sure to 
be in all our central States before the end of this century. 

3. In the treeless regions of the " Great West," not only ama- 
teur societies (which have set a good example in Kansas and Iowa, 
and in the Southwest here and there), but every grange and farm- 


ers' union of every county should devote themselves to the work 
of tree-culture. Let them form oak-, beech-, and pine-tree associ- 
ations, organize rival forest clubs under attractive names, offer 
prizes for the greatest number of shade-trees of five or more inches 
in diameter raised by any planter, celebrate the return of spring by 
grove festivals after the manner of the ancient Assyrians, or try the 
device of Pastor Oberlin, who created a paradise in a dreary valley 
of the upper Moselle, by instructing parents to plant a hatful of 
chestnuts or cherry kernels at the birth of every child, which it 
became the duty and the privilege of the little citizen to cultivate. 

4. Let every landed proprietor see to it that the balks or boun- 
daries of his estates, and the unplowed ridges between the sub- 
divisions, be set with shade-trees, and that wooden fences be either 
supplanted or reenforced by quickset hedges. 

5. Plant fr^iit-trees wherever there is a piece of ground neither 
otherwise occupied nor absolutely barren ; and be sure that their 
influence on the atmosphere in summer and their fertilizing leaves 
in fall will more than indemnify the adjoining fields for the modi- 
cum of sunlight they may intercept. 

Any State, nay, any county, where these precautions should be 
generally adopted, would soon be so unmistakably distinguished by 
the unfailing humidity and freshness of its fields and the abun- 
dance of its crops, that the sheer necessity of competition would 
induce backward neighbors to try the same experiment ; and before 
long the maxim would not only be generally recognized, but gener- 
ally acted upon, that husbandry and tree-culture are inseparable. 

But the interest we should take in the preservation of our woods 
might rest on even a broader basis than their agricultural impor- 
tance. That man was not created in a desert, nor in a cotton field 
or a city, but in a forest, is one of the few points in which Moses 
and Darwin agree ; and, with our forests, we would lose their health- 
giving atmosphere, the music of their song-birds, the purest enjoy- 
ments of our early years, and nature's remedy for the mental dis- 
cords of manhood. Woods are the native life-element of the human 
race ; and a homesickness, an instinctive yearning after the garden 
home of our forefathers, haunts the nomad of the desert as well as 
the inhabitant of luxurious cities. 

" If a future Messiah should appear among us," says Gotthold 
Lessing, " ask him what he can do to restore our lost earthly para- 
dise, and let that be the test of his divine authority." But a para- 
dise is much easier lost than restored. Nature, instead of healing 


corrupt civilizations, prefers to civilize healthy barbarians ; and the 
wildest wilderness of the backwoods has a better chance to be im- 
proved into a garden than the desolate remnants of the finest East- 
ern garden to be restored to vitality. Lands as well as their nations 
seem subject to chronic diseases ; and, if the "baldness of a country" 
is not a cureless evil, the geographical records of the Old World at 
least prove nothing to the contrary. From Bokhara to Gibraltar 
the progress of that disease has been toward death — toward the total 
disappearance of organic life ; and the present productiveness of our 
most favored regions is no safeguard against the possibility of such 
a fate. 

Even now, though exposed to the blighting influence of sur- 
rounding deserts, some districts of Turkish Asia and southeastern 
Europe can rival the garden spots of the Western World ; but of 
the fertility of their golden age neither the valley of the San Joa- 
quin nor the " Piedmont " counties of North Carolina can give us 
more than a faint conception. In Assyria and the central provinces 
of Asia Minor, where water is now as scarce as in the eternal man- 
sion of Dives, the humidity of the soil, combined with a sunny 
climate, once produced grain crops, flowers, and fruit-trees in a 
superabundance which could astonish even the children of Israel, 
who had become familiar with the bottom lands of Egypt, and, even 
in the latter centuries of the Roman Empire, could lure the Italian 
magnates from their luxurious villas. Pliny, Hadrian, Marcus 
Aurelius, Alexander Severus, and others frequented the Elysian 
valleys of Smyrna and Antioch, much as a Massachusetts Senator 
might rusticate in Chattanooga or Los Angeles ; and the Emperor 
Varus, who marched against the Parthian invaders, a. d. 162, was 
80 charmed by the mountain gardens of Daphne that, like Tasso's 
Rinaldo in his dolce prigione, he forgot his army, empire, and all, 
and rusticated away, while his generals were battling in distant 
Mesopotamia. Two centuries after the birth of Christ, and after 
the hordes of Persia and Arabia and the legions of Rome had rav- 
aged this garden for more than a thousand years, Asia Minor still 
contained forty-five cities whose population exceeded a hundred thou- 
sand each ; and the total number of her inhabitants, variously esti- 
mated from fifty-five million to twice that number, certainly exceed- 
ed the present population of the North American Continent. The 
Grecian settlements, which occupied only a narrow strip along the 
western coast, were more populous than the entire Asiatic empire 
of Turkey in its present extent, and Mesopotamia sustained more 


human beings to the square mile than the south of modern England 
or the factory districts of Belgium. What land of the New World 
is safe, if such a country could become a desert ? 

The least regard for the welfare of our children might teach us 
to attach a stigma to the wanton destruction of forests which even 
the invader of a hostile country would hesitate to incur. No other 
sin is so relentlessly visited upon posterity. The children of the 
poor Spanish peasant have to starve because their forefathers devas- 
tated the Sierras, and " preferred the cultus of the Virgin to the 
culture of the fruit-trees," as Guiccardini maliciously expresses it ; 
and unborn generations may labor in vain to repair the ruin which 
we might now prevent by such simple precautions. If we admit 
that " he is a benefactor of mankind who makes two blades of grass 
grow where only one grew before," we can hardly fail to recognize 
the turpitude of an act which has entailed incurable sterility on 
regions which once furnished the means of life and happiness to 
millions of human beings. Like the destruction of cereals, it might 
be called a crimen in Deam, a crime against the sanctity of our all- 
sustaining Mother Earth. 

If we consider how the agricultural products of the eastern 
continents become from year to year more inadequate to the wants 
of their still growing population, we may foresee the time when the 
hope of the world will depend on the productiveness of the Ameri- 
can soil ; but that productiveness depends on the fertilizing influ- 
ence of the American forests. If they are gone, we shall have on 
earth no newer world to hope for ; no future Columbus can allevi- 
ate the struggle for existence ; '' we must fight it out on this line." 

" What an opportunity to recover ! " exclaims Baron Yarnhagen 
— " to recover from all our physical, financial, and political diseases 
in that broad continent of woodlands and of freedom ! What a 
blessed and lasting chance to heal all the wounds and retrieve all the 
losses which the cruel Old World and the mistakes of the last 
eighteen centuries have inflicted upon us ! " 

Let us make the best, then, of this opportunity to recover ; for, 
while the fate of Asia Minor makes it rather doubtful if the chance 
will be a lasting one, it is distressingly probable that it will be our 


Felix L. Oswald. 




The " Solid South " is a reaction against proscription, attended 
by misgovernment, and a protest against the ever-recurring menace 
of Federal interference. 

There are many ways of punishing a people, just as there are 
many kinds of arbitrary power. The old methods have for the 
most part grown obsolete. It was left for the leaders of the Re- 
publican party, having confiscated more property and impoverished 
more non-combatants than were ever before submitted to the hazards 
of war, to invent a new process in the art of inflicting popular pains 
and penalties — that of freeing the slave and enslaving the free on 
the side of the vanquished. Nor was this all ; for, adding insult to 
injury, it was done on the assumption that the class enslaved, unfit 
to govern or to be trusted, was at once treacherous and cruel ; it 
was done, and its succeeding enormities have been justified, in the 
name of philanthropy, patriotism, and liberty, and in terms at once 
complacent and unfeeling. 

It did not last because it could not last. With the overthrow 
of responsible governments, there came disorders, and, as a conse- 
quence of these, the destruction of material prosperity. Ruin in the 
South threatened ruin at the North. The party which wrought the 
mischief was unable to maintain itself in its mischief. It lost its 
footing therefore, slowly but surely, until, twice driven from power 
in the lower House of Congress, it is about to lose possession of the 
upper. To this conclusion the " Solid South," united by proscrip- 
tion, has indeed played a most important part ; but it has been a 
part assigned to it by the Republican leaders themselves. The 
South is simply what the Republican party has made it. Failing 
to destroy by reconstruction, failing to divide by misrepresentations. 


threats, and hard words, the policy now is to make the solidity of 
self-defense the pretext for a " Solid North," and to accomplish at 
last what was designed at first, the perpetual ascendancy of sectional 

To this end the politicians and the journalists of the Republican 
party have set themselves the task of educating the Northern mind ; 
and no occasion is missed for establishing and enforcing the assump- 
tions on which the native white people of the South are to be sub- 
verted : that they are lawless in practice and disloyal at heart ; that 
they hate the blacks and seek to disfranchise them ; that they ac- 
tually do suppress all liberty of speech and action ; and, finally, 
that if the whole power of the North is not consolidated to check 
their progress, they will presently control the Government, over- 
throw the national credit, and disgrace the national honor. These 
are mere sectional and partisan assumptions, which, if true, bode no 
good for the future of the Republic. But they are persisted in all 
along the Republican line with an ardor which never loses its self- 
glorifying righteousness, and a painstaking zeal in the fabrication 
of examples worthy the fanatical times of religious persecution. 
Every utterance which can be misquoted or misconceived is tortured 
into treason. Every fisticuff is elevated to the dignity of rebellion. 
Everything, in short, that passes in the South is wrested from its 
surroundings, and lugged off Northward to do duty as an informer 
against the humanity and opinions of the Southern people, to whom 
are assigned baser motives and a different standard of morality than 
prevail at the North. Thus tittle-tattle, hitherto employed by mis- 
chief-makers in the poor service of private pique, has got a promo- 
tion, has become a Government agent, and ranks as one of the forces 
in our public life. 

As far as the authors of this policy are concerned, it is useless 
for the South to offer so much as a plea in its own behalf. Like 
Sydney Smith's old women who quarreled across an alley, the two 
can never agree because they argue from opposite premises. Nay, 
the premise set up by the Republicans was constructed in order 
that there might be no possible agreement. It may be fairly doubted 
whether the abject submission of the Southern mind to the dictation 
of the extremest Republican leader, selected for the purpose, would 
exempt the South from the reproaches of the Republican party and 
the defamation of the Republican press, or secure that internal free- 
dom from Federal tampering which is so necessary, not only to its 
domestic peace, but to its progress in good works and arts. 

TEE ''SOLID south:' 49 


It is given out, apparently by authority, that the President has 
no idea of joining the stalwarts of his party in this new crusade 
against the South, but that, confessing a certain disappointment in 
the reception accorded his conciliatory policy by the Southern peo- 
ple, he will proceed without malignance upon the line of his duty, 
executing the Federal laws with rigorous impartiality. 

Assuredly, no one can complain of such a course, carried out in 
good faith. But everybody knows that, as a rule, there is consider- 
able divergence between the professions and performances of men in 
great place ; and, as the relation of the South to the Government 
is still sufficiently equivocal to tempt partisans to rush in where 
statesmen dare not tread, and, moreover, as partisan legislation has 
furnished machinery to that very end, thoughtful people may well 
regard the position assumed by the President as lacking in specifi- 
cation, and therefore to be accepted with allowance, if not with 
anxiety. For example, the President need not say that in with- 
drawing the troops from the South he merely accepted the situa- 
tion, carrying out the plan already agreed upon by his predecessor. 
Again, he might well spare himself the trouble of mentioning that, 
even if he desired to undo what he has done, he could not. Sug- 
gestions of this kind are presumptuous and misleading. They are 
unworthy to come from the Chief Magistrate of a great and united 
country, who is conscious of having done his duty by the whole 
people. They smell of the old leaven of sectional bigotry, and 
make one doubt whether the official who permits such expressions 
to escape him is capable of executing the Federal laws, designed in 
the first place for party service, impartially in the South. 

An election never occurs. North or South, but that on the side 
of the defeated there is plenty of outcry. Perhaps too often there 
is plenty of reason for outcry. If the foundations of this, true or 
false, are to be carefully collected by hostile agents appointed at 
Washington for the purpose, how shall we hope ever to be rid of 
the sources of sectional strife? There will never be a party in 
power w^hich will not use the machine made to its hand. There 
will never be an election in which it may not be used. It is the 
machine itself, and the President's unquestionable application of it, 
which constitute the danger; and, as he declares himself disappointed 
in the Southern people, it can hardly be hoped that he will not give 
his ear rather to the adventurers who run to him with wild stories 



than to tlie less enterprising and demonstrative elements of society, 
•which recognize neither his paternity nor his right of surveillance. 

For why should he be disappointed in the South ? He came 
among us, and we treated him as a President and a gentleman 
should be treated. Did he expect us to break up our party con- 
nections and relations and join his party, or unite with him in mak- 
ing a new party ? What has happened in the South the last twelve 
months which has not happened in the North ? We have reached 
the millennium in neither section. In both there are disorders and 
violence ; the strong are unjust ; the weak are trod upon ; and good 
men are not always able to quell bad men. But is this situation to 
be mended by renewing sectional bickerings, and throwing into the 
flame of evil, which always burns, the combustible materials of par- 
tisan interest and malice ? 

The principle of home rule has not yet been denied by any re- 
sponsible American authority. By the operations of the adminis- 
trative policy its practice was restored in the South. The President 
claims that in restoring it he only did his duty, which is true, and 
in which event party payment should not be asked. Undoubtedly 
beneficent results have followed. Undoubtedly beneficent results 
will continue to follow. The partisan solidarity of the South is 
referable, not to unfair elections, but primarily to the courses pur- 
sued respectively by the Republican and Democratic parties of the 
North. The one has been friendly ; the other has been proscriptive 
and unfriendly. The South, on the issues of the last few years, is 
Democratic, and for good reason. It would be strange if it were 
not. It is the effort to array the North against us on a line of pro- 
scription, simply because we have resisted and do resist proscrip- 
tion, which seems unreasonable, and which we contest. At this 
time there is, practically, no Republican party in the South to con- 
test elections with the Democrats. In South Carolina and Louisi- 
ana, where it subsisted by military sufferance, and was represented 
by armed encampments, the withdrawal of the troops left it with- 
out a reason for continued existence. It fell to pieces literally by 
its own rottenness. In Louisiana, at the recent election, its rem- 
nants united themselves with the wildest rag-money lunatics ; in 
South Carolina there was not enough left of it to put a ticket in 
the field. Yet the Republican press of the North, taking the old 
set of bankrupt vagabonds and jail-birds for their witnesses, are 
shrieking for " a free ballot," and pointing to Democratic majorities 
in South Carolina, where there was no Republican organization, as 

THE SOLID south:' 51 

proof of foul play. And because the people of the South dare to 
defend themselves, they are denounced en masse as traitors to lib- 
erty and humanity, whose chief delight is "bulldozing" and ballot- 

Against this unfair and illiberal dealing the South protests, and 
the protest is universal, embracing all the responsible elements of 
life. There is thus a real difference between a "Solid South" and 
a " Solid North." The South is " solid " in its own defense. The 
Republican leaders would have the North "solid" in continued 
pursuit and jicrsecution of the South. At this rate we should never 
have any peace, never have any sectional repose, never have any 
national prosperity and glory in which all might share ; but we 
should go on forever, criminating and recriminating, steadily im- 
pairing the public credit, ultimately to close the account in bank- 
ruptcy, repudiation, anarchy, and despotism. 

To this feast the sectional policy of the Republicans invites us. 
That policy is not only aggressive, but is based upon an assumption 
which, if it be true, means the overthrow of republicanism — the 
incapacity of the people of the South for self-government. 


The people of the South are nothing if not sentimental. Cli- 
matic influences have, of course, had much to do with this idiosyn- 
cratic feature of Southern life ; but it is also the offspring of con- 
ditions equally potent : the institution of slavery, which built up 
great homesteads and homestead affections, for one ; a leisurely, 
isolated, provincial existence, affording the opportunity and the 
means for the equivocal culture of the voluptuary, not the severe 
training of the schools, for another ; a traditionary reverence for 
England and things English, an inherited love of old English liter- 
ature, a belief in the social, domestic, and political system of Eng- 
land, or rather in a mistaken conception of that system, for a third. 
The Southern lad who has been educated at home knows a little 
Latin, less Greek, and a great deal of English ; his repertory em- 
bracing a mass of crude knowledge, sometimes familiar, sometimes 
useless, but always engaging, crowded in between Addison and Swift 
and Hallam and Macaulay. Of mathematics he is almost as igno- 
rant as of Greek ; and, with a store of what, for the want of a bet- 
ter term, the world agrees in calling polite learning, lacking not in 
readiness, ho lacks accuracy, the source and resource of modern 
thought and action. He is thus, in the materialistic debates of a 


thoroughly materialized generation, an ill match for the cool and 
wary disputant, who throws rhetoric to the dogs and plies the heart- 
less logic of statistics. 

The whirligig of time, come at last to the aid of the North, has 
brought in its revenges. For fifty years, during the bucolic period 
of the republic, the South sent its best men into public life, the 
North its worst. The Southern statesman may not have been al- 
ways a planter or even a rich man ; but, when he was not, he still 
sprang from the dominant class, and was a conservative. In a 
sparsely settled agricultural community, yielding to the foremost 
talent, professional incomes necessarily small, a seat in Congress 
was, in dollars and cents, as lucrative employment as was to be had. 
To him whose fortune made him independent of venal considera- 
tions, the place itself was sufficiently tempting. So the South never 
wanted for efficient representatives : men in full sympathy with the 
spirit of the age ; men adequate to all the exigencies of the time ; 
good judges of constitutional law, though poor judges of facts and 
figures, which did not happen to rule ; good declaimers and debat- 
ers upon the theoretic topics which arose out of an angry sectional 
controversy. The North, on the other hand, in many instances, 
sent her lackeys to Congress. Her rising merchants, lawyers — citi- 
zens of real worth and mark — could seldom afford to abandon great 
and paying enterprises, to give up richly rewarded professional pur- 
suits, to struggle for political preferment, which not only demanded 
sacrifices, but required the exercise of low arts and imposed the 
contamination of vulgar association. With rare exceptions they 
staid at home. The scrub who could scuffle, the pettifogger who 
might not get a practice but who could serve a corporation, went 
to Washington ; and these were unable to cope with the gentlemen 
of the South either in honesty or in capacity. To be sure, there 
were many notable exceptions. When Tom Marshall stumbled 
upon John Quincy Adams in the House — when Hayne shied an un- 
wary lance at Webster in the Senate — the force of the whole cul- 
ture upon half culture showed itself, to the discomfiture of two 
men of real genius. But such scenes were rare. The rule was 
that the Southerner came off victor in most of the fights and got 
most of the glory ; and for the reason given, and no other. 

Times have changed ; conditions are reversed. Beneath this 
illusory stream of glory a steady undercurrent ran. A conspicuous 
Southern statesman, Mr. Toombs of Georgia, recently boasted that 
during eighteen years' service in Congress he had never obtained a 

THE ''SOLID south:' 53 

dollar for his district. His Northern colleagues were neither so 
sublimated nor so squeamish. While he declaimed they manoeuvred : 
a light-house here, a custom-house there ; to-day a railway subsidy, 
to-morrow a river improvement ; fat cuts in all the general appro- 
priation bills ; land grants and water grants, year in and year out, 
from one session to another. Truly, the Southerner had to pay 
dearly for his glory ! Finally the war came, and, the North 
equipped, the South without equipment — a victim to misleading 
theories and calculations, each of which in its order came to grief 
— the issue was simply that of force against force, and, as discern- 
ing men on both sides saw at least a year before the close of it, 
there could be but one result. 


The overthrow of the Confederacy verified the predictions and 
vindicated the opinions of the conservative intelligence of the 
South, which had opposed disunion, and was dragged into the 
secession movement by the violence of the times. It also produced 
an element previously unknown in the South — a bright, active, self- 
reliant young manhood, educated in the rude school of war. Since 
18G5 the Republican party has done what it could to debauch and 
destroy these geniis of a new and sound political life ; and if it has 
not quite succeeded, its failure has been due rather to the strength 
of the germs than to any lack of tormenting ingenuity in its meth- 
ods. I shall not burden this hasty resume with a recital of the 
nagging which divided time with the muddling, throughout the 
short-sighted treatment bestowed upon the Southern people and the 
Southern question by the Republican leaders. It is sufiicient to say 
that the charge of exceptional hostility to the negro rests mainly 
upon devices brought about to produce antagonism and to prevent 
an honest understanding and cooperation between the native races, 
and that the cackle about " social ostracism " rests upon no founda- 
tion worthy of respectful consideration. 

The wonder is, not that there has been so much bloodshed at 
the Soutli, but that, under the circumstances, there has been so 
little. But, much or little, the country at large can look with hope 
only to domestic forces for improved conditions. Outside political 
pressure tends but to inflame. Administrative meddling begets 
conflicts of jurisdiction in the courts. State and national ; between 
the two stools, justice falls to the ground and malefactors make 
their escape. He is a poor judge of human nature, or else very 


ignorant of the Southern character, who does not know that the 
well-being of the negro must originate at home ; most certainly it 
can not be shaped or hastened by missionaries carrying banners on 
which sectional and partisan inscriptions, carefully worded to convey 
the greatest possible oifense to the native white population, are em- 
blazoned. The negro is placable and kindly — the fortunate possessor 
of a sweet, loving, and generous nature. He is yet half a savage. 
His future is shrouded in mists which are not very penetrable. A 
free man, a citizen, a voter, he should be left to work out his destiny 
— a hard one at best — in his own way. Rescued from the agitation 
of which he has been the victim, he is likely to grow in grace and 
good works ; to educate himself and to be educated, slowly of course ; 
to be useful, contented, and happy ; perhajDS to develop, with in- 
creasing aspiration and advancing civilization, faculties now merely 
susceptible and imitative into forces of which he does not dream. 
But, employed for party service as he was employed for domestic 
service, he is a devil incarnate ; a barbarian, useful to the basest 
purposes ; the easy prey of the vilest. No true friend of his but 
would take him out of politics as a factor or leading issue. Handled 
for ten years as an instrument of torture and pillage by unscrupulous 
camp-followers who remained in the South to rob the dead and dying 
left by braver and better men upon the field, the time may come 
when he will compose the Tenth Legion in the Army of Repudia- 
tion, already mustering in the North, to sweep down upon New 
England, with New England's own battle-cries in his mouth and 
the reflection of hell itself in his eyes. Better, far better, leave him 
where he stands, to be " bulldozed," if you please, into voting the 
Democratic ticket, than attach him again to the fortunes of a cor- 
rupt and heartless body of mercenaries, having no local interest or 
ties, to be used by them for incendiary purposes. Better, far better, 
leave him to his fate with the conservative intelligence of the South, 
which comprehends his peculiarities and sympathizes with his real 
wants and needs, than have him trained and sharpened for efiicient 
service in future agrarian movements. 

It is absurd, if not monstrous, to suppose that he can ever govern 
in the South, or anywhere else. The scheme to force his ascendancy 
is merely a job to transfer Tweedism from the North to the South, 
and to multiply the Tweeds in the fancied interest of the Repub- 
lican party. The negro is a creature of circumstance, easily led. 
He voted the Republican ticket while there was a Freedman's 
Bureau to serve him rations, while there were promises of " forty 


acres and a mule " to lure him into camp, while Republicanism 
seemed synonymous with the glittering paraphernalia and the power 
of the armies he had seen sweep over the country. These with- 
drawn, he ft'U under the ordinary domestic influences, and is to-day 
voting the Democratic ticket with the cheerful adaptability of his 
nature. lie is at least out of harm's way. He is beginning to de- 
pend less upon the Government and more upon himself. In his 
person and property he is as safe as a man, ignorant and poor, can 
be. A true philanthropy, whose first duty is to advise itself, would 
sec the wisdom of letting well enough alone. Nobody pretends 
that the condition of the negro is an enviable one. It is only 
aflirmed that it is better than it was under his old or his new mas- 
ter, the planter or the carpet-bagger ; and that his future can not 
be improved by going back for counsels or practices into the period 
of reconstruction. 

In its organized capacity, neither party cares anything for the 
negro. Each would enslave him to its uses. But there is in the 
South, as there can not be in the North, a humanity which is not 
partisan, born of old ties and associations, common griefs, fellow 
feeling, which link the homestead and the cabin, not perhaps by 
hooks of steel, but by " the mystic chords of memory " which 
stretch across the chasm between the present and the past. To 
this humanity, and to it alone, the destiny of the negro may be 
safely intrusted. If it does not educate and elevate him, the fault 
will be his, and not its want of interest and effort. The Republican 
party has done much to stamp this out ; but, thank God, it is not 
yet extinct ! 


In these random notes upon the " Solid South," I have attempt- 
ed to give, in a suggestive way, the case of the Southern people 
against the Republican leaders, with some reference to their case 
for themselves ; and by the term " Southern people " I mean, dis- 
tinctly, the responsible classes, on whom the Government and the 
Northern people must rely, if the rule of the bayonet is not to be 
restored ; the native white population as distinguished from the 
irresponsible, entirely ignorant, and helpless blacks, who, having no 
volition of their ot\ti, must and will be controlled, either in the 
home interest by those who represent it, or in the rotten-borough 
interest by partisan agents sent down to usurp the honest and be- 
neficent functions of home rule. I have charged that the Republican 


party, which for ten years had sole custody of the Government, 
ignored all that was good and cultivated all that was bad in the 
South. I have hinted that there are people in the South who, 
" forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto 
those things which are before," not only love their country, and are 
loyal to all that should constitute its greatness and pride, but enter- 
tain sound opinions upon the material issues which press upon our 
day and generation. My conclusion is that, if the Republican pol- 
icy of meddling and muddling, of nagging and double-dealing, con- 
tinues, it will at length complete the demoralization which it has 
only half accomplished ; that it will loosen the South from its con- 
servative moorings ; and that, when the unlucky moment comes, 
instead of a reservoir of wholesome ideas, we shall find the South 
a magazine of combustibles, ready to be used by adventurers and 

The circumstances attending the last Presidential election put a 
serious strain upon our elective system, and it was the South which 
saved the country from civil strife and secured the peaceful settle- 
ment of a most dangerous issue. It is the South to-day, the " Solid 
South," to which the friends of social order and honest money will 
have to look for reenforcements when the tug of war is really at 
hand. How shall they fare if, in the mean time having leveled 
suffrage in the South to the low standard of suffrage at the North 
— yea, to a lower — having elevated ignorance into a power, and 
employed this power to prostrate and debauch the intelligence 
which could only organize and direct it for good — they find the 
South detached from its fixed principles, a monster without a head, 
broken into worthless cliques and ripe for political adventures ? 

Be it remembered that this cry about the " Solid South " and a 
" Solid Xorth " is but an echo, after all. The country had four 
years of a " Solid South " against a " Solid North." Each side 
spoke its mind freely out of the cannon's mouth ; the declamation 
was vociferous, the rhetoric was magnificent, the argument was 
conclusive. Good men on both sides, satisfied with the result, 
wish to forget the unhappy events which led to it. Is it possible 
that any wise man can believe that continuous debate on the old 
sectional lines can bring us nearer to a happy consummation of the 
questions in dispute ? 

But the Republican leaders say : " We don't want to do this ; 
it is you. Cease to mistreat the negro, learn to love your country, 
guarantee the security of life and property and freedom of speech : 

THE ''SOLID south:' 57 

that is all we ask, and, by all the gods of a solid North ! this we 
mean to have." 

In reply, tlie South, conceiving itself a peer and not a vassal, 
might say : " What right have you to use such language ? The 
assumption on which you base it is false. The spirit in which it is 
delivered is born of cowardice and cant. You seek no peace. You 
care nothing for the negro. Freedom of speech, and the security 
of life and property, are the last things which you would have 
established in the South. Your aim is continued disturbance, on 
which you hope to trade and derive a profit. Your game is to goad 
us into tlie imprudent utterances of outraged manhood. For years 
you legislated against us. For years you have maligned us. You 
lose no opportunity to insult us. Well, if the North can stand it, 
the South can. The present generation of Southern men is not 
responsible for slavery or the war of secession. Nearly all of the 
active leaders of the South were obscure young men when the war 
beijan. The leaders who are comin^; on were in their cradles. In 
all that constitutes good government, the government of the. peo- 
ple, we are equally interested with you. In private virtues, as in 
public spirit and in public virtue, we claim to be at least your peers. 
As for you — the radical leaders of the Republican party, who would 
rekindle the smoldering fires of an almost extinguished sectional 
fury to gain a partisan victory — we make no disguise of our feeling 
toward yow ; we detest and distrust you : detest you for your mean 
pursuit of us ; distrust you for your hypocrisy and corruption. 
You alone, among Americans, have caused the cheek of honest 
Americans to blush for their country in every part of the world. 
You alone, mountebanks and malignants that you are, have driven 
our flag from the seas, to convert it on the land into a drop-curtain 
to conceal your machinations against the liberty and peace, the 
prosperity and fair good name of a section of your countrymen, 
sprung from the same origin as yourselves, and having an equal 
right to share with you the glorious achievements and the birth- 
right of our fathers. If you are able to drag your neighbors, a 
majority of the good people of the North, down to your baseness, 
to poison their very blood with lies, and to array them * solid' 
against us on the line of an insincere, proscriptive charlatanism, so 
be it. We wash our hands of the consequences. Degrade our- 
selves by alliance with you, contaminate ourselves by intriguing 
with you— that we will not do, because you have exhausted the 
resources of human forgiveness by transcending the limits set upon 


human endurance. In seeking to dishonor us, you have dishonored 
yourselves ; and, though death and the devil stood at the door, 
we'll none of you ! " 

The South might say this, and more ; and, in moments of exas- 
peration, many an honest, liberal Southern man, who entertains 
opinions and "sentiments and sympathies with the foremost thinkers 
of the North, has been tempted to say it. I am sure that he does 
not live, if in a discourse of this sort one may be allowed a personal 
reference, who more thoroughly respects the character and polity 
of New England than I do ; who warms more heartily to her 
prowess, her courage, and her geniality ; who has a kindlier laugh 
for her grotesquerie ; who is freer of prejudices against her, hav- 
ing indeed none except such as favor her, and would elevate her 
munificence, her culture, and her thrift into examples to be con- 
stantly set before the ill-taught, the half -taught, the indolent, 
spendthrift, and impoverished South. And yet, speaking to the 
radical leaders in question, and to them alone, I do make bold to 
reiterate the words I have written down and to hold them true ; 
and, sure of the intelligence and candor of the average Northern 
audience, and fearing not to disturb the ghostly back numbers of 
the " North American Review " by recording them in these pages, 
I should be surest of all in Faneuil Hall itself ! 

The Republican party is a sectionalist. It has done what it 
could to create the " Solid South " in order that it might compel a 
" Solid North." At length it has the appearance of the desired 
array of sectional forces. The effect upon parties affords pretty 
and timely speculation for the newspapers. The result, for the 
people at large, may be foretold by any thoughtful person ; for 
vicious agitation leads inevitably to loss of business, public confi- 
dence, and credit, opens the way for corrupt enginery and adven- 
turers, and, in the end, threatens the demolition of either liberty or 
property, and oftenest of both. 

Heney Wattekson. 



In a previous paper we have given a rapid glance at the relation 
of modern Italian to ancient Latin. In further illustration of this 
Buhjoct we now propose to consider what was the probable pronun- 
ciation of the ancients, as far as it is indicated in their literature. 
This question has been much mooted of late, and deserves careful 
consideration. Hitherto each nation has assumed the right to pro- 
nounce Latin according to the rules and intonations of its own 
language. This, however, is as preposterous as if we were to insist 
on pronouncing French or Italian as if it were English. In Ger- 
many, Latin becomes German ; in France, French ; in England, 
English. Of all these, certainly the worst and the least defensible, 
at least so far as the vowels are concerned, is the English pronun- 
ciation ; and probably the worst, so far as the consonants are con- 
cerned, is the German. Of late a considerable interest has been 
aroused on tliis question, especially in England ; but it is to be 
regretted that, without apparently any very deep study of the sub- 
ject, England proposes to follow the lead of Germany and adopt 
her pronunciation. At a conference of the head masters of schools 
in England held in 1871, the system of Latin pronunciation preva- 
lent in England was declared to be unsatisfactory, and the Latin 
professors of Oxford and Cambridge were requested to draw up 
and issue a joint paper, to secure uniformity in any change con- 
templated. Complying with this request, a syllabus was drawn up 
and published by Mr. Edwin Palmer and Mr. H. A. J. Munro, rec- 
ommending an entire change of pronunciation ; and these changes 
we now propose to consider. 

First, as to the vowels. There can scarcely be a question that 
at present all of these are pronounced incorrectly in English. 
Though we have all the vowel sounds, yet each vowel or character 


is differently sounded from that of any other nation. Our flat a is 
the Italian e y our e is their i ; our o is different from their o ; our 
i is not a vowel at all, but a diphthong, with the double sound of a 
broad and e ; our u (when not pronounced as 06) is also a diph- 
thong, or combination of 6 and 00. 

The first rule given in this Oxford and Cambridge syllabus is 
that " d " should be pronounced " as the accentuated Italian a, as in 
the middle a of amata, or as the a of father / d as the unaccen- 
tuated Italian a, that is, as the first and last a of amata. It is not 
easy to represent this sound in English ; we know nothing better 
than the first a in aicay, apart, aha.'''' 

Now, with all due deference be it said, there is no such sound 
of a in Italian as in the initial letter away or apart ; a has always 
the same sound as in father, and never the light, flying sound of 
the first a in away. This is one of the mistakes by which an 
Englishman is always recognized in speaking Italian. The three a's 
in amata have all the same sound. The only difference is, that 
there is the stress or accent on the second. 

The third rule is : " ^ as accentuated Italian ^, as the first i of 
timidly or the i of machine / ^ as unaccentuated Italian i, i. e., as 
the last two ^'s of timidi, or the i of pity.^'' Again we have to 
make the same comment. The three ^'s in timidi are precisely 
alike in Italian, and there is no such sound as the light ^ in pity, as 
any one may prove by asking an Italian to pronounce this word. 
He always says eat for it, and peety for pity, in speaking Eengleesh, 

The pronunciation of o is correctly given in the syllabus accord- 
ing to Italian. The pronunciation of u is given thus : " u as ac- 
centuated Italian u, as the first xi in tumido, the second of txmiultOy 
or as u in rule or lure / ii as unaccentuated Italian u, as the second 
u in tumulo, the first in tumulto, the u of fruition.'''' To this we 
have to observe that the u in Italian is always like our 00 in moon. 
The two iC^ in tumulo have exactly the same sound. 

These are, however, but slight differences, about which little 
need be said. The rules are, if not absolutely accurate, sufiiciently 
so to serve all common purposes. Where we must differ more seri- 
ously and decidedly is in respect to the proposed pronunciation to 
be given to certain consonants, and these we shall discuss more at 
length. For the most part, although in the preliminary remarks it 
is admitted that the Italian pronunciation is probably the most 
proximate to that of the ancients, in point of fact the German rule 
is followed, and especially in the g, the c, and the v. 


As far as 8cbolarship is concerned, there can be no question that 
great deference is due to the erudition and critical acumen of the 
Germans. They are eminent as ])hilologists, and in their commen- 
taries and criticism tliey stand in the highest rank. The debt we 
owe tliem for their laborious and discriminating ehicidations of the 
text of ancient authors is very great. But in their pronunciation 
of foreign languages the Germans are singularly inapt and without 
discrimination. In their utterance they confuse, confound, and 
mispronounce more than half the consonants, seeming incapable of 
distinguishing between them to an extent which is found in no 
other nation. It is this defect of ear and utterance which renders 
them very unsafe guides in matters of pronunciation. So remark- 
able is this peculiarity, that one has only to confound and mispro- 
nounce the consonants of any lano^uasje in order to imitate the utter- 
ance of a German. The Germans unconsciously transpose, without 
aj)parently recognizing any real difference, h with 7?, d with t and 
M, J with c and qu^ j with ch and <7,/*with v, s with z. You have 
only to dransboze dese ledders, ant you have de sbeech of a Chair- 
man — in garigachure. This is equally the case in their pronuncia- 
tion of Italian, French, and Spanish. It is rare to find a German 
who can distinctly say the simple words, "Bon jour, madame," 
without changing three of the consonants — Pon choiir, onatame. 
The pronunciation of Latin by the Germans was formerly consid- 
ered barbarous, as will plainly appear from the following accredited 
fragment of historj- : In 1482 ambassadors from the Pope were 
sent to Germany, to whom the Chancellor of the University of 
Tubingen was deputed to return answer. But his pronunciation 
was so barbarous as to be nearly unintelligible, and the duty was 
thereupon transferred to Reuchlin, on the ground that he could at 
least make himself understood, and had a " sonum pronuntiationis 
minus horridum." And in the sixteenth century, at Wtirtemberg, 
regulations were issued ordering that those whose German mouths 
could not pronounce all the letters were not to be immediately 
beaten or dragged by the hair ! 

The pronunciation of Latin by the Italians, though it is prob- 
ably incorrect in some particulars, would certainly seem to afford 
the best general rule to follow. Indeed, it would be difficult to find 
any satisfactory reason to support a contrary opinion. They are 
the descendants of the ancient Romans — with much intermixture of 
foreign blood, undoubtedly, but still the nearest in line of all na- 
tions. The language has varied, grown, developed, and assumed 


new forms ; but it has probably changed less in their mouths than 
in that of foreigners, of whatever clime and speech. It has been 
the constant utterance, even in its original form, in the Church, 
from the earliest days of Christianity. It has been employed con- 
stantly, as not only a written but a spoken language. Until 1870 
it was the documentary language employed in the highest court of 
law in Rome ; it still continues to be used in papal allocutions, and 
it was the recognized cosmopolitan language adopted by all bish- 
ops and representatives of the Church in the late Council. It has, 
therefore, a continuous line of living descent from the ancient days. 
Though in some respects, of which we shall have occasion to speak 
later, there appears to be strong ground to dispute their pronuncia- 
tion, yet in general it would seem to approximate more closely to 
that of the ancients than that of any other people. 

In the pronunciation of c, g, and v, the Italians differ entirely 
from the Germans. Before e and ^, the c is pronounced by the 
Italians as our ch in church or chest, but by the Germans as k ; and 
it is this latter pronunciation which is recommended by the syllabus 
of Cambridge and Oxford. They say, " C always as K ; in Cicero, 
facies, as well as Cacus." 

In like manner, the Italians make the g soft before e and ^, and 
hard before a and o, just as we do generally in English, as in gen- 
eration, ginger, gallant^ got. The Germans make it invariably 
hard, and the syllabus recommends this pronunciation : " G always 
as g in get, in gero, gingiva, gyrus, as well as gaudeo.^^ 

We cannot for various reasons think there is any sufficient war- 
rant for such a statement. In the first place, the letter C is con- 
stantly found in old inscriptions, in Greek and Latin, as representing 
the letter S or Z, which would have been quite unnecessary and 
misleading if it had the sound of the Greek kappa, or our IC. Thus, 
to mention one of a thousand instances, the name of Sardanapalus 
is inscribed on a statue in the Vatican as CAPH^ANAllALOC. 
This would rather seem to indicate that the C was sounded like S. 
But there are other facts and words which more plainly point to 
the probability that the modern Italian pronunciation of c soft, be- 
fore e and i, as in chest, conforms to that of the ancients. In many 
words t was used interchangeably with c before e and i, showing 
that the pronunciation of these letters in such positions must have 
been the same, or nearly the same, and therefore that c could not 
have been pronounced as k. Thus, solatium, convitium, suspitio, 
tribunitius, nuntius, conditio, among others, are often spelled sola- 


cium, convicium, suspicio, tribunicius, nuncius, condicio. A still 
stronffer evidence of this is to be found in the ancient names of 
persons. There would seem to be no safer method of determining 
the ancient pronunciation of letters than by a recurrence to the 
proper names in which they are to be found. Names alter little, if 
at all, for centuries. They are in constant use, and handed down in 
hundreds and thousands of families from one to another generation. 
The sound is constantly on the tongue and on the ear, and is subject 
naturally to less variation than in any other words. The first mis- 
pronunciation of it would be saluted with laughter. Even w^ere the 
spelling lost, the pronunciation would remain. Now, among the 
ancient names c is constantly used interchangeably with t, show- 
ing that these two letters were in such cases nearly, if not exactly, 
equivalents in sound. Thus, among others, Marcia is sometimes 
spelled ^lartia ; Mucins, Mutius ; Neratius, Neracius ; Portia, Por- 
cia. The c must, therefore, have had the soft Italian sound. Again, 
such names as Celsus, Caesar, Decius, Cincinnatus, Caecilia, Mar- 
cellus, Lucius, Lucia, Lucilla, Marcia, and many others of the same 
character, have always been in use in Italy. Is it possible to believe 
that the present j)ronunciation of these names in Italy, which have 
been in constant familiar use in hundreds of families for twenty cen- 
turies at least, is entirely false ? When did it suffer this change ? 
Why was it altered ? The syllabus w^ould have us pronounce Cicero, 
Kikero. But the name of Cicero has always been a living name, 
familiar to every ear in Italy, and no one there ever heard it pro- 
nounced Kikero. It is alleged, as an argument in favor of this pro- 
nunciation, that it was spelled with the kappa, Kt/ctpwv, when written 
in Greek. l>ut, supposing it were pronounced by the ancient Ro- 
mans, as by the moderns, Chichero, how were the Greeks with their 
alphabet to represent this sound ? They had no letter with which 
to spell it nearer than kappa. The chi was a deep guttural, the 
kappa was the soft k ; they had no other letter, and they took the 
one nearest to it. And, still more, do we know what was the exact 
sound of the Greek kappa f The same reasons also apply to the 
Greek spelling of all similar names, such as Caesar and Celsus. In 
fact, when we find Caius spelled Fatof, one is tempted to ask why 
the r is here used instead of the kappa, if the Jcappa had the sound 
we suppose of our own k f 

In like manner, in all ancient names of persons and places in 
which g occurs before e and f, it is pronounced soft by the Ital- 
ians, and this affords one of the strongest proofs that it was so pro- 


nounced by the Latins. As examples of this, among many others, 
may be cited Virginia, Virginio, Girgente, Egisto, Virgilio, Eugenio, 
Gemma, and Gelasio. Not only the Italians give this soft sound, 
which still adheres to these words even in English, but there is not 
one of the Romance nations by whom it is pronounced hard. The 
Spaniards aspirate it, and between French and Italians there is but 
a shade of difference, it being softer in French, and having a slight 
sound of the z. No one pronounces it hard, like g in English get. 
Again, not only in names, but in almost if not all other words of 
Latin derivation, in which g precedes e and ^, it has the same soft 
pronunciation. Gentilis is gentil in French, gentle in English, and 
gentile in Italian. So also genius, gemma, generatio, germen, ges- 
tatio, may be adduced. But it is useless to multiply examples ; they 
will occur to every one. Is it in any way probable that all the Ro- 
mance nations, whose languages are derived from the Latin, are 
utterly wrong in their pronunciation, and that the Germans (or the 
Ghermans, if they are right in the sound of the g) have preserved 
its true pronunciation ? 

Let us go further. Undoubtedly in ancient inscriptions we find 
the g and the c before e and i used indifferently. A clear proof 
of this is to be found in the inscription of Duilius, a. v. c. 493, at 
Rome. This was engraved on the base of the Columna Rostrata, 
raised to celebrate the first naval victory over the Carthaginians, 
and which was struck down by lightning between the second and 
third Punic wars, and remained b^iried in the ruins of Rome until 
it was unearthed in 1565 near the Capitol. Though considerably 
defaced in parts, it was legible, and has been carefully restored by 
learned hands. It is as follows : 

" C. Duilios. M. F. M. N. Consol advorsum Poenos en Siceliad Secestanos 
socios Eom. obsidioned craved exemed, leciones refecet, dumque Poeni 
maximosque macistratos lecionumque duceis ex novem castreis exfociont, 
Macelam opidora oppucnandod cepet, enque eodem macistratod bene rem 
navebos marid consol priraos ceset. Socios clasesque navales primos 
ornavet paravetque, curaque eis navebos claseis poenicas omnes et max- 
sumas copias cartaciniensis praesented sumo dictatored olorom in altod 
marid pugnad vicet, XXXque navis cepet cum socieis septem milibos, 
quinreinosque triremosque naves XIV merset, tone aurom captom numei 
^ D . . . pondod. Arcentom captom praeda numei cccIood. Pon- 
dod crave captom aes ccclooo, ccclooo, ccclooo, ccclooo, ccclooo, ccclooo, 
ccclooo, ccclooo, ccclooo, ccclooo, ccclooo, ccclooo, ccclooo, ccclooo, 
ccclooo, ccclooo, ccclooo, ccclooo, ccclooo. Is quoque navaled praedad 


poplom rom. deitavet atqne Cartaciniensis incenuos duxet triiimpod cum 
XXX rostreis clasis cartachiiensig captai. Quorum erco S. P. Q. R. eei 
p. (posuet)." * 

Here we have the g and the c used interchangeably, showing 
that they had nearly the same sound before ^. Either both were 
liard or both were soft. If both were hard, then the Italians, as 
well as the French and Spaniards, are entirely wTong in their pro- 
nunciation of both letters, and the same incorrectness is to be found 
in most of the Enorlish words derived from the Latin in the use of 
the (J. In fact, all the world is wrong except the Germans. Is it, 
however, probable that all these nations sliould wrongly pronounce 
all tlie Latin words which still exist unclianged in their languages 
in whicli either c or (j precedes e and i ; and that the Church, carry- 
ing on daily and continuously its functions and offices in Latin for 
eighteen centuries, shouM have assumed a totally new and false 
pronunciation ? 

If tliis be the case, what is to be made of the observation of 
Quintilian, "Cum 6\ac siinilitier G non valuerunt in T^ac Z>, mol- 
liuntur ; ne illas (]ui«lem circa S literam delitias [which, be it ob- 
served, he spells delitias] hie magister f eret " (Inst., lib. i., cap. 11) ? 
What are we to say of this word gingiber, which was also spelled 
zinziber — our P^nglish ginger? There can be no doubt that the z 
was soft, at least if we can trust Dionysius of Halicarnassus and 
Fabius. Again, the Latins sometimes put D for (r, showing that 
it was soft. Were the Germans ever called the GheiTnans ? Why, 
too, was it ever necessary to spell the Greek chi with ch, if C had 
the same hard sound ? Why Cherubini, and Chiragra, and Cheli- 
donia, and Chiromantis, and Chelae, and others? How, too, are 
we to pronounce words in which c follows x, as excire, excipio, 
excerpo, exceptio, etc. ? If the c is soft, it is easily elided ; if hard, 
this would scarcely be possible. So again, how are we to explain 
the fact that such names as Valentia and Sulpitia are written Va- 
lencia and Sulpicia ; and conditio and solatium appear as condicio 
and solacium ? f Again, why spell pulcher with an A, if pulcer has 
the same sound ? 

There is still another clear indication that g had not the hard 

* Other examples are to be found in the royal edicts where ^ and c are used in- 
terchangeably, as having the same force. Thus, agnum is spelled acnum; agrum, 
acrum, etc. 

f "Letters of Fronto and Marcus Aurelius, In Nepote Amisso," pp. 216, 217. 
VOL. cxxviii. — ^o. 266. 5 


sound in all cases. According to Priscian, the Emperor Claudius, 
recognizing the imperfection of the Roman alphabet to express va- 
rious distinction of sounds, proposed to introduce three new letters 
or characters, one of which was called the anti-sigma, which was 
formed by reversing one c against another. This oc represented the 
function of the Greek ^:)s^, and all three letters were, in the opinion 
at least of Priscian and Quintilian, necessary. If, therefore, the 
sound of c formed any part of that of psi, it clearly could not have 
been hard like A\* 

It would seem, therefore, all things considered, that there is not 
sufficient warrant to overthrow the present Italian pronunciation of 
c and g, as recommended in the Oxford and Cambridge syllabus. 
Nothing certainly is gained, variety is sacrificed, and there seems 
to be every probability that the traditional pronunciation is right. 
At all events, such is the universal pronunciation in the south of 

Again, when we consider the large number of pure Latin words 
still in constant use in Italy, without change, so many of which are 
names of things and materials in common use — words which have 
been constantly spoken at every turn — it is difficult, to say the least, 
to imagine that in all these the letter c has been vitally changed 
in its pronunciation by the Italians and direct descendants of the 

* Plutarch tells us, in his " Qusestiones RomanoD," that the letter g was unknown 
in Rome for five centuries, and was first introduced into use by the grammarian Spurius 
Carvilius, in the year 540 (about 213 b. c). Though this must be a mistake, as it ap- 
pears in the Duillian inscription of 494, and also in the epitaph of Scipio Barbatus, 
who was consul in 456, yet it is plain that it must have been of infrequent use, or he 
would not have made such a statement. In macistratus, Cartaciniensis, Leciones, 
exfociont, c and g were apparently equivalents in sound, as they would be if pro- 
nounced as the Italians now pronounce them, the difference being what in English lies 
between " chin " and " gin." Had they pronounced both these letters hard, they 
could easily have used the letter k (since they were misspelling these words), which 
was already in the alphabet, and appears in a bronze tablet in the Barberini Library 
at the date of the beginning of the fourth century of Rome — " sub aedc kasiorisy 

Again, in late excavations at Ostia the following inscription was found of the early 
Christian times : 

" Loc. Aphrodisias, cum deus permicerit, 

Caelius hie dormit, et Decria, quanda deus 


From a passage in Ausonius it would even seem that c had more the sound of s than 
of k, for without this pronunciation the jest would be lost. Venus says of herself, 
*'Xata salo, suscepta solo, patre edita coelo." If the c be here pronounced as A:, the 
play upon words is lost. So also ceu, seu, sive, point to this pronunciation. 


Romans. For instance, is it probable that such unchanged words 
as the following are all mispronounced now in Italy ? — civitas 
(civita), cervello (cerebellum), celebre, cedo, celere, celare, cella, 
cenere, ciccus, cibus (cibo), cimex (cimice), circa, cippus (cippo), 
cinctura, cista, sacerdos. 

But to pass from these letters, let us now consider what author- 
ity there is for the recommendation in this syllabus that J as a con- 
sonant should be pronounced as in the English " y in yard." This 
undoubtedly is the present pronunciation in Italy, as in Germany, 
but there are manifestly many ol)jectiuns to its acceptance. In the 
ancient alj)habet there was but one letter to represent two entirely 
distinct sounds in two cases : one was the Y and the other the I, 
which were both consonants and vowels. It is this simple fact 
which has led to great confusion in distinguishing the two ; but, if 
the distinction be clearly kept in mind, there will be little difficulty. 
Of the sound of i as a vowel we have already spoken. jT as a con- 
sonant would seem to have had exactly the pronunciation of the 
English J/ and this is clearly indicated by the fact that, whenever 
a word en<ling in a consonant is followed by one beginning with /, 
the last syllable of the first word becomes long by position. Had j 
possesse<l the vowel sound of long i or ?/ (which is simply a com- 
]»ound diphthong oo-a-i when pronounced by its English name, and 
when sounded in a word has the value generally of the vowel ^, as , 
in hiUlard)^ there would in verse be an elision of a preceding vowel, 
or of the letter m. But this is never the case. Open Virgil's JEneid 
anywhere, and examples will be found of this. For instance, here 
is the elision of the vowel before i and not before j in the same 

line : 

Hand cquidem prctio inductus pulchroque juvenco.* 
Pergaraaque Iliacamque jugis banc addidit arcem.f 

And here is the elision of m before i and not before J: 
Nunc etiam interpres divum Jove missus ab ip8o4 

Or take such lines as these, and how can they be scanned if J' is a 

vowel ? 

" Quern sequimur, quove ire jubes, ubi ponere sedes." § 
" Perge ; sequar. Tum sic excepit regia Juno." || 
" Cetera populea velatur fronde juventus." 1" 
" Mutata agnoscunt, excussaque pectore Juno est." * * 

* .Eneid, v., 1. 399. f Id., iii., 1. 336. X Id., iv., 1. 356. 

§ Id., ii., 1. 88. II Id., iv., 1. 134. ^ Id., v., 1. 134. * * Id., v., 1. 679. 


There is not a line to be found in the JEneid where the initial J 
of Jupiter or Juno, or of any word, is subject to an elision. e7"as a con- 
sonant was merely a vai'iation of Di. Zeus, 9e6c, Deus, as well as 
the Sanskrit Deva, derived probably from Djo, or Dyu, heaven, have 
all the same hard consonant sound, and this was never lost in Jupi- 
ter, the Divum Pater or Diespiter. In like manner we have Diovis, 
subsequently spelled Jovis, and Dianus, afterward spelled Janus, 
while Diana still retains its original form. Again, is j ever found 
alone or at the end of a word, and is it not always followed by a 
vowel ? Can it stand by itself ? Does i^t ever follow a consonant ? 

We have already stated that, in our opinion, the Italian pro- 
nunciation cannot be safely followed in all respects, and this is one 
of the exceptions to which we alluded. And the reason of this 
mispronunciation of j (as it seems to us) is very clear. Through 
all the illiterate ages, when the darkness of ignorance was over the 
land, the Italians retained the true pronunciation, but they knew 
not how to write or read. On the revival of letters, they began 
by respelling and rewriting according to their pronunciation ; 
and this spelling will give us the traditional pronunciation. Xow, 
the extraordinary fact is, that there is not a single name, if there be 
a single Latin word, beginning with^, that is not written in Italian 
with gi, and sounded hard like the English J.* The modern Italians 
in reading Latin pronounce J as if it were a vowel, but the true pro- 
nunciation evidently survives in their common speech ; and, as we 
have had occasion before to observe, in the pronunciation of names 
of persons it would be very difficult for any change of a vital char- 
acter to take place. When we find this rule of changing the j of 
the Latin into hard gi in Italian an invariable one, extending over 
hundreds of words, it is difficult not to believe that this was the 
real ancient pronunciation. Jesus also becomes Gesii in Italian, 
though in Latin it is read lesus, probably because the Greek form 
was adopted in the Church after it was removed to the East. The 
mispronunciation oij in Latin is all the more intelligible, because 
the Italians have no single character representing the J in English, 
and in reading it this mistake is natural. In all such words as those 

* Thus among names Julius becomes Giulio ; Johannes, Giovanni ; Julianus, Giu- 
liano ; Josephus, Giuseppe ; Juno, Giunone ; Jupiter or Jovis, Giove ; Jason, Giasone ; 
Jeremias, Geremia ; and so on. Take also all such common words, among hundreds 
of others, as judex, giudice ; jurare, giurare ; Justus, giusto ; jam, gi^ ; juvenis, gio- 
vane ; juvare, giovare ; jugum, giogo ; and so on. Invariably they have the hard 
Bound of the consonant. 


Bpoken of in the syllabus compounded of ai, ei, oi, or tii, such as 
Grains, maior, Troia, eius, Pompeius, cujus, Seianus, the only ques- 
tion is whether the ^ is a vowel or a consonant. If it be a vowel, 
the Italian gives the true sound, which is precisely similar to our y. 
But in all these words is the i a vowel ? Major is in Italian maggi- 
ore, hard and consonantal. In Troja and Sejanus, it is far from 
clear that the^* was not similarly sounded ; at all events, Sejanus is 
still a common name in Italy, and is pronounced hard. In the 
palimpsest of Cicero's orations edited by Amadous Peyron, one 
word at least occurs showing plainly the pronunciation of J, and 
proving that it was not a long i. This is justitianiy which is spelled 

We now come to what seems a still more serious innovation 
upon all accredited forms of utterance, and which is in vogue solely, 
as far as we are aware, among the Germans ; and this is in the pro- 
nunciation of the consonant v. The syllabus says, "As to con- 
sonant M, or V, we believe that its sound was as near as possible to 
that of the vowel n ; that is, like the ou of the French oui, not 
differing much, therefore, from English w. But, as there is great 
diversity of opinion on this point, we propose to leave it an open 
question whether it shall be pronounced in this way or as the Eng- 
lish and Italian r." The Germans pronounce it as if it were simply 
u or ta. Thus they say (to express the sound in English) Waynee, 
weedee, weekee, for Veni, vidi, vici. Against this pronunciation 
we must enter the most positive and absolute protest. 

The confusion which has arisen in regard to the pronunciation 
of this letter is simply due to the fact that the Romans had only 
one character to express two totally different sounds, that of the 
vowel u or oo, and that of the consonant v. If this letter v be al- 
ways pronounced as ?r, which is simply the Italian u, it instantly 
ceases to be a consonant at all, and we must admit that there was 
no consonant v in Latin. It cannot be too strongly insisted that w 
in English is only the Italian vowel u, pronounced oo ; our English 
t^ is a diphthong, eoo. Well is simply nell (ooell) ; wait is iiait (or 
ooait) ; Washington is TJashington or OOashington ^ and so on. 
Now, if any fact on earth is clear, it is that the Romans had a con- 
sonant V, as distinguished from u. It is useless to multiply quota- 
tions from ancient grammarians to establish this point ; one or two 
will suffice. Quintilian expressly states (lib. 1, cap. iv.) that "all 
grammarians admit that certain necessary letters are wanting in 
the Roman alphabet, not only in writing Greek, but also in writing 


Latin — as for instance in these words, servus and vulgus, Not only 
the ^olic digamma is wanting for the consonant, but also the char- 
acter to distinguish the peculiar sound of the second vowel ?i, which 
was something between u and ^." Priscian (cap. De Num. Liter.) 
says, " T^ standing as a consonant had in all words the same force 
as the JEolic digamma, that is, vau^ from which it is derived, as 
Varro and Didymus, who gave it that name, expressly assert." It 
was to supply this deficiency that the Emperor Claudius reintro- 
duced into Latin the sign of the old ^olic digamma, or inverted 
F, thus,^, to represent the consonant ^, which has so close a re- 
semblance to our/* in sound that the Germans constantly confound 
them together in their speech. Quintilian, in his first book (cap. 
viL), alluding again to the deficiency of the Roman alphabet, says 
that ceruum and seruum are by some written ceruom, seruom, in 
order to prevent a confusion between the consonant %i and the vowel 
w, and that later writers use a double v for the same purpose ; and 
he adds, " Not uselessly did Claudius introduce for this purpose the 
letter^" ("Nee inutiliter Claudius ad hos usus^ literam adjece- 
rat.") This innovation, however, did not come into general prac- 
tice, and soon fell into disuse ; but it is to be seen in the inscrip- 
tions of his time, where it indicates our v^ as in OCTji^IA, 
AMPLIA^IT, TERMINA^IT, DI^I, for Octavia, ampliavit, 
terminavit, and Divi. 

What was the sound of the ^olic digamma of the ancient 
Greeks is a matter of dispute, into which we have no space here to 
enter ; suffice it to say that the modern Greeks give to the v^ as in 
avrbg, the sound of our v. If it had the simple sound of the vowel 
u, there would seem to have been no reason for reducing it into 
Latin, to distinguish v from w, as it would have served no purpose. 

That the Latin consonant v was not represented in sound by the 
vowel V of the Greeks is clear, from the fact that the latter employed 
(3 constantly to represent it, having lost the JEolic digamma, ^. 
Thus — Severus, Yarro, Yalentius, Yenusia, and Yalerius, for in- 
stance, were spelled Jle(37]pog, Bdppcov^ BaXevria, and so on, showing 
that the v had not the vowel sound in such words.* 

* In the Ambrosian Library at Milan, cod. 82, is a MS., attributed by Cardinal 
Mai to Quintus Aurelius Syramachus ; and though this is doubted by Amadcus Pey- 
ron, in whose collection of codices the fragment is given, there is every probability 
that it is at least as old as the sixth century. In this MS. b and v are constantly 
written interchangeably : thus, lahoribus is spelled lavorihus ; civica, eibica ; vduscas, 
betustas ; volatas^ bolatas ; revertitur, rebertitur ; absolvunt, absolbunt ; and dcbiiorem^ 


Again, the Italians still retain the sound of our v in all names of 
persons and places which have come do^^Ti from the ancients. As 
we have before obsei'ved, such words would be less subject to alter- 
ation than any others. Thus, Valeria, Virginia, Vittoria, Virgilia, 
Octavia, and Livia may be adduced as examples of the names of 
persons ; and Volterra, Venetia, Verona, Vesuvio, Velabro, among 
many others, as names of places. Is it possible that such names 
were pronounced AVerona, Wenetia, Waleria, or, worse still, Liwia 
and Octawia (which are almost impossibly cacophonous) ? At all 
events, we cannot recall a single name of a person or place in which 
V has the sound of u in Italian, whether occurring in the beginning 
or the middle of the word. On the contrary, there are a number of 
words beginning with u which, in various parts of Italy, still retain 
the sound of our v ; as, for instance, uomo, which is sometimes pro- 
nounced V())no* 

The story told by Cicero, in his " De Divinatione," has been by 
some thought to show that the u was pronounced as w. When Mar- 
cus Crassus carried his anny to Brundisium, a hawker of Caunean 
figs cried out, " Cauneas," which some interpreted as a bad omen, as 
he seemed to be saying " Cave ne eas," beware of going. But if the 
^^]olic diij^amma was a c — if the Greeks are ris^ht in their modern 
pronunciation — then the hawker very nearly said, " Cave ne eas," as 
the Italians would pronounce it. 

The Germans themselves, who claim that the consonant v of the 
ancient Latins was sounded like ic, in their own language, singularly 

devitorem. (" Martii Tullii Ciceronis Orationum Frag, inedita ex Membranis Palimp- 
sestis," by Amadous Pepon, p. 183.) 

Peyron says that in the codices of the tenth century b and v are interchanged in 
more than a thousand instances, and this is also the case with c and i. 

The lines of Terentius Maurus give additional weight to this view. He says : 

" Graeca diphthongus ou Uteris nostris vacat, 
Sola vocalis quod v complet hunc satis sonum." 

Here, of course, he refers to the vowel v or w, and not to the consonant v. 

* Again, compare in Latin such words as fatidicus, fatum, fatuus, vatcs, vaticinus^ 
which are also written vatidicus, etc. — all derived iromfaius — and it is clear that between 
the sound of the / and the v there was but a slight distinction. Still further, if v had 
only the sound of w, what was the object of writing iiva, or uvcsco, or uvea ? It was 
simply superfluous. Or how would it be possible to pronounce uvula ? In the letters 
of Marcus Aurclius to Fronto we also ^ndfribola iov frivola (lib. ii., lib. vi.), and dvo 
for ciho (" De Eloquentia ") ; and in Fronto, viho for vivo (lib. i., lib. viii.) ; and Isi- 
dorus, speaking of the habit of writing thus, says, " Birtus, boluntasjbita et his similia, 
quae Afri scribendo vitiant omnino rejicienda sunt, et non per h sed per v scribenda." 


enough, generally pronounce the w like our v, though they never 
seem accurately to distinguish between them. Yossius says : " V 
efferebant ut German! duplex to; nempe pronunciabant winum, 
wallum, widua, wacillare, unde nostrum wijn, wall, widuwe, wag- 
gelen," etc. ; but the fact is that, instead of pronouncing these words 
with a w, and saying, as we do, wi7ie and widoio, they commonly 
pronounce Wein, Vine ; Witwe, Vitve ; Was, Vas ; Wilhelm, Vil- 
helm ; though there is a sort of burr of lo in some provinces, and in 
others almost a clear tc. Their principles and their practice are, 
therefore, a little at variance. 

It also seems that, so far from the Latins and Italians accepting 
the sound of the w in German names, they changed it into gu, and 
the name Wilhelm, for instance, becomes Guilelmus ; Walter, Gual- 
terus ; which they certainly would never have done had the sound 
been represented by the v. 

As to the qu, it would also seem probable that, in some cases at 
least, it had the sound of k or hard c, since we find in many words 
the c used for the qti, as in quotidie, cotidie ; quum, cum ; loquutus, 
locutus ; quur, cur ; and others. In the letters of Fronto and Mar- 
cus Aurelius, according to the palimpsest MS. discovered by Cardinal 
Mai, this peculiarity constantly appears, and even cur is spelled qur. 
How far this went it is impossible to determine, but it is even pos- 
sible that, after all, the Italian, French, and Spanish chi and qui may 
represent in sound the Latin qui. This, at least, would seem to be 
indicated by the double pun of Cicero, who, being requested to give 
his vote for the son of a cook, answered, "Ego quoque tibi jure 
f avebo," punning on the word quoque, as well as jure. 

Time and space will only allow us to speak briefly of the letter 
s, which, we are told in the syllabus, in the beginning and end of 
words, and at the beginning of syllables and before consonants, is 
always sharp (as the s in sin) in Italian, and should be so in Latin. 
This, certainly, is not always the case in Italian. It not uncom- 
monly has the sound of z, as in deserto, which is pronounced dezerto, 
or misura, which is mezu7'a. 

But, more than even in the sound of the letters, it is to be feared 
that in accents our English pronunciation is entirely wrong. We 
almost always throw the accent backward instead of forAvard, and 
probably are as wrong in so doing as if we should pronounce French 
in like manner. Indeed, this is precisely the vice to which all Eng- 
lish are prone in speaking French. Our ordinary accent of Latin 
words conveys no correct notion of their quantity. It is almost 


impossible in our spoken Latin to distinguish a spondee from a 
trochee or an iambus, and it is only when we scan a verse that we 
accentuate the words according to their real quantity and rhythm. 
But, after all, is it possible that the Romans did not clearly express 
the rhythm of their verses in reading or declaiming them, or that 
the accent of words in verse was totally different in reading from 
what it was in speaking ? Did not the poet follow the real accent 
and quantity of the word as spoken ? Is it credible that in speaking 
they threw the accent backward, and said, for instance, Dulces 
moriens reminiscitur Argus, and in reading threw the accent for- 
ward and said, DulcOs moriOns Argus ? We have laid down elabo- 
rate rules and classifications to indicate the quantity of words, which 
when spoken ordinarily are totally different in quantity and accent ; 
so that our pronunciation gives us no real clew to the quantity of 
any word, to enable us to distinguish a spondee from an iambus or 
a trochee. Is there any living language in which so extraordinary 
a ]»eculiarity occurs? Is any nation forced to consult dictionarieSj 
and encumber its memory with rules of prosody varying from those 
of common speech, in order to write verse in its own language ? 
Yet this is j)recisely what we are forced to do in Latin, and this^f 
itself would be suiiicient to j^rove that our pronunciation is false. 

(7b be continued,) 



The citizens of the United States are of the opinion generally 
that a paper currency, in the form of United States notes (" green- 
backs ") or national-bank notes, is at once more economical and more 
convenient in use than the metals, whether gold or silver. Two 
questions remain which are open to serious dispute : 

1. Shall the paper currency be redeemable in coin ? 

2. "\Yhether so redeemable or not, shall it be exclusively of 
greenbacks, exclusively of national-bank notes, or a currency com- 
posed in part of each ? 

The notion that a government may make a declaration upon a 
piece of paper, that the piece of paper on which the declaration is 
made is one dollar or one thousand dollars, the difference being a 
difference of typography alone, is a very modern notion, which one 
of its advocates attempts to dignify by calling it " the American 
system of finance." As a notion it is American, but as a system it 
has as yet no existence in this or in any other country. Experi- 
ments containing everything that is proposed by the advocates of 
this experiment, and something advantageous in addition thereto, 
have been tried, and in every instance they have failed. 

The French notes called assignats asserted first their value re- 
spectively, and they were also made receivable for all public and 
private obligations and debts. The national domain was pledged 
for their redemption, the penalty of death was declared against 
counterfeiters, the nation promised to recompense informers, and 
art contributed an efiigy of the goddess of justice holding the 
scales evenly balanced, and an effigy of the goddess of liberty an- 
nouncing the rights of man. Yet, in spite of all these declarations, 
safeguards, and inducements, the French assignats became utterly 
worthless, and were stowed away in closets and garrets until the 
civil war in America, when the neglected accumulations were brought 
out and sold to the manufacturers of new paper. Every quality of 


goodness which the genius of our American financial reformers has 
yet suggested may be found in the French assignats, with the prom- 
ise of redemption added thereto ; and yet they depreciated in pur- 
chasing power, and disappeared finally from the business channels 
of the country. 

Again, the experiment was tried by the Southern Confederacy 
during the civil war. The notes of that government were endowed 
with every quality that is proposed for the currency to be issued 
under " the American system of finance," to all which was added a 
stipulation as to redemi)tion — remote and contingent, to be sure, 
but not more harmful, it would seem, than a pledge perpetual of 
non-payment. In the end it could be said truthfully of that Amer- 
ican system of finance, that a householder would carry his money 
to market in a basket, and take home his dinner in his waistcoat 

Our own experience was the same in kind, though not so disas- 
trous in the results. The greenback bore a declaration of its value, 
supported by the promise of the Government to pay the holder 
thereof, at a time future but not specified, a sum in gold or silver 
coin equal to the value declared. It was receivable by the Govern- 
ment for postage, for excise and direct taxes, and it was a legal ten- 
der for all private debts ; and yet, in spite of its qualities and uses, 
and the obligations it carried wath it, the greenback depreciated 
until it was worth in gold no more than thirty-five cents on the 

The advocates of ''the American system of finance" have one 
position only ; and if that be indefensible, then their scheme is a 
failure altogether. It is this : A government, by its official and 
absolute decree, can give to that which has no appreciable value in 
itself a continuing, commercial purchasing power. The attempt to 
do this was made in fact, though not in form, by France, by the 
Southern Confederacy, and by the United States, and in each in- 
stance the undertaking was a failure. Further, it is to be said that 
the history of the world furnishes no evidence of the success of the 
experiment in any country or in any age. Is it urged that the fail- 
ure in all these cases was due to circumstances ? If so, then the 
power claimed for a government is not an absolute power, but only 
a capacity to do a certain thing when the circumstances are all favor- 
able. There have been three trials by three different governments, 
under differing conditions, at times quite remote from each other, 
and each and every of the trials was a signal failure. Thus far all 


the circumstances have been unfavorable, if tested by the results ; 
and who among the prophets can forecast the circumstances that 
wait on success ? 

In the presence of this experience, is the suggestion out of place 
that there may be inherent difficulties attending the project which 
the advocates of " the American system of finance " can not remove ? 
A piece of plain paper, of the size of a United States note, is of so 
little intrinsic value as to defy expression except in vulgar or deci- 
mal fractions. The proposition is, that by the mere declaration of 
a government imprinted upon this paper it at once takes on the 
quality of value, or that all men will so assume, and upon the as- 
sumption so act in all the business affairs of the country. 

The statement of this absurdity in the alternative ought to be 
its refutation. Can a government, a mere human government, cre- 
ate something out of nothing — make that valuable which, in the 
opinion of all mankind, is valueless ? Or, if it can not do that or 
this, can it by a decree so change the opinions of men in mass that 
tney will accept as valuable that which in fact has no value, and 
after experience so continue to act through indefinite periods of 
time ? The best evidence that men might be so deluded is to be 
found in the wickedness of those who propose the measure and in 
the folly of those who accept it. The existence of such classes, 
even though they bear a small proportion only to the whole, is sug- 
gestive of a state of society in which the wildest absurdities and 
the most dangerous vagaries may flourish for a time. 

When the advocates of fiat money propose to limit its issue, or 
when they assert that the failure of previous experiments was due 
to the limitation of uses to which the currency was applicable, as 
the refusal of the Government to accept greenbacks for customs du- 
ties, they admit that the quality of value does not inhere in paper 
decreed money by a government. And if paper bearing the decree 
of a govei-nment that it is money have no intrinsic value, and if it 
carry not a promise of some other thing that is valuable, then it 
lacks each and both the essential qualities of a currency. Having 
in itself no value, and not bearing on its face a promise of some- 
thing of value, no man in his senses would surrender actual property 
in exchange for it. 

Every business transaction, from the barter of a dozen of eggs 
for a pound of sugar to the sale and purchase of an empire, has in 
it as the essential quality one or the other of two conditions and 
stipulations — either the exchange of one thing of value for another 


thing of value, or the surrender of one thing of value for the prom- 
ise of another thing of value. The ciuTency of a country, the cur- 
rency of the world, the medium of exchange — that is, the means by 
which transfers of i)roi)crty from one to another are effected — must 
answer to one or the other of these conditions. It must be either 
valuable in itself, or it must bear on its face the promise of some- 
thing valuable to him who receives it. 

A conspicuous leader in financial reform, and the author of the 
phrase "the American system of finance," has admitted recently 
that there must be a limit to the issue of fiat money ; and it is the 
general assertion of the friends of the system that the issue is to be 
limited to the wants of trade. These concessions are an admission 
that what is called fiat money has no intrinsic value ; and as it car- 
ries no promise of redemption in any valuable thing, it lacks mani- 
festly both the essential qualities of a currency. Its capacity for 
circulation must depend, therefore, upon the prevalence of the ad- 
mitted error that it is valuable. The advocates of this scheme may 
wisely consider whether a public policy w^hich rests upon an appa- 
rent and actual falsehood can long withstand the assaults of truth. 

It is a po])ular saying that the currency of the country should 
be sufiicient for the wants of trade. If it is meant by this that the 
currency should be sutlicient to satisfy the wants of tradesmen, 
there is reason to apprehend that the limit would never be reached. 
The truth is, that the honest wants of trade are limited by the rights 
of trade, and the rights of trade are easily understood when we ex- 
amine its nature. As before stated, trade is the exchange of one 
thing of value for another thing of value, or the surrender of one 
thing of value for the promise of another thing of value. When, 
therefore, the possessor of property yields his title to another, he 
should receive other property in return or a promise of other prop- 
erty ; and when this is not done, he is the subject of a wrong. 

Upon the argument already presented it is apparent that the 
currency of a country should either be intrinsically valuable, or it 
should bear a promise that the holder may at his pleasure command 
the sum specified in that which possesses intrinsic value. The hon- 
est wants of trade can not be made to extend beyond a currency 
possessing one or the other of these qualities ; and a currency pos- 
sessing either of these qualities, from the nature of the case, must 
be limited in amount. 

The friends of the fiat system of money dogmatize thus : The 
Government takes a piece of gold, stamps upon it one dollar, makes 


no provision for its redemption, and it passes from hand to hand, 
answering all the purposes of business ; and if the Government but 
so will, it may do the same with a piece of paper and with the same 
results. As the agent to be employed, to wit, the Government, is 
the same in both cases, the proposition must be true unless there is 
an intrinsic difference between a piece of gold and a piece of paper ; 
but if a difference shall be made to appear, then with equal certainty 
is the proposition false. 

In this connection it may not be amiss to consider the fact that 
there is not a human being in any civilized country who, having in 
his possession an article of property with which he is willing to part, 
will not dispose of it for a quantity of gold. This statement is 
equally true of every civilized nation during the entire historical pe- 
riod ; and with slight qualifications, it is also true of semi-civilized 
and savage races and tribes of men. Can this be said of paper, 
whether tendered in its ofiice of money or otherwise ? There is a 
universal desire for gold, and gold is the only product of nature or 
of art for which a universal desire exists. 

Next it is to be said that the act of the Government in coining 
gold does not in any sensible degree affect its value.- The piece of 
gold stamped one dollar had the same intrinsic value when it en- 
tered the mint as when it came from the mint, and its nominal value 
conforms very nearly to its intrinsic value. The Government assays 
the gold, weighs the gold, stamps the coin for the convenience of 
those who have occasion to use it ; but if the agency of the Gov- 
ernment Avere withheld, the owner of gold could purchase every- 
thing that he might desire in all the markets of the world. Can 
the same be said of paper, even though coined, to use a favorite 
word of the friends of " the American system of finance " ? 

Further, it is to be said of gold that its cost, measured by the 
application of human labor to its production, is equal to its pur- 
chasing power of other articles which are also the products of labor. 
Can this be said of coined paper dollars, of fiat paper, of paper 
which carries no promise of redemption ? By the use of steam and 
power presses the Government could produce a million dollars of 
coined fiat paper money by an expenditure of labor paid in gold 
not exceeding one hundred dollars. A million dollars of gold brought 
out of the Rocky Mountains costs in labor as much as the quantity 
of wheat brought out of the prairies that the million of gold will 

Nor should the suggestion be omitted that the human mind can 


not conceive of such an addition to the quantity of gold as to de- 
stroy its value either in mass or as coin. The purchasing power of 
a given weight or of a specific coin would diminish by an increase 
of production, but gold would still remain the one solvent of every 
financial transaction. On the other hand, no one, not even the 
wildest advocate of an irredeemable currency, denies the possibility 
of such an issue of paper, whatever its nature or form, as to render 
it in its parts and as a whole utterly valueless. 

If the distinctions pointed out are not altogether visionary, they 
furni>h a complete refutation of the proposition that, inasmuch as 
the Government coins gold, stamps it, and makes no provision for 
its redemption, it may therefore safely and wisely coin paper, stamp 
it, issue it, and leave it to its fate. 

Underlying all the visionary theories of the advocates of irre- 
deemable paper money is the error that value or wealth is created 
by human agency. What we call wealth, the result of human labor 
and the object of human desire, is, in the specific things of value, 
but the product of the combination of forces and elements pre- 
viously existing. The province of man is to change the position of 
things, to make new combinations, to call to his aid the forces of 
nature. By the use of these processes and agencies, which demand 
labor on his i)art, he produces articles of value ; and the general 
rule is, that the value is measured by the labor required. 

Proceeding upon the view submitted that an irredeemable paper 
currency, as a permanent public policy, is incompatible with na- 
tional honesty or private prosperity, it remains to be said that the 
use of paper redeemable in coin is not free from peril ; but it is at 
once the most convenient and the most economical means of trans- 
acting both public and private business. When there is but little 
demand for coin in a country, as in the United States at the present 
time, it is possible for the Government and the banks to increase 
the issue of notes, even though redeemable in coin, to such an extent 
as to inflame prices, promote speculations, and involve merchants 
and business men in distress and bankruptcy. This is the tendency, 
and under the old State-bank system it was a frequent result. 
There are, however, counteracting influences. An advance in prices 
is soon followed by a change in the balance of trade. Exports 
diminish, imports increase, and the result is a demand for coin. The 
apprehension of such a demand operates as a check upon banks, and 
they avoid a course of action which they foresee can end only in 
disaster. If, however, the precautionary policy is not adopted gen- 


erally, a change in the balance of trade and a demand for coin fur- 
nish an early and wholesome corrective of any over-issue of paper. 
This corrective is equally efficacious whether the issues of paper are 
by the Government directly or through the agency of banks. 

The old theories in favor of an exclusively metallic currency 
have disappeared. When financial transactions, both public and 
private, were limited in amount, when in the agricultural sections 
of the country the business was chiefly by barter, and when there 
were but few opportunities of communicating with the centers of 
wealth and trade, a partiality for a metallic currency was both 
natural and wise. But the condition of the country has changed 
in the nature and magnitude of its productions, in the habits of 
business of its inhabitants, especially of the agricultural sections, 
and in the means of communication. These changes involve the 
disuse of coin for ordinary business, and the substitution of paper, 
whose volume and quality can only be fixed by the circumstance 
that the holder may at any moment command the coin of the Gov- 
ernment or bank by whose authority the paper was issued. 

The securities against an over-issue of paper redeemable in coin 
are : first, a public judgment expressed in the laws of the country ; 
then the wisdom and foresight of those intrusted with the manage- 
ment of the issues, whether by the national Treasury or by the 
banks ; and, at last, the correctionary force of the inevitable de- 
mand for coin when the balance of trade is against us. While it 
can not be maintained that these securities will prove sufficient at 
all times, it can be said with truth that the wisdom of men and the 
laws of business have as yet furnished none better. 

The convenience of paper as compared with coin is established 
by the fact that a thousand dollars of silver weighs about sixty 
pounds, and an equal value of gold weighs more than one twentieth 
as much. Such is the magnitude of business, both public and pri- 
vate, that its transaction would be impossible if only coin could be 

The relative economy of paper is worthy of notice also. The 
annual interest on a metallic circulation stifficient for the country 
would not be less than $25,000,000 ; while the interest upon the 
coin reserve in the banks and the national Treasury need not be 
more than one third of that amount. Coin in general use deteri- 
orates annually by abrasion about one per cent. ; and the final 
losses of coin by individuals are a loss of property to the country, 
while the loss of paper by the owner is a gain to the bank issuing 


it, or to the national Treasury, of an equal amount. The use of 
fractional subsidiary coins in place of fractional notes involves a 
loss to the Government of not less than 8400,000 a year, and im- 
poses upon the whole public a heavy burden in their use. If to the 
old system of fractional paper money there should be added a fea- 
ture of redemption of mutilated currency by the post-offices, our 
change-money would be at once both economical and agreeable. 

The conclusions to which assent is now asked are : first, that a 
paper currency is more convenient and economical than a currency 
of coin ; and, secondly, that the paper currency should at all times 
be redeemable in coin at the pleasure of the holder. 

For further consideration there remains the question : Shall the 
paper currency so redeemable be exclusively of United States notes, 
exchisively of national-bank notes, or shall it be composed in part 
of each ? 

It is the fortune of nations, as of individuals, that there is never 
a moment of time when they are so entirely free from all obliga- 
tions as to be absolute masters of their own policy and conduct. 
Our financial policy has been dictated in its most important fea- 
tures by events and circumstances over which the nation had no 
control. An im])erative necessity for money led to the overthrow 
of the State banking system, and the establishment of the national 
banking system in its stead. The same necessity compelled Con- 
gress to authorize the issue of greenbacks, and as early as 1862 to 
give a pledge in advance to those who might purchase our bonds 
that nothinc: but coin should be received for duties at the custom- 
houses, and that the coin so received should be applied to the pay- 
ment of the interest and a portion each year of the principal of the 
public debt. If the faith of the nation is kept, nothing but coin can 
be received at the custom-houses, and the coin so received must be 
used in payment of the interest of the public debt, and each year to 
the extent of one per cent, of the principal, the latter appropriation 
to be treated as a sinking fund. This pledge creates a use for coin 
which will continue until the public debt is paid. 

Out of our necessities as a nation came the issue of greenbacks 
and the national banks with their privilege of issuing notes, and the 
questions now are : Shall we abandon both, shall we abandon either, 
or shall we continue to use both ? To the extent of the volume of 
greenbacks in circulation the Government enjoys the benefit of the 
amount represented, and without the payment of interest. They 
constitute a debt without interest. Their redemption implies the 
VOL. cxxviii. — NO. 266. 6 


increase of the interest-bearing debt to a like amount, or the use of 
moneys or revenues which otherwise would be applied to the pay- 
ment of the interest-bearing debt. As a currency the greenback is 
entirely satisfactory. Waiving the fact that hitherto the Govern- 
ment has not been prepared to redeem the greenback, it may be 
said with entire confidence that no nation ever had a better paper 

The national-bank notes are guaranteed by a pledge of Govern- 
ment stocks, and they are redeemed daily in greenbacks at the 
Treasury of the United States. In commercial value they are 
equal to greenbacks, and both circulate in every part of the coun- 
try, without question and without loss. The item of exchange no 
longer appears as an expense in domestic commercial transactions, 
or upon the note-book of the traveler. 

If we could treat the subject of finance solely as a question of 
profit and loss to the national Treasury, there would be no reason 
why we should not abandon the national banking system, and issue 
an amount of greenbacks equal to the volume of bank notes with- 
drawn. Something would be gained by the change. The interest 
saved by the substitution would slightly exceed the revenue now 
obtained by the States and nation from the taxation of the banks — 
say five million dollars a year. The province of a bank is, by the 
aggregations of capital represented by its stock, and by the receipt 
of moderate sums of money deposited by its patrons, to mass funds, 
and therefrom to make loans to merchants and manufacturers. 
Thereby they become aids to business. The profits of banks are 
derived from original capital, from circulation, and from deposits. 
Should the General Government assume the entire circulation of 
the country, the profits of banks would be limited to capital and 
deposits. At present the profits of country banks are derived 
chiefly from capital and circulation, while in the cities the profits 
are mainly from capital and deposits. The change proposed would 
deprive the country banks of the means of existence, and .the pro- 
portion of surplus capital in the cities would be greater than it now 
is. Business must follow capital, and the change would tend to 
promote the wealth and population of cities at the expense of the 
country. The tendency to the cities is sufficiently strong already, 
but the abolition of the national banks would be an important aid 
in the same direction. 

It would happen, however, that the abolition of the national 
banks would be followed by the restoration of the State-bank sys- 


tern. The interior States and sparsely settled sections of country 
would not long rest quietly under a system which tended to im- 
poverish them and to enricli the most wealthy sections of the Union. 
The overthrow of the national banks means the recstablishment of 
the State-bank system, and the movement should be so treated. 
This will be the result, whatever may be the purpose of those who 
advocate the destruction of the national banks. These institutions 
are creditors to the amount of more than 8800,000,000, and in pros- 
perous times the a[T<rregatc liabilities to them of merchants and 
manufacturers would not be less than 81,000,000,000. The people 
and the authorities may wisely consider whether the overthrow of a 
system by which the debtor class will be compelled to pay $1,000,- 
000,000, and to find credits elsewhere for the conduct of their busi- 
ness, can be effected without a shock that will touch every interest 
of society. 

Nor is it easy to see how the restoration of the State system 
would benefit the national Treasury. The revenue derived from 
the present system amounts to more than 87,000,000 a year, which 
is to be considered in set-off against the advantages which the banks 
derive from their circulation. The States realize about 89,000,000 

In time, were the change effected, there would arise a conflict 
of interest between the General Government and the State banks. 
The circulation of national-bank notes and of greenbacks is now 
quite equal to the capacity of the country to maintain them at par 
with coin. The scheme i)ro})Osed assumes that the bank notes are 
to be withdrawn and the volume of greenbacks increased by a cor- 
responding amount, leaving the aggregate where it now is. This 
being done, an issue of notes by State banks would increase the 
volume of currency, and we should be again involved in the diffi- 
culties of an excessive volume of paper money, or the national Gov- 
ernment would be re(iuired to retire greenbacks in proportion to the 
issue of State-bank notes. 

Finally, after debate and controversy were over, the practical 
questions would be : Shall we have a currency composed in part of 
greenbacks and in part of national-bank notes, or a currency com- 
posed in part of greenbacks and in part of State-bank notes ? Shall 
we have a national currency under the control of the General Gov- 
ernment and everywhere uniform, or shall we have a currency under 
the control of thirty- eight or more States, without uniformity of 
value, and subject to such rules and methods of redemption as the 


cliiierent States may provide ? If the view taken be sound, the 
abolition of banks of circulation is an impossibility, and the prac- 
tical question is : Shall those banks be controlled by the several 
States or by the nation ? 

The banking system is now free, and the amount of capital em- 
ployed from time to time will be determined by the business of the 
country. The resumption of specie payments will check the busi- 
ness of banking, and there is no reason to anticipate any consider- 
able increase of banking capital within the next two years. Fur- 
ther, it is probable that the Government can keep in circulation 
from $300,000,000 to $850,000,000 in greenbacks. The law pro- 
vides for the issue of certificates of the denomination of ten dollars 
and upward upon a deposit of silver coin. Ultimately, unless the 
act authorizing the coinage of silver is repealed, these certificates 
will form a part of the currency of the country. AYhen that time 
arrives, the means of the Government to pay specie will be limited 
to the use of silver, and thus greenbacks and silver certificates will 
be of the same value. Under the silver bill there will be a steady 
addition to the volume of paper money, varying from $24,000,000 
to $48,000,000 a year. This addition will be sufticient to produce a 
perceptible increase in prices, estimated in silver — an increase which 
ought to satisfy those who think that the legislation in regard to 
resumption has been beneficial to the creditor class and injurious to 
the debtor class. In truth, neither class has been affected seriously 
by the legislation of the last ten years. Since 18G8 there has been 
no contraction in the volume of paper money which can be pleaded 
in justification of the statement that our financial troubles are at- 
tributable to that cause. Nor has legislation contributed to the 
causes and processes by which the premium on gold has been di- 

The opening of the South to business furnished a new field for 
the use of paper. In these ten years population and business have 
increased, and the uses of money have increased also. These causes 
have produced the same results as would have flowed from an actual 
contraction in the absence of any new demand for money. 

In prosperous times capital is in the hands of borrowers ; in 
periods of depression it returns to its owners. Thus it happens 
that for the purposes of business the currency has been contracted 
in the sections of country where capital was most needed. 

The depression of business, reducing the cost of domestic prod- 
ucts, has stimulated our exports, and the same causes have dimin- 


ished our imports. The result is, that the balance of trade is in 
our favor, the demand for gold for export has ceased, the products 
of our mines accumulate in the Treasury and bank vaults, and the 
premium on gold has disappeared. 

The ability of the country to resume specie payments is not due 
to legislation, but to a condition of affairs which laws could neither 
create nor prevent. The suspension of railway-building, the dis- 
covery of dynamite, and the invention of the Burleigh drill are 
the contributors of chief force to the present financial condition of 
the country ; and dynamite an<] the power-drill will remain as aids 
to the Government in maintaining specie payments. 

George S. Boutwell. 




The vessel selected for the preliminary Arctic expedition of 
1877 was the Florence of New London, a schooner of fifty-six tons 
burden, built for the whaling trade, and but recently returned from 
a sealing voyage around Cape Horn. Her mission was to collect, 
in the Gulf of Cumberland, Esquimaux, dogs, sledges, and clothing 
for the main expedition, which it was then hoped Congress would 
authorize for the ensuing year. She was rapidly fitted out and pre- 
pared for a winter in the Arctic seas, and sailed from New London 
Harbor on the morning of the 3d of August, 1877, under command 
of Captain George E. Tyson, of Polaris and ice-drift fame, with 
two scientists as passengers — Mr. O. T. Sherman of New Haven, 
meteorologist, and Mr. Ludwig Kumlien, naturalist — and a crew of 
ten men, all provisioned for a fifteen months' absence. ' The Flor- 
ence carried a complete whaling outfit in addition to her other sup- 
plies ; but the peculiar nature of her mission lifted the enterprise 
from the level of an ordinary whaling voyage to the higher plane 
of geographical discovery, in which the whole scientific world ex- 
pressed a lively interest. 

As the season was far advanced, the most direct route, through 
the Straits of Belle Isle, was taken. On the 20th of August a large 
bark was fallen in with, by which letters were sent home via Scot- 
land ; and from this time nothing occurred to vary the usual monot- 
ony of life on shipboard until September 2d, when Resolution Isl- 
and was sighted. Heavy fogs had prevailed during the whole voy- 
age to this time, and now prevented a landing on this island for a 
boat-load of natives, as had been originally intended. It was de- 
termined, therefore, to grope along through the fog to the gulf. 

Soon after losing sight of the island, the vessel had a narrow 
escape from destruction. The sound of breakers warned the look- 


out of the presence of several large icebergs, against which the 
surf was dashing furiously ; and in sheering off from this danger 
breakers were again heard, this time proceeding from one of the 
small islands with which the straits are studded. At this moment 
the fog lifted, and showed on the other side a large iceberg, so close 
that a biscuit could have been tossed upon it from the vessel. The 
only chance of escape was to pass between the two before the ice- 
berg drifted closer in shore. The wind was fortunately blowing 
fresh, and, putting the helm about, the little schooner shot through 
the dangerous channel like a thing of life, and berg and island dis- 
appeared from view in the fog. 

Niantilic Harbor was reached on this 12th of September, when 
several Scotch whalers were found, who reported others at the 
Kickerton Islands farther up the gulf. Their presence here was 
unexpected, and compelled Captain Tyson to push on beyond these 
islands, to a point that could not be reached with safety by the larger 
vessels. Before doing this, however, it was necessary to secure 
the services of some natives ; and, as the able-bodied ones were all 
absent on the annual deer-hunt, an enforced delay occurred. The 
two scientists im])roved the time — Mr. Sherman by taking regular 
observations on shore, and Mr. Kumlien in collecting birds and 
other specimens along the coast. 

On the 27th of September a number of boats Were observed 
coming off to the schooner, filled with Esquimaux, men, women, 
and children. They were soon alongside, over the rail, and on 
deck, and i)roved a motley-looking set. They were strangely spot- 
ted with grease and dirt combined, the dark-bro^vn skin showing 
behind the spots. They had been in the mountains hunting for two 
months, with no opportunity for washing. Soap is unknown among 
the natives who do not live convenient to the coasts frequented by 
the whalers, and many of them come into the world and go out of 
it without knowing the civilized luxury of a wash. The present 
visit was one of ceremony, and, as many of the older ones had 
known Tyson when he wintered on the gulf years before, of friend- 
ship also. Several of the females brought their little ones, carried 
in hoods upon their backs ; their cries, the howling of the dogs 
from the boats alongside, and the continual chatter of the men and 
women, made a pandemonium, from which relief was finally ob- 
tained by giving each native in turn a " glass of grog," when they 
separated in high spirits. Among the natives was a namesake of 
Captain Tyson, with a wife and two little ones ; and these remained 


with the Florence until forced to leave her when she sailed for the 
United States the ensuing year. When the ships first began to 
winter in the gulf, the sailors, finding the native names hard to re- 
member and difficult to pronounce, amused themselves by bestow- 
ing English ones instead. In this way the present visitor, then a 
sprightly youth, was named after Captain Tyson, who had taken a 
fancy to him. 

On the 1st of October the Florence left Niantilic for the head 
of the gulf, laden almost to the water's edge with the extra cargo 
of natives and their household effects. The wind blew quite a gale 
soon after leaving the harbor, and the water washing over the 
deck drove the Esquimaux below, and some of them took shelter in 
the officers' cabin, one old woman even taking possession of the 
captain's berth. At Kickerton Islands a brief stop was made ; and 
on the 7th of the month Annanatook Harbor was reached, when 
the vessel went into winter quarters. Several Esquimau families 
found on shore were joined by those brought in the Florence, and 
the preliminary Polar Colony fairly organized. From this date 
until the schooner broke out in July of the next year, from thirty- 
five to forty natives were fed daily from its stores. 

A lookout for whales was stationed on the small island which 
sheltered the vessel ; and Mr. Sherman was also located on shore 
for the winter, in an observatory constructed from a wall-tent, some 
boards, two small windows, and a stove. Later in the season this 
tent was surrounded with blocks of snow, which effectually pro- 
tected the inmates from cold, and enabled them both (for Mr. 
Kumlien shared its accommodation) to pursue their labors free from 
interruption and with comparative comfort. 

The male portion of the natives were sent out seal-hunting daily, 
but the women were idle, as they will not work upon deer-skins 
until the water is frozen over, owing to a superstitious fear that by 
doing so they will bring misfortunes upon themselves or friends. 
One of their native ceremonies, called ankoote, was performed dur- 
ing the latter part of October, to propitiate the spirits which watch 
over the whaling interests. To insure a favorable response from 
these spirits, certain presents are required, including a liberal allow- 
ance of spirits of a more material nature. The result of the cere- 
mony was quite satisfactory, and a night's debauch on shore, free 
from the presence of white men, who would render it inoperative, 
was speedily followed by the capture of the only whale obtained 
during the voyage. This whale was landed about forty miles be- 


low the vessel, and the bone extracted and brought up on sledges 
during the winter. One of the sailors was badly frozen while en- 
gaged in the capture, and at the date of this writing has not fully 

On December Ist ice had formed as far as the eye could reach. 
While opening some boxes on this date, one was found that had 
been sent by Colonel Lupton, of the Interior Department in Wash- 
ington, a former friend of Captain Hall. It contained a framed 
portrait of that lamented navigator, and a snuill flag which accom- 
panied Drs. Kane and Hayes, and also Captain Hall, on their peril- 
ous expeditions to the North. The portrait and flag were carefully 
preserved, and are now in possession of the writer, who hopes to 
see the flag yet planted farther north than has hitherto been reached 
by civilized man. 

In February a child was bom to one of the native families. 
During the j)eriod of child-birth the female Esquimau is compelled 
to remain alone in a small snow hut especially prepared for her. 
Here, in solitude and without human aid, she stays until the pains 
of labor are over, when she washes and dresses the child and re- 
turns to the bosom of her family. Infanticide is practiced exten- 
sively, although but very few male children are destroyed. Among 
the western tribes it is carried to such an extent with the female 
children that at this time there are not enough women to furnish 
wives for the men, who are in consequence obliged to seek them 
among strange tribes. 

The month of March came in with very cold weather, but a 
clear and bright sky. The coldest day experienced was January 
21st, when the thermometer fell to 53° Falir. ; but the longest sus- 
tained period of cold was from March 5th to the 13th, when the 
temperature was quite steady at 40° below zero. 

Toward the latter part of the month the weather moderated, 
and the natives selected their location for the young-sealing, each 
Esquimau taking a section several miles in extent. These seals 
are their principal food in winter, and are much different from the 
kiotlck or saddle-backs, as they are called by the whalers. These 
latter have their young on the pack ice, and are easy to capture. 
They are found in thousands, the ice being at times black with 
them as far as the eye can reach. The netzik, more timid than its 
cousin the kloticky has its young under the ice, or between the ice 
and snow. It chooses a place where the snow lies deep upon the 
ice, and, commencing from below, will burrow a resting-place be- 


tween the hard sea ice and the snow, perhaps fifteen feet long and 
six feet wide, with a hole at an extremity to afford access to the 
burrow or egress to the sea. As this resting-place is covered with 
snow to the depth of several feet, the aid of dogs is necessary in 
hunting them. When young, the fur of these seals makes excel- 
lent clothing. 

The Esquimaux were found to believe in a Supreme Being, and 
also in a place of future punishment. On the death of one of their 
number, if a man, they place his hunting equipments in the grave 
to assist him in finding his way to the next world. This custom 
enabled Mr. Kumlien to obtain many interesting specimens which 
would otherwise have escaped him. The survivors appear to have 
little feeling of reverence for the dead, as they cheerfully aided 
Kumlien to despoil of their contents such graves as he wished to 
open. The sailors, more civilized, did not approve of this sacri- 
lege ; and it was only by stealth that his specimens thus obtained 
were got on board the Florence. As some of them are quite valu- 
able, it is gratifying to know that they reached the United States 
in safety, and now form part of the Smithsonian collection. 

Auroras were of almost nightly occurrence, but none of remark- 
able brilliancy were observed. Coronas, parhelia, and other celes- 
tial phenomena were also noted, and will be more fully described 
by ]VIr. Sherman, within whose province their record naturally 

In the latter part of March social life at the colony was bright- 
ened by a wedding between one of the local belles and a young 
Esquimau from below. The day after the ceremony the happy 
couple started off upon a sealing instead of a bridal tour. Their 
equipage consisted of an old sleigh drawn by three good dogs and 
a lame one, deer skins for their nuptial couch, blubber and seal 
meat, with a little molasses and tea from the ship's stores for their 
wedding feast. At times when the hunters had been more than 
usually successful, the officers and scientists of the expedition in- 
dulged in the luxury of a feast upon the livers of the female seal, 
which are highly prized as a gastronomic delicacy. 

One of the natives named Chuny was quite intelligent, and 
communicated to the whites many legends and traditions of his 
people. Among these was the following account of the manner in 
which dogs were first obtained : The primitive Esquimaux early 
felt the need of some animal to draw them to and fro in their hunt- 
ing expeditions, and therefore importuned the Great Spirit for re- 


lief. They made a rude harness of seal thongs, placed it near some 
large white rocks in the remote north, and returned to their homes; 
and in a brief time a fine dog team fully equipped made its appear- 

Domestic infelicity exists even among the icy regions of Cum- 
berland Gulf. On the 1st of April a native from Katernuna ar- 
rived at the Florence colony in search of his runaway wife. She 
was found without difficulty, but persistently refused to acknowl- 
edge the husband's authority, and he was forced to return without 

It is one of the observed peculiarities of the gulf region, that 
in the coldest seasons the water in certain localities does not freeze 
over. The most solid-looking winter ice is open here and there, in 
pools and hollows worn by the action of currents and tides. The 
massive ice which surrounded the little Florence had a tidal rise 
and fall of twenty-four feet. At the full tides the crunching and 
grinding of the ice, the dashing of the water, the gurgling of the 
eddies, and the toppling over of the nicely poised ice tables along 
the shores, imjjress the beholder with an awe-inspiring sense of 
power. In these open holes the seals are found in great numbers 
through the winter, and they are therefore favorite resorts for the 
hunters. Even here hunting is not without danger, as the tides 
run with such force as to frequently detach large masses of ice 
around the openings, and, lifting them up on edge, will carry them 
under the main floes. 

On the 5th of April one little snow-white bird made its appear- 

The quantity of moisture in the air produced at times very 
beautiful effects, when congealed by frost upon the masts and rig- 
ging of the Florence, decking her out in bridal array. 

The inactive habits of the men, with plenty of food, produce 
some astonishing results. The cabin boy, a slight youth of eigh- 
teen when he left New London, had increased to a weight of one 
hundred and seventy pounds by the following April. A part of 
his duty was to go on shore daily for the regular allowance of seal 
meat, which he brought off to the vessel on a little hand-sled. 
Being a round and rosy-faced youth, he became a great favorite 
among the dusky damsels of the colony, who would reserve for his 
special use the choicest delicacies of the season. 

By the middle of April the weather became warm, and the crew 
and natives amused themselves by playing ball on the ice. 


The following account of Lake Kennedy, a large body of fresh 
water to the west of the winter quarters of the Florence, is given 
by Captain Tyson : The approximate location of the lake is in lati- 
tude 66° north and longitude 73° west, but has not been accurately 
determined, as it is not known to have been visited by white men 
previous to the year 1876. The natives often speak of this great 
lake, of its fish and game, including seal, and of its great size. The 
land about it is a vast plain or prairie, stoneless and treeless, but 
covered in summer with tall grass, upon which the reindeer feed in 
immense numbers. The natives visit the lake every spring to hunt 
reindeer, of which they kill great numbers. They all agree in their 
statements of the size of the lake and of the abundance of game 
and fish. In the spring it is the resort of thousands of birds which 
breed there. Among these birds are several species of geese, the 
young of which the squaAvs destroy in vast numbers, and pile in 
heaps for dog food. The soil about the lake is dark and abounds 
in fossils. Considered from a scientific point of view, this section 
is interesting, and it is possible that in a pecuniary one it could be 
made profitable. It is not probable that so inviting an Arctic para- 
dise will long remain unexplored, Mr. Kumlien occasionally joined 
the Esquimaux in their visits to this lake and in their seal-hunts, 
but none of the other members of the expedition felt active enough 
to do so. 

The natives are nearly always traveling, either in the mountains 
deer-hunting, or over the snow-clad ice floes in search of seals or 
bears ; and, being light, strong, and muscular, they have greater 
powers of endurance than the heavier and less active white men. 
The natives can also sleep upon the ice when tired, and when hun- 
gry can easily satisfy their appetite upon such provisions as the 
country affords. White men, as was proved in the case of Captain 
Hall, can accustom themselves to the same mode of life ; and it is 
for the purpose of effecting this that the colonization plan of ex- 
ploration is proposed. 

The case of Nep-e-ken, Tyson's boy, is an instance of the in- 
herent skill and courage of the natives. Although not more than 
five years of age, he captured six young seals while the Florence 
lay at Annanitook ; and it was reported that he had been equally 
successful the preceding year. In addition to his skill as a hunter, 
he was possessed of other accomplishments more nearly allied to 
those of civilization, such as chewing and smoking tobacco and 
drinking rum with all the zest of an old tar. The young girls 


could equal him in these matters, having been trained to such evil 
courses by the ungodly whalemen. 

Tlie weather continued very fine through April, leading Captain 
Tvson to remark enthusiastically that there is no climate in the 
world superior to that of the Arctic region during the months of 
April, May, and June. At times the journal becomes quite poeti- 
cal, as the following extracts will show : 

^* April ISth. — The beauty of the surrounding scenery, of the 
glorious sunlight shedding its glittering rays over mountains, val- 
leys, and snow-clad iloes, of the fleecy cumulus clouds floating lazily 
across the deep-blue vaulted arch of heaven, form a picture of mar- 
velous beauty of indescribable splendor." 

^^ April Ufth. — Another perfect day. The sun has a peculiar sil- 
very whiteness, like a burnished mirror, with not a cloud in sight to 
dim its brightness." 

The eyesight of several of the crew soon became affected by 
the brightness of the sun's rays as reflected from the glittering 
snow and ice ; and, as by an unfortunate oversight there were no 
spectacles among the supplies of the Florence, recourse was had to 
the primitive ones used by the natives. These are made of wood 
fitted to the shape of the nose, w^th two slits for the eyes, over each 
of which a small shelf projects. They are fastened to the wearer 
with a thong of sealskin, and, although rude in construction, afford 
grateful protection to the eyes. 

Auroras were frequent during the spring, and some of the dis- 
plays were conspicuously beautiful. On the 14th of April an 
aurora, visible about midnight, was considered especially interest- 
ing by Mr. Sherman, from the fact that it hung over and appa- 
rently emanated from some water-holes to the eastward of the 

The Esquimaux have a peculiar manner of expressing or noting 
distance. Cone-took means a little way only, as a hundred yards 
or a few miles. Conings-ticadle means a distance that would not 
be undertaken without steam or sail, and in fine weather ; while 
weser-pooh means distance so great that no person was ever known 
to accomplish it. 

Mr. Kumlien's labor of procuring seal skeletons was greatly les- 
sened by using those from which the flesh had been eaten by the 
colonists and crew. Each day the meat cart of the vessel was sent 
ashore laden with skulls and other anatomical fragments, for Mr. 
Kumlien to select specimens from. 


By April 23d night had practically disappeared. At midnight 
it was light enough to render large print visible, and a week later 
fine print could be read at the same hour. 

The order of precedence at meals was as rigidly enforced on 
board the Florence as at a Cabinet dinner in the White House. 
The whites came first, and took the best" ; they were followed by 
the male Esquimaux, who took then* choice ; and the squaws, com- 
ing last, took what was left. 

On May 6th Mr. Sherman obtained a fair observation upon the 
transit of Mercury. The weather was foggy, but not sufficiently 
so to obscure the heavens. 

May 10th was rendered noteworthy from its being a rainy day 
— the first observed during the month of May in this r^egion since 
1860. The day was an uncomfortable one for the crew, as the 
water penetrated everywhere on board the vessel. By the latter 
part of May grass in small quantities made its appearance on shore, 
and a few flowers straggled forth on the southern exposures. Flies 
were abundant, and as annoying as in more southern climes. The 
ice began breaking up rapidly, and large water-holes miles in extent 
were visible to the north and west ; but the outlet to the south was 
still blockaded by a barrier of firm ice extending across the gulf 
from shore to shore. Mr. Sherman made daily visits to the land to 
take observations, but did so at the risk of a wet jacket. The na- 
tive men also came off to the vessel regularly for their meals, but 
the women and children would not venture. 

On June 11th the Florence got under way, and moved from her 
winter harbor ; and from this date until the Kickerton Islands were 
reached, July 13th, the little vessel and her crew were exposed to 
all the dangers of Arctic navigation. They were repeatedly com- 
pelled to take shelter behind some protecting island or iceberg 
larger than its fellows, to escape destruction ; and it was only 
by skillful seamanship, under Divine guidance, that they finally 

On one occasion, the 21st of June, the scene from the deck was 
one of the wildest confusion. The Florence was at anchor. The 
ice outside the harbor, under the combined force of the wind and 
ebb tide, was rushing southward with fierce rapidity. The larger 
floes slid over the smaller and weaker ones, crushing and grinding 
them to atoms. The noise of the breaking ice and the wild roaring 
of the wind, with the flying snow, produced a scene not soon to be 
forgotten. During all this time the two scientists were steadily at 


work — sometimes on shore, sometimes on the ice, and again on the 
vessel, but always actively employed. 

Takini; on board fifteen Esquimaux, who volunteered to go 
north with the expedition to remain indefinitely, twenty-eight dogs, 
several sledges, and the necessary household goods of the emigrants, 
the Florence left the Kickerton Islands on July 17th for Disco, and 
reached that port, after a dangerous and stormy passage, on the 
3l8t of the same month. Off Cape Mercy, a large bear, seen on the 
floating ice, was killed. The Esquimaux confined in the hold of 
the vessel had an uncomfortable voyage, and, to secure better 
weather, held an ankoote, which in their opinion produced the 
desired result, as the wind the next day was less boisterous. The 
poor dogs suffered also, but only two of the number died. They 
were landed on one of the outer islands in the harbor, and, being 
fed daily, soon recovered their normal condition. 

At Disco none of the crew were permitted to visit the town 
until the 13th of August, when the Governor returned from a visit 
along the coast and removed the restriction, which was based upon 
erroneous reports received from a Scotch whaler, to the effect that 
an epidemic was raging among the natives on the mainland where 
the Florence wintered. C\i])tain Tyson and the two scientists made 
several visits to the Blue Mountains during this enforced detention, 
and secured several valuable specimens of meteoric ore, which is 
found there in considerable quantities. After intercourse was es- 
tablished with the shore, the Goveraor was exceedingly kind, and 
8up})lied such articles of food, etc., as were needed on the Florence. 

On the *^'Jd of August Captain Tyson gave up all hopes of see- 
ing the main expedition, and, in compliance with his instructions, 
took on board the natives, dogs, and other material collected during 
the winter, and returned with them to the mainland near Niantilic, 
reaching that harbor on the 30th of August. In discharging the 
Esquimaux, they were paid liberally for their services, and given 
such articles of equipment and food as could be spared from the 
vessel. They joined the whites in the feeling of regret at the non- 
arrival of the expedition, and promised to be in readiness to join 
one in the summer of 1879 if called for. 

Leaving Niantilic on the 12th of September, the Florence reached 
St. John's, Newfoundland, on the 2Gth. Here she remained, making 
such repairs as had been rendered necessary by the rough weather, 
until the 12th of October, when she sailed for home, encountering 
a succession of storms, during which anxious friends mourned those 


on board as lost. She touched at Provincetown, Massachusetts, 
October 26th, for supplies, and dropped anchor in New London Har- 
bor on the morning of the 30th, after an absence of fifteen months. 

Her mission was fully accomplished. The practical and scien- 
tific^esults of the A'oyage equal the most sanguine hopes of its pro- 
jectors, and show that Arctic colonization is as practicable as African 
colonization, and can possibly be made as profitable, if profit alone 
is desired. 

It is to be hoped that Congress will take a broad and generous 
view of the subject, and, appreciating in its true spirit the devotion 
of the men who left the comforts of home to winter within the 
Arctic seas, enable them to plant the American flag as far to the 
north as human endurance and human pluck can carry it. 

Henry W. Howgate. 



Trollope's Is lie Popenjoy ? 
James's The Europeans. 

James's Daisy Miller. 
Black's Macleod of Dare. 

Burnett's That Lass o' Lowrie's. 

NovEL-WEiTiNG has become a business, almost a trade. Of 
those who engage in it, nearly all— the exceptions being very rare — 
do 80 merely for the purpose of making money by supplying a de- 
mand. For there has come to be, and indeed there has long been 
in existence in regard to novels, that tirst factor in the equation of 
the political economists, a demand ; this demand being something 
very different from the interest awakened by the appearance of a 
book showing great original power, such for example as " Waver- 
ley," " The Pickwick Papers," " Vanity Fair," " The Scarlet Let- 
ter," " Adam Bede," or " Jane Eyre." There are millions of people 
in Enirhmd, and millions in America, and almost millions in Austra- 
lia, to whose enjoyment of life novels are almost as necessary as 
food is to their life itself, every one of whom asks month by 
month, almost week by week, a new story. They, many of them, 
take some credit to themselves for the time they pass in " read- 
ing" ; complacently contrasting themselves with idlers and those 
who are given up to the frivolities of life. A vain and foolish 
notion ! for there is probably no more insidious form of laziness, no 
method of passing time more absolutely void of exertion of any 
kind, than novel-reading, as novels are read by most of those for 
whom they are written. As a child opens its mouth and has sugar- 
plums i)ut into it, so the ordinary novel-reader sits quietly and 
thoughtlessly, and has a story poured through his eyes into his 
mind, or into what sei'ves him in that capacity. It is in quite 
another spirit and with another purpose that great works of imagi- 
nation are approached by those who can appreciate them. 

To meet this demand for novels, thousands of pens are con- 
stantly employed. The work of most of them never sees the 
light ; but of the number that are set before the public, the general 
reader has probably no just notion. Moderately rating the num- 
ber published yearly in London as three hundred, we may be sure 
VOL. cxxviii. — NO. 266. 7 


that fifty are published in the United States during the same time, 
which makes about one new English novel for every " week-day " 
in the year. Of this mass of fiction nearly the whole passes at 
once into oblivion. And yet not only is the writing of a good 
nof el the great literary achievement of the day, but good novels 
are written more and more frequently year by year ; as, when all 
men were soldiers, to be a valiant soldier and a great captain was 
the highest of all distinctions, and valiant soldiers were common 
and great captains were not rare ; as, when London was full of 
playwrights and new plays were comparatively as common as 
new novels are now, the Elizabethan drama came into life, and 
above the crowd of successful men rose Shakespeare and Ben Jon- 
son, and Beaumont and Fletcher. The great distinction is that 
which is won in the face of many competitors ; and much competi- 
tion exalts the standard of excellence. 

Really good novels are, however, rare enough ; so rare in propor- 
tion to the numbers of the people who read them, that the produc- 
tion of one is not only a sure distinction but a certain source of 
considerable money profit. Since the appearance of " Daniel De- 
ronda " only one good novel, or perhaps it might be said two, have 
been published in England. Of the better of these Anthony Trol- 
lope is the author. His last novel has a name that would have de- 
terred the public from reading it had it been the work of an un- 
known writer. Why he should have given it so ridiculous a title 
as " Is he Popenjoy ? " when " The Dean " or " The Dean's Daugh- 
ter " would have been so much better and so much more appropriate 
and descriptive, it is difficult to divine. The representation of 
character, of which Miss Burney in " Evelina " gave the English- 
reading world, if not the first, at least the most conspicuous and 
successful early example, has gradually become the one great pur- 
pose of the novel-writer. To this Mr. Trollope adds, incidentally 
perhaps, but surely not unconsciously, the portraiture of the so- 
ciety of his day. There is in all literature nothing like the pic- 
ture which is presented in his novels of the social life of Eng- 
land in the middle of the nineteenth century. The truthfulness 
of the picture is confessed by those whom it represents. It is not 
merely vividly imagined, as an untrue thing may be and seem 
real, as for example Carlyle's Robespierre. It is "the form and 
pressure of the time." Even the most intelligent and fastidious 
women in the society which Mr. Trollope's novels represent admit 
that he portrays that society with absolute faithfulness ; they con- 


fess that he makes them act and talk to each other just as they do 
act aud talk in their every-day life ; and this admission they make 
in rep:ard to him alone of all those who have undertaken to rep- 
resent the higher classes of English society, Bulwer-Lytton not 
excepted. This being the case, it is worthy of remark by the way 
that Trollope's social pictures conform so nearly as they do to the 
traits of correspon<ling life in this country. That in the former 
certain men are called lords, or deans, or what not, and that there 
are great houses, and parks, and a tenantry, and fox-hunting, and 
so forth, are incidents for which allowance is to be made, but which 
do not touch the soul or even the substance of the picture. These 
are the mere outside, the accidents of the life that is set before us. 
It remains none the less true that as Mr. Trollope's personages pass 
before us singly or in groups in the familiar intercourse of their 
cver}'-day life, the sense of reality and of intimacy is so strongly 
awakened in us that we have sometimes a sense of shame, as if we 
were watching our friends and neighbors from behind a curtain, or 
listening to them through the crack of a door. No such effect as 
this is produced by the best work of the best novelists of France or 
of Germany. 

In Mr. Trollope's last novel he is, however, less in sympathy 
than usual with his American readers. The great personage of 
the book, the one that gives the story its strength and vitality, 
is Dean Lovelace ; and the conditions of his life and the springs 
of his action are practically so unknown to us that, although 
we can understand them and may sympathize with them, we yet 
constantly feel their foreignness. The Dean of Brotherton is the 
son of a well-to-do livery-stable-keeper. This is his origin. As to 
himself, he is a man of character, of ability, of the highest culture, 
of tine presence, of personal dignity, and of unexceptionable man- 
ners. Moreover, he is a tenderly loving father, and a man whose 
life is sweetened by good nature, and whose passage through the 
world is made easy by humor, that sovereign and subtile lubricant. 
That such a man, even after he had become wealthy and attained 
the position of a dean, should be hampered by his origin, and should 
find it so in the way of his complete and proper recognition, and of 
the happiness of his daughter in the society into which they are 
thrown — that it becomes, next to that daughter's happiness and as 
a means thereto, the chief object of his life to assert himself social- 
ly, and to bring certain persons, people of rank among those about 
him, to a thoroughly respectful consideration of him and his daugh- 


ter — is almost incompreliensible to those who have not been very 
directly under the influence of aristocratic institutions. Be this 
as it may, the man is an admirable creation. He will not suffer 
by comparison with Archdeacon Grantly or with Mrs. Proudie. 
And the difference between him and the Archdeacon is worthy of 
remark ; the distinction is so fine and yet so clear, and it is so plain- 
ly produced, almost if not altogether by their difference of birth 
and early breeding. And yet the difference between them is as 
clearly distinguishable as if they were men of opposite natures and 
circumstances, although the difference — the inner unlikeness in char- 
acter — is produced mainly by self -consciousness. The Archdeacon 
is conscious that, besides being archdeacon, he is a gentleman of 
recognized position. There are other men indeed who may take 
precedence of him, as there are men who may take precedence of a 
duke ; but his position as a gentleman is as clearly acknowledged 
as a duke's, and it is not necessary for him to assert it, or to trouble 
himself at all about it. Dean Lovelace, on the other hand, knowing 
that he has every other advantage of the Archdeacon's but that one, 
feels constantly the lack of the assuredness which it would give 
him ; and in this consciousness on the part of the two men lies 
chiefly the difference between them in their actions, and it may 
almost be said their characters. The Dean of Brotherton, in his 
union of worldly wisdom and a sleepless ambition with perfect 
honor, with kindliness and good-fellowship, and with a capacity of 
tenderest love for his daughter, is one of Mr. Trollope's happiest 
conceptions, and one of those which he has been most perfectly suc- 
cessful in delineating. He has never shown a clearer eye or a steadier 

The other personage in this book who commands most atten- 
tion, and who also removes it from American sympathy, is the 
Marquis of Brotherton, who is a pendant to Thackeray's Marquis 
of Steyne, but a far more detestable character. Steyne's part 
might possibly be played here by a very rich, a very important, and 
a very coarse-minded man ; but a Brotherton in America would be 
impossible. He is not very rich, for a Stewart or a Vanderbilt 
might buy him over and over again ; nor is he a man of much im- 
portance. But he is a marquis, rich, and the head of the family ; 
and, having the position given to him by these circumstances, he is 
able to tyrannize over his mother and sisters, to be brutally inso- 
lent to his bi'other, and to make himself pestilently offensive to the 
world in general, with impunity. The Marquis of Brotherton is a 


personage impossible in America. At the North he would be ex- 
clufled from every decent household ; at the South he would be 
"shot on sight." And yet this marquis is not only possible 
in nature and consistent with himself, but a natural, although an 
extremely rare, product of the society of which he forms a part, 
and from which he yet holds himself as much aloof as possible. 
This Mr. Trollope makes apparent without saying it, and without 
condemning the system of that society ; for he writes as an artist, 
portraying men and women as he sees them, and not as a dissector 
of morbid social anatomy, nor even as a satirist, except when he 
turns his eyes upon anything American. 

From the long-practiced British novelist let us turn to a young 
American, Mr. Henry James, Jr., who, although he is the author of 
several books, including now four novels, is, compared with Mr. 
Trollope, almost a tyro. But, although one of the younger TVTit- 
ers of the day, Mr. James is no timid experimenter, doubtful of 
his powers, ignorant of the field upon which he has entered, and 
uncertain of his aims. We do not know a living writer, except 
Matthew Arnold, who produces upon his readers a greater impres- 
sion of self-knowledge, of self-restraint, or of perpetual self-con- 
sciousness, nor one whose work shows more evidence of fastidious 
taste, cautious i)roceeding, and careful elaboration. Indeed, in his 
mental traits and literary workmanship, Mr. James does not belong 
to the English school (English and American being in literature 
but one), but rather to the French. His cast of thought is French ; 
he has the French nicety of taste, the French reserve of manner, 
dexterity of hand, and fineness of finish ; what wit he has is French, 
and he is French in the paleness and paucity of his humor. He 
seems to have Balzac before him as his model ; and the best thing 
he has yet produced is " Madame de Maulves," a sketch which ap- 
peared in the " Galaxy " magazine, and which Balzac himself need 
not have been ashamed to own. 

Mr. James's latest work in fiction of any importance is " The 
Europeans," which is intended, of course, as a companion piece to 
" The American." The author of " The Europeans " styles it upon 
his title-page a sketch, probably recognizing himself, by that word, 
its absence of plot, and confessing that in writing it he did not 
propose to himself to interest his readers strongly in the fate of his 
personages. And indeed the sayings and doings of these shadowy 
people are not such as to trouble us much as to what becomes of 
them. Their sayings are many and their doings few. The Euro- 


peans are two European-born Americans of very Bohemian type 
and tendency : a youngish woman, Eugenia Young, who as the 
morganatic wife of a German prince has received the title of Bar- 
oness Munster, and her brother, a clever draughtsman, half ama- 
teur, half professional, who is engaged in furnishing sketches to an 
illustrated journal in Europe. To put the matter plainly, the Bar- 
oness Munster is an adventuress, nothing more nor less. As an 
adventuress she became a morganatic wife of the brother of a petty 
German grand duke (it was thirty years ago), and now as an adven- 
turess she comes to America to try her fortune in finding some rich 
American to take her in some fashion — as a wife preferable of 
course — off her German prince's hands. In the first place it is dif- 
ficult to see why these people are called " the Europeans." They 
are in a certain sense indeed the product of the conditions of soci- 
ety upon the continent of Europe, as the Marquis of Brotherton 
and Dean Lovelace are the product of the conditions of society in 
England. But they are not, like the Marquis and the Dean, indige- 
nous products of that society, integral parts of it ; they are waifs 
and strays — Europeanized Americans of a not very admirable sort. 
It was a little fretting to see Mr. Newman set forth as " the 
American " by Mr. James ; that personage being hardly, we think, 
what Mr. James himself would like to have accepted as a fair rep- 
resentative of the social product of his country. But Mr. James's 
Europeans have really no claim whatever to the style and title 
which he bestows upon them ; being simply cosmopolite Bohemians 
of European origin ; folk which the real people of no country would 
acknowledge as being of themselves, not to say take pride in owning. 
These adventurers find their New England kinsfolk living in one 
of the suburbs of Boston, and are kindly received by them and 
placed in a pretty cottage near their own house. There the Baron- 
ess and her brother remain week after week, month after month, 
visiting the big house, doing nothing, suffering nothing, getting 
into no trouble and therefore getting out of none, making no mate- 
rial for a story even of the slightest kind, but revealing their own 
characters and drawing out those of their cousins, young and old. 
These cousins are a father, Mr. Wentworth, and two daughters, 
Charlotte and Gertrude, who seem to be presented as types of New 
England people of their condition. And what character they have, 
it may be acknowledged, is New-England-ish. Their €ommon trait 
seems to be a pale, intellectual asceticism ; but besides this they 
have very little character at all. Their coldly moral view of life is 


admirably described by Mr. James. As he makes Felix say to Ger- 
trude, who is falling in love with him, she and her family " take a 
painful view of life." This is also indicated reflexively by Gertrude, 
who, going from the bare neatness and respectability of New England 
to the Baroness's drawing-room in the little cottage, which the latter 
has decked and softened with curtains and colored drapery (some of 
it rather dingy), looks at it, and then "*What is life, indeed, with- 
out curtains ? ' she secretly asked herself ; and she appeared to her- 
self to have been leading hitherto an existence singulai'ly garish, and 
totally devoid of festoons." These Yankee girls have none of the 
conventional reserves to which Felix has been accustomed ; and the 
effect upon him is thus delicately suggested : " He had known for- 
tunately many virtuous gentlewomen, but it now appeared to him 
that in his relations with them (especially when they were unmar- 
ried) he had been looking at pictures under a glass. lie perceived 
at present what a nuisance the glass had been — how it perverted 
and interfered, how it caught the reflection of other objects and 
kept you walking from side to side." These traits of character and 
others like them, on both sides, are touched by Mr. James with a 
dainty and skillful hand. 

Although ^Ir. James's Wentworths may be recognized as pos- 
sitle New England people, they can not be accepted as fair repre- 
sentatives, mentally or physically, of their class. His description 
of the young ladies personally is puzzling. Gertrude, whose slum- 
bering love for the vanities of the world is aroused by the Baron- 
ess's festoons, and who finally captivates Felix, is described as being 
*' tall and pale, thin and a little awkward ; her hair was fair and 
perfectly straight ; her eyes were dark, and they had the singularity 
of seeming at once dull and restless — differing herein, as you see, 
fatally from the ideal fine eyes, which we always imagine to be both 
brilliant and tranquil." Her sister Charlotte "was also thin and 
pale ; but she was older than the other ; she was shorter, and she- 
had dark smooth hair." And yet these most unattractive young 
ladies are afterward referred to more than once as beautiful. The 
truth seems to be that Mr. James, clever literary artist as he is, is 
not strong in imagination. His personages do not exist, even for 
himself, as living, independent, " self-contained " human beings. 
They act and speak only as he wishes them to act and speak from 
time to time. He has no personal respect for them. How could it 
be otherwise ? How could he treat them with any deference when 
they plainly have no existence for him out of the range of his own 


consciousness ? He calls " The Europeans " a sketch ; and indeed its 
effect is very sketch-like as well as very French. It brings to mind 
some of those very clever things of which so many are done by 
French painters : a mere outline, with a dot or a line suggestive of 
light and shade set here and there, and then filled with color very 
faintly washed in ; the whole thing indicative of the great skill 
that comes from careful training, but nevertheless a very shadowy 
hint of humanity, demonstrative rather of great half-exercised 
powers on the part of the artist than of the solid and vital person- 
ality of the subject. The author seems to be making his sketches, 
just as Felix did his, to send them to his illustrated paper. Hence 
it is, probably, that while they are touched off so cleverly they are 
so unsatisfactory. And yet this lack of individuality and vital 
force in their personages is the great defect of all Mr. James's 
novels. His men and women, although they talk exceedingly well, 
are bloodless, and remind one of the " vox et prseterea nihil " of 
his youth. This shadowy, bloodless effect is not at all the con- 
sequence of the particular type of New England personage de- 
picted in " The Europeans " ; for, besides that it is manifest in the 
peopling of all of Mr. James's novels, let the Went worths, any or 
all of them, be compared with Madame Launay in TroUope's re- 
cent "Lady of Launay," which is a mere sketch no longer than 
Mr. James's own " Daisy Miller." It consists chiefly of a pair of 
every-day lovers, and of an old lady who is ready to sacrifice every- 
thing and everybody, herself included, upon what she regards as 
the altar of duty. The lovers have the virtue of constancy ; the 
old lady, Madame Launa}^, that of inexorable firmness. She is ill, 
she is almost bed-ridden, she becomes a shadow ; but there is more 
strength, more individuality in this attenuated old woman than in a 
regiment of Mr. Wentworths. There is one scene in this little 
sketch in which Philip Launay faces his mother and wins a victory 
over her, partly by his boldness in assaulting her fortress of will, 
and partly by the treachery of love within the walls, in which that 
young man outweighs a ton of such men as are in " The Europeans," 
although one of them, Mr. Brand, is an enormous specimen of mus- 
cular Christianity, and the other is the sinfully positive and joyous 
Felix Young. This is the question in regard to Mr. James's ulti- 
mate success as a novel-writer — whether he will be able to bring 
before us living personages in whose fate we take an interest. As 
to his literary skill there is no question. The impression which 
Felix, always gay, always a little aggressive in his fullness of animal 


spirits, makes upon the shy and shrinking Charlotte, is illustrated — 
we might say ilhiminated — with a little flash of wit \i which the 
most brilliant French writer might be proud : " Poor Charlotte 
could have criven no account of the matter that would not have 
seemed unjust both to herself and to her foreign kinsman ; she 
could only have said — or rather she never would have said it — that 
she di<l not like so much gentlemen's society at once." 

The moral pedantry and the chilly unemotional life characteris- 
tic of a not inconsiderable part of New England society in past gen- 
erations are delicately exposed all through the book. These might 
have dei)re8sed a much less sybaritic person than the Bohemian 
Baroness. As the story, if story it must be called, draws to a close, 
these motives find happy expression in the view taken by Mr. Went- 
worth of the love aff'airs of (iertrude, who was with his approval to 
have been given to Mr. Brand, the big young minister, but who 
with that frentlcnian's consent transfers herself to Felix. When the 
change was made known to him, " Where are our moral grounds ? " 
demanded Mr. Wentworth, who had always thought that Mr. Brand 
would be "just the thing for a younger daughter with a peculiar 
temperament." And soon after, when he is urged to consent to the 
marriage, he again reverts to his cherished view of her case : " * I have 
always thought,' he began slowly, " ' that Gertrude's character re- 
quired a special line of development.' " This brings to mind Mr. 
Ilowells's humorous presentation of the same trait of character in 
his charming *' Lady of the Aroostook," yet incomplete. When the 
Rev. Mr. Goodlow's advice is asked in regard to the unfortunate 
circumstance of Lydia Blood's being the only woman on board that 
vessel, and her making the voyage to " Try-East " in company with 
five men, exclusive of the crew, he replies, " I think Lydia's influence 
upon those around her will be beneficial, whatever her situation in 
life may be." 

But, merely remarking that Mr. James commits an error of fact 
and of time in making people of the position of the Wentworths, 
living in the suburbs of Boston, so ignorant as they are represented 
to be in regard to European social life and art and literature only 
thirty years ago, say 1845, we turn to his " Daisy Miller." This he 
calls a study ; and probably it is, as surely it might have been, a 
study from nature. Daisy Miller is a beauty, and, without being ex- 
actly a fool, is ignorant and devoid of all mental tone or character. 
She dresses elegantly, has " the tournure of a princess," and is yet 
irredeemably vulgar in her talk and her conduct. She shocks all 


Europeans and all well-bred Americans by the terms on which she 
is with the courier of her party, and by making chance acquaintances 
with men and flirting with them. She has a grand affair of this 
kind in Rome, which, after excluding her from the society of more 
reserved American women, ends in her going to see the Coliseum by 
moonlight with her Roman cavalier, who is not a gentleman, and 
taking there the fever of the country and dying. In Daisy Miller 
Mr. James has undertaken to give a characteristic portrait of a cer- 
tain sort of American young woman, who is unfortunately too com- 
mon. She has no breeding, little character, a headstrong will, in 
effect no mother, and with all this has personal attractions and a 
command of money which are very rare in Europe, even among 
people of rank. As she flares through Paris, and flits from place to 
place over the continent, attended but not controlled by her parents, 
she is the wonder and horror of all decorous people, American and 
European. Mr. James's portrait is very faithful. lie has succeeded 
to admiration in the difticult task of representing the manner in 
which such people as Mrs. and Miss Miller talk ; the difficulty being 
caused by the extremely characterless nature of their conversation, 
which is never coarse, or very vulgar, or even very foolish. It is 
simply inane and low-bred, and is marked by certain slight perver- 
sions of language ; for example, *' going around," instead of " going 
about," of which one phrase, by the way, Mr. James makes rather 
too much. It is perhaps well that he has made this study, which 
may have some corrective effect, and which should show European 
critics of American manners and customs the light in which the 
Daisy Millers are regarded by Americans themselves. But the 
probability is that, on the contrary, Daisy Miller will become the 
accepted type and her name the sobriquet in European journalism 
of the American young woman of the period. 

AYilliam Black has returned to the scene of his former success. 
It might be said of him that in his last novel once more his foot is 
on his native heath, and his name is Macleod. The signal failure 
of " Madcap Violet " has evidently startled the author of the ad- 
mirable " Princess of Thule " ; and " Macleod of Dare " is a desper- 
ate effort to renew the Gaelic spell which in that book and in " A 
Daughter of Ileth " he cast upon the public. To a certain degree 
the effort is successful ; but it is not entirely so. Some of the y^qy- 
sonages in " Macleod of Dare " are interesting, and the story will 
certainly command the pleased attention of many readers ; but the 
book has many weak places, and some great faults. It is pervaded 


by the one great fault of constantly apparent effort, of a straining 
after " sensational " effect ; and in its catastrophe this is pushed 
past tlie limit of the endurable. The two principal personages are 
as strongly contrasted as it is possible that two members of civilized 
society at this age of the workl could be. Macleod is noble, gener- 
ous, tender-hearted, unselfish to the verge of human possibility, but 
yet at bottom an untamed Highlander, capable of desperate actions, 
and incapable of submission to the restraints of cultivated, not to 
say of civilized life — almost incapable of their comprehension. It 
was to a certain extent a very clever device to bring such a man in 
contact with a beautiful, soft-mannered, selfish, and utterly heartless 
woman, the product of London life at the present day, like the ac- 
tress Gertrude White. Macleod's noble nature is as open as the 
day. To him deceit, subterfuge of any kind, or a mean motive, is 
absohitely impossi])le. The woman whom he loves at first fatuous- 
ly, and afterward desperately, is as faithless as a cat or a she-fox, and 
is always acting, not only on the stage but at home with her father 
and her sister, who yet see through her ; for she is shallow and 
weak, and the only depths which she fathoms are the little depths 
of meanness. Flattered by the grand passion of such a man as the 
handsome Macleod, borne down perhaps by its strength, and will- 
ing to become the wife of a Scotch baronet and to exchange the 
theatre and her little house in London for Castle Dare, she engages 
herself to him, and he rides upon the crest of happiness. But she 
does not love him ; and a visit to Castle Dare, where his mother 
and a female cousin are, soon gives her a distaste for the harsh 
and simple life that awaits her there, and makes her long for the 
flesh-pots and the flatteries of London. She soon says to her father 
that she shall not be sorry to get away from Castle Dare, and this 
when her lover is quivering in every fibre of his excitable nature 
with delight in ber mere presence ; for she neither makes love to 
him nor suffers him to make love to her. She returns to London, 
and briefly, in social slang phrase, she throws him over, and en- 
gages herself to a distinguished painter — "a w^oman-man," as the 
Highland huntsman, sailor, and swimmer calls him. Macleod, 
whose physical health and joyousness conceal a morbidly sensitive 
nature, has fretted himself ill under her coldness, and when he 
hears of her engagement to the painter he goes mad ; that is, he 
becomes a monomaniac upon the subject of his love. Only on the 
assumption of his monomania can his subsequent conduct be regard- 
ed as any other than savage, fiendish. A faithful Gaelic henchman 


of his, Hamish, whose admirably depicted character is not quite 
new, for it brings to mind another in " A Princess of Thule," hates 
the beautiful, soft-mannered Englishwoman, because of the deplo- 
rable condition into which her indifference has brought the master 
for whom at any time he would give his life ; and he suggests a 
plan to Macleod for carrying off Gertrude — plainly, for abducting 
her and forcing her inclinations. They go to London in Macleod's 
yacht, and the plot succeeds : Gertrude is taken on board the Um- 
pire into the northern seas again. She still refuses Macleod ; and 
he, seeing a tremendous equinoctial storm approaching, sends Ha- 
mish and the rest on shore on a little island, awaits the storm with 
Gertrude, and the yacht goes down with them together. 

This is poor business for the author of " A Daughter of Heth," 
" The Adventures of a Phaeton," and " A Princess of Thule." It 
is artistically no better than the melodrama that wins the applause 
of a cheap theatre. Essentially Macleod's act is no better or other 
than that of the jealous ruffian of the slums who murders his "girl" 
because she " goes with another feller." It is dressed up very skill- 
fully, and by Mr. Black's art is elevated in seeming into an act of 
just retribution, aided by the powers of nature, and accompanied by 
the self-sacrifice of love driven to desperation. But, for all that, it 
is simple revenge, murder, and suicide. Mr. Black, it must be con- 
fessed, carries us through the strain of this catastrophe with a strong 
hand ; but all his art cannot, upon a moment's reflection, conceal 
the base and savage character of IVIacleod's conduct, although we 
may partly excuse him on the assumption that he has become a 
maniac. The development of Gertrude's character is an admirable 
piece of work. The author reveals with great delicacy the utter 
baseness of her smooth and selfish nature ; and, more, he shows us, 
without describing, one of those women, happily rare, who, although 
they may not be without passions, are wholly devoid of sexual ten- 
derness. Gertrude White was incapable of loving either man or 
child — the child that she might herself have borne, or its father. 

Of all recent fiction, the flower and crown is " That Lass o' Low- 
rie's." Its appearance, like that of "Jane Eyre" and "Adam 
Bede," marks the advent of a new writer of original power. What 
the range of that power may be, and what its endurance, is to be 
shown in the future. The conception itself is admirable, and it 
embodies in a most impressive manner a thought, or rather a senti- 
ment, which is not new, but which is widespread and strong, and 
which has never before been born into flesh and blood. The exist- 


ence of such a noble soul and such noble beauty as Joan Lowrie's, 
in a condition of life so low and so coarsening as that of a Lan- 
cashire coal-pit girl, has doubtless occurred to other minds as among 
the possibilities ; but it has been reserved for Mrs. Burnett to show 
us the workings of such a woman's soul, to make us feel the influ- 
ence of such a woman's beauty, to develop her before us by varied 
influences into a thoughtful, gentle woman, to let us see her love for. 
a man so much above her that she deems herself hardly fit to speak 
to him grow into the one absorbing passion of her life, which she 
yet sacrifices in mute agony rather than put him to shame. There 
are other personages in the story, all of which are admirable, even 
down to Nib the terrier. Fergus Derrick is a complete man, and 
so different from the usual woman's model man. Old Sammy Crad- 
dock is a grotesque, yet full of life and nature. Anice Barholm is 
a new woman, and a very winning one ; and her father, the Rev. 
Harold Barholm, in his embodiment of mingled good nature and 
colossal conceit, is one of the most successful figures in the story. 
But before Joan Lowrie they all "pale their ineffectual fires." 
Like a great actress, she comes before us, and at once takes the 
stage ; but it is a shame even to compare anything in her to act- 
ing, to hint that there may be any likeness between her and such a 
creature as Gertrude White. We feel her presence throughout the 
book. From the time when we first see her at the pit's mouth, we 
have an apprehension of her nature, its grandeur and its richness, 
and of the supreme loveliness of her — soul and body. We see, too, 
what her heart's trial is to be, although we do not see how she will 
go through it or what will be its issue. The changes which are 
worked in her — which yet are not changes, but developments — are 
brought about with admirable skill, it might be said with skill intui- 
tive. The development of her womanly tenderness through her care 
of poor Liz's child, the elevation and chastising of her nature by her 
acquaintance with the story of Christ's life and suffering, and the 
quickening of her womanly reserve by the growth of her love and 
the sense of her humiliation, advancing side by side with equal steps 
— these unite to make the portrayal of the character of Joan Lowrie 
one of the finest feats in modern novel-writing. And all this is 
done so quietly, with such a firm hand, with such reserve of power ! 
It is, indeed, very admirable. Some of Mrs. Burnett's earlier stories 
have been published in book form: "Pretty Polly Pemberton," 
" Lindsay's Luck " (which has an American Robert Lindsay, a fine 
fellow, for its hero), "Surly Tim," and others. Although much 


inferior to " That Lass o' Lowrie's," they show in common with it, 
to a certain degree, the power of making living men and women, 
and setting them before us in free natural action. What Mrs. Bur- 
nett may be able to do in writing of greater elaboration than she 
has yet attempted, cannot of course be now even conjectured ; but 
she has already shown that, among all the novel-writers .of the 
present generation, not one has surpassed her in vividness and 
strength of imagination. But, if she were never to write another 
book, we should owe her perpetual thanks for " That Lass o' Low- 
rie's." It is a book of which all women may well be jealous ; for 
no man whose love is worth having can read it and lay it down not 
more than half in love with his ideal of Joan Lowrie. 

Richard Grant White. 


VEtat dc Cdlifornie, liccueil de Faits observes en 1877-1S78, sur VEduca- 
tion puhlique, la Presse^ le Mouvement intellcctuel, les Moeurs, le Gouverne- 
ment^ le Climat^ les ReuoxLrcc%. Par M. LfeoN Donnat. Paris : Librairie Ch. 
Dclagrave. IGino, pp. 325. 

Canada under the Administration of the Earl of Dufferin. By George 
Stewaut, Jr. Toronto, Canada: Kose-Helford Publishing Co. 8vo, pp. G96. 

The Great Slighted Fortune. By J. D. Bell. New York : T. Y. Crowell. 
12mo, pp. 452. 

The Life of Samuel Johnson^ LL. D.^ including the Tour to the Hehrides. 
By James Boswell. New York: Henry Holt & Co. 12mo, pp. 689. 

The Studio Arts. By Euzabetii AVintiirop Jounson. New York : Henry 
Holt & Co. 24mo, pp. IGl. 

Astronomy, \^y K. S. Ball, LL. D., F. R. S. Specially revised for 
America by Simon Newcomb, LL. D. 24nio, pp. 154. 

An Essay on Free Trade. By Richard Hawley. New York : G. P. Put- 
nam's Sons. IGmo, pp. G3. 

Apple- Blossoms: Voices of Tico Children. Elaine Goodale, Dora Read 
GooDALE. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. IGmo, pp. 253. 

The Leavenworth Case: A L>aityer^8 Story. By Anna Katharine Green. 
New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. IGmo, pp. 475. 

Select Poems. By Harvey Rice. Boston: Lee& Slicpard. IGmo, pp. 174. 

A Commentary on the Holy Scriptures : Critical^ Doctrinal^ and Homileti- 
cal, with Special Reference to Ministers and Students. By John Peter Lange, 
D. D. Translated from the German, and edited, with Additions, Original 
and Selected, by Philip Sciiaff, D. D. Vol. XL, of the Old Testament, con- 
taining the Prophet Isaiah. New York : Charles Scribner's Sons. Svo, 
pp. 741. 

Discussions in Church Polity. By Charles Hodge, D. D. New York: 
Charles Scribner's Sons. Svo, pp. 532. 

Memoirs of the Long Island Historical Society. Vol. III. The Campaign 
of 1776 around New York and Brooklyn. Brooklyn, N. Y. : published by the 
Society. Svo, pp. 209. 

Roderick Hume : The Story of a ISfew YorTc Teacher. By 0. W. Bardeen. 
Syracuse, N. Y. : Davis, Bardeen & Co. 24mo, pp. 295. 

The Training of Children. By Florence Bayard Lockwood. Philadel- 
phia: Edward Stern & Co. IGmo, pp. 41. 

Le Christ : Sept Discours. Par Ernest Naville. Geneva : A. Cherbu- 
liez et Cie. Svo, pp. 256. 


Meg : A Pastoral and Otlier Poems. By Zadel Baenes Gustafson. Bos- 
ton: Lee & Shepard. 16mo, pp. 280. 

Change: The Whisper of the Sphinx. By William Leiguton. Phila- 
delphia: J. B. Lippincott & Co. 12mo, pp. 143. 

Cupid and the Sphinx. By Harfoed Flemming. New York: G. P. 
Putnam's Sons. 8vo, pp. 179. 

The Old House Altered. By George C. Mason. New York: G. P. Put- 
nam's Sons. 16mo, pp. 434. 

Investigation of Electoral Frauds. A Letter from Claekson N. Pot- 
ter. New York : Russell Brothers. 8vo, pp. 23. 

American Decisions^ containing all the Cases of General Value and Author- 
ity decided in the Courts of the Several States, from the Earliest Issue of the 
State Reports to the Year 1869. Compiled and annotated by John Proffatt, 
LL. B. Vol. V. San Francisco : A. L. Bancroft & Co. 8vo, pp. 777. 

English Literature. By T. Arnold. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 
24mo, pp. 185. 

Jean TeteroVs Idea. From the French of Victor Ciierbuliez. New 
York: D. Appleton & Co. 16mo, pp. 819. 

Medea : A Tragedy. By Grillparzer. Translated by F. W. Thurston, 
B. A., and Sidney A. Wittmann. London: James Nisbet & Co. lOmo, 
pp. 122. 

Socialism. By Roswell D. Hitchcock, D. D. New York : Anson D. 
F. Randolph & Co. 12mo, pp. 111. 

The Dinner Year- Boole. By Marion Haeland. New York : Charles 
Scribner's Sons. 12mo, pp. 713. 

The Blessed Bees. By John Allen. New York : G. P. Putnam's Sons. 
16mo, pp. 1G9. 

The Art of Floicer- Painting. By Mrs. William Duffield. Edited by 
Susan N. Carter. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 16mo, pp. 46. 

A Face Illumined. By E. P. Roe. New York : Dodd, Mead & Co. 
12mo, pp. 658. 

The Reign of God not " the Reign of Law : ' A New Way {and yet very 
old) to decide the Debate between " Science " and Religious Faith. By Thomas 
Scott Bacon. Baltimore: Turnbull Brothers, 16mo, pp. 400. 

The Germ. Theories of Infectious Diseases. By John Drysdale, M. D. 
London: Bailliere, Tindall & Cox. 12mo, pp. 74. 

Pretty Polly Pemberton. By Frances Hodgson Burnett. New York : 
Charles Scribner's Sons. 24ino, pj). 213. 

Lindsaifs Luck. By Frances Hodgson Burnett. New York : Charles 
Scribner's Sons. 24mo, pp. 154. 

Kathleen Mavoitrneen. By Frances Hodgson Burnett. New York: 
Charles Scribner's Sons. 24mo, pp. 216. 

The Normans in Europe. By the Rev. A. H. Johnson, M. A. New 
York: Charles Scribner's Sons. 16mo, pp. 273. 




February, 1879. 

No. 267. 

Troi Tyriusque raihi nullo discrimine agetur. 


549 & 561 BROADWAY. 





FEBRUARY, 1879. 

AXT. Paob 

I. The Conduct of Business in Congress. By G. F. 

Hoar, U. S. Senator from Massachusetts . .113 

n. The Mysteries of American Railroad Account- 
ing. By an Accountant .... 135 

m. A Statesman of the Colonial Era. By General 

Richard Taylor ..... 148 

rV. Reconstruction and the Negro. By D. H. Cham- 
berlain ...... 161 

V. The Empire of the Discontented. By a Russian 

Nihilist ...... 174 

VI. The Scientific Work of the Howgate Expedi- 
tion. By O. T. Sherman, Meteorologist in charge. 191 

Vn. Sensationalism in the Pulpit. By William M. 

Taylor, D. D. . . . . .201 

VIII. Medieval French Literature : Histoire de la Lan- 
gue et de la Litterature Fran9aise au Moyen Age ; 
•Les Epopt'es Fran9aises ; Le Drame Chretien au 
Moyen Age ; Les Prophetes du Christ ; Guillaume 
de Palerne ; Les Sept Sages de Rome ; Miracles de 
Nostre Dame ; Aiol. By Professor T. F. Crane, 
Cornell University .... 212 

Publications Received . . • . 221 

The Editor disclaims responsibility for the opinions 
of contributors, wbetlier their articles are signed or 






There are few subjects of equal public interest concerning which 
80 much misuntlerstanding prevails among well-informed people as 
the course of business in the national House of Representatives. 
Most persons think that their re})rcsentative can at any time, if he 
choose, rise in his place and demand the attention of the House to 
a speech on any subject which may interest him or his constituents, 
and compel the body to record its opinion on any bill or resolution 
he sees fit to introduce. Tliis is far from being true. The House 
of Representatives is governed by a complicated and artificial sys- 
tem of rules, so difficult to be understood that many able men of 
great national fame go through long terms of service without pro- 
fessing to comprehend it. It is not my purpose to write a treatise 
on this complex aiTangement. I wish only to call attention to the 
operation of a few parts of the mechanism which seem to me to re- 
quire alteration, and to show how they tend to diminish the author- 
ity, weight, and dignity of the House, and how they have deprived 
that illustrious body of the equality with the Senate which the 
framers of the Constitution contemplated. 

The representatives of the large States in the Convention of 
1787 contended earnestly for the apportionment of representation 
among the States in both branches according to numbers. The rep- 
resentatives of the small States demanded equality of representa- 
tion in the Senate. This difference seemed for a long time inca- 
voL. cxxviii. — NO. 267. • 8 


pable of adjustment, and nearly caused the Convention to break up 
without accomplishing its purpose. The difficulty was compro- 
mised by the appointment of a committee of one from each State, 
whose report was adopted with some modification. The large 
States yielded the equality of representation in the Senate, but de- 
manded and secured for the House the sole power of originating 
bills for raising revenue. The clause as reported was as follows : 

All bills for raising or appropriating money, and for fixing the salaries of 
the officers of the Government of the United States, shall originate in thp 
first branch of the Legislature, and shall not be altered or amended by the 
second branch; and no money shall be drawn from the public treasury but 
in pursuance of appropriations to be originated in the first branch. 

In the second branch, each State shall have an equal vote. 

The clause as to revenue bills was adopted in this form : 

All bills for raising revenue shall originate in the House of Representa- 
tives ; but the Senate may propose or concur with amendments, as on other 

It will be observed that, while the Convention voted to confine 
the power of originating bills for raising revenue to the House, it 
with equal distinctness voted not to extend this prohibition to bills 
for appropriating money. The system so established differs from 
the Constitution of England in three essential particulars : In Eng- 
land, no appropriation for a public purpose can be introduced in the 
House of Commons without a previous request from the Crown ; 
no money bill can be amended by the Lords ; and the exclusive 
prerogative of the Commons extends to all bills for raising or ap- 
propriating money. So jealous are the Commons of this preroga- 
tive, that the Lords rarely attempt to make any but verbal altera- 
tions in money bills, in which the sense or intention is not affected ; 
and, when the Commons accept these, they make special entries on 
their journals recording the character and object of the amend- 
ments, and their reasons for agreeing to them. 

There is no historical evidence that anybody in the Convention 
gave much consideration to the effect of these changes from the 
English system upon the value of the prerogative. The better 
opinion was, that the importance of the privilege, as asserted by 
the English Commons, was very much exaggerated, and that Ameri- 
can experience in those States whose constitutions contained a like 
provision had shown that it was without advantage, and was a fruit- 
ful source of wrangling between the two Houses. Mr. Madison 


said : " I confess I see nothing of concession in it. The origina- 
ting money bills is no concession on the part of the smaller States, 
for, if seven States in the second branch should want such a bill, 
their interest in the first branch will prevail to bring it forward. It 
is nothing more than a nominal privilege." 

This is one of the few subjects upon which General Washing- 
ton's vote is recorded : "He disapproved, and till now voted 
against, the exclusive privilege. He gave up his judgment," he 
said, " because it was not of very material weight with him, and 
was made an essential point with others, who, if disappointed, might 
be less content in other points of real weight." 

Similar views were expressed by many of the most eminent 
members. Three of the larger States, to whom this privilege was 
offered as a concession, by way of equivalent for the equality of 
the small States in the Senate, voted against it as an independent 
proposition. ^Ir. Ilallam, in his " Constitutional History," expresses 
a similar opinion as to the exaggeration by the House of Commons 
of the importance of their exclusive privilege. If this view was 
sound when the scheme was to deny all power of amendment to the 
Senate, it has infinitely greater weight after the power of amend- 
ment has been yielded. The pocket of the Englishman is protected 
against lavish exj)en(liture by the fact that no sixpence of his money 
can be granted for a public purpose that has not first been asked 
for by the Crown, on the advice of a responsible and accountable 
minister, and because none of his possessions can be made the sub- 
ject of tax, excise, or duty, unless the proposal come from his own 
representative. The assent of the sovereign and the Lords is only 
needed to give the force of law to what is the gift of the free will 
of the Commons. 

To the system established by our Constitution, widely departing 
as it did from the methods by which the unwritten constitutional 
law of England keeps the power of the purse in the hands of her 
Majesty's faithful Commons, two important additions have been 
made by construction. It should be stated that, whenever a ques- 
tion has arisen between the two branches in regard to the construc- 
tion of this clause in the Constitution, the House of Representa- 
tives has invariably had its OAvn way. It was said by Mr. Web- 
ster, in the Senate, in 1833 : " The constitutional question must be 
regarded as important, but it was one which could not be settled 
by the Senate. It was purely a question of privilege, and the de- 
cision of it belonged alone to the House." 


1. By a practice as old as the Government itself, the constitutional 
prerogative of the House has been held to apply to all the general 
appropriation bills. 

2. The power of amendment, as on other bills, has not been 
held, as between the two Houses, to be limited to the subjects em- 
braced in the bill as sent from the House, or to perfecting its spe- 
cial arrangements. Each House has a rule, which seldom is an 
obstacle to the accomplishment of anything which a majority of its 
members desire, declaring that no proposition on a subject different 
from that under consideration shall be admitted under color of 
amendment. It seems impossible to doubt that the amendments 
contemplated by the framers of the Constitution were amendments 
touching the particular subject matter to which the clauses received 
from the House relate. The House of Commons, so strict to assert 
its prerogative against the Lords, admits the right of the Lords to 
amend, by admitting altogether provisions which are not germane 
to the other provisions of the bill (189 Hansard, third series, 411). 

The rules of our House are so construed that, on the great appro- 
priation bills, any amendment designed to carry into effect existing 
law, or provide for administering any department of the Govern- 
ment, is held admissible ; and they are never invoked by the House 
against the Senate. 

If this were all — if the House and Senate were two bodies of 
equal numbers, acting under the same rules, and made up substan- 
tially of men of the same sort — it is difficult to perceive the slight- 
est advantage that the House or the people could derive from this 
prerogative, so far as it relates to the appropriation of public money. 
The eleven general appropriation bills, and one or more deficiency 
bills, are reported annually. The former are required by a rule of 
the House to be reported from the Committee on Appropriations 
within thirty days after its appointment. This rule is seldom 
obeyed. These bills contain, on an average, appropriations to the 
amount of more than two hundred millions, to which the Senate 
commonly adds many millions more. These Senate amendments 
embrace every variety of expenditure for the public service, and 
every variety of new legislation ; the discretion of the upper branch 
being, in this particular, as absolutely unaffected by this constitu- 
tional barrier as if it had no existence whatever. The wishes of the 
Senate, in case of difference of opinion in regard to a proposition 
which the Senate originates, are much more likely to prevail when 
that proposition is added to a measure the House has agreed to, 


than if the same measure should originate as a separate bill in the 
Senate, and be sent to the House by itself for consideration on its 
own merits. 

The surrender of the power of amendment, then, as it has in- 
variably been construed, was the surrender of the whole privilege. 
It has not only destroyed the advantage intended to be secured 
for the immediate representatives of the people, but has given the 
Senate a considerable preponderance of influence in legislation. It 
has enabled the Senate to exert the power of tacking clauses to bills 
of supply, and thereby to extort the consent of the House. This 
power has been always «lenied in Parliament, even to the Commons 
as against the Lords. On December 9, 1702, it was ordered and 
declared by the Lords, " that the annexing any clause or clauses 
to a bill of aid or supply, the matter of which is foreign to or dif- 
ferent from the matter of the said bill of aid or supply, is unparlia- 
mentary, and tends to the destruction of the Constitution of this 
Government" (see Sir Thomas Erskine May's "Parliamentary 
f*ractice," seventh edition, pages 581-583). 

Hut the destruction of the rightful power of the House over 
the great a]>pro])riati<)n bills which regulate and supply the Gov- 
ernment in all its ordinary administrative functions, and which con- 
tain a very large portion of its general legislation, is rendered more 
complete by the method of doing business to which the House has 
confined itself by its own rules. All appropriation bills which are 
first reported in the House must, by their rules, be first discussed in 
Committee of the Whole. No bill can be reported from this com- 
mittee to the House until every member has had an opportunity to 
move as many amendments as he chooses. Debate cannot be stopped 
by the previous question. The House before going into committee 
may, it is true, order debate to close on any particular section or on 
the whole bill at a fixed time. Yet this does not prevent amend- 
ments, and is rarely resorted to until debate has strayed from the 
particular subject of the bill into general political discussion. So 
far, therefore, as the consideration of the appropriation bills as 
originally reported is concerned, the usages of the House preserve 
for itself the character of a deliberative assembly, and for each of 
its members the privilege of expressing his opinion in debate, and 
of bringing to a vote whatever measure he may desire. But these 
bills then go to the Senate. They are there examined by the appro- 
priate committee, and reported to the Senate, where days are spent 
in their consideration, with unlimited opportunity for debate and 


amendment. Not only is the original bill remodeled, reviewed, re- 
vised, at the pleasure of the Senate, but hundreds of entirely new 
provisions are added at the pleasure of the upper branch. The 
measure which came from the House, the prerogative of originating 
which is specially secured by the Constitution and guarded by the 
House with such jealous care, has precisely the same position and 
weight, neither more nor less, as any proposition moved by a single 
member of the Senate. 

When the bill goes back to the House, containing the Senate 
amendments, the session is usually far advanced. In the year of 
the short session the constitutional limit of the life of the House is 
approaching. In the alternate years, when the session extends into 
summer, the scorching heats render men eager to leave Washington, 
and the two branches have usually fixed the time of adjournment 
by concurrent vote. There is no time for examination, debate, or 
reference to Committee of the Whole. The House non-concurs in 
the Senate amendments in the lump, w^ithout hearing them read. 
The Senate insists. A conference is asked and granted. Confer- 
ence committees are appointed, consisting of three members from 
each branch, usually the chairman of the Committee on Appropria- 
tions, with that member of the committee most conversant with the 
subject of the bill, and one member of the minority. These com- 
mittees confer and agree upon a report compromising and com- 
pounding all matters of difference between the two Houses as they 
may be able. Their report is matter of the highest privilege. It 
may be made at any time, no matter in what business the House be 
engaged. A member who is speaking may be taken off his feet by 
its superior claim to attention. No motion to lay it on the table, 
to indefinitely postpone, or to amend it is in order. The House or 
Senate must accept it as a whole or reject it as a whole. If it be 
rejected, a new conference may be ordered, but the result of a con- 
ference must sooner or later be accepted in a mass, or the whole bill 
be lost. The House is all this time under a sort of duress. If it 
suffer the appropriation bill to fail, the Government must stop, or 
an extra session be held at midsummer, with its cost and discom- 
fort. Every other year the House votes on the appropriation bill 
with the knowledge that if it do not agree to amendments on which 
the Senate insists, and the bill fail, its power over the subject must 
be lost altogether by the arrival of the 4th of March, when its life 
expires, and the new bill must be dealt with by its successors. 

Degrading as this system is to the House as a body, its effect on 


the individual member is still more remarkable. The whole power 
of legislation over that vast field which is covered by the Senate's 
amendments to the groat appropriation bills is in practice delegated 
to two of the three members who are appointed on the conference 
committee. No other member gets a chance to discuss them, to 
vote separately on any one of them, to make any motion in relation 
to them, or even to see in print what the* committee recommend in 
regard to thentL "Gape, sinner, and swallow." 

If the reader has followed this somewhat technical statement, 
he has observed that while the power of amendment reserved in our 
Constitution, as it is expounded in practice, allows to the Senate 
and to each of its members the fullest opportunity to deal with ap- 
propriation and revenue bills as freely as with bills relating to any 
other subject, the rules and usages of the House leave that body 
with much less practical power of deliberation or amendment in 
regard to all those provisions which have their origin in the Senate 
than the House of Lords has in relation to money bills under the 
English system. 

Suppose, now, all this were reversed. Suppose the Constitution 
were to provide that all money bills should originate in the Senate, 
permitting the House to amend, as in the case of other bills. The 
House would then, on the arrival of the bill, commit it to the Com- 
mittee of the Whole, where every clause proposed by the Senate 
and every amendment proposed in the House would be fully dis- 
cussed, with unlimited power to propose changes, every individual 
member having the fullest opportunity to express his opinion or 
offer his plan ; and the conference committee of both branches 
would receive the bill fully possessed of the views of their respec- 
tive Houses as to every syllable which had been proposed by either. 
When, therefore, the large States accepted the clause in question 
as a partial equivalent for the equality of the small States in the 
Senate, they accepted a further limitation of their own power. 
When the House, in 1832, refused to permit Mr. Clay's compromise 
bill to have its origin in the Senate ; when, in 1856, it refused to 
permit the Senate to originate some of the general appropriation 
bills ; and when, in 1870, it refused to permit* the Senate to add a 
revision of the whole tariff to a bill abolishing the duties on tea and 
coffee, its victory was an abdication of its equality in legislation 
with the Senate, and tended to deprive every one of its members of 
his right to debate or amendment in regard to a large part of the 
most important legislation of the country. 


I have been speaking of the course of the ordinary business of 
Congress. Upon the great questions which move the heart of the 
nation and divide political parties, the body of the House and its 
leaders are commonly in full accord, and the representatives of the 
American people know how to make their power felt and assume 
their rightful and constitutional place in legislation. But even 
here it is not enough that the House preserves its power. The 
power to do what it will, and to refuse consent to what it will not, 
will not preserve its own dignity or its value as an important factor 
in legislation, unless its will is the result of its best judgment ; in 
other words, unless it preserve its function as a deliberative assem- 
bly. The difficulty is not that on great occasions and great ques- 
tions the voice of the House is stifled. On such occasions the House 
and its leaders are in accord with each other, and commonly in 
accord with a public sentiment which the Senate will not lightly 
resist. But the practice I have been exposing tends largely to take 
from the House the character of a deliberative assembly. The 
barren and empty privilege of originating bills of revenue and bills 
of supply it has purchased at the sacrifice of that essential preroga- 
tive — essential to its own dignity and to that of every individual 
among its members — its freedom of debate. 

Let us pass now from the subject of money bills to a glance at 
the methods of general legislation. The morning hour of every 
Monday is devoted by the House to a call of all the States and 
Territories for the introduction of bills and joint resolutions. The 
House commonly takes care that every member has full opportunity 
to introduce as many bills as he desires. These bills are usually 
printed. The rule is peremptory that they shall be at once referred 
to their appropriate committees without debate and without the 
right to move to reconsider the vote of reference. Several thou- 
sand bills are introduced in this way in every Congress. Worthy 
citizens interested in special reforms are much gratified to read that 
their member has introduced some excellent and radical measures 
of reform. The bills themselves are copied by approving news- 
papers, and redound greatly to the credit of their enterprising au- 
thors. For all practical purposes, they might as well be published 
in a newspaper in New Zealand or Alaska. The processes by which 
these bills are strangled will be understood by comprehending the 
operation of the committees and the effect of the previous question. 

The House has forty-seven permanent committees, and usually 
half a dozen special committees on important subjects. Appropri- 


ation bills, revenue bills, contested-election cases, and resolutions 
authorizing the necessary public printing may be reported at any 
time. All other national legislation can only, under the rules, be 
reported from the appropriate committee when it is called by the 
Speaker for reports in its turn. For this call, an hour after the 
reading of the Journal, on every day except Monday and Friday, 
is set apart. Each committee is entitled, when it is called, to oc- 
cupy this morning hour of each of two successive days with the 
measures which it has prepared, and, if its second morning hour 
expire while the House is actually considering one of its measures, 
to have that single measure hold over in the morning hour till it is 
disposed of. Supposing the two sessions which make up the life of 
the House to last ten months, and allowing for the holidays, the 
time taken for organization and appointing committees, and the 
time when the four privileged subjects above named take up the 
attention of the House, so that theanorning hour can not be devoted 
to this call, I suppose one hundred days in two sessions is an un- 
usually large average of days when such a call is had. This gives 
an average of not more than two hours apiece to the committees of 
the House to rei)ort upon, debate, and dispose of all the subjects 
of general legislation committed to their charge. From this time 
is taken the time consumed in reading the bill, and in calling the 
yeas and nays, which may be ordered by one fifth of the members 
present, and which requires forty minutes for a single roll-call. 
The members of the committees, of course, take special interest in 
the subjects assigned to them, which they have investigated and 
reporti-'d, and which they have prepared themselves to discuss. It 
will readily be believed, therefore, that the House is inclined to 
shorten rather than to lengthen the time given to any one matter — 
each member eager that the committee holding the floor shall give 
way as soon as possible, that the call may go on and his own com- 
mittee's turn come the sooner. The committee holding the floor, 
if it have several measures matured, desires to hurry each along as 
fast as possible, that it may dispose of the others. After the bill 
is reported, the member reporting it is entitled to the floor for an 
hour. If the previous question is ordered, he has a further hour to 
sum up. No amendment can be offered till the member's first hour 
is over, and none after the previous question is ordered. The re- 
sult is, that the floor is held by the member who made the report, 
and parceled out by yielding portions of his time to persons who 
desire to speak for or against the measure. The sense of fair play 


in the House usually secures an equal division of the time allowed 
for debate between friends and foes. But the person who reports 
the bill dictates how long the debate shall last, who shall speak on 
each side, and whether any and what amendments shall be offered. 
Any member fit to be intrusted with the charge of an important 
measure would be deemed guilty of an inexcusable blunder if he 
surrendered the floor, which the usages of the House assign to his 
control for an hour, without demanding the previous question. The 
House in rare instances refuses to grant the demand, but this is at 
the hazard of prolonging debate indefinitely, which, for the reason 
above stated, is usually the last thing which any considerable num- 
ber of members desire. Another expedient is more frequent. A 
minority who wish to secure a chance to debate or amend a special- 
ly obnoxious bill sometimes bring the majority to terms by what 
is called filibustering, that is, consuming time by repeated motions 
to adjourn, on which the yeas a^id nays are called, so that no prog- 
ress is made in business until the majority grant time for debate or 
agree to test the sense of the House by permitting an amendment 
to be moved. These difficulties, which stand in the way of the 
introduction of bills in the regular mode under the rules, and beset 
them after they are introduced, have led to another device by 
^ means of which a large proportion, perhaps a majority, of all the 
bills which pass the House are carried through. Every Monday 
after the morning hour, and at any time during the last ten days 
of the session, motions to suspend the rules are in order. At these 
times any member may move to suspend the rules and pass any 
proposed bill. It requires two thirds of the members voting to 
adopt such motion. Upon it no debate or amendment is in order. 
In this way, if two thirds of the body agree, a bill is by a single 
vote, without discussion and without change, passed through all the 
necessary stages, and made law so far as the consent of the House 
can accomplish it ; and in this mode hundreds of measures of vital 
importance receive, near the close of exhausting sessions, without 
being debated, amended, printed, or understood, the constitutional 
assent of the representatives of the American people. 

In administering this system, the general outline of which I 
have given, many subtile and artificial constructions and distinc- 
tions have been established, which it is not necessary to deal with 
here. I have failed to make myself understood if the reader has 
not seen how completely, by its own rules, the House has deprived 
itself of '' that freedom of deliberation, speech, and debate " which 


our early American constitutions declare to be " essential to the rights 
of the people." This result has been brought about by what is called 
" the previous question " — a guillotine which is in constant operation. 

The previous question in England is used to postpone or defeat 
a question which for any reason it is not desirable to bring to a 
direct vote ; never to force through a measure without debate. In 
early times the form of the previous question was, " Shall the pre- 
vious question be put ? " If this were decided in the negative, the 
question was indefinitely postponed ; if in the affirmative, the ques- 
tion was at once put. In 1004, at the suggestion, it is said, of Sir 
Henry Vane, the present form, " Shall the main question be now 
put ? " was substituted. Under this, if the vote be in the negative, 
the question goes over to the next legislative day ; if in the affirm- 
ative, the question is at once put. If the previous question, as 
under our rules, were to be at once put without debate, it is obvious 
that the English system would put it in the power of a single mem- 
ber to stop debate, against the wish of the rest of the body, by 
making a motion which, if decided one way, causes the main ques- 
tion to be at once put, and, if decided the other, removes it alto- 
gether from before the House. But in England debate goes on 
after the previous question is moved as before, and the previous 
question is not voted upon till debate is exhausted. " Hence," Mr. 
Cashing says, " it happens that when the previous question is moved 
and seconded, the adversaries of the measure, instead of being con- 
fined in the debate to its merits, as would otherwise be the case, 
have the advantage of all objections which can be urged against 
the proposition itself, against the time when it is brought forward, 
and against the fonn in which it is moved ; and this is an advan- 
tage of which they can not be deprived, so long as a single member 
objects to the withdrawal of the previous question." 

The previous question thus restricted has never come into com- 
mon use in Parliament. Sheridan, in a memorable debate, speaks 
of "the shabby shelter of the previous question." It never is 
applied in Committee of the Whole. It was never applied in the 
second reading of a bill until 1858, and it has probably not been 
resorted to a dozen times since. 

The Senate, on its first organization in 1789, adopted by its rules 
the previous question as used in the House of Commons. On the 
17th of March, 1806, it established a new code of rules in which no 
mention is made of the previous question ; but the eighth rule was 
as follows : 


While a question is before the Senate, no motion shall be received, un- 
less for an amendment, for postponing the question, or to commit it, or to 
adjourn ; and the motion for adjournment shall always be in order, and shall 
be decided without debate. 

By this rule the Senate abolished the previous question altogether. 
For seventy-tAYO years there has been no restraint in that body upon 
the liberty of debate and the power of amendment. Mr. Foot of 
Connecticut proposed, on the 23d of January, 1832, that the ques- 
tion of consideration should be decided without debate. This was 
denounced by Mr. Benton as an invasion of the liberty of speech, 
and was not pressed. 

In 1841, after twelve years of Democratic rule, the "Whigs took 
possession of the Government, with a majority of nearly fifty in the 
House and of seven in the Senate. On the 6th day of July, at the 
extra session, the rules of the House were amended by adding that 
the Hou^e might, " by a majority vote, provide for the discharge 
of the Committee " (of the Whole) " from the consideration of any 
bill referred to them, after acting without debate upon all amend- 
ments pending and that may be offered." This was carried by a 
vote of 117 to 95, after a considerable struggle. John Quincy 
Adams speaks of it in his diary as " a new screw." Mr. Medill, 
afterward Governor of Ohio, denounced the new rule in language 
which would seem both impressive and prophetic, if we did not find 
like epithets so constantly in the mouths of Democratic speakers on 
all occasions great and small : 

What is the tendency and operation of this monstrous proposition ? It is 
to enable the majority to apply the gag in Committee of the Whole as well 
as in the House, and thus cut off debate on any subject whatever. This is a 
proposition that I venture to say was never before made in any legislative 
body, and even in the British Parliament would subject its mover to the most 
indignant rebuke. In the Committee of the Whole the utmost latitude of 
debate has ever been indulged, and there the minority have a right to be 
heard without any other restraint than is imposed on all. In the British 
Parliament, as well as in the legislative bodies of this country, all bills rais- 
ing supplies or levying taxes must be committed here, that the discussion 
may be free, and unrestrained by the majority, which is most frequently with 
the Executive. 

But adopt the proposition of the gentleman from Massachusetts (Mr. Cal- 
houn), and you can cut off all debate, not only in the House but the Committee 
of the Whole, whenever a drilled majority shall so determine. Thus appro- 
priations may be made and our constituents taxed to maintain the expenses 
of our extravagance of government; and, standing here in the minority, 


though representing a largo and intelligent constituency, our mouths may be 
absolutely closed, and abusea of every kind may be practiced without the 
possibility of exposure. 

Immediately after the declaration of the vote, Mr. Lott Warren 
of Georgia, with a view, as he said, "to carry out the reform which 
had been begun," announced his puqDOse to offer as an amendment 
to the twenty-eighth rule : " And that no member be allowed to 
speak more than one hour to any question under debate." This 
was ad(>j)ted on the following day, June 7th ; yeas 111, nays 75. 
Mr. Adams records in his diary : " I voted against the resolution, 
but hope it will effect much good." On the 8th of June, the 
House being in committee on the loan bill, while !Mr. Pickens was 
speaking in opposition, the Chair reminded him that his hour 
was out. Mr. Pickens denied that the House had any constitutional 
right to pass such a rule. The Chair again reminded Mr. Pickens 
that he had spoken an hour. Mr. Pickens would then conclude by 
saying that it was the most infamous rule ever passed by any legis- 
lative body. 

With this ineffective remonstrance the minority of the House 
submitted to the inauguration of the practice, which has ever since 
prevailed with constantly increasing strictness. I suppose the large 
majority of measures which pass the House of Representatives are 
passed on motion to suspend the rules and adopt the bill, on which 
motion neither debate nor amendment is permitted, or under the 
previous question, moved by the member who introduces the mea- 
sure at the time of its introduction, either wholly w^ithout discussion 
or amendment, or with only so much of either as the mover, in his 
discretion, sees fit to allow. 

These resolutions, which have had so great effect on the char- 
acter of the House, are attributed by Mr. Benton to Mr. Clay. Mr. 
Clay was the leader of the Whig party in Congress. His lordly 
and imperious nature chafed under the incessant and vigorous at- 
tacks of his Democratic antagonists on the one hand, and the refusal 
of the Executive branch of the Government to submit to his dicta- 
tion on the other. He was impatient to carry through the measures 
for which the extra session had been called. The Whigs had taken 
possession of the Government after the sweeping political revolu- 
tion of 1840, eager to reverse the policy which had prevailed for 
twelve years, and, with a brief interval, since the accession of Jeffer- 
son in 1801. In regard to every one of the great subjects of legis- 
lation, the Whigs attempted to exercise national powers which had 


never been used or had long lain dormant. The Democrats en- 
countered every measure with the charge that it violated the Con- 
stitution, and that it was legislating for the rich* against the poor. 
The Democrats in the Senate, reduced in numbers, were united and 
compacted by their defeat, and never had abler leaders. Franklin 
Pierce, Levi Woodbury, Silas Wright, James Buchanan, John C. 
Calhoun, William R. King, Robert J. Walker, William Allen, 
Lewis F. Linn, Thomas H. Benton, with associates of scarcely less 
eminence, acted, says Benton, " on a system, and with a thorough 
organization, and on a perfect understanding. There were but 
twenty-two of us, but every one a speaker, and effective. We kept 
their measures upon the anvil, and hammered them continually ; 
we impaled them against the wall, and stabbed them incessantly." 
Almost every sentence of their speeches had its separate sting, often 
going to the very verge of parliamentary freedom of debate. " Ac- 
tion, action, action," cried Calhoun, "means nothing but plunder, 
plunder, plunder ! " 

As soon as the new rule had been adopted in the House, and the 
peaceable submission of the minonty ascertained, Mr. Clay gave 
notice of his purpose to introduce it in the Senate. Fortunately for 
the Senate, fortunately for the country, he encountered a very dif- 
ferent spirit from that which prevailed in the lower branch. 

Mr. Benton states that the Democratic Senators, having got 
wind of what was to come, had consulted together and taken their 
resolve to defy and dare it — to resist its introduction and trample 
upon the rule if voted ; and, in the mean time, to gain an advan- 
tage with the public by rendering odious the attempt. In pur- 
suance of this agreement, the minority did not wait for Mr. Clay 
formally to propose his rule, but raised the first pretext to demand 
an explanation of his purposes. In reply to some remarks of Silas 
Wright on the fiscal-bank bill, Mr. Clay charged that the opposition 
to the measure was meant to delay the public business, " with no 
other design than to protract to the last moment the measures for 
which this session had been expressly called. This, too, was at a 
time when the whole country was crying out in an agony of dis- 
tress for relief." 

Mr. Calhoun resented this imputation with great spirit, and de- 
manded : " Did the Senator from Kentucky mean to apply to the 
Senate the gag law passed in the other branch of Congress ? If 
he did, it was time he should know that he and his friends were 
prepared to meet him on that point." 


Mr. Clay replied that he was " ready at any moment to bring 
forward and support a measure that should give to the majority the 
control of the business of the Senate of the United States. Let 
them denounce it as much as they pleased in advance ; unmoved 
by any of their denunciations and threats, standing firm in support 
of the interests which he believed the country demanded, for one 
he was ready for the adoption of a rule which would place the busi- 
ness of the Senate under the control of a majority of the Senate." 

Mr. Calhoun said there was '* no doubt of the Senator's predilec- 
tion for a gag law. Let him bring on that measure as soon as ever 
he i)leases." Mr. Benton : " Come on with it." 

Benton, in his " Thirty Years' View," states that Mr. Clay found 
that some of his associates who had agreed to stand by him in estab- 
lishing the hour rule withdrew their promise under the firm opposi- 
tion of the minority, and that the latter had determined not only to 
opjjose the adoption of the rule, but to resist its execution, even if 
the resistance should involve disorder and violence. Mr. Clay 
under these circumstances gave way, but proposed the introduction 
of the previous question, expecting this would be accepted as a 
compromise. Three days after the former debate he declared that 
" the minority ccmtrolled the action of the Senate, and caused all 
the delay in the public business. They obstruct the majority in 
the dispatch of all business of importance to the country, and par- 
ticularly those measures which the majority is bound to give to 
the country without further delay. Did not this reduce the major- 
ity to the necessity of adopting some measure which would place 
the control of the business of the session in their hands ? It was 
impossible to do without it ; it must be resorted to." 

Benton says that " several Whig Senators had refused to go 
with Mr. Clay for the hour rule, and forced him to give it up ; but 
they had agreed to go for the previous question, which he held to 
be equally effective, and was in fact more so, as it cut off debate at 
any moment. It was just as offensive as the other." 

Mr. King, afterward Vice-President, said he was " truly sorry 
to see the honorable Senator so far forgetting what is due to the 
Senate as to talk of C9ercing it by any possible abridgment of its 
free action. The freedom of debate had never yet been abridged 
in that body since the foundation of this Government. Was it 
fit or becoming, after fifty years of unrestrained liberty, to threaten 
it with a gag law ? He could tell the Senator that, peaceable a man 
as he []Mr. King] was, whenever it was attempted to violate that 


sanctuary, he, for one, would resist that attempt even unto the 

It was thought best that the public mind should be prepared for 
what might follow by a full statement of the position of the minor- 
ity, which Mr. Benton was designated by his Democratic associates 
to make. The report of his speech in the " Congressional Globe " is 
somewhat tamer than that found in the newspapers of the day. He 
said : " He understood it was in contemplation to introduce the pre- 
vious question into the Senate, not only in its ordinary proceedings, 
but in Committee of the Whole. It was easy to see how a bill 
would be amended there. He should consider an attempt to rule 
the Senate by the despotism of the gag as bad as introducing a 
band of soldiers into it to force measures through by pitching 
opposing Senators out of the windows." 

He closed by saying : 

Sir, when the previous question shall be brought into this chamber — when 
it shall be applied to our bills in our quasi committee — I am ready to see my 
legislative life terminated. I vrant no seat here when that shall be the case. 
As the Romans held their natural lives, so do I hold my political existence. 
The Roman carried his life on the point of his sword; and when that life 
ceased to be honorable to himself or useful to his country, he fell upon his 
sword, and died. This made of that people the most warlike and heroic 
nation of the earth. What they did with their natural lives I am willing to 
do with my legislative and political existence : I am willing to terminate it 
when it shall cease to be honorable to myself or useful to my country ; and 
that I feel would be the case when this chamber, stripped of its constitutional 
freedom, shall receive the gag and muzzle of the previous question. 

Mr. Clay flinched before this resolute resistance, and in a day 
or two abandoned his project amid the taunts and defiance of his 

Benton closes his naiTative of this extraordinary contest by re- 
marking : " Thus, the firmness of the minority in the Senate — it may 
be said their courage, for their intended resistance contemplated 
any possible extremity — saved the body from degradation, consti- 
tutional legislation from suppression, the liberty of speech from 
extinction, and the honor of republican government from a dis- 
grace to which the people's representatives are not subjected in 
any monarchy in Europe. The previous question has not been 
called in the British House of Commons in one hundred years, 
and never in the House of Peers." 

Neither party appears to much advantage in this narrative. 


The Democratic leaders did not overrate the injurious consequences 
to public liberty of the suppression of debate and amendment at the 
will of a majority. The suppression of these in one branch of the 
national Icgi^latiiw renders infinitely more important their preser- 
vation in the other. Mr. Clay and his associates seem to have been 
acting under the pressure of a temporary exigency, and to have 
given little consideration to the grave and far-reaching consequences 
which their schemes involved. It is probable that the debate would 
have so fully exhibited the evil effects of the previous question on 
the Senate that Mr. Clay would have lost his slender majority 
before the vote ; if not, the attitude taken by the Democratic party 
toward the rule would have assured its early rei^eal. But, however 
indefensible in principle, the Constitution gives to the Senate the 
power to make rules for the conduct of its business, and the ques- 
tion whether this rule were constitutional or expedient is one of 
which the Senate itself must, of necessity, be the final judge. The 
threat to resist its determination by violence was treasonable in its 
nature. Clay yielded to such threats, as he did in his compromise 
bill of 1832, and in his compromise bills of 1850. Benton was 
approving and sharing a defiance of lawful authority similar in kind 
to that which he supported Jackson in suppressing in 1832, and to 
that the shadow of whose near approach saddened the closing hours 
of his own life in 1858. We are dealing, however, with the effect 
of the previous question on the conduct of legislative business. 
The c nduct of those who proposed or of those who defended it is 
foreign to our present purpose. 

The vast increase of public business in modern times has pressed 
as heavily on the British Parliament as it ever did on Congress. 
On three occasions — in 1848, in 1854, and in 1861 — committees have 
been appointed, including some of the ablest and most experienced 
members, to suggest a remedy. On the committee in 1848 were 
Lord John Russell, Sir Robert Peel, Mr. Disraeli, Mr. Hume, Mr. 
Cobden, and Mr. Evelyn Denison, since Speaker ; on that of 1861, 
Lord Palmerston, Mr. Bright, I^ord Stanley, Mr. Disraeli, Sir 
George Grey, and Sir John Pakington. These men have had each 
of them a personal responsibility for the conduct of public business 
in Parliament, and were quite as likely as Mr. Clay to be impatient 
of the useless consumption of time in fruitless debate. But it never 
seems to have occurred to any of them to consider for a moment 
that it was possible to secure the dispatch of business by any 
abridgment of the freedom of debate. The committee in 1848 
VOL. cxxvni. — NO. 267. 9 


took evidence as to the course of business in our House of Repre- 
sentatives and in the French Assembly, examining Mr. Edward 
Curtis of New York, Mr. Josiah Randall of Philadelphia, and M. 
Guizot. The last named was examined by Sir Robert Peel and Mr. 
Cobden as to the operation of la cloture in the French Chamber of 
Deputies. He declared that he did not remember a case where la 
cldture was demanded by the majority to suppress discussion, and 
that, even with its existence, all subjects are amply and fairly de- 

The committee of 1848 say in their report : 

The Parliament of the United Kingdom conducts the whole work of 
public and private legislation, and to it all parties Lave recourse for the 
redress of real or supposed grievances. The extent, also, of the colonial 
empire of Great Britain imposes very heavy additional duties on the Imperial 
Legislature. It is certain that a far greater amount of business is transacted 
by the English House of Commons than by the Chamber of Deputies of 
France, or by the Legislative Assembly of the United States. (" Report of 
Select Committee on Public Revenues," 1847-'48, p. vii.) 

Neither they nor the committee of fifty-four in 1861 suggest any 
interference with the freedom of debate. In 1861 the average 
length of the session was eight hours, thirty-four minutes, fifty- 
seven seconds. The number of days of the session was one hundred 
and forty-five ; the number of hours the House sat after midnight, 
one hundred and forty-seven. The committee declare : 

The old rules and orders, when carefully considered and narrowly inves- 
tigated, are found to be the safeguard of freedom of debate, and a sure de- 
fense against the oppression of overpowering majorities. 

One other peculiarity of the conduct of business in the House, 
under its present methods, is the absen<)e of responsible leadership. 
In the British Parliament the whole executive power of the Govern- 
ment is lodged. The prime minister, if a commoner, is the recog- 
nized leader of the majority of the House of Commons ; if he is a 
peer, the function of leadership of that House is vested in a member 
of the Government, selected for that i)urpose usually for his tact 
and ability in debate. Differences of opinion, jealousies, struggles 
for personal advancement, distract the counsels of political parties 
in England as they do with us ; but they are reserved for the 
secrecy of cabinet discussions, and are not permitted to show them- 
selves ia public in the House. 

Lord Palmerston's diary for May 22, 1828, gives a curious ac- 


count of the conduct of business in the cabinet, of which he was a 
member : 

The cabinet has gone on for sonle time past as it had done before, differ- 
ing upon ahnost every qiie>tion of any importance that has been brought 
under consideration : nK-eting to debate and dispute, and separating without 

To this Sir Henry Bulwer adds : 

I can not lielp observinjr, with reference to the sentence ^ast quoted, that 
the father of the late Lord Holland, who had lived almost all his life with 
cabinet ministers, once said to me that ho had never known a cabinet in 
which its members did not dispute more among themselves during their 
councils than they disputed with their antagonists in the House of Commons. 

These discords disapjuar when the measures of the Government 
are lirought into the publicity of the House of Commons. Her Ma- 
jesty's Government are responsible for the due preparation of all 
imjiortant measures. By the standing orders the right is reserved 
to her ^lajesty's ministers of placing Government orders at the 
head of the list on every order day except Wednesday ; and near 
the close of the session this precedence is extended to other days, 
and sometimes to Wednesdays. In our House the business suffers 
from the want of some such arrangement. All subjects of legisla- 
tion are parceled out among the different committees. Each of 
these almost comes to regard itself as a little legislature, and con- 
tends with great jealousy against encroachments on its own juris- 

With rare and conspicuous exceptions of persons who bring to 
the House when they enter it a reputation which insures them a 
place at the head of some important committee, the members attain 
places of influence on these committees by seniority. The House 
becomes in this way a sort of presbytery, the senior member of each 
leading committee having special influence over his own subject. 
The result is, that there is a struggle betAveen the different leading 
committees for the opportunity to bring their questions before the 
House. Toward the close of the session this contest becomes spe- 
cially apparent. A member who has carefully prepared some impor- 
tant measure, with which he is identified in public estimation, feels 
that the success or failure of his political career depends upon his 
getting an opportunity to bring it to a vote. As the termination 
of the session approaches, the appropriation bills press for passage. 
The rules of the House give the Committees on Appropriations and 


on Ways and Means, who have charge of the kindred measures of 
revenue, the right to report at any time when a member is not 
speaking. The right to report from a conference committee is even 
more highly privileged, and may be exercised when a member is 
actually on his feet in the midst of a speech. The chairman of the 
Committee on Appropriations, who may be held responsible if one 
of the great bills under his charge fails and an extra session is made 
necessary, feels that he must use his power without much mercy. 
The result is, that he becomes almost the natural enemy of every 
other important bill before the House. In the Forty-first Con- 
gress, General Schenck, as chairman of the Ways and Means Com- 
mittee, prepared a thorough revision of the tariff. The House spent 
many days and nights in perfecting the bill. At last, on the 16th 
of May, the chairman of the Appropriations Committee moved that 
the bill be postponed until after the appropriation bills. This mo- 
tion was hotly resisted by the chairman of Ways and Means, but 
was adopted by a vote of 92 to 77, the Democrats voting for the 
motion in a body. Thus, the most important measure of the session, 
which had taken the House months to mature and perfect, was de- 
feated by the opposition combining with a few Republicans, under 
the lead of the chairman of one of the two most important commit- 
tees, against the resistance of the chairman of the other. Such an 
occurrence in the British Commons would have caused the over- 
throw of an administration. It could hardly be termed unusual in 
any Republican House for the past twenty years. 

In the winter of 1874-'75 the House ordered several investiga- 
tions into the condition of Southern States. On the 24th of Feb- 
ruary, eight days before the session ended. Judge Poland of Ver- 
mont had in his charge a bill which undertook to settle the question 
which of two rival State governments should be recognized in 
Arkansas ; General Coburn of Indiana had in charge a bill which 
provided for a new general election in Alabama ; the chairman of 
the Louisiana special committee reported the resolutions which gave 
peace to that State, under the arrangement known as the Wheeler 
compromise ; Mr. Conger, representing the Yicksburg committee, 
demanded precedence for a consideration of the affairs of Missis- 
sippi ; while Mr. Smith of New York, from the Committee on Elec- 
tions, claimed consideration for an important bill in relation to 
counting the votes in the election of President and Vice-President 
of the United States. They were encountered by General Garfield, 
the chairman of the Committee on Appropriations, and one of the 


two unquestioned Republican leaders of the House, with a motion 
to take up the appropriation bills. This motion prevailed by 147 
to 101, General Garfield and a few Republicans voting with the 
solid Democratic column against the large majority of the Repub- 
licans of the House to overthrow those important measures which 
nearly the whole of his own party favored, just as his predecessor 
overthrew General Schenck's tariff bill, which had a large majority 
of the Republican party. The Louisiana resolutions were adopted 
a fgw days after, on the 1st of March, the chairman of Appropria- 
tions, with great reluctance, consenting to permit a vote on them 
to be taken without debate, and the Republicans being strong 
enough to carry them by suspending the rules. I do not mean by 
this narrative to impute the least blame to General Garfield, or to 
his distinguished predecessor. Each of them was doing with entire 
fidelity the important duty he had undertaken of seeing to it that 
the appropriation bills, without which the functions of the Govern- 
ment must cease, were not lost. Neither of them had any more 
responsibility than the humblest member of the House for anything 
that did not come from his own committee. 

It would be easy to multiply instances. The strength of the 
personal influence of able and popular men is and must be very 
great in a body composed as is our House of Representatives. But 
there is no man on the floor whose position gives him the right to 
lead ; no man who is responsible that each measure receives its due 
share of attention ; no man of prominence who is not likely to have 
matters under his special charge which, in the struggle for the com- 
mand of the previous hours when the session draws near its end, 
tempt him to thrust out of the House other measures of equal pub- 
lic consequence. 

It is needless to set forth at length the evils which this state of 
things brings forth. There is one which I regard as peculiarly un- 
fortunate for the character and dignity of the House, and whose 
bad consequences can hardly be overstated. It is that almost in- 
evitably the Speaker of the House is forced into the position of a 
party leader. 

The space of this article will not allow me to point out other 
kindred evils that have grown up in the recent practice of the House 
of Representatives. Those to which I have called attention are the 
most important, and are growing year by year. The House is losing 
its freedom of debate, of amendment, even of knowledge of what 
it is itself doing. A member is almost the last person to ask what 


is contained in an appropriation bill on its final passage. More and 
more the contest over important measures is a contest, not whether 
they shall be discussed, but whether they shall be brought to a vote. 
The Speaker becomes a party leader, while obliged to observe forms 
of impartiality. There is nowhere responsibility for securing due 
attention to important measures, and no authority to decide between 
their different claims. The chairman of the principal committee 
becomes almost the natural enemy of every other committee in the 

I must take another occasion to deal with the question of remedy 
for these evils. I do not believe in radical changes in the institu- 
tions of the state, contrived by doctrinaires. The practice of the 
House of Representatives is a growth, not a scheme. Still less 
would I urge a blind reverence for English examples. But if we 
could in some way secure a Speaker who should be absolutely in- 
dependent of party, it would be a great gain. If the three com- 
mittees. Ways and Means, Appropriations, and Banking and Cur- 
rency, could be blended in one, as formerly, the number of this 
committee to be at least fifteen, dividing its functions among sub- 
committees, the chairman never himself to have charge of an ap- 
propriation bill, but to be responsible for the order of business of 
the House, subject, of course, to the control of the body itself, a 
great step in efficiency would be gained. 

But the great point, the restoration to the House of its function 
of a deliberative assembly, can only be fully accomplished by a re- 
duction of its members. I know the strong objections to this re- 
duction. For obvious reasons, it is not likely to receive the assent 
of the House itself, until demanded by an irresistible public opinion. 
That demand may be long delayed, perhaps avoided altogether, by 
making provision for removing from Congress the consideration of 
private claims, thereby diminishing the pressure of business, and by 
a reorganization of the system of committees, which shall give the 
House the benefit of responsible leadership. 

Geokge F. Hoar. 




It is now nearly twenty-nine years since the passage by the New 
York State Legislature, in April, 1850, of a general law relating to 
railroads. There wert no giants in those days. Possibly, how- 
ever, the far-seeing and remarkable man who originated the vast 
combinations which now control, to a great extent, the internal com- 
merce of the country, was even then engaged upon those plans which 
resulted in the formation of what a public speaker^in the recent 
political campaign in New York City characterized as the closest and 
wealthiest corporation in America. It is a significant fact that the 
occasion which called forth this remark was an effort to prevent the 
importation of the Forty-second Street influence into the City Hall, 
through the election to the mayoralty of a gentleman who has long 
been identified with the interests of the company alluded to. Every 
well-regulated State very properly undertakes to control many of 
its public corporations, so that, through a perfect knowledge of 
their financial condition, only to be ascertained through complete 
and enforced reports, the public at large may know to what extent 
it is safe to trust their promises to pay, losses, interest, or dividends, 
as the case may be. 

The purpose of this paper is to invite attention to the laws of 
New York, which, as they now stand, render possible, either the ren- 
dering of no account whatever of their financial condition, by com- 
panies whose stocks may constitute the sole means of subsistence 
of otherwise helpless families, or the publishing of such statements, 
or reports, as are a mockery of t"he law, and an insult to the com- 
mon sense of every business man. 

The New York Central and Hudson River Railroad Company is 


the most prominent and important of all the railroad corporations 
of the United States. Upon its honest and successful administra- 
tion depends the welfare of a greater number of our people than 
upon any other enterprise or investment of capital in the United 
States. Because it is the most prominent and apparently the most 
successful of this class of corporations, and because it appears to 
furnish an illustration of the existence of such laws, a brief review 
of its history and practices is here proposed. There are other cor- 
porations, almost equally important, which will have attention in 
the future. 

For some ten years past, no perfect "general balance-sheet" 
has been published by the company ; and it is not a little singular 
that this circumstance, instead of awakening the suspicions of 
brokers and investors, seems to have been entirely ignored. The 
market price of the stock has been governed by the fact that it has 
paid eight per cent, dividends, regardless of the absence of any 
proof of its intrinsic value, as indicated by the existence of a due 
proportion of assets to liabilities. There has been, to be sure, given 
to the public every year, through Poor's " Railroad Manual," a state- 
ment purporting to show the financial status of the concern, but this 
exhibit will be demonstrated to be untrue and impossible on its face. 
The Lake Shore and Michigan Southern Company, which is under 
the same direction, furnishes annually, if not the very best, certainly 
one of the best reports in the country, a document that any manage- 
ment, may well be proud of. Why, then, it may not unreasonably be 
asked, if the New York Central has nothing to conceal, does it not 
give an equally explicit statement ? The reputation of the stock, 
acquired by its continual payment of eight per cent, dividends, and 
the knowledge by the direction that it is widely known and con- 
stantly quoted as an investment stock, would seem to make it the 
imperative duty of the company to publish such full particulars 
of its condition as shall leave no doubt of the actual value of the 
stock in the minds of trustees and others seeking a safe invest- 

The history of the enterprise, for the purposes of this article, 
dates back to 1853. In that year the energetic founders succeeded 
in consummating their great scheme of consolidating eleven different 
companies operating in the State of New York between Albany on 
the Hudson River and Lake Erie, the stocks and convertible bonds 
of which amounted, as will be seen from the following figures, to 
$23,235,600 : 


Rochester and Lake Ontario $150,000 

Syracuse and Utica Direct 600,000 

Schnectady and Troy 650,000 

Ruffalo and Lockport 675,000 

Mohawk Vulk'V 1,575,000 

Albany and Schenectady 1,621,800 

Rochester, Lockport and Niagara Falls 2,155,100 

Syracuse and Utica 2,700,000 

Buffalo and Rochester 3,000,000 

Utica and Schenectady 4,500,000 

Rochester and Syracuse 5,608,700 


For this amount, stock in the new coq^oration was exchanged, 
it has been stated, to the extent of 8*^4,000,000. The various com- 
panies had enjoyed different degrees of prosperity, and their stocks, 
consequently, bore different values. In the settlement, a computa- 
tion of these values was made, and the difference settled by issuing 
bonds of the Central to the various stockholders, payable in thirty 
years — that is, in 1883 — with interest at six per cent. These bonds 
were denominated "debt certificates (future income)," amounted 
to 88,894,500, and were provided for by a sinking fund of one and 
a quarter per cent., say 8111,182, payable annually out of the future 
income of the road. The attention of the reader is specially called 
to these details, as in them may be found the first evidence of ques- 
tionable statements put forth by the company. The business of the 
new line continued to increase, being of course greatly augmented 
by the war of 1861-'65, down to the year 18G9, when a new and 
further consolidation was effected by uniting the Central with the 
Hudson River road, thus forming the present company. The last 
regular balance-sheet of the New York Central Company published 
in Poor's " Railroad Manual " was for the year 1868, and may be 
found on pages 204, 205, of that work for 1869-'70. It is here 
reproduced for examination : 

Construction account $36,607,697 

Cash 2,372^855 

Buffalo tind State Line Railroad stock " 816,687 

Troy Union Railroad stock 89 350 

Hudson River Bridge stock 467 500 

Erie and Pittsburg Railroad bonds 212 971 

Debt certificates (future income) 6,023,689 

Fuel and supplies 759,776 

Bills receivable 519,053 

General Post-Office 34,936 

Real estate 32',500 



Capital stock $28,'780,000 

Funded debt 11,458,904 

Unclaimed dividends 5,777 

Expenses (paid in October) 688,553 

Interest accrued 301,072 

United States tax account 71,795 

Income balance 6,630,913 


For the information of persons who may not be familiar with 
book-keeping, it may be pointed out that the two statements balance, 
that is, they equal each other in amount. The first represents the 
assets, and the second the liabilities of the company. In the lat- 
ter will be found the item "income balance, 86,630,913," which, 
not being in the nature of a liability or debt, purports to be the ex- 
cess of the assets over the liabilities. In other words, it purports 
to show that, if the company had at that date converted its assets 
into cash, and therewith paid off all its liabilities, it would have had 
remaining in its possession a surplus of $6,630,913. But to produce 
this result it is necessary that the items found in the list of assets 
shall be veritable assets. On examining the list we find in it the 
item of " debt certificates (future income), $6,023,689," being the 
alleged unpaid balance of the $8,894,560, issued in 1853, the remain- 
der having been converted, or paid by the sinking fund created for 
that purpose. As these are not assets, they must be deducted from 
the list — the result being Jthat the company, instead of having on 
hand at that date a surplus of $6,630,913, had really only $607,224. 
In plain terms, the statement represents the condition of the com- 
pany as being better than it actually was by $6,023,689. To make 
this plain to the dullest comprehension, the following figures are 
presented : 

Amount of assets as per statement $47,937,014 

Deduct item of debt certificates, as not being an asset 6,023,689 


Amount of liabilities as per statement $47,937,014 

Deduct item of income balance, as not being a liability 6,630,913 

Income balance (synonymous with surplus, or profit and loss) . . 607,224 


To the professional book-keeper, it is only necessary to say that 
the original sum of $8,894,560, for which bonds were issued, being 


an expense or loss incurred by the company in effecting the con- 
solidation, should have been charged at the time of the transaction 
lo profit and loss account, and afterward closed into income bal- 
ance account. The stock sold in December, 1868, at 159. As the 
company in that year paid only seven per cent, dividend, there could 
have been no reason for the stock ruling so high in the market ex- 
cept the belief on the part of the public that the statement regard- 
ing its financial condition was true. From this time forward the plot 
thickens. In this year (18G8) the famous scrip dividend of eighty 
per cent., convertible into stock, was declared, and in the following 
year the consolidation with the Hudson River road was carried into 
effect. The result of these two operations may be learned from the 
following figures : 

Original capital of the two roads $44,815,800 

Present capital 89,428,300 

Increase $44,612,500 

This increase appears to be just so much money made to the 
stockholders out of nothing. In these transactions may be found 
the explanation of the present attitude of the company toward the 
city of New York. There can now be little question that they 
represent the hugest financial blunder of the age. But, although 
the stockholders may be said to have made this large amount with- 
out giving an equivalent therefor, it is certain that some other 
parties must in some way or other pay it to them, and that these 
other parties are the public at large. The capital once doubled, if 
the value of the stock were to be maintained, regular dividends 
must be declared, and this could only be done by means of doubled 
business or increased rates of freight to be paid by the public, or, 
if needful, by a combination of both expedients. To increase the 
difficulty of the situation, the enormous impulse given by the war 
to the traffic of the country had begun to subside. The railroad 
interest was among the first to feel this. The New York Central 
continued to meet its regular payments up to 1871, but in the suc- 
ceeding year its earnings seem to have been insufficient to provide 
for the sinking-fund demand of $111,182. This payment was passed 
in 1872, and has never been made since. The following statement, 
compiled from the annual reports to the State Engineer and Sur- 
veyor, shows that in the last six years the earnings of the company 
have fallen short of the amount required to meet the s^king fund 
by $430,102.21 : 



Earnings in 1872 $25,580,675 87 Balance. 

Payments, except to sinking fund 25,565,873 23 $14,802 64 

Earnings in 1873 $29,126,851 I'i 

Payments, except to sinking fund 29,105,330 77 21,520 40 

Earnings in 1874 $31,650,386 72 

Payments, except to sinking fund 31,534,471 16 115,915 56 

Earnings in 1875 $29,027,218 03 

Payments, except to sinking fund 28,824,702 33 202,515 70 

Earnings in 1876 $28,046,688 45 

Payments, except to sinking fund 27,973,040 73 73,547 72 

$428,302 02 
Earnings in 1878 $26,579,085 90 

Payments, except to sinking fund 26,776,398 i3 

Deduct deficit $197,312 23 197,312 23 

$230,989 79 
Six years' sinking fund, $111,182 667,092 00 

Deficit $436,102 21 

The great revulsion of 1873, from whicli we are slowly emerging, 
has been called by thoughtful observers the " Railroad Panic," from 
the fact that railroad building was the last theatre of active specu- 
lation to which the remnants of the immense money accumulations 
of the war were transferred. Oil-wells, coal-mines, gold and silver 
mines, and village plots had been thoroughly exploited and as 
thoroughly exhausted. It would appear, from the figures here 
given, that a crisis was reached in the affairs of the New York 
Central in 1872, and subsequent events indicate that it was boldly 
met, in a manner characteristic of the presiding officer. 

The exigencies of the case seem to have demanded immediate 
action, and this could be but in one direction. Hence the building 
of the additional tracks ; the creation of the blanket mortgage of 
$40,000,000 in January, 1873 ; and the increase of the funded debt 
from $16,496,020 in 1872, to $40,003,667.62 in 1875. The deficiency 
of $197,312.23 in the operations of 1877, as shown above, super- 
added to the failure of the company to meet the sinking-fund quota 
of $111,182, looks as if this supreme effort had not been crowned 
with the success anticipated. In the light of the foregoing facts, 
the extraordinary letter of the President, published this summer, 
in which he states that " the New York roads have put New York 
on an equality " (in the matter of freight rates) " with the most fa- 


vored rival" (city), "her merchants must do the rest," intimating 
that he feels bound to see that other cities shall not suffer through 
the commercial supremacy of New York, is apparently susceptible 
of but one construction. It seems to utter the sentiments of a man 
who, having exhausted every business appliance, at last stands at 
bay, against friend and foe. 

During the last live years it may be said that the country has 
been in a state of bankruptcy. No class, no interest, has been exempt. 
From the humble depositor in the Dime Savings Institution to the 
millionaire promoters of railway undertakings that should grasp the 
continent with a span, all have alike bowed to the inevitable. Some 
of the soundest banks have reduced their capitals largely — capital, 
too, which represented solid money. Time will show whether the 
company under consideration is superior to all financial and com- 
mercial laws. 

The preceding statements of earnings and payments are derived 
from the published reports of the company, which are sworn to, as 
required by law, and should therefore be truthful. One of them 
for the year ending September 30, 1870, is here presented for the 
thoughtful consideration of the reader. 

Earnings and Cash Receipts and Payments. 


From passengers $6,738,592 01 

From freight 14,489,216 52 

Rents, interest, divideuds on stocks held in other railroad 
companies, use of engines and cars, work done at shops, 
telegraph, mail service, and miscellaneous items 1,135,511 14 

$22,363,319 67 


For transportation expenses $14,068,079 31 

For interest 1,093,840 80 

For dividends paid and balance on hand for dividends, October 

15, 1870, at the rate of eight per cent 6,861,241 29 

For United States tax on earnings 168,975 89 

For rents 60,000 00 

For sinking fund .....,..,o 111,182 38 

$22,363,319 67 

The officers swear that in that year the company earned precisely 

enough money to pay certain fixed charges — no more, and no less. 

If it be true that the receipts in that year from passengers was 

16,738,592.01, and that the odd cent was the amount needed to 



make up a sufficient sum to meet exactly the fixed charges of the 
road for the year, then it may be conceded that the days of miracles 
and of supernatural intervention have not departed ! But if there 
is some mistake about it, then the legal maxim, " Falsiis hi imo, 
falsns in omnibus,^'* must be commended to the reflections of those 

To speak more seriously, can any sane business man believe such 
a report ? And yet it is duly and formally sworn to, accepted and 
presented to the Legislature by the State Engineer and Surveyor, 
and printed and distributed in the bound volume of annual rejDorts. 

But there be sins of omission as well as sins of commission, and, 
mindful of this pregnant fact, it is here asked if the provisions of 
subdivision 101, section 31, chapter 140, of the act passed April 2, 
1850, entitled " An act to authorize the formation of railroad cor- 
porations, and to regulate the same," have ever been complied with 
by the New York Central. The inquiry is important, because the 
act is known as the general railroad law, and, by the subdivision 
here indicated, the company is required to report annually the 
" payments to surjDlus fund, and total amount of said fund." The 
object of this inquiry will be understood when it is explained that, 
in the yearly statement furnished by the company to Poor's *' Rail- 
road Manual," there appear the following language and figures : 

Financial Statement, September 30, 18 7 7. 

Construction $75,033,786 52 

Equipment 17,868,949 26 

Engineering, etc 2,999,473 27 

Branches, etc 3,230,199 66 

Balance, reserved ) ^ ^ ^ 30,631,336 84 

fund, etc ) 

8129,763,745 55 

Capital stock $89,232,900 00 

" " certificates 195,400 00 

Funded debt 39,801,233 33 

Bonds and mortgages 

and real estate. 

534,212 22 

$129,763,745 55 

The wording of the last item in the left-hand column is ingen- 
ious by hardly ingenuous. By the term " balance, reserved fund, 
etc.," there is evidently an implication that a reserve or surplus does 
exist, but how much of the large amount of 830,631,336.84 is of 
that character, is left entirely to the imagination of the reader. To 
assist the latter in his dilemma, it is suggested that the right-hand 
column contains simply an account of the debts due by the company, 
while the left shows the means at its disposal wherewith to pay them. 
If we suppose that each of the ^\q items in the left-hand column is 
an asset equivalent to cash, and could be instantly converted into 


money, it will be seen that, collectively, they would produce an 
amount precisely sufficient to liquidate the debts, so that he must 
have indeed a lively imagination who can discover any reserved 
fund in the premises. If, now, we turn to page 308, Table II., sub- 
division 101 of the printed volume of the State Engineer and Sur- 
veyor's Reports to the Legislature for 18T7, we shall find, in the 
column entitled " Amount carried to surplus fund," a conspicuous 
blank space opposite the name of the New York Central and Hud- 
son River Company. 

It will not be denied that a case of this kind furnishes grave 
reasons for dissatisfaction. The question is, What is the remedy, 
and can it be eifectually applied? It is obvious that the irregulari- 
ties complained of are the fruits of imperfect legislation, and that 
consequently the remedy lies in a revision of the railroad laws. 
Not only do the present laws fail to call for such information -as 
will demonstrate the financial condition of a company at a given 
period, but the penalties provided for non-compliance are so piti- 
fully inadequate as to almost constitute a premium for disobedi- 
ence. For instance, section 32 of the general act of 1850 reads as 
follows : " Any such corporation which shall neglect to make the 
report as is provided in the preceding section shall be liable to a 
penalty of two hundred and fifty dollars, to be sued for in the 
name of the people, for their use." As if the amount of fine were 
not small enough, it is provided that if any person expend time and 
money to bring a delinquent company to book, the money recov- 
ered may not reimburse him, but shall go for the use of the people. 
Section 8, chapter 900, laws of 18G7, amends the preceding by im- 
])Osing an additional fine of *' twenty-five dollars for each day after 
the first day of December on which they shall neglect to file said 
rei)ort ; " but this emendation is but slightly less ridiculous than the 
original provision. Indeed, it may be doubted if anything can be 
found in the entire railroad code to conflict with the supposition 
that it was framed directly in the interest of the roads, and under 
the inspiration of their agents. A defect in the law is the omission 
to prescribe the form of oath by which the correctness of the report 
is attested. Section 31 of the law of 1850 provides that the an- 
nual report shall be verified by the oaths of the Treasurer or Presi- 
dent, and acting Superintendent of operations, neither of which offi- 
cers can be supposed to be personally acquainted with the contents 
of the books or the methods of entries. They, accordingly, swear 
that they "have caused the foregoing statements to be prepared 


by the proper officers and agents of the company from the books 
and records, and have examined them as far as practicable, and 
believe them to be correct." Practically, this oath amounts to 
nothing. Were a proper form prepared, to be signed by the chief 
book-keeper, auditor, and secretary, besides the officers already 
named, a long step would be taken toward the attainment of cor- 

The same section contains 105 subdivisions specifying the par- 
ticular information to be set forth in the report. As touching the 
receipts of the company the following particulars are demanded : 

Subdivision 95. Receipts during the year from freight. 
" 96. From passengers. 

" 97. From other sources, specifying what, in detail. 

It will occur to any thinking person that if a railroad company 
pay eight per cent, dividends during a period of general bankruptcy, 
it is but natural that the stockholders should desire to know that the 
earnings from which the dividends are paid are legitimate. Now 
mark what the company under consideration reports for the last six 
years, as a compliance with the requirements of the law: 

From Report of September 30, 18Y2. 


From passengers $6,662,006 82 

From freight 16,259,646 79 

Car service $882,078 54 

Rents ■ 217,807 99 

Mail service 192,870 00 

Telegraph 5,964 89 

Interest 58,274 70 

Miscellaneous 1,302,026 14 

2,659,022 26 

$25,580,675 87 
From Report of September 30, 1873. 


From passengers $6,999,456 01 

From freight 19,616,017 90 

Car sevice $1,104,527 23 

Rents 235,940 54 

Mail service 179,172 55 

Telegraph 7,948 55 

Interest 154,888 81 

Miscellaneous 828,899 58 

2,511,377 26 

$29,126,851 17 

From Report of September 30, 18Y4. 


From passengers ^ $7,497,356 54 

From freight , 20,348,725 23 

Car service 81,292,655 67 

Rents 679,386 12 

Mail service 350,961 25 

Telegraph 7,395 76 

Interest 230,551 38 

Use of road 274,904 36 

Miflccllaneous 968,450 41 

3,804,304 95 
$31,650,386 72 

From Report of September 30, 1875. 


From passengers 87,276,847 54 

From freight 17,899,701 50 

Car service $1,078,331 30 

Rents 730,636 87 

Mail service 325,319 00 

Telegraph 5,215 50 

Interest 263,869 27 

Use of road 273,964 74 

Miscellaneous 1,173,332 31 

3,850,668 99 
$29,027,218 03 

From Report of September 30, 1876. 


From passengers $6,762,966 88 

From freight , 17,593,264 78 

Car service $973,293 01 

Rents 828,615 16 

Mail service 446,537 00 

Telegraph 4,434 62 

Interest 337,801 33 

Use of road 261,092 77 

Miscellaneous 838,582 90 

3,690,356 79 

$28,046,588 45 

VOL. cxxvni. — NO. 267. 10 


From Report of September 30, ISYV. 

E E C E I P T S . 

From passengers $6,5'76,816 83 

From freight 16,424,316 6*7 

Car service $1,05'7,113 74 

Rents i;055,855 72 

Mail service 326,420 52 

Telegraph 4,417 89 

Interest 355,281 24 

Use of road 236,008 31 

Miscellaneous » 542,855 48 

8,577,952 90 

$26,579,085 90 

The preceding statements contain, in detail, the receipts of 
money from all the regular and ordinary sources that the company 
can be supposed to have at command, and in addition thereto : 

Miscellaneous, 1872 $1,302,026 14 

" 1873 828,899 58 

" 1874 968,450 41 

'♦ 1875 1,173,332 31 

" 1876 838,582 90 

" 1877 542,855 48 

Total miscellaneous $5,654,146 82 

The dividends paid in these years were as follows : 

Dividends, 1872 $7,244,831 78 

" 1873 7,136,790 08 

" 1874 ■ 7,136,884 60 

" 1875 7,136,679 97 

" 1876 7,139,528 00 

" 1877 7,140,659 48 

Total dividends $42,935,373 91 

So that, when the stockholder puts his dividend check in his pock- 
et, he has the satisfaction of knowing that more than thirteen per 
cent, of it consists of a miscellaneous and mysterious receipt which 
the company declines to " specify in detail." When the redoubt- 
able Mr. Punch, of famous London town, characterized as the 
"Great Unaccountable," an alderman who was suspected of ab- 
sorbing city moneys, but who firmly declined giving an account of 
his stewardship, he probably did not foresee that he was giving 
currency to a term that might become a classic among his "kin 
beyond sea." 


It must not, however, be imagined that the New York Central 
monopolizes the distinction of contemning the law, and putting 
forth statements based, apparently, on improper book-keeping. An 
astounding chapter might be written concerning entries to be found 
in the books of another railway corporation, that has recently at- 
tracted a large share of public attention. 

The law of this country, very wisely, recognizes no class or 
family as superior to all others in the management of corporations, 
or as free from the dangers of ambition, error, and peculation. 
With rare exceptions, either in this country or in England, have 
directors been found, no matter how important their titles or their 
families, who could or would safely and honestly administer the 
business of great corporations, unchecked and uncontrolled, by 
complete and absolute publicity both in general and in detail. 
Absolute knowledge and unlimited publicity can alone prevent 
such disasters as have recently, in England, been so great as to 
paralyze private credit and to beggar whole classes of people, who 
trusted everything to the respectable names of those controlling 
their property. Once given all the facts, the press will soon dis- 
cover the weak spots in the balance-sheet, the errors of administra- 
tion, or the frauds of managers. Figures cannot lie. But, that 
this truism may be made eifective, all the figures and all the facts 
must be given ; and to this end, our laws touching the form and 
substance of such reports as are proper to be made require instant 
and thorough revision. 

Ax Accountant. 


As the Greeks were reminded that brave men existed before 
Agamemnon, so it may be well for the present generation of Ameri- 
cans to reflect that our land produced great statesmen in the past, 
whose memory should be cherished. 

The populace, and especially in republics, has ever been attract- 
ed by the glitter of the soldier, the clang of whose martial shout 
deadens the footfall of the statesman, as the bray of the ass the song 
of the nightingale. Ignorant savages crowd in adoration about the 
loud, criarde colors of a sign-painting, while the masterpieces of 
Raphael or Correggio pass unnoticed. Napoleon wished to go down 
to posterity with the " Code " in his hand, but posterity forgets the 
great lawgiver, who made France, in despite of revolutions and ca- 
lamities, the first of industrial and economic nations, and remembers 
Lodi and the Pyramids, Marengo and Austerlitz. Many, who have 
heard of Blenheim and Malplaquet, are ignorant of the fact that 
Marlborough was the most accomplished diplomatist of his age, and 
that all his skill was required to keep the frugal Dutch, the greedy 
Germans, and the selfish Austrians true to the " grande alliance." 

In popular estimation Washington is always crossing the Dela- 
ware or receiving the sword of Comwallis. His lofty patriotism, 
his pure motives, his calm civic wisdom are measurably overlooked, 
though his capacity as a commander did not reach mediocrity, and 
was far below that of Greene, the only general produced by our 
Revolutionary struggle. 

The character and composition of our population strengthen 
this tendency. Many thousands of our citizens migrated from des- 
potic governments, where they had dreamed of liberty as " monks 
of love." Without capacity for discrimination, they have mistaken 
for heroes, soldiers whose only triumphs have been over their own 
countrymen; for patriots, selfish place-hunters, and for statesmen, un- 
scrupulous partisans. Vituperation has passed for eloquence, slan- 


der for truth, denunciation for argument, and the practice of using 
official station as a means to private fortune has been regarded as 
evidence of loyalty to the Union. But if this Union is to endure 
as the home of national liberty, as the asylum of the nations ; if the 
Federal authority is to be a beneficent agent for all and a tyranny 
for none, leaving the right of self-government to the people in their 
several communities, wo must recur to the principles and methods. 
of the founders of the republic, study their characters and acts, and 
emulate their examples. Among the wise and good who in the past 
century secured the independence of our country and founded its 
government, George Mason, of Virginia, holds a place second to 

Of all pursuits in which men engage, agriculture best promotes 
sound minds in healthy bodies, when she is a kindly handmaid, 
not an exacting taskmistress. The yeoman, compelled to follow 
his plow-tail from dawn till dark, has little time for thought, less 
for study, and usually falls into that bovine condition characteristic 
of his class ; but the proprietor who superintends his estate, and 
whose capital absolves him from the necessity of constant labor, 
has ample time for reflection and books, and his contact with mother 
earth is as refreshing as was that of the classic giant. To such pro- 
prietors England and America are deeply indebted. They con- 
ceived and brought forth the true spirit of liberty, liberty of thought, 
of speech, of action ; whose limitation was at the point where its 
exercise intrenched upon the rights of others. Equally opposed to 
the tyranny of monarchs and majorities, they asserted the rights of 
individuals, and, controlled by dignity and self-respect, accorded to 
the persons and opinions of others the same courteous consideration 
which they claimed for their own. To this class in England be- 
longed Eliot, Vane, Hampden, and, in America, George Mason. 

His ancestor, of the same name, came to Virginia in 1651-52. 
A Staffordshire gentleman of fair estate, he sat in the House of 
Commons in the reign of the first Charles, whose arbitrary mea- 
sures he steadily opposed, but, like Clarendon, Falkland, and many 
others, joined the royal army at the outbreak of war. As a colonel 
of horse, he served until the royal cause went down at Worcester — 
the " crowning mercy " of Cromwell — when he escaped the country 
and established himself in Virginia. A younger brother — William 
— accompanied him. This William settled at Norfolk, Virginia, 
where he married and died, leaving a son who removed to Boston, 
Massachusetts. It is pleasant to think of the formal but kindly 


intercourse that was doubtless kept up between the Yirginia and 
Massachusetts cousins after their separation. Codfish, chow-chow, 
and chutney — for Salem and Boston were early traders to the East 
Indies — were exchanged as tokens of kinship for hams and tobacco, 
and with all the stately phraseology marking the friendship between 
the houses of Waverley and Bradwardine. Now, ^^ nous avons 
change tout cela^'' and it requires some effort of the imagination to 
recall a time when there was sympathy between Yirginia and Mas- 

A great-grandson of the royalist colonel, and of the same name, 
married in 1726 Miss Anne Thomson, a relative of Sir William 
Temple, the wise and virtuous minister of the second Charles, who 
negotiated the triple alliance between England, Holland, and Sweden, 
to curb the ambition of the fourteenth Louis. George Mason, the 
subject of this memoir, was the first child of the marriage, and was 
born near the close of 1726, at Doeg's Neck, in Stafford (now Fair- 
fax) County, Yirginia. 

His childhood and youth were passed on the paternal estate, 
amid the wholesome and cheery influences of the country life of the 
period, when horse and hound, rod and gun filled a large place in 
the daily life of the Yirginia gentry. The practice of sending 
youths of birth and expectations home, across sea, to be educated, 
was not followed in his case, but he was most carefully instructed at 
home, imbibing a taste for books and habits of study which he re- 
tained throughout life. Especially was he versed in English history, 
from Magna Charta to Somers's " Declaration," adopted by the con- 
vention calling William and Mary to the throne, and the struggles 
and methods by which our ancestors wrought out their liberties had 
been carefully studied by him. In the experience of our English 
fathers assaults upon liberty were to be apprehended from executive 
power, and hence they sought to protect it by limitations of the 
authority of the Crown ; but Mason distrusted the nature of all 
power, its greed and tendency to encroachment, and in the Constitu- 
tion of Yirginia — largely his work, and the first written constitution 
of a free commonwealth in history — adopted on the 29th of June, 
1776, he restrained legislative and judicial as well as executive 

He succeeded to the family estate of Doeg's Neck at the death 
of his father, who was drowned by the accidental upsetting of his 
sail-boat in the Potomac. 

Subsequently, he married Miss Ann Eilbeck, of Charles County, 


Maryland, and built a new mansion on his property, wliich he called 
Gunston Hall, in honor of the seat of his maternal ancestry in 
EnMand. The estate consisted of seven thousand acres, and lies on 
the Potomac next below 3Iount Vernon. With his neighbor and 
devoted friend, Washington, he was a pewholdcr and vestryman of 
old Pohick Church. 

Absorbed by the care of an increasing family and a great estate, 
Mason, was averse to a public career, but no man in the colonies 
more closely watched the current of events, or held more decided 
opinions as to the rights of the people and the duty of asserting 
them. In 17 GO the merchants of London addressed a public letter 
to the planters of Virginia, to which Mason, in the London " Public 
Ledger," replied, defending the position maintained by the colonists, 
and concluding with — " These are the sentiments of a man who 
spends most of his time in retirement, and has seldom meddled in 
public all'airs ; who enjoys a moderate but independent fortune, 
and, content with the blessings of a private station, equally disre- 
gards the smiles and frowns of the great." When Parliament 
subsequently asserted the right to tax the colonies "^V^ all cases 
irhatsoevery'^ ^lason wrote a tract entitled " Extracts from the 
Virginia Charters, with some Remarks upon them." From this many 
of the arixuments ajj^ainst the claim of the Crown were drawn. In 
a letter to a friend in England, dated 1770, he writes : " We will 
not submit to have our money taken out of our pockets without 
our consent or that of our representatives ; because, if any man, or 
any set of men, without such consent, take from us one shilling in 
the pound, we have no security for the remaining nineteen." 

Li 17G0 he prepared the non-importation resolutions which were 
offered by AVashington in the Virginia Assembly, and unanimously 
adopted. Among these resolutions was one not to import or pur- 
chase any imported slaves after the 1st day of November ensuing. 

It may be said that Mason was the only leading man of the time 
to foresee the difficulties and dangers of the slave question. At a 
meeting of the people of Fairfax, held on the 18th of July, 1774, 
and presided over by Washington, Mason made his first public appear- 
ance on the theatre of the Revolution, by presenting a series of 
twenty-four resolutions, which embraced a statement of grievances 
and proposed the means and measure of redress. The ground of 
controversy with the Crown was reviewed, a Congress of the colo- 
nies recommended, and the policy of non-intercourse with the mother- 
country urged. These resolutions, conspicuous in our annals, w^ere 



transmitted to the first Virginia Convention which met at Williams- 
burg in the following August. They were sanctioned by that body, 
and substantially adopted by the first general Congress on the 20th 
of October of the same year. 

Mason first appeared in the public councils as deputy from the 
county of Fairfax to the Virginia Convention in 1775, when he was 
elected a member of the Committee of Safety, and, at an early period 
of the session, pressed by Peyton Randolph, Pendleton, JelPerson, 
and others to accept a seat in Congress. This last he declined. The 
recent death of his beloved wife, leaving to his care nine children, 
made him unwilling to go abroad. To one of Mason's warm affec- 
tions and domestic habits this bereavement was especially heavy. 
In a letter to a friend, written four years after, he alludes to this 
unhealed wound. The Convention of 1775 adjourned on the 29th 
of August, leaving the administration of the government in the 
hands of the Committee of Safety. It reassembled on the 6th of 
May, 1776, but Mason, detained by an attack of gout, did not take 
his seat until the 18th. The resolution instructing the delegates of 
Virginia in Congress to propose independence had been adopted 
three days before, when the committee to prepare a declaration of 
rights and a plan of government was appointed. He was imme- 
diately placed on this committee, as well as on three others. Propo- 
sitions and Grievances, Privileges and Elections, and for the encour- 
agement of the manufacture of salt, saltpetre, and gunpowder. 

That a private gentleman of a retiring disposition should, on his 
appearance in council, have been charged with such responsibilities, 
is proof of his reputation, and of the general confidence reposed in 
his judgment and patriotism. 

The Declaration of Rights was reported by the committee to the 
Convention on the 27th of May, and on the 12th of June, 1776, was 
adopted by a unanimous vote. This great instrument, the first of 
its kind, the work of a scholar, statesman, and patriot, in which may 
be found the history of English and American liberty, is here given : 



A DECLARATION of rights made by the representatives of the good 
people of Virginia, assembled in full and free convention ; which rights do 
pertain to them and their posterity, as the basis and foundation of govern- 
ment, unanimously adopted by the Convention of Virginia, June 12, 1776 : 

1. That all men are created equally free and independent, and have cer- 


tain inherent naturcol rights of which they can not, by any compact, deprive 
or divest their posterity ; among which are the enjoyment of life and liberty, 
with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and ob- 
taining haj)piness and safety. 

2. That all power is by God and nature vested in and consequently de- 
rived from the people ; that magistrates are their trustees and servants, and 
at all times amenable to them. 

3. That gov%rninont is, or ought to be, instituted for the common benefit, 
protection, and security of the people, nation, or community. Of all the 
various modes and forms of government, that is best whicli^s capable ot 
producing the greatest degree of happiness and safety, and is most effectually 
s.cnred against the danger of administration ; and that whenever any gov- 
ernment shall be found inadequate or contrary to these purposes, a majority 
of the community hath an indubitable, unalienable, indefeasible right to 
reform, alter, or abolish it, in such manner as shall be judged most condu- 
cive to the public weal. 

4. That no man, or set of men, are entitled to exclusive or separate 
emoluments or privileges from the community, but in consideration of pub- 
lic services ; which, not being descendible, neither ought the oflSces of ma- 
gistrate, legislator, or judge to be hereditary. 

5. That the legislative and executive powers of the state should be sep- 
arate and distinct from the judicial ; and that the members of the two first 
may be restrained from oppression, by feeling and participating the burthens 
of the people, they should, at fixed periods, be reduced to a private station, 
and return unto that body from wliich they were originally taken, and vacan- 
cies be supplied by frequent, certain, and regular elections. 

6. That elections of members, to serve as representatives of the people 
in the Legislature, ought to be free, and that all men havingsufiicient evidence 
of permanent, common interest with and attachment to the community, 
have the right of suffrage ; and can not bo taxed or deprived of their prop- 
erty for public uses without their own consent, or that of their representa- 
tives so elected, nor bound by any law to which they have not, in like man- 
ner, assented for the common good. 

7. That all power of suspending laws, or the execution of laws, by any 
authority, without consent of the representatives of the people, is injurious 
to their rights and ought not to be exercised. 

8. That in all capital or criminal prosecutions a man hath a right to 
demand the cause and nature of his accusation, to be confronted with the 
accusers and witnesses, to call for evidence in his favor, and to a speedy trial 
by an impartial jury of his vicinage ; without unanimous consent he can not 
be found guilty, nor can he be compelled to give evidence against himself ; and 
that no man bo deprived of his liberty, except by the law of the land, or the 
judgment of his peers. 

9. That excessive bail ought not to be required, nor excessive fines im- 
posed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted. 

10. That in controversies respecting property, and in suits between man 


and man, the ancient trial by jury is preferable to any other, and ought to 
be held sacred. 

11. Tliat the freedom of the press is one of the great bulwarks of liberty, 
and can never be restrained but by despotic governments. 

12. That a well-regulated militia, composed of the body of the people 
trained to arms, is the proper, natural, and safe defense of a free state ; that 
standing armies in time of peace should be avoided, as dangerous to liberty; 
and that in all cases the military should be under strict subordination to and 
governed by tlie civil power. 

13. That^o free government or the blessing of liberty can be preserved 
to any people but by a firm adherence to justice, moderation, temperance, 
frugality, and virtue, and by frequent recurrence to fundamental principles. 

14. That religion, or the duty which we owe to our Creator, and the 
manner of discharging it, can be directed only by reason and conviction, not 
by force or violence ; and, therefore, that it is the mutual duty of all men to 
practice Christian forbearance, love, and charity, toward each other. 

This is from the manuscript wi'itten by Mason, to which he 
added, " This Declaration of Rights was the first in America," and 
herein are to be found all the principles of the subsequent " Decla- 
ration of Independence " and the declaratory enactments of the 
several States. Indeed, the great principles on which free govern- 
ment rests are more perspicuously and forcibly stated by Mason 
than by his followers and copyists. 

In a letter to a friend, written more than two years after, an 
allusion is made to the " Declaration," and, as it exhibits Mason's 
opinions at a critical period, as well as his style, the letter is here 
given : 

ViBQiNiA, GuNSTON Hall, October 2, 1778. 
My dear Sie : It gave me great pleasure, upon receipt of your favor of 
the 23d of April (by Mr. Digges), to hear that you are alive and well, in a 
country where you can spend your time agreeably ; not having heard a word 
from you or of you for two years before. I am much obliged by the friendly 
concern you take in my domestic affairs, and your kind inquiry after my 
family ; great alterations have happened in it. About four years ago I had 
the misfortune to lose my wife : to you who knew her, and the happy man- 
ner in which we lived, I will not attempt to describe my feelings. I was 
scarce able to bear the first shock ; a depression of spirits, a settled melan- 
choly followed, from which I never expect or desire to recover. I deter- 
mined to spend the remainder of my days in privacy and retirement with 
my children, from whose society alone I could expect comfort. Some of 
them are now grown up to men and women ; and I have the satisfaction to 
see them free from vices, good-natured, obliging, and dutiful ; they all still 
live with me and remain single, except my second daughter, who is lately 
married to my neighbor's son. My eldest daughter (who is blessed with her 


n. *' ""> amittMo disposition) is mistress of my family, and manages my little 
(. .r matters with a degree of prudence far above her years'. My eldest 

Bon engaged early in the American cause, and was chosen ensign of the first 
independent company formed in Virginia, or indeed on the continent; it 
was commanded by the i)resent (Jeneral Washington as captain, and consisted 
entirely of gentlemen. In the year 1775 he was appointed a captain of foot 
in one of the first minute regiments raised here ; but was soon obliged to 
quit the service by a violent rheunmtic disorder, which has followed him 
ever since, and, I believe, will force him to try the climate of France or 
Italy. My other sons have not yet finished their education ; as soon as they 
do, if the war continues, they seem strongly inclined to take an active part. 

In the summer of 1775 I was, much against my inclination, dragged out 
of my retirement, by the peo[)le of my county, and sent as a delegate to the 
General Convention at Richmond, where I was appointed a member of the first 
Committee of Safety ; and have since, at difi*erent times, been chosen a mem- 
ber of the Privy Council and of the American Congress ; but have constantly 
declined acting in any other public character tlian that of an independent 
representative of the people, in the House of Delegates, where I still remain, 
from a consciousness of being able to do my country more service there than 
in any other department, and have ever since devoted most of my time to 
public business, to the no small neglect and injury of my private fortune ; 
but if I can only live to see the American Union firndy fixed, and free gov- 
ernments well established in our Western world, and can leave to my children 
but a crust of bread and liberty, I shall die satisfied, and say, with the psalm- 
ist, '' Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace." 

To show you that I have not been an idle spectator of this great contest, 
and to amuse you with the sentiments of an old friend upon an important 
subject, I inclose you a copy of the first draught of the Declaration of Kights, 
just as it was drawn and presented by me to the Virginia Convention, where 
it received few alterations, some of them I think not for the better : this was 
the first thing of the kind uj)on the continent, and has been closely imitated 
by all the States. We have laid our new government upon a broad founda- 
tion, and have endeavored to provide the most eff'ectual securities for the 
essential rights of human nature, both in civil and religious liberty; the peo- 
ple become every day more and more attached to it ; and I trust that neither 
the power of Great Britain nor the power of hell will be able to prevail 
against it. . . . To talk of replacing us in the situation of 1763, as we first 
asked, is to the last degree absurd and impossible : they obstinately refused 
it v.'hile it was in their power, and now that it is out of their power they 
off'er it. Can they raise our cities out of their ashes? Can they replace, in 
ease and aftluence, the thousands of families whom they have ruined ? Can 
they restore the husband to tlie widow, the child to the parent, or the father to 
the orphan ? In a word, can they reanimate the dead ? . . . The die is cast, 
the Rubicon is passed, and a reconciliation with Great Britain, upon the terms 
of returning to her government, is impossible. ... As long as we had any 
well-founded hopes of reconciliation, I opposed, to the utmost of my power, 


all violent measures, and such as might shut the door to it ; but when reo- 
onciliation became a lost hope, when unconditional submission or effectual 
resistance were the only alternatives left us, when the last dutiful and hum- 
ble petition from Congress received no other answer than declaring us rebels 
and out of the King's protection, I, from that moment, looked forward to 
a revolution and independence as the only means of salvation ; and will risk 
the last penny of my fortune and the last drop of ray blood upon the issue. 
. . . God has been pleased to bless our endeavors in a just cause with re- 
markable success. 'J'o us upon the spot, who have seen step by step the prog- 
ress of this great contest, who know the defenseless state of America in the 
beginning, and the numberless difficulties we have had to struggle with, 
taking a retrospective view of what is passed, we seem to have been treading 
upon enchanted ground. The case is now altered. American prospects 
brigliten and appearances are strongly in our favor. The British ministry 
must and will acknowledge us independent States. 

The well-balanced intellect, the noble independence of character, 
the unselfish patriotism of the man stand forth in every sentence 
of this letter. Indeed, all the opinions of George Mason, written 
or spoken, deserve attention. A collection of his writings and 
speeches would be an admirable text-book, wherein the student 
could find the true meaning of civil and religious liberty, the duty 
of a citizen in a free state, and the proper limitations of govern- 

After the adoption of the Constitution, Mason was appointed 
chairman of the committee to draft the T)aths to be taken by the 
Governor and Council, and was subsequently made a member of 
the committee to revise the laws. It is remarkable that a man 
without professional training should have been placed at the head 
of committees, consisting of the ablest lawyers of the day, to deal 
T\dth purely legal subjects. The last duty assigned him by the 
Convention of 177G was to assist in the preparation of a seal for 
the new Commonwealth, and the present seal of Virginia, with the 
" Sic semper tyrannis^'' was recommended and adopted. 

At this time Mason was fifty years of age, his dark hair sprin- 
kled with gray, but retaining all the fire of youth in his bright eyes. 
Nearly six feet in height, his frame was massive, yet, despite of his 
hereditary gout, his step was elastic and free. His love of field- 
sports presei-ved the activity of his limbs, and exposure to the open 
air had deepened his swarthy complexion. His contemporaries seem 
to have been much impressed by his dignified bearing. This de- 
scription of his personal appearance is confirmed by his portrait, 
which was preserved at Clermont, Fairfax County, Virginia, resi- 


dence of the widow of General John Mason, fourth and last sur- 
viving son of George. 

In the first Virginia Assembly under the new Constitution Ma- 
son's talents for debate, as well as his liberal tendencies, were con- 
spicuously displayed in many warm discussions. Assisted by Jef- 
ferson he brought forward, and carried through, measures for the 
repeal of all the old disabling acts, and for legalizing all modes of 
worship, releasing dissenters from parish rates. 

. Madison declared him the ablest man in debate that he had ever 
hoard ; and Jefferson, near the close of his life, wTote : " I had many 
occasional and strenuous coadjutors in debate ; and one most stead- 
fast, able and zealous, who was himself a host. This was George 
Mason, a man of the first order of wisdom among those who acted 
on the theatre of the Uevoliition, of expansive mind, profound judg- 
ment, cogent in argument, learned in the lore of our former Con- 
stitution, and earnest for the republican change on democratic 
principles. His elocution was neither flowing nor smooth ; but his 
language was strong, his manner most impressive, and strengthened 
by a dash of biting cynicism, when provocation made it seasonable." 

In 1777 Mason was elected a member of the Continental Con- 
gress, and was engaged in correspondence and consultation about 
public affaii's with leading men, but took no conspicuous part until 
1787, when he was chosen a member of the Federal Convention to 
frame the Constitution of the United States. Devoted to his home 
and children, he preferred privacy, and a sense of duty alone could 
induce him to accept public station. He took the lead in the de- 
bates on the formation of the Constitution, and always on the liberal 
and democratic side. When the question was discussed whether the 
House of Representatives should be elected directly by the people, 
he maintained that no republican government could stand without 
popular confidence, and that confidence could only be secured by 
giving to the people the election of one branch of the Legislature. 
He also favored the election of the President directly by the peo- 
ple and for one term, with ineligibility afterward, but opposed the 
project to give the Federal Legislature a veto on all State laws. 
He denounced the proposition to make slaves equal to freemen as a 
basis for representation, or to require a property qualification from 
voters. With great fire and energy he spoke against the clause in 
the Constitution which prohibited the abolition of the slave trade 
until 1808, declaring slavery to be a source of national weakness and 
demoralizatio7i, and that it was essential for the General Goverrh- 


ment to have the poicer to jt)reve?2^ its increase / this by a Virginia 
planter, himself a large owner of slaves. The Convention defeated 
some of Mason's efforts to render the Constitution more democratic ; 
and, an enemy to all implied and constructive powers, he was espe- 
cially dissatisfied wdth the extended and indefinite authority con- 
ferred on Congress and the executive, declining for these reasons 
to sign it. 

On his return to Virginia he was chosen a member of the Con- 
vention called to ratify or reject the Federal Constitution, where he 
led the opposition to ratification, unless subjected to amendments. 
Those proposed by him were a Bill of Rights and some twenty altera- 
tions in the body of the instrument. Several of these amendments 
were subsequently adopted by Congress and the States. In this 
debate Mason, followed by Patrick Henry in the Virginia Conven- 
tion, and by Luther Martin in that of Maryland, clearly pointed out 
the danger of implied and constructive powers, and foretold the evils 
that would come. He was elected the first United States Senator 
from Virginia under the Constitution, but declined the position and 
retired to Gunston Hall, where he passed the three remaining years 
of his life with his children and books, preserving his fondness for 
field-sports to the last. 

He died in the autumn of 1792, and was buried at Gunston Hall. 
A plain marble slab, inscribed with his name, date of birth and 
death, marks the spot ; but, with those of other illustrious Virgin- 
ians, his statue stands at the base of Crawford's statue of Washing- 
ton in front of the Capitol at Richmond. 

The following extract from his last will and testament is charac- 
teristic : " I recommend it to my sons, from my own experience in 
life, to prefer the happiness of independence and a private station 
to the troubles and vexations of public business ; but if either their 
own inclinations or the necessity of the times should engage them 
in public affairs, I charge them, on a father's blessing, never to let 
the motives of private interest or ambition induce them to betray, 
nor the terrors of poverty and disgrace, or the fear of danger or of 
death, deter them from asserting the liberty of their country, and 
endeavoring to transmit to their posterity those sacred rights to 
which themselves were born." But the limits of a " Review article " 
are too restricted to give more than a sketch of Mason's public 
career. To be appreciated by the political student, who desires to 
understand the principles of free government and the formative his- 
tory of the Federal Constitution, his work must be sought in the 


journals of Congress, in the Declaration of Rights, Constitution and 
revised Code of Virginia, and in the debates of the Federal and Vir- 
ginia Conventions, as must his affectionate nature in such letters to 
children and friends as have been preserved ; and it may be safely 
asserted that no one can carefully exhaust these sources without 
doubting whether his own or any age has produced a men superior 
to George Mason in all the elements of greatness. 

" Bon sang ne pent mentir," says the old French proverb, and 
the stock planted in Virginia by the ex-colonel of royal horse proves 
its truth. George Mason declined the position of Senator. His 
nephew, Stephen Thomson Mason, was a Senator from Virginia in 
1794—1803. Another nephew, John Thomson Mason, was offered 
the- position of Attorney-General of the United States by Jefferson, 
and again by Madison, but declined. A grand-nephew, Armistead 
Thomson Mason, was elected a Senator from Virginia in 1815, but 
fell in a duel with his cousin, John Mason McCarty, at the age of 
thirty-two. A grandson, Richard B. Mason, colonel and brevet- 
brigadier in the United States Army, was the first civil and military 
Governor of California. Another grandson, James Murray Mason, 
was sent to the Senate by Virginia in 1837, and remained a member 
until the civil war, when he went as Confederate commissioner to 
England. Descended, but more remotely, from the same stock was 
John Y. Mason, of Virginia, who was Secretary of the Navy under 
Tyler, held the same office, as well as that of Attorney-General, 
under Polk, and died in Paris, whither he had been sent by Pierce 
as United States Minister. Few families have furnished as many 
distinguished men to the service of the republic. 

On the soil of Virginia rests the tomb of George Mason, within 
sound of the Capitol of the Union which he labored to establish, 
while pointing out, and in vain endeavoring to strengthen, the 
weak places in its foundation. A Virginian to the core, his sym- 
pathies extended to the uttermost limits of the colonies, and were 
as deeply stirred by the sufferings of Massachusetts as were those 
of her own great patriots, the Adamses, Warren, Hancock. Mayhap 
there lurks some germ of truth in the weird superstition that dis- 
embodied spirits keep watch and ward over the resting-places of 
their mortal remains. What changes has the spirit of Mason wit- 
nessed since his body was returned to earth ! As the mighty 
prophets of Israel, mournfully has he watched the fulfillment of his 
own predictions. He strove for a Union of consent and love. He 
has seen one of force and hate. He urged independent States to 


create a common servant, the Federal Government, as a useful 
agent. He has seen the creature they called into being rend, like 
Frankenstein, its creators, disperse their assemblies at the point of 
the bayonet, deprive their citizens of every legal right. This he 
was prepared for ; this he foretold. While his mind was pregnant 
of the Union, like the Queen of Ilium, he dreamed of firebrands, 
knowing the greed of all power and the necessity for its limitation. 
But even he must be startled as he listens to the sentiments of the 
representatives of New England uttered in the halls of Congress ; 
and more, as he hears those of the representatives of Ohio, Indiana, 
Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin, whose States were formed from 
territory so generously donated to the Union by Virginia. 

With a sadness surpassing that of Rachel, he has seen the wealth 
and cultivation of the South destroyed by unlettered multitudes 
from the interior of the continent, directed by the fanaticism of the 
East. But time is as naught to immortal spirits, and he may wit- 
ness a similar fate overtake the East, either through the physical 
force of these same multitudes, or through wild schemes of currency 
and finance, derived from the savage tribes which they have so 
recently displaced. 

The role of Cassandra is not a pleasant one, but any calamity 
may be predicted of a land wherein millions of people have for- 
gotten George Mason, to worship " old John Brown." Yet a pil- 
grimage to the shrine of Mason may restore to their first affections 
hearts alienated from our Union, and teach those whose devotion 
to it savors of fanaticism and intolerance the beautiful lesson of 
charity and love. The blood of our English fathers spilled in the 
" Great Rebellion " had not dried before Puritan and Cavalier were 
in earnest council to cement the fabric of England's greatness. 
The leaders, who had often met in mortal strife, had not passed 
into dust ere the Cavalier boasted of the unflinching endurance of 
Cromwell's " Ironsides," while the Puritan mother crooned her babe 
to sleep with songs of knightly Cavendish or Stanley. 

That it may speedily be so with us is the fervent prayer of every 
true American heart ; and then, should the cry arise that the repub- 
lic is in peril, the only rivalry between the sons of the North and 
those of the South would be, as in days of yore, who could carry 
the common banner deepest into the ranks of the common foe. 

R. Taylor. 



The condition of the colored race of the South has been, for at 
least forty years, the leading question in our politics. For the most 
part it has been an unwelcome question, forcing itself into promi- 
nence and compelling attention against the choice and interest of 
most of our political leaders and their followers. The two forces 
which would otherwise have shaped our political ends — commerce 
and empire — have feared and hated this issue. The business in- 
terests of the country have constantly deprecated its agitation ; the 
pride of empire, the sentiment of nationality, has always deplored 
its existence and struggled to banish it from the political field. The 
statesmen who from 1835 to 18G0 held the foremost places of politi- 
cal honor and influence were engaged in a continuous effort to 
settle it by superficial compromises. Their successors at the North, 
with comparatively few exceptions, refused practically to recognize 
its essential and controlling power except under the final stress of 
unavoidable necessity. The same influences were strongly felt at 
the close of the war. Not a few of the leaders of the party which 
had pushed the conflict of arms to a successful close resumed the 
old temper of compromise in dealing with the new phases which 
this question then presented. Business and the desire for a formal 
national unity loudly demanded the restoration of the South with- 
out further changes than such as the war had actually accomplished. 

Throughout this long conflict, the history of which is too fresh 
to need fuller statement, the nature of the issue touched and 
enlisted the deepest forces that affect human society. It was pri- 
marily an ethical question, a strict question of moral right and 
wrong. No economical or political tests could alone decide it. 
Conscience and the moral sense claimed jurisdiction of the question 
whether the colored race should be treated as men or as brutes, as 
brethren or as aliens and outcasts from the human family. The 

VOL. CXXVIII. — NO. 267. 11 


moral convictions of the North would permit no settlement which 
did not recognize the complete manhood of this race. The stub- 
born and fanatic bigotry of the South would consent to no settle- 
ment which did not leave the political power of the States exclusively 
in the hands of the white race. Under these influences and circum- 
stances the question, by what methods conformable to our system 
of government the civil rights belonging generally to other citizens 
might be practically secured to the colored race, became, in the 
judgment of a majority of the people, the most serious political 
problem growing out of the war. The result was the enactment by 
Congress, over the President's veto, of the reconstruction act of 
March 2, 1867, making it the condition of the restoration of the 
seceding States that new constitutions should be adopted, framed 
by "delegates elected by the male citizens, twenty-one years old 
and upward, of whatever race, color, or previous condition," and 
securing to all such persons the elective franchise. Under the pro- 
visions of this act all the seceding States were finally restored to 
their practical relations to the Union. 

In the light of present results, the policy of universal suffrage 
thus enforced at the South is condemned not only by those who 
originally opposed it, but by many who were hitherto its advocates. 
It becomes, therefore, an appropriate inquiry, whether universal suf- 
frage at the South, or especially what is commonly called negro 
suffrage, was a mistake. Such an inquiry should be made, if pos- 
sible, without reference to partisan opinions or interests. The pres- 
ent condition of the colored race of the South can not be viewed 
with toleration by any right-minded man who is acquainted with 
the facts. It is certain, too, from the nature of the question itself, 
as well as its close relations to all our public interests, that it will 
remain, as heretofore, an issue which can not be avoided. Settle- 
ments may be attempted which shall again leave this race to its 
fate, to an unaided and friendless struggle with the hostile forces 
which surround it ; but such settlements will settle nothing. In the 
mean time it is well to consider whether whatever degree of fail- 
ure may be fairly said to characterize the present results of the plan 
of Southern reconstruction is due either to the principle applied in 
the general enfranchisement of the colored race, or to the incapacity 
of that race to properly exercise the rights conferred. 

In determining the correctness of the principle adopted in the 
enfranchisement of the colored race, it is essential to recall the chief 
features of the situation when that measure was adopted, A war 


of four years, with its enormous sacrifices of life and property, had 
just ended. The cause of the war was the existence under the Gov- 
ernment of the r('])ublic of the system of chattel slavery. Aside 
from this system tlie Government was essentially republican. All 
other leading influences had, for more than three quarters of a 
century, tended toward its harmonious growth, development, and 
consolidation. Territory and population had increased beyond pre- 
cedent. A commanding position had been reached among the na- 
tions. All the elements of national prosperity and greatness had 
been developed to a high degree. Slavery, the one anti-republican 
influence, had put at hazard all this growth and glory. It had 
struck at the life of the nation. The struggle had agonized the 
land. The plain and inevitable lesson of this experience was, that 
our Government, to be safe, must be self-consistent ; that, in Mr. 
Lincoln's words, *' this Government cannot endure permanently 
half slave and half free " ; that no anti-republican element can be 
safely suffered to remain in the fabric of our Government. 

This lesson was strongly enforced by the influence of the great 
principles which inspired the founders of our Government, and still 
constituted the professed faith of the republic. By those princi- 
ples the nation was " dedicated to the proposition that all men are 
created eipial." Except in the slave States the suffrage had been 
the sign and safeguard of that civil equality contemplated by the 
fathers. The extension of the suffrage had kept even pace with the 
progress of our most prosperous and enlightened communities. The 
enjoyment by all citizens of the right of suffrage was therefore 
regarded as the true corner-stone of our Government as well as the 
best if not the only guarantee of individual freedom. In fixing the 
political conditions of the seceding States, the traditions and prin- 
ciples of our Government united in pointing to universal suffrage 
as the true defense of public welfare and personal rights. 

But, at the time of which we speak, disloyalty to the national 
Government characterized the whole white population of the South. 
The weapons of armed rebellion had but just been wrenched from 
their hands. To permit the political power of the restored States to 
be wielded exclusively by this class, was to invite the recurrence of 
the dangers so lately experienced. A basis of loyalty must be found 
on which to build the new governments. The colored race alone 
furnished this indispensable condition of reconstruction. Their 
loyalty to the Union was undoubted. It was deep, passionate, 
unfaltering. If, then, the conquered communities of the South 


were to be restored to political life and to resume their position as 
States, tlie logic of republican principles, the principles of the Decla- 
ration of Independence, and the logic of events and surrounding cir- 
cumstances, alike pointed to the immediate enfranchisement of the 
colored race as the chief feature in a wise plan of reconstruction. 
Gradual enfranchisement could not meet the conditions then exist- 
ing. Tests of property or education, if ever wise or admissible, 
under our theory of Government, were clearly inadmissible here. 
The application of these tests would exclude those whose influence 
and participation could alone insure a republican basis for the new 
governments and the political predominance of those who were 
loyal to the General Government. 

Other considerations led to the same conclusions. It was be- 
lieved, as the result of our political experience as a whole, that the 
best method of dealing with the so-called " dangerous classes " — 
those who have, for the most part, neither property nor educa- 
tion — was to admit them to the full privileges of citizenship. 
Such, with slight exceptions hardly requiring mention, had been 
the policy adopted in all the remaining States. It was believed, 
upon the same authority, that the exercise of the rights of free 
citizens was the best school for the education of the citizen in 
the proper discharge of the duties imposed by his rights. These 
beliefs were the results of experience. They were not theories 
merely. They were the practical, working rules by which our 
most successful political communities had carried on the business 
of government. Those who shaped the plan of reconstruction 
were convinced that the civil rights and future welfare of the 
colored race demanded that the ballot should be placed in its 
hands. They felt that the national Government was charged with 
the duty of recognizing and securing, so far as legislation could 
go, the complete civil and political equality of the colored race 
with the other races under our Government. This was especially 
due to that race by reason of its whole previous history in this 
country, as well as its peculiar position at the close of the war. 
But it was not sentiment alone that guided to this result. All other 
policies were open to insuperable objections. Direct military super- 
vision of the South, the continuance of the abnormal condition ex- 
isting from 1865 to 1867, or the return to power of those who had 
previously exercised exclusive political control, were the only re- 
maining policies. Neither of these policies could be justified by 
reason or experience. That temporary evils would arise from the 


imraecliatc enfranchisement of the colored race no man doubted, 
but the men who supported the measure believed, with Macaulay, 
that " there is only one cure for the evils which newly-acquired 
freedom produces — and tliat cure is freedom. When a prisoner 
leaves his cell, he cannot bear the light of day ; he is unable to 
discriminate colors or recognize faces. But the remedy is not to 
remand him into his dungeon, but to accustom him to the rays of 
the sun. . . . Many politicians of our time are in the habit of lay- 
ing it down as a self-evident proposition that no people ought to be 
free till they are tit to use their freedom. The maxim is worthy of 
the fool in the old story, who resolved not to go into the water till 
he had learned to swim ! If men are to wait for liberty till they 
become wise and good in slavery, they may indeed wait for ever." 
They believed, with Mackintosh, that "justice is the permanent 
interest of all men, and of all commonwealths," and that " the love 
of liberty is the only source and guard of the tranquillity and great- 
ness of America." They believed, with Abraham Lincoln, "All 
honor to Jefferson ; to a man who, in the concrete pressure of a 
struggle for national independence by a single people, had the cool- 
ness, forecast, and capacity to introduce into a merely revolution- 
ary document an abstract truth, applicable to all men and all times, 
and so to embalm it there, that to-day and in all coming days it 
shall be a rebuke and a stumbling-block to the harbingers of reap- 
pearing tyranny and oppression." To men of real faith in the prin- 
ciples of our government, to men who loved and practiced justice, 
who held that governments exist for the good of all the people, the 
immediate and unconditional enfranchisement of the colored race 
of the South was an act and policy supported by the highest sanc- 
tions of political justice and civil prudence. 

The charges now brought with most frequency and apparent 
effect against this policy are, first, that it was unjust and cruel to 
the white people of the South thus to subject them to negro rule ; 
and, second, that the enfranchisement of the colored race was a 
deliberate giving over of society to the control of ignorance, a 
reversal of the order of Mature and Providence which demands that 
society shall rest on intelligence and capacity, not on ignorance and 

To the first charge the reply is that colored suffrage was not the 
subjection of the white race to negro rule. The white race retained 
its suffrage, with all its immense advantages of property and edu- 
cation. Colored suffrage was simply placing the two races on the 


same plane of civil and political rights. It was the giving of a fair 
field and an equal chance to the members of both races. It was 
the removing of all legal or artificial hindrances from the path of the 
one race, without diminishing a single right or adding a single bur- 
den to the other race. Nor was this true only of the legal situation 
and relations of the two races. No restriction or hindrance in fact 
existed, under this policy, to the freest and most effective use and 
influence of all the advantages which property, education, and po- 
litical experience necessarily gave to the white race as a whole. No 
such obstacle existed either as a proper consequence of the policy 
of colored suffrage, or of the temper of that race toward the other 
race. That policy had no elements but justice and civil equality ; 
that temper was friendly and generous. The sole cause of the po- 
litical supremacy of the colored race at the South was the willful 
and deliberate refusal of the white race to contribute its proper and 
natural influence to the practical work of government. They chose 
to yield to the embittering influences of defeat and race-hatred, 
rather than to act the part of faithful citizens in guiding and con- 
trolling those whose ignorance and inexperience most imperatively 
required their aid. The necessary results of such conduct on the 
part of a class occupying such relations to any community, under 
our form of government, are obvious and uniform. It was as if 
to-day the greater part of the tax-paying and educated class in New 
England and New York should cease from all influence or aid in 
the work of government, and sullenly leave public affairs to the 
control of such as might be left to take it. Or, more exactly, it was 
as if that class, not content with refusing all aid in the conduct of pub- 
lic affairs, should seek, in a spirit of bitter and vengeful hostility, to 
deride, dishonor, and embitter those into whose hands they had sur- 
rendered the political power. It is certain that no state or com- 
munity could suffer such a separation and antagonism of its elements 
without plunging, more or less rapidly, into temporary misrule. 

But with what patience would just and reasonable men listen to 
the charge, especially when coming from those who had forsworn 
their political duties, that this result was due to the false and cruel 
policy which had established universal suffrage ? The indignant re- 
ply would be : " Your sufferings are self-inflicted, the just penalties 
of your own folly and crime ; you have sown the wind, and you reap 
the whirlwind." The best success of self-government anywhere 
presupposes a fair degree of cooperation between all classes in carry- 
ing on the work of government. If such cooperation is refused by 


the class representing property and education, that recusant class, 
not the policy or principle of self-government, is chargeable with 
the results, whatever they may be. " I do not admit," said Govern- 
or Dix, in vetoing the proposed city charter of New York in 1872, 
" that misgovernment in this city is proof of the failure of repub- 
lican government. When the Legislature gives to New York muni- 
cipal government in conformity with the general idea of American 
institutions, it performs its whole duty. All further responsibility 
is on the people of New York City themselves. If they culpably 
neglect their own affairs, if they will not give to their own political 
affairs the same attention which the rest of the people, in their 
several localities, are in the habit of giving, they must suffer the 

The second main charge brought against the policy of universal 
suffrage in our reconstruction, is perhaps sufficiently answered al- 
ready. Instead of violating or disregarding any natural or moral 
law, or law of human nature or society, it was the dictate and ex- 
pression of the highest morality applied to the affairs of govern- 
ment, the recognition and protection of the natural and inalienable 
right of all men — the opportunity, without artificial shackles or 
hindrances, to run the race of life. It is safe to say that there is 
no political community of considerable importance, either State, 
city, or large town, in our country, in which the voluntary and com- 
plete withdrawal of the greater part of the educated and property- 
owning class from all participation in public affairs would not 
speedily produce the state of things which has been denounced, when 
seen at the South, as the forcible and artificial elevation of the 
ignorant and irresponsible over the educated and responsible. The 
cause of such results wherever seen, under our Government, is 
the same. It is the violation of moral duty and natural law by 
those who are endowed with the chief power of securing and up- 
holding good government. To raise an outcry against universal 
suffrage because of results traceable directly to the neglect of their 
unquestionable duties as citizens, by the educated and tax-paying 
classes, is a conscious mockery or a pitiable mistake. No better 
words have been spoken of late on this point than these of Gold- 
win Smith : " There is yet another class dangerous in its way — the 
class of political seceders. Malcontents from this country are al- 
ways telling their sympathizing friends in Europe that the best men 
here stand aloof from politics. The answer is, that those who in a 
free country stand aloof from politics can not he the best men. A 


man is not bound to seek the prizes of public life ; he will perhaps 
exercise more influence for good if he does not ; he is not bound to 
become the slave of party ; he is not bound to sit in any conclave 
of political iniquity. But he is bound to do his utmost, in such 
ways as are morally open to him, to get the best men elected, and 
to make the right principles prevail. If he can not do much, he is 
still bound to do what he can. Striking pictures have been drawn 
of men with high foreheads and intellectual countenances con- 
demned to sit in council beside low brows and stolid faces. But 
would the matter be mended if the low brows and stolid faces had 
the council to themselves ? " 

And if, it may be further asked, the "low brows and stolid 
faces " do have the council to themselves, is it the fault of universal 
suffrage ? Does it suggest the remedy of the restriction of the suf- 
frage until the " high foreheads and intellectual countenances," with- 
out effort on their part, shall have the council to themselves ? Not till 
we abandon all pretense of faith in the cardinal doctrines of repub- 
lican government as understood and practiced hitherto in the United 
States, will it be admitted that it is the province or aim of govern- 
ment to secure to " high foreheads and intellectual countenances " 
anything more than it secures to "low brows and stolid faces," 
namely, a fair chance to exercise their own faculties, follow their 
own ends, and influence the course of public affairs according to 
their abilities and the dictates of their own judgments, subject only 
and equally to such impartial legal restraints as may be necessary 
to prevent crime and preserve public order. It is not claimed that 
there is anything sacred about the right to vote, except as it is be- 
lieved and proved to be the best means of securing those other 
rights which are sacred and inalienable — "life, liberty, and the 
pursuit of happiness." The ballot is no more than a means of se- 
curing the best government, and the best government is that under 
which all the people rise to the highest plane of intellectual and 
moral development. The American idea is that, by giving and 
securing to all the right to vote, the result in the large will always 
be, at least in any American community, that the various classes 
will have, each its appropriate influence ; that good government 
being the general interest will be the general aim ; and that in the 
process of reaching this end the whole community will be educated 
and elevated to a degree never resulting from other methods. And 
further, it is a part of this idea of government, that if for a time 
evils arise and prevail, the remedy will be constantly in the hands 


of those who suffer, and that, whenever such evils arrest the public 
attention or threaten the public welfare, the general interest will 
compel their correction and removal. If, then, under this system 
and in this country, the '' low brows and stolid faces" anywhere or 
at any time have the council to themselves, it is because the ^'high 
foreheads and intellectual countenances " have failed to use their 
proper influence. No single instance can probably be pointed out in 
our history, where it is not certain that the evils of bad government 
could have been promptly corrected by the earnest and faithful ef- 
forts of the educated and property-owning classes. The Southern 
States under colored suffrage were not exceptions to this rule. No 
class ever had greater advantages for securing a proper share of in- 
fluence in public affairs than the white race of the South in 18G7 ; no 
class were ever more open or responsive to the influences of property 
and education than the colored race of the South. The plan of re- 
construction did not set the colored race to rule over the white ; it 
did not place ignorance above education. Such results, if they have 
ever existed, were due to causes which would produce in New Eng- 
land evils similar to those which have prevailed in South Carolina 
and Louisiana. 

If we turn now to an examination of the conduct and capacity 
of the colored race as shown during the period of its free exercise 
of the suffrage, it will appear that that race exhibited qualities en- 
titling it to all the political privileges conferred by the reconstruc- 
tion measures. It is necessary here to shut out the partisan clamor 
and misrepresentation of the day, and attend only to the authentic 
facts as the ground of judgment. First, then, it may be said that 
the colored race gave to the Southern States wise, liberal, and just 
constitutions. Under influences which elsewhere had led to puni- 
tory and proscriptive measures toward those who had supported 
slavery and rebellion, the organic law of the ten States embraced in 
the reconstruction act of 18G7 shows no instance of a purpose or 
effort to exclude any classes or individuals from an equal share in 
all political privileges. The demands of public education were 
fully recognized and provided for. The methods and principles of 
taxation were just and enlightened. The modes of selecting judi- 
cial oflicers were such as prevail in the most prosperous States of 
the North. In a word, the constitutions of the reconstructed States 
would to-day command the almost unqualified approval of all com- 
petent and impartial judges and critics. And the same conclusion 
will follow from an examination of the general legislation in these 


States during the same period. It was, with few exceptions, dic- 
tated by the public wants and suited to the public needs. 

In the ordinary conduct of the practical affairs of government, 
much must be said in approval of the spirit and methods which 
then prevailed. Elections were free, fair, and honest. Political 
canvasses were conducted by the colored race without violence, or 
disorder, or excessive rancor. The power which they held they put 
fairly at hazard with each recurring election. They neither cheated 
nor intimidated nor sought to intimidate their opponents. Their 
popular assemblages listened with respect and attention to the ar- 
guments of their bitterest political foes on those rare occasions 
when their foes condescended to address them with argument. 
Public order was maintained. Crime was detected and punished. 
Life and property were as safe as in most of the States. 

There was a period of official corruption and profligacy in the 
States in which the colored vote predominated, extending generally 
from 1869 to 1874. It arose from causes already explained. It 
was confined to official life ; it was produced and inspired by a few 
leaders who had, for purposes of plunder, made their way to public 
places. As in the similar condition of affairs which prevailed in the 
city of New York from 1866 to 1873, official corruption at the South 
for a time baffled investigation and defied public sentiment. In its 
worst stages it did not equal this description, given by the " Com- 
mittee of Seventy," of corruption in New York : " It has bought 
Legislatures, controlled Governors, corrupted newspapers, defiled 
courts of justice, violated the ballot-box, threatened all forms of 
civil and religious liberty, awed the timid rich, bribed the toiling 
masses, and cajoled respectable citizens, and has finally grown so 
strong and reckless as to openly defy the intelligence and virtue 
which is believed to be inert, voiceless, and powerless to stay its 
aggressions, or to assert the supremacy of honesty and justice." 
Southern corruption assumed more grotesque, and perhaps more of- 
fensive forms, than were displayed elsewhere ; but it was never so 
powerful, daring, or pervasive as in other sections of the country. 
It never polluted the sources of political power ; it never violated 
the ballot-box; it never bribed the "toiling masses." It maybe 
said with perfect truth that the colored voters of the South never 
sustained public men whom they believed to be corrupt. They ad- 
hered with rare fidelity to those who had once gained their confi- 
dence. But, whenever a public man was shown to be corrupt, the 
colored voters rejected him with as much certainty and promptness 


as the voters of the North have shown. It is not true — with what- 
ever frequency or confidence the assertion may have been made — 
that the colored race of the South deliberately or consciously sus- 
tained leaders or public officers who were found guilty of dishonest 
conduct or corrupt practices. Such leaders and officers were de- 
prived of office and power. From 1873 till 1876, when political 
power was violently wrested from them, it is the truth of history 
that there was at the South a steady progress toward good govern- 
ment, purity of administration, reform of abuses, and the choice of 
capable and honest public officers, in those States in which the col- 
ored race had most complete control. There were here, as there are 
in all communities, sham reformers. At periods of special excite- 
ment, or under peculiar infltiences and circumstances, the reform 
movement was checked, and corrupt and dishonored leaders seemed 
for a time to regain power. But such reverses were overcome, and 
in 1870 those who had most conspicuously shown their ability and 
courage in the work of reform were in substantial control of the 
political power of the colored race. In South Carolina, where per- 
haps official corruption had been greatest, the progress of reform 
had been such as to compel tiie acknowledgment, by those who had 
most violently denounced colored suffrage, that the best assurance 
of good government in the future lay in the continuance of the 
power of those who were then successfully working out, through 
the political party supported by the colored vote, the correction of 
public abuses. 

This condition of affairs, it is to be remembered, was the result 
solely of the movement for reform within the political party which 
owed its power mainly to the colored race. The reforms accom- 
plished were demanded and supported by the colored voters. The 
reform leaders were chosen and sustained in their work by the 
sympathy and approval of a vast majority of that class of voters. 
If, as was the fact in the crusade against corruption in I^ew York, 
' party lines could have been disregarded ; if the white minority had 
looked only to securing the best means for reform and good govern- 
ment, the reform movement would have advanced to complete suc- 
cess without serious hindrance or delay. Such cooperation would 
have been welcomed by the colored race. A better agency for 
peaceful and permanent reform was never presented. The colored 
race by nature and habit were mild, peaceful, order-loving, teacha- 
ble, patient, and religious. Taught by such influences and methods 
as are made use of in other States, this race would have yielded to 


the sway of reason and justice in their political conduct, far more 
readily than did the masses through which for a time corrupt leaders 
and public officers maintained their power in New York. The work 
of maintaining good government without the aid and with the hos- 
tility of the greater part of the class possessing property and educa- 
tion must always be extremely difficult. No people or race that 
has shown itself able, under such conditions, to establish wise and 
liberal constitutions and laws, to set in successful operation the great 
agencies which produce and uphold our best civilization, and, when 
attacked and welliiigh overcome by official corruption and profli- 
gacy, to defeat and destroy this enemy, and to restore the rule of 
public integrity and honor, is without the very highest title to 
exercise the rights and assume the duties of self-government. This 
title the colored race earned by their conduct from 1868 to 1870. 

The fact of the present suppression and overthrow of colored 
suffrage at the South is now made the ground of the argument that 
the race was not equal to the duties of self-government. It is said 
that every people worthy of freedom and self-government will have 
freedom and self-government. It is said that the inability of a 
people to cope, in physical and material resources, with its enemies, 
is proof that such a people is not entitled to retain its political 
power. Such conclusions are as illogical as they are immoral. 
Under the principles of our Government and of all just govern- 
ment, rights are not dependent on numbers or physical strength or 
material resources. The right to vote, and to have that vote hon- 
estly counted — the right to hold and exercise the political power 
conferred by a majority of the votes when honestly counted — these 
are rights, under our Government, totally independent of the power 
or wealth or education of the voters. If at any time or in any 
place these rights are denied or defeated, there the most character- 
istic principle of our political system is dishonored. Nor is it an 
answer to this to say — even if the statement were true in any sense 
— that better government has been secured by the defeat of the 
will of a majority of the voters. In the first place, there can be 
no legitimate State government, good or bad, under our system, 
which does not derive its title from the actual legal result of the 
votes cast. A government otherwise derived is tainted by an origi- 
nal and incurable vice. In the next place, no government, however 
wise and pure in administration, is worth the price of a violation of 
the first principles upon which all governments, under our system, 
must rest. To hold otherwise is to make government dependent 


for its sanction, not on the consent of the governed nor on the will 
of the majority, but on the consent and will of any number or 
combination of persons who may chance to possess the preponder- 
ance of physical streni^th and resources. 

The present political supremacy of the white race in at least five 
of the Southern States is the result of the violent exclusion or 
fraudulent suppression of the colored vote. No honest and well- 
infoiTned man will question this. In South Carolina, Mississippi, 
and Louisiana, the result has been reached by a system of deliberate, 
organized violence in all its forms, supplemented and crowned by 
the most daring and stupendous election frauds. It is an intoler- 
able affront to every sentiment of humanity or dictate of justice, 
to argue that any results secured by such means are less detestable 
than the atrocities and crimes by which they were wrought. Who- 
ever prevents any lawful voter from casting his vote, or constrains 
him to cast it contrary to his will, or deprives it, when cast, of its 
equal share in determining the result of the election, is guilty of a 
palpable and vulgar fraud. The defense of such fraud, by a refer- 
ence to any results which may follow, is a specimen of degrading 

What morality and reason thus affirm, experience confirms. 
The only serious menace to the prosperity, unity, and life of the 
nation has proceeded directly from a departure from the doctrine 
of equal civil and political rights — the claim and exercise of exclu- 
sive political control by a few over the many. The South from 
1789 to 1800 was the complete type and embodiment of communi- 
ties in which political power is held exclusively by property and 
education. By a law as sure and uniform in its results as the opera- 
tions of Nature, these communities became oligarchies in the most 
odious sense of the term, hostile in spirit and action to all repub- 
lican ideas. In seventy years from the foundation of the Govern- 
ment "ordained to establish justice and secure the blessings of 
liberty," the wealth, education, and piety of the South stood ready, 
sword in hand, to destroy that Government, and to maintain in its 
place a government proclaimed by its founders to rest on the cor- 
ner-stone of human slavery. And to-day again, as in 1860, the same 
oligarchicr^l power, crushing the colored race under its feet, seeks 
with bloody and rapacious hands to grasp the national power as the 
agency through which it may extend and perpetuate its own spirit 
and practice of caste and oppression. 

D. H. Chamberlain. 



It has been often remarked that foreigners visiting Russia 
derive from their journey widely different impressions, according 
to the social classes they had intercourse with, their personal expe- 
rience, and still more, perhaps, according to the institutions, habits, 
and customs of their own country. Indeed, there scarcely can be 
found another country about which so many different opinions exist 
as about Russia. It appears to be something of a modem sphinx — 
a puzzle for all mankind, an unraveled and incomprehensible mys- 

That the present state of Russia is most deplorable is a plain 
fact, which is beyond doubt and discussion. The Russian press 
itself freely admits it. " Russia has become an empire of the dis- 
contented ! " exclaimed the celebrated Katkoff, in his " Moscow 
Gazette," shortly after the war, and this expression has been echoed 
by the whole public opinion in Russia, and given a theme to all the 
press. Reviewing the abominable cases of corruption which the 
last war has disclosed, the *' St. Petersburg Kews " says in a recent 
issue : *' The moral standard of our society seems to have sunk so 
low that we have utterly lost the faculty of distinguishing right 
from wrong, honor from baseness, patriotism from egotism. In 
almost every representative of our official spheres we are led to 
suspect a rascal and a thief. We distrust each other, we believe 
no more in ourselves, all honest principles seem to have become an 
empty phrase ; and a cold skepticism in all things not pertaining 
directly to our personal interests seems to have taken hold of the 
whole nation." Still more violent in its expressions is the " ISTovoye 
Vremja " (" ISTew Time "), the leading St. Petersburg paper. " What 
a time we are living in ! " it exclaims. " Every day brings new dis- 

* This article is printed unaltered in the author's own English. — Editor. 


closures, on all sides we are surrounded with rascals who have long 
ago lost all sense of their moral debasement. In this pestiferous 
atmosphere honest hearts lose their energy, gradually sink lower 
and lower, or are crushed in fruitless attempts to shake off the curse 
lying upon us." Such is the picture of utter demoralization drawn 
by the Russian press. Muzzled as it is by a barbarous censorship, 
it can certainly not be suspected of exaggeration. If we add to 
this picture financial exhaustion and utter impoverishment of the 
laboring classes caused by an exorbitant and disproportionate taxa- 
tion, we shall convey to the reader a fair idea of the terrible crisis 
through which Russia is now passing, and exclude the suspicion of 
attempting to conceal its importance. 

Is this state of affairs hopeless ? Is it the agony of the Russian 
nation ? lias the latter played out its part in history, and is this 
the beginning of an utter decomposition ? There is every reason 
to believe that such is not the case. The nation itself is safe and 
sound — the czardom alone, that cancer which has for centuries 
sucked the life's blood out of the Russian people, with its whole 
train, is rotting off and falling to pieces. What the world is 
now witnessing is the agony of Hussicoi autocracy. The czardom 
alone is the true cause of all the misery Russia has endiired for 
centuries and is now still enduring. With its overthrow the nation 
will breathe freely, and will at last be able to develop all its latent 
energies. Few foreigners, and especially few citizens of a free 
country, can form an adequate idea of what the Russian Czar actu- 
ally is, and of the necessary consequences of the power he is endowed 
with. I have had occasion to meet several Americans in St. Peters- 
burg who, chaiTned by the pleasant intercourse with the representa- 
tives of the Russian court and high life, were rather inclined to 
consider the Russian Government a sort of paternal and comfort- 
able arrangement, saving the peaceful citizen a good deal of trouble 
and expense, and forming a necessary part of the Russian national 
institutions. The truth, however, is that the czardom is not at all 
of Russian origin. It was born out of the Tartar yoke, which has 
weighed on Russia for two centuries. The Asiatic despotism of 
the Khans crushed all independent classes and political organiza- 
tions in Russia ; and the Czars of Moscow, after driving away the 
Tartars, continued the same policy, and achieved the work begun 
by their Moslem predecessors. 

The power concentrated in the Russian Czars is without prece- 
dent in history, and has at all times exerted a most fatal influence 


on public life in Russia as well as on the personal character of 
the Czars themselves. Trained to a slavish obedience and to the 
belief that the personal will of one man and not the law was the 
guiding principle of their whole existence, the people gradually 
sank into that political and intellectual apathy from which even 
now the mass of the Russian peasantry has not yet awakened. The 
Government took in the popular imagination the form of a law of 
Nature, the effects of which could neither be foreseen nor avoided, 
but only like those of Nature deified and adored. Not only to the 
people, however, but to the Czars themselves has their power be- 
come a curse. Feeling the awful responsibility weighing on them, 
they naturally sought to alleviate it by giving their power a divine 
character. Every one of their acts they began to consider as the 
will of God, themselves as His instruments, and every man who 
dared to oppose them as an insolent atheist not recognizing the 
dictates of Heaven, for whom no punishment could appear too cruel 
and severe. In a certain sense the opinion is well founded, that all 
Russian Czars were more or less maniacs. A human mind can not 
bear the strain put on it by the exercise of an almost divine power. 
It naturally acquires a morbid disposition, which takes different 
forms, according to the character and energy of each individual. 
A man with an undaunted will and energy becomes a maniac of 
his own power, a cold-blooded tyrant, in whose eyes the strict main- 
tenance of his " divine " rights becomes a religion, a creed it is his 
duty to uphold. The prototype of this species of " Caesarean " ma- 
nia is to be found in our century in the person of Nicholas I., the 
present Emperor's father. 

In order to understand rightly the present state of affairs in 
Russia, we must devote some of our space to the characteristics of 
that extraordinary man. Nicholas was the type of a convinced 
autocrat — of an autocrat "by the grace of God." In him all the 
traditions of ancient czardom were personified ; he exercised his 
power not only as a right, but as a holy duty, imposed on him by 
Providence, and crushed his enemies, not from personal hatred or 
out of governmental interests, but simply as a work of heavenly 

An episode which happened in 1848 with a member of my own 
family will best serve to illustrate this feature in the character of 
the " Iron Czar." A relation of mine, who was then a student at the 
St. Petersburg University, had, with a few friends, formed a literary 
society, in which the works of contemporary political economists, 


publicists, and philosophers, were read and debated. One of the 
innumerable spies of the secret police denounced the society as a 
"secret revolutionary organization," and my relative, as president 
thereof. The latter was of course arrested, locked up in one of the 
underground cells of the St. Petersburg fortress, and summarily 
condemned, by a special military court, to transportation to Siberia 
for life. 

All the influence which our family possessed in high quarters 
was brought to bear on the Czar, but all in vain. At last the mother 
of the prisoner, meeting the Czar one day during one of his solitary 
walks in the Summer Garden, threw herself at his feet, averring her 
son's innocence, and imploring his pardon. The Czar seemed to be 
profoundly touched. He raised the old lady with the most chival- 
rous and j)itying deference, and promised her to reconsider her son's 
case, and to have a personal int^'rview with him. Nicholas was true 
to his word. The very next day the young culprit was brought out 
of his cell, and, a few moments later, he stood alone before the 
Emperor. The latter took him by the hand, led him before an 
image of the Saviour suspended in a corner of the room, and, forcing 
him down on liis knees, exclaimed : 

*' Can you swear before the Almighty God that neither you nor 
your associates had any criminal design against my life ? Can you 
swear that you believe in the holiness and eternity of the Russian 
autocracy ? " 

As soon as the prisoner had recovered from his unbounded sur- 
prise, he answered : 

"I can swear to your Majesty that neither I nor any of my 
friends had the remotest design against your safety. As to the 
autocratic form of government, I can not conscientiously swear that 
1 believe in its eternity. The history of other countries teaches us 
that the time must come, even in Russia, when the people itself will 
take part in its government." 

The Czar answered not a syllable, embraced the young man with 
almost paternal tenderness, and drawing a ring from his own finger 
gave it to him, saying : 

" This is a token of respect from your Czar. You have been 
sincere and truthful to me ; and there is nothing I hate so much as 
a lie." 

He then approached his writing-table, on which the sentence of 
the court concerning my relative was lying, and with one stroke 
of the pen — signed the paper ! 

VOL. cxxvni. — NO. 267. 12 


" I pity you from the bottom of my heart," he said ; " you are an 
honest man, and an honest man, true to his convictions, is more 
dangerous to autocracy than an unprincipled rascal. Therefore I 
must punish you, though never was this duty more painful to me 
than now. God bless you, my son, and judge me mercifully if I 
should appear to be in the wrong." 

And, once more embracing his victim, he led him to the door. 

This story, every particular of which I have heard from my 
relative himself, who, at the beginning of the present reign, was 
pardoned and returned to St. Petersburg, depicts vividly the pe- 
culiarities of Nicholas's great but entirely deranged mind. The 
holiness of his position, as defender of autocracy, became a mania, 
an idee fixe, for which he would have sacrificed his life as he did 
those of others, if the occasion of doing so had presented itself. 
Nicholas may have been called the " Brutus of autocracy." Like 
all the princes of the Romanoff family, he had received but a miser- 
able education. Accustomed from childhood to deal either with 
fawning courtiers or with severely disciplined soldiers, he consid- 
ered a soldier the ideal of a true citizen, implicit obedience the 
only civic virtue, and a barrack the model of political organization. 
In his mind a spirit of military discipline was to pervade the whole 
country. TJ^ free will of each citizen was limited by the scope of 
his private life. In all public matters the *' holy power " of the Czar 
reigned paramount, and not only criticism, but a plain discus- 
sion, even a thorough knowledge of such matters on the part of a 
private citizen, was considered criminal. 

This horrible system, w^hich only the morbid imagination of a 
maniac could have invented, was carried out with a merciless logic 
and a set purpose, as only a great mind, great even in its aberrations, 
is capable of. The public schools were managed on a thoroughly 
military plan. Learning by heart was the chief occupation, and all 
sciences were " arranged " specially for Russia, so as not to give the 
slightest possible occasion for liberal theories or religious skepticism. 
In ancient history, for instance, the Roman Republic was entirely 
eliminated. From the kings the pupils had to skip over to the 
emperors, and the intermediate period was done away with the 
sentences : *' After Tarquinius the Roman people became unruly and 
revolted against the legal authorities. A time of hideous disturb- 
ance followed until Julius Caesar appeared," etc. The history of 
France was taught only up to Louis XV. The history of Russia 
was distorted in all possible ways, so as to conceal all that could 


have been interi)reted unfavorably for some of the Czars. It seems 
scarcely credible, and yet it is but the plain truth, that until the 
present day the facts of the murder of Peter III. by his wife Catha- 
rine, and of Paul I. by a conspiracy of noblemen, of which the poor 
maniac's owi\ son, the "gentle " Alexander I., was the guiding spirit, 
are not admitted to publication in Russia, and severely proscribed 
from all school-books ! 

To say that the public press was muzzled beyond description 
would scarcely give an adequate idea of the reality such as it 
was. Not only was all discussion of public affairs strictly forbidden, 
but even silence on certain matters was often considered a crime. 
Many instances may be cited of publications having been suppressed, 
not because they criticised the Government, but because they did 
7iot praise it sufficiently ! 

As I have said, this system was carried out by Nicholas with 
that steadfast logic and settled purpose peculiar to maniacs. His 
whole life, all the faculties of a naturally powerful mind, had been 
devoted to training the people into a nation of crippled idiots and 
knaves. When aftcT the crash of the Crimean war this terrible 
truth began to dawn upon him — when the stern, merciless hand of 
History showed him the abyss of corruption, rascality, ignorance, and 
apathy into which he had cast his people by carrying out what he 
deemed to be the will of God — then the " Iron Czar " broke down 
like a reed and died. It is well known to the initiated in court mat- 
ters at St. Petersburg that on his deathbed he confided to his son, 
the present Emperor, the secret of his broken life, and made him 
swear to adopt a scries of liberal measures, and before all the eman- 
cipation of the serfs, which was accordingly accomplished in 

A more striking contrast of character can scarcely be imagined 
than that which exists between Nicholas and his son and successor 
Alexander II. If the former presents a typical instance of the effects 
of czardom on a powerful, manly, and energetic mind, the latter 
illustrates, on the contrary, the perhaps still more direful influence of 
absolute power on a weak mind. Alexander received, under the au- 
spices of the poet Joukoffsky, a somewhat better education than is 
generally awarded to the princes of the Romanoff family. But at 
the same time this education inculcated in the mind of the young 
prince that vague, purposeless sentimentality of the romantic school 
of which Joukoffsky was one of the distinguished representatives. 
Combined with his naturally weak, imaginative, and unsettled dis- 


position, the romantic education he received exercised a pernicious 
influence on the further development of his faculties, impairing their 
energy and destroying that clearness and precision of thought which 
is the conditio sine qua non for an able ruler. Alexander's char- 
acter can be defined in one sentence : he has not will enough to be 
good, and he is not good enough to have a will. Keenly aware of 
the heavy responsibility which rests on him, he constantly wavers 
between two opposite resolutions ; he ponders sometimes whole years 
over one decision, and, when he at last carries it out, the right time 
for it is generally past, and it has long ago " lost the name of action." 
Hamlet on the throne, endowed with an almost superhuman power 
of doing good or evil, is the true picture of the Czar Alexander I. 
That such a character is open to all influences, that it mistakes ob- 
stinacy for strength of will, and is unable to distinguish, in the prac- 
tice of government, truth from falsehood and good from evil, need 
scarcely be added. 

Indeed, the present reign has as many phases as the Czar has 
had favorites, each phase retaining the peculiar tint of indecision 
and incompleteness cast on it by the Czar's personal character. The 
first years of the present reign awakened in the hearts of the Rus- 
sian people the most sanguine hopes. Almost immediately after 
the death of Nicholas the whole system of government changed 
abruptly. The preparatory measures to the emancipation of the 
serfs were begun, the press was given a freedom of speech altogeth- 
er unprecedented in Russia, the system of instruction underwent a 
most radical reform ; the courts, the army, the local administration, 
in short, every branch of govermiiont, was revised and reformed, 
and a new life seemed to spring up amid the ruins of the former 
tyranny. A powerful liberal movement seized Russian society. 
Everything seemed possible and attainable. Out of the maddest 
tyranny Russia was to leap with one stride into the most accom- 
plished liberalism, guided by an enlightened, benevolent Czar. 
Liberalism became the fashion, even at court. Of course even 
then, in the midst of this orgy of liberalism, men were to be found 
who were not blind enough to believe that the work of centu- 
ries could be effaced in a few days. In all the liberal excitement 
of the moment these skeptics could perceive little more than a 
passing fashion, a childish play with liberty on the part of a soci- 
ety which scarcely understood the true meaning of the word. And 
the event proved that they were right. An address, presented 
by the nobility of Moscow to the Czar, demanding an aristocratic 


constitution, as a sort of compensation for the losses the nobility 
had sustained by the emancipation of the serfs, gave the first im- 
pulse to an abrupt change of politics. The address was received 
very ungraciously; the ringleaders of the whole concern were 
advised to retire to their estates for some time, in order to medi- 
tate at leisure on the true nature of Russian liberalism, and the 
very first occasion was seized upon to remind the " Liberals " that 
"autocracy was a heavenly institution, and that every attempt at 
anything which might possibly resemble a constitution was in future 
to be considered as an offense against his Imperial Majesty, and 
punished according to law " — a rather uncomfortable threat, mean- 
ing death, or Siberia. 

It now became evident that a painful misunderstanding had 
prevailed all round. Like all natures endowed with a strong and 
morbid imagination, and but a weak mind and will, Alexander had 
built up his ideal of an autocratic millennium in all its slightest par- 
ticulars. By his courtiers and by some of the half -crazy idealists 
of the old Slavophile school this dream was received with unbounded 
enthusiasm. When it was shattered to pieces by the "ingratitude" 
of the people, when it became apparent that what the people were 
impudent enough to desire was liberty, and not " paternal benevo- 
lence," the Czar's disenchantment was bitter, and gave the first 
impulse to that morbid melancholy which further events developed 
in his mind to the extent of a mental malady. 

The ordinary consequences of political repression followed : the 
revolutionary movement became more intense. "Conspiracies" 
were almost daily discovered by the police. At last came the catas- 
trophe : on the 16th of April, 1866, a crazy young fanatic, almost 
a child, Karakozoff by name, fired a shot at the Emperor while the 
latter was stepping into his carriage after a walk in the Summer 
Garden. This fatal shot marked a turning point in the Czar's policy 
toward his subjects, and opened the career of a man who richly 
deserves the name of an evil genius of modern Russia, in whom 
Russian autocracy with all its decay and hypocrisy found an able, 
unscrupulous, and powerful representative. This man is the now 
celebrated Count Peter Shouvaloff, at present Russian Ambassador 
at the court of Great Britain, and the probable successor of Prince 
Gortchakoff to the office of Chancellor of the Empire. Immedi- 
ately after Karakozoff's attentat, Shouvaloff was summoned to the 
post of " Chief of the Third Section of his Majesty's Private Chan- 
cery," and the task of prosecuting the criminal and of extirpating 


tlie "revolutionary party" in Russia to the very roots was intrusted 
to him. 

Citizens of a free country are scarcely able to form an adequate 
idea of the true nature of this terrible and profoundly demoralizing 
institution. The " Third Section " is a great deal more than a secret 
police for political cases. It is in every sense the true and full ex- 
pression of the Czar's supreme power ; it is the organ and instrument 
of his personal will ; it stands accordingly above all the laws, 
the institutions, and even the civil rights of each citizen. Its 
agents are spread all over the country, exercising a secret con- 
trol over every officeholder, every provincial institution — the gov- 
ernor of the province himself not excepted, who is generally the 
first to quail before its secret power. It is clear that, so long 
as this institution exists, every law, every liberal reform, is but a 

A history of the secret doings, of all the horrors and crimes, 
perpetrated by this disgraceful institution, would fill up many 
volumes, before the contents of which the most sensational novels 
would appear tame and shallow. There is scarcely any sphere of 
public or private life which is exempted from the irresponsible con- 
trol of this inquisition of the nineteenth century. The verdict of a 
court has no value whatever for the Third Section. Not only ac- 
quitted political offenders are as a rule transported "administra- 
tively " to some distant town of the empire, but even the judges 
themselves, when they are considered to have passed too lenient a 
verdict, are liable to be forced into resigning their office and to be 
then exiled in company with the very prisoners who had stood 
before them ! 

Such is the institution at the head of which Shouvaloff was 
placed in 1866 ; such was the power given into his hands which 
made him in one year the actual master of Russia. Shouvaloff is a 
man of more than ordinary intellectual abilities, admirably suited 
for a post such as the one he occupied. Endowed with a profound 
knowledge of human nature, he understood at a glance the character 
of the Czar. He knew how to maintain the Czar in a state of per- 
petual nervous excitement by reporting almost daily about new 
conspiracies in a most distorted and exaggerated shape, leading him 
to the belief that the whole of Russia was covered by a net of a 
murderous and bloodthirsty revolutionary organization. Alexander 
lived in constant fear of assassins, and had a revolver always at 
hand. Once his aide-de-camp, Ryleeff, entering unexpectedly the 


imperial private study, the Czar sprang up in dismay and fired at 
him, happily missing his aim. 

Repressive measures against the press, the provincial elective 
assemblies (the zemstvo), the universities, and the new law courts, 
followed almost daily. A true and able disciple of that political 
adventurer jtar e.rcdle/icey Napoleon III., Shouvalojff knew how to 
deprive public life in Russia even of that phantom of liberty which 
had been awarded by the " liberal 7 Czar ; how to tear out of the 
new institutions their spirit, without touching their outward, civil- 
ized form. In the repression he exercised against every spark of 
independent sj)irit in Russian society, he artfully evaded any of- 
fense to that peculiar feeling of tact which is innate in persons of 
good breeding and high social standing : he carefully dealt with 
every case according to the social reputation and family position of 
the inculpated persons ; he could discriminate between those who 
could be struck and crushed in the most merciless and brutal man- 
ner and those toward whom forms of a chivalrous and accom- 
plished civility must be observed. 

A personal experience of mine admirably illustrates this trait in 
the character of the " Great Russian Spy," as the Londoners called 
ShouvalolT. In 1872 I was an editorial writer on the staff of a 
weekly paper at St. Petersburg. This paper still exists, and I am 
therefore compelled from obvious reasons not to name it. Through 
the literary jjosition I occupied, I naturally came into contact with 
all the stirring, turbulent, and intelligent elements of the Russian 
hohhne — students, artists, young officers of the army, teachers in 
public schools, literary men, and such like — all of whom were any- 
thing but loyal subjects of the Czar, and therefore all personce in- 
gratissimce in the eyes of the St. Hermandad. At the same time, 
in consequence of some family ties and traditions, I was intimately 
acquainted with some of the first aristocratic families of the capital, 
and had thus access to that mysterious and undefinable sphere which 
the French call '^ the world." One evening I was called upon to 
read a paper about " Socialism in Russia," before a literary society 
we had formed. In the very midst of my oratorical effort I was 
interrupted by the clash of sabers in the anteroom, and there ap- 
peared suddenly among us a man, clad in that awful blue uniform 
of the gendarmes, the executive agents of the Third Section. In 
the most civil manner possible he invited us to disperse, an invita- 
tion we of course acted upon immediately. At the door we met 
another *' blue gentleman," who took down our names and addresses, 


warning us of the consequences if any one should venture to give 
a false statement. The very same night I received a summons to 
appear the next day at two p. m. at the Third Section, or in the 
" building near the suspension bridge," as this amiable institution 
is usually called in St. Petersburg, from the locality it occupies. 
There an amiable and smooth-tongued official gave me fair warning 
that, if I should again be seized by a desire to express my opinions 
on socialism, the Government would be happy to give me the occa- 
sion for meditating further on the subject in the quiet town of 
Belozersk, and then let me go, after warning me that I had hence- 
forth to consider myself under the strictest surveillance of the 
secret police. On coming home I found to my utter amazement 
on my writing-table an envelope, adorned with the Shouvaloffs' 
crest and coat-of-arms, and containing an invitation to a great ball 
which was to take place the next day in the same building which I 
had left a few moments before a susj)ected " Nihilist " and revolu- 
tionist ! 

In such petty details of tact and urbanity Shouvaloff was always 
a master, and it is principally by such means that he succeeded in 
conciliating to his policy all such representatives of superficial 
liberalism for whom public life and liberty were not an earnest 
necessity but only a play and a fashion. At the same time he car- 
ried out a system of preventive measures all directed to one pur- 
pose — that of diverting the public mind from political interests. 
Just like his master in Machiavelianism, Napoleon, he used public 
amusements, feasts, and pageants, even if they were of more than 
doubtful morality, as a diversion for the exuberant energies of 
society. Debauchery of every kind was patronized, the imagina- 
tion of the ablest and best classes of the people was systematically 
perverted, their senses were flattered in every manner, and their 
mind and reason left as barren as possible. Liquor-shops, night 
restaurants with private parlors adorned in the most luxurious man- 
ner, low theatres specially dedicated to can-can^ where performers 
and public chiefly belonged to the lowest class of fallen women, 
and other establishments of the same or of a worse kind, enjoyed 
an active protection on the part of the police, while public lectures, 
schools, newspapers, books — in short, every function of public 
thought and opinion — were subjected to a most tyrannical control 
of half a dozen police authorities. 

The effects of this dastardly system of government were terrific, 
indeed more dangerous for the development of the nation than even 


the tyranny of a madman like Nicholas. Lying and hypocrisy be- 
came the officially recognized principles in politics, and gradually 
invaded all the spheres of })iiblie life. A generation of knaves sud- 
denly sprang up, invading all the branches of the government ser- 
vice, of the linancial and economical institutions. With resounding 
phrases about liberty, honesty, and civic duty on their lips, this 
" new generation," these beloved children of the " liberal " czardom, 
inaugurated an epoch of corruption and demoralization unprece- 
dented in the history of their country. The members of the impe- 
rial family themselves took the lead on this glorious path. The 
brothers and other relatives of the Czar were foremost in robbing 
the people, and took the lion's share of the booty. The education 
received by the i)rinces of the Romanoff family mostly stands on 
a level with that of a groom in civilized communities. Their habit- 
ual associates are the most despicable and unprincipled snobs among 
tlwjt'H/iesse doree of the capital and French court isa?ies. 

More or less all the Russian princes come up to that level. They 
pass tlieir whole life in brutal idleness, whiling away their time with 
drinking, gambling, and hunting. As far as education and knowl. 
edge is concerned, there is perhaps but one exception to this gen- 
eral rule : that is the Grand Duke Constantine Nicolajevitch, broth- 
er of the Czar, President of the Council of State, the supreme 
legislative body of the empire, and admiral-general of the Russian 
fleet. lie is a man of more than ordinary intellectual ability, well 
informed, and possessing a keen appreciation for the fine arts : his 
])alace is the constant rendezvous of artists, litterateurs, musicians, 
and singers. But, on the other hand, the Russian people have to pay 
dearly for the luxury of possessing a well-educated Romanoff : 
among the studies which Constantine has pursued with the most 
complete success, the science of bribery stands paramount. He has 
managed to discount his influence as President of the Council of 
State in the most profitable manner. Every new railway, manufac- 
turing or banking company, which applies to the Government for 
incorporation, has to pay Constantine, of course not personally, but 
through half a dozen agents and sub-agents, a handsome tribute. 
Also the accounts of many a ship-building firm might, if published, 
tell curious tales about how expensive an article a clever and edu- 
cated member of the Romanoff family actually is. 

This remark, however, does not imply that stupid and badly 
educated grand dukes prove less expensive to the country than 
clever ones. A recent example has proved the contrary ; that of 


the Grand Duke I^Ticliolas Nicolajevitcli, the commander-in-chief 
of the Russian army during the last Bulgarian campaign. The gen- 
eral opinion about that man in Russia before the war was, that he 
was a thoroughly ignorant, stupid, but honest and brave soldier. 
Recent events have proved, however, that if the former part of this 
judgment is correct the same can not be said of its latter part. The 
fact is now generally known in Russia that the Grand Duke Nicho- 
las, the brother of the Czar, the generalissimo of the army, not only 
brought this army to the verge of ruin by his utter imbecility as a 
commander, but actually robbed the miserable, hungry, dying sol- 
diers of seven million rubles, of which he gave a handsome share 
to his mistress, a former opera-dancer ! I must earnestly request 
the reader to bear in mind that this is not idle gossip : the fact has 
been officially proved and reported to the Czar by General Greigh, 
the present chief of the Russian Finance Department, who was sent 
by the Czar to Bulgaria to investigate the terrific cases of corruption 
which occurred during the war. Greigh went earnestly to work, 
and the very first result he obtained from his investigation was 
that the Czar's brother was the chief criminal. Horror-stricken, 
he started at once for St. Petersburg and reported to the Czar — 
the truth. The investigation was immediately closed, and General 
Greigh received the Finance Department as price for his silence. 

These examples, drawn from the life of two of the most promi- 
nent members of the Czar's family, will suffice to characterize the 
latter as a whole. With one or two exceptions (among these the 
Czarevitch, who, under the beneficent influence of his wife, the Dan- 
ish Princess Dagmar, has as yet held aloof from the filth surround- 
ing him), not one single prince of the Romanoff family can be 
named whose existence is not a burden to the people and a nui- 
sance to society. 

The different departments of civil service (with the exception of 
the law courts, where honest officials predominate) present an aspect 
which is in no way more pleasing than the picture I have drawn of 
the imperial family. Foremost stands the ministry of the imperial 
court, which is considered a sort of patrimony of the Adlerberg 
family. The old Count Adlerberg, a friend of Emperor Nicholas 
(the chronique scandaleuse of the Russian court has a good deal to 
say about the primary motives of this friendship), was the chief of 
this petty dynasty. His son succeeded him in office, and all the 
different departments of the ministry have been adroitly distributed 
among brothers, nephews, and cousins of the family. The chief, 


and in the eyes of the uninitiated the only, purpose for which this 
ministry exists is the payment of the Adlerberg family debts. 
Kvery four or five years some six or seven hundred thousand ru- 
bles are paid off in this way out of the public Treasury. The good 
example of the chiefs is naturally followed by the minor officials, 
and thus the Russian court has been converted into a very den of 
burglars and thieves, in which corruption and bribery is exercised 
quite openly with a sort of refreshing 7ia"ivete. 

What abyss of corruption has been disclosed in the War Depart- 
ment by the last war is too well known to need any illustration on 
my part. In all the Government offices in which money-making 
business is transacted we meet with the same system of bribery and 
venality. The party who best knows how to find the right man for 
the right price is assured of success, even if its case be as bad and 
as illegal as possible. Of course I do not wish to imply by this 
that every Russian official is a thief. In the Government offices 
hundreds of honest men are to be found, who abominate the system 
under which they are compelled to serve. But in most cases they 
are powerless. Only the drudgery work is intrusted to them ; the 
actual j>ower rests in the hands of those who are unscrupulous 
enough to acquire it at any price. Examples illustrating this fact 
are so numerous that to choose among them is extremely difficult. 
I will mention but a few names of dignitaries who are known be- 
yond the Russian frontier. 

General Mesentzoff, the victim of the recent murder, began his 
service as a penniless officer of obscure family. By a series of un- 
scrupulous nianijiulations, and base services rendered to persons of 
high standing, he obtained a position in the corps of the dreaded 
secret police, and since then identified himself entirely with all its 
darkest intrigues. By malpractice of every kind he rose gradually 
higher and higher, until he became the chief of the whole institu- 
tion, and a rich man. Trepoff, *' the honest father Trepoff," as he 
was universally called at St. Petersburg, from a penniless foundling 
educated by charity, became the absolute master of the Russian 
capital, and was on retiring from office in the undisturbed posses- 
sion of three million rubles. The same may be said of the former 
Minister of Finance, Yon Reutern, who, though an " honest Ger- 
man," has during his ministry succeeded in investing over one mil- 
lion rubles in foreign bonds, without counting the shares he pos- 
sesses in Russian enterprises of every description. 

" Tel mattre, tel valet^ says a French proverb. It is natural 


that the example set by the members of the imperial family and by 
the first dignitaries of the realm should be acted on by the subor- 
dinate agents of the Administration. And as, generally speaking, 
the higher social classes in Russia, that portion of Russian society 
which, though improperly, bears the name of aristocracy, are almost 
entirely absorbed by the Government service, the effect of such a 
state of things on public life and public morals generally may be 
easily imagined. The younger generation of Russian aristocrats 
presents a pitiful sight indeed. A cold-blooded, cynical material- 
ism, scarcely varnished over with a superficial education and ele- 
gance of manners, treating honor, devotion to principles, and politi- 
cal convictions, as so many " humbugs," unworthy of a true child 
of the nineteenth century — such is the main feature of the present 
generation of Russian aristocrats. It is perfectly astonishing in 
what measure all moral feeling has died out among them. The 
worst slander and the highest praise seem to have lost all their sig- 
nificance in the leading circles of Russian society. The social stand- 
ing of each individual is determined by a series of petty character- 
istics : his good breeding, his appearance, his wealth, sometimes his 
way of tying his cravat or putting on his gloves — all these undefin- 
able nonentities which, put together, form the outward shape of a 
jeiine homme com'ine il faut. From such things as these depends 
what in St. Petersburg one is pleased to call a reputation. The 
rest is of secondary importance. A man may be a gambler, a 
swindler, or worse — if he is but endowed with that peculiar varnish 
of genteelness and savoir vivre which society requires from him, he 
is welcome everywhere all the same. 

One brilliant " swell," the favorite of the ladies, the leader of all 
the cotillions, owes his fortune, his social and administrative career, 
to the good graces of a lady friend, who happens to be at the same 
time the friend of a rich and powerful statesman. Another has 
been repeatedly caught cheating at cards, but, as he is indirectly 
related to a member of the imperial family, one gladly overlooks 
his *' little peculiarities." There exists in St. Petersburg a whole 
set of the most fashionable and fast young men in society — officers 
of the guards, sons of old princely families, aide-de-camps of grand 
dukes and of the highest dignitaries of the Russian army — who, 
not being rich enough to pay for the life they are leading, contrive 
to discount their social position most dexterously by serving in a 
certain sense as living advertisements for commercial establish- 
ments, restaurants, horse-dealers, and such like, all of whom they 



never pay, remunerating them indirectly by bringing them into 
" fashion." Among the business establishments thus enjoying the 
young aristocrats' protection the boudoirs of the demi-monde natu- 
rally occupy a prominent position. Such facts are perfectly well 
known to everybody, and do not impair in the least the social posi- 
tion of such men. On the contrary, they are the envied and ad- 
mired models of fashion and good breeding ; for them every door, 
from the gates of the imperial palace to the back door of a French 
variety singer's apartment, is opened far and wide ; they are the 
future dignitaries of the empire ; a brilliant career is opening before 
them I 

Around this rotten, glittering "aristocracy" a whole swarm of 
speculators, swindlers, money-lenders, business men of every de- 
scription, clusters, who, like dogs, feed from the crumbs falling 
from their master's table, and carry corruption, and decay even 
into the middle classes of society. 

This is one side of the picture. Such are the " leading classes " 
of Russian society, as the " holy czardom " has shaped them. And 
the people ? And those seventy millions of unknown, unheard-of 
human creatures who are strewed on the endless expanse of land 
))etween the l^aciiic Ocean and the Niemen, the White and the 
Black Seas ? 

There, all around, as Nekrassoff, the great poet of the woes and 
vices of modern Russia, sings — there, " in the depth of Russia, eter- 
nal stillness reigns ! " — " Eternal stillness" over the fields on which, 
bending over his plow, the peasant toils from dawn to nightfall ; 
"eternal stillness" in those dark, dreary, dilapidated villages with 
their black, smoky huts looking more like kennels than like human 
abodes ; " eternal stillness " in the soul of that great, heroic nation, 
which with its hands' unrequited toil, with its hearts' blood, has 
made Russia what it now is, reaping for its reward but misery, ig- 
norance, injustice of every kind ; " eternal stillness" in the heart of 
that nation which still lies prostrate before its Czars, before the real 
and only origin of all its misery ! 

Such is the true picture of that " dark realm " the brilliant sur- 
face of which is mostly alone seen by foreign observers. And yet, 
disconsolate as this picture may appear, it is far from being hopeless. 
It would be so if the corruption and demoralization of the upper 
classes and of the Government pervaded the whole body of the na- 
tion, and did not arouse any indignation nor any active opposition 
on the part of the honest elements of the people. But such is not 


the case. An opposition exists and it grows daily in strength and 
numbers, gathering around its banner all the stout hearts and hon- 
est minds of the nation. 

Those are not rightly informed who think that the revolutionary 
movement now going on in Russia is the work of one party or of 
a secret society of any kind. It is the work of all intelligent Rus- 
sian citizens, to whatever class of society they may belong, who are 
tired of the yoke Russia has borne for so many centuries, and who 
consider political liberty and the downfall of autocracy the necessary 
condition of all further progress of the Russian people. The name 
of this party, if it still may be called a party, is — legion. It is every- 
where and nowhere. Representatives of the noblest families of the 
empire, professional men of every description, government officials 
and even priests, school-teachers, and army officers — all are to be 
found in the ranks of this great " army of the Discontented." The 
powerful machinery of Russian bureaucracy has long ago been un- 
dermined by this spirit of discontent, and it is now little more than 
a sham weapon in the hands of the Czar. He himself in his Winter 
Palace is surrounded either by cowards who mil forsake him, as 
soon as their personal interest will no more depend on the mainte- 
nance of his power, or by secret converts to the great liberal move- 
ment who will gladly contribute to the overthrow of that same re-: 
gime they are ostensibly serving. 

Thus, from the present state of Russian society we may venture 
to predict with a considerable amount of probability that the Rus- 
sian czardom will soon sink beneath the weight of its own decrepi- 
tude and of the merciless logic of history. Then, and only then, the 
true national life of Russia will begin; the vital forces of the nation 
will be enabled to act freely, and the scum of Russian society, which 
now holds the supreme power in its hands, will be wiped away from 
the surface of political events. 

A Russian Nihilist. 



The ficientific work of this preliminary expedition was intrusted 
to the writer as meteorologist and to Mr. Lud>vig Kumlien as nat- 
uralist. We were both young, of strong ph^/siquej and full of zeal 
for the work. 

Professor Loomis, of Yale, and Professor Abbe, of Washing- 
ton, prepared the meteorological instructions, and Professor Baird, 
of the Smithsonian, those for the naturalist. These instructions 
were followed as closely as the circumstances of the situation and 
the outfit permitted. 

It is dithcult for a single observer to carry on a system of hourly 
observations in meteorology day and night for a whole year, even 
in a comfortable observatory in lower latitudes, and very much 
more difficult within the Arctic and the restricted limits of a small 
schooner. The same difficulties attend the naturalist, whose obser- 
vations on land are limited to a few weeks of summer, in which 55° 
Fahr. marks the maximum of heat (in June), and with an average 
temperature of not over 37° Fahr., and who does not see the sur- 
face of the earth free from snow for even those few weeks. 

Mr. Kumlien's collections in entomology comprise four or five 
species of butterfiies or moths, a few beetles, mosquitoes, and house- 
flies ; and of birds perhaps forty species, chiefly aquatic. It was 
among the quadrupeds and marine vertebrata that he found his 
chief reward, and in this field he was greatly assisted by the re- 
markable sagacity of the native Esquimaux, whose senses, by long 
training, enable them to detect the spoors of animals and other 


indications of their presence in those snow-clad regions, which the 
hunter from lower latitudes would disregard. 

With better equipment and a more numerous staff, the explo- 
ration of Kennedy Lake — a large body of fresh water, near which 
the Florence wintered — might have been undertaken. This lake is 
almost wholly unknown to science, and there is no doubt that it will 
yield. rich results to the future explorer. 

On account of the limited space and equipment of the Florence, 
many physical phenomena were of necessity unobserved, such as 
the polarization of the atmosphere, the spectra of the aurora, the 
actinic force of the sun's rays during the long reign of the " mid- 
night sun," etc., etc. All these and other problems, physical, chemi- 
cal, vital, astronomical, and meteorological, must be considered and 
provided for in the complete outfit of the proposed Arctic colony 
on the shore of Lady Franklin's Bay. Many of these problems can 
never be so well solved as by a thoroughly equipped party resident 
for a sufficient time within the Arctic as contemplated in the coloni- 
zation plan. 

The following brief abstract will show what was accomplished 
by the meteorologist. The position of the observatory was deter- 
mined by the averages of sextant observations made on April 12 
and May 24, 1878, as being in latitude 66° 13' 45" north, longitude 
67° 18' 39" west. 

This is the position of Annanatook, the Esquimau name of a col- 
lection of small islands on the western coast of Cumberland Gulf, 
where the Florence wintered. This determination of position dif- 
fers from that given on published maps. But those who are ac- 
quainted with the gulf — as the whalers, for example — say the map 
is incorrect. There is no record of any other observations for 
this station except those by the writer. On the northeast of these 
islands rises a range of high, snow-capped hills ; the western hori- 
zon is bounded by a chain of low hills ; southeast is open water ; 
and northwest, as far as the eye can reach, are seen only small, 
rocky islands dotting the surface of the sea. The surface of the 
Annanatook Islands is naked rock, save only in the valleys and 
rocky crevices, where a little soil has gathered, and a few grasses, 
flowering plants, and mosses grow. Dwarf willows, resembling 
blackberry-vines, run along the ground, and diminutive beeches lie 
hidden, buried in the moss, while the rocks are covered with 

The highest hill at Annanatook, by barometer, measured only 



two hundred and ninety-nine feet in height, two others being one 
hundred and ninety-eight and eighty-four feet respectively. But 
on the eastern mainland one hill, by no means the highest, measured 
fourteen hundred and sixty-six feet, an elevation corresponding 
very closely to the snow-line in summer at this point. Patches 
of snow were observed at this elevation on other hills behind the 
one here measured rising to the estimated elevation of from two to 
three thousand feet. 

Jiarometer. — The monthly averages of the barometer at Annan- 
atook show a gradual increase of the atmospheric pressure from 
December, when it is at minimum, until May and June, when it 
is the greatest. It then falls pretty uniformly to its initial point in 
December and January, as will be seen by comparing the means in 
the following condensed table. The lowest pressure observed was 
28-89 in December, and the highest recorded was 30*47 inches, a 
difference of 158 inch. 

The mean hourly difference was only '005 inch ; the greatest 
was June 9th, '025 inch. 

Northwest winds accompanied the highest and southerly winds 
the lowest barometer. 

Tabu of Barometric Means observed at Annanaiook for the Several Months of 18*78, 
corrected for TempercUure. — 0. T. Sherman, Observer. 



March . . . 
April . . . ., 




August.. . 
October. . 


29 770 

4p. x. 



11 p. M. 





Temperature. — It is often remarked that it is the extremes of 
temperature rather than its averages which decide the character of 
a climate. It is undoubtedly true that extremes are the limiting 
conditions of distribution of species if not of life in both animals 
and plants, but especially in the latter. At Annanatook we were 
too far south to meet the extreme of Arctic cold, the lowest tem- 
voL. cxxviii. — ]N^o. 267. 13 



perature observed being — 52*5° by the ship's thermometer, and 
— 49 '5° by the station thermometer on shore in January. But in 
the same month the temperature rose to 21*5° Fahr. Sudden 
changes of temperature occur in these high latitudes as well as in 
lower : for example, on the 5th of May there was a rise in the ther- 
mometer of 11° F. in an hour, and encouraged perhaps by such a 
promise of warm weather a fly was found on the ice on the 8th of 
the same month, and by the 24th of May crowsfoot was in bud. 
Yet in May the temperature fell to — 8° Fahr. How relative our 
notions of temperature are is evident from the fact that in Disco 
Bay the ladies of the Danish officers, resident there, find use for 
their parasols against the fervid heat when the thermometer reads 
35° to 40° Fahr. ! On the day in January when we had the lowest 
temperature, coming on board the Florence I was met by the cabin- 
boy, bareheaded on deck, rejoicing in the fine warm day, which he 
guessed might be about 4- 10°. It was by record — 49*5 ! This 
confirms Dr. Kane's statement that they felt oppressed by heat 
when the temperature rose from — 60° to zero. We print a con- 
densed tabular statement of the highest, lowest, and mean tempera- 
tures observed at Annanatook : 





— 17-6 

- 18-0 

- is-Y 







February. . 






-49 5 

— 14-0 

- 8-0 


August. . . 
i September 
October. . . 





- 10-0 

— 41-0 





- 11-8 

Thus it appears that in seven months of the year the tempera- 
ture fell below zero, and for four months the mean was under — 
10°. In the three summer months alone is the mean above freez- 
ing, the maximum summer temperature (55*3°) being in June 
(August having no record). 

A limited number of observations only were made with the 
black-bulbed thermometer showing the effect of absorption of solar 
radiation. The results are presented in the following table : 


Table xhovnng the iJiffcrence of Temperature due to Absorption of Solar Heat by a 
Thertnonieter-Bulb blackened with India Ink and protected from Wind^ at Anna- 


January 31. 
February 1. 


" 2. 









Mean time. 

Black bulb. 


- 13° 



- 10 



- 15 



- 23 



- 10-5 



- 12-8 

1 12 


— 90 

! 1 


- 10-0 



+ 46 



4- 36 



+ 26 



+ 30 



+ 40 



+ 40 



+ 27 

































The differences noted in these observations are remarkable, and 
render tlie multiplication of similar observations hereafter very de- 
sirable with an instrument properly constructed for the purpose. 

Temperature of the Human Body. — A few observations appear 
to show that the normal temperature of the human body, 98*4° Fahr., 
is very slightly if at all changed by the climate. Thus, February 
28th the temperature of two of the corps was respectively 98*2° and 
98'4°. March 4th, a native was 98*4°. "This fellow has come 
this morning on a sledge-ride, and has been working in the snow, 
building a house, at a temperature of — 25° Fahr." Three Es- 
quimau children, March 8th, had a temperature of 98-4°, and a 
man 98*4°. It is desii*able that these observations should be ex- 
tended. The blood is known to become abnormally heated by 
intense summer weather, rising even to 99*7°, and by prolonged 
exposure to cold baths the human body has been cooled with safety 
to 88° Fahr., but not lower, showing an extreme range of ob- 
served temperature of 11-7° Fahr.* 

Sea - Water Temperature. — The surface - water at Annanatook 
was in January, 28*2° ; February, at surface, 29° ; at 18 feet depth, 
29-l°-29-3° ; in May, 29° at surface, 29-5° at 18 feet depth ; in 
June, 31-8° at surface, and 31-1° at 18 feet depth ; in July, 38*2° 
at surface, and 22*4° at 18 feet depth ; these are means. 

* Dr. B. F. Craig, " Variations in the Temperature of the Human Body," "Ameri- 
can Journal of Science" (3), ii., 330. 



In September the surface in the early days of the month was 
37° ; in the latter days, 33° ; and for the mean, 35°. In October 
it was 30-01° ; in November, 28-8° ; and in December, 27-8°. The 
highest temperature observed in the sea, at Annanatook, was 39*4°, 
and the lowest, 26*7°. At Disco, in August, the surface of the sea 
was 44*1°. 

Day and Night. — There are two circumstances influencing the 
Arctic night by way of compensation, not often mentioned, namely, 
the great length of the twilight, and the power of the moon to tem- 
per the darkness. During winter the moon has her highest north 
declination, and remains above the horizon for some days continu- 
ously, giving light enough for the traveler, and greatly alleviating 
the gloom of this oppressive season. All Arctic travelers agree in 
the depressing effect of the darkness. Work at other times pleasant 
then becomes most irksome. As showing the approach and depart- 
ure of night, it is noted in my journal : 

" November 7th. — Observation at four taken by lamplight." 

" March IJf-th. — The first day we were inconvenienced by the 
glare of the sun's reflected light." 

" April 26th. — Read common pica type with ease at midnight." 

Table of Mean Length of Bay and Nighty and of Twilight, at AnnanatooJc. 





h. m. 

h. m. 

h. m. 

October 16... 

9 28 

8 24 

6 8 

November 16. 

5 44 

11 28 

6 48 

December 16. 

2 32 

12 56 

8 32 

January 16. . . 

4 37 

12 01 

1 22 

February 16.. 

8 14 

9 36 

6 10 

March 16 

11 48 

5 58 

6 14 


April 16 

May 16 

June 16 

July 16 

August 16. . . . 
September 16, 



h. m. 

h. m. 

15 56 

21 16 


24 00 

21 02 

16 48 

13 00 

3 20 


h. m. 
8 4 
2 44 

2 68 

T 12 
Y 40 

Aurora. — The aurora is emphatically a polar phenomenon, and 
all who have wintered in these boreal regions dwell on the wonders 
of this polar light. 

The records show that one hundred auroral exhibitions were ob- 
served at Annanatook from November, 1877, to August, 1878, dis- 
tributed as follows, viz. : twenty in January, sixteen in February, 
twelve in March, seventeen in April, and two in May. After the first 
few days of May it was too light to observe the aurora, and so 
continued until the close of August, when two were observed — in 
November ten, and in December twenty-one. 

The most brilliant auroras were seen in January and April. 


The colors observed were usually pale blue, sometimes very pale 
green, rarely straw yellow, and once only, rose, at the base. The 
light from the aurora was sufficient to guide the traveler in his 
path. Twice I recovered my lost way by its aid, and once its bril- 
liancy was sufficient to cast a glare on the water like that of the 
moon. It occasionally affected the ordinary compass-needle, as on 
the 29th of August when the ship's compass could not be used 
while the auroral display lasted. Doubtless if our magnetic instru- 
ments had been more complete we would have observed more fre- 
quent magnetic disturbances. The number of auroras observed is 
larger than could have been expected at this position. The usual 
appearance of the polar light as seen at Annanatook is as follows : 
<^)n the approach of evening after a clear day, a dim, haze -like 
])ank appeared along the south-southeast horizon, above which 
could be detected a faint line of bluisli light. About nine o'clock 
this line began to show some motion, the signal of the grand display 
which rapidly followed. Arches two or three degrees in breadth 
commenced to shoot upward toward the zenith, following each 
other in rapid succession, to the number usually of two or three, 
the highest number observed being six or eight. Sometimes only 
one arch was seen. The night of January 10th furnished the fol- 
lowing record : About 4 a. m. the arches which had remained 
in quiet glow, without motion for some time, darted up to the 
zenith, arch after arch following, until at 5.30 there were eight 
arches in sight. Each of these sprang from one original arch, 
advancing rather rapidly toward the zenith. After reaching a 
point a little to the south and east of the zenith each arch halted. 
Here live of the arches rested, forming one bright nucleus at the 
junction, the lower portions of the arch extending beyond and 
seemingly bending it concave toward the north. The zenith mean- 
time remained fixed, as also the base of the arches. Now, on the 
approach or development of each new arch the others break into 
streamers, all passing through the bright nucleus already named. 
Of the three remaining, two are indistinct, to the south and east, 
and the third has passed the zenith and to the north in a line run- 
ning through Capella and Gemini, remaining here as a row of 
streamers. These gradually fade out, and at 6 (a. m.) only one 
arch is left in the zenith, moving slowly southward, to be soon 
blended in the advancing dawn. 

On the 2d of March, during a fall of snow, one of the clouds 
was overspread with a faint-yellow light, which later developed, or 


continued, into an aurora. At other times the margins of clouds 
are seen lined by a faint-white light, and the activity of the com- 
pass indicated the presence of an aurora. 

They have in Greenland comparatively few auroras, so that the 
European inhabitants at Disco seemed incredulous as to the reports 
of the constant recurrence of this phenomenon in other parts of 
the Arctic. The number recorded at Annanatook is exceptionally 

Halo. — One conspicuous halo was observed on the 19th of Jan- 
uary. It consisted of a circle of 22° radius with two extraordinary 
arcs beyond. Through the sun ran a circle of 40° radius, which ap- 
peared to rest horizontally. There were no mock moons at that 
time ; but on the 24th of February there was a halo with mock 

Snow. — The fresh-fallen snow (December 24th) crackles under 
foot like glass beads or " dry oats hanging on the stalk." On the 1st 
of January the snow fell like spiculae of ice, hardly noticeable save 
as it gathered on one's clothes and other objects. 

The temperature of the snow at surface and below the surface 
was taken on two occasions with interesting results. Thus, Decem- 
ber 25th, the surface of the snow being — 20°, at one foot below 
it was — 7'5° ; at two feet, — 3° ; at three feet, — 1° ; at four feet, 
-H3°; at five feet, +10°. 

January 5th the same observations gave, at one foot below the 
surface, — 15° ; at two feet under, — 9*5° ; at three feet, +0*5° ; at 
four feet, -f 9° ; and at five feet, +10°. 

These observations explain the comparative comfort of the na- 
tive snow-houses with walls five feet thick. The precipitation for 
January was 0*5 inch of water ; for February, 0*49 ; for March, 
0-5; for April, 077; for May, 1*18; for June, 1-85; for July, 
4*18 ; for August, — ; for September, 8'88 ; for October, 1'07 ; 
for November, 1*04 ; for December, 0*98 — total (less August), 21*44, 
or, for the twelve months, about 28 inches, probably, estimating Au- 
gust as a mean between July and September. 

Ice — Freezing of the Sea. — October 9th, ice appeared in the fiord. 
October 12th, crystals of ice came up with the deep-sea thermome- 
ter. October 29th, ice is reported in the lower gulf. November 
10th, new ice formed in the harbor, and afforded passage to the 
ship. November 27th, the ice in the harbor would hardly bear pass- 
ing. May 10th, the ice at the schooner was very rotten, and quickly 


broken through by a cask thrown overboard. May 19th, the ice 
decayed very rapidly. May 28th, the Esquimaux hunters report the 
ice as very treacherous. June 4-5th, on the breaking up of the 
shore ice the passage to the ship became hardly passable. June 8th, 
the ice near the ship, eight inches thick two days since, would not 
bear a man's weisrht. June 9th, ice formed on the salt water near 
the edges of the firm ice — probably fresh-water ice from regela- 

Winds. — Happily during the winter months the winds are very 
light in the Arctic. A much less degree of cold would become in- 
tolerable with a high wind. The change from a westerly to a south- 
erly wind produces a marked change in the atmosphere, and be- 
comes most depressing to those exposed to its influence. The year's 
observations on the wind are condensed in the following 

Wind Table. 


January . 
Fehniary . 
March. . . . 





August. . . 
October.. . 


nouBLY vELOcrrr. 

8 A.M. 

5 p. M. 











6 4 








• • • • 








• ■ • • 



• • • • 













Highest velocity 
per month. 

36'3 miles. 

241 " 

48-0 " 

35-7 " 

26-9 " 

33-9 " 

25-0 " 

35*0 " 

29-5 " 

42-8 " 

31-8 " 

Clouds. — Taking the mean of the year, about 68 parts in the 100 
of the sky at this station were overcast. November, December, and 
January were the least cloudy months ; from May to October was 
the period of cloud, and in September was the maximum, 89 parts 
in 100 of the sky being overcast. The stratus was by far the most 
common cloud. It was found difficult to distinguish between the 
stratus and the cirro-stratus. The cirrus was unlike the form so dis- 
tinguished in our latitudes. In place of the so-called " mares' tails " 
the cirrus clouds of the Arctic seemed to repose on beds inclined to 
the horizon at an angle of about 40-55° from southeast to 120° north- 
west, the impression on the mind of the observer being that the cloud- 
mass thus stratified always moved from some westerly point. Out 



of forty-two recorded cases the movement in only two instances was 
from an easterly point, and one of these is doubtful. The Esquimaux 
say that high clouds moving from the east indicate fair weather. 
Many facts go to show the sagacity of these people with regard to 
natural phenomena. 

The cumulus or " thunder-head," so common as a summer cloud 
in lower latitudes, was not observed. Cumulo-strata do occur, how- 
ever, as has been noticed by another voyager. 

Table of the Amount of Cloudiness observed at Ammnatook, 


March. . . 
April . . . 


June .... 
















5 f» 

















August. . . 
October.. . 








3 7 







11. Mean. 


5 9 









The average cloudiness of the year in New England is about 53 
parts in 100, while for Great Britain it rises to 3%, or a little more 
than the average within the Arctic at this station. 

Other Observations. — Systematic observations were also con- 
ducted, as far as circumstances permitted, on several other lines of 
investigation, such as determination of the density of sea-water by 
the balance, upon ocean currents, on sediments obtained from melted 
snow and ice, upon tides, etc., etc. 

The tidal records, when reduced, will, it is believed, give valu- 
able data for comparison with the work of other observers in this 
line, no observations in this part of the Arctic having been hitherto 
made. The rise and fall of the spring tide at Annanatook was 
twenty-four feet and six inches ; of the neap tide, seven feet. Es- 
tablishment 4^ 52", and the age of the tide 54^ 8*". From January 
13th to April 26th the record is nearly complete, and for forty con- 
secutive days, ending in April, it was uninterrupted. The writer 
desires to acknowledge here the valuable assistance rendered him 
in the preparation of this article by Professor B. Silliman, of Yale 

Obeay Taft Sherman. 



We do not believe that the American pulpit is fairly chargeable 
with sensationalism. If, indeed, we were content to take our im- 
pressions from the general character of most of the sermons which 
our daily papers think it worth their while to report, or from some 
of the ad-captandum advertisements which appear weekly under 
the heading of " Religious Notices," we might be led to an opposite 
conclusion. But it must not be forgotten that the daily papers are 
wetrspapers. When, therefore, they report sermons, it is not so 
much for their excellence as for that in them which brings them 
under the head of news. If the preacher be a distinguished stranger, 
they will faithfully reproduce his utterances, that all their readers 
may know what manner of man he is. But equally, if any stated 
pastor has done or said anything out of the common, they will be 
sure to chronicle his eccentricity. That which they are after is the 
unusual, and if a minister has said something daring in its defiance 
of all good taste, or something that smacks of heresy, or something 
that will be shocking to the feelings of the better portion of the 
community, then for. that very reason his words will be faithfully 
recorded. There are, it may be, in these two cities, some six or 
seven hundred Protestant places of worship, in each of which week- 
ly sermons are delivered, and it would be monstrously unjust to 
judge of the character of those which are unreported from that of 
those specimens which are given to the public just because of their 
deviating in some respect from the general standard. We do not 
wonder that readers at a distance should fall into the mistake of 
supposing that all our clergymen are of the same class as those 
whom the daily press has made notorious ; but it is due to the 
Christian community to make it clear that in this case the unre- 
ported are overwhelmingly in the majority, and that they are uure- 


ported not for lack of excellence so much as for lack of peculiarity 
in their ministrations. In our own immediate locality you may 
number all who by any correct use of the words can be called 
" sensational preachers " on the fingers of both hands ; while hun- 
dreds of others are seeking with quiet earnestness " to commend 
the truth to every man's conscience in the sight of God." And 
what is true here is, in the main, true also over the whole country. 
It is not to be supposed, therefore, that by writing on this subject 
we mean to insinuate that sensationalism is a common pulpit vice, or 
that American preachers are sinners above all others in regard to it. 

In fact, much as we dislike sensationalism, and greatly as we 
deplore the evils to which it leads, we are far from believing that 
it is either the only or the chief danger of the pulpit in these days. 
We have more fear, on the one hand, of that heartless intellectual- 
ism which, by its uniform appeals to the head, develops a cold mod- 
eratism that leads at length to a positive unbelief ; and, on the other, 
of that tepid sentimentalism which, in its method of proclaiming 
that " God is love," wipes out all moral distinctions and drugs con- 
science into sleep. On each of the three sides of our nature, the 
intellectual, the moral, and the sensational, the preacher is in danger 
of yielding to that which it is his proper function to seek to correct 
and control ; and, in proportion as the moral and intellectual are 
superior to the sensational, the peril in regard to the former is more 
serious than it is in regard to the latter. 

Biit, while not ignoring the others, our present business is with 
the sensational, and it will contribute to clearness if we here attempt 
a definition of that which we propose to treat. So soon, however, 
as we try to formulate that vague conception which we have of the 
thing, by putting it into words, we encounter difficulty. For it is 
immediately discovered that a certain kind and degree of the sen- 
sational enter into all eloquence. The orator, whether in the 
pulpit, or at the bar, or in the senate, seeks to persuade. But in 
pursuing that main design he uses certain tributaries, all of which 
are made by him to run into the swelling current of his speech. 
He employs ridicule to expose the absurdity of his antagonist's 
position ; he uses pathos to enforce the appeal which he makes for 
the consideration of the weak ; he turns imagination to account, by 
a harrowing description of the sufferings of those for whom he is 
pleading : and at length, by the united force of these influences, he 
carries his position and secures the consent of his audience to the 
course which he has been advocating. While he was dealing in 


ridicule, his hearers laughed, and that was a sensation. When he 
was pathetic, the tears coursed down their cheeks, and that was a 
sensation. When he set the miseries of the suffering plainly before 
their eyes, they shuddered, and that was a sensation. Are we, then, 
to condemn all this ? And, if we do, must not our censure lie 
against every triumph that the orator has won? Plainly, there- 
fore, we must admit that the production of a sensation is not, in 
itself, an evil thing in eloquence, and can not be regarded as that 
which we designate sensationalism. The mischief lies in the promi- 
nence given to the sensation as an end in and of itself ; and in the 
nature of the sensation as being out of harmony with the great pur- 
pose which every preacher of the gospel ought to have in view, and 
with the associations of the place in which his discourse is given. 
Much that would be proper enough on the platform, or at the bar, 
or in the senate, would be sensational in the pulpit, because there 
are certain restraints around the house of God, and the treatment 
of sacred subjects, the mere passing of which would be a shock to 
all reverent worshipers, and would tend to keep them from being 
suitably impressed by what is otherwise excellent. And, in every 
instance, the making of the production of an incidental and sec- 
ondary effect a deliberate object must be pronounced objectionable. 
This, like the seeking of wealth, or the pursuit of pleasure, or the 
gratification of taste, for their own sakes, is more than an infelicity. 
It is the violation of an ethical principle. It is an immorality in 
rhetoric, and in the end it loses that which it desires, while the 
pursuit exposes him who enters on it to many perils. It might be 
too much perhaps to say that, like the determination to be rich at 
all hazards, it leads to evils " which drown men in destruction and 
perdition " ; but it is undoubtedly true that they who will practice 
it do "fall into temptation and a snare." 

These distinctions, as important as they .are simple, will prepare 
us for defining sensationalism in the pulpit as the deliberate pro- 
duction by the preacher of an immediate effect which is not subor- 
dinated to the great purpose of his office, and is out of harmony 
with the sacred associations of the house of God. It is differentiated 
by the character of the effect, and the intention of the speaker to 
produce it. The sensationalist aims at an immediate result, and 
loses sight of the great permanent object which the minister of 
Christ should have in view. Instead of seeking to " present every 
man perfect in Christ Jesus," he desires instant appreciation of his 
own performance. He sets a trap for the applause of his audience, 


and when that comes lie has his reward. He does not seek to per- 
suade, but to please, or to exhilarate, or to startle, or to excite, and 
so descends from the lofty position of the sacred orator to the low- 
er level of the actor. He is not forbidden to do any of these things, 
provided they be not in themselves irreverent or ridiculous, and 
provided also they be made by him conducive to the highest in- 
terests of his hearers. But he rests in the doing of them as itself 
his success. Every true minister feels, as Chalmers has so eloquent- 
ly illustrated in his sermon on " The Slender Influence of Taste in 
Matters of Religion," that his hearers are in danger of mistaking 
their appreciation of " the loveliness of the song " for their submis- 
sion to the truth which it expresses. But that which is an inciden- 
tal peril even to the sincerest preacher is made by the sensationalist 
the deliberate object which he seeks to gain. It is to him, above 
all things, indispensable that his " effort " be enjoyed, and the ulti- 
mate issues are of small importance. 

We have said all this is his deliberate purpose. There are men, 
who are unconsciously carried away by the vividness of their im- 
aginations, or their natural dramatic power to say things which pro- 
duce what might be described as sensational effects, and yet it 
would be unfair to call them sensationalists. Thus when White- 
field, in depicting the danger of the blind man, did it so graphi- 
cally that even the cold and phlegmatic Chesterfield was com- 
pelled to relieve his feelings by crying out, " Good God ! he is 
gone " — that was undoubtedly a sensational effect ; but it does not 
follow that Whitefield was a sensationalist. The truth rather is 
that, in that case, he had a sensational hearer, who came not to 
be benefited by the discourse, but to enjoy the eloquence of the 
speaker. It is, of course, possible for one unconsciously to overdo 
that which is in itself perfectly legitimate, and every true preach- 
er, who has any adequate conception of the sanctity of what 
Spencer used to call '' that awful place the pulpit," will seek to 
curb everything that would savor of a mere performance. But, 
in fairness to every speaker, his motive must be allowed here, as 
in other cases, to give its character to his action. When the an- 
niversary orator at Bunker Hill, seeing the last survivor of the 
Revolutionary fight rising in the midst of his address, thus apos- 
trophized him, " Sit down, venerable man ! it is for us, the de- 
scendants of that generation, to stand up before you ! " he did a 
thing which, if it had been spontaneous, would have been truly as 
eloquent as it was appropriate ; but, when the ancient warrior was 


heard muttering to himself, " What does the man mean ? Why, he 
told me to get up at that part of his speech," it was discovered that 
it was all a trick which he had devised for the production of a fac- 
titious effect, and that stamped it as sensational. So when subjects 
are announced beforehand of such a character as the following : 
" A Man getting out of a Ship " ; " How Jonah lost his Umbrel- 
la"; "The Speckled Bird"; "A Little Man up a Tree"; "The 
Run-away Knock," we can not but recognize in such advertisements 
so many deliberate baits to catch a crowd, and it is impossible that 
the sermons should not be constructed with a view to pander to the 
multitudes when they came. All this is beginning at the wrong 
end, and is a mistaking of the expectation of curious hearers for 
that genuine acceptance which sooner or later always follows excel- 
lence. But it is worse — it is a deliberate letting down of the great 
aim of the Christian ministry, and makes the gathering of a large 
assemblage the primary object of the preacher ; while the spiritual 
instruction of the people is treated as secondary and subordinate. 
We do not find fault with advertising the services. On the con- 
trary, it might be very useful if the churches would combine to 
furnish every Saturday morning, in the columns of the daily papers, 
a complete directory of the places of worship in the city, with their 
locations distinctly defined, and the hours of service carefully noted. 
There would be no harm either in adding to each the pastor's name. 
But this hunting for taking sermonic titles, much as the author of a 
new romance cudgels his brain for a fancy name to it, is out of all 
taste ; and we are glad to see that it is becoming less common 
among us than it was a year or two ago. It always seems to us to 
be a Hag of distress, which indicates that it is with the utmost dif- 
ficulty that things can be kept afloat ; and those who indulge in it 
are apt to enter into a rivalry with each other as to which shall out- 
do his neighbor. Thus the subjects are chosen, not because the 
minister feels that there is something existing among his hearers 
that he can not keep silence about, or because there is something in 
his own heart which is as " a burning fire shut up in his bones " 
which he is weary with forbearing and he can not stay, but because 
he wishes to outrival others who have gone into the same line with 
himself. It is reported of Robert Hall that he declined attending 
what were called " association meetings," at which, in the course of 
the exercises, several ministers officiated before each other, saying, 
" What is it, sir, but preaching for a hat ? " but sometimes, as we 
have glanced down the column of religious advertisements (so 


called), we have thought that the brethren have been advertising 
for a hat ; and occasionally we have been reminded of the story 
Lockhart tells concerning the minister of Lilliesleaf, who, on being 
complimented by the father of Sir Walter Scott on having main- 
tained his popularity as a preacher for two generations, made reply : 
" Indeed, I sometimes think it's vera surprising. There's aye a talk 
of this or that wonderfully gifted young man fresh f rae the col- 
lege ; but, when I'm to be at the same occasion with any o' them, I 
e'en mount the white horse o' the Revelation, and he dings them 
a' ! " Alas, there it is ! the object is not to save souls, but to dis- 
tance all competitors in the race for popularity ; and notoriety is 
supposed to be the precursor of usefulness. It is a poor thing at the 
best, but even at its best it is an effect and not a cause. The gar- 
dener never concerns himself about the fragrance of his flower, but 
he seeks to make the flower itself the best of its kind, knowing that 
then the perfume will take care of itself. So let the minister strive 
to secure the great end of preaching in the salvation of men, and 
never trouble himself about the popular recognition of his work, 
for that will always come where it is deserved. The crowd that 
comes for an advertisement will go for a more attractive subject ; 
but they who are drawn to a ministry because they are spiritually 
fed by it will be seldom absent from their places, and will frequently 
bring others with them. 

But sensationalism connects itself with the character of the 
effect produced as well as with the intention of the preacher to pro- 
duce it. Everything shocking from its irreverence, or merely start- 
ling in its character, which is out of harmony with the great design 
of a discourse, and tends to detain attention upon itself to the ex- 
clusion of that which ought to have been, and which, perhaps, in 
other portions of his address really was the main purpose of the 
preacher, must be accounted blameworthy. Thus, to take an illus- 
tration from one of the grandest works of the great dramatist him- 
self, it is impossible to acquit even Shakespeare from the charge of 
sensationalism for the introduction of the grave-digging scene into 
"Hamlet." It is out of harmony with the great purpose of the 
production, which is to show how 

.... the native hue of resolution 
Is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought, 

and brooding reflection lays an arrest on action. It is, besides, har- 
rowing in its suggestions ; and the ill-timed mirth of the sexton is 


not atoned for even by the moralizings of the hero ; while the 
presence of the ghastly skull produces a physical hoiTor that does 
not help, but hinder, the spiritual effect of the whole. We can 
not read the tragedy without feeling that the teaching of the story 
is marred by the introduction of an entirely extraneous and repul- 
sive thing ; and that, however true to nature the representation is, 
it is a dead fly in a very noble pot of ointment. In the estimation 
of many doubtless it will be the best-remembered part of the poem, 
and multitudes who have no glimmering of an idea of the lesson 
which the author meant to teach in it, or who have been unmoved 
by the noble passages in which it abounds, will greatly enjoy the 
witticisms of the men at their hardening work. Now, some ser- 
mons, otherwise excellent, are marred by similar incongruity. There 
is something in them which does not lie in the line of the design 
which they profess to have in view, but which has been brought in 
because of the shock which its presence there will give. Who does 
not know that the zest with which some preachers are listened to 
springs not so much from the things said by them as from the fact 
that such things are said in a church, in defiance of the sanctity of 
the associations with which such a place is connected ? The same 
expressions coming from men in other circumstances would provoke 
no remark, but in a church they show that the preacher has risen 
above conventionality, and so they commend him to a certain class 
of hearers. The joke which would be little accounted of elsewhere 
is greatly relished in the sanctuary, and the effect which it produces 
remains, while other portions of the sermon which were in every 
way unexceptionable are forgotten. The profanity of the oath 
which is common on the street has a peculiar piquancy when it is 
quoted, even if it be quoted only to be condemned, in the house of 
God, and the gusto with which it was given will be commented on 
when other things of great value are entirely lost sight of. We know, 
indeed, that conventionality may be so cared for that power will be 
destroyed, and we have heard fears expressed lest the pulpit should 
die of dignity ; but that is no reason why it should be murdered by 
irreverence. In order to escape the one extreme, it is not necessary 
to run into the other ; and, to prevent an audience from going to 
sleep, it is not absolutely essential to turn the sermon into a mid- 
night directory. We would not reject an apt illustration which 
would clinch a lesson, even if it should bring a smile to the coun- 
tenance ; but we demur to the deliberate introduction of low comedy 
into a discourse pronounced in a church. To our thinking, all that 


comes under the category of " jesting which is not convenient " ; 
and, if it be said that it is resorted to in order to bring an audience 
out, we can only reply that we are not of those who believe that 
the end sanctifies such means, and moreover that such means are 
not needed in order to gain the end. Everything low, vulgar, or in 
the least degree savoring of the profane, ought to be banished from 
the pulpit. For, though we draw a distinction between the service 
and the sermon, they are both alike a part of our homage to God. 
Why does the preacher care to preach if it be not because preach- 
ing is God's ordinance ? Why does the hearer care to hear if it be 
not because of the reverence which he has for preaching as God's 
way of saving them that believe ? The sermon is an offering to 
God on the part of the preacher equally with the praise and prayer ; 
and the hearing is an offering to God on the part of the worshiper 
equally with the hymns and supplications ; and, if that were re- 
membered by all, there would be less disposition to say smart things, 
or to laugh at them when said. The associations of the place, too, 
should count for something. Even if we do not believe in what 
our Episcopal friends call consecration, " Nature herself " may teach 
us that a certain propriety should be observed by us when we are in 
a house of worship. Call it conventionality, if you please, still we 
are entitled to ask what greater harm there is in maintaining it 
there than there is in enforcing special rules at an evening party ? 
And yet men who would be scrupulous to nicety in their regard to 
the etiquette of dress and address in the latter case will laugh to 
scorn all deference to recognized rules of decorum in the pulpit, 
and make a merit of their rudeness. But they can not do so with- 
out shockinor the more refined of their hearers and inflictinor an in- 
jury upon themselves. They destroy their usefulness with all who 
seek to be devout. But they blunt also their own finer instincts. 
It makes no great matter whether the conventionality be in every 
respect proper or not ; the mere existence of it suffices, and it is 
one of the things in which a w^ise man, even if he differed from it, 
would seek to become as " a Jew to the Jews." Few uphold the 
justice of the game laws in the old country, yet the poacher com- 
monly end ^ in becoming a good-for-nothing, for in breaking a bad 
law he has lost his sense of the sanctity of law as such, and so is 
ready for something worse. In the same way even if the conven- 
tionality that puts a restraint around the pulpit were not in every 
respect to be approved, the setting of it at defiance must break the 
enamel of the preacher's reverence, and may end in eating it away 


altogether. How much more likely is that to be the case when the 
sentiment to which we refer is in the main a right one, sustained 
and approved by Christian people generally ! 

But this prepares us for looking a little at the evils to which 
sensationalism leads. One can see at a glance that it is hurtful to 
the hearers. It not only depraves their tastes, but it blunts their 
sensibilities. It has an effect upon them not unlike that produced 
by highly-seasoned novels of the " blood-and-thunder " order on their 
juvenile readers. It renders them largely impervious to the ordi- 
nary presentation of truth. The pampered appetite disdains every- 
thing that is not " gamey " ; and he 

who peppers the highest is surest to please. 

Besides, the exhilaration that is produced by the hearing of such 
exciting things is apt to be mistaken by those who experience it 
for real enjoyment of Christian ordinances ; and so under its in- 
fluence they make professions which time only dishonors. They 
have confounded the intoxication created in them by the gratifica- 
tion of their perverted tastes with that totally different thing which 
the apostle describes when he says, *' Be ye filled with the Spirit." 
It is nothing to the purpose here to reply that the same thing 
is done at the other end of the scale by those who are highly 
aesthetic in their likings ; for that is only another form of the evil, 
and not an extenuation of it. It makes little difference whether 
intoxication be produced by the vulgar absinthe or the aristocratic 
champagne ; the thing is always bad, and is not to be mistaken for 
the enthusiasm of a sober man. And the misfortune is that, in the 
case of those of whom we speak, a sensuous effect is regarded as a 
spiritual result to the detriment both of the self-deceiver and of the 
church at large. 

But perhaps the most insidious danger is incurred by the preacher 
himself. He is apt to think more of saying a " smart," a " telling," 
or a " taking " thing than of communicating the truth. In this way 
he uses extravagant epithets, gives exaggerated descriptions, and 
magnifies or distorts features for the sake of effect. Even so noble 
a man as Thomas Guthrie once said, in regard to the preparation of 
a sermon, " It is like the drop-scene in a theatre, and you must lay 
on the color thick." But, with all deference to such an authority, 
that advice is exceedingly pernicious. For he who consciously ex- 
aggerates does at the same time blunt the edge of his conscience. 
Every time he deviates from or adds to the real state of the case he 
VOL. cxxvni. — NO. 267. 14 


makes himself a worse man. Truth is the girdle of character, and 
he who loosens that is on the way to looseness in other departments 
of morality. He is on an inclined plane, and may some day pro- 
duce the biggest sensation of his life by a terrible ^'asco. For the 
temptation is to go on. His hearers become accustomed to the dose, 
the appetite " grows by what it feeds on," and, in order to have the 
effects which were at first produced, they crave for something 
stronger. He seeks to meet that new demand just as he sought to 
meet the first, and so it increases until the flippant has become the 
irreverent, and the irreverent has become the profane, and the pro- 
fane becomes the impure ; or until the odd has become the hereti- 
cal, and the man who began with throwing aside conventionalities 
ends by parting with the central verities of the gospel. We do not 
aflSrm that all this has actually happened in any individual case, 
but the drift and tendency of sensationalism are in that direction ; 
and, in a day when some who are guilty of it are riding on the top 
of the wave, it is proper to warn young preachers of the peril that 
is incurred by entering on such a course. 

It may seem, indeed, to offer a short and easy path to success ; 
for it can not be denied that we are living in an age which appears 
to crave for the sensational, but the yielding to it is always attended 
with danger, as may be seen by looking at what has actually oc- 
curred in other departments. There has been a call for it in worship, 
and the answer has been given in that ritualism which has honey- 
combed the Church of England ; but the peril has been revealed in 
the perversions to the Church of Rome which have thereby been 
caused. There has been a call for it in business, and the answer has 
been furnished in those feverish speculations which have maddened 
our Exchanges, while the danger has been made manifest in Black 
Fridays, Glasgow Bank failures, and that general depression from 
which we are only beginning to emerge. There has been a call for 
it in politics, and the response has been made by the appearance of 
a Beaconsfield conjurer on the one side of the Atlantic, while the 
peril has been exposed by cipher dispatches on the other. Now, 
when the same appeal is made to the pulpit, we may not flatter our- 
selves that we can respond to it without similar danger. That which 
in literature has made the difference between Walter Scott and 
Ouida will make as wide a chasm in ^he pulpit between the true 
minister of the word and the caterer to the cravings of the crowd. 
Trustees of embarrassed churches may so far catch the infection of 
our times as to look for a minister who will fill the pews by some 


sndden rush, and bring up the revenue to a flowing surplus. But 
it will be " lightly come, lightly go," and pastors should steadily re- 
fuse to lead any such forlorn hope in that commercial spirit. There 
is but one attraction that it is safe for a minister to use, and that 
has not yet lost its power : " I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will 
draw all men unto me." Let him adhere to that, for in the end it 
will prove sufficient. It may not bring the crowd so rapidly ; but it 
will transform them as they come, and they will come to stay. But, 
if they do not come, let him still keep to the lifting up of Him. 
Let him not forget that, when the sensation-loving multitude sought 
Ilim that they might see liis miracles, he declined to gratify their 
curiosityj and gave them instead that deeply spiritual sermon which 
drove them largely away. But it was with the winnowed men that 
remained that he laid the foundations of his church. The call of 
the age for the exciting is a temptation to be resisted, rather than 
an influence to be yielded to, and if in resisting it the multitudes 
should be offended, then let them be offended, for in that case the 
discipline is only what they need. But they will not be offended, 
for, wherever the gospel is faithfully and earnestly proclaimed, " the 
common people hear it gladly." Let the ministers of Christ among 
us, therefore, remain true to the scriptural ideal of their office as 
designed not merely for the pleasing of men, but for their salvation 
" through sanctitication of the Spirit and belief of the truth " ; let 
them be loyal to the Master whose they are and whom they serve ; 
let them preserve that reverent spirit which a belief in the inspira- 
tion of the Book which they expound is fitted to produce within 
them ; above all, let them follow fully the example of Him of whom 
it was said, " He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause his voice to be 
heard in the street ; a bruised reed he shall not break, and the 
smoking flax shall he not quench," and they will never be long with- 
out eager and numerous hearers ; nay, they may succeed, by the 
might of his gentleness and the power of his Spirit, in changing the 
character of the age from that of spasmodic and erratic excitement 
to that of steady, sure, and benevolent advancement. 

William M. Tatloe. 



1. Ch. Aubertin, Histoire de la Langue et de la Litt6rature Fran^aise an 

Moyen Age. 2 vols. 1 876-' 78. 

2. L6on Gautier, Les Epopees Fran^aises. I. 1878. 

3. M. Sepet, Le Drame Chretien au Moyen Age, 1878 ; Les Proplietes du 

Christ, 1878. 

4. Societe des Anciens Textes Frangais : Guillaume de Palerne, 1876 ; Les 

Sept Sages de Rome, 1876 ; Miracles de Nostre Dame. I., II. 1876-'77 ; 
Aiol, 1877. 

The immense influence exerted on the rest of Europe during the 
middle ages by the literature of France should entitle it, aside from 
8Bsthetic considerations, to more careful attention than it has yet 
received. Not only is its volume enormous (a proof of intellectual 
activity such as it was), but several departments are fully repre- 
sented in which the French mind has, from its modern manifesta- 
tions, been supposed to be inferior to its neighbors, the Germans 
and Spaniards — we mean the epic and the national drama. Finally, 
certain favorable influences — the rapid and complete assimilation of 
Roman culture, the early adoption of Christianity , and the perfection 
of the feudal system — contributed to render the medisBval literature 
of France the most splendid and varied of Europe. The causes 
which have led to the neglect of this literature are those which have 
affected the rest of Europe to a greater or less degree. The revival 
of letters produced in no other country so profound a revolution in 
literary taste, or led to such deep scorn of all that was mediaeval. 
A reaction had, however, begun in France before the indiscriminat- 
ing enthusiasm of the Romantic school had directed attention to 
the early literature ; and two French scholars, Sainte-Pelaye and 
Raynouard, devoted their lives to rendering accessible treasures 
which only a radical change in taste could enable their countrymen 
to enjoy. Unfortunately, the question of literary criticism became 


entangled at the outset with the religious questions involved in the 
revival of mediicval studies, not so much as in Germany, perhaps, 
but sufficient to render any impartial judgment impossible for a long 
time, and to lead in turn to a reaction the effects of which are 
now strongly felt. In other words, the mediaeval literature of 
France has been exposed to the extreme criticism of two schools, 
one cherishing for it a blind worship, not because it is national (its 
truest title to reverence), but because it is Catholic, the other refus- 
ing to see any good in a literature which is the exponent of a spirit 
they fear and hate. 

Fortunately, two causes have worked to modify these extreme 
views and restore old French literature to the place it rightly claims 
at the head of the mediaeval literature of Europe. One of these 
causes is the linguistic interest awakened by the new methods intro- 
duced into Romance philology by Friedrich Dicz, and continued in 
France with such brilliant success by Caston Paris, and which has 
caused the early literature to be carefully edited and critically ex- 
amined in the interest of philology alone. Thus a common meeting 
place for both parties was rendered possible. The second cause is 
the new method of study in literary history in which prime impor- 
tance is laid not upon oBsthetic considerations, but upon the histori- 
cal development of a literature. From this standpoint the begin- 
nings of a literature, formerly passed over as barbarous, assume an 
importance not attained by much that is aesthetically superior. 

The vast extent of the subject has as yet prevented any strict 
application of this method to mediaeval French literature as a whole, 
and the lack of a compendious history of this period has long been 
felt, and has contributed in no slight degree to the ignorance of the 
subject.* M. Aubertin has therefore laid the general reader as well 
as the scholar under great obligations by his recently completed 
history, which, with certain restrictions, we do not hesitate to pro- 
nounce admirable, f The author has patiently and skillfully con- 
sulted the most recent works (not often enough those published out 
of France) on the subject, and compiled a work which, while it lays 

* There are two very unsatisfactory German compends of mediaeval French litera- 
ture : the first " Geschichte der altfranzosischen National-Literatur," von J. L. Ideler, 
Berlin, 1842, is a dry bibliographical manual; the second, "Geschichte der franzo- 
eischcn Literatur im Mittelalter," von Dr. H. Semmig, Leipzig, 1862, is incomplete and 

f Histoire de la Langue et de la Litterature Fran9aise au Moyen Age d'apr^s les 
Travaux les Plus Recents, par M. Charles Aubertin, Paris, Belin, 1876-"78, 2 vols. 
Svo, vol. i., viii.-582 ; vol. ii. 685. 


little claim to original research and independence of opinion, is 
valuable as a digest of the results of the best scholarship in this 
field. At the same time M. Aubertin has known how to give his 
book the appearance and attraction of an original work, and has 
accomplished, with certain limitations, the object he proposes in his 
preface : '' Mon ambition est qu'en sortant de la lecture de cet ou- 
vrage on emporte non pas un aper9u, une idee vague et superficielle, 
mais une connaissance intime et penetrante de notre ancienne littera- 
ture et des nombreux travaux que I'etude de nos origines litt6raires 
a sus cites." In addition to great care and industry in the study of 
his sources, he has brought to his task skill in the arrangement of 
his material and sobriety of judgment in the critical portions of his 
labor. The faults of M. Aubertin's work are a multitude of minor 
errors of fact very difficult to avoid in view of the immense mass of 
material to be examined and collated, and some errors of judgment 
in the due proportion of his matter and its aesthetic valuation.* 
We will mention briefly some faults of the second class which affect 
more particularly the general reader. The author devotes almost 
everywhere too much space to the discussion of the origins of the 
literature and too little to the literature itself. The general reader 
does not need to read an entire chapter on the debris of the ancient 
tragedy at the beginning of the middle ages in order to learn what 
the author states at the outstart, that " no living germ could spring 
from this debris.'^'* The Epopee is treated with unwarrantable brev- 
ity, but one chapter of thirty-two pages is devoted to the chansons 
de geste and only two are analyzed at some length, the " Chanson 
de Roland " and " Raoul de Cambrai," which represent but two of 
the five great cycles adopted by Gautier in the work to be men- 
tioned later. The same remarks apply to the author's treatment of 
the romances of the Round Table, those belonging to the ancient 
cycle and the romans d^aventures to which we shall return d propos 
of " Guillaume de Paleme." 

To conclude, the weakest part of the work is the introduction 
on the origin of the language and the treatment of the chansons de 
geste ; the best the pages devoted to the drama in the first volume, 
and 4n the second to the prose writers of the twelfth to the sixteenth 
century, especially the second section, devoted to the orators. 

Fortunately, the weakest part of Aubertin's book, his treatment 

* We advise the student who uses Aubertin to consult the careful review of the 
first volume by Gaston Paris in the " Romania," No. 23, pp. 454-466. 


of the chansons de geste, is supplemented and completed in the 
fullest manner by Gautier's masterly work.* The author represents 
the most extreme Ultramontane school in literature. Everything 
about his work, to the very printer, is Catholic, and the " indulgent 
reader " whom the author has in view is indicated by the w^ords in 
the preface to the second edition : " S'il est chretien et Fran9ais, il 
n'accueillcra pas sans quelque sympathie un livre consciencieux et 
qui a did surtout inspire par Tamour de I'^figlise et de la France." 
AVe venture to predict that the author's circle of readers will be 
larger than he imagined, and many not embraced in the above cate- 
gory will welcome with delight a work which, when completed, will 
be a monument of profound scholarship and ardent enthusiasm. 

In 18G5 M. Gautier published three volumes of the first edition 
(it was never completed), the success of which was immediate and 
great. It was three times crowned by the French Academy, receiv- 
ing the great Gobert prize in 1868, and the edition was soon ex- 
hausted. Not all the author's theories, however, were accepted by 
the learned world, and the w^ork was exposed to the severe and 
intelligent criticisms of such scholars as Karl Bartsch (" Revue Cri- 
tique," 1800, No. 5:^) and Paul Meyer (" Recherches sur T^popee 
Franyaise," Paris, 1807), who rectified many of Gautier's errors. 
Moreover, since the publication of the first edition several works 
have appeared in France which have made an epoch in the study of 
its early literature; w^e need only mention the "Vie de Saint- 
Alexis," Paris, 1872, in the introduction to which Gaston Paris 
formulated (for the first time in France) the principles of textual 
criticism which have made a veritable revolution in this field. 

In preparing, then, a second edition of his work, M. Gautier was 
able to avail himself of a large mass of new material, and was 
obliged, in order to keep abreast of the immense advance in schol- 
arship, to entirely rewrite his former work. He has performed this 
difficult part of his task in the most exemplary manner, rectifying 
his minor errors and modifying his theories, so that the work before 
us is, to all intents and purposes, a new one. The work has growTi 
in the process, and when completed will consist of six volumes, 
their contents disposed as follows : the first and second will be 
devoted to the origin, form, and vicissitudes of the chansons de 
geste in France and abroad ; the third to the analysis of the chan- 

* Les 6pop6es Fran9aise3. ^tude sur les Origines et I'Histoire de la Litt^rature 
nationale, par L6on Gautier. Seconde Edition, entierement refondue. Paris : 
Soci6t6 Gen6rale de Libraire Catholiquc. ISYS. Vol. I. 8vo, pp. xii.-661. 


sons de geste of the Cycle of the King (those relating more closely 
to Charlemagne himself), the fourth and part of the fifth to the 
Cycle of William of Orange ; part of the fifth to the Provincial 
Gestes ; and the sixth to the Cycles of Doon de Mayence and the 

The first volume may be considered complete in itself, and is of 
value, not merely to those interested in the chansons de geste, but 
to all students of mediaeval French literature. It is principally 
concerned with the origin, poetical form, refacciamenti, and style 
of the c/tansons de geste. The discussion of these topics involves 
a number of other important questions, which are treated in extenso 
by the author. The principal are : the age of the chronicle attrib- 
uted to Turpin, the MSS. of the chansons de geste and the various 
modes of editing them, and an exhaustive treatise on early French 
versification in general, and that of the chansons de geste in particu- 
lar. The most important theories in regard to the subject treated 
in the first volume are as follows : The French epic was born to- 
ward the ninth century, when the Gallic, Latin, and Frankish na- 
tions were no longer clearly separated, and when from their fusion 
a new nationality had arisen to which the name " Romance " must 
be applied, or, in the words of Gaston Paris, " the French epic is 
the German spirit in a Romance form." The epic was preceded by 
certain popular songs which were lyrical and narrative at the same 
time. These cantiUnes were sometimes the source of the epic, 
which, however, in many cases had its rise in oral tradition. The 
theory that there was between tradition and the epic an interme- 
diate link in the shape of Latin chronicles (such as the Chronicle of 
Turpin) is incorrect. The date of the chronicle falsely ascribed to 
Turpin is the beginning of the twelfth century and posterior to the 
^rly chansons de geste, some of which the writer of the chronicle 
must have used. Finally, the epic is essentially French, and the 
claim of Provence to an extensive epical literature must be denied. 

In conclusion, the author has produced a work of great scien- 
tific value and popular interest, which can not but give a powerful 
impetus to the study of a period and subject so dear to the author's 
heart, and to which he has devoted his life with the most intense 

The extent of the subject of Gautier's work may be inferred 
from the statement he makes on page 223 (note) that about one 
hundred chansons de geste have come down to us, most of them 
from the twelfth century ; forty-seven of these have been published 


in extensOy and ten or eleven in extracts. It will be seen that not 
quite half have been published, and that a wide field is still left for 
I he editor and scholar. One of those most recently published, 
" Aiol," presents many features of interest.* The original poem, 
written in French and in verse of ten syllables, about the middle of 
the twelfth century, was made over at the beginning of the next 
century by a Picard poet who employed the Alexandrine verse. 
The change in metre takes place in about the middle of the poem, 
and is accompanied by a very noticeable change in the character of 
the narration. The Alexandrine verse follows the usual rules of 
mediajval French versification : the ten-syllable verse is noteworthy 
for having the caesura at the sixth instead of at the fourth syllable. 
This caesura, heretofore supposed to be peculiar to Proven5al, is 
now shown to be French also. Another peculiarity of the ten-syl- 
lable verse in " Aiol " is that the cajsura is always after the sixth 
syllable, but in a large number of verses the second hemistich be- 
gins with the last mute syllable of the preceding word, which 
counts as an accented syllable. The poem rests on an historic basis, 
and with !£lie de Saint-Gille constitute a little cycle by themselves. 
Til the thirteenth century, however, the tendency was to include the 
minor separate ycstes in one of the three great ones (the gestes of 
the King, of Doon de Mayence, and of Garin de Monglane), and 
our poem was accordingly referred to the last named. 

The subject of the poem is exploits of Aiol, son of Avisse, sister 
of Louis, son of Charlemagne, and Elie, who has been unjustly 
driven from France by the intrigues of the traitor Makavie of 

This poem enjoyed unusual popularity abroad, imitations being 
found in the Netherlands, Italy, and Spain. It has been very dif- 
ferently judged by different scholars, some deeming it unworthy of 
notice, and others, among them Gautier, not hesitating to call it a 
fine poem, and one which can occupy one of the most honorable 
positions among the monuments of mediaeval literature. 

The roman cPaventiires is not considered by Gautier as epic in 
its nature, and is therefore excluded from his work as well as the 
romances of the Round Table and those belonging to the Cycle of 
Rome. Aubertin treats them very insufficiently, not laying enough 
stress on their literary value or their importance for the history of 

* Aiol, Chanson de Geste, publiee d'apres le MS. Unique de Paris, par Jacques 
Normand et Gaston Raymond. Paris, ISYV. (Societe des Anciens Textes Fran- 
^ais.) 8vo, pp. lxvii.-350. 


culture. Of especial value from the latter standpoint is " Guillaume 
de Palerne," * a roman d'^aventures, and also interesting from being 
the original of an English version composed about 1350 and edited 
by Sir F. Madden for the Roxburghe Club, and again in 1867 by 
W. W. Skeat in the first volume of the " Extra Series of the Early 
English Text." Besides the English version there is a prose ver- 
sion in French which has passed through several editions, and an 
analysis in the " Nouvelle Biblioth^que des Romans," that final 
resting-place of mediseval romances. 

The hero Guillaume is the son of a King of Sicily and of the 
daughter of the Emperor of Greece. A perfidious uncle plans his 
destruction, but the child is carried off one day by a were-wolf who 
bears him to its den near Rome. The wolf, we learn, is the son of 
the King of Spain, turned into a beast by his mother-in-law to assure 
the throne to her oAvn son. Guillaume is found in the forest by a 
shepherd who brings him up until one day the Emperor of Rome, 
having lost his way in a forest, meets him, takes him to his court 
and makes him the page of his daughter, the fair Melior. Guil- 
laume is knighted and defeats the Duke of Saxony, who has declared 
war against the emperor. After this the Emperor of Greece de- 
mands the hand of Melior, who has long loved Guillaume. The 
lovers flee, disguised in the skins of bears. The wolf accompanies 
them and assists their flight. They all make their way to Sicily, 
where, after many complicated adventures, the plot is unraveled, 
the wolf is restored to his original shape, Guillaume becomes King 
of Sicily, marries Melior and succeeds her father, the wolf becoming 
later King of Spain. The influence of the Orient is felt not merely 
in the enchantment of the prince, but in the exaggerated tone of 
gallantry that reigned at the period the work was composed, the 
end of the twelfth or the beginning of the thirteenth century. 

Entirely Oriental is the next work we shall mention, two versions 
of the famous " Seven Wise Masters." f Both versions are in prose: 
the first is the old French poem published by Keller in 1836, un- 
rhymed and not following exactly the original ; the second is a 
reprint of the French translation (published at Geneva in 1492) of 
the Latin version known as the " Historia Septem Sapientum," here- 

* Guillaume de Palerne, public d'apr^s le Manuscrit de la Biblioth^que de 1' Arse- 
nal Ik Paris, par H. Michelant. Paris, 1876. (Societ6 des Anciens Textes rran9ais.) 
8vo, pp. xxii.-280. 

f Deux Redactions du Roman des Sept Sages de Rome, publiees par Gaston Paris. 
Paris, 1876. (Soci^te des Anciens Textes Fran9ais.) 8vo, pp. xliii.-217. 


tofore considered the source of most of the European versions. The 
editor does not share this opinion, and shows very clearly in the 
preface that the Latin work is only a translation, with some changes, 
of a French original from which is derived a group represented by 
some dozen MSS., one of which, B. N., No. 2,137, has been partly 
published by Leroux de Lincy (in " Essai sur les Fables Indiennes," 
par A. Loiseleur Deslongchamps, Paris, 1838). The Latin work 
is very rare, and the French translation here reprinted will replace 
it very conveniently for scholars. The interest attaching to the 
" Seven Wise Masters " is not entirely a thing of the past, for the 
work is still popular as a whole in some parts of Europe, and many 
of the individual stories still entertain crowds of listeners in Italy. 

We have to mention very briefly in conclusion three works re- 
lating to the mcdia3val drama.* The first of M. Sepet's works is a 
popular account of the mediieval drama, contained in a series of 
articles published in various periodicals. The author gives a clear 
and interesting account of the origin and development of the rnys- 
tdre from the liturgy of the Church, and shows how the Renaissance 
prevented it from being transformed into the modwn national dra- 
ma, as in Spain and England. He also gives examples of religious 
dramas belonging to the cycles of Christmas and Easter, and a 
sketch of a dramatic representation at the end of the fifteenth cen- 
tury. The second work is strictly technical, its object being " to 
show how a sermon on the Nativity, which formed in a large num- 
ber of dioceses durinjx the middle a^res one of the lessons for Christ- 
mas, was transfonned into a liturgical mysthre, then into a semi- 
liturgical nii/sth'C, performed both within and without the Church, 
and finally became an integral part of the great dramatic cycle of 
the fifteenth century." The author's profound scholarship and pa- 
tient research are everywhere apparent in this valuable work. 

The remarkable series of plays entitled " Miracles de Nostre 
Dame " represent the highest aesthetic point reached by the mediae- 
val drama, and the most interesting stage of its development as far 
as the possibility of a national drama based on the mysthres is con- 
cerned. The forty miracles of the MS. will be contained in six 
volumes, a seventh will give the necessary notes and the glossary. 

* Le Drame Chretien au Moyen Age, par M. Sepet, Paris, 18V8. Les Pro- 
phfetes du Christ. Etude sur les Origines du Theatre au Moyen Age, par M. Sepet, 
Paris, 1878. Miracles de Nostre Dame par Personnages publics d'apr^s le MS. de 
la Biblioth^que Nationale, par Gaston Paris et Ulysse Robert. I., II. Paris, 1876- 
'77. (Soci6t6 des Ancicus Textes rran9ais.) 


These plays early attracted the attention of scholars, and some fif- 
teen have been published at different times. The MS. is of the 
beginning of the fifteenth century, and the plays were probably 
performed by some of the religious and literary confreries so com- 
mon in the north of France in the thirteenth century. Some of the 
plays are preceded by short sermons, and terminated by a poem 
(called serventoys, from the Provenyal form), one of which is said 
to have been crowned at the Puy, or assemblage where the plays 
were performed. 

From the above brief review of some recent works it will be 
seen that the interest in mediaeval French literature is constantly 
increasing, and rapidly losing a dilettante character. An excellent 
history of the literature of this period and the publications of the 
Societe des Anciens Textes Fran^ais will aid in making a larger 
circle acquainted with the remarkable manifestations of French 
genius in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. 

T. F. Ceane. 


Oratory and Orators. By William Matuews, LL. D. Chicago: S. 0. 
Griggs & Co. 12mo, pp. 466. 

Gates into the Psalm- Country . By Marvin R. Vincent, D. D. New 
York: Charles Scribner's Sons. 12nio, pp. 315. 

The Races of European Turkey : Their History^ Condition^ and Prospects. 
In Three Parts. By Edson L. Clark. New York : Dodd, Mead & Co. 
12mo, pp. 532. 

A Century of American Literature., 1776-1876. Edited by Henry A. 
Beers. New York : Henry Holt & Co. 16mo, pp. 407. 

Life and Faith: Sonnets. By George McKnight. New York: Henry 
Holt & Co. 16mo, pp. 136. 

Beaconsfield. By George Makepeace Towle. New York : D. Appleton 
&Co. 24mo, pp. 163. 

The Relation of Morality and Law. By John Proffatt, LL. B. 8vo, 
pp. IG. 

Nature and Life : including all the Miscellaneous Poems^ with many 
Original Pieces. By Nicholas Mitchell. London: Frederick Warne & 
Co. 16mo, pp. 358. 

Fifth Annual Report of the Secretary of the State Board of Health of the 
State of Michigan for the Fiscal Year ending September 30, 1877. Svo, pp. 

National Works. By F. J. Scott. Toledo : Barkdull Printing Co. Svo, 
pp. 18. 

Prince BismarcFs Letters to his Wife, his Sister, and Others, from 18^4 
to 1870. Translated from the German by Fitz'' Maxse. New York : Charles 
Scribner's Sons. 16mo, pp. 259. 

The American Colleges and the American Puilic. By Noah Portei:, 
D. D., LL. D. New York : Charles Scribner's Sons. 12mo, pp. 403. 

Addresses and Orations of Rufus Choate. Boston : Little, Brown & Co. 
12mo, pp. 629. 

Johnson''s Chief Lives of the Poets, teing those of Milton, Dryden, Swift, 
Addison, Pope, Gray ; and Macaulay''s Life of Johnson, with a Preface. By 
Matthew Arnold. To which are appended Macaulay''s and CarlyWs Essays 


on BoswelVs Life of Johnson. New York : Henry Holt & Co. 12mo, pp. 

The Bible of To-day. By John W. Chadwick:. New York: G. P. Put- 
nam's Sons. 12mo, pp. 304. 

American Colleges: their Students and WorTc. By Charles F. Thwing. 
New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 16rao, pp. 159. 

Outlines of Ontological Science: or, A Philosophy of Knowledge and of 
Being. By Heney N. Day. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 12mo, 
pp. 441. 

Raymonde. By ANDEfe Theupjet. New York : D. Appleton & Co. 
24mo, pp. 204. 

StocTc- Breeding : A Practical Treatise on the Application of the Laws of 
Development and Heredity to the Improvement and Breeding of Domestic Ani- 
mals. By Manly Miles, M. D. New York : D. Appleton & Co. 12mo, 
pp. 424. 

The French Revolutionary Epoch; "being a History of France from the Be- 
ginning of the French Revolution to the End of the Second Empire. By 
Henbi van Laun. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 2 vols. 12mo, pp. 
503, 454. 

La Question sociale ; Rente, Interet, Societe, VAvenir. Par E. Fatjcon"- 
NiEE, Docteur en Droit. Paris: Librairie Germer Bailli^re et Cie. 16rao, 
pp. 329. 

A Review of the Halifax Fishery Award. By Alexander Bliss. "Wash- 
ington : R. Beresford, printer. 8vo, pp. 24. 

Six Selections from Irving'' s Shetch-Booh. By Homer B. Sprague, Ph. D. 
Boston: Ginn & Heath. ICmo, pp. 118. 

Milton''s Lycidas. Edited, with Notes, by Homer B. Sprague, Ph. D. 
Boston: Ginn & Heath. lOmo, pp. 38. 

TJie Elements of Plane Trigonometry. By H. N. Wheeler, A. M. Bos- 
ton : Ginn & Heath, 16rao, pp. 51. 

Tlie Present Position and Prospects of Political Economy. By John H. 
Ingram, LL. D. London : Longmans & Co. 8vo, pp. 31. 

The Bohemian: A Tragedy of Modern Life. By Charles De Kay. New 
York: Charles Scribner's Sons. 16mo, pp. 107. 

Socrates : A Translation of the Apology, Crito, and Parts of the Phado 
of Plato. New York : Charles Scribner's Sons. 16mo, pp. 159. 

The Poet and his Master, and Other Poems. By Richard "Watson 
Gilder, New York: Charles Scribner's Sons. 16mo, pp. 67. 

Lautrec : A Poem. By John Payne. London: Pickering & Co. 16mo, 
pp. 69. 

Monetary Diplomacy in 1878. By Henri Cernuschi. London : P. S. 
King. 12mo, pp. 63. 

The American Decisions : Containing all the Cases of General Value and 
Authority decided in the Courts of the Several States, from the Earliest Issue 
of the State Reports to the Year 1869. Compiled and annotated by John 


pROFFATT, LL. B. Vol. VI. San Francisco : A. L. Bancroft & Co. 8vo, 
pp. 783. 

Eitex : A Play. By D. Cuarles Campbell. London : Williams & Nor- 
gate. 12mo, pp. 131. 

Schiller^B William Tell: Translated into English Verse^ with an Intro, 
ductory Essay. By D. C. Campbell. London : TTilliams & Norgate. 12mo, 
pp. 173. 

*' Do They Lote Us Yet f " By Mrs. Cornklics W. Lawrence. New 
York: James Miller. 12mo, pp. 234. 

A Memoir of Matthew Davenport Hill, with Selections from his Corre- 
sponden^e. By his Daughters, Rosamond and Florence Davenport Hill. 
London : Macmillan & Co. Svo, pp. 515. 

The Telegraph in America: Its Founders, Promoters, and Noted Men. 
By James D. Reid. New York : Derhy Brothers. Royal Svo, pp. 846. 

Selected Essays. By A. Uayward, Esq., Q. C. In two vols. London : 
Longmans, Green & Co. 16mo, pp. 456, 463. 

The Return of the Native. By Thomas Hardy. New York: Henry 
Holt & Co. 16mo, pp. 465. 

Principles of Political Economy. By William Rosoheb. From the Thir- 
teenth German Edition, with Additional Chapters furnished hy the Author^ 
for this First English and American Edition on Paper Money, International 
Trade, and the Protective System; and a Preliminary Essay on the Historical 
Method in Political Economy. By L. Wolowbkt. The whole translated by 
John J. Lalor, A. M. In two vols. New York : Henry Holt & Co. 8vo, 
pp. 464, 465. 

La Vita e le Opere di Ouilo Cesare Proee, Monografia di Olindo Guee- 
RiNi. In Bologna; Presso Nicola Zaniohelli. 8vo, pp. 516. 

Addresses and Speeches on Various Occasions, from 1869 to 1879. By 
Robert C. Wintiirop. Boston : Little, Brown & Co. 8vo, pp. 566. 

Zur Arheiterfrage in der Landwirthschaft. Von Dr. Ottomae Viotoe 
Leo. Oppeln: Commissionsverlag von W. Clar's Buchhandlung. 8vo, pp. 

Economics for Beginners. By Henry Dunning Macleod, M. A. London: 
Longmans, Green & Co. 16mo, pp. 171. 

A Popular Commentary on the New Testament. By English and Ameri- 
can Scholars of Various Evangelical Denominations. With Illustrations and 
Maps. Edited by Philip Schaff, D. D., LL. D. In four volumes. Vol. I. 
Introduction, and the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke. New York: 
Charles Scribner's Sons. 8vo, pp. 508. 

The Complete Dramatic and Poetical Worlcs of William Sha'kespea/re. 
With a Summary Outline of the Life of the Poet, and a Description of his 
most Authentic Portraits ; collected from the Latest and most Reliable 
Sources. By John S. Hart, LL. D. To which is appended a Descriptive 
Analysis of the Plot of each Play ; together with an Alphabetical Index to 
the Characters of Shalcespeare^s Plays, an Index to Familiar Passages, and a 
Complete Glossary of the Words used in the Text that vary from their Modern 


Signification. The Text edited by W. G. Clark, and W. A. "Weight. Phila- 
delphia: Claxton, Remsen & Haffelfinger. Royal 8vo, pp. 896. 

Paper Money: a Collection of the Principal Historical Facts bearing 
upon the Current Financial Discussion. By H. W. Richaedson. New York : 
D. Appleton & Co. 16mo, pp. 59. 

The Diary of a Woman. From the French of Octave Feuillet. New 
York: D. Appleton & Co. 16mo, pp. 212. 

Social Etiquette of New York. New York : D. Appleton & Co. 16mo, 
pp. 187. 



March, 1879. 

No. 268. 

Troa Tyriusque mihi nullo discrimine agetur. 


649 & 651 BROADWAY. 




is^ORTH america:n^ review. 

MARCH, 1879. 

I. Ought the Negro to be Disfkanchised ? Ought 

HB TO have been ENFRANCHISED? . . . 225 

By James G. Blaine, 

United States Senator from Maine. 

L. Q. C. Lamar, 

United States Senator from Mississippi. 

Wade Hampton, 

Governor of South Carolina. 

General James A. Garfield, 

Member of Congress from Ohio. 

Alexander H. Stephens, 

Member of Congret^s from Georgia. 

Wendell Phillips. 
Montgomery Blair. 
Thomas A. Hendricks. 

n. The Philosophy of Jonathan Edwards. By Pro- 
fessor George P. Fisher, D. D., of Yale College . 284 

m. The Indian Problem. By General Nelson A. Miles, 

U. S. A .304 

IV. Cryptography in Politics. By John R. G. Hassard. 315 

V. Russian Novels and Novelists of the Day : The 
Diary of a Sportsman, and other Novels ; Smoke : a 
Novel ; Virgin Soil : a Novel ; Childhood and Youth ; 
War and Peace ; Anna Karenina : a Novel. By S. 
E. Shevitch ...... 326 

Publications Received . . . • 335 

The Editor disclaims responsibility for the opinions 
of contributors, whether their articles are signed or 



MARCH, 1879. 


Jaxes O. Blaine. James A. Garfield. Montgomeey Blaie. 

L. Q. C. Lahar. Alexandeb H. Stkpuens. Thomas A. Hendbicks. 

Wadb Uampton. Wendell Phillips. Conclusion— James G. Blaine. 


These questions have lately been asked by many who have been 
distinguished as the special champions of the negro's rights ; by 
many who have devoted their lives to redressing the negro's wrongs. 
The questions owe their origin not to any cooling of philanthropic 
interest, not to any novel or radical views about universal suffrage, 
but to the fact that, in the judgment of many of those hitherto ac- 
counted wisest, negro suffrage has failed to attain the ends hoped 
for when the franchise was conferred ; failed as a means of more 
completely securing the negro's civil rights ; failed to bring him 
the consideration which generally attaches to power ; failed, indeed, 
to achieve anything except to increase the political weight and in- 
fluence of those against whom, and in spite of whom, his enfranchise- 
ment was secured. 

Those who have reached this conclusion, and those who are tend- 
ing toward it, argue that the important franchise was prematurely 
bestowed on the negro ; that its possession necessarily places him 
VOL. cxxvni. — NO. 268. 15 


in inharmonious relations with the white race ; that the excitement 
incident to its free enjoyment hinders him from progress in the 
rudimentary and essential branches of education ; that his advance 
in material wealth is thus delayed and obstructed ; and that obsta- 
cles, which would not otherwise exist, are continually accumulat- 
ing in his path — rendering his progress impossible and his oppression 
inevitable. In other words, that suffrage in the hands of the negro 
is a challenge to the white race for a contest in which he is sure to 
be overmatched ; and that the withdrawal of the franchise would 
remove all conflict, restore kindly relations between the races, place 
the whites on their proper and honorable responsibility, and assure 
to each race the largest prosperity attainable under a Government 
where both are compelled to live. 

The class of men whose views are thus hastily summarized do 
not contemplate the withdrawal of the suffrage from the negro 
without a corresponding reduction in the representation in Congress 
of the States where the negro is a large factor in the apportionment. 
And yet it is quite probable that they have not given thought to 
the difficulty, or rather the impossibility, of compassing that end. 
Under the Constitution, as it is now construed, the diminution of 
representative strength could only result from the States passing 
such laws as would disfranchise the negro by some educational or 
property test, as it is forbidden by the fifteenth amendment to dis- 
franchise him on account of his race. But no Southern State will 
do this, and for two reasons : first, they will in no event consent to 
a reduction of representative strength ; and, second, they could not 
make any disfranchisement of the negro that would not at the same 
time disfranchise an immense number of whites. 

Quite another class — mostly resident in the South, but with 
numerous sympathizers in the North — would be glad to have the 
negro disfranchised on totally different grounds. Born and reared 
with the belief that the negro is inferior to the white man in every- 
thing, it is hard for the class who were masters at the South to 
endure any phase or form of equality on the part of the negro. 
Instinct governs reason, and with the mass of Southern people the 
aversion to equality is instinctive and ineradicable. The general 
conclusion with this class would be to deprive the negro of voting 
if it could be done without impairing the representation of their 
States, but not to make any move in that direction so long as dimin- 
ished power in Congress is the constitutional and logical result of 
a denial or abridgment of suffrage. In the mean while, seeing no 


mode of legally or equitably depriving the negro of his suffrage 
except with unwelcome penalty to themselves, the Southern States 
as a whole — differing in degree but the same in effect — have striven 
to achieve by indirect and unlawful means what they can not achieve 
directly and lawfully. They have so far as possible made negro 
suffrage of none effect. They have done this against law and 
against justice. 

Having stated the position of both classes on this question, I 
venture now to give my own views in a series of statements in 
which I shall endeavor to embody both argument and conclu- 
sion : 

First. The two classes I have named, contemplating the possible 
or desirable disfranchisement of the negro from entirely different 
standpoints, and with entirely different aims, are both and equally 
in the wrong. The first is radically in error in supposing that a 
disfranchisement of the negro would put him in the way of any 
development or progress that would in time fit him for the suffrage. 
lie would instead grow more and more unfit for it every day from 
the time the first backward step should be taken, and he would 
relapse, if not into actual chattel slavery, yet into such a dependent 
and defenseless condition as would result in only another form of 
servitude. For the ballot to-day, imperfectly enjoyed as it is by 
the negro, its freedom unjustly and illegally curtailed, its inde- 
pendence ruthlessly marred, its purity defiled, is withal and after 
all the strong shield the race has against a form of servitude which 
would have all the cruelty and none of the alleviations of the old 
slave system, whose destruction carried with it the shedding of so 
much innocent blood. 

— The second class is wrong in anticipating even the remote pos- 
sibility of securing the legal disfranchisement of the negro without 
a reduction of representation. Both sides have fenced for position 
on this question. But for the clause regulating representation in 
the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution we should to-day 
have the South wholly under the control, and legally under the con- 
trol, of those who rebelled against the Union and sought to erect 
the Confederate Government — enjoying full representation by rea- 
son of the negroes being counted in the apportionment without a 
pretense of suffrage being conceded to the race. The Fourteenth 
Amendment was designed to prevent this, and, if it does not succeed 
in preventing it, it is because of evasion and violation of its express 
provisions and of its clear intent. Those who erected the Confed- 


erate Government may be in exclusive possession of power through- 
out the South, but they are not so fairly and legally ; and they will 
not be permitted to continue in the enjoyment of political power 
unjustly seized — and seized in derogation and in defiance of the 
rights not merely of the negro but of the whites in all other sections 
of the country. Injustice cannot stand before exposure and argu- 
ment and the force of public opinion ; and no more severe weapons 
of defense will be required against the wrong which now afflicts the 
South and is a scandal to the whole country. 

Second. But, while discussing the question of the disfranchise- 
ment of the negro, and settling its justice or expediency according to 
our discretion, it may be worth while to look at its impracticability, 
or, to state it still more strongly, its impossibility. Logicians attach 
weight to arguments drawn ah inconvenienti. Arguments must be 
still more cogent, and conclusions still more decisive, when drawn ah 
impossihili. The negro is secure against disfranchisement by two 
constitutional amendments, and he can not be remanded to the non- 
voting class until both these amendments are annulled. And these 
amendments can not be annulled until two thirds of the Senate and 
two thirds of the House of Representatives of the United States 
shall propose, and a majority in the Legislatures or conventions of 
twenty-nine States shall by affirmative vote approve, the annulment. 
In other words, the negro can not be disfranchised so long as one 
vote more than one third in the United States Senate, or one vote 
more than one third in the House of Representatives, shall be re- 
corded against it ; and if these securities and safeguards should 
give way, then the disfranchisement could not be effected so long 
as a majority in one branch in the Legislatures of only ten States 
should refuse to assent to it, and refuse to assent to a convention to 
which it might be referred. No human right on this continent is 
more completely guaranteed than the right against disfranchisement 
on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude, as em- 
bodied in the Fifteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the 
United States. 

Third, In enforcement and elucidation of my second point, it is of 
interest to observe the rapid advance and development of popular 
sentiment in regard to the rights of the negro as expressed in the 
last three amendments to the Constitution of the United States. In 
1865 Congress submitted the Thirteenth Amendment, which merely 
gave the negro freedom, without suffrage, civil rights, or citizen- 
ship. In 1866 the Fourteenth Amendment was submitted, declaring 


the negro to be a citizen, but not forbidding the States to withhold 
suffrage from hira — yet inducing them to grant it by the provision 
that representation in Congress should be reduced in proportion to 
the exclusion of male citizens twenty-one years of age from the 
right to vote, except for rebellion or other crime. In 1869 the 
decisive step was taken of declaring that ''the right of citizens of 
the United States to vote shall not be abridged by the United 
States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condi- 
tion of servitude." A most important provision in this amendment 
is the inhibition upon the "United States " as well as upon "any 
State " ; for it would not be among the impossible results of a 
great political revolution, resting on prejudice and grasping for 
power, that, in the absence of this express negation, the United 
States might assume or usurp the right to deprive the negro of 
suffrage, and then the States would not be subjected to the forfeit- 
ure of representation provided in the Fourteenth Amendment as the 
result of the denial or abridgment of suffrage by State authority. 
— In this stately progresruon of organic enactments the will of a 
great people is embodied, and its reversal would be one of those 
revolutions which would convulse social order and endanger the au- 
thority of law. There will be no step backward, but under the 
provision which specifically confers on Congress the power to en- 
force each amendment by " appropriate legislation " there will be 
applied, from time to time, fitfully perhaps and yet certainly, the 
restraining and correcting edicts of national authority. 

Fourth. As I have already hinted, there will be no attempt made in 
the Southern States to disfranchise the negro by any of those meth- 
ods which would still be within the power of the State. There is 
no Southern State that would dare venture on an educational quali- 
fication, because by the last census there were more than one million 
white persons over fifteen years of age, in the States lately slave- 
holding, who could not read a word, and a still larger number who 
could not write their names. There was, of course, a still greater 
number of negroes of the same ages who could not read or write ; 
but, in the nine years that have intervened since the census was 
taken, there has been a much greater advance in the education of 
the negroes than in the education of the poor whites of the South ; 
and to-day on an educational qualification it is quite probable that, 
while the proportion would be in favor of the whites, the absolute 
exclusion of the whites in some of the States would be nearly as 
great as that of the negroes. Kor would a property test operate 


with any greater advantage to the whites. The slave States always 
had a large class of very poor and entirely uneducated whites, and 
any qualification of property that would seriously diminish the 
negro vote would also cut off a very large number of whites from 
the suffrage. 

Thus far I have directed my argument to the first question pro- 
pounded, " Ought the negro to be disfranchised ? " The second 
interrogatory, " Ought he to have been enfranchised ? " is not prac- 
tical but speculative ; and yet, unless it can be answered with con- 
fidence in the affirmative, the moral tenure of his suffrage is weak- 
ened, and, as a consequence, his legal right to enjoy it is impaired. 
For myself I answer the second question in the aflarmative, with as 
little hesitation as I answered the first in the negative. And, if the 
question were again submitted to the judgment of Congress, I would 
vote for suffrage in the light of experience with more confidence 
than I voted for it in the light of an experiment. Had the fran- 
chise not been bestowed upon the negro as his shield and weapon 
of defense, the demand upon the General Government to interfere 
for his protection would have been constant and irritating and em- 
barrassing. Great complaint has been made for years past of the 
Government's interference, simply to secure to the colored citizen 
his plainest constitutional right. But this intervention has been 
trifling compared to that which would have been required if we 
had not given suffrage to the negro. In the Reconstruction experi- 
ments under President Johnson's plan, before the negro was enfran- 
chised, it was clearly foreshadowed that he was to be dealt with as 
one having no rights except such as the whites should choose to 
grant. The negro was to work according to labor laws ; freedom 
of movement and transit was to be denied him by the operation of 
vagrant laws ; liberty to sell his time and his skill at their market 
value was to be restrained by apprentice laws ; and the slavery that 
was abolished by the Constitution of a nation was to be revived by 
the enactment of a State. To counteract these and all like efforts 
at reenslavement, the national authority would have been constantly 
invoked ; interference in the most positive and peremptory manner 
would have been demanded, and angry conflict and possibly resist- 
ance to law would have resulted. The one sure mode to remand 
the States that rebelled against the Union to their autonomy was 
to give suffrage to the negro ; and that autonomy will be complete, 
absolute and unquestioned whenever the rights that are guaranteed 
by the Constitution of the Republic shall be enjoyed in every Statfe 


— as the administration of justice was assured in Magna Charta 
— " promptly and without delay ; freely and without sale ; com- 
pletely and without denial." 

James G. Blaine. 


The precision with which Mr. Blaine states his premises and 
the unimpassioned spirit in which he draws his conclusions render 
tlic discussion which he proposes both possible and profitable. His 
statement itself deprives the issue of nearly all its difficulty and 
danger. He lays down with force and clearness his propositions : 

1. That the disfranchisement of the negro is a political impossi- 
bility under any circumstances short of revolution. 

2. That the ballot in the hands of the negro, however its exer- 
cise may have been embarrassed and diminished by what he con- 
siders, erroneously, a general Southern policy, has been to that race 
a means of defense and an element of progress. 

I agree to both propositions. In all my experience of Southern 
opinion I know no Southern man of influence or consideration who 
believes that the disfranchisement of the negro on account of race, 
color, or fonner condition of servitude, is a political possibility. I 
am not now discussing the propriety or wisdom of universal suf- 
frage, or whether in the interests of wise, safe, and orderly govern- 
ment all suffrage ought not to be qualified. What I mean to say 
is, that universal suffrage being given as the condition of our politi- 
cal life, the negro once made a citizen cannot be placed under any 
other condition. And in this connection it may surprise some of 
the readers of this discussion to learn that in 1869 the white peo- 
ple of Mississippi unanimously voted at the polls in favor of rati- 
fying the enfranchising amendment for which Mr. Blaine voted in 
Congress — believing, as they did, that when once the negro was 
made a free man, a property-holder, and a tax-payer, he could not 
be excluded from the remaining privilege and duty of a citizen, the 
right and obligation to vote. And I think I can safely say for 
that people what Mr. Blaine says for himself, that, if the question 
were again submitted to their judgment, they " would vote for 
negro suffrage in the light of experience with more confidence than 
they voted for it in the light of an experiment." 

I concur also in the second proposition, that the ballot has been 
in the hands of the negro both a defense and an education ; and I 


am glad to find this important truth recognized so fully by Mr. 
Blaine. We might possibly differ as to the extent to which the 
defense was needed, or as to the progress which has been made in 
the education. But enough would remain for substantial agreement. 
There can be no doubt that in the unaccustomed relation into which 
the white and colored people of the South were suddenly forced, 
there would have been a natural tendency on the part of the former 
masters, still in possession of the land and of the intelligence of the 
country, and of its legislative power, to use an almost absolute au- 
thority and to develop the new freedman according to their own idea 
of what was good for him. This would have resulted in a race dis- 
tinction, with such incidents of the old system as would have dis- 
contented the negro and dissatisfied the general opinion and senti- 
ment of the country. If slavery was to be abolished, it must, I 
think, be admitted that there could be nothing short of complete 
abolition, free from any of the affinities of slavery ; and this would 
not have been effected so long as there existed any inequality be- 
fore the law. The ballot was, therefore, a protection of the negro 
against any such condition, and enabled him to force his interests 
upon the legislative consideration of the South. 

What I do not think Mr. Blaine fullv realizes, or makes due 
allowance for, is that this sudden transformation, social and political, 
would necessarily produce some jar in its practical operation, and 
that its successful working could be effected only by experienced 
and conscientious men acting on both sides with good sense and 
good temper. Conquest on either side only complicated the prob- 
lem. Its only solution was a sagacious and kindly cooperation of 
all the social forces. The vote in the hands of the negro should 
have been genuinely " a defense," not a weapon of attack. 

The proper use of this defensive power, and its growth into a 
means of wholesome and positive influence upon the character and 
interests of the country, could only be attained by the education of 
the negro. And I agree fully with Mr. Blaine that his practical 
use of the ballot was an important part of that education. I am 
willing to accept the present condition of the South as the result of 
that practical education. Will he ? I say that the negro has been 
using this defense for ten years, that in this time hundreds of thou- 
sands of negroes, born free, have grown to manhood under the ex- 
perience of a political life as open to them as to the old, white 
governing race ; and Mr. Blaine himself asserts that education has 
been more generally diffused among the youth of the colored race 


than among the poorer classes of the whites — whether truly or erro- 
neously we will not here discuss — and the result is, that throughout 
the South the races vote together ; that they have learned where 
their mutual interest lies ; and that, whom God has joined, all the 
politicians have failed to keep asunder. 

I have his essay before me. He denies that this is a legitimate 
result. He insists that the facts prove that the negro vote has been 
cheated by fraud or defeated by force, and that the present condi- 
tion of Southern politics is an unnatural result. I am willing to 
meet this issue on his oAvn principles. I will indulge in neither in- 
vective nor denunciation. I will simply take the late government 
of South Carolina or of Louisiana, or of other States under similar 
rule, and describe it in language that Mr. Blaine may himself select. 
When he has told its history I will ask him whether he would will- 
ingly, as a patriotic American, desire to see his own State, or any 
other of the free States, reduced to such a level? I am not afraid 
of his answer, or that of any man who has been bred under the tra- 
ditions of a virtuous civilization. 

Then I will say to him : This, it is true, is a painful result ; but, 
when you put the ballot in the hands of an ignorant negro majority 
as a means of education and progress, you must be patient while 
they learn their lesson. AVe of the South have borne all this, be- 
cause we knew that the reaction must come. It has come. The 
results which you see to be so bad the negro has seen also. He has 
come back to us with the same blind impulse with which a few years 
ago he fled from us. He may be as ignorant a Democrat as he was 
an ignorant Republican, but years must yet pass before the ballot 
will have educated him fully into self-reliant, temperate citizenship ; 
and what we of the South have borne, our friends of the North 
must bear with us, until the negro has become what we both want 
to make him. This is part of his education. By a system, not one 
whit less a system of force or of fraud than that alleged to exist 
now, he was taken away from his natural leaders at the South, and 
held to a compact Republican vote. Granting — which I do not 
grant — that the present methods are as bad as those then applied, 
the fault lies in the character of the vote. It is not educated to free 
action, and we must educate it to what it ought to be. Take the-' 
history of the race, as stated by Mr. Blaine himself, and is there not 
progress, astonishing progress, when the material with which we are 
dealing is considered ? Force and fraud have been freely charged. 
Suppose it granted. Could any one expect, did any one expect, that 


such a tremendous political and social change — the sudden clothing 
of four million slaves with suffrage and with overruling political 
power — could be made without violent disturbance and disorder? 
Had any such change ever been made in any free State without con- 
vulsion ? Was it to be expected that, when the capital and character 
of a State were placed at the mercy of a numerical majority of igno- 
rant and poverty-stricken voters, it would present a model of peace 
and order ? 

But all this while the ballot has been educating the negro. He 
has learned that he was a power between Republican and Demo- 
crat. He is now learning rapidly that at the South he is a power 
between Democrat and Democrat, and in the late election he made 
that power felt in the result. I would have preferred a much less 
costly tuition ; but, such as it is, it has been paid for, and, if Mr. 
Blaine will patiently trust his own theory, he will find the ballot in 
the hands of the negro the best defense and the best educator. 
But, as the South has been patient, so must he be patient. As the 
South has chafed ineffectually when that vote was all against her 
white people, so will he chafe ineffectually when it is now largely 
for them. 

In his perplexity over the sudden change in the vote of the negro, 
Mr. Blaine has forgotten that, at this stage of its progress, the negro 
vote can not intelligently direct itself. It must and will follow 
some leader. Now, up to 1876 the Republican party, armed with 
all the authority of the Federal Government, supplied those leaders. 
They were strangers in the States they governed. The moment 
that the compact vote upon which their power rested was divided, 
they abandoned their places, and in almost every case left the State 
in which they had ruled. The great mass of colored voters was 
left without guides. In many of the largest counties, where their 
majority was absolute, they were not only not organized, but there 
was not interest enough to print a Republican ticket. The weapon 
of defense which had been given to the negro was thrown away by 
his leaders in their flight, and Mr. Blaine can scarcely complain if 
it was picked up by the Democrats. In saying this I do not wish 
to provoke or renew useless and irritating controversies ; but Mr. 
Blaine's position is, that not only the negro ought not to be disfran- 
chised, but that such a question could never have suggested itself 
but for an illegal control of the negro vote by Southern Democrats. 
My view is that, while the enfranchisement of the negro was a po- 
litical necessity, it could not be effected without subjecting the 


country to such dangerous political aberrations as we have experi- 
enced ; that a wise man would have foreseen them ; and that, in 
fact, they have been less than could reasonably have been antici- 
pated ; that the ballot in the hands of the negro has been a protec- 
tion and an educator ; that with it he has been stronger and safer 
in all his rights than the Chinese have been in California without 
it ; and that the problems it raised are steadily and without danger 
solving themselves through the process of local self-government. 

When Mr. Blaine admits that disfranchisement is impossible 
and that the ballot has been, in spite of all drawbacks, a benefit to 
the negro, he really proves that there is no organic question affect- 
ing great national interests, but simply the subordinate question, 
How rai)idly is the ballot fitting the negro for the full enjoyment 
of his citizenship, and what influence does his vote exercise upon 
the supremacy of one party or the other in national politics ? This 
latter may be an interesting question, but not one which should dis- 
turb either a sound national sentiment or great national interests. 
I do not propose to discus:3 it. I am of opinion that to make the 
negro a free citizen it was necessary first to take him from his mas- 
ter. Tlien it became necessary to take him from the party which 
claimed his vote as absolutely as his master had claimed his labor. 
The next step will be to take him as a class from either party and 
allow him to differ and divide just as white men do. The difficulty 
so far has been that the Republican party desires to retain the 
negro not as a voter, but as a Republican voter. Party politics 
have been directed to keep him at the South in antagonism to the 
white race, with whom all his material interests are identified. 
"Whenever — and the time is not distant — whenever political issues 
arise which divide the white men of the South, the negro will 
divide too. The time will then have come when he can not act 
against the white race as a body or with the white race as a body. 
He will have to choose for himself ; and the white race, divided 
politically, will want him to divide. The use of his vote will then 
be the exercise of his individual intelligence, and he will find friends 
on all sides willing and anxious to enlighten and influence him, and 
to sustain him in his decisions. 

The whole country has passed through a very painful experi- 
ence in the solution of this question, and no one can adequately 
describe the bitterness of the trial of the South ; but she has borne 
it, and it seems to me that a statesman who loves this great country 
of which we are all citizens should feel that the time has come when 


a kindly judgment of each other's difficulties would bring us nearer 
to that unanimity of action which can alone aid the solution of a 
grave social and political problem. I was born and bred a slave- 
holder, born and bred among slaveholders ; I have known slavery 
in its kindest and most beneficent aspect. My associations with 
the past of men and things are full of love and reverence. In all 
history never has a heavy duty been discharged more faithfully, 
more conscientiously, more successfully, than by the slaveholders 
of the South. But, if I know myself and those whom I represent, 
we have accepted the change in the same spirit. No citizen of this 
republic more than the Southerner can or does desire to see the 
negro improved, elevated, civilized, made a useful and worthy ele- 
ment in our political life. None more than they deplore and con- 
demn all violence or other means tending to hinder the enjoyment 
of his elective franchise. The South took him, as he was sent to 
her, a wild and godless barbarian, and made him such that the North 
has been able to give him citizenship without the destruction of our 
institutions. The progress which he made with us as a slave will 
not be arrested now that he is a freeman — unless party passion and 
personal ambition insist upon using him as an instrument for selfish 
ends. And I have joined in this discussion because I regard it an 
honest effort to remove this question from the heated atmosphere of 
political debate, and to ask the conscientious attention of thinking 
men to a problem the wise and peaceful solution of which will be 
one of the noblest achievements of democratic civilization. 

Mr. Blaine assumes that the Southern States as a whole — differ- 
ing in degree but the same in effect — have through force and fraud 
so suppressed the negro vote as to make negro suffrage as far as 
possible of none effect. The statistics of election will show that 
the negro vote throughout the South has not been suppressed. That 
there have been instances of fraud and force I admit and deplore, 
but they have been exceptional. Take them all in the recent elec- 
tion and average them among a population of twelve millions of 
people, and to what do they amount ? The President, in reviewing 
the whole subject after these elections, did allege, and could only 
allege, that in all these States but seven Congressional districts ex- 
hibited results which were altered by either fraud or force. When 
we consider the fact that since the formation of the Government 
there have been but few Congresses, if any, in which there have 
not been elections from all parts of the Union contested on these 
very grounds, and then bear in mind that at no time in our history, 


and in no other part of our country, has there ever been so keen 
and searching a scrutiny into the facts of election as that to which 
the South has been subjected, these exaggerated statements of force 
and fraud must be reduced to their real proportions. 

But suppose the allegation which Mr. Blaine puts as the argu- 
ment of those who advocate disfranchisement be true, viz., that 
the present political condition of the South is practically the rule, 
not of a numerical majority of the whole people black and white, 
but of the whites as one unanimous class ; and let it be conceded 
fully that such a political condition, if it actually exists, is an evil, 
what is the precise nature and extent of that evil ? In the first 
place, it is not pretended that any of these civil rights of person 
and property that negro suffrage was intended to protect have been 
invaded or endangered. Indeed, this seems to be impliedly ad- 
mitted, though not explicitly stated in Mr. Blaine's article. The 
object of the Fifteenth Amendment is fully disclosed by contem- 
poraneous debates. It was to protect and establish free labor in 
the South, in all its new relations of rights and interests, by giving 
to the emancipated laborer the political .means of maintaining those 
rights and interests. Now, will any one deny that this purpose has 
not achieved its fullest consummation under existing conditions? 
Is free labor anywhere on earth more firmly established, more fully 
developed, or more absolute in its demands (even for exaggerated 
remuneration), and more secure and unrestricted in the enjoyment 
of its gains, than in the South ? In all respects, negro freedom and 
negro equality before the law, security of person and property, are 
ample and complete. To protect these, should they be invaded, he 
has the franchise with which a freeman can maintain his rights. 
He may no longer allow it to be used as a tool for the rapacity of 
political adventurers ; but he is perfectly conscious of the fact 
which Mr. Blaine states, that his right to vote is to himself and his 
race a shield and sword of defense. 

The question, then, recurs — conceding, for the sake of argument, 
that in the South political rule represents not the will of mere num- 
bers, but the intellectual culture, the moral strength, the material 
interests, the skilled labor, the useful capital of that entire sec- 
tion, as well as its political experience — is not this result exactly 
what the intelligence, character, and property of the country are 
striving to effect in every Congressional district in the Union, and 
is it not a perfectly legitimate result of placing the ballot in the 
hands of a population unfamiliar with its use, and who are pecu- 


liarly susceptible to the influences which property and brains have 
always exerted in popular government ? 

I anticipate the answer ; it is, that the property and intelligence 
of the other sections seek to control the votes of the masses by 
methods that are legitimate and peaceful, while the Southern whites 
have achieved their power by means which are unlawful and unjust. 
So far I have to some extent, for the sake of argument, conceded 
the assumption that the negro vote has been subjected to the forci- 
ble control of the white race, but that I deny. Reference has been 
made to the great change which the election returns show in the 
negro vote throughout the South. The phenomenon is easily ex- 
plained. Let any intelligent Northern man review the history of 
the State governments of the South for the last ten years under 
Republican rule — their gross and shameless dishonesty, their exor- 
bitant taxation, their reckless expenditure, their oppression of all 
native interests, the social agonies through which they have forced 
all that was good and pure to pass as through a fiery furnace ; the 
character of the men — many of them — they have placed in power ; 
and then say if such a state of things in a Northern or Western 
State would not have been a sure and natural precursor of a Repub- 
lican defeat, so absolute and complete that the very name of the 
party would have become in that State a name of scorn and reproach. 
Then why should not that result have occurred in the South ? Are 
we to assume that the black race have neither instinct nor reason — 
have no sense, no intelligence, no conscience, no independence ; that 
in every Southern State the thralldom of the negro vote to party 
leaders, even when abandoned by them, is so unquestioning and 
abject that no amount of misrule can cut him loose from them or 
teach him the advantage of a more natural and wholesome political 
alliance ? To reason thus is simply to say that the negro is unfit 
for suffrage, and to surrender the argument to those who hold that 
he ought to be disfranchised. 

But this is not true. There are many honest, intelligent, and 
independent men among the negroes in every Southern State. 
There are thousands of them who own property, who cultivate their 
own lands, who have taxes to pay, and who appreciate their vital 
interests in good government. This change in his political rela- 
tions which has been the subject of so much incredulous comment 
is the legitimate result of the experience through which he has 

So far from proving his weak subordination to a hostile influence, 


it demonstrates what Mr. Blaine says, that the ballot-box indeed 
educated him to understand his own interest, and that he has learned 
to use it as an instrument to protect his own rights. To interfere 
with such a result because it does not square with the necessities or 
the ambitions of this or that party, seems to me to be in direct con- 
tradiction to what has been suggested by Mr. Blaine himself. He 
says, "The one sure mode to remand the States that rebelled 
against the Union to their autonomy was to give suffrage to the 
negro," leaving (I venture to add) to self-government the evolution 
of the proper remedies for whatever of evil or error may attend the 
working out of this grave and critical experiment. 

L. Q. C. Lamae. 


In discussing the questions upon which my views are asked, the 
limits prescribed me in the invitation prevent anything more than 
a mere statement of opinion. Even were this otherwise, my pres- 
ent condition forbids me to enter into any extended or elaborate 
argument. Mine must be, therefore, simply a presentation in crude 
form of the views I entertain, and have entertained for some years, 
upon the grave questions submitted for consideration. I shall en- 
deavor to write in a spirit free from all partisanship or sectional- 
ism, with the sole purpose of promoting the cause of truth and the 
welfare of the whole country. 

The first question is, "Should the negro be disfranchised?" 
There has been much agitation of this subject recently — chiefly at 
the North — and many who have hitherto been the most earnest ad- 
vocates of negro suffrage begin to think that the bestowal of this 
privilege upon him has resulted in failure. Those who thus think 
suppose that the withdrawal of the right of suffrage would at once 
restore the ancient and normal condition of things in the country ; 
would reestablish friendly relations between the races of the South ; 
and in so far as it would diminish representation would lessen the 
influence of that section in national affairs. This latter argument, 
I regret to see, has had most weight with a large class, though it 
is inconsistent with a true and catholic patriotism — a patriotism 
which looks to the good of the whole republic, and not to that of 
a limited section. 


But, whatever may be the motives of those who desire the dis- 
franchisement of the negro, the accomplishment of such a result 
has been rendered impossible by the action of the national and 
State governments. Great and startling as have been the political 
mutations of the last few years, the disfranchisement of the negro 
at this or any subsequent period would be more surprising than any 
political event in our past history. The question, therefore, does 
not belong to practical politics, and is a mere speculative one. 
Considering it in the latter aspect, I do not hesitate to answer in the 
negative. Whatever may have been the policy of conferring the 
right of voting upon the negro, ignorant and incompetent as he was 
to comprehend the high responsibility thrust upon him, and what- 
ever may have been the reasons which dictated this dangerous ex- 
periment, the deed has been done and it is irrevocable. It is now 
the part of true statesmanship to give it as far as possible that 
direction which will be most beneficial or least hurtful to the body 

How is this to be accomplished ? 

My answer would be, by educating the negro until he compre- 
hends the duties and responsibilities of citizenship. By " educa- 
tion " I do not mean the mere acquisition of learning, but I apply 
the term in its broadest sense. The possession of the rudiments of 
education — the mere mental training that this implies — so far from 
being always beneficial to its possessor, is often harmful. Many of 
our lately enfranchised citizens make the first use of their newly 
acquired ability to read and write by committing forgery, and here, 
at least, they have manifested a wonderful aj^titude. By educating 
them I mean that their moral nature should be cultivated, pari 
joassit, with their intellect. This moral education is of far greater 
importance than an intellectual one. A man is not necessarily a 
better citizen because he can read and write, nor does the possession 
of these acquirements make him, as a matter of course, more com- 
petent to understand and discharge the duties of citizenihip. I 
doubt whether the citizens of that State which makes its boast 
that more of its people can read and write than in any other gov- 
ernment are equal in art, in culture, and in statesmanship, to the 
Athenians in their palmiest days, who were without these ac- 
complishments the most intelligent and critical of political con- 

As the stability of our institutions depends on the intelligence 
and virtue of our citizens, it is the duty of every patriot to pro- 


mote the cause of true education. Especially is this the case with 
regard to that unfortunate people who, after centuries of servitude, 
were suddenly called to exercise the highest duties of freemen. 
They came to the discharge of these duties utterly ignorant, with 
the prejudices, the habits, and the evils inculcated by a life of 
slavery— merely children of a larger growth, and, like all children, 
full of credulity. It is not to be wondered at, then, that they were 
easily misled by the v»'icked and designing men who flocked to 
the South when she was prostrate. But, in spite of the evil advice 
they have so constantly received, they have on the whole behaved 
better than any other people similarly situated would have done, 
and the whites of the South have no reason to cherish any ill 
will toward the blacks. Nor do they ; and the time is rapidly 
approaching when the colored people will find their best friends 
amono" the tliouditful and considerate whites of the South — a class 
by no means small at present, and which is growing larger and 
stronger every hour. But this digression leads me from the dis- 
cussion of the question under consideration ; and my purpose, as 
declared at the outset, was only to state my opinions, not to enter 
into argument to establish them. 

From the remarks already made, my answer to the first ques- 
tion submitted is easily anticipated : it would be almost impossible 
to disfranchise the negro, and, if possible, it would not be carried 
into effect. The South does not desire to see this done, and with- 
out her aid it can never be accomplished. The negro contributes 
not only to the wealth of the South, but to her political power, 
and she is indisposed to deprive herself of any of her advantages. 

As the negro becomes more intelligent, he naturally allies him- 
self with the more conservative of the whites, for his observation 
and experience both show him that his interests are identified with 
those of the white race here. 

This is the inevitable tendency of things as they now stand at 
the South, and no extraneous pressure can change a result which is 
as sure and fixed as any other natural law. 

The opinions which are announced above have not been hastily 
formed or only recently entertained. They are the result of very 
earnest and long reflection, and as an evidence of this it may not be 
improper, even at the risk of appearing to touch too closely on per- 
sonal matters, to state the position that I have occupied in regard 
to these questions since the close of the war. In 1865, even before 
I had received my parole, I spoke, and was the first man at the 
VOL. cxxviiL — NO. 268. 16 


Soutli who did so, to a large audience of negroes upon the changed 
relations between the two races, and I gave to them the same advice 
that I have given from that day to this. In 1867, in the city of 
Columbia, at the earnest invitation of the colored people themselves, 
I spoke to them again, and upon that occasion advocated qualified 
suffrage. It must be borne in mind that at the time this was done 
some of the most prominent leaders of the Republican party had 
taken decided ground against giving the right of suffrage to the 
negro. It is unnecessary to give all the reasons that induced me to 
take this course : it is sufficient to say that I fully realized that 
when a man had been made a citizen of the United States he could 
not be debarred the right of voting on account of his color. Such 
exclusion would be opposed to the entire theory of republican insti- 
tutions, and I foresaw that, unless the States, while they had the 
right of regulating the elective franchise, prescribed the qualifica- 
tions of their voters, the national Government would intervene, and 
we should have universal suffrage forced ujDon us. My object, 
then, was, by fixing an educational qualification as a prerequisite for 
voting, to allow the most intelligent of the colored people to vote 
at once, and this would have been an inducement to the rest of the 
race to endeavor to qualify themselves for the attainment and exer- 
cise of this privilege by securing the necessary education. The 
admission of the limited number who would thus have been allowed 
to vote at first would have produced no confusion in the machinery 
of the State governments, and the relations between the two races 
would have been friendly and harmonious ; but the course that I 
recommended was not adopted, and we of the South have been sub- 
jected to all the humiliation and crime brought about by recon- 
struction. As the negro is now acquiring education and property, 
he is becoming more conservative, and naturally desires to assist 
in the establishment and maintenance of good government and 
home rule. I have endeavored — and I think not without success — 
to teach him here how to use the vote for his own good, and the 
benefit of the political society in which he lives and with which 
his future prosperity is identified. The result has been shown in 
the last two general elections in this State, where thousands of 
negroes voted with their white friends ; and if any doubt is en- 
tertained of the sincerity of these voters, and any impartial visitor 
from the ^N'orth will take the pains to inquire throughout the State, 
I will venture the assertion that in every locality he will find as 
earnest, as active, and as consistent Democrats among the colored 


people as among the whites, and these colored Democrats are gener- 
ally among the more intelligent of their race. 

Under these circumstances, as the negro is endeavoring very 
generally to qualify himself for the duties of citizenship, the wrong 
of disfranchising him would be as great as that inflicted upon us in 
the first instance, when universal suffrage was given to him while 
he was yet utterly unprepared to exercise it. 

The second question to which my attention has been invited is, 
" Ought the negro to have been enfranchised ? " It may seem in- 
consistent with the views I have expressed in the first part of this 
article to say that I do not think he should have been enfranchised 
at the time and in the manner in which it was done. My first ob- 
jection is, that the mode that was pursued, if not directly unconsti- 
tutional, was certainly extra-constitutional, and I am utterly opposed 
to any violation, direct or indirect, of that instrument. Whenever 
a political party thinks it is necessary, in order to secure its suprem- 
acy, to act outside of the Constitution, and this is permitted by 
the people without rebuke, we may be sure that wfe have entered 
upon that downward plane which every previous republic has trav- 
eled to destruction. The only hope of maintaining our institu- 
tions in their integrity is by a strict observance of the Constitution, 
and no party should be allowed to remain a moment in power 
which countenances in any manner any violation of its sacred pro- 

JNIy next objection to conferring suffrage on the negro, immedi- 
ately upon his emancipation, was that he was totally incompetent 
to exercise or even to understand the rights conferred upon him. 
The injection of such a mass of ignorant and untrained voters into 
the body politic was the most perilous strain to which our institu- 
tions have ever been subjected, and the danger arising from this 
experiment has not yet passed. It was a crime against the whites 
of the South to disfranchise them in large part while enfranchising 
the negro, and thus practically placing all the rights of the former 
at the mercy of newly emancipated slaves. All these difiiculties 
might have been avoided had partial suffrage been adopted in the 
first instance, and the relations between the two races been allowed 
to adjust themselves by the unimpeded action of natural laws. This 
course would have been infinitely better for the negro himself, as it 
would gradually have trained him in the exercise of the rights of 
freemen, and would have prevented that antagonism between the 


two races which has resulted, in so many instances, to the injury of 
the negro. 

Those who assert that the negro should have been enfranchised 
have not hesitated to declare that the Indian, the native freeman of 
America, and the Chinese, who have sought our shores in such 
numbers, should be debarred that right. There seems to be some 
inconsistency in these views, and the advocates of negro enfran- 
chisement should be called on to show why the privilege should be 
granted to him, the newly emancipated slave, and yet denied to 
men who have always been free and who possess more intelligence. 

When the negro was made a citizen, it followed as a logical 
consequence, under the theory of our institutions, that he must be- 
come a voter. My objection to his enfranchisement, therefore, is 
confined to the time when and the mode in which this privilege was 
conferred upon him. 

I have answered these questions with entire frankness, in the 
hope that such a discussion, free from political acrimony and parti- 
san misconceptions, would encourage the calm and conscientious 
consideration of the whole subject. 

Wade Hampton. 


The editor of " The Review " has asked my opinion on the two 
questions discussed by Mr. Blaine. Were these questions proposed 
to the two Houses of Congress, I have no doubt that it would be 
declared, with hardly a dissenting vote, that the negro ought not to 
be disfranchised. On the second question, the formal vote might 
not be unanimous ; but I have no doubt that a large majority would 
declare that the negro ought to have been enfranchised. 

If it shall appear on a new roll-call in 1879 that none are in 
favor of disfranchising the negro, and few are ready to declare that 
he ought not to have been enfranchised, we may reasonably con- 
clude that these measures are gaining strength, and that their wis- 
dom will finally be fully vindicated by the popular judgment. 

But a vote on these questions at this time, by " ayes and noes," 
is misleading, for it does not disclose the real differences of opinion 
which prevail among the people ; nor does it reach the marrow of 
the controversy out of which the questions themselves arise. In 
fact, both of the great parties are influenced by the strongest politi- 
cal motives to maintain at least a profession of friendship for the 


negro. Political interest will therefore prevent a direct assault 
upon the constitutional amendments. It is practically impossible 
to rescind them ; and I believe it is an historical fact that no gov- 
ernment, based on the national will, has ever withdrawn the right 
of suffrage when once granted. 

But below the formal questions which head this article, lies this 
deeper one : Will enfranchisement finally prove a blessing or a curse 
to the negro, and an element of weakness or of strength to our in- 
stitutions ? 

Not long since a citizen of great ability and national prominence 
said to me : " Your party has ruined the Government of our fathers. 
In carrying up the walls of our national temple you have used un- 
tempered mortar ; and your work will crumble and fall, involving 
in ruin the whole structure. The negro belongs to an inferior race ; 
is without intellectual stamina and without any strong, enduring 
qualities of mind. Though he has been on our continent but a 
few generations, he has wholly forgotten the religion, the language, 
and even the traditions of his native country. lie has no perma- 
nent individuality of character. Like the chameleon, he takes the 
color of his surroundings ; and as a voter he will for ever be a 
source of weakness and danger to our institutions." 

This is perhaps the most powerful arraignment of the policy of 
enfranchisement which has been made. In reply it should be said, 
in the outset, that those who denounce the enfranchisement of the 
negro as unwise and dangerous are bound to show a better adjust- 
ment of his status. Even the defenders of the old system will 
hardly deny that the continued existence of chattel slavery was im- 
possible. It was the sum of all injustice to the negro himself and 
a standing declaration of war against the public peace. Its de- 
struction did not arise from mere meddlesomeness on the part of the 
North ; the feeling against slavery was world-wide, and we were 
among the last of modern nations to realize its infamy and remove 
it from our system. 

Between slavery and full citizenship, there was no safe middle 
ground. To strike the shackles from the negro's limbs, to declare 
by law that he should not be bought or sold, scourged or branded 
at the will of his master, and then to leave him with no means of 
defending his rights before the courts and juries of the country — 
to arm him with no legal or political weapons of defense — would 
have been an injustice hardly less cruel to him, and a policy even 
more dangerous to the public peace, than slavery itself. To leave 


the defense of all the rights of person and property of the manu- 
mitted slave to those who had just voted unanimously against his 
freedom, would have been alike dishonorable and cruel. Indeed, 
this experiment was attempted soon after the close of the war. 
While the seceding States were under military control, the white 
people of the South were invited to aid in solving the difficulties of 
the negro problem by electing their own Legislatures and establish- 
ing provisional governments. The result was that in 1865, 1866, 
and a portion of 1867, their Legislatures, notably those of Missis- 
sippi and Louisiana, restricted the personal liberty of the negro, 
prohibited him from owning real estate, and enacted vagrant and 
peonage laws, whereby negroes w^ere sold at auction for the pay- 
ment of taxes or fines, and were virtually reduced to a slavery as 
real as that which existed before the war. 

Congress w^as, therefore, compelled to choose between a policy 
which would have made the negro the permanent ward of the 
nation, and by constant interference with the local laws of the States 
would protect his personal and property rights, or to place in his 
own hands the legal and political means of self-defense. It was a 
choice between perpetual interference with the autonomy of the 
States — a policy at war with the fundamental principles of our Gov- 
ernment, and intolerable to the white populaiton of the South — and 
the risk of admitting to the suffrage four millions of people who 
were, as yet, in a large measure unfitted for its wise and intelligent 
exercise. In reviewing the situation as it existed from 1867 to 1869, 
I can not conceive on what grounds the wisdom of the choice then 
made can be denied. Possibly a plan of granting suffrage gradually 
as the negro became more intelligent would have been wiser ; but 
the practical difficulties of such a plan would have been very great, 
and its discussion at this time can have no practical value. 

The ballot was given to the negro not so much to enable him to 
govern others as to prevent others from misgoverning him. Suf- 
frage is the sword and shield of our law, the best armament that 
liberty offers to the citizen. 

It would be strange indeed if the negro should always use this 
weapon with wisdom and honesty. That he would sometimes be 
influenced by corrupt leaders was inevitable ; but that, in spite of 
all drawbacks, the suffrage has done and is doing much for his 
protection and elevation, is evident from the anxiety shown by all 
political parties to prove themselves his friend. 

His progress under liberty may have disappointed some of his 


over-sanguine friends ; but, in a still more marked way, it has dis- 
appointed the expectations of those who opposed his freedom. 
Dullness of intellect, a low state of morals, a want of thrift and 
foresight— all these were the inevitable results of generations of 
slavery, which afforded no incentive to the development of those 
qualities that make citizens independent, intelligent, and self-reli- 
ant. If the negroes had lost the passion for acquiring property, if 
they had shown themselves unwilling to work, neither liberty nor 
suffrage could have saved them. They would finally disappear, as 
the Indians are disappearing, and for the same reasons. But the 
evidences arc increasing on every hand that they are successfully 
solving the problem of their own future, by a commendable degree 
of industry, and by very earnest efforts to educate their children. 
In these efforts they are outstripping the class known in the days 
of slavery as " the poor whites." AVhile they and their political 
friends had the control of legislation in the Southern States, vigor- 
ous measures were adopted to establish and maintain public schools ; 
and, though these efforts have been greatly discouraged by recent 
State legislation, their thirst for knowledge has not been quenched. 
There is every indication that in the next generation they will show 
a marked advance in intelligence. 

They are acquiring property far more rapidly than their white 
neighbors expected. In the Freedman's Saving Bank alone, the 
failure of which was so calamitous, they had deposited surplus 
earnings to the amount of three millions of dollars. They are 
gradually becoming owners of real estate and of comfortable homes. 
In one county of South Carolina they are now paying $300,000 of 
taxes per annum ; and this is neither an isolated nor an exaggerated 
example. In short, they are gradually gaining those two elements 
of power, " intelligence and wealth," which Senator Thurman says 
will in the long run control the politics of a community. 

As an example of what the negro can do under more favorable 
circumstances than those which have existed in the 'South, I refer 
to the settlement of the Virginia Military Reserve in Ohio, between 
the Scioto and Miami Rivers. Late in the last and early in the pres- 
ent century, many Virginia soldiers of the War of Independence 
removed to their lands in Ohio. Most of them were antislavery 
men by conviction, and brought their slaves with them for the pur- 
pose of manumission. These negroes settled near their late masters, 
enjoyed their friendship and counsel, and did not encounter the pre- 
judices of race and color which they might have met among men of 


Northern birth. Under such conditions they have lived for two or 
three generations. There has been scarcely any admixture of blood 
and no serious collision of interests ; and to-day, in central and 
southern Ohio, their descendants, to the number of several thousand 
families, rank fairly with other intelligent, respectable, and well-to- 
do citizens of the State ; and are, in all respects, greatly superior to 
their Virginia ancestors. 

Much as the negroes of the South have accomplished since 
emancipation, their most unfriendly critics will hardly venture to 
assert that they have had a fair chance to test the influences of free- 
dom and citizenship. Our theory of government is based upon the 
belief that the suffrage carries with it individual responsibility, 
stimulates the activity and promotes the intelligence and self-respect 
of the voter. To accomplish these results the voter must be allowed 
to exercise his rights freely and without restraint. 

Doubtless the mere property rights of the Southern negroes are 
every year being more and more fully recognized by their white 
neighbors ; but in many parts of the South, it is the merest mockery 
to pretend that the suffrage has been free. The spirit of domina- 
tion which slavery engendered has led a large portion of the white 
population to consider the effort of the negro to cast his ballot in 
his own way as an act of intolerable impertinence. Open violence, 
concealed fraud, and threatened loss of employment, in many parts 
of the South, have virtually destroyed the suffrage and deprived 
the negro of all the benefits which it was intended to confer. 

Hitherto, these outrages have been justified or excused on the 
ground that they were provoked by the interference of the national 
authorities with local self-government in the South. But during 
the past two years, there has been no ground even for this poor ex- 
cuse. And now we have a new ground of justification. A leading 
politician of Louisiana, testifying before the Teller Committee a 
few days ago, declared that the murders and other acts of violence 
which attended the late election in that State were provoked by 
"incendiary speeches" of Republican leaders. In his cross-ex- 
amination, this witness favored us with his definition of political in- 
cendiarism. When asked to give examples, he cited the fact that 
a certain campaign orator " had referred to the old days of slavery, 
saying that old men who had been slaveholders, and whose ideas 
were fixed in the past, would not be as likely to respect the rights 
and advance the interests of the blacks as younger men who had 
grown up under the new condition of affairs." Also, in discussing 


the industrial relation of the negroes to their employers, the incen- 
diary orator told the negroes that " they were paying too high rent 
for land, often as much each year as the land would sell for." 
Such discussion the witness considered so dangerous as to justify 
the wratli and violence of the white population against the Repub- 
lican party. 

Until there is one acknowh'dged law of liberty for white and 
black men alike, it is idle to claim that the amendments of the Con- 
stitution are obeyed either in spirit or letter, or that enfranchise- 
ment has had a fair trial. 

The plea of " incendiary speeches " will not be accepted by a 
liberty-loving nation as a justification of murder, violence, or any 
invasion of the rights of citizens, however humble, however black. 
The wisdom of enfranchisement cannot be impeached by prophe- 
sying in advance that it will prove a disastrous failure, and then 
endeavoring ^;ery(;5 aut nefas to make it a failure. 

If the Democratic party does not disclaim and effectively resist 
such outrages and invasions of constitutional rights, we shall again 
witness the deplorable spectacle of parties — divided by geographi- 
cal lines, a solid South and a united North — arrayed in political 

Such a conflict will not only retard the advancement of the 
negro and delay the restoration of national harmony, but it will 
inflict immeasurable injury upon the social and business prosperity 
of the South itself. Emigration follows the path of liberty. Free 
and independent Americans will not voluntarily become citizens 
of a State in which full liberty of debate and of the ballot is not. 

Since the war, it is probable that more emigrants from the North 
and from Europe have settled in Texas than in all the other Gulf 
States combined. And this is because the traditions and sentiments 
of the Texan people have been regarded as more favorable to free- 
dom of personal opinion and political action than those of the 
people of neighboring Southern States. 

If the policy of repression and exclusion, which unhappily pre- 
vails in most of the late slaveholding States, shall be maintained, 
each new census will disclose such a relative loss of population and 
wealth as will prove every way disastrous to their political influence 
and commercial prosperity. But parties will not always divide on 
the color line. I have no doubt that enlightened self-interest will 
ere long lead the people of the South to seek prosperity by making 


the suffrage in fact, as it already is in law, free and safe to all on 
whom the Constitution has conferred it. When that day comes, we 
shall enjoy a national unity which slavery would have made for ever 
impossible ; and the wisdom of enfranchisement will be fully vindi- 
cated. Beneficent as its results have already been, they are des- 
tined to be still more fruitful of good in the future. 

In conclusion, I answer these questions by saying that on 
every ground of private right, of public justice, and national 
safety, the negro ought to have been enfranchised. For the same 
reasons, strengthened and confirmed by our experience, he ought 
not to be disfranchised. Reviewing the elements of the larger 
problem, I do not doubt that enfranchisement will, in the long run, 
greatly promote the intellectual, moral, and industrial welfare of 
the negro race in America ; and, instead of imperiling the safety of 
our institutions, will remove from them the greatest danger which 
has ever threatened them. 

James A. Garfield. 


The questions submitted for inquiry and consideration in the 
paper now presented involve problems of the gravest and most in- 
teresting character that ever engaged the attention of philanthro- 
pists or statesmen. 

It is not the purpose of the undersigned, in taking part in the 
discussion or in connecting himself with it, to enter at this time 
into a consideration of the merits in the abstract of either of these 

The great problem involved in the first is now in a state of 
solution, and it does not seem to be at all practicable or advisable, 
in the midst of this process, to be mooting or answering the reasons 
which led originally to the policy on which it was founded, or the 
propriety of its adoption. 

The matter, according to Mr. Blaine's own assumption, has been 
settled beyond the power of even constitutional remedy. No argu- 
ments drawn ah inconvenienti are allowable ; they are precluded 
by conclusions drawn ah imjyossihili. This is the announcement. 
Then why agitate or disturb it? Should it not, rather, be the 
object of all good citizens, of all parties, and all friends of human- 
ity, whether originally favoring that policy or not, to give it a fair 


trial, with an earnest and hopeful effort for its success, leaving the 
future in this matter, as in other like problems, to take care of 

The discussion of these questions now, therefore, seems to be 
quite as irrelevant as impracticable. The undersigned, however, 
will avail himself of the occasion thus presented to make a few 
general observations upon the paper submitted : 

1. Mr. Blaine, after thus setting forth the perfect inviolability 
of the right of suffrage, constitutionally secured to the colored man, 
uses these very notable words : 

In the mean while, seeing no mode of legally or equitably depriving the 
negro of his suffrage, except with unwelcome penalties to tliemselves, the 
Southern States as a whole — differing in degree, but the same in effect — 
have striven to achieve, by indirect and unlawful means, what they can not 
achieve directly and lawfully. They have, so far as possible, made negro 
suffrage of none effect. They have done this against law and against justice. 

These are grave assertions. Where is the evidence to support 
them ? On them issue is directly joined. 

The charge in substance is, that the Southern States as a whole, 
with common design, have striven to deprive the colored man of 
his right to vote by indirect and unlawful means. Wherein have 
" the Southern States as a whole," or a single one of them, done, or 
attempted to do, any such thing ? States act by their Legislatures, 
courts, and executives. Has it been by legislative acts, or execu- 
tive acts, or judicial decisions? If so, the production of these high- 
handed usurpations is invoked. 

The undersigned speaks mainly of his own State, Georgia. 
That wrongs, and great T\Tongs, have been committed by indi- 
viduals at the polls in that State and in many of the Southern 
States, or perhaps all of them, he does not question — wrongs to 
whites as well as blacks ; but he does question if greater wrongs 
have been perpetrated in the Southern States, in this respect, than 
in the Northern States. " The world is a school of wrong," and 
skilled proficients " swarm about " everywhere. But, that the 
Southern States, in whole or in part, in any way in which States can 
act, have ever arrayed themselves against their own constitutions 
and laws, to say nothing of Federal obligations, in an effort to de- 
prive the colored man of the right to vote, is utterly denied. It is 
true, in Georgia, and perhaps in other States, the constitutional 
requirement of a poll-tax of a dollar for school purposes does prac- 
tically keep several thousand colored voters from the polls ; but it is 


a provision wise and just in its objects, and applies equally to white 
and black. The constitutional provision, also, making conviction 
of felony a forfeiture of the franchise, is likely in its workings to 
exclude a much larger number of colored voters from the polls than 
whites ; but no one questions the justice of such exclusion either 
of whites or blacks. 

The Constitution of Georgia, before the Fifteenth Amendment 
was even proposed, secured the right of suffrage to colored and 
white alike ; and it has been the object of the State government in 
all its branches to maintain this franchise, in its purity and integ- 
rity, from that day to this. It was but yesterday the undersigned 
saw in the Augusta " Evening News " the charge of Judge Snead, 
of that judicial circuit, upon this very subject, an extract from 
which may not be deemed impertinent or irrelevant in this connec- 
tion. It shows to what full, free, and even abusive extent the right 
of suffrage is carried in that State by the colored people. Here is 
the extract : 

After treating of general subjects prescribed by law, the Judge gave the 
following strong points in reference to the freedom of the ballot at the recent 
elections. He said : Outside of all these, I desire to direct your attention to 
one section of the penal code, which was intended to guard the freedom of 
the elective franchise and the purity of the ballot-box. It is section 4,5G9, 
and is in these words : " If any person shall hereafter buy or sell, or offer to 
buy or sell, or be concerned in buying or selling a vote, or shall unlawfully 
vote at any election which may be held in any county of this State, such 
person shall be indicted for misdemeanor, and, on conviction, shall be pun- 
ished by imprisonment and labor in the penitentiary for a term of not less 
than one nor more than four years." 

In this connection I read for your consideration extracts from our city 
papers, which profess to portray certain scenes at the last municipal election 
in Augusta : 

"Money was freely exhibited and offered for votes, and as freely and as 
openly taken. The price of a vote ranged from ten cents to five dollars, 
according to the desire of the purchaser to obtain the vote and the estimate 
put by the seller upon the value of the franchise. Hundreds of votes were thus 
openly disposed of in plain view of everybody. In some instances the voter 
held the ballot at arm's-length with one hand and held out the other for the 
money which was to pay for his vote." — " Chronicle and Constitutionahst." 

" The election-day has passed, and with it a day has gone to record that 
will stand as a foul stain upon the fair name and reputation of a city grown 
old in honor, and up to yesterday unsullied by the bold hand of bare-faced 
bribery and open corruption. Votes were openly bought and sold with 


money and whisky as a price — one hand holding the vote and the other 
Btretclied out for the reward."—" Evening News." 

I know not whether this is true, but it has been published as a part of 
the history of this our day and generation. It could not have escaped the 
observation, and must have excited the solicitude, of many good citizens. If 
true, it is a sad commentary upon the corruption of the times, when the 
purity of the ballot-box Is thus violated in the broad light of day; when the 
elective franchise is made a purchasable commodity, and voters are bought 
and sold as so many herds of cattle. The whole theory of our Government 
is in the opposite direction. It rests upon the free consent of the governed. 
This, at least, should 1)e the practice in every department, from the Federal 
head at Washington, through the various ramifications in the States, down 
to the humblest nmnicipality. The liberty of the citizen, the security of 
property — ay, the whole fabric of society rests for its base upon the free, 
unbought suffrages of the people. . . . Present all parties implicated, wheth- 
er high or low. . . . Let your investigation be strictly impartial — not con- 
fined to one, but extend to all sides — and if your sword, like that which 
flamed at Eden's gate, turns a double edge, let the great blow fall. 

This record of one of our judges truly exhibits the tone of the 
judiciary throughout the State of Georgia. It is needless to add, 
perhaj)s, that the votes which were so openly sold in the market 
were chiefly, if not entirely, those of the lowest class of the colored 
race. The same is true of the elections held near the same time in 
Atlanta, !Macon, and other parts of the State, according to news- 
paper accounts. 

2. Mr. Blaine clearly intimates his own belief, as well as that 
of other original advocates of the enfanchisement of the colored 
race, that ** negro suffrage has failed to attain the ends hoped for 
when the franchise Avas conferred .... failed to achieve anything 
except to increase the political weight and influence of those against 
whom, and in spite of whom, his enfranchisement was secured." 

Pray, what were the ends thus hop^d for ? Without extended 
comment on these sentences, as to the character of the motives actu- 
ating some, at least, of the original advocates of " negro suffrage," 
which are very apparent from the entire passage, it may be pardon- 
able to say that perhaps the present gravamen with them is that 
the colored man does not vote as they expected him to vote ; per- 
haps they may also see from the exhibitions referred to in Augusta, 
Atlanta, Macon, and in other places, that their votes are much more 
easily controlled by money than they supposed they would be. If 
this be intimidation, and depriving the colored people of the ines- 
timable right of voting, then it must be admitted that it is carried 


to a lamentable extent in Georgia, if not in other States, and can only 
be prevented by sucb enforcement of our State laws as Judge Snead 
invokes. It cannot be remedied, as far as the undersigned sees, by 
any proper action of Congress. 
3. Mr. Blaine says : 

The Fourteenth Amendment was designed to prevent this [that is, the 
increased representation of the Southern States in Congress, on the eman- 
cipation of those at the South who previously owed service for life], and, if 
it does not succeed in preventing it, it is because of evasion and violation of 
its clear provisions and of its plain intent. Those who erected the Confed- 
erate Government may be in exclusive possession of power throughout the 
South ; but they are not so fairly and legally ; and they will not be permitted 
to continue in the enjoyment of political power unjustly seized — and seized 
in derogation and in defiance of the rights not merely of the negro, but of 
the whites in all other sections of the country. 

What is really meant here by the reference to the intent of the 
Fourteenth Amendment, and the enjoyment of " political power un- 
justly seized — seized in derogation and defiance of the rights not 
merely of the negro but of the whites, in all other sections of the 
country," by no means clearly appears. Explanation is wanted. 

When and where has any Southern State unjustly seized any 
power or exercised any which is not clearly reserved to it in the 
Constitution ? The real trouble seems to be this : 

After all the clamor against the slave power, so called, under the 
Constitution, before the war, growing out of the three-fifths basis 
of representation, it was found that, on the adoption of the Thir- 
teenth Amendment abolishing slavery, thirty-five representatives 
were thereby added to the South in Congress ; and that, so far from 
the three-fifths feature of the Constitution being an augmentation 
of the political power of the South, it was actually a diminution of 
that power to the extent of two fifths of their colored population. 
It was then that an attempt was made, by the Fourteenth Amend- 
ment, to deprive the Southern States of this increase of political 
power, which they by no means seized or attempted to seize, but 
which came to them rightfully under the Constitution. This at- 
tempt, as has been stated, failed of its object by the Southern States 
putting suffrage upon an equal footing between the blacks and 

Mr. Blaine says that the clear intent and express provisions of 
the Fourteenth Amendment have been evaded and violated by the 
Southern States. 


Where is the proof to sustain this assertion ? Is not the consti- 
tutional right of voting secured as amply to the colored people in 
the Southern States as in the Northern ? If not, let proofs to the 
contrary be adduced. The question is not as to the wisdom of such 
policy, but as to the existence of the fact. 

The public mind seems to be somewhat in a cloud upon this 
subject of representation, and the grounds upon which the colored 
population were rated in the Federal basis, as five blacks to three 
whites, or what is known as the three-fifths basis. 

Before the war the idea seemed to be industriously inculcated in 
certain sections of the country that it was a grant to the South of 
property representation in their slaves. No greater error ever ex- 
isted in the popular mind. This three-fifths principle was first 
agreed on in Congress under the old Articles of Union of the 
States, known as the first Constitution, in 1783. The history of it 
is thitj : There was not any power under the Constitution as it then 
existed to collect taxes by impost, or by any direct means ; and the 
quota of each of the States '.vas apportioned first upon land valua- 
tion in the respective States. This was found to work unjustly ; 
and it was afterward determined that the best basis of taxation was 
population. But it was insisted that the black population was not 
so efficient in the production of wealth, which should be the crite- 
rion in taxation, as the white ; and it would be unjust to make 
the basis of the quota of each State upon its population, without 
considering the character of its population. Some maintained that 
one white man's labor was more productive than that of four 
blacks ; some three ; some two. It was eventually agreed, on the 
motion of Mr. Madison, that three fifths should be the ratio, thus 
cutting off two fifths of the black population. This feature, thus 
originating in the Congress under the old Constitution, was incor- 
porated into the new one, formed in 1787. It was then thought 
that the revenue would continue to be chiefly derived from direct 
taxation, as it had been under the old organization. This feature 
was thus retained at that time upon the principle that taxation and 
representation should go together. Yery soon, however, the reve- 
nues were chiefly raised from imposts, and hence the Southern 
States for all practical purposes lost that power in legislation to 
which they would have been justly entitled upon the principle of 
representation in accordance with population. 

After emancipation, in 1865, the two-fifths restriction ceased to 
exist, as a necessary result. The entire population of the Southern 


States then entered into the count for apportionment, as well as the 
entire population of the Korth. The Southern States, therefore, 
came into the enjoyment of this increased political power not by- 
seizure, but by constitutional right ; and they can not be deprived 
of it except by a wrong not less atrocious than the most wanton and 
illegal seizure could be. 

4. ]yir. Blaine seems to maintain that it was the main object of 
the Fifteenth Amendment to secure the right of suffrage to the 
colored race. 

To a great extent this may be granted as true ; and yet, not to 
the extent which he would seem to argue. That amendment con- 
ferred no right of any kind. It was only intended to restrain the 
States and the United States from denying or abridging the right of 
suffrage on account of " race, color, or previous condition of servi- 
tude." The words are : " The rights of citizens of the United 
States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States, 
or by any State, on account of race, color, or previous condition of 
servitude." This is but an additional covenant between the States, 
imposing restraints and obligations upon themselves, and of course 
takes its place alongside other similar constitutional provisions, 
restraining the power of the States. No State, under this provision 
of the Constitution, can make any discrimination as to the right of 
suffrage within its limits, " on account of race, color, or previous 
condition of servitude " ; nor has any State, South or North, within 
the knowledge of the undersigned, made any such discrimination. 

If there have been violations of the right of suffrage on the 
part of individuals by intimidation, force, violence, or bribery (which 
is by no means denied), the remedy under the Constitution is a plain 
one ; and the undersigned believes that the remedy through the 
courts would be as strongly enforced in the South as in the North. 
In elections to Congress each House is the sole judge of the election 
and returns of its own members. 

If a State were to pass a law making a discrimination, the State 
courts as well as the Federal courts would of course hold such a 
law to be unconstitutional. This prohibition against discrimination 
by any State in the matter of suffrage is analogous to the prohibi- 
tions against any State passing ex post facto laws or laws impairing 
the obligation of contracts, etc. 

The remedy in all such cases is through the courts. The posi- 
tion of Mr. Blaine, that Congress, under its power of " appropriate 
legislation " to carry out all the provisions of the Constitution, can 


take jurisdiction of this clause of the Constitution in any way dif- 
ferent from what is proper in the other prohibitions against the 
States, can not be successfully maintained. The true remedy for 
all these evils, wherever they exist, North or South, is in the courts, 
under such laws as Congress may find it necessary to pass for the 
protection of rights, within its limited jurisdiction and specified 

Alexander H. Stephens. 


Negro suffrage has not been a failure. Only the merest surface 
judgment would so consider it. Though his voting has been crippled 
and curtailed throughout a large part of the South during half the 
time he has been entitled to vote, the negro has given the best evi- 
dence of his fitness for suffrage by valuing it at its full worth. 
Every investigation of Southern fraud has shown him less purchas- 
able than the white man. lie has wielded his vote with as much 
honor and honesty — to claim the very least — as any class of South- 
ern whites ; even of those intellectually his superiors. For nine 
fearful years he has clung to the Republican party (which at least 
promised to protect him) as no white class. North or South, would 
have done. Want and starvation he has manfully defied, and as- 
serted his rights till shot down in their very exercise. Where to- 
day is the Northern white class that would have clung to a party or 
a principle in such peril or at such sacrifice ? If any man knows of 
such, let him testify. I have known Northern politics reasonably 
well for forty years, and my experience has shown me no such 
Northern politicians. 

In law-making the negro has nothing to fear when compared 
with the whites. Taking away the laws which white cunning and 
hate have foisted into the statute-book, the legislation of the South 
since the rebellion may challenge comparison with that of any pre- 
vious period. This is all due to the negro. The educated white 
Southerner skulked his responsibility. Either the negro himself de- 
vised those laws, or he was wise enough to seek and take the good 
advice of his friends. When some one told Sully that Elizabeth 
was not able, but only chose able advisers, " Is not that proof of 
the greatest wisdom ? " said the sagacious minister of Henry IV. 
They say negro Legislatures doubled the taxes. Well, there were 
VOL. cxxviii. — NO. 268. 17 


double the number of children to be educated, and double the num- 
ber of men (one half of them previously things) to be governed 
and cared for. 

The South owes to negro labor and to legislation under negro 
rule all the prosperity she now enjoys — prosperity secured in spite 
of white ignorance and hate. The negro is to-day less ignorant, 
superstitious, and helpless than the same class of Southern white 
men ; yes, than a class of whites supposed to be immeasurably his 

The South would not have disfranchised the negro if his suf- 
frage had been a failure. Its success is what she fears and hates. 
When lawless and violent men attack any element of law and civ- 
ilization, and can only succeed by destroying it, does not that very 
assault prove the value and efficiency of that obstacle to their law- 
less purpose ? 

Negro suffrage gave the helm to the Republican party when 
it represented a principle — that was intelligent. It stood firmer 
against bribery than other Southerners — that was honest. It vindi- 
cated the negro's fitness for legislation — that scattered the fogs 
about negro inferiority. It educated the negro more and more 
every day, and was fast bringing him to a level with the whites of 
the best class — that was death to Southern dreams of future rule 
and treason. 

In those States where either circumstances or the nation have 
secured the negro anything like fair play, his suffrage has been a 
marked success. 

If negro suffrage has been in any particular or respect a failure, 
it has not been the negro's fault, nor in consequence of any want 
or lack in him. If it has failed to secure all the good it might 
have produced, this has been because of cowardice, selfishness, and 
want of statesmanship on the part of the Government of the 
United States. Wliile squabbling over the loaves and fishes of 
office, we have allowed our only friends and allies to face the fear- 
ful dangers of their situation — into which we called them in order 
to save the Union — without the protection of public opinion, or 
of the arm of the Government itself. We have believed every 
lie against them ; fraternized with unrepentant rebels ; and on the 
Senate floor clasped hands dripping with the negro's blood — blood 
shed because, without sympathy or support from us, the negro 
wielded his vote so bravely and intelligently as to make the ene- 
mies of the Union tremble. Does any man imagine that Senator 


Hamburg Butler shoots negro voters because he fears they will not 
rule South Carolina intelligently ! 

Negro suffrage has not, therefore, been a failure, even in any 
trivial degree, from any lack of courage, intelligence, or honesty 
on his part. And let it be remembered how early the Ku-klux 
assaulted him ; how incessant have been the attacks upon him all 
these years; how brave and unquailing has been his • resistance. 
Let it be kept in mind also that, meanwhile, one half of the jour- 
nals of these forty States have been against him ; and seven tenths 
of the Federal officers and the whole organized power of the white 
South. All this while the negro has accumulated property, risen 
in position, advanced marvelously in education, outrunning the 
white man in this race. He has proved himself equal to any post he 
has gained. On the floor of Congress the Southern white has more 
than once quailed before negro logic, sarcasm, and power of retort. 
Nothing has checked his progress or put him down but a hundred 
lawless armed men assailing, at midnight, single men unarmed and 
at disadvantage. And let it be also kept in mind that this same 
lawlessness has shut up courts, silenced white Republicans, scattered 
their conventions, suppressed journals, and driven merchants from 
Southern cities ; so that yielding to it argues no cowardice in the 
negro, since the white of every profession, class, and grade shares 
in the same humiliation. 

Does any man advise the disfranchisement of the white Repub- 
lican because his voting is (to quote Mr. Blaine's picture) " a chal- 
lenge to the Democrats in which he is sure to be overmatched, and 
his disfranchisement would remove all conflict and restore kindly 
relations between the two political parties " ! 

These considerations show the negro's fitness for the vote, and 
therefore that he ought to have been enfranchised. 

Every consideration of policy and statesmanship demanded his 
enfranchisement, the negro being the nation's only ally in an ene- 
my's country. Everything, therefore, that helps him strengthens the 
Union. Equality of condition breeds self-respect. Responsibility 
is God's method of educating men, making them sagacious, pru- 
dent, calm and brave. Power insures consideration to its possessor. 
When a vote in the House of Commons addjed half a million to 
the number of British voters. Lord John Russell sprang to his feet 
and exclaimed, " N'ow the first anxiety of every Englishman is to 
educate the masses ! " It was their having the vote, and so endan- 
gering the state, which awakened that anxiety/ 


Then, again, while the negro remained without the suffrage it 
was a logical inconsistency under our Constitution. The popular 
mind frets at any such inconsistency. It was such intellectual and 
moral fretting against a logical inconsistency — slavery — that pro- 
voked the antislavery movement and gave it strength. To have 
prolonged such a state of things after the war ended would have 
been sure to have stirred angry debate. It was therefore wise and 
necessary to avoid this danger. Finally, the exercise of suffrage 
is the only sufficient preparation for it. You might as well post- 
pone going into water until one has learned to swim, as to put off 
granting suffrage until all the world agrees that a man is fit for it. 

When the North, therefore, gave the negro the vote it did all 
law could do to close the war between two civilizations, the bar- 
barism of the South and the industrial and equal civil polity of the 
North. Of course this was the highest wisdom as well as simple 

After the negro has used his vote as honestly and intelligently 
as the average Northerner, and more bravely, shall we withdraw it 
because the caste prejudice, that hates him and dreads it, lives " un- 
harmoniously " in its sight ? And surely it would be absurd and a 
foul disgrace to take it from him for the single reason that this 
present Administration of our Government can not protect him in 
its exercise ! Would you break up a good locomotive merely be- 
cause one raw and blundering engineer proved himself incapable 
of running it ? 

Every man sees now what very few saw ten years ago (and I 
am glad I was one of those few, ridiculed as we then were), that to 
enfranchise the negro, without doing all the nation could to insure 
his independence, was a wrong to him and disastrous to us. 

Treason should have been punished by confiscating its landed 
property. We all see now that magnanimity went as far as it 
safely could when it granted the traitor his life. His land should 
have been taken from him ; and, before Andrew Johnson's treachery, 
every traitor would have been only too glad to have been let off so 
easily : that land should have been divided among the negroes, forty 
acres to each family, and tools — poor pay for the unpaid toil of six 
generations on that very soil. Mere emancipation without any 
compensation to the victim was pitiful atonement for ages of wrong. 
Planted on his own land, sure of bread— instead of being merely a 
wages-slave — the negro's suffrage would have been a very different 


Then, again, those States should have been held as Territories 
(which United States authority could enter and rule directly, and 
without troublesome questions), until a different mood of mind 
among the whites, and the immigration of Northern men, wealth, 
and ideas, made it safe to trust that section with State govern- 
ments. In his last years, the late Vice-President, Henry Wilson, 
confessed to me that this was the great mistake in that national 
settlement. His only excuse was, that the Republican party did 
not dare to risk any other course in the face of Democratic opposi- 
tion — which only means that the nation was not ready for the 
statesmanship the time demanded. But this surely was not the 
negro's fault, and he should neither be blamed, nor visited with 
disfranchisement, because we were unready, cowardly, and incom- 

But there is no need even now of bating one jot of hope. The 
United States Government is amply able to protect its own citizens. 
Put a man into the Executive chair, and there will be peace at the 
South — not, as now, the despot's peace, when " order reigns in 
AVarsaw " — but quiet homes, streets free from bloodshed, and each 
man safe and unmolested while he exercises all a citizen's rights. 

Mr. Blaine has made it clear that no right in this country is 
more completely guaranteed than the negro's right to vote. It is 
hard to imagine any eclipse of public honor so dark as to make his 
disfranchisement possible. But men who have seen the Dred Scott 
decision and slave-hunts in Northern cities — defended and welcomed 
by journals and pulpits — who have seen Webster bow his majestic 
fame, and Clay try to barter his early good record for infamous 
success — may well hesitate to say that any baseness or sycophancy, 
in a matter touching the negro, is impossible. The South will 
probably never, by law, disfranchise the negro while she remains 
in the Union. But the South does not (practically) disfranchise 
him now from petty spite. It is a well-matured plan. She pur- 
poses to rule this nation or break it. In her present mood union 
between her and the North is as impossible as between Germany 
and France, or Austria and Italy. Until Northern men, capital, 
and ideas, permeate the South, that mood will perpetuate itself. 

But right is stronger than wrong. Barbarism melts and crum- 
bles before civilization. The South can build no wall high enough, 
she can enact no law bitter enough, to bar out the nineteenth cen- 
tury. Even isolated Cuba has no tariff rigid enough to keep out 
justice. The Indian, with right on his side, and so alert that he 


makes it cost the United States one million of dollars to kill an In- 
dian in war, can not resist the wave of civilization. Equally im- 
potent is the South. Whether under our flag, or outside of it, she 
will, in time, recognize the laws of industrial civilization, and accept 
justice as a good bargain, long before she is virtuous enough to see 
its righteousness. 
I Wendell Phillips. 


The negro ought to have been given the franchise if capable by 
nature of exercising it. If not, it ought not to have been conferred, 
and ought to be withdrawn. Hence the two questions presented 
are but one in substance. It ought to surprise no one that this 
question is likely to occupy the public attention again. The subject 
of the abolition of slavery occupied the public mind during many 
years, and was thoroughly discussed before it was acted upon ; and 
no one now denies the wisdom of the decision made upon it. But 
the question of negro suffrage was discussed very little before the 
people prior to its decision ; and neither the Congress which pro- 
posed nor the Legislatures which adopted the amendment were 
elected with reference to the question. And this is equally true of 
the Congress which j^assed the reconstruction act, by which negro 
suffrage was imposed upon the Confederate States, and by which the 
adoption of both the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments was 

It is certainly proper for the people to reconsider a measure 
adopted so precipitately for the purpose of enabling one section of 
the country to hold the other in subjection, in violation of the 
Constitution and of the fundamental principle of local self-govern- 
ment, and which has never had the sanction even of the Northern 
people in any form (for the power to accomplish it was obtained 
from them by denying that any such action was contemplated). 

Having been accomplished according to the forms of law, it is 
the Constitution, and can only be revoked by observing the same 
forms ; but if negro suffrage is pernicious to the public welfare, 
degrades suffrage, fosters corruption, defeats responsibility, strength- 
ens the money power, and endangers the liberty of the race which 
established representative government, and so far alone has shown 


capacity to maintain it, that capacity itself gives absolute assurance 
that it will be revoked. 

Nor will it be long before the subject may be properly consid- 
ered. The escape of the Southern States from the thralldom which 
negro suffrage was devised to impose upon them has defeated the 
object for which it was devised, and its authors now find that, in- 
stead of being an instrument to perpetuate their power, it serves 
only to increase that of their adversaries. They still clamor about 
outrages upon it ; but this is only to arouse the jealousy of the 
North to consolidate it against the power they have strengthened 
at the South. If defeated in this, the sectional issue will be elimi- 
nated from our politics, aud the subject of negro sulfrage will cease 
to have any relation to sectional power and national politics, and 
will probably be allowed to be considered upon its merits by the 
communities affected by it. In that event, the only advocates of 
negro suffrage will be the representatives of the planters and other 
possessors of wealth, who will control their labor and their votes. 
They alone will have any political interest to promote by maintain- 
ing it. 

Our fathers, North and South, were all emancipationists, and 
refused to put the word " slave " in the Constitution, not wishing a 
trace of it to appear in that instrument ; but not a man among 
them contemplated making the negro a voter. Mr. Jefferson, who 
predicted that slavery would go out in blood unless provision was 
made for emancipation, saw also that the races could not live to- 
gether as equals. " Nothing is more certainly written in the book 
of fate," he said, " than that these people are to be free ; nor is it 
less certain that the two races, equally free, can not live in the same 
government. N^ature, habit, opinion, have drawn indelible lines of 
distinction between them. It is still in our power to direct the pro- 
cess of emancipation and deportation, and in such slow degree as 
that the evil will wear off insensibly, and their place be filled up, 
pari passu, by free white laborers. If, on the contrary, it is left to 
force itself on, human nature must shudder at the prospect held 
up." Prior to the war, Jefferson was the recognized exponent of the 
true principles of our Government, in theory and practice. He had 
extinguished the opposing party, and every succeeding Administra- 
tion professed to be guided by his principles. And his counsel would 
have been followed with respect to slavery, as it had been upon 
other important subjects, but that a new prophet arose in the South, 
who, by firing the hearts of its politicians with a fatal ambition in 


connection with it, so changed the morale of Jefferson's party as to 
make slavery its most powerful element, and his teachings on the 
subject to be pronounced " folly and delusion " ; and slavery, in- 
stead of being " a moral and political evil," as he had taught, and 
as hitherto universally held at the South, became " the most safe 
and stable basis for free government in the world." We know the 

Is there any better reason for accepting the new revelation, de- 
claring it to be " folly and delusion " to say that Nature has draAvn 
such indelible lines of distinction between the black and white races 
that they can not live as equals in the same government, if that gov- 
ernment is to be a free government f It was inspired by the lust of 
sectional power, and relies for success upon the triumph of military 
over civil institutions. It was established by the sword, in viola- 
tion of the Constitution. More than half the white people were 
disfranchised, and all their leading men, and the blacks, num- 
bering 4,000,000, were given more votes than the whites, number- 
ing about 8,000,000 — the official returns of registration in nine of 
the States giving the blacks 631,746 votes, and the whites 585,769. 
General Grant, under whose direction the work was done, reported 
that the combined negro vote was indispensable ; that the negroes 
were incapable of making that combination of themselves ; and that 
the whites sent there from the North to direct that combination 
could not remain there for that purpose unless supported by the 
army. The military became the governing power. The part of the 
negro was that of " dummy " in the game. They were beaten at 
all points without regard to numbers, except where the military 
and United States deputy-marshals took charge and voted them. 
Negro suffrage has, in fact, never existed. It has been only an 
expensive process of registering and supervision by the military to 
have pieces of paper put in their hands and deposited as directed 
by the white men sent down to combine and lead them. 

These were, necessarily, persons of the worst class ; p,nd the result 
was the most disgraceful chapter in our history. Th^^ votes of the 
blacks, which made the Republican candidate President, installed 
these harpies in the government of the States ; they loaded the States 
with 1200,000,000 of debt, while exacting the most exorbitant taxes 
from the impoverished people, and gave entire immunity to crime. 
The demoralization thus infused into our system infected the Fed- 
eral Government. The enormous expenditure during Grant's two 
terms — being, exclusive of all payments growing out of the war, 


greater than the expenditure from 1789 to 1861, including that on 
account of the war of 1812, the Algerine war, the Mexican war, all 
our Indian wars, and the purchase money of Louisiana and Florida — 
is traceable to the irresponsible government thus established. And 
80 is the corruption which has pervaded the Government, not yet 
fully exposed, but which the whisky ring, the Indian ring, and the 
multitude of similar blotches accidentally brought to the surface 
show to have permeated all departments. 

Tlie British Government learned from the American Revolution 
what, in their eagerness for power, our Republican politicians lost 
sight of — that it was " neither possible nor desirable " to govern the 
English-speaking race against their will. And hence, instead of sup- 
pressing representative government in Canada after the rebellion, as 
our rulers did in the South, Earl Grey, in his instructions to Lord 
Elgin, the Governor-General, said that " it could not be too dis- 
tinctly understood that it is neither possible nor desirable to carry 
on the government of any of the British Provinces in North Amer- 
ica in opposition to the opinion of its inhabitants." To shame the 
great Republic and to foment discord in it, the blacks in Jamaica 
were also enfranchised to elect a Parliament, while all the working- 
men in England were denied that privilege ; but the incapacity of 
the negro for that function was so fully demonstrated that it had 
to be withdrawn. This fact ought to silence those among us who, 
for mere party objects, have lately echoed the ruling class in Eng- 
land in attributing the universal repugnance of our people, North 
and South, before the war, to mere pride of race. Having tried 
the experiment themselves where there was no race conflict, and 
found it a lamentable failure, they have themselves vindicated the 
wisdom of our fathers and the good sense of our people. 

Many honest and true men have been persuaded that it was 
necessary to give the ballot to the negro to secure him his free- 
dom. They assumed that he could acquire the knowledge and 
character which qualified him to use it. Knovf ledge sufficient he 
might acquire, but not the independence and the self-reliance. It 
was for want of these qualities that he was for centuries an hereditary 
bondman in America, and did not himself strike the blow which 
made him free. Indeed, all the acts passed to make him a voter, 
from the reconstruction to the enforcement act, and all the speeches 
of their advocates, recognize his want of every essential quality of 
a voter by treating him as not fit to be the master but only to be 
the ward of the Government. On this theory the Freedman's Bu- 


reau was established to remove liim from the influence of the white 
race, General Grant empowered to sustain the men sent to mass 
them against the white people, and for this reason it is assumed that 
the Republicans can not be legally beaten where the negroes are in 
the majority. The Republicans knew that the race which takes so 
largely the direction of public affairs of this continent would con- 
trol the negro unless the Government interposed to prevent it. And 
the recovery of political power in all the Southern States, in spite 
of this interposition, shows that he is more feeble than he was ac- 

And the fact that Wade Hampton had five thousand blacks, uni- 
formed with red shirts, marching in procession during his canvass 
for Governor in 1876, received all the votes for that office in 1878, 
and all but two for Senator in 1879, will satisfy any mind open to 
the truth that this is not due to intimidation. 

Hampton is the type of a class to whom the negro naturally 
gives fealty ; and enfranchisement will, for a time at least, be a 
grant of vast political power to them when the Northern politicians 
shall discontinue the attempt to use him as the instrument of their 
power, and make it possible for the local politicians to avail them- 
selves of his aid. Hampton, the boldest of this class, long ago 
avowed his pleasure at the grant, and has availed himself of it. 
Others will soon follow his example. 

As it is manifest that, as followers of this class, the negro can be 
better protected than as the instrument of Northern dominion over 
the people of the South, it ought to be the policy of all who have 
any true feeling for him to discountenance the new crusade which 
the Northern politicians are preparing to preach in 1880. But 
while under the guidance of a class of leaders who are respon- 
sible to public opinion, they could be trained, if it were possible to 
train them at all, to the exercise of government, no such result can 
be expected. It would be as reasonable to expect them to develop 
wings by training. The negro is not a self-governing nature. He 
is of the tropics, where, as Montesquieu observes, despotism has pre- 
vailed in all asces. His nature, of which this form of Government 
is the outgrowth, is not changed by transplanting, more than that 
of the orange or the banana. Hence to incorporate him in our sys- 
tem is to subvert it. His nominal enfranchisement is but a mode of 
disfranchising the white man, and makes them equals indeed, but 
only as the subjects of irresponsible power. For this reason Mr. 
Jefferson believed it would not be submitted to. We have seen 


that lie understood the American people better than Mr. Calhoun. 

It remains to be seen whether he knew them better than Mr. 

Thaddeus Stevens. 

Montgomery Blair. 


The editor of "The North American Review" has asked me 
to express some views upon Mr. Blaine's article on the questions, 
" Ought the Negro to be disfranchised ? Ought he to have been 
enfranchised ? " and also my views upon the questions themselves. 
It is almost impossible for me to comply with this request. I am 
in Washington for a few days only, and my engagements will not 
allow me to attempt a review of Mr. Blaine's article. Upon the 
two questions I can only express my opinions, without much argu- 
ment or illustration. 

It is not yet ten years since the right to vote was conferred upon 
the negro by constitutional provision. That period is too short to 
allow such test of the wisdom of the measure as would justify its 
abrogation, llie constitutional amendment is supposed to have 
been the deliberate and well-considered act of the people. It must 
not be regarded as an ordinary legislative measure, to be repealed 
or modified " for light and transient causes." To make such a 
change of the Constitution because an election in one section of the 
country has not resulted as some might have desired or expected, is 
to treat the most solemn act of the people with contempt, and to 
weaken the force and impair the authority of the Constitution 
itself. Opposition to negro enfranchisement ten years ago does not 
now require an effort to strike the Fifteenth Amendment from the 
Constitution. Any provision of the Constitution should be regard- 
ed as fixed and permanent, and not to be disturbed, except upon the 
test of such experience as would justify a change of Government 
itself, because of great and permanent evils. It was not reason- 
able to suppose that the two races would at once and without dis- 
cord adjust themselves to the new relations prescribed and fixed by 
the constitutional amendments. In the establishment of civil and 
political changes so radical and extended, strife and discord for a 
time were inevitable. 

The experiment by which the negro is now being judged has 
not been a fair one. When enfranchised, he was made to feel that 


he owed servitude to a party ; through the agency of United States 
officials and of the Freedmen's Bureau, and by means of secret 
leagues, the entire negro vote was consolidated into a party inspired 
by a distrust of, if not hostility to the white race. The color line 
was distinctly drawn. They were taught to distrust every sugges- 
tion made by their former masters for their political welfare, and 
to give their utmost confidence and support to a class of men who 
most unscrupulously used the power so acquired to promote their 
own selfish ends. The result was the introduction in many South- 
ern States of the most objectionable practices. Bribery and cor- 
ruption fastened themselves upon the public service. The State 
governments became the worst possible. The increase of State in- 
debtedness was frightful. Taxation threatened to swallow up not 
only the earnings but also the accumulations of the people. Men 
contemplated approaching ruin with horror. Judged by these 
results, negro enfranchisement was worse than a failure, it was a 
gigantic evil. 

In that condition of the country, excesses and abuses did un- 
questionably occur. No foresight, no patience, no policy could have 
averted them. The fierceness of the struggle for better government 
was necessarily proportioned to the enormities that were practiced 
upon the people. The efl^orts of the people to promote their own 
welfare soon passed from personal conflict, and neighborhood 
struggle, to the adoption of measures and policies of safety and 
reform. The colored people were appealed to. They were told 
that their own welfare, as well as that of the white race, required 
economy and reform ; that the value of the products of their labor 
depended upon measures that would reduce taxation. These ap- 
peals were heard and heeded. In great numbers, by their influence 
and their votes, they contributed to the changes in men and mea- 
sures that experience has shown were essential to the welfare of all 
classes, especially of producers. 

Perhaps in this connection it is proper to refer to the State of 
South Carolina as an illustration. Next to that of Louisiana, her 
government was the worst, and the condition of her people the most 
intolerable. Her present able chief Executive, in his canvass for 
the office, addressed the colored voters in the language of argument 
and of patriotic appeal. He and his cause proved stronger than 
party control. They came to his support. They contributed to 
his election. Without their help, no change could have occurred. 
The reform that followed was complete. The men who had ruled 


and ruined the State, and who had oppressed all her industries, met 
their just punishment in prison, or sought safety in flight. Honesty 
took the place of fraud, and economy displaced profligate expen- 
diture. Judged by such results, negro enfranchisement is not alto- 
gether a failure. The results in Georgia are equally instructive. 
The evil influences that controlled the negro vote in other localities 
were never so strong in that State ; and at an earlier day legitimate 
and good authority prevailed. A beautiful illustration of the har- 
mony that has come to exist between the races occurred in one of 
the cities of that State but a week since. The negro vote had con- 
tributed to the election of an able Representative in Congress. He 
died, and, when his remains were taken home for interment, they 
who had helped to elect helped also to bury him. They appeared 
in the funeral procession in organized companies of the militia, in 
full uniform, and carrying the arms of the State. At the polls and 
at the grave the races united in the expression of confidence, and 
in tributes of respect toward one whose family was connected with 
the history of the State. It. is a pleasing reflection that when thus 
restored to its proper condition society has become relieved, in a 
great degree, of the strife and bloodshed that attended the govern- 
ment of the people of the States by outside poAver. 

It is but recently that we have heard the demand for the with- 
drawal of the right to vote from the negro, and for a reduction of 
the representation allowed to the Southern States. The demand 
comes only from those who relied upon their power to control him 
as a political machine. It can not be said that his late indepen- 
dent action in harmony with that of the white people is wrong. 
Beyond di8})ute, it was well for all the people of South Carolina, 
both white and black, and for the people of the whole country, 
that Governor Hampton was successful, and that the corrupt power 
was overthrown. Peace is assured. Labor is secure and encour- 
aged. Calmly, quietly, and intelligently a large body of the ne- 
groes have joined the whites to correct intolerable evils. This 
was fully and well stated by a late colored United States Sen- 
ator from Mississippi, in a letter written to the President shortly 
after the bad government had been overthrown in that State. The 
" Solid South " is the result of the union and harmony of the races, 
and of their united effort for economy and reform. 

I am not able to see why the subject of negro suffrage should be 
discussed. It must be known to all that the late amendments will 
not be, can not be, repealed. There is but the duty upon all to 


make the political power now held by the enfranchised race the 
cause of the least evil, and of the greatest possible good, to the 
country. The negro is now free, and is the equal of the white man 
in respect to his civil and political rights. He must now make his 
own contest for position and power. By his own conduct and suc- 
cess he will be judged. It will be unfortunate for him if he shall 
rely upon political sympathy for position, rather than upon duties 
well and intelligently discharged. Everywhere the white race 
should help him, but his reliance must mainly be upon himself. 

Thomas A. Hendricks. 

Conclusion, — Me. BLAINE. 

At the instance of the Editor of the " North American Review," 
and not by request or desire of mine, the brief article which I wrote 
in regard to negro suffrage was submitted to the gentlemen who 
have replied to it, and in turn their articles have been submitted to 
me. I have now the privilege of rejoinder, and the whole series of 
papers thus assumes the phase of a connected discussion. 

With the exception of Mr. Wendell Phillips and General Gar- 
field, the replies are from gentlemen identified with the Democratic 
party, and distinguished and influential in its councils. General 
Garfield is a Republican, and has taken prominent and honorable 
part in all the legislation respecting negro suffrage. His views are 
so entirely in harmony with my own that nothing is left me but to 
commend his admirable statement of the case. Mr. Phillips is nei- 
ther a Republican nor a Democrat, but reserves to himself the right 
— a right most freely exercised — to criticise and condemn either party 
with unsparing severity, generally bestowing his most caustic denun- 
ciation upon the party to which he most inclines. It is by this sign 
that we feel occasionally comforted with the reflection that Mr. Phil- 
lips still has sympathies with the Republican party, and still indulges 
aspirations for its ultimate success. 

The arraignment of the Republicans at this late day by Mr. 
Phillips, because they did not reduce the Confederate States to 
Territories and govern them by direct exercise of Federal power, is 
causeless and unjust ; and it can not certainly influence the judg- 
ment of any man whose memory goes back to 1 866-' 67. For I 
assume that if anything, not capable of demonstration, is yet an 


absolute certainty, it is that such an attempt by the Republican 
party would have led to its utter overthrow at the initial point of 
its reconstruction policy. The overthrow of the Republican party 
at that time would have restored the Confederate States to full 
power in the Union without the imposition of a single condition, 
without the exaction of a single guarantee. All the inestimable 
provisions of the Fourteenth Amendment would have been lost : 
its broad and comprehensive basis of citizenship ; its clause regu- 
lating representation in Congress and coercing the States into grant- 
ing suflFrage to the negro ; its guarantee of the validity of the war 
debt of the Union and of pensions to its soldiers and their widows 
and orphans ; its inhibition of any tax by General or State Govern- 
ment for debts incurred in aid of the rebellion or for the emancipa- 
tion of any slave ! These great achievements for liberty, in addi- 
tion to the Fifteenth Amendment, vrould have been put to hazard 
and probably lost, could Mr. Phillips have had his way, in a vain 
struggle to reduce eleven States — four of them belonging to the 
original thirteen — to the condition of Territories ; thus committing 
the General Government to a policy as arbitrary and as sure to lead 
to corruption and tyranny as the proconsular system of Rome. 

And as if the territorial policy w^cre not enough to have destroyed 
the Republican party at that time, Mr. Phillips would have plunged 
us into the wild, visionary, and unconstitutional scheme of confiscat- 
ing the land of the rebels and giving it to the freedmen. Confisca- 
tion laws were passed by Congress during the hottest period of the 
war ; but even then, when passions were at the highest, no enact- 
ment was proposed which did not recognize the express limitation 
of the Constitution that in punishing treason there should be no 
** forfeiture except during the life of the person attainted." The 
Republican party has been flippantly accused by its opponents of 
disregarding the Constitution, but I venture to say that there is no 
parallel in the world to so strict an observance of written law dur- 
ing a critical and mighty war as was shown by the Republicans 
throughout the protracted and bloody struggle that involved the 
fate of free government on this continent. It is impossible, there- 
fore, that the Republican party could have adopted the policy which 
Mr. Phillips commends ; and impossible that it could have succeeded 
if the attempt had been made. 

Of the replies made by the other gentlemen, identified as they 
have been and are wdth the Democratic party, it is noteworthy that, 
with the exception of Mr. Blair, they agree that the negro ought 


not to be disfranchised. As all of these gentlemen were hostile to 
the enfranchisement of the race, their present position must be 
taken as a great step forward, and as an attestation of the wisdom 
and courage of the Republican party at the time they were vio- 
lently opposing its measures. This general expression leaves Mr. 
Blair to be treated as an exception, and for many of his averments 
the best answer is to be found in the suggestions and concessions 
of his Democratic associates. I need not make an elaborate reply 
to Mr. Blair, when he is answered with such significance and such 
point by those of his own political household. It is one of the 
curious developments of political history that a man who sat in the 
cabinet of Abraham Lincoln and was present when Emancipation 
was decreed should live to write a paper against the enfranchise- 
ment of the negro, when the Vice-President of the Rebel Con- 
federacy and two of its most distinguished officers, are taking the 
other side ! 

Of Governor Hampton's paper it is fair to say that it seems to 
have been written to cover a case ; its theory and application being 
adapted to the latitude of South Carolina, and to his own political 
course. Mr. Hampton is a man of strong parts, possessing courage 
and executive force, but he has been in the thick of the fight, and 
has had personal ambitions to gratify which may not place him 
in history as an impartial witness. His personality protrudes at 
every point, and his conception of what should be done and 
what should be undone at the South is precisely what is included 
in his own career. When Mirabeau was describing all the great 
qualities that should distinguish a popular leader, the keenest of 
French wits said he " had forgotten to add that he should be pock- 

Mr. Lamar offers a contrast to Governor Hampton. He gen- 
eralizes and philosophizes with great ability, and presents the strange 
combination of a " refined speculatist," and a trustful optimist — em- 
bodying some of the characteristics of Mr. Calhoun whom he de- 
voutly followed, and of Mr. Seward, whom he always opposed. Mr. 
Lamar is the only man in public life who can be praised in New 
England for a warm eulogy of Charles Sumner, and immediately 
afterward elected to the Senate as the representative of the white- 
line Democrats of Mississippi. And yet, inconsistent as these posi- 
tions are, it is the dream of Mr. Lamar's life to reconcile them. He 
is intensely devoted to the South ; he has generous aspirations for 
the Union of the States ; he is shackled with the narrowing dogma 


of State rights, and yet withal has boundless hopes for an imperial 
republic whose power shall lead and direct the civilization of the 
world. Hedged in by opposing theories, embarrassed by forces 
that seem irreconcilable, Mr. Lamar, probably more than any other 
man of the Democratic party, gives anxious and inquiring thought 
to the future. 

Of Mr. Stephens and Mr. Hendricks it may be said that in their 
treatment of the question, one aims to vindicate the course of his 
native Georgia ; the other to gain some advantage for the Demo- 
cratic party of the nation. Mr. Stephens has the mind of a meta- 
physician, led astray sometimes in his logic and sometimes in his 
facts, but aiming always to promote the interest of the State to 
which he is devoted. Mr. Hendricks is an accomplished political 
leader, with large experience, possessed of tact and address, and 
instinctively viewing every public question from its relation to the 
fate and fortune of his party. Mr. Stephens argues from the stand- 
point of Georgia ; IMr. Hendricks has in view the Democracy of the 

These Democratic leaders unite in upholding the suffrage of the 
negro under existing circumstances, but each with an obvious feel- 
ing that some contradiction is to be reconciled, some record to be 
amended, some consistency to be vindicated. They all unite, how- 
ever, on the common ground of denouncing the men who controlled 
the negro vote at the outset in the interest of the Republican party ; 
and the underlying conclusion, not expressed but implied, is that if 
the military force had been absent and the persuasion of the Freed- 
men's Bureau had not been applied, the negroes would have flocked, 
as doves to their windows, to the outstretched and protecting arms 
of the Democratic party. This seems to me to be sheer reckless- 
ness of assumption ; the very bravado of argument. Why should 
the negro have been disposed to vote with the Democratic party ? 
Mr. Hendricks says he was made to feel that " he owed servitude to 
a party through the agency of United States officials and the Freed- 
men's Bureau." But can Mr. Hendricks give any possible reason 
why the negro should have voted with the Democratic party at 
that time ? Does not the record of Mr. Hendricks himself as the 
leader of the Democratic party in the Senate show the most conclu- 
sive reasons why the negro should have voted with the Republicans ? 

Mr. Hendricks argued and voted in the Senate against emanci- 
pating the negro from helpless slavery ; when made free, Mr. Hen- 
dricks argued and voted against making him a citizen ; citizenship 
VOL. cxxvni. — NO. 268. 18 


conferred, Mr, Hendricks argued and voted against bestowing suf- 
frage ; and he argued and voted against conferring upon the negro 
the most ordinary civil rights, even inveighing in the Senate against 
giving to colored men who were eligible to seats in Congress the 
simple privilege of a seat in the horse-cars of Washington in com- 
mon with white men. Conceding to the negro the ordinary in- 
stincts and prejudices of human nature, it must have required the 
combined and energetic action of the United States army, the Fed- 
eral officers, and the Freedmen's Bureau, to hold him back from his 
impulsive and irrepressible desire to vote with Mr. Hendricks and 
the Democratic party ! 

I do not use this argumentum ad hominem in any personal or 
offensive sense toward Mr. Hendricks. His position was not differ- 
ent from his associates and his followers in the Democratic party on 
all the questions where I have referred to his votes and his speeches. 
Mr. Lamar occupied the same ground practically, and so did Mr. 
Stephens and Governor Hampton. Indeed, the entire Democratic 
party opposed legislation for the amelioration of the negro's con- 
dition at every step, and opposed it not with the mere registry 
of negative votes, but with an energetic hostility that too often 
assumed the phase of anger and acrimony. Emancipation from 
slavery, grant of citizenship and civil rights, conferring of suffrage, 
were all carried for the negro by the Republicans against a protest- 
ing and resisting Democracy. Democratic Senators and Represent- 
atives in Congress fought all these measures with unflagging zeal. 
In State Legislatures, on the stump, in the partisan press, through 
all the agencies that influence and direct public opinion, the Demo- 
crats showed implacable hostility to each and every step that was 
taken toward elevating the negro to a better condition. So that it 
was inevitable that the negro who had sense enough to feel that he 
was free, who had perception enough to know that he was a citizen, 
who had pride enough to realize that he was a voter, felt and knew 
and realized that these great enfranchisements had been conferred 
upon him by the persistent energy of the Republican party, and in 
spite of the efforts of an embittered and united Democracy. Is 
further statement necessary to explain why the negro should have 
cast his vote for the Republican party when a free ballot was in his 
hands ? It can be readily understood why he may now cast a vote 
for the Democratic party when he is no longer allowed freedom of 
choice, when he is no longer master of his own ballot. 

It must be borne in mind that the Republicans were urged and 


hastened to measures of amelioration for the negro by very danger- 
ous developments in the Southern States looking to his reenslave- 
ment, in fact if not in form. The year that followed the accession 
of Andrew Johnson to the Presidency was full of anxiety and of 
warning to all the lovers of justice, to all who hoped for "a more per- 
fect Union " of the States. In nearly every one of the Confederate 
States the white inhabitants assumed that they were to be restored 
to the Union with their State governments precisely as they were 
when they seceded in 18G1, and that the organic change created by 
the Thirteenth Amendment might be practically set aside by State 
legislation. In this belief they exhibited their policy toward the 
negro. Considering all the circumstances, it would be hard to find 
in history a more causeless and cruel oppression of a whole race 
than was embodied in the legislation of those revived and unrecon- 
structed State governments. Their membership was composed 
wholly of the " ruling class," as they termed it, and in no small 
degree of Confederate officers below the rank of brigadier-general, 
who sat in the Legislature :n the very uniforms which had distin- 
guished them as enemies of the Union upon the battle-field. Lim- 
ited space forbids my transcribing the black code wherewith they 
loaded their statute-books. In Mr. Lamar's State the negroes were 
forbidden, under very severe penalties, " to keep firearms of any 
kind " ; they were apprenticed, if minors, to labor ; preference being 
given by the statute to their " former owners." Grown men and 
women were compelled to let their labor by contract, the decision 
of whose terms was wholly in the hands of the whites ; and those 
who failed to contract were to be seized as " vagrants," heavily 
fined, and their labor sold by the sheriff at public outcry to the 
highest bidder. The terms " master " and " mistress " continually 
recur in the statutes, and the slavery that was thus instituted was a 
far more degrading, merciless, and mercenary type than that which 
was blotted out by the Thirteenth Amendment. 

South Carolina, whose moderation and justice are so highly 
praised by Governor Hampton, enacted a code still more cruel than 
that I have quoted from Mississippi. Firearms were forbidden to 
the negro, and any violation of the statute was punished by " a fine 
equal to twice the value of the weapon so unlawfully kept," and, " if 
that be not immediately paid, by corporeal punishment." It was 
further provided that " no person of color shall pursue or practice 
the art, trade, or business of an artisan, mechanic, or shopkeeper, or 
any other trade or employment (besides that of husbandry or that 


of a servant under contract for labor), until he shall have obtained 
a license from the Judge of the District Court, which license shall 
be good for one year only." If the license was granted to the negro 
to be a shopkeeper or peddler, he was compelled to pay one hundred 
dollars per annum for it, and if he pursued the rudest mechanical 
calling he could do so only by the payment of a license fee of ten 
dollars per annum. No such fees were exacted of the whites, and 
no such fee of free blacks during the era of slavery. The negro 
was thus hedged in on all sides ; he was down and he was to be kept 
down, and the chivalric race that denied him a fair and honest com- 
petition in the humblest mechanical pursuits were loud in their asser- 
tions of his inferiority and his incompetency. 

But it was reserved for Louisiana to outdo both South Carolina 
and Mississippi in this horrible legislation. In that State all agri- 
cultural laborers were compelled to make labor contracts during the 
first ten days of January, for the next year. The contract once 
made, the laborer was not to be allowed to leave his place of employ- 
ment during the year except upon conditions not likely to happen 
and easily prevented. The master was allowed to make deductions 
of the servants* wages for " injuries done to animals and agricul- 
tural implements committed to his care," thus making the negroes 
responsible for wear and tear. Deductions were to be made for 
" bad or negligent work," the master being the judge. For every 
act of "disobedience" a fine of one dollar was imposed on the 
offender ; disobedience being a technical term made to include, 
besides " neglect of duty," and " leaving home without permission," 
such fearful offenses as " impudence," or " swearing," or " indecent 
language in the presence of the employer, his family, or agent," or 
"quarreling or fighting with one another." The master or his 
agent might assail every ear with profaneness aimed at the negro 
men, and outrage every sentiment of decency in the foul language 
addressed to the negro women ; but if one of the helpless creatures, 
goaded to resistance and crazed under tyranny, should answer back 
with impudence, or should relieve his mind with an oath, or retort 
indecency upon indecency, he did so at the cost to himself of one 
dollar for every outburst. The " agent " referred to in the statute 
is the well-known overseer of the cotton region, and the care with 
which the law-makers of Louisiana provided that his delicate ears 
and sensitive nerves should not be offended with an oath or an inde- 
cent word from a negro will be appreciated by all who have heard the 
crack of the whip on a Southern plantation. 


It is impossible to quote all the hideous provisions of these stat- 
utes, under whose operation the negro would have relapsed gradual- 
ly and surely into actual and admitted slavery. Kindred legislation 
was attempted in a large majority of the Confederate States, and it 
is not uncharitable or illogical to assume that the ultimate reen- 
slavement of the race was the fixed design of those who framed the 
laws, and of those who attempted to enforce them. 

I am not si)eculating as to what would have been done or might 
have been done in the Southern States if the National Government 
had not intervened. I have quoted what actually was done by 
Legislatures under the control of Southern Democrats, and I am 
only recalling history when I say that those outrages against human 
nature were upheld by the Democratic party of the country. All 
the Democrats whose articles I am reviewing were in various de- 
grees, active or passive, principal or endorser, parties to this legisla- 
tion ; and the fixed determination of the Republican party to thwart 
it and destroy it called down upon its head all the anathemas of 
Democratic wrath. But it was just at that point in our history 
when the Re})ublican party Avas compelled to decide whether the 
emancipated slave should be protected by national power or handed 
over to his late master to be dealt with in the spirit of the enact- 
ments I have quoted. 

To restore the Union on a safe foundation, to reestablish law 
and promote order, to insure justice and equal rights to all, the Re- 
publican party was forced to its Reconstruction policy. To hesi- 
tate in its adoption was to invite and confirm the statutes of wrong 
and cruelty to which I have referred. The first step taken was 
to submit the Fourteenth Amendment, giving citizenship and civil 
rights to the negro, and forbidding that he be counted in the basis 
of representation unless he should be reckoned among the voters. 
The Southern States could have been readily readmitted to all their 
powers and privileges in the Union by accepting the Fourteenth 
Amendment, and negro suffrage would not have been forced upon 
them. The gradual and conservative method of training the ne- 
groes for franchise, as suggested and approved by Governor Hamp- 
ton, had many advocates among Republicans in the North ; and, 
though in my judgment it would have proved delusive and im- 
practicable, it was quite wdthin the power of the South to secure its 
adoption or at least its trial. 

But the States lately in insurrection rejected the Fourteenth 
Amendment with apparent scorn and defiance. In the Legislatures 


of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Florida, it did not receive' a single 
vote ; in South Carolina only one vote ; in Virginia only one ; in 
Texas five votes ; in Arkansas two votes ; in Alabama ten ; in 
North Carolina eleven ; and in Georgia, where Mr. Stephens boasts 
that they gave the negro suffrage in advance of the Fifteenth 
Amendment, only two votes could be found in favor of making the 
negro even a citizen. It would have been more candid in Mr. 
Stephens if he had stated that it was the Legislature assembled 
under the Reconstruction Act that gave suffrage to the negro in 
Georgia, and that the unreconstructed Legislature, which had his 
endorsement and sympathies, and which elected him to the L^nited 
States Senate, not only refused suffrage to the negro, but loaded 
him with grievous disabilities, and passed a criminal code of barbar- 
ous severity for his punishment. 

It is necessary to a clear apprehension of the needful facts in this 
discussion to remember events in the proper order of time. The 
Fourteenth Amendment was submitted to the States June 13, 1866. 
In the autumn of that year, or very early in 1867, the Legislatures 
of all the insurrectionary States except Tennessee had rejected it. 
Thus and then the question was forced upon us, whether the Congress 
of the United States, composed wholly of men who had been loyal 
to the Government, or the Legislatures of the Rebel States, com- 
posed wholly of men who had been disloyal to the Government, 
should determine the basis on which their relations to the Union 
should be resumed. In such a crisis the Republican party could 
not hesitate : to halt, indeed, would have been an abandonment of 
the principles on which the war had been fought ; to surrender to 
the rebel Legislatures would have been cowardly desertion of its 
loyal friends, and a base betrayal of the Union cause. 

And thus, in March, 1867, after and because of the rejection of 
the Fourteenth Amendment by Southern Legislatures, Congress 
passed the Reconstruction Act. This was the origin of negro suf- 
frage. The Southern whites knowingly and willfully brought it upon 
themselves. The Reconstruction Act would never have been de- 
manded had the Southern States accepted the Fourteenth Amendment 
in good faith. But that amendment contained so many provisions 
demanded by considerations of great national policy, that its adop- 
tion became an absolute necessity. Those who controlled the Fed- 
eral Government would have been recreant to their plainest duty, 
had they permitted the power of these States to be wielded by dis- 
loyal hands against the measures deemed essential to the security 



of the Union. To have destroyed the rebellion on the battle-field, 
and then permit it to' seize the power of eleven States and cry 
check on all changes in the organic law necessary to prevent future 
rebellions, would have been a weak and wicked conclusion to the 
grandest contest ever waged for human rights and for constitutional 

Negro suffrage being thus made a necessity by the obduracy of 
those who were in control of the South, it became a subsequent 
necessity to adopt the Fifteenth Amendment. Nothing could have 
been more despicable than to use the negroes to secure the adop- 
tion of the Fourteenth Amendment, and then leave them exposed to 
the hazard of losing suffrage whenever those who had attempted to 
reenslave them should regain political power in their States. Hence 
the Fifteenth Amendment — which never pretended to guarantee 
universal suffrage, but simply forbade that any man should lose his 
vote because he had once been a slave, or because his face might be 
black, or because his remote ancestors came from Africa. 

It is matter of sincere congratulation that, after all the contests 
of the past thirteen years, four eminent leaders of the Democratic 
party should unite in approving negro suffrage. It will not, I 
trust, be considered cynical, certainly not offensive, if I venture to 
suggest that this Democratic harmony on the Republican side of a 
long contest has been developed just at the time when many causes 
have conspired to render negro suffrage in the South powerless 
against the Democratic party. Even in districts where the negro 
vote is four to one, compared with the whites, the Democrats readily 
elect the Representatives to Congress. I do not recall any warm 
approval of negro suffrage by a Democratic leader so long as the 
negro was able to elect one of his own race or a white Republican. 
But when his numbers have been overborne by violence, when his 
white friends have been driven into exile, when murder has been 
just frequent enough to intimidate the voting majority, and when 
negro suffrage as a political power has been destroyed, we find lead- 
ing minds in the Democratic party applauding and upholding it. 
So lately as February 19, 1872, years after negro suffrage was 
adopted and while it was still a power in the Southern States, such 
influential and prominent Democrats as Mr. Bayard, of Delaware, 
and Mr. Beck, of Kentucky, united in an official report to Congress, 
wherein they declared, regarding negro suffrage, that " there can be 
no permanent partition of power nor any peaceable joint exercise of 
power among such discordant bodies of men. One or the other 


must have all or none. . . . Pseudo-philanthropists," continued Mr. 
Bayard and Mr. Beck, " may talk never so loudly about ' equality 
before the law,' where equality is not found in the great natural law 
of race ordained by the Creator." Mr. Beck and Mr. Bayard made 
this report when fresh from protracted intercourse with Southern 
Democratic leaders, and it will not be denied that in their ex- 
pressions they fully represented the opinions of their party at 
that time. Will it be offensive, if I again ask, what has changed 
the views of Democrats except the overthrow of free suffrage ? So 
long as the negro can furnish thirty-five Representatives and thirty- 
five Electors to the South, his suffrage will be upheld in name, and so 
long as the Democratic party is dominant it will be destroyed in fact. 

Mr. Hendricks is a conspicuous convert. The negro is washed 
and made white in his eyes as soon as he votes the Democratic 
ticket. He is greatly affected by the fact that negroes " helped to 
bury a Democratic Congressman whom they had helped to elect." 
In this simple incident Mr. Hendricks finds great evidence of re- 
stored kindliness between the races. Was there ever a time when 
the colored people refused to show respect to the whites, living or 
dead ? The evidence would have been stronger if an instance had 
been quoted of white men paying respect to a deceased negro. 
But, unhappily, if funeral incidents are to be cited, Mr. Hendricks 
will find more than he cares to quote. Almost at the moment of 
his writing, testimony was given before a Senate Committee in 
Louisiana not only of the murder of two negroes for the sin of 
being Republicans, but of their being left without sepulture, and 
actually devoured by hogs on the highway ! Their remains — the 
phrase is doubly significant in this case — were finally covered with 
earth by some negro women, the negro men having all fled from 
their white persecutors. 

Mr. Hendricks's high praise of the governments of South Caro- 
lina and Louisiana, since they fell under Democratic control, is not 
justified by the facts. Where he speaks of Republicans connected 
with the government of South Carolina "meeting their punish- 
ment in prison and seeking their safety in flight," he provokes an 
easy retort. One of these men, an ex-Congressman, was sent to 
prison on disgracefully insufiicient evidence, the Judge delivering a 
bitter partisan harangue when he charged the jury to convict. 
Governor Hampton, to his credit be it said, pardoned him, and it 
would have been still more to his credit had he pardoned him more 
promptly. In another case the Executive of a great Commonwealth 


refused Governor Hampton's requisition, on the ground that the 
man was not wanted for the cause and the crime alleged. These 
criminal charges have in many cases borne the appearance of mere 
political persecutions, in which the victims are not the persons most 

On the other hand, when South Carolinians by the hundred were 
indicted for interfering with the freedom of elections in killing 
negroes by the score, it was found impossible to convict one of 
them. Against the clearest and most overwhelming evidence, these 
murderers were allowed to go free, and the prosecutions were aban- 
doned. South Carolina courts appear to be *' organized to convict " 
when a Republican is on trial, and South Carolina juries impaneled 
to acquit when Democrats are charged with crime. 

In the opinion of Mr. Hendricks, Louisiana under Republican 
control was the very worst of all the Southern governments. A 
change was made in April, 1877, and since then the Democratic 
party has held undisputed power in that State. When the Repub- 
licans surrendered the State there was a surplus of $300,000 in its 
treasury ; taxes were collected, credit maintained, and interest on 
its public securities promptly and faithfully paid. To-day, after 
twenty-one months of Democratic government, according to public 
and undenied report, the State is bankrupt ; its taxes uncollected ; 
its treasury empty ; nearly half a million overdrawn on its fiscal 
agent ; the interest on its public debt unpaid, and its most sacred 
obligations protested and dishonored. Had such decadence hap- 
pened in a State under Republican rule — succeeding a prosperous 
Democratic administration — the denunciations of Mr. Hendricks 
might have been fittingly applied. 

My conclusions on the topic under discussion are : 

First. Slavery having been constitutionally abolished by the 
adoption of the Thirteenth Amendment, the question of suffrage was 
unsettled. But it may be safely affirmed that the Republicans had 
no original design of interfering with the control which the States 
had always exercised on that question. 

Seco7id. The loyal men who had conducted the war to a victorious 
end were not willing that those who had rebelled against the Union 
should come back with political power vastly increased beyond that 
which they had wielded in the days of pro-slavery domination ; and 
hence they proposed the Fourteenth Amendment, practically basing 
representation in Congress upon the voting population — the same 
for North and South. 


Third. Instead of accepting the Fourteenth Amendment, the in- 
surrectionary States scornfully rejected it, and claimed the right to 
settle for themselves the terms on which they would resume rela- 
tions with the Union. And they forthwith proceeded to nullify the 
Thirteenth Amendment by adopting a series of black laws which 
remanded the negro to a worse servitude than that from which he 
had been emancipated. 

Fourth. When the Government, administered by loyal hands, 
found it impossible to secure the necessary guarantees for future 
safety from the " ruling " or rebel class of the South, they demanded 
and enforced a Reconstruction in which loyalty should assert its 
rights. Hence the negro was admitted to suffrage. 

Fifth. The negro having aided by loyal votes in securing the 
great guarantees of the Fourteenth Amendment, the Republicans 
declared that he should not afterward be deprived of suffrage od 
account of race or color. Hence the Fifteenth Amendment. 

Sixth. So long as the negro vote was effective in the South in de- 
feating the Democracy, the leaders of that party denounced and 
opposed it. They withdraw their opposition just at the moment 
when, by fraud, intimidation, violence, and murder, free suffrage on 
the part of the negro in the South is fatally impaired ; by which I 
mean that the negro is not allowed to vote freely where his vote 
can defeat and elect. As a minority voter in Democratic districts 
he is not disturbed. 

Seventh. The answer so often made, that, compared with the 
whole number of Congressional districts in the South, only a small 
number are disturbed, is not apposite, and does not convey the 
truth. For it is only in the districts where the negroes make a 
strong and united effort that violence is needed, and there it is gen- 
erally found. Thus it is said that only in a comparatively few par- 
ishes of Louisiana was there any disturbance at the late election. 
But the Democrats contrived to have a disturbance at the points 
where it was necessary to overcome a large Republican vote, and 
of course had none where there was no resistance. It will generally 
be found that the violence occurs in the districts where the Repub- 
licans have a rightful majority. 

Eighth. As the matter stands, all violence in the South inures to 
the benefit of one political party. And that party is counting upon 
its accession to power and its rule over the country for a series of 
years by reason of the great number of electoral votes which it 
wrongfully gains. Financial credit, commercial enterprises, manu- 


factiiring industries, may all possibly pass under tlie control of the 
Democratic party by reason of its unla^vf ul seizure of political power 
in the South. Our institutions have been tried by the fiery test of 
war, and have survived. It remains to be seen whether the attempt 
to govern the country by the power of a " Solid South," unlawfully 
consolidated, can be successful. 

No thouf^htful man can consider these questions without deep 
concern. The mighty power of a republic of fifty millions of peo- 
ple — with a continent for their possession — can only be wielded per- 
manently by being wielded honestly. In a fair and generous strug- 
gle for partisan power let us not forget those issues and those ends 
which are above party. Organized wrong will ultimately be met 
by organized resistance. The sensitive and dangerous point is in 
the casting and the counting of free ballots. Impartial suffrage 
is our theory. It must become our practice. Any party of Ameri- 
can citizens can bear to be defeated. No party of American citi- 
zens will bear to be defrauded. The men who are interested in 
a dishonest count are units. The men who are interested in an hon- 
est count are millions. I wish to speak for the millions of all politi- 
cal parties, and in their name to declare that the Republic must be 
strong enough, and shall be strong enough, to protect the weakest 
of its citizens in all their rights. To this simple and sublime prin- 
ciple let us, in tlie lofty language of Burke, " attest the retiring 
generations, let us attest the advancing generations, between which, 
as a link in the great chain of eternal order, we stand ! " 

James G. Blaine. 


It is pretty clearly implied in a remark of Dugald Stewart that 
up to his time Jonathan Edwards was the only philosopher of note 
that America had produced. " He," it is added, " in logical acute- 
ness and subtilty, does not yield to any disputant bred in the uni- 
versities of Europe." * This was said more than a half century ago ; 
but all will agree that Edwards even now is incomparably the fore- 
most among those who have cultivated metaphysical studies on this 
side of the Atlantic. He was the pioneer in this department, and the 
same might almost be said of his relation to our literature generally. 
" The foundation of the literature of independent America," writes 
F. D. Maurice, speaking of the treatise on the Will, " was laid in a 
book which was published while it was a subject of the British 
crown." f Edwards is an example of that rare mingling of intellec- 
tual subtilty and spiritual insight, of logical acumen with mystical 
fervor, which make up together the largest mental endowment, and 
qualify their possessor for the highest achievements in the field of 
thought. Augustine is an instance of this remarkable blending of 
the rational with the mystical, this union of light and heat. In his 
" Confessions," in the midst of glowing utterances of adoration, trans- 
porting visions of a glory unseen, he turns off into a speculation upon 
the nature of time, or an argument upon the infinitude of the divine 
attributes. In the typical men of the scholastic age, Anselm and 
Aquinas, there is found the same combination of intellect and feel- 
ing. 1'he understanding follows out its problems, being quickened 
and illuminated, yet not in the least blinded, from a deeper source 
of light. The lack of the one element, that of devout sensibility, 
was the weakness of Abelard ; a degree of deficiency in the other, 

* Stewart's " Works " (Hamilton's ed.), vol L, p. 424. 
t " Modem Philosophy," p. 469. 


that of dialectic enterprise and keenness, lessened the greatness of 
Bernard. A like conjunction of diverse qualities appears in the 
most subtile, the most powerful, the most interesting of living Eng- 
lish theologians, John Henry Newman. Let any competent student 
take up Edwards's treatise on the Will, and mark the sharp, un- 
relenting logic with which he pursues his opponents through all the 
intricate windings of that perplexed controversy, and then turn to 
the same author's sermon on the " Nature and Reality of Spiritual 
Light." It is like passing from the pages of Aristotle to a sermon 
of John Tauler ; only that, unlike most of the mystics, Edwards 
knows how to analyze the experiences of the heart, and to use them 
as data for scientific conclusions. He has left a record of medita- 
tions on " the beauty and sweetness " of divine things, when even 
the whole face of nature was transfigured to his vision. We see 
this keen dialectician, whose power of subtile argument Sir James 
Mackintosh pronounces to have been "perhaps unmatched, certain- 
ly unsurpassed, among men," * melted in an ecstasy of emotion. 
We shall have occasion to point out the effect of this characteristic 
upon his ethical and religious philosophy. 

Edwards was only thirteen when he entered Yale College ; and 
it was while he was a monibor of colloge that he committed to writ- 
ing philosophical remarks that would do credit to the ablest and 
maturest mind. He is one of the most astonishing examples of 
I)recociou8 mental development of which we have any record. 
Pascal is in some respects a parallel instance. He was only twelve 
years old when he framed from his own ingenious observations a 
dissertation upon sound, and when he discovered anew, without aid, 
the truths of geometry as far as the thirty-second proposition of 
the first book of P]uclid. It was chiefly as a mathematical prodigy 
that Pascal was distinguished in his boyhood. Edwards at the age 
of twelve wrote a letter, which is really a well-reasoned scientific 
paper, on the habits of the spider, as ascertained from his own sin- 
gularly accurate observations, f His copious " Notes " on physics 
and natural science, which afford a striking proof of his intellectual 
grasp and versatility, were ^\Titten, at least in great part, before he 
left college. But prior to the composition of these, he set down, 
under the head of " Mind," a series of metaphysical definitions and 
discussions, which, as emanating from a boy of sixteen or seven- 

* " Progress of Ethical Philosophy," p. 108 (Philadelphia, 1832). 
f In Dwight's " Life of Edwards," chap. ii. 


teen, are truly marvelous. In them may be found the germs of 
much that is developed afterward in his theological writings. 

Edwards was a Berkeleian. A large part of these juvenile 
papers are devoted to the elucidation and defense of the doctrine 
that the percepts of sense have no existence independently of mind ; 
that, although they are not originated by us, but by a power with- 
out, that power is not a material substance or substratum, but the 
will of God acting in a uniform method. Sensations are the divine 
ideas, communicated to creaturely minds by the will of Him in 
whom these ideas inhere, and by whom they all consist. " The 
world is an ideal one ; and the law of creating and the succession 
of these ideas is constant and regular." * If we suppose that the 
world is mental in the sense explained, natural philosophy is not in 
the least affected. f The common questions which are brought for- 
ward by way of objection — as, " What becomes of material things 
when we do not see them ? " — he ingeniously answers, and in a tone 
that renders his own belief in their nullity plain. He quotes from 
Cudworth Plato's famous passage about the cave, to illustrate his 
doctrine that material things are shadows and not substances. The 
substance of all bodies is declared to be " the infinitely exact and 
precise divine idea, together with an answerable, perfectly exact, 
precise, and stable will, with respect to corresponding communica- 
tions to created minds, and effects on their minds." J The objec- 
tion that the ideal theory is contradicted by common sense, he con- 
futes by show^ing how erroneous, on any theory, is the vulgar im- 
pression as to the character of our perception of distant objects, and 
by exhibiting the Berkeleian discovery, which Professor Bowen calls 
the one great psychological discovery of later times, § that our im- 
pression of objects of sense from visual perception is totally diverse 
from that given through the sense of touch. Take away color, take 
away the secondary qualities of matter which are confessed to be 
relative — view matter as one who is born blind would regard it — 
and we have only resistance, with the connected ideas of place and 
of space. Matter is thus known to be something quite different 
from what the vulgar imagine it to be. So the way is opened for a 
more just appreciation of the ideal theory, and for the conclusion, 
which Edwards considers to be the truth, that there are only spirit- 
ual beings or substances in the universe. 

* Dwight's " Life," p. 669. f I^id. 

X Ibid., p. 674. § " Modem Philosophy," p. 141. 


It is important to decide whether Edwards adhered to the Berke- 
leian doctrine in after-life. It is found in the " Notes on Natural 
Philosophy," as well as in the manuscript entitled " Mind." These, 
however, were nearly contemporaneous. But in the last-mentioned 
manuscript there are passages inserted of a somewhat later date ; 
and in these the same doctrine is defended.* Moreover, I find in 
the treatise on " Original Sin," one of his latest compositions and a 
posthumous publication, this remark : " The course of nature is 
demonstrated by late improvements in philosophy to be indeed what 
our author himself says it is, viz., nothing but the established order 
of the agency and operation of the Author of nature." f Here it is 
altogether probable that the reference is to the philosophy of Berke- 
ley. With this passage may be compared incidental statements on 
perception, in the treatise on the Will, which, however, do not go 
80 far as necessarily to imply the Berkeleian theory. J 

A less important yet interesting question relates to the particu- 
lar source from which Edwards derived his acquaintance with Berke- 
ley. Professor Fraser, in his very thorough and instructive biogra- 
phy of this philosopher, conjectures that it may have been through 
the influence of Dr. Samuel Johnson, who was a personal friend of 
tlie j)hilosoj)her, and adopted his system. Johnson was a tutor at 
Yale from HIG to 1719, when Edwards was a student. But, from 
1717 to 1719, a portion of the students, of whom Edwards was one, 
were taught at Wethersfield, Johnson remaining in New Haven. 
The seceding students who went to Wethersfield did not regard 
Tutor Johnson with favor. Nor is it certain that he had himself 
espoused the Berkeleian theory at that time. But the " Theory of 
Vision" was given to the world in 1709, and the "Principles of 
Human Knowledge " in 1710 ; so that it is not improbable that 
copies of these works had come into the hands of Edwards, inde- 
jjendently of Johnson. They found in him an eager and congenial 

Locke is the author whose stimulating influence on Edwards is 
most obvious. He read Locke when he was fourteen years old, 
with a delight greater, to use his own words, "than the most greedy 
miser finds when gathering up handfuls of silver and gold from 
some newly-discovered treasure." § Deeply affected as Edwards was 
by this great wi'iter, he read Locke with independence, and not only 

• Sec Dwight's " Life," p. 674. f Dwight's edition, vol, ii., p. 540. 

X Vol. ii., pp. 206, 207. § Dwight's " Life," p. 30. 


pursued a theological direction quite opposite to that of his master, 
but also criticises not unfrequently his doctrines and arguments. 
For example, he exposes the fallacy of the illustration by which 
Locke would support his distinction between preference and choice ; 
and he likewise shows that Locke does not rightly define the differ- 
ence between desire and will.* In this last point, Locke goes coun- 
ter to the description which he gives of the will in the context, 
according to which it can not be at variance with predominant 
desire. Edwards could easily detect the inconsistency of Locke 
in postulating a power to suspend the prosecution of a desire ; since 
this act of suspension must itself be a choice, determined, like every 
other, on Locke's principles, by the strongest motive. It is to 
Locke's chapter on " Power " that Edwards was most indebted for 
quickening suggestions. This discussion, as we are explicitly in- 
formed, caused him to perceive that an evil man may properly be 
said to have a natural or physical ability to be good. Locke an- 
ticipates Edwards in combating the proposition that choice springs 
from a previous state of indifferency, an absolute neutrality of feel- 
ing, either preceding the act of judgment or interposed between 
that act and the act of will. Locke's conception of liberty as 
relating exclusively to the effects of choice, or events consecutive 
to volition, and not to the origination of choice itself, is precisely 
coincident with that of Edwards. " Freedom," says Locke, " consists 
in the dependence of the existence, or not-existence, of any action 
upon our volition of it." Locke asserts that the question whether 
the will itself be free or not is unreasonable and unintelligible ; 
and he precedes Edwards in seeking to fasten upon one who asks 
whether a man is free to choose in a particular w^ay rather than in 
the opposite, the absurdity of assuming the possibility of an infinite 
series of choices, or of inquiring whether an identical proposition is 
true. " To choose as one pleases," if it does not mean " to choose 
as one chooses to choose " — which involves the absurdity of a series 
of choices ad infinitum — can only mean " to choose as one actually 
chooses," a futile identical proposition. In the psychology of the 
act of choice there is no essential difference between Locke and 
Edwards. Both represent the mind as perpetually moved by the 
desire of good. Locke's invariable antecedent of choice, " uneasi- 
ness of desire," or last dictate of the understanding as to good or 
happiness, does not differ from Edwards's " view of the mind as to 

* Vol. ii., pp. 16, 17. 


the greatest apparent good." In one grand peculiarity they coin- 
cide : will and sensibility are confounded. The twofold division 
of the powers of tlie mind still prevailed in j^hilosophy. We are 
endued with understanding and will ; and mental phenomena which 
do not belong to the understanding are relegated to the will. It 
is impossible to ignore wholly the existence of a third department 
of our nature ; and the principal inconsistency of Edwards in his 
discussions of this subject, in his various writings, is the failure 
persistently to identify or persistently to distinguish voluntary and 
involuntary inclinations. Inclination and choice are treated as in- 
distinguishable,* and yet the one is spoken of as the antecedent 
and cause of the other. The ambiguity of " inclination " and of 
its synonyms has been a fruitful source of confusion. It was 
reserved for the metaphysicians of the present century to establish 
the bounds between sensibility, an involuntary function, and will. 
It is important, however, not to overlook the distinction between 
those choices which are permanent states of the will, and constitute 
the abiding principles of character and motives of action, and the 
subsidiary purposes and volitions which they dictate. It is right 
to add that, however Edwards may have owed to Locke pregnant 
hints on the subject of the will, these fell into the richest soil ; and 
the doctrine of philosophical necessity was elaborated and fortified 
by the younger writer with a much more rigid logic and a far wider 
sweep of argument than can be claimed for Locke's discussion. 
Locke modified his opinions from one edition to another ; and his 
correspondence with Limborch discloses the fact that he was him- 
self not satisfied with the views of the subject which he had pre- 
sented in his work. The conviction of Edwards, on the other hand, 
was attended by no misgivings, and staid with him to the end of 

The resemblance of Edwards's treatise on the Will to the trea- 
tises of llobbes and Collins on the same subject is another topic that 
merits attention. As to Hobbes, Edwards has occasion to ob- 
serve that he had never read him. There is no probability that he 
had ever seen a copy of Collins's " Inquiry." Edwards was not the 
man to conceal a real obligation. His intellectual resources were 
too large to make it requisite for him to borrow, and no one has 
ever questioned his thorough honesty. Whatever similarity is 
found to exist between him and the authors referred to is accidental. 

* See, e. g., vol. v., pp. 10, 11. 
VOL. cxxviii. — xo. 268. 19 


Hobbes, like Edwards, holds that " he i^free to do a thing, that he 
may do it if he have the will to do it, and may forbear if he have 
the will to forbear " * — that is, freedom is concerned not with the 
genesis, but with the event, of the choice. " The last dictate of 
the judgment concerning the good or bad that may follow on any 
action," in agreement w^ith Edwards, " is made the proximate effi- 
cient cause of the will's determination on one side or the other." f 
The objection that counsels, admonitions, commands, and the like, 
are vain and useless on the necessitarian doctrine, is met by Hobbes 
with the retort that, on no other doctrine, can they have any effect 
at all. This is precisely in the manner of Edwards. The argu- 
ment for necessity from the principle of causation, applied to the 
determinations of the will, is substantially the same in both writers. 
Collins brings forward the same definition of liberty as " a power 
in man to do as he wills, or pleases." J He applies, also, the reduc- 
tio ad ahsurdum to the statement that a man can choose as he 
pleases : it is an identical proposition. § He seeks to prove the ne- 
cessity of volitions by bringing them under the law of cause and 
effect, and by driving his antagonists into the admission that the 
mind is determined by causal agency to choose so and not other- 
wise, the alternative being atheism. |1 This corresponds closely to 
the reasoning of Edwards. Their arguments from the divine fore- 
knowledge are in substance the same. T Things must be certain in 
order to be foreseen, and they are not certain unless antecedent 
causes render them certain. Persuasions, appeals, and laws, are ad- 
dressed to men only on the supposition that they tend to produce 
effects, or contain within them causal energy. These coincidences 
between Edwards and the authors above named are really not re- 
markable. The defenders of the doctrine of necessity naturally 
take one path. They demand an explanation of the determination 
of the will, so far as it involves the election of one thing in prefer- 
ence to another. They deny that the mere power of willing ac- 
counts for the specification of the choice, by which one thing is 
taken and another rejected. Taking this weapon, the axiom of 
cause and effect, they chase their opponents out of every place of 
refuge. Edwards is peculiar only in the surpassing keenness and 
unsparing persistency with which he carries on the combat, even 

* " Works " (Molesworth's edition), vol. ii., p. 410. f P. 247. 

X " Inquiry" (London, lYlY), p. 2. § P. 41. 

\ Pp. 68, 69. 1 P. 83 seq. 


anticipating defenses against his logic which had not been as yet 
set up. lie was anxious to demolish forts even before they were 
erected. His habit of taking up all conceivable objections to the 
proposition which he advocates, in advance of the opponent, is one 
main source of his strength as a disputant. He not only fires his 
own gun, but spikes that of the enemy. 

It is far from being true that Edwards was the first to assert 
the impropriety of the term " necessary " as a predicate of acts of 
will, on the ground that necessity presupposes an opposition of the 
will, which, of course, is precluded when the occurrence in question 
is itself a choice. I am constrained to that to which my will is 
opposed, but which nevertheless occurs. That is necessary " which 
choice can not prevent." * The same objection is made to the 
terms " irresistible," ** unavoidable," " inevitable," " unable," and 
their synonyms, as descriptive of the determinations of the will. 
I do not find in Augustine this criticism of the above-mentioned 
terms in any explicit form ; yet there lurks continually under his 
statements the feeling that underlies this criticism ; as, for instance, 
when he speaks of "the most blessed necessity" of not sinning, 
under which the Deity is placed, '^ if necessity it is to be called " — 
" si necessitas dicenda est." f But the objection to all terms imply- 
ing coercion, especially to the word "necessity," is set forth by 
Thomas Aquinas as clearly as by Edwards. " That which is moved 
by another," writes Thomas, "is said to be constrained (cogi), if it 
is moved against its own inclination (contra inclinationem propriam); 
but if it be moved by another which gives to it its own inclination 
((plod sibi dat propriam inclinationem), it is not said to be con- 
strained .... So God in moving the will does not constrain it, be- 
cause he gives to it its own inclination. To be moved voluntarily 
is to be moved of one's self, that is, from an internal principle ; but 
that intrinsic principle can be moved by another principle extrinsic; 
and no to be i/ioved of one's self is not inconsistent with being moved 
by another.'''' \ 

It is the doctrine of Edwards, then, that the will is determined 
by " that view of the mind which has the greatest degree of pre- 
vious tendency to excite volition." § This antecedent mental state 
secures the result by a strictly causal efficiency. Moral necessity is 
distinguished from the natural necessity that prevails in material 

* Edwards's "Works," vol. ii., p. 84. f Op. imp., i., 103. 

X "Summa," Part I., Question 5, Article 4. § "Works," vol. ii., p. 25. 


nature, in that the former is concerned with mental phenomena, 
with motives and the volitions which they produce ; but the dif- 
ference " does not lie so much in the nature of the connection, as in 
the two terms connected,'''' * It is cause and effect in both cases. 
To the objection that morality and responsibility are subverted by 
this doctrine, Edwards replies that men are responsible for their 
choices, no matter what the causes of them may be ; that moral 
quality inheres in the choices themselves, and not in their causes. 
As liberty " does not consider anything of the cause of the choice," f 
so it is with moral accountableness, with merit and ill-desert. Suf- 
ficient that the choice exists in the man as an operation of will. \ 
On no other hypothesis than the necessitarian did Edwards think it 
possible to hold to the omniscience of God and his universal provi- 
dence and government. Principles which freethinkers maintained 
for other ends, he defended as the indispensable foundations of 

Edwards came forward as the champion of Calvinism against 
Whitby and its other English assailants. He scattered to the winds 
the loosely defined notions of free-will which made it include the 
choosing of choices, and choice from a previous indifference, or apart 
from all influence of motives. It is not true that, out of various pos- 
sible choices, the mind decides upon, i. e., chooses one. Nor is it 
true that the act of choice starts into being independently of induce- 
ments. Although his adversaries must have felt that he took ad- 
vantage of the infirmities of language, and confuted what they 
said rather than what they meant, yet it is quite untrue that he 
was guilty of any conscious unfairness. He was not the man pur- 
posely to surround himself with 

. . . . " mist, the common gloss 
Of tbeologians." 

He had no faith in their conception of freedom, however it 
might be formulated. But, in prosecuting his purpose, Edwards 
set up a philosophy of the will which is not consonant with the 
doctrine that had been held by the main body of Augustinian 
theologians. It is true that the Wittenberg Reformers, at the out- 
set, and Calvin, in his earlier writings, especially the " Institutes," 
pushed predestination to the supralapsarian extreme. The doctrine 
of Augustine, however, and the more general doctrine even of Cal- 

* Ibid., p. 34. f P. 39, cf., p. 191. % P. 186 seq. (Part IV., § 1). 


vinistic theologians, the doctrine of Calvin himself, and of the 
Westminster Assembly's creeds, is that a certain liberty of will ad 
ntruinvisj or the power of contrary choice, had belonged to the first 
man, but had disappeared in the act of transgression, which brought 
his will into bondage to evil. It was the common doctrine, too, 
that in mankind now, while the will is enslaved as regards religious 
obedience, it remains free outside of this province, in all civil and 
secular concerns. In this wide domain the power of contrary choice 
still subsists. But Edwards's conception of the will admits of no 
such distinction. Freedom is as prcdicable of men now as of Adam 
before he sinned ; of religious morality as of the affairs of worldly 
business ; of man as of God. lie asserts most emphatically that he 
holds men to be possessed now of all the liberty which it is possible 
to imagine, or which it ever entered into the heart of any man to 
conceive. * Of course, there can have been no loss of liberty, no 
forfeiture of a prerogative once possessed. Philosophical necessity 
belongs to the very nature of the will. Therefore, it binds all spirit- 
ual beings alike. This is not the philosophy of Augustine or of the 
Westminster divines. They held to a mutability of will once be- 
longing to man, but now lost ; to a freedom pertaining at present to 
men in one sphere of action, but not in another. 

Refraining, for the present, from comments on the drift of this 
philosophical creed, we follow this acute and powerful thinker into 
another but adjacent field. Not satisfied with the timid, half- 
hearted way in which Watts, Doddridge, and other English Calvin- 
ists of that day, had attenuated the doctrine of original sin, in 
deference to the attacks of the Arminians, Edwards undertook to 
reclaim the ground which had been surrendered, and to put to rout 
the confident assailants. For their " glorying and insults " he be- 
lieved there was no foundation, f He took up a great theme, belong- 
ing alike to philosophy and theology, the dominion of moral evil 
in the race of mankind. It can not be said that he does not square- 
ly grapple with his adversaries. He fully understood himself, and 
had the courage which comes from undoubting conviction. He 
invited for his arguments the closest scrutiny, and only deprecated 
the objection that they were " metaphysical," as vague and imperti- 
nent. " The question is not," he on one occasion remarks, " whether 
what is said be metaphysics, physics, logic, or mathematics, Latin, 
English, French, or Mohawk, but whether the reasoning be good 

♦ Vol. ii., p. 293. t D wight's " Life," p. 569. 


and the arguments truly conclusive." * His ardor is a white heat 
which never moves him to substitute declamation for reasoning. In 
this treatise on " Original Sin," he blinks no difficulties ; but, having 
established by cogent reasoning and by Scripture, with appeals 
to heathen as well as Christian authority, the tremendous fact of sin, 
as a universal characteristic of mankind, he endeavors to prove that 
men are truly, and not by any legal fiction, judged to be sinful 
from the start, and literally guilty of the primal transgression. To 
this end, he seeks to bring the continuance of sin in the individuals 
of the race, onward from the beginning of their personal life, under 
the familiar law of habit. It is analogous to the self-perpetuation 
of any habit v/hich arises from an initial act. To prove that 
Adam's act was our act, he launches out into a bold speculation on 
the nature of identity. Personal identity, he asserts, is the effect 
of the divine will and orlinance. If it consists in the sameness of 
consciousness, that is kept up by divine acts from moment to mo- 
ment. If it be thought to consist in the sameness of substance, 
even this is due to the perpetual divine preservation ; and preserva- 
tion is not to be distinguislied from constantly repeated acts of 
creation. Our identity is a constituted identity, dependent upon 
the creative will, and in this sense arbitrary, yet conformed to an 
idea of order. So the individuals of the human race are the con- 
tinuation of Adam ; they truly — that is, by the will and appoint- 
ment of God — constitute one moral whole. It is strictly true that 
all participated in the act by which "the species first rebelled 
against God." f We are not condemned for another's evil choice, 
but for our own, and the principle of sin within us is only the nat- 
ural consequence of that original act. Time counts for jiothing : 
the first rising of evil inclination in us is one and the same with 
the first rising of evil inclination in Adam ; it is the members par- 
ticipating in, and consenting to, the act of the head. The habit of 
sinning follows upon this first rising of evil inclination, in us as in 
Adam. Such is the constitution of things ; and on the divine con- 
stitution, the persistence of individuality, of personal consciousness 
and identity, equally depends. It is to be noticed that, in defense 
of his realistic theory, Edwards does not lay hold of the traducian 
hypothesis of the evolution of souls. He admits that souls are 
created ; but so are consciousness and the substance of our individual 
being at every successive instant of time. Like Anselm, and the 

* Vol. ii., p. 474. t 'V'ol. ii., p. 643. 


schoolmen generally, he is a creationist. It is evident that Locke's 
curious chapter on " Identity and Diversity " * put Edwards on the 
track on which he advanced to these novel opinions. Locke there 
attempts to prove that sameness of consciousness is the sole bond of 
identity, and that identity would remain were consciousness dis- 
joined from one substance and connected with another. Edwards's 
opinion is peculiar to himself, but there is no reason to doubt that 
the initial impulse to the reflections that issued in it was imparted 
by the discussion of Locke. 

We turn now to the ethical theory of Edwards. In his mas- 
terly treatise on the " Nature of True Virtue," he does not content 
himself, as philosophers before him had so often done, with the 
inquiry, What is the abstract quality of virtue, or the foundation of 
moral obli<^ation ? but he sets forth the nature of virtue in the con- 
crete, or the princij)le of goodness. This he finds to be benevo- 
lence, or love to intelligent being. It is love to the entire society 
of intelligent beings according to their rank, or, to use his phrase, 
"the amount of being" which belongs to them. It is thus a pro- 
portionate love ; supreme and absolute as regards God, limited as 
reganls inferior beings. Lender this conception, ethics and religion 
are inseparably connected. True love to man is love to him as be- 
ing, or as having being in himself, and is indissolubly connected, if 
it be real and genuine, with a proportionately greater love to God. 
This benevolence, which embraces in itself all goodness, is the 
fountain and essence of specific virtues. It is described as a pro- 
pensity to being, a union of heart to intelligent being, a consent to 
being, which prompts one to seek the welfare of the objects loved. 
It is not synonymous with delight in the happiness of others, but 
is the spring of that delight. Now, he who actually exercises this 
love delights in the same love when it is seen in others ; and this 
delight induces and involves an additional love to them, the love of 
complacency. There is a spiritual beauty in benevolence which is 
perceived only through experience. The relish which this beauty 
excites and gratifies is possible only to him who is himself benevo- 
lent. There is a rectitude in benevolence, a fitness to the nature 
of the soul and the nature of things ; and the perception of this 
rectitude awakens the sense of obligation, and binds all men to be 
benevolent. The natural conscience makes a man uneasy " in the 
consciousness of doing that to others which he should be angry 

* Book ii., c. 27. 


with tliem for doing to him, if they were in his case, and he in 
theirs." This feeling may be resolved into a consciousness of being 
inconsistent with himself, of a disagreement with his own nature. 
With the feeling of approbation and disapprobation, there is joined 
a sense of desert, which consists in a natural agreement, proportion, 
and harmony between malevolence or injury and resentment and 
punishment. An essential element in Edwards's whole theory is 
this double excellence of universal love : first, a rightness recognized 
by all men, whether they be good or bad; and a peculiar, transcen- 
dent beauty revealed only to the good, or on the condition of the 
exercise of love as a practical principle. Of the natural conscience 
in its relation to love he says : " Although it sees not, or rather 
does not taste its primary and essential beauty, i. e., it tastes no 
sweetness in benevolence to being in general, simply considered, 
for nothing but general benevolence itself can do that ; yet this 
natural conscience, common to mankind, may approve it from that 
uniformity, equality, and justice, which there is in it ; and the 
demerit which is seen in the contrary, consisting in the natural 
agreement between the contrarj^, and being hated of being-in-gen- 
eral."* The moral sense which is common to all men, and the 
spiritual sense which belongs to the benevolent, may be called sen- 
timents ; but not with the idea that they are merely subjective or 
arbitrary, and not correspondent to the objective reality. The quality 
of rightness and the quality of spiritual beauty inhere in love as in- 
trinsic attributes. By means of this distinction between the intrinsic 
rectitude and the spiritual beauty of the virtuous principle, Edwards 
built up a foundation for his doctrine of spiritual light, or for that 
mystical side which has been pointed out in his character and in 
his conception of religion. The reaction of benevolence against its 
opposite as being unrighteous and offensive to the sense of spiritual 
beauty, and as an injury to the beings on whom benevolence fixes 
its regard, is a form of hatred. This hatred on the part of God 
and of all benevolent beings toward " the statedly and irreclaimably 
evil " inspires a feeling of satisfaction in their punishment. Those 
descriptions in Edwards of the sufferings of incorrigible evil-doers 
in the future world, and of the contentment of the righteous at be- 
holding them, which grate on the sensibility of most of the present 
generation, he felt no difficulty in reconciling with the doctrine 
that impartial and universal love is the essence of virtue. 

* Vol. iii., p. 132. 


The disinterested love which is identical with virtue is the an- 
tipode of self-love. If self-love signifies nothing but a man's loving 
what is pleasing to him, this is only to say that he loves what he 
loves ; since, with Edwards, loving an object is synonymous with 
being pleased with it. It is " the same thing as a man's having a 
faculty of will." * But the proper meaning of self-love is regard 
to self in distinction from others, or regard to some private interest. 
Edwards undertakes to resolve all particular affections which do not 
involve a regard t<^ universal being, and a willingness that the sub- 
ordinate interest should give way whenever it competes with the 
rights and the interests of the whole, into self-love. This is true 
of habits of feeling and actions that are done at the dictate of nat- 
ural conscience, which may be looked upon " as in some sort arising 
from self-love, or self-union," or the uneasy consciousness of being 
inconsistent with one's self. The most questionable feature in Ed- 
wards's whole theory is the position to which the natural perception 
of right and sense of moral obligation are reduced, in order to ex- 
alt the sense of spiritual beauty as the one necessary attendant of 
true virtue. But he is not justly chargeable with displacing the 
particular affections — love of family, patriotism, and the like — al- 
though Robert Hall thinks that Godwin built up his ethical notions 
on the reasoning of Edwards, as Godwin avowedly leaned upon 
Edwards in his exposition of liberty and necessity.f 

In the dissertation on " God's Chief End in Creation," which, 
like the essay on the " Nature of True Virtue," was posthumous, Ed- 
wards " overleaped these earthy bounds," and sought to unveil the 
motive of the Deity in calling the universe into being. He rejects 
every notion of an indigence, insufficiency, and mutability in God, 
or any dependence of the Creator on the creature for any part of 
his perfection or happiness. Every pantheistic hypothesis of this 
nature he repels. God must be conceived of as estimating the sum 
total of his own excellence at its real worth. This regard for his 
glory, or his glorious perfections, not because they are his, but for 
their o^^^l sake, is not an unworthy feeling or motive to action. 
The disposition to communicate the infinite fullness of good which 
inheres eternally in himself, ad extra, is an original property of his 
nature. This incited him to create the world. That his attributes, 
should be exerted and should be known and esteemed, and become 

* Vol. iii., p. 118. 

t Compare Hall's " Works " (Bohn's edition), p. 284 ; Godwin's " Political Justice," 
vol. i., p. 279 (Dublin, 1793). 


a source of joy to other beings, is fit and proper. His delight in 
his creatures does not militate against his independence, since the 
creation emanates from himself, and this delight may be resolved 
into a delight in himself. In God, the love of himself and the love 
of the public are not to be distinguished as in man, " because God's 
being, as it were, comprehends all." Nor is it selfish in him to seek 
for the holiness and happiness of the creature, out of supreme re- 
gard to himself, or from the esteem which he has for that excellence, 
a portion of which he imparts to them, and which he reasonably 
desires to see an object of honor, and the source of a joy like his 
own. " For it is the necessary consequence of true esteem and love, 
that we value others' esteem of the same object, and dislike the 
contrary. For the same reason, God approves of others' esteem 
and love of himself." The creature is intended for an eternally in- 
creasing nearness and union to God. Under this idea, his " interest 
must be viewed as one with God's interest," and is therefore not 
regarded by God as a thing distinct and separate from himself. 
Thus, all the activities of God return to himself as the final goal. 

Edwards was acquainted with Hutcheson. " The calm, stable, 
universal good-will to all, or the most extensive benevolence," and 
"the relish and reputation of it," or "the esteem and good-will of a 
higher kind to all in whom it is found," are phrases of this writer * 
which remind us of the American philosopher. But the scientific 
construction of the theory of virtue, especially in the place which 
love to God finds in it, is original with Edwards. It is gratifying 
to notice the admiration which the younger Fichte expresses for 
this Essay, which is only known to him through the brief sketch of 
Mackintosh. "What he reports of it," says Fichte," appears to 
me excellent." f He speaks of the bold and profound thought that 
God, as the source of love in all creatures, on the same ground loves 
himself infinitely more than any finite being ; and therefore in the 
creation of the world can have no other end than the revelation of 
his own perfection, which, it is to be observed, consists in love. % 
" So," concludes Fichte, " has this solitary thinker of North Amer- 
ica risen to the deepest and loftiest ground which can underlie the 
principle of morals : universal benevolence which in us, as it were, 
is potentially latent, and in morality is to emerge into full conscious- 

* " Moral Philosophy," vol. i., p. 69. 

f " Was dieser von ihm berichtet finden wir vortrefflich." " System der Ethik," 
i., 544. 

X Pp. 544, 545. 

TEE pniLosopnr of Jonathan ed wards. 299 

ness and activity, is only the effect of the bond of love, which in- 
closes us all in God." The degree or amount of being is a some- 
what obscure idea ; nevertheless the German critic considers it a 
true and profound thought that the degree of the perfection of a 
being is to determine the degree of love to him. Mackintosh, to 
whom Fichte owed his knowledge of Edwards, apparently fails, in 
one passage, to apprehend Edwards's distinction between love and 
esteem, or benevolence and moral complacency. 

In the interesting letter which Edwards wrote to the trustees of 
Princeton College, he gives reasons for his reluctance to assume the 
office of president of that institution, which he afterward accepted. 
He explains that he had always been accustomed to study with pen 
in hand, recording his best thoughts on innumerable subjects for 
his own benefit. Among the results of this practice there had 
grovrn up in his hands an unfinished work, " a body of divinity in 
an entire new method, being thrown into the form of a history." 
This was nothing less than a philosophy of the history of mankind, 
contemplated with reference to the redemption of the world by 
Christ, the center toward which the whole current of anterior events 
converged, and from which all subsequent events radiate. There 
were to be interwoven in the work " all parts of divinity," in such 
a method as to exhibit to the best advantage their " admirable con- 
texture and harmony." The conception was a grand one, resem- 
bling that of Augustine in the " De civitate Dei." The treatise, in 
its unfinished state, was published after the author's death, under the 
title, *' A History of the Work of Redemption, containing the Out- 
lines of a Body of Divinity, including a View of Church History in 
a Method entirely new." In its incomplete form, and notwithstand- 
ing the greater disadvantage of the author's limited leisure and 
opportunity for the prosecution of historical investigation, it re- 
mains an impressive monument of the variety of his powers and of 
the broad range of his studies and reflections. He proposed to un- 
fold the course of Divine Providence in all its successive stages, 
from the decree of creation to the end of the world. The prepara- 
tion of redemption, the accomplishment of it through the life and 
death of Christ, and its effects, are the three divisions into which the 
book is cast. He compares the work of redemption, which he under- 
takes to delineate in its orderly progress, to " a temple that is build- 
ing : first the workmen are sent forth, then the materials are gath- 
ered, the ground is fitted, and the foundation laid ; then the super- 
structure is erected, one part after another, till at length the top 


stone is laid and all is finished." * Of course the acts of the drama, 
which are still in the future, have to be learned from prophecy. 

We have seen that Edwards believed in predestination in the 
extreme or supralapsarian form. He incloses in the iron network 
of philosophical necessity all intelligent beings. Verbal objections 
to the term " necessity," and the ascription of " a natural ability " 
to voluntary agents, do not subtract an iota from the real signifi- 
cance of the dogma. The sovereignty of God in the realm of 
choices, as in the realm of matter, and his omnipresent agency, 
are fundamental in his creed. To the charge that their principles 
are destructive of morality, the theological advocates of predestina- 
tion have triumphantly appealed to facts. Where have the obli- 
gations of morality been felt more than among the Calvinists of 
Geneva and of Holland, the Huguenots of France, the Scottish Cov- 
enanters, and the Puritans of England and of New England ? If 
the doctrine of necessity has borne bad fruits in the lives of free- 
thinkers who have espoused it, such is not the case as regards the 
professors of the Calvinistic creed. It must be observed, however, 
that it is not from their favorite dogma that extreme Calvinists 
have drawn their ethics. Their moral sense has been invigorated 
from other sources. The Stoics believed in fate, but were person- 
ally upright and conscientious. They borrowed their ethics from 
earlier philosophers, and their morals stood in no genetic relation to 
their metaphysics. With Calvinists, predestination stands as the 
correlate of the sense of absolute dependence, of faith in the con- 
trol of Divine Providence, and of gratitude for grace as the source 
of all that is good within them. Predestination is an inference 
rather than a premise. Macaulay says of William III. : " The 
tenet of predestination was the keystone of his religion. He even 
declared that, if he were to abandon that tenet, he must abandon 
with it all belief in a superintending Providence, and must become 
a mere Epicurean." f Calvinists have not piled up tome upon tome 
of theological controversy, they have not pined in dungeons and 
faced death on the battle-field, for the sake of a merely speculative 
notion. It is the moral truth for which it stands in their minds as 
the logical equivalent that has made them so strenuous in the main- 
tenance of it. 

Julius Miiller, one of the ablest of recent theologians, has well 

* Vol. iii., p. 171. 

f " History of England," vol. ii., p. 149 (New York, 1849). 

TUB rniLosornY of Jonathan bdwaeds. 301 

remarked that' while the supralapsarian conception, by which the 
will is held to be determined to good or to evil, in the first man as 
in all others, by exterior causes, might have been held, and was 
held, at a former day, in conjunction with a sincere theism ; such a 
union of opposites at present would not be possible. Pantheism 
would now be connected with such a philosophical tenet. The 
power of God, acting in man through the machinery of motives, 
would be held to be the sole efficient. Nay, all things would be 
traced to impersonal agency. Personality would be considered 
merely phenomenal. The idea of creative action would be sup- 
planted by that of emanation. 

The doctrine of Edwards, apart from all theological prejudice, 
fails to satisfy the generality of mankind, when it is set up as a 
complete and exclusive solution of the problem of liberty and neces- 
sity, lie labors hard to prove that common sense is with him, but 
he labors in vain. It is one thing, however, to utter a moral pro- 
test, and another to furnish a logical answer or a valid rectification. 

Certain eminent theologians of Kew England in later times have 
asserted the j)ower of contrary choice as existing ever in connection 
with a previous certainty of the determination of the will being 
what it actually is. They have maintained that motives, the inter- 
nal antecedents of choice, constitute a special order of causes, which 
are distinguished from all others by giving the certainty, but not 
the necessity, of the action which follows them. On this theory 
they claim that a foundation is laid for the practical truth relative 
to God\s providence and human dependence, at the same time that 
freedom and responsibility are left untouched. Dr. Samuel Clarke, 
in bis " Remarks " on Collins's book, presents the leading points of 
this theory. Clarke asserts that there exists a principle of self- 
motion in man, a power of initiating motion, or of voluntary self- 
determination. This power is not determined as to the mode of its 
exertion by anything but itself ; that would involve a contradic- 
tion. It is self-moving. It is absurd to attribute efficiency to the 
mental states which are called motives. If they had efficiency, man 
would be like a clock, or a pair of scales, endowed with sensation or 
perception. He would not be an agent. What we call motives are 
bare antecedents, or occasional causes.* Clarke shows that the oppo- 
site supposition involves an infinite regress of effects with no cause at 
all. Moreover, uniformity of action does not imply a necessity in 

* "Remarks," etc., p. 9 (London, 1111). 


the connection of the act with its antecedents. " The experience of 
a man's ever doing what he judges reasonable to do, is not at all an 
experience of his being under any necessity so to do. For concom- 
itancy in this case is no evidence at all of physical connection." * 
The argument for necessity from God's prescience, Clarke seeks to 
confute by maintaining the previous certainty of acts, even on the 
supposition that they are free, and by claiming for God " an infalli- 
ble judgment concerning contingent truths," which is only a power 
that we ourselves possess, carried to perfection. This power of 
judging, however, Clarke subjects to no searching analysis ; and his 
reasoning is hardly sufficient to meet the objections to the possibility 
of foreknowing contingent actions, which are advanced by Edwards. f 
The later New England philosophy postulates, however, a certainty 
which is produced by the antecedent causes, taken in the aggregate. 
Can we conceive of a causal influence which makes an event infalli- 
bly certain, and yet not necessary ? On this question the validity 
of the later New England theorem seems to hinge. 

The Scottish philosophy of Sir "William Hamilton solves the prob- 
lem by affirming the inconceivability of both freedom and neces- 
sity, on the ground that the first implies a beginning of motion, and 
the other an infinite regress of effects ; and it accepts the truth of 
free-will on the basis of our moral feelings, the feelings of self-ap- 
probation and remorse, praise and blame, which presuppose moral 

A middle position is that taken by able philosophers and theo- 
logians, of whom the late Dr. Mozley is a leading representative. 
We have an apprehension of two truths which appear irreconcilable 
with one another ; but on this ground solely, that our idea or ap- 
prehension, in either case, is obscure, imperfect, an incipient and 
not a completed conception. These truths are therefore mysterious. 
They are not a zero in our apprehension, nor are they fully com- 
prehended. Hence our deductions from them are subject to a cor- 
responding imperfection. They may serve us, up to a certain point, 
as the groundwork of moral truth ; but neither can be used to sub- 
vert that moral truth which is related to the other. When moral 
truth is contradicted by logic, there is a flaw in the logic ; and this 
is traceable to the imperfect character of the notions which enter 
into the premises. Mozley would probably sanction the dictum of 
Coleridge that, when logic seems to clash with moral intuitions, 

* " Remarks," etc., p. 25 (London, \111). 
t Treatise on the Will, Part II., § 12. 


the superior authority belongs to conscience. It need hardly be 
said that the problem belongs not exclusively to theology — it be- 
longs to philosophy as well. The perplexities that pertain to it are 
not escaped by those who renounce the Christian faith. 

It is a growing conviction of students of Scripture and of philos- 
ophy that, on the subject before us, there is more than one hemi- 
sphere of truth. That which both the Calvinist and Arminian chiefly 
prized was truth, not error. What each contended against was the 
supposed implications of a proposition which was valued by his 
opponent from its relation to a set of implications of a different 
sort. Each connected with his antagonist's thesis inferences which 
that antagonist repudiated. One hemisphere of truth Jonathan Ed- 
wards saw with clearness, and upheld with a strength of argument 
and a subdued but intense fervency which have never been sur- 

Edwards died at the age of fifty-four, three months after he had 
entereil upon the duties of president at Princeton. He was an inde- 
fatigable student, working often for thirteen hours in the day. A 
biographer says of him that perhaps there never was a man more 
constantly retired from the world. He was never physically strong. 
Not at all morose, but courteous and gentle in his ways, he was yet 
taciturn, and he himself refers to what he calls " the disagreeable dull- 
ness and stiffness of his demeanor, unfitting him for conversation 
and contact with the world." * His countenance is not such as we 
should expect a polemical theologian to wear, but is more like that 
of St. John, according thus with the deep mystical vein of which 
we have spoken. He is the doctor angellcus among our theologians, 
and, had he lived in the thirteenth century instead of the eighteenth, 
he would have been decorated by admiring pupils with such a title. 
If it be true that, in the last century, Berkeley, Hume, and Kant, 
are the three great names in philosophy, there might have been 
added to the brief catalogue, had he chosen to devote himself ex- 
clusively to metaphysics, the name of Jonathan Edwards. On the 
memorial window in honor of him, in the chapel of Yale College, of 
which he is the most illustrious graduate, stands the just inscription : 
" lonathan Edwards : summi in ecclesia ordinis vates : fuit rerum 
sacrarum philosophus qui saeculorum admirationem movet : Dei 
cultor mystice amantissimus : hie studebat, docebat." 

George P. Fisheb. 

*Dwight*8"Life,"p. 668. 


Strange as it may appear, it is nevertlieless a fact that, after 
nearly four hundred years of conflict between the European and 
American races for supremacy on this continent, a conflict in which 
war and peace have alternated almost as frequently as the seasons, 
we still have presented the question, What shall be done with the 
Indians? If the graves of the thousands of victims who have 
fallen in the terrible wars of race had been placed in line, the phi- 
lanthropist might travel from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and from 
the Lakes to the Gulf, and be constantly within sight of green 
mounds. And yet we marvel at the problem as if some new ques- 
tion of politics or morals had been presented. Indeed, wise men 
differ in opinion, journalists speculate, divines preach, and states- 
men pronounce it still a vexed question. 

The most amusing part of the quandary, however, is that it 
should be regarded as something new and original. After every 
generation has contended on deadly fields with the hope of settling 
the question, the home governments enacted laws, the colonies 
framed rules, every Administration of our Government forced to 
meet the difficulty, and every Congress discussed the " Indian Ques- 
tion," we are still brought face to face with the perplexing problem. 

The real issue in the question which is now before the American 
people is, whether we shall continue the vacillating and expensive 
policy that has marred our fair name as a nation and a Christian 
people, or devise some practical and judicious system by which we 
can govern one quarter of a million of our population, securing and 
maintaining their loyalty, raising them from the darkness of bar- 
barism to the light of civilization, and put an end to these inter- 
minable and expensive Indian wars. 

The supposition that we are near the end of our Indian troubles 
is erroneous, and the fact that a condition of affairs now exists over 
an enormous area of our country, in which an American citizen 


can not travel, unguarded and unarmed, without the danger of 
being molested, is, to say the least, preposterous and unsatisfactory. 

If, by a dispassionate and impartial discussion of the subject, 
some measure may be devised that will eradicate the evil, and lead to 
the adoption of a permanent improvement in the management of our 
Indian matters, one object of this paper will have been accomplished. 

In considering the subject, it might be well to first examine the 
causes which have pro<lu(od the present condition of affairs, and, in 
doing so, if the writer shall allude to some of the sins of his otsti 
race, it will only be in order that an unbiased judgment may be 
formed of both sides of the question. 

It will be remembered that one class or race is without repre- 
sentation, and has not the advantages of the press or the telegraph 
to bring it into communication with the intelligence of the world, 
and is seldom heard except in the cry of alarm and conflict along 
the Western frontier. If we dismiss from our minds the prejudice 
we have against the Indian, we shall be enabled to more clearly 
understand the impulses that govern both races. Sitting Bull, the 
great war chief of the Dakota nation, uttered one truth when he 
said that *' there was not one white man who loved an Indian, and 
not a true Indian but who hated a white man." 

Could we but perceive the true character of the Indians, and 
learn their dispositions, not covered by the cloak of necessity, 
policy, and interest, we should find that they regard us as a body 
of false and cruel invaders of their country, while we are too apt 
to consider them as a treacherous and bloodthirsty race, that should 
be destroyed by any and all means, yet, if we consider the cause of 
this feeling, we might more readily understand the result. 

The more we study the Indian's character, the more we appre- 
ciate the marked distinction between the civilized being and the 
real savage, yet we shall find that the latter is governed by the 
same impulses and motives that govern all other men. The want 
of confidence and the bitter hatred now existing between the two 
races have been engendered by the warfare that has lasted for cen- 
turies, and by the stories of bad faith, cruelty, and wrong, handed 
down by tradition from father to son until they have become second 
nature in both. It is unfair to suppose that one party has invari- 
ably acted rightly, and that the other is responsible for every wrong 
that has been committed. We might recount the treachery of the 
red-man, the atrocity of his crimes, the cruelties of his tortures, 
and the hideousness of many of his savage customs ; we might un- 
VOL. cxxviii. — NO. 268. 30 


dertake to estimate the number of his victims, and to picture the 
numberless valleys which he has illumined by the burning homes 
of hardy frontiersmen, yet at the same time the other side of the 
picture might appear equally as black with injustice. 

One hundred years before the pilgrims landed at Plymouth, the 
Spanish Government issued a decree authorizing the enslavement 
of American Indians, as in accord with the law of God and man. 
Later they were transported to France, to San Domingo and other 
Spanish colonies, sold into slavery in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, 
Pennsylvania, Virginia, the Carolinas, Georgia, and Louisiana, and 
hunted with dogs in Connecticut and Florida. Practically dis- 
franchised by our original Constitution, and deprived either by war 
or treaty of nearly every tract of land which to them was desirable, 
and to the white man valuable, they were the prey to the grasping 
avarice of both Jew and Gentile. Step by step a powerful and en- 
terprising race has driven them back from the Atlantic to the far 
West, until now there is scarcely a spot of ground upon which the 
Indians have any certainty of maintaining a permanent abode. 

It may be well in this connection to remember the fact that in 
the main the Europeans were kindly treated by the natives, when 
the former first landed on American shores, and when they came to 
make a permanent settlement were supplied with food, particularly 
the Plymouth and Portsmouth colonists, which enabled them to 
endure the severity of long and cheerless winters. For a time dur- 
ing the early settlement 6f this country, peace and good will pre- 
vailed, but only to be followed by violent and relentless warfare. 

Our relations with the Indians have been governed chiefly by 
treaties and trade, or war and subjugation. By the first we have in- 
variably overreached the natives, and we find the record of broken 
promises all the way from the Atlantic to the Pacific, while many 
of the fortunes of New York, Chicago, St. Louis, and San Francisco 
can be traced directly to Indian tradership. By war the natives 
have been steadily driven toward the setting sun — a subjugated, a 
doomed race. In council the Indians have produced men of char- 
acter and intellect, and orators and diplomats of decided ability, 
while in war they have displayed courage and sagacity of a high 
order. Education, science, and the resources of the world have 
enabled us to overcome the savages, and they are now at the mercy 
of their conquerors. In our treaty relations most extravagant and 
sacred promises have been given by the highest authorities, and 
yet these have frequently been disregarded. The intrusions of the 


white race (occurring now more frequently than ever before), the 
non-compliance with treaty obligations, have been followed by 
atrocities that could alone satisfy a savage and revengeful spirit. 
We need not dwell upon the original causes that have led to the 
present condition of affairs. Facts that have been herein referred 
to make it almost impossible for the two conflicting elements to 
harmonize. No Administration could stop the tidal wave of immi- 
gration that is sweeping over our land ; no political party could 
restrain or control the enterprise of our people, and no man could 
desire to check the march of civilization. Our progress knew no 
bounds. The thirst for gold and the restless desire to push beyond 
the horizon have carried our people over every obstacle. We have 
reclaimed the wilderness and made the barren desert glisten with 
golden harvest ; settlements now cover the hunting-ground of the 
savages ; their country has been cut and divided in every conceiva- 
ble form by the innumerable railroad and telegraph lines and routes 
of communication and commerce ; and the Indians standing in the 
pathway of American progress and the development of the wonder- 
ful resources of this country have become the common enemy and 
have been driven to the remote quarters of our territory. 

During the time that this wonderful change has been wrought, 
it may be asked. Have the Indians as a body made any progress to- 
ward civilization ? and in the light of past history we would be 
prompted to reply, Why should they have abandoned the modes 
of life which Nature had given them to adopt the customs of their 
enemies ? 

In seeking to find the evidence of enlightenment, the results are 
not satisfactory. It is presumed that there is not a race of wild 
men on the face of the globe who worship the Great Spirit more in 
accordance with that religion taught in the days of the patriarchs 
than the natives of this country, and yet after many years of con- 
tact with the civilized people we find the footprints of evil as plen- 
tiful and as common as the evidences of Christianity. Again, in 
early days the Indian tribes were to a considerable extent tillers of 
the soil, but by constant warfare, in which their fields were devas- 
tated and their crops destroyed, they have become entirely subju- 
gated, the mere remnant of their former strength, or pushed out on 
the vast plains of the West where they subsist upon wild fruits and 
the flesh of animals. Could we obtain accurate statistics, we would 
undoubtedly find that there were more acres of ground cultivated 
by the Indians one hundred years ago than at the present time. 


The white race has now obtained such complete control of every 
quarter of the country and the means of communication with every 
section are now so ample that the problem resolves itself down to 
one of two modes of solution, viz., to entirely destroy the race by 
banishment and extermination, or to adopt some humane and prac- 
ticable method of improving the condition of the Indians, and in 
the end make them part and parcel of our great population. The 
first proposition, though it may be found to have thousands of ad- 
vocates in different sections of the country, is too abhorrent to every 
sense of humanity to be considered. The other method is regarded 
as practicable, but its adoption is considered doubtful. 

Looking at the purposes of our Government toward the Indians, 
we find that after subjugating them it has been our policy to collect 
the different tribes on reservations and support them at the expense 
of our people. The Indians have in the main abandoned the hope 
of driving back the invaders of their territory, yet there are some 
who still cherish the thought, and strange as it may seem it is a fact 
that the most noted leader among the Indians advanced such a prop- 
osition to the writer within the last two years. They now stand 
m the position of unruly children to indulgent parents, for whom 
they have very little respect, at times wrongly indulged and again 
unmercifully punished. 

Coming down to our direct or immediate relations with them we 
find that our policy has been to make them wards of the nation, to 
be held under close military surveillance, or else to make them pen- 
sioners under no other restraint than the influence of one or two indi- 
viduals. Living without any legitimate government, without any 
law and without any physical power to control them, what better sub- 
jects or more propitious fields could be found for vice and crime ? 

We have committed our Indian matters to the custody of an 
Indian Bureau, which for many years was a part of the military 
establishment of the Government ; but, for political reasons and to 
promote party interests, this Bureau was transferred to the Depart- 
ment of the Interior. 

Whether or not our system of Indian management has been a 
success during the past ten, fifty, or one hundred years, is almost 
answered in the asking. The Indians, the frontiersmen, the army 
stationed in the West, and the readers of the daily news in all 
parts of our country, can answer that question. Another question 
is frequently asked, 5^y is our management of Indian affairs less 
successful than that of our neighbors across the northern boundary ? 


and it can be answered in a few words. Their system is permanent, 
decided, and just. The tide of immigration in Canada has not 
been as great as along our frontier ; they allow the Indians to live 
as Indians, and do not attempt to force upon the natives the customs 
which to them are distasteful. In our own management it is the 
opinion of a very large number of our people that a change for the 
better would be desirable ; such a measure is now under considera- 
tion, and we have the singular and remarkable phenomenon present- 
ed of the traders, the contractors, the interested officials of the 
West, and many of the best people of the East, advocating one 
scheme, while a great majority of frontier settlers, the officers of 
the army of long experience on the Plains, and many competent 
judges in the East, advocating another. The question is one of too 
grave imi)ortanco to admit interests of a personal or partisan na- 
ture. It is one of credit or discredit to our Government, and of 
vital importance to our people. A commission of eminent legisla- 
tors have been for months investigating the subject, and the great- 
est danger to be feared is that no good will result, or that a mere 
makeshift will be a<l()ptcd by which neither party will be benefited. 
The writer would deprecate any radical change without a clearly 
defined plan for the government and gradual elevation of the In- 
dian race, for such is believed to be both practicable and judicious. 
Now, in order that peace may be secured, the Indians benefited, 
and protection given to the extensive settlements scattered over a 
greater area than the whole of the Atlantic States, it is believed 
that a plan could be devised which would enlist the hearty ap- 
proval and support of men of all parties. The object is surely wor- 
thy of the effort. No body of people whose language, religion, 
and customs are so entirely different from ours can be expected to 
cheerfully and suddenly adopt our own. The change must be 
gradual, continuous, and in accordance with Nature's laws. The 
history of nearly every race that has advanced from barbarism to 
civilization has been through the stages of the hunter, the herds- 
[man, the agriculturist, and finally reaching those of commerce, 
lechanics, and the higher arts. 

It is held, first, that we as a generous people and liberal Govem- 
lent are bound to give to the Indians the same rights that all other 
len enjoy, and if we deprive them of these privileges we must 
khen give them the best government possible. Without any legiti- 
[mate government, and in a section of country where the lawless 
'are under very little restraint, it is useless to suppose that thou- 


sands of wild savages thoroughly armed and mounted can be con- 
trolled by moral suasion. Even if they were in the midst of com- 
fortable and agreeable surroundings, yet when dissatisfaction is 
increased by partial imprisonment and quickened by the pangs of 
hunger, a feeling that is not realized by one man in a thousand in 
civilized life, it requires more patience and forbearance than sav- 
age natures are likely to possess to prevent serious outbreaks. 

The experiment of making a police force composed entirely of 
Indians is a dangerous one, unless they are under the shadow and 
control of a superior body of white troops, and, if carried to any 
great extent, will result in rearming the Indians and work disas- 
trously to the frontier settlements. There would be a slight incon- 
gruity in a government out on the remote frontier, composed of a 
strictly non-combatant for chief, with a 2^osse comitatus of red war- 
riors, undertaking to control several thousand wild savages ! 

The available land that can be given to the Indians is being 
rapidly diminished ; they can not be moved farther West ; and some 
political party or administration must take the responsibility of pro- 
tecting the Indians in their rights of person and property. 

The advantage of placing the Indians under some government 
strong enough to control them and just enough to command their 
respect is too apparent to admit of argument. The results to be 
obtained would be : 

First. They would be beyond the possibility of doing harm, and 
the frontier settlements would be freed from their terrifying and 
devastating presence. 

JSecojid. They would be under officials having a knowledge of 
the Indian country and the Indian character. 

Third. Their supplies and annuities would be disbursed through 
an efficient system of regulations. 

Fourth. Besides being amenable to the civil laws, these officers 
would be under strict military law, subject to trial and punishment 
for any act that would be " unbecoming a gentleman, or prejudicial 
to good order." 

It is therefore suggested and earnestly recommended that a sys- 
tem which has proved to be eminently practicable should receive at 
least a fair trial. As the Government has in its employ men who 
by long and faithful service have established reputations for integ- 
rity, character, and ability which can not be disputed — men who 
have commanded armies, reconstructed States, controlled hundreds 
of millions of public property, and who during years of experience 


on the frontier have opened the way for civilization and Christian- 
ity — it is believed that the services of these officials, in efforts to 
prevent war and elevate the Indian race, would be quite as judicious 
as their employment when inexperience and mismanagement have 
culminated in hostilities. Allowing the civilized and semi-civilized 
Indians to remain under the same supervision as at present, the 
President of the United States should have power to place the wild 
and nomadic tribes under the control of the War Department. 
Officers of known character, integrity, and experience, who would 
govern them and be interested in improving their condition, should 
be placed in charge of the different tribes. One difficulty has been, 
tliat they have been managed by officials too far away, and who 
knew nothing of the men they were dealing with. The Indians, as 
far as possible, should be localized on the public domain, in sections 
of country to which they are by nature adapted. 

The forcing of strong, hardy, mountain Indians from the extreme 
North to the warmer malarial districts of the South is regarded as 
cruel, and should be discontinued. 

Every effort should be made to locate the Indians by families, 
for the ties of relationship among them are much stronger than is 
generally supposed. By this means the Indians will become inde- 
pendent of their tribal relations, and will not be found congregated 
in large and unsightly camps, as are now usually met with about 
their agencies. 

Much of the army transportation now used in scouting for 
Indians and clearing the country could be utilized in transporting 
their stores, breaking the ground, and preparing the way for making 
the Indians 8elf-su})porting. 

All supplies, annuities, and disbursements of money should be 
made under the same system of accountability as now regulates 
army disbursements. The officers in charge should have sufficient 
force to preserve order, patrol the reservations, prevent intrusions, 
recover stolen property, arrest the lawless and those who take refuge 
in Indian camps to shield themselves from punishment for crimes 
or to enable them to live without labor, and to keep the Indians 
upon their reservations and v^^ithin the limits of their treaties. The 
officer in charge would be enabled to control or prevent the sale of 
ammunition, as well as to suppress the sale of intoxicating liquors 
among the Indians. Many thousands of the Indian ponies, useful 
only for the war or the chase, should be sold and the proceeds used 
in the purchase of domestic stock. A large percentage of the 



annual appropriations should be employed in the purchase of cattle 
and other domestic animals ; the Indians desire them, and the Plains 
will support hundreds of thousands of them. They will replace 
the buffalo, the elk, the deer, and the antelope. These cattle and 
other animals should be branded and given to the Indians by fam- 
ilies ; the surplus stock to be sold after three years under such -re- 
stricted rules as would enable the Indians to receive full return for 
their property. From a pastoral people the Indians should be in- 
duced to become agriculturists ; taught the seasons to plant and to 
harvest the variety of valuable products and the use of machinery as 
a means of obtaining food. The step from the first grade to the sec- 
ond would be easily accomplished provided the Indians were directed 
by a firm hand. As they accumulate property and learn industry, 
there would be a threefold incentive to their remaining at peace, 
namely, occupation, the fear of confiscation of property, and the 
loss of the comforts of life. 

The above is no idle theory, as the writer has advocated such a 
policy for years, and by actual and successful experience has demon- 
strated that such was practicable even with the wildest tribes of the 
Plains, a part of whom, eighteen months before, had never shaken 
hands with a white man. 

Two more important measures of improvements are also needed, 
and should be authorized by Congress. 

In all communities there will be found disturbing elements, and, 
to meet this difficulty, courts of justice should be instituted. Fre- 
quently outbreaks and depredations are prompted by a few mischiev- 
ous characters, which could easily be checked by a proper govern- 
ment. This is one secret of success with the Canadian system : 
where disturbances occur, the guilty suffer, and not whole tribes, 
including innocent women and children. 

As a remark from Sitting Bull has been quoted, we will now 
repeat the words of Joseph, who says that " the greatest want of 
the Indian is a system of law by which controversies between Indi- 
ans, and between Indians and white men, can be settled without 
appealing to physical force." He says also that "the want of law 
is the great source of disorder among Indians. They understand 
the operation of laws, and, if there were any statutes, the Indians 
would be perfectly content to place themselves in the hands of a 
proper tribunal, and would not take the righting of their wrongs 
into their own hands, or retaliate, as they now do, without the law." 

Do we need a savage to inform us of the necessity that has 


existed for a century ? As these people become a part of our popu- 
lation, they sliould have some tribunal where they could obtain pro- 
tection in their rights of person and property. A dispmte as to the 
rights of property between an Indian and a white man before a 
white juror might not be decided in exact accordance with jus- 
tice in some localities. Fortunately, our Constitution provides that 
*' the judicial power of the United States shall be vested in one Su- 
preme Cijurt, and such inferior courts as Congress may from time 
to time ordain and establish" ; and it is believed that Congress has 
power, at least in the Territories, to give such jurisdiction either to 
the military courts, or the Territorial courts, or both, as will secure 
justice to the Indians in disputes arising between the Indians and 
the white men. 

The warriors may be made to care for their flocks and herds, 
and the industry of the Indians that is now wasted may be diverted 
to peaceful and useful pursuits ; yet the great work of reformation 
must be mainly through the youth of the different tribes. The 
hope of every race is in the rising generation. This important work 
might well enlist the sympathy and support of all philanthropic and 
Christian people. As we are under obligation to support the tribes 
until they become self-sustaining, it might be advisable to support 
as many as possible of the children of the Indians at places where 
they would be the least expensive to the Government, and where 
they would be under the best influence. As the Government has 
expended hundreds of thousands of dollars in building military 
posts that are no longer occupied or required, and as there are at 
these places excellent buildings and large reservations, it would be 
well to utilize them for educational and industrial purposes. The 
present school system is regarded as too expensive, and productive 
of little good. The children are exposed to the degrading influence 
of camp-life, and the constant moving of the tribes destroys the 
best efforts of instructors. Several years ago the writer recom- 
mended the use of several of our unoccupied military posts, and 
that as many of the youth of the different tribes as could be gath- 
ered voluntarily be placed at these establishments, particularly the 
sons of chiefs, who will in a few years govern the different tribes. 
These could soon be taught the English language, habits of indus- 
try, the benefits of civilization, the power of the white race, and, 
after a few years, return to their people with some education, with 
more intelligence, and with their ideas of life entirely changed for 
the better. They would in turn become the educators of their own 


people, and their influence for good could not be estimated, while 
the expense of educating them would be less than at present, and 
thousands would be benefited thereby. The Indians, as they be- 
come civilized and educated, as they acquire property and pay taxes 
toward the support of the Government, should have the same rights 
of citizenship as all other men enjoy. 

The President of the United States should have power to trans- 
fer from the War Department to the Interior Department any tribe 
that shall become so far civilized and peaceable in its disposition as 
to render it unnecessary to keep its members longer under the con- 
trol of the military power. 

Whenever an emergency arises which has not been foreseen and 
provided for by Congress, such as failure or destruction of their 
crops, the President should have power, on the recommendation of 
the officer in charge or the Governors of the different Territories in 
which they are living, to order the necessary supplies, as has been 
done in several instances to white people, in order to prevent great 
suffering or a serious disturbance of the peace ; such supplies to be 
limited to the smallest necessity, and only until such time as Con- 
gress could take action on the matter. 

A continuation of the system which has prevailed for the past 
twenty years will, it is believed, simply perpetuate a condition of 
affairs the result of which is a chronic state of insecurity and hos- 
tilities. The question may as well be met and decided. A race of 
savages can not by any human ingenuity be civilized and Christian- 
ized within a few years of time, neither will 250,000 people with 
their descendants be destroyed in the next fifty years. The white 
man and the Indian should be taught to live side by side, each 
respecting the rights of the other, and both living under wholesome 
laws, enforced with ample authority and exact justice. Such a gov- 
ernment would be most gratifying and beneficial to the Indians, 
while those men who have invested their capital, and with wonder- 
ful enterprise are developing the unparalleled and inexhaustible 
wealth that for ages has lain dormant in the Western mountains, 
those people who have left the overcrowded centers of the East, 
and whose humble homes are now dotting the plains and valleys of 
the far West, as well as those men who are annually called upon to 
endure greater exposure and suffering than is required by the troops 
of any other nation on the globe, would hail with great satisfaction 
any system that would secure a substantial and lasting peace. 

Nelson A. Miles. 



Old as the art of cryptography is, it may be doubted whether 
it lias made great advances in modern times. The need of it is not 
so pressinir as it used to be. " How often," says Mr. Philip Thick- 
nesse, an English writer on the art of deciphering, " do we not hear 
of a courier being murdered and his dispatches carried off, and for 
what other purpose but information ? and, Avithout the key to deci- 
pher letters so written, to what purpose should they be intercepted 
by such a deed ? " Mr. Thicknesse wrote only a hundred years 
ago ; but already there has been so great an improvement in the 
morals of governments that the custom of killing foreign-office 
messengers for the sake of their dispatch-bags is practically obso- 
lete in diplomacy, and statesmen have ceased to pillage post-offices 
or rifle portmanteaus. If they wish for secret papers now, they 
serve a writ. The telegraph, moreover, has made many of the most 
difficult of the old codes of cipher unavailable. In this category 
must be placed all those composed of arbitrary marks, or of words 
or letters arranged in peculiar positions — in squares, parallelograms, 
columns, etc. Dr. ^Villiam Blair, the author of an interesting 
though now antiquated treatise on " Cipher " in Rees's " Cyclopse- 
dia," gives many curious specimens of alj^habets constructed of ar- 
bitrary signs. Charles I. used a code consisting of short strokes in 
various positions on a line. The Marquis of Worcester invented a 
cipher composed of dots and lines variously ordered within a geo- 
metrical figure. Dr. Blair made one of three dots, placed over, 
under, or on the line, by which he could represent no fewer than 
eighty-one letters, figures, or words. Mr. Thicknesse explained 
Avith much particularity, and also with a highly successful if not 
strictly necessary demonstration of the usefulness of secret writing 
in affairs of state, a plan of conveying information in the disguise 
of music, the notes, rests, expression-marks, etc., standing for letters. 


As cryptography is now used chiefly for telegraphing, modern 
ciphers must belong to one of three classes : 1. Words or letters 
having an arbitrary signification. 2. Numbers representing words 
or letters. 3. Words or letters having their usual signification but 
standing in a false order. 

After all, the art of cryptography loses nothing by being re- 
stricted to the ordinary letters and numerals. The ingenuity ex- 
pended in devising new alphabets of dots, lines, mathematical and 
astronomical symbols, and fantastic forms was wasted. One code 
of this kind is as good or as bad as another, all such " plain ciphers," 
as they are called, in which the meaning of an arbitrary alphabetic 
sign is invariable, being easily read by the exercise of a little pa- 
tience. If a is always represented in the cipher by the same sym- 
bol, it makes no difference to the translator whether that symbol is 
an arrangement of dots, or the sign -F, or the note .^, or the figure 
4, or the letter x. The method of solving a common alphabetic 
cipher depends upon a knowledge of the relative frequency of cer- 
tain letters and combinations of letters in ordinary writing. Count 
how many times each cipher is repeated in the dispatch. The com- 
monest is probably e, that being the letter most used in our lan- 
guage. Next in order are likely to be t, a, o, to, i ; afterward r and 
s / the rarest letters are cc, q,j, z. The double letters ss, tt, II, dd, 
mm, 7in, oo, ee are frequent ; ee, II, and ss are common termina- 
tions, so are s, ed, ty, ly, ing, Hon ; a and u are found as terminals 
of a very few words — for instance, " sea " and " you " ; on and no, 
to and \^ii]ot, of and fo [r] often come together in reversed posi- 
tions ; and is very common, not only as a word in itself, but as a 
part of a word ; that, this, there are also common j the definite and 
indefinite articles, the, a, an, are generally suppressed in telegrams. 
If the words are properly divided in the cipher the interpretation 
will be child's play ; but in most cases all the words are run to- 
gether, or else the divisions are purposely misplaced. At the begin- 
ning of a word h, I, m, n, v, and y must always be followed by a 
vowel ; ^ by ^, r, or a vowel ; q in any position requires after it a 
vowel followed by one of the other vowels. Starting with these 
principles, write opposite the cipher characters all the equivalents 
which you think you can ^x ; if you have guessed right, you will 
soon recognize fragments of words ; if you have guessed wrong, 
some of the letters will be found in impossible combinations, and 
you must try again. It should be observed that the rule as to the 
relative frequency of the letters is only a statement of the average 


computed from a long passage, say of several pages, and it is often 
at fault in short messages. 

A transparent cipher is formed by shifting the alphabet one or 
more steps forward or back, using </, for example, instead of a, h 
for b, I for o, and so on. The only tolerably safe alphabetic cipher 
is one in which the value of every character is constantly changing. 
A convenient code of this kind is known as the key-word system. 
It depends upon a table constructed as follows : 

bcdefghi j klmnopq rs tuvwxyz a 
cdefghi jklmnopqrstuvwxyzab 
defghi j klmnopqrstuvwxyzabc 
efghi j klninopqrstuvwxyzabcd 

fghi i klmnopqrstuvwxyz abode 

fnii klmnopqrstuvwxyz abcdef 
i jklmnopqrstuvwxyzabcdefg 

i i klmnopqrstuvw.xyzabcdefgh 
j klmnopqrs tuvwxyz abcdefghi 
klmnopqrstuvwxyz abcdefghi j 
1 m n o p q r 8 t u V w x y z a b c d e f g h i j k 
mnopqrstnvwxyz abcdefghi j kl 
nopqrstuvwxyzabcdefghi j klm 
opcjrstuvwxyzabcdefghi jklmn 
pqrstuvwxyzabcdefghi j klmno 
qrstuvwxyzabcdefghi jklmnop 
rs tuvwxyz abcdefghi j klmnopq 
Btuvwxyz abcdefghi j klmnopqr 
tuvwxyz abcdefghi j klmnopqrs 
uvwxyz abcdefghi j klmnopqrst 
vwxyzabcdefghi j klmno pqrstu 
wxyz abcdefghi j klmno pqrstuv 
xyzabcdefghi j klmnopqrstuvw 
yzabcdefghi j klmnopqrstuvwx 
zabcdefghi j klmnopqrstuvwxy 

A key-word is chosen, and written over the message which is to 
be turned into cipher. For example, the message is, "Send me 
money," and the key- word is " Fox " ; the words will then be pre- 
pared in this manner : 

Foxf ox foxfo 
Send me money 

Now find the first letter of the key- word (/) in the horizontal row 
at the top of the table, and the first letter of the message {s) in the 


first vertical column at the left. Follow the s line till it intersects 
the f column, and take the letter which is found at the point of 
junction (x) as the first letter of the cipher. Get the other letters 
in the same way. The cipher will read : xski ah rckjm. To trans- 
late it, the key- word must be written over the cipher — 

Foxf ox foxfo 
Xski ab rckjm 

and the previous process reversed ; that is to say, find the first letter 
of the key (/*) at the top of the table, run down the column until 
you come to the first letter of the cipher (a^), and take for the trans- 
lation the letter which stands in a line with that x in the first col- 
umn at the left of the table, i. e., s. This cipher has one weak 
point : If you guess any word in any part of the message, you can 
readily discover the key-word from that, and then the whole secret 
is out. Now, if you know4he subject of the correspondence, an 
inference as to certain words likely to occur in it will not be diffi- 
cult, and in any case there are some common words which are rare- 
ly missing from dispatches of moderate length. Suppose you have 
the cipher xski ah rcJcjm, and you suspect that it contains the word 
" money " ; write that word over the first five letters, and see if the 
table will yield a satisfactory result by the same process last de- 
scribed. It will not. Try the word in connection with other let- 
ters ; when it is placed at the end, you solve the enigma, the letters 
rcJcjm being converted into foxfo. This method of interpretation, 
however, demands so much time and patience, to say nothing of 
a measure of good luck, that for ordinary purposes the cipher is 
quite safe. The key- word system is a very old one, but it has re- 
cently been improved and published with modifications for military 
and commercial purposes. 

A more convenient and secure cipher was devised by Mr. Robert 
Slater, Secretary of the French Atlantic Telegraph Company. This 
is much used by business men, 'and specimens of it were recently 
published in the reports of a famous lawsuit. Mr. Slater's code 
consists of a vocabulary of 25,000 words, numbered consecutively 
from 1, and any number that may be agreed upon by the confeder- 
ates is taken as a key. Suppose the message to be, " Send me 
money," and the key to be 2,500. " Send " in the vocabulary is 
numbered 20,364 ; add 2,500, and you have 22,864, opposite which 
stands the word unbounded. By the same process of addition. 


"me" is converted into pianist, and "money" into precipitation. 
If the key remains invariable, it may be discovered by the system 
of trial-guessing already described ; but the danger of this could be 
avoided by changing the key at every step — adding 2,500, for ex- 
ample, to the first number, 2,G00 to the second, etc. The system 
admits of countless variations. 

In all important political campaigns the use of a telegraphic 
cipher seems to be necessary. It would hasten the Reform millen- 
nium, however, if such messages — being in no right sense of the 
word private telegrams, but a part of the apparatus of popular elec- 
tions — could always be collected by Congress after the close of the 
contest, and exi)osed to public view, on the ground that the people 
ought to know exactly how their business has been conducted. A 
few of the secret messages of the Republican agents and managers 
during the exciting days of November and December, 1876, have 
been examined by various committees of Congress, but they are of 
little importance, and their simple devices for concealment hardly 
deserve to be called a cipher. The following is a part of one of 
Mr. William P]. Chandler's dispatches from Florida ; the rest of it 
being in plain English : 

Noyes and Kasson will be here on Monday, and Robinson must go im- 
mediately to Philadelphia, and then corae here. Can we also have Jones 
apnin ? Rainy for not more than one tenth of Smith's warm apples. You 
can imagine what the cold fellows arc doing. 

Mr. Chandler explained that Bohinsoii meant $3,000 to be de- 
posited in Philadelphia. Jones was $2,000. Rainy indicated 
favorable prospects. SniitlCs warm applies represented two hun- 
dred and fifty majority, and the cold felloics were the Democrats. 
With a few dispatches for comparison, anybody acquainted with 
the history of the Florida canvass could have read such a cipher. 

The search for cipher dispatches on the other side yielded no 
fewer than thirteen different codes, including in elaborate and in- 
genious forms and combinations all the classes of ciphers mentioned 
on a preceding page as being adapted to telegraphic correspondence 
— letters standing for other letters, and used both with fixed and 
shifting keys, two letters standing for one, numbers representing 
letters, numbers representing words and phrases, two numbers 
representing a single letter, words taken in an arbitrary sense, and 
words transposed so that the message was unintelligible without a 
key. In the most important dispatches two or more of these sys- 


terns were combined to make a cipher within a cipher. A few 
messages in Oregon were disguised by merely substituting b for a, 
and so on through the alphabet ; thus, cf7ipsf fyqmjdju meant " Be 
more explicit." This solution would occur to almost any intelli- 
gent person at first sight ; but the cipher was difficult to translate 
on account of the many blunders which occurred in transmitting it. 
An alphabet in which every letter was represented by two other 
letters arbitrarily selected, looked harder. Here is a specimen of 


The character of this cipher, however, was easily determined. 
The abundance of double letters showed that it was not a common 
alphabetic cipher in which each letter is represented by a single and 
invariable symbol ; and the fact that it contained only ten of the 
letters of the alphabet proved that it was not read by a shifting 
key. It must therefore be based upon combinations of letters. This 
being assumed, a translation was instantly made with the help of a 
dispatch which was partly in plain English, proper names only be- 
ing written in cipher. It began : " Gave ijpaishsli charge of ityyi- 
tns / he sent to 'mapinsimyypUt but not to the other. Brevard 
returns sent you to-day." The first cipher word was evidently the 
name of a person ; the .second and third appeared to be names of 
counties. If we suppose each cipher letter to be composed of two 
characters, we should have for ityyitns a word of four letters, the 
first and third of which are the same. The dispatch belongs to the 
Florida correspondence, and the only Florida county which meets 
these conditions is " Dade." The letters of Dade are repeated in 
the next word, where they fit the interpretation " Brevard " ; and all 
the conjectures so far made accord with the rules respecting the 
average frequency of letters. Applying the alphabet thus begun to 
the dispatch quoted above, we obtain the following fragment : 
" . . V6 . . . dred d . . . ar.^'' which is readily converted into " five 
hundred dollars " ; and the rest follows rapidly. 

An alphabetic cipher composed entirely of double numbers gave 
more trouble. There were not many specimens of it, and it hap- 
pened that the general rule of the relative frequency of letters was 
here at fault. The fact that the cipher was double having been de- 
termined by the same circumstances observed in the double-letter 
code, the interpretation was finally obtained by a series of trial- 
guesses on the following dispatch : 



8455893 1 93276689272042663455 




9393S2 18396682203442824893448296 












Tho (late, Higiiaturo, aii<l address led to the supposition that the 
message might refer to a dispute about the powers of the Governor 
in canvassing the Presidential returns. The word " canvass " was ac- 
cordingly searched for, and at the end of the twelfth line the follow- 
ing arrangement of numbers was found : 84, 66, 33, 87, 66, 27, 27. 
This j)roved to be a fortunate guess, and, having six letters to 
begin with, the alphabet was completed without further difficulty. 

Three or four codes were studied in which words were used in 
an arbitrary sense, or numbers substituted for certain "tell-tale" 
words. These were read, with more or less assurance of correct- 
ness, by collating several dispatches and considering the context ; 
but whore the number of specimens is small the interpretation of 
most of the words is no better than guess-work, and it can not 
be depended upon. These ciphers, however, always excite sus- 
picion, and they were not employed for communications of much 
importance, except in combination with another system, to be 
examined later. The " Dictionary Cipher " is a system in which 
a substitute is found for every word in the message by turn- 
ing a certain number of pages in a vocabulary previously chosen. 
The greater part of the Oregon correspondence was conducted 
in this cipher, the book \ised being a small " Household Eng- 
lish Dictionary," published in London. The secret was betrayed 
by somebody who had employed the same code in business trans- 
actions, and the process of deciphering after that was little more 
VOL. cxxviii. — xo. 268. 21 


than a mechanical operation. A number of dispatches in a dic- 
tionary cipher, however, were found in the Florida and South 
Carolina bundles, without any clew to the book by which they were 
made. It was assumed that the volume was a small one, handy to 
carry in traveling, and that as a matter of convenience the number 
of pages to be turned would not be more than six or seven. All 
the small dictionaries accessible were accordingly tried with one of 
the dispatches, and an easy translation was at last made with 
" Webster's Pocket Dictionary." The key varied, being applied by 
turning back sometimes one page, sometimes two, three, four, or 
five pages. In Oregon the translation went forward instead of 
back, and the number of pages was always four. The dictionary 
cipher is clumsy to use, easy to detect, and liable to blunders which 
are not readily corrected. 

By far the largest as well as the most momentous part of the 
recently disclosed correspondence was conducted by means of an 
elaborate system of substitution and transposition cipher combined. 
Arbitrary equivalents were first written in place of the important 
or " tell-tale " words, and then the whole dispatch was transposed. 
The substituted equivalents were sometimes proper nouns (gener- 
ally geographical names, as America, France, Russia, Copenhageii) 
and sometimes numbers. The transposition of the words was made ac- 
cording to fixed rules or sequences of numbers, and the sentences were 
rearranged for translation by the use of a duplicate key in the hands 
of the person to whom the dispatch was addressed. Here is a speci- 
men of a message from Columbia to New York ; it is only the begin- 
ning of a long telegram, but the sense is complete as far as it goes : 

Now bring safe river thing stuff river Warsaw man would as all Copen- 
hagen to have on Warsaw for Scliuylkill through Kochester Schuylkill 
receiving river the looks at Danube work received. 

It is the combination of the transposition and substitution sys- 
tems which makes this cipher difficult to interpret. Dislocated sen- 
tences can be rearranged with a little patience when the meaning of 
the words is known ; and a substitution cipher, if enough specimens 
of it are at hand, can be readily interpreted by the context. But 
here the significance of the most important words and the context 
are both unknown. The problem, accordingly, is to rearrange a 
transposed sentence without understanding all the words. The feat 
would have been almost impossible if the translators had not been 
supplied with a very large number of dispatches. The first step 
was a fortunate guess at the meaning of one of the commonest of 



the subslitutiuii ciphers, Warsaic. This, after a few trials, was 
aijsumed to be " telegram," and the following message of ten words 
was then easily deciphered : 

Warsaw they read all unchanj^ed last are idiots cant situation. 


Can't read last telegram. Situation unchanged. They are all idiots. 

The same order of words was tried on other telegrams. It would 
fit messages of just ten words, but no others. Hence the key evi- 
dently varied with the length of the dispatch. It was now observed 
that the number of words in a message was invariably a multiple of 
five. There were a few telegrams of ten words, a few of fifteen, 
many of twenty, twenty-five, and so on, and they ran up to two 
hundred, always proceeding by fives. This showed that the con- 
federates had taken an assortment of sequences, or blocks of num- 
bers, arranged them in some arbitrary order, and adopted them as 
the keys for transposing and rearranging the dispatches, the num- 
ber of words in the message being the clew by which the receiver 
knew what key or combination of keys he must use in the transla- 
tion. To reconstruct these sequences by collating dispatches of 
equal length was a work that demanded only time and patience. 
Five thirty-word telegrams were first written in parallel columns, 
and every word numbered, thus : 

rint 4Up«lcb. 

8«con(I dtipatch. 









































































Third dispatch. 


Fourth dupatch. 

















Fifth dlBpateh. 































The task now was to find an order of the numbers which would 
make sense in all five columns. To do this, little groups of words 
were tried together, and tested by comparison with the parallel 
columns. There were a few phrases which seemed to adjust them- 
selves naturally ; in the first dispatch, for example, we have the 
words " adjourned until to-morrow," and if we look for a nomina- 
tive to adjourned we discover that there is no word in the column 
that will do except London. This order of numbers, 29, 27, 19, 28, 
gives in the second column " us out if a," and the words that pre- 
cede " us out" are evidently " intend (25) to (5) count " (10). The 
sequences thus begun are easily continued ; when the path is lost 
in one column it is found in another ; and so the difiiculty about 
disposing of the " blind words " is avoided. 

The proper key for a message of 30 words being ascertained, 
sequences of 15, 20, and 25 were next constructed in the same 
manner. Keys of 35 and 40 were also made, but they proved to 
be merely repetitions of shorter ones, and the work was therefore 
supposed to be complete with the key of 30. But as the process of 
translating went on, unexpected difficulties presented themselves. 
The keys fitted so perfectly in many instances that there could be 
no doubt of their correctness, but there were some dispatches which 
they did not fit at all. It was soon discovered that for every one 
of the five blocks of numbers there were tioo keys, or sequences, 
either of which the confederates used -at pleasure, and still later it 
appeared that the second set of keys was a mathematical correlative 
of the first set, so that any dispatch could be translated by either 
one of two keys. For example, key III. consists of the following 
sequence of 15 numbers, 8, 4, 1, 7, 13, 5, 2, 6, 11, 14, 9, 3, 15, 12, 10, 
and the correlative key IV. is 3, 7, 12, 2, 6, 8, 4, 1, 11, 15, 9, 14, 5, 
10, 13. The beginning of a certain message is translated according 
to key III. by numbering the words consecutively from 1 to 15, and 
then picking them out in the order given above, thus : 

1234 5 678 9 

Too last do received answer night late Warsaw under- 

10 11 12 13 14 15 

stand me don't want to quite you, etc. 

But precisely the same translation is obtained by writing over the 
words the figures of the correlative key IV., and then picking out 
the words in their natural numerical order, thus : 


3 7 12 2 6 8 4 1 11 

Too last do received answer night late Warsaw under- 

15 14 5 10 13 

Btand me don't want to quite you. 

The messages having been transposed, the next step was the 
translation of the substitution ciphers, or " blind words." In most 
cases this was easily done by the context. Words like London 
(Returning Board), Rochester (votes), Syracuse (majority), Ithaca 
(Democrats), Ilacana (Republicans), Copenhagen (money), were 
so plain that there could not be a doubt as to their meaning. 
Others {Anna, Charles, Jane, Thomas^ William, etc.) proved to 
have no meaning at all ; they were " nulls," thrown in to fill out 
the dispatch to the number of words requii'ed for the key, and, 
when the transposition was effected, they always fell together at 
the end. Numerals were represented by the names of rivers, and 
zero by the word river. The precise equivalents of several of these 
ciphers were clqarly fixed by the telegrams in which the figures of 
votes and majorities were reported ; for example, a South Carolina 
correspondent, after telegraphing the majority for the Hayes elec- 
tors on the face of the returns, adds, "^ Iihi?ie of Tilden's within 
Moselle llianies river of their lowest." Now, it is known that one 
of the Democratic electors was only 230 votes behind the lowest 
Republican elector. Tliat settles the meaning of Rhine, Moselle, 
Thames, and river. The interpretation thus reached is confirmed 
by numerous other instances. All the other numbers are equally 
well ascertained ; and, in fact, there is hardly a " blind word " in 
the whole vocabulary — there is certainly none of any importance — 
of which the meaning is not capable of demonstration. 

John R. G. Hassakd. 



The Diary of a Sportsman, 

and other Novels. 
Smoke : A Novel. 

Virgin Soil : A Novel. 
Childhood and Youth. 
War and Peace. 

Anna Karenina : A Novel. 

Since the time that Russia and Russian literature have ceased 
to be an " unknown land," and the past development and possible 
future of tlie Russian people have become an object of study and 
interest for European and American observers, but tvro Russian 
authors have succeeded in acquiring a world-wide fame. These 
are Ivan Tm-genieff and Count Leo Tolstoy. In selecting them as 
representatives of the Russian national literature, the critical judg- 
ment of the public has been guided by a true sense of their talent, 
their poetic force, and national importance. 

Turgenieff and Tolstoy stand undisputedly at the head of the 
Russian literature of fiction, and as fiction has for a long time been 
the only and is still the most important form of Russian literature 
in general, as well as one of the most powerful instruments of social 
progress in Russia, both novelists may be considered the chief rep- 
resentatives of the Russian national intellect, of its past and pres- 
ent aspirations and developments. As to their creative poetical 
genius both stand on a nearly equal level. Both are endowed with 
that keenness of observation, that deep instinctive knowledge of 
the human heart, that peculiar magnetic affinity between the poet 
and the nation he belongs to, which the sacred flame of genius alone 
confers on its elect. But they differ widely as to the character and 
tendency of their works — so widely indeed, that a comparison be- 
tween them becomes scarcely possible. Turgenieff is above and 
before all the poet of Russian peasant-life, with all its pleasures 
and woes. The plain, monotonous existence of daily toil led by 


the Russian laborer in the midst of the boundless steppe inspires 
our great novelist with the highest poetry, with the most touching 
and pathetic feeling. Even nature, which he loves so passionately 
and describes with such masterly art, assumes under his pen the 
peculiar coloring which the simple imagination of the people sheds 
on it. For the pictures of Russian peasant-life he has reserved his 
brightest colors. To the healing of the sorrows and wTongs of the 
peasant he has devoted all the power of his genius. 

On the other hand, Count Leo Tolstoy may be called the liter- 
ary representative of the higher classes of Russian society. In his 
works we find a true and vivid picture of the Russian harstvo 
(nobility), with all its peculiar characteristics, its poetry, its social 
and moral i>hilosophy. Violently severed from the rest of the peo- 
ple by a premature and artificial civilization imposed on them "by 
order of the Czar," corrupted by the double influence of the powder 
they exercised over their serfs and of the Czar's despotism under 
which they were themselves compelled to bow their heads, natu- 
rallv endowed with a passionate but inconsistent and somewhat 
indolent disposition, the Russian nobles, or at least the most intel- 
ligent and best educated among them, had at all times a marked 
tendency toward a contemplative, brooding, melancholy mode of 
life, devoid of action and full of a barren, self-consuming skepticism, 
which gradually destroyed all passion and individuality of charac- 
ter, and, to use the language of that Danish prince who might well 
have passed for the forefather of the Russian harm, "o'ershad- 
owed their resolutions with the pale cast of thought." Count Tol- 
stoy is the historian, the physiologist, the poet of this peculiar type. 
All his works, taken as a whole, present a complete natural history 
of that type, but a natural history written by one w^ho himself be- 
lonjrs to those whom he describes, who has felt in his own heart 
all the pangs of their melancholy, who himself labors under their 
faults and possesses their virtues. Social problems have little or 
no interest for him. He touches them in his novels only so far as 
their existence reflects in some manner on the development of his 
fond type. lie dwells with preference on such subjects as arise out 
of the complicated relations of civilized life, and which require 
from the author the finest and most delicate psychological analysis. 
In this sphere of fiction he is a thorough master, an artist of aston- 
ishing creative power ; but to the life of the people he is a stran- 
ger, his sympathy for its simple forms seems affected, and when he 
does happen to draw a picture of peasant-life it gives us the impres- 


sion as if a well-educated and benevolent nobleman told us wliat "he 
had seen of country-life in passing through a village in his travel- 
ing-carriage and four. 

The same contrast existing in the character of their works 
marks also the personal appearance of each of the great Russian 
novelists. Turgenieff's tall, somewhat stooping figure, his long, 
white hair and flowing beard, his mild blue eyes and broad features, 
to which a good-natured smile gives a peculiarly benevolent and 
dreamy expression — all suggest in him one of those village patri- 
archs whom one occasionally meets in Russia, who have seen and 
thought and suffered a good deal during their long, eventful life, 
and who on their decline have acquired the practice, if not the 
theory, of that great truth, that "to understand means to forgive." 
Leo Tolstoy is a good deal younger than his great literary contem- 
porary ; he is now some forty-five years of age. His features are 
not handsome, but carry the marks of deep thought, of serious 
study, and of tormenting inner conflicts of the heart and mind. 
He is a perfect type of what the Germans call a *' Grtibler." In 
his appearance, his demeanor, his way of speaking, he betrays a man 
accustomed to subject each feeling, each step in life, to a subtile, 
searching analysis. He is himself what he describes in his novels, 
the " Russian Hamlet." 

Of all the numerous novels Turgenieff has published, and every 
one of which was looked upon as an event in the literary circles of 
all civilized nations, it is his first works, " The Sportsman's Diary " 
and a few other small novels which appeared about the same pe- 
riod (1846-'54), for which he is especially entitled to an immortal 
fame. Those early works are all positive creations of his genius. 
Their subjects are taken from that Russian peasant-life for which 
Turgenieff has always shown such heartfelt sympathy, and the 
beauties and poetic interest of which he was the first to reveal to 
the European public. " The Sportsman's Diary " consists of a 
series of disconnected sketches, the result of observations made by 
a sportsman during his rambles through the woods and steppes of 
central Russia. This " sportsman " is in most cases undoubtedly 
Turgenieff himself, who spent nearly all his early youth on his 
family estates in the province of Orel. Each of these sketches is 
a perfect gem of poetry and simple dramatic force. One idea per- 
vades them all : the desire to show to Russian society all the base- 
ness and injustice of serfdom, all the evil influences it exercised on 
the naturally mild, tolerant, and eminently gifted nature of the 


Russian peasant. Turgcnieff, in his " Sportsman's Diary," was one 
of the foremost pioneers of emancipation in Russia, and this title 
to immortality shall never fail him as long as a human heart still 
beats for liberty and truth ! 

In one of these sketches the artist shows us an old peasant living 
in the midst of pathless woods all alone. He is never seen in the 
neiirhborinf villa*T^es. Some hold him for a sorcerer, others for a 
highwayman, but nobody knows whence he came, nor what his past 
life has been. Lost in the woods during a terrible storm, the 
" sportsman " meets with that mysterious figure. While the wind 
is howling around and flashes of lightning illumine the dark forest, 
the okl man tells him his dreary story — how in his youth he had 
had a beautiful wife, and how his master, the harin, fell in love 
with her and took her away from him. Once on a hot summer day 
the sportsman sees a peasant stretched nearly senseless on the road- 
side. He approaches him and hears that he is ill and poor and un- 
able to do the work for his master ; everything he possesses has 
been sold to i)ay the taxes and he himself has been whipped nearly 
to death. " Now," he exclaims, " all is indifferent to me ! There 
is nothing to rob me of any more ; they can not make me more 
miserable than I am ! " 

And so in each of these sketches a vivid picture, awful in its 
natural nimplicity, of all the horrors of slavery arises before us, 
adorned with the magic beauties of nature Avith which the miserable, 
down-trodden serf lives in constant communion. By far the most 
remark:ii)le of these antislavery sketches is, however, the one enti- 
tled " Mumu," which, though not forming a part of the " Sports- 
man's Diary," belongs to the same period of Turgenieff's literary 
career. It is the story of a deaf and dumb peasant and his dog, to 
which the former is passionately attached and which he calls by the 
only sounds he is able to pronounce, rnu-mu! The bark of this dog 
once happens to disturb the slumbers of the mistress, the harynia, 
a nervous old maid, who gives the order to drown the beast. The 
poor deaf and dumb man obeys, and drowns his only friend 
with his own hand. This plain story, the subject of which might 
appear almost trivial in its simplicity, is told by Turgcnieff with 
such a pathetic feeling and in a language so full of poetic force, 
that it produces on the reader a powerful and lasting impres- 

There can be no doubt as to the fact that the " Sportsman's Di- 
ary," and especially " Mumu," contributed in a great measure toward 


gaining tlie hearts of Russian society for the holy cause of eman- 
cipation. With the accomplishment of this work Turgenieff seems 
to have spent all he had of love and kindly feeling for his people. 
He ceased to draw his subjects exclusively from Russian peasant- 
life. The frame of his works became wider, and embraced the 
whole Russian society. But at the same time the faculty of cre- 
ating positive types seemed to forsake him. Emerging from the 
sphere of the plain workingman's life, the poet perceived in all the 
rest of society nothing but a dark crowd of unprincipled men or 
of weak skeptics, incapable of any true feeling, devoid of a set pur- 
pose and guiding rule in life. For them he has nothing but gall 
and contempt in his heart, satire and mockery on his lips. The 
only being whom he exempts from this sweeping verdict is the 
Russian woman. She stands aloof from all the baseness of practi- 
cal life — of that sham which is officially called " civilization " in 
Russia. Her heart is whole and sincere in its passions as in its 
faults, and is exalted far above the petty " Hamlets " who play the 
first parts among the male portion of society. For this reason 
woman is always the suffering party in Turgenieff's novels. She 
suffers or perishes by the love of a man unworthy of her, standing 
far below her in point of energy, honor, and courage. 

This negative view of Russian society pervades all the larger 
and smaller novels of Turgenieff, from " Rudin " to " Fathers and 
Sons," and reaches its climax in " Smoke," where not one single 
redeeming figure is to be found. Here the novelist seems utterly 
to despair of his own country and of its future. " Smoke " is the 
literary death-knell of the aristocratic, intelligent class of Russians, 
such as the double influence of serfage and autocracy had shaped it. 
Even the women of that class find no more pity at the poet's hands : 
Irene, the heroine of "Smoke," is a designing adventuress who, 
after having once had the " honor " to attract the attention of " a 
very high personage " (by whom the Emperor himself is evidently 
meant), avails herself of the prominent position thus afforded to 
her for getting on in the world and forwarding her husband's ad- 
ministrative career. The whole upper class of Russian society is 
represented by Turgenieff as a set of hollow, conceited fools, or of 
designing, corrupted, and unprincipled intrigants. As a biting and 
merited satire on "liberal" Russia of modern days, "Smoke" has 
a great social importance. Appearing as it did during the decay 
of the aristocratic period of modern Russian history, it sums up the 
results of the latter, and marks at the same time the beginning of a 


new national epoch, the awakening of the people itself to an inde- 
pendent political and social life. 

Turgenieff is, however, unable to understand rightly this new 
feature in the intellectual development of modem Russia, as his 
" Bazaroff " in " leathers and Sons," and especially his last novel, 
" Virgin Soil," undoubtedly prove. The uncouth, energetic repre- 
sentatives of " Young Russia " are utter strangers to the veteran 
poet. In representing them as children of that same aristocracy 
whom he sneers at in " Smoke," Turgenieff commits a grave error. 
As it often happens vnih. the great men of literature or history, 
Turgenieff fails to recognize a social event which he himself has 
helped in bringing about ; he does not perceive that the men whom 
he now treats as a set of turbulent, half -crazy children are but the 
sons of that same people whose cause he formerly espoused with so 
much ardor. The social importance of Turgenieff's writings in 
the intellectual development of Russian society has ended with 
"Smoke." But his fame as a poet, as a profound judge of the 
human heart and its passions, will never die, for it belongs to all 
nations, to all ages. 

Count Leo Tolstoy is in this respect Turgenieff's equal, indeed, 
in the subtileness of his psychological analysis, perhaps even his 
superior. But in everything else both authors are, as we have al- 
ready mentioned, the very antipodes of each other. The first of 
Tolstoy's works, which appeared shortly before the Crimean war, 
" Childhood and Youth," marked the place its author was to 
occupy in Russian fiction. This strange book, Avhich can scarcely 
be termed "a novel," contains a full and eminently poetic ac- 
count of the education, moral and intellectual development of a 
young Russian nobleman. The first part of it, " Childhood," is a 
poem of Russian domestic life, of wonderful beauty and purity. 
The author dwells with fond tenderness on every petty incident in 
the early life of his hero. Prince Nechludoff. With a masterly art 
and a profound knowledge of those mysterious laws by which from 
a series of early impressions the nature and character of man are 
gradually shaped, the author shows us how the idle and monotonous 
country life in Russia, devoid of intellectual interests, works on the 
mind and imagination of a naturally clever, impressible boy. Nech- 
ludoff becomes a dreamer, utterly detached from the realities of 
every-day life, thirsting for higher, metaphysical science. The 
studies in abstract philosophy which he pursues at the university 
with indefatigable ardor give a new direction to his morbid mind ; 


he becomes a skeptic, an infidel, and thence rushes headlong into 
the coarsest form of sensualism, into a life of dissipation and de- 
bauchery of every kind, which ultimately leads him through a series 
of the bitterest deceptions to — suicide. 

This type of the Russian nobleman, created by Tolstoy, a type 
we meet with in almost every one of his novels, and his method 
of treating it, might lead to the conclusion that Tolstoy, as a por- 
trayer of Russian society, is still more negative, still more discon- 
solate than Turgenieff. Yet it is not so. While the latter finds 
in the Russian aristocracy nothing but an artificial graft on the 
nation's body, rotten to the core, and past any attempt at regenera- 
tion, the former, on the contrary, though perfectly aware of the 
vices and foibles of the class he describes, seeks to reviv^e it by an 
ideal born out of its own life, by a philosophy corresponding to all 
its peculiar characteristics. 

This ideal is the family with all the feelings, duties, and plea- 
sures it engenders, and severed, in order to preserve its entire purity, 
from all interests and passions of public life. This philosophy is a 
peculiar sort of fatalistic creed, somewhat similar to Schopenhauer's 
pessimism, or Hartmann's " Philosophy of the Unconscious." Ac- 
cording to this creed, the individual is utterly powerless in the 
making of a nation's history. The progress of the human race is 
the result of elementary forces working in and by the masses, un- 
consciously for the latter, and the greatest wisdom on the part of 
the individual consists in submitting passively to these mysterious 
forces. To the expounding of this curious philosophy Tolstoy has 
devoted his most important work, " War and Peace." For its sub- 
ject he has selected one of the most eventful epochs of modem 
Russian history — the great national struggle with Napoleon in 
1812. In a series of masterly-drawn pictures he attempts to prove 
that all the so-called great men of the time, from Napoleon himself 
down to the last of the Russian generals, were nullities in them- 
selves, and acquired their importance only from the fact of being 
blind instruments of a mysterious Something which pushed them 
forward. It must be confessed that this somewhat childish philoso- 
phy often produces on the reader an almost ludicrous impression, 
reminding him of the well-knoTVTi French adage, " II n'y a pas de 
grand horn me pour son valet de chambre ! " 

An illustration of Tolstoy's ideal of family life, which he but 
slightly touches in "War and Peace," we find in his last novel, 


finished a year ago, " Anna Karenina." As a true and artistic pic- 
ture of " liigli lite " this novel is a masterpiece without an equal, 
perhaps, in any literature. In one frame the author has combined 
two love-stories — the one pure and quiet, the other passionate and 
criminal. The latter, the love between the heroine, Anna, and 
the brilliant aide-de-camp, Prince Vronsky, is conducted by Tolstoy 
step by step to its tragical end with a pitiless logic, and a pro- 
found knowledge of all the subtile instincts of the human heart, of 
all the innumerable prejudices and peculiarities of Russian aristo- 
cratic life. The scene of the heroine's suicide, which she commits 
by throwing herself under the wheels of a railway-train, is in its 
tragical grandeur one of the most remarkable dramatic effects in 
modem literature. licside these two rebel hearts, who seek their 
own way to love and happiness in open defiance of the decrees of 
society, the author has placed another pair — the plain, unsophisti- 
cated country gentleman Levin and the young girl who ultimately 
becomes his wife. Their romance, disturbed for a moment by the 
interference of the disorderly element in the person of Yronsky, 
flows on quietly and peacefully. The young Mrs. Levin becomes 
an utterly prosaic and even somewhat slovenly materfamilias ; her 
husband remams what he always had been, a quiet country gentle- 
man, ignoring entirely all manner of social "problems" or political 
" questions," raising his corn and potatoes with the persistency, if 
not with the civic courage, of a Cincinnatus. And at the close of 
the book we seem to hear the author exclaiming, " Go and do like- 
wise ! " 

Such is the moral and social creed of this great poet of Russian 
aristocracy. The reader will not be slow in detecting all its shal- 
Ipwness. An author who says to the class he represents : " You are 
estranged from the rest of the people— you are by nature lazy and 
indolent, that is true, but no matter ; be still more indolent, retire 
once for all from public life, bury yourselves in your families, on 
your estates, and you shall be saved ! " — such an author is uncon- 
sciously writing a bitterer satire on that class than any of its most 
implacable enemies could have done. 

Thus the two greatest novelists of modern Russia, both born 
and bred in that class of Russian society which has until now held 
undisputed the scepter of intellectual and political power — both, 
the one with a set purpose, the other unconsciously, pass a death- 
warrant against the present social organization of their country. 


In their works, as in a mirror, the actual condition of Russian so- 
ciety is reflected with a merciless accuracy. They are not only the 
poets, they are the physiologists, the historians, of their people, and, 
by the powerful influence they exert on the public mind, they may 
yet prove to be, in defiance of the proverb, " prophets in then* own 
land ! " 

S. E. Shevitch. 


Modem Fishers of Men among the Various Sexes^ Sects, and Sets of Chart- 
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Nelson & Phillips. IGnio, pp. 48. 

The Early Years of Christianity. By E. De Peessens^, D. D. Trans- 
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^Esthetics. By Eugene Yeenon. Translated by W. H. Aemsteong, B. A. 
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Richard C. Anderson, of the Continental Army. By E. L. Andeeson. 
New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 16mo, pp. 63. 

A Glossary of Biological, Anatomical, and Physiological Terms. By 
Thomas Dunman. 12mo, pp. 161. 

The Commercial Products of the Sea; or, Marine Contributions to Food, 
Industry, and Art. By P. L. Simmonds. New York : D. Appleton & Co. 
12mo, pp. 484. 

Gerrit Smith: A Biography. By Octavius Beooks Feothingham. 
New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 12mo, pp. 371. 

Demonology and Devil-Lore. By Moncuee Daniel Conway, M. A. 2 
vols. New York : Henry Holt & Co. 8vo, pp. 428, 472. 

Taxation Reform; or. The Best and Fairest Means of raising the Public 
Revenue. By Professor A. Ceestadoeo. London : Longmans, Green & Co. 
16mo, pp. 30. 




ArraL, 1879. 

No. 269. 

Tros Tyriusque raihi nullo discrimine agetur. 


649 k 551 BROADWAY. 





APRTL, 1879. 

A»T. Paoi 

I. Retribution in Politics. By Tuomas A. Hen- 
dricks ....... 337 

IL The Public Schools of England. By Thomas 

Hughes, Q. C. . . . . . 352 

IH. German Socialism in America . . . 372 

rV. A Friend of Lord Byron. By Henry James, Jr. 388 

V. The Census of 18b0. By George Walker . 393 

VI. The Pronunciation of the Latin Language. Part 

II. By W. W. Story . . . .405 

VH. An Indian's Views of Indian Affairs. By Young 
Joseph, Chief of the Nez Percys. With an In- 
troduction by the Right Rev. W. H. Hare, D. D. 412 

VIII. Hartmann's "Religion of the Future." By M. 

A. Hardaker ...... 434 

IX. Recent Miscellaneous Literature : Weisse's Ori- 
gin, Progress, and Destiny of the English Language 
and Literature ; Holmes's John Lothrop Motley ; 
Conway's Demonology and Devil-Lore ; Mrs. Kem- 
ble's Record of a Girlhood ; Tyler's History of 
American Literature. By A. R. McDonough . 438 

Publications Received .... 446 

The Editor disclaims responsibility for the opinions 
of contributors, whether their articles are signed or 



APKIL, 1879. 



Nearly ten years ago the right of the colored man to vote was 
made as firm and secure as a constitutional provision could establish 
it. As a question of public policy and justice it was settled. The 
people passed upon and decided that. There remained but the tests 
and ordeal of experience. It was not to be disturbed or questioned 
except for great and permanent evils. This was the condition of 
the right of colored suifrage when two important facts attracted at- 
tention. The first Avas, that the Congressional representation of 
the Southern States had been greatly strengthened ; and the second 
was, that the colored vote could no longer be relied upon by the 
Republican party, but that it was rapidly passing into the Demo- 
cratic party, resulting in a Congressional delegation from the 
South almost entirely Democratic, and in a solid South. Confident 
possession and control of that vote were followed by such disap- 
pointment at its loss as attends the loss of property deemed most 

The disappointment was intensified by the reflection that the 
entire colored population is now to be counted in apportioning 
representation among the several States, and that the political influ- 
ence of the South is thereby increased. Dissatisfaction and a 
spirit of resistance appeared among those who had looked upon the 
colored vote as permanently secure to their party. They spoke 
VOL. cxxvni. — NO. 269. 23 


freely, sometimes harshly, about striking down the increased South- 
em representation, and seemed willing to abandon colored suffrage, 
if necessary to that end. It was because of this sentiment and feel- 
ing that the discussion of negro enfranchisement in the last num- 
ber of the " Review " was possible. Two or three years ago it 
would have been welcomed neither by editor nor reader. And 
from this it appears how little the sentiment of humanity, and how 
much the consideration of party advantage, influenced and con- 
trolled the action of many who at one time were most clamorous 
for negro suffrage. Negro suffrage rests upon the natural right of 
the citizen, or upon constitutional provision, or upon both. I was 
opposed to its recognition and establishment in the Constitution of 
the United States ; but, when declared to be so established, I recog- 
nized it as fixed and permanent. And, in the article which I con- 
tributed to the series, I thought it quite suflicient to maintain that 
it was thus fixed and permanent ; and I endeavored to show that, 
under favorable opportunities, its exercise need not be hurtful to 

In his article. Governor Hampton treats the question as settled, 
and says that, whatever may have been the policy or the motives of 
men, the right conferred by the Constitution is irrevocable, and that 
it is now the part of statesmanship to give its exercise that direction 
which will be most beneficial and least hurtful to the body politic. 
Speaking for the people of Mississippi, Mr. Lamar, with great force 
and directness, maintains that, being made a free man, a property- 
holder, and a tax-payer, the negro could not be excluded from the 
" privilege and duty," the " right and obligation " of the citizen to 
vote. He mentions the striking fact that, in 1869, " the white 
people of Mississippi unanimously voted at the polls in favor of 
ratifying the enfranchising amendment. Mr. Stephens treats the 
question of negro suffrage as settled, and not to be disturbed ; and 
declares it the duty of all friends of humanity to give it a fair trial, 
" with an earnest and hopeful effort for its success." I have grouped 
the arguments of these three distinguished men of the South that 
the justice and liberality of their views may distinctly and together 

The most striking quality of General Garfield's argument is 
that, while in set phrase he is for free suffrage, in tone and spirit 
he makes an apology for failure. Conceding that the property 
rights of the colored people are every year being more and more 
respected, he yet asserts that it is a mockery to say that suffrage 


has been free. With marked emphasis he declares that in many- 
parts of the South the benefits of suffrage have been defeated by- 
fraud, violence, and threats of loss of employment. Are we com- 
pelled to take a view so discouraging ? Or is it but the language of 
the partisan ? In respect to political rights, the races are equal. 
Together they are now to conduct public affairs. Is there such in- 
compatibility that the races can not harmonize in maintaining good 
government ? Will the stronger race domineer over the weaker ? 
This has been the prediction of many. The hopes of the people re- 
jected the prediction. Now, however, a strong man, one who has ob- 
served much, and whose hopes have all been for the success of what 
Mr. Blaine speaks of as an experiment, declares it in a large degree 
a failure. If the experiment has failed during these last ten years, 
why has it failed ? During much of that time the army of the 
United States was distributed throughout the South. It was used 
to maintain the supremacy of the Republican party, through the 
instrumentality of the colored vote. For like purpose the Federal 
judiciary was used in many localities. It may not be claimed that 
there was then good government in the South. It was bad — bad 
for the colored man, as it was for the white man It was the sub- 
stitution of force and fear for the constitutional government by the 
people. That was the period of corruption, and strife, and blood- 
shed. In such a period we can not judge of any attribute of free 
government, or of the capability of any part of the people to main- 
tain free government. That period passed away, and with it the 
corrupting influence of the Freedman's Bureau. The political ad- 
venturers who exercised power without right or merit, and enjoyed 
wealth without labor, " sought safety in flight." Thus the malign 
influences were removed that had sowed distrust and discord, and 
excited hostility between the races. If General Garfield will only 
consider the colored man's improved condition since this change 
took place, his greater freedom in the exercise of his political 
rights, his conceded security in the enjoyment of his civil rights, 
and his more harmonious relations with the white race, he will 
surely review and reconsider the opinion which he expressed, that, 
in many parts of the South, the negro has been deprived of all the 
benefits intended to be conferred upon and secured to him by the 

Mr. Blaine thinks the negro is controlled, whatever way he may 
vote. He attributes his conduct to some influence stronger than 
that of his own conviction and will. What does he mean by " the 


persuasion of the Freedman's Bureau," at the period when the vote 
was all one way ? To whom does he refer as " the men who con- 
trolled the negro vote at the outset, in the interest of the Republi- 
can party " ? They were the same " adventurers who exercised 
power without right or merit, and amassed wealth without labor." 
They were the coadjutors of the Freedman's Bureau. The com- 
bined influence was pernicious. The officers and agents of the 
Bureau were its emissaries. They were found everywhere. They 
obtained and abused the confidence of the colored people. They 
provoked and organized the strife of the races. 

The control of the vote by these influences could not last. It 
soon came to an end. The colored people could not be kept in ig- 
norance of their real and true interests. They learned that the in- 
crease of public indebtedness and the profligate expenditure of 
public money would place burdens upon their own shoulders, and 
impair the value of the products of their labor. Influenced by these 
and other proper considerations, they united in large numbers with 
the Democrats. The result was, as I have said, the restoration to 
the Southern States of the right of local self-government, and a 
purer and better administration of public affairs. Mr. Blaine is not 
willing to concede to the colored voter a change of party relations 
upon intelligent conviction. He attributes such a change to fraud 
and violence ; for he says that, by " fraud, intimidation, violence, 
and murder, free suffrage on the part of the negro in the South is 
fatally impaired." For a statement so broad Mr. Blaine must rely 
upon evidence " of the baser sort," much of which has long since 
been rejected. 

How is it that Mr. Blaine may claim much credit for his early and 
continued support of negro suffrage, and yet deny to the negro the 
capacity of free and uncontrolled action ? It may not be questioned 
that, in the days of his political vassalage, the negro was under the 
control of what Mr. Blaine describes as the " persuasion of the 
Freedman's Bureau," and of the men who controlled his vote " in 
the interest of the Republican party " ; but his capacity of intelli- 
gent election is not to be questioned merely because he may become 
a Democrat. Mr. Blaine makes the argument (or rather the claim) 
that for emancipation, for citizenship, for civil rights, and for politi- 
cal privileges, the negro is indebted to the Republican party, and 
that therefore his allegiance is to that party ; and that so long as 
he is allowed the freedom of choice he can and will vDt^ with no 
other party. He declares it the " recklessness of assumption," " the 


very bravado of argument," to claim that, upon his own choice, he 
would vote with the Democrats. That is the strongest statement 
ever made against negro suffrage. The vote is nearly one million. 
The claim is that it is not free — is never to be free, but belongs 
to a party ; that, because of past obligations, it can not change. 
In its membership and in its aggregate it can not change. It can 
not consider questions of principle or questions of policy. It may 
not listen to the demands of patriotism, nor the appeals of self- 
interest, as opposed to the requirements of the party. Its obliga- 
tion to party can never be discharged. Whether questions relate to 
the honor of the country or the welfare of the people, it can exer- 
cise no free and independent judgment. It would be a matter of 
serious concern, could a party claim a vassalage so numerous and so 
abject. But that claim is being repudiated by the colored vote 
itself. In the demonstrations preceding the elections, and at the 
polls, its independent action in many of the States has stamped the 
claim of ownership as false and arrogant. 

But Mr. Blaine asks the question, " \VTiy should the negro have 
been disposed to vote with the Democratic party ? " Is that ques- 
tion asked by one who sincerely believes in the capacity of the 
negro to vote intelligently upon questions affecting the public wel- 
fare, and that his action will be governed by an enlightened judg- 
ment and a patriotic purpose ? Then I answer that the same con- 
siderations should govern the negro that ought to govern any other 
voter. He should vote upon his convictions of right and duty. If 
Democratic policy is more likely to promote the public goad, then 
it should be supported by the white and colored voter alike. He 
who tells me how the white man should vote tells me as well how 
the colored man should vote. When once in the box the ballot has 
no color. Its only quality depends upon the fitness of the candidate 
it may help to elect, and upon the views he may carry into legisla- 
tion, or the measures he may adopt in the administrative service. 
A full answer to the question would require a statement of the 
reasons why any citizen should give that party his support. Such 
reasons might be found in its devotion to constitutional obligations ; 
in its atlherence to the "supremacy of the civil over the military"; 
in its maintenance of the separation and mutual independence of 
church and state, "for the sake alike of civil and religious free- 
dom"; in its hostility to a "corrupt centralism," which threatens 
the destruction of the right of local self-government ; and in its 
devotion to economy in public expenditures. 


It may be said by many, both white and black, We do not adopt 
all the dogmas of the Democratic party, nor approve its entire rec- 
ord, but we will declare our condemnation of the centralism, the 
extravagance, and the corruption of its powerful opponent. Our 
record shall not be in approval of the frightful crimes that charac- 
terized a late Administration. The taxes were not reduced, but the 
revenues were impaired. Remorseless severity was the rule of col- 
lection ; official favoritism the standard of accountability. We will 
not help to establish such precedents. Is this not language which 
the citizen ought to use ? Please tell me why it is not as becoming 
and proper for the colored as for the white voter ? What obligation 
does he owe to party that takes from him the right to use this, the 
language of patriotism ? 

Is the question repeated ? Then I say that the colored voter, if 
intelligent to understand his duty, and honest to discharge it, could 
not remain with the party that corrupted and destroyed the State 
governments of the South. I will be pardoned for appropriating 
and reproducing what Mr. Lamar has so well said on this subject : 
*' Reference has been made to the great change which the election 
returns show in the negro vote throughout the South. The phe- 
nomenon is easily explained. Let any intelligent Northern man 
review the history of the State governments of the South for the 
last ten years under Republican rule — their gross and shameless 
dishonesty, their exorbitant taxation, their reckless expenditure, 
their oppression of all native interests, the social agonies through 
which nhey have forced all that was good and pure to pass as 
through a fiery furnace ; the character of the men — many of them 
— they have placed in power ; and then say if such a state of things 
in a Northern or Western State would not have been a sure and 
natural precursor of a Republican defeat, so absolute and complete 
that the very name of the party would have become in that State 
a name of scorn and reproach. Then why should not that result 
have occurred in the South ? Ai'e we to assume that the black race 
have neither instinct nor reason — have no sense, no intelligence, no 
conscience, no independence ; that in every Southern State the 
thralldom of the negro vote to party leaders, even when abandoned 
by them, is so unquestioning and abject that no amount of misrule 
can cut him loose from them or teach him the advantage of a more 
natural and wholesome political alliance ? To reason thus is simply 
to say that the negro is unfit for suffrage, and to surrender the 
argument to those who hold that he ought to be disfranchised." 


The influences that governed many of the colored people in aid- 
ing the whites to place the Southern States under Democratic con- 
trol were truly stated by one of themselves, the most prominent 
man of the race. For the first time after reconstruction, the Demo- 
crats carried Mississippi in 1875. Because the colored race had the 
majority in that State, the fairness of the election was disputed. 
In Compress and in the Northern press, with great bitterness and 
positiveness, the result was altribute<l to fraud and violence. There 
was then, as now, no difficulty in obtaining the testimony of willing 
witnesses to establish violence. 

The Rev. H. W. Revels, a colored man, had recently, before 
that time, been a United States Senator from that State. He was 
an observer of public events. On the 7th of November, 1875, a 
few days after the election, and before the result was fully known, 
he addressed the following letter to President Grant : 

My dear Sib : In view of the results of the recent election in our State, 
I have determined to write you a letter canva-ssing the situation, and gi\dng 
my views thereon. I will preiaise by sayiog that I am no politician. Though 
having been honored by a seat in the United States Senate, I never have 
sought j)olitical preferment, nor do I ask it now, but am engaged in my call- 
ing — a minister — and, feeling an earnest desire for the welfare of all the people, 
irrespective of race or color, I have deemed it advisable to submit to you 
for consideration a few thoughts in regard to the political situation in this 

Since reconstruction, the masses of my people have been, as it were, en- 
slaved in mind by unprincipled adventurers, who, caring nothing for the 
country, were willing to stoop to anything, no matter how infamous, to secure 
power to themselves and perpetuate it. My people are naturally Republicans, 
but, as they grow older in freedom, so do they grow in wisdom. A great 
portion of them have learned that they were being used as mere tools, and, 
as in the lute elections, not being able to correct the existing evil among 
themselves, they determined by casting their ballots against these unprinci- 
pled adventurers to overthrow them. 

My peo[)le have been told by these schemers, when men were placed upon 
the ticket who were notoriously corrupt and dishonest, that they must vote 
for them ; that the salvation of the party depended upon it; that the man 
who scratched the ticket was not a Republican. This is only one of the many 
means these malignant demagogues have devised to perpetuate the intellectual 
bondage of my people. To defeat this policy at the late election men irre- 
spective of race or party affiliations united and voted together against men 
known to be incompetent and dishonest. 

The bitterness and hate created by the late civil strife have, in my opinion, 
been obliterated in this State, except perhaps in some localities, and would 


have been long since entirely effaced were it not for some unprincipled men 
who would keep alive the bitterness of the past and inculcate hatred between 
the races in order that they may aggrandize themselves by office and the 
emoluments to control my people, the effect of which is to degrade them. I 
give you my opinion that, had our State administration adhered to Republi- 
can principles, and stood by the platform upon which I was elected, the State 
would have been on the high-road to prosperity. If the State administration 
had advanced only to patriotic measures, appointed only honest men to office, 
and sought to restore confidence between the races, bloodshed would have 
been unknown. Peace would have prevailed ; Federal interference would 
have been unth ought of, and harmony, friendship, and mutual confidence 
would have taken the place of the bayonet. 

In conclusion, let me say to you, and to the Republican party of the 
North, that I deem it my duty, in behalf of my people, that I present these 
facts in order that they and the white people, their former owners, should 
not suffer misrepresentation, which certain demagogues seem desirous to 


H. W. Revels. 

A stronger document can not be produced in favor of colored 
suffrage. It is a plain statement of the cruel bondage that had 
been maintained by " corrupt rings " over .both races, and of the 
means used to " inculcate " hatred between them. Having a ma- 
jority in the State, the colored people were able to continue the 
strife of the races, and to perpetuate their own political power. 
But intelligently and patriotically they united with the whites to 
overthrow the power of the " unprincipled adventurers," to drive 
them from the State, and to restore good government. The help 
came like food and water to a starving and famished people. And 
for it honorable and grateful return was made, at the next session 
of the Legislature, in the enactment of laws providing extraordi- 
nary security for the rights of labor in Mississippi. 

Why confuse and cheapen a discussion like the present by 
thrusting into it questions of personal consistency? Why turn 
aside to consider one another's motives ? Who of the readers of 
the " Review " cares for either ? But Mr. BTaine thinks it useful 
to his argument to suggest that in my eyes the complexion of the 
colored man depends upon his voting the Democratic ticket. Devo- 
tion to truth compels me to say that my confidence in his judgment 
as an independent voter is strengthened by the circumstance that I 
do find him voting that ticket. Really, I could not respect him 
very much if Mr. Blaine's opinion of him were correct, that he is a 
political fixture, immovable under influences that control other and 


patriotic minds. Prior to tlie adoption of the Fifteenth Amend- 
ment, but as late as September, 1805, Governor Morton, in a care- 
fully prepared speech, used the following language : " Look at their 
condition. As I said before, only one in five hundred that can read 
— many of them, until within the last few months, never off the 
plantation — most of them never out of the county in which they 
live and were born, except as they were driven by the slave-drivers. 
Can you conceive that a body of men, white or black, who have 
been in this conditiojiy a?id their ancestors before them, are qualified 
to be imm^ediately lifted from their presoit state into the full exer- 
cise of 2^olitical jwicer, not only to govern themselves and their 
neighbors, but to take part in the Government of the United States? 
Can they be regarded as intelligent or independent voters? The 
mere statement of the fact furnishes the answer to the question.'^'* 

Because of a subsequent zeal, so extreme as to be questionable, 
for the adoption of the Fifteenth Amendment, would Mr. Blaine 
describe him as " a conspicuous convert," and attribute his zeal to a 
desire to add to the voting strength of his party ? Since the adop- 
tion of the amendment was declared, it has received that true sup- 
port from the Democratic party Avhich each citizen owes to every 
provision of the Constitution. 

In the month of February, 18T0, I visited the city of New Or- 
leans for the first time. Quite unexpectedly I was called upon to 
speak at a Democratic meeting. AVithout note or preparation 
whatever, I stepped upon the platform, decided upon one thing 
only, and that was to say just what was becoming on my part to 
speak, and proper for the men of Louisiana to hear. For no pur- 
pose of self-vindication, but as expressing my present views, I will 
quote from what I then said : 

" It is a question for you to consider very carefully what atti- 
tude you men of the South shall occupy toward the colored popu- 
lation. There is a deliberate purpose on the part of adventurers 
from the North — a class of men who are described as carpet-bag- 
gers — to appropriate the entire colored vote of the South to their 
cause. And what is their cause? It is not your cause ; it is not 
the colored man's cause ; it is the cause of plunder. And the 
question presents itself in this form : Are you men of the South 
willing that these adventurers shall appropriate that large vote — in 
some of the Southern States a majority of the entire vote ? . . . . 
New relations have come to exist between you and the colored peo- 
ple of the South. How will you place yourselves in regard to 


these new relations ? They have not been of your seeking, and 
they may, perhaps, not have been sought by the negro, but he is a 
voter in Louisiana, as he will be in Indiana, if the Fifteenth Amend- 
ment is declared adopted, and it is not worth your while, nor is it 
worth my while, to go back on the fixed fact. These new relations 
are upon you. How are you to conduct yourselves toward the col- 
ored people ? Is it possible that the stranger can now come in and 
make these ancient servants of yours his servants and your enemy ? 
.... In my judgment, the colored people will be satisfied if you 
assure them that you will give them just laws, fairly administered. 
Do this, and then the outside adventurer can not turn their votes 
against you. Let the colored man understand that the legislation 
of your State is not being carried on to make a few men rich at the 
expense of the great body of the people. . . . Appeal to the col- 
ored man to stand by you in your fight for honesty, for justice, for 
integrity, and for equal laws, and that appeal will reach his heart as 
readily as it reaches the heart of the great body of the white peo- 

Why does Mr. Blaine depart from the subject of his argument, 
to arraign many of the States for their policy toward the colored 
people ? He recites in much detail the provisions of statutes which 
he attributes to the intention of reenslaving the race ; and he 
charges the responsibility upon the Democratic party. A better 
understanding of the responsibility that attaches to either party, in 
that regard, requires a more exact statement of the steps by which 
the States passed from the condition of war into practical relations 
with the Union. The first period was that of the provisional gov- 
ernments. The policy of establishing such governments had its 
origin in Mr. Lincoln's amnesty proclamation of December 8, 1863. 
Under its provisions the authority of the United States was de- 
clared restored over portions of the State of Louisiana, and *'a 
loyal State government was reinaugurated." 

Mr. Blaine says, " It was reserved for Louisiana to outdo both 
South Carolina and Mississippi in this horrible legislation," and he 
specifies that, the contract once made, the negro laborer was not 
allowed to leave his place of employment during the year, except 
upon prescribed conditions ; deductions might be made from wages 
for injuries done to animals and implements committed to his care ; 
and for bad or negligent work ; and impudence, swearing, and in- 
decent language, and quarreling and fighting with one another, 
were prohibited and punished. What think you of this charge 


against the States, that it is an abridgment of the freedom of the 
negro that he is forbidden to indulge in impudence, swearing, and 
indecent language in the presence of the family where he is em- 
ployed ? 

Why were such regulations required or permitted ? At that 
time the agricultural laborers of that State were exclusively col- 
ored. They constituted a majority of the entire population. At 
once, and without preparation, they were transferred from a condi- 
tion of servitude to one of freedom. No one could predict what 
would follow. It was soon apparent that their tendency was to 
abandon the country, and crowd the cities, and follow the camps. 
Men of both sections contemplated the possible results with anxiety. 
Was freedom to mean exemption from labor only ? Congregating 
in large numbers, and unemployed, were they to sink into vice, and 
to degenerate into vagrancy ? The benevolent and the humane 
were anxious about the result, for the sake of the colored people 
themselves. Men in responsible and public positions had also to 
consider the possible effect upon the material welfare of the coun- 
try. Was an entire section to remain without labor ? Were the 
lands to lie without cultivation ? Should we become the purchasers 
from other lands, and not the producers of the great staples of the 
South ? Mr. Lincoln seems to have considered all these questions ; 
for in his amnesty proclamation, to which I have referred, there is 
this remarkable paragraph : " I do further proclaim, declare, and 
make known that any provision which may be adopted by such 
State government in relation to the freed people of such State, 
which shall recognize and declare their permanent freedom, provide 
for their education, and which may yet be consistent, as a tempo- 
rary arrangement, with their present condition, as a laboring, land- 
less, and homeless class, will not be objected to by the national 

A State Constitution was soon thereafter adopted. It estab- 
lished the permanent freedom and provided for the education of the 
*' freed people." To carry out Mr. Lincoln's suggestion in the par- 
agraph which I have quoted, it only remained to adopt such regula- 
tions as were necessary and proper for the " freed people," as a 
" laboring, landless, and homeless class." 

General Banks was then in command in Louisiana. He gave 
construction to the paragraph in the orders he issued and in the 
regulations he adopted. In his General Order No. 23, February 3, 
1864, he based his regulations of labor upon the assumption " that 


labor is a public duty, and idleness and vagrancy a crime," and that 
this law of labor should be enforced. He fixed the prices to be paid 
at from three to eight dollars per month. He provided that wages 
should be deducted in case of the sickness of the laborer, and that, 
if the laborer feigned sickness, food also might be withheld. It 
was also provided that " indolence, insolence, disobedience of or- 
ders, and crime should be suppressed by forfeiture of pay, and such 
punishments as are provided for similar offenses by army regula- 
tions." Under that order the colored laborer of Louisiana was 
placed under military rule ; and, if insolent or disobedient to his 
employer, would suffer loss of pay, and other punishment such as 
would be inflicted upon a soldier guilty of disobeying the orders of 
his commanding officer. By other regulations, "no hand could 
leave the place without written license," and " each hand will be 
responsible for the loss or careless damage of tools, stock, or any 
other property." 

Mr. Blaine denounces these provisions as horrible, and as a " cause- 
less and cruel oppression of a whole race." They are the product 
of a provisional government, which rested for its authority upon 
Mr. Lincoln's proclamation. And neither in their origin, their spirit, 
nor their purpose can they truthfully be laid to the charge of the 
Democrats. The fact that they may have passed into the subse- 
quent legislation of the State can not change any responsibility 
that did attach to their origin or purpose. And if any one were to 
repeat that the enactment of such regulations of labor looks to its 
reenslavement, I would find the complete vindication from such a 
charge of the provisional government and its administration in the 
fact that the adoption of the State Constitution was concurrent, 
and that it provided for the immediate and unconditional emanci- 
pation of the slaves. In the year 1865 provisional governments 
were established over most of the other Southern States. The pro- 
clamations issued by Mr. Johnson rested upon and were very similar 
in their provisions to the proclamation issued by Mr. Lincoln. The 
latter proposed "to reinaugurate loyal State governments within 
and for their respective States," while the former proposed to re- 
store the States to their " constitutional relations to the Federal 
Government." At that time Mr. Johnson was in harmony with the 
party that had elected him. It can not be truthfully said that for 
his conduct in 1865, or for the action of the governments which he 
established, the Democratic party is in any way responsible. In 
many respects the Democrats opposed the policy of 1865. 


In 1867 the Republican party became bo powerful in Congress 
as to be able to defy the Presidential veto. It overthrew the pro- 
visional State governments, and substituted its iron policy of recon- 
struction. That policy was embodied in the act of March, 1867, and 
the two acts supplementary thereto. The rebel States were declared 
to be without legal governments. They were divided into military 
districts, and placed under the absolute authority of military com- 
manders. The commanders were authorized to take steps for the 
restoration of civil authority and the establishment of State govern- 
ments. The work was supervised by the military. The negroes 
were admitted to a full participation, while many of the whites were 
excluded. The military and the negroes controlled the government. 
The effect was, to excite strife and create bad blood between the 
races. This was the beginning of the period of reconstruction. The 
evil influences already mentioned promoted and intensified the an- 
tagonism of the races. In such a strife the colored people became 
an easy prey to the unscrupulous adventurers who assumed to be 
their special friends. Bloodshed was frequent, and bad government 
was universal. Under such control the States continued for periods 
varying from six to nine years. I need not describe the condition 
of the people during that time. They endured all the evils and 
misfortunes that attend discordant society and bad government. 
It was the period of evil influences. Its legislation and its admin- 
istrative service have left no record that can gratify the patriot. 
Neither race was as secure of any right of person or property as 
before it came, or after it passed away. It is barren of all fruits 
of good government. It is a plain over which the lava has flowed. 

Then came this, the third period in the progress of restoration. 
It is yet short ; in some of the States but two years, and in others 
but three, four, and five years. But the work of restoration is com- 
plete. ITie right of local self-government is now enjoyed in all the 
States. The beneficent results of this period have been secured 
through the cooperation of the colored voters. What advantages 
have come to them, as a class, from the change from military rule 
to local self-government ! In the periods of provisional government 
and reconstruction Mr. Blaine has described the colored laborer as 
almost a slave. How is it now ? He is better protected in his 
wages by the laws of many Southern States than is the laborer in 
any Northern State. By the act of April 14, 1876, the laborer in 
Mississippi is given a lien for his wages upon the crop he helps to 
raise, and for his portion of the crop when it is upon shares. The 


lien is prior to all others, and exists without record, and without 
any written contract. Upon judgments for wages no property is 
exempt from execution. These provisions were adopted at the first 
session after the Democrats obtained the control in Mississippi. By 
the act of February 24, 1873, the laborer in Georgia is given a lien 
for his wages upon the property of the employer, first above any 
other lien except for taxes, judgments, and decrees, and a special 
lien upon the products of his labor, above every other lien, except 
for taxes. In North Carolina the farm laborer is given a first lien 
upon the crop he helps to produce. In 1865, under the provisional 
government. South Carolina established and so regulated the domes- 
tic relations among the colored people as to promote their moralitv, 
virtue, and personal welfare. In the regulations of labor it was 
provided that " wages due to servants shall be preferred to all other 
debts or demands except funeral expenses, in case of the insuffi- 
ciency of the master's property to pay all debts and demands 
against him." 

I know of no !N'orthern State that gives to the laborer such ex- 
traordinary protection and security for his wages. It has been 
sought, demanded, prayed for by the employees of great corpora- 
tions, but it has been denied in many Northern States. The en- 
gineer, whose life is every hour at hazard, and the miner whose 
labor produces the wealth which others enjoy, have sought security 
for their wages, but have been denied. It was a free-will and 
cheerful offering by the people of the South, to place the wages of 
the negro next in payment to taxes and funeral expenses. Am I 
asked again why the colored man should vote with the Democrats ? 
I answer, that it is a surer guarantee of his individual welfare, and 
that the political association is better than with the men who seek 
his confidence that they may use him for selfish ends. 

Doubtless many acts of violence and wrong were done to colored 
people during the years immediately succeeding the close of the 
war. The contest had been long and bitter. The institution of 
slavery was associated in the minds of the people as one of the 
causes of the war. As a result of the war, the white man, impov- 
erished in the struggle, was obliged to recognize the colored man, 
who had been his hereditary bondsman, as his political equal. Who 
could expect that tranquillity would at once settle down upon the 
scenes of such violent disturbance ? The wildest optimist could not 
hope for that. All history teaches that the spirit of violence exists 
in more or less activity after the cessation of civil war. To look 


for anything else would be as vain as to expect the ocean, vexed to 
its profoundest depths, to subside into instant tranquillity when the 
roar of the tempest is hushed. The difficulties necessarily incident 
to the condition of the country were aggravated by the unnatural 
policy which sought to place the emancipated race, in political rule, 
over the white race. Harmony could not at once follow. Indeed, 
it is hardly possible, so long as the colored men, in large masses, 
assume a position of distrust and hostility toward the w^hite voters. 
The antagonism of race will disappear from our political contests 
when the colored people shall declare their freedom from the parti- 
san ownership that is asserted over them, throw off the influence of 
the selfish adventurers who claim to control them, and assert their 
rights as free and independent voters. 

Now, that thirteen years have passed since the close of the war, 
and the two races, during much of that period, have been living to- 
gether as citizens equal before the law, while every year their politi- 
cal relations are becoming more harmonious, can the statesman find 
no better argument to show that the colored man holds his political 
rights by precarious tenure, than that founded upon social disturb- 
ances ? 

If I may accuse Mr. Blaine, in any instance, of employing an argu- 
ment not quite up to the highest plane of statesmanship, and of lead- 
ing this discussion into the arena of mere party politics, yet I must 
thank him for the closing paragraph of his last article. For patri- 
otic sentiment, beauty of language, and grandeur of eloquence, it 
merits a high place among the noblest productions of the English 

Thomas A. Hendricks. 


" TVell, but will you tell me, after all, what is a public school ? " 
The propounder of this was an American gentleman, of high culture 
himself and deeply interested in the subject of education. He was 
not satisfied with the state of things in his own country, and was 
persuaded that the time had come when an effort must be made to 
meet the demand for some other stepping-stone for their boys than 
the common school or the private boarding-school, between the 
home of the American gentry and the universities. He had read 
such documents as he could lay hands on as to the English public- 
schools system, and had convinced himself that there might be 
something in it which would be of use to him in his search. At 
any rate, he would run over and study it for himself. Accordingly, 
ha\'ingj obtained such letters as he thousjht mig^ht be of use to him, 
he saUed for England, and, after consultation with and under the 
advice of some of those to whom they were addressed, made a tour of 
inspection which comprised most of the English public schools. He 
had been much pleased with his adventures : had seen a number of 
fine buildings, some of them of rare historical interest ; had got much 
information as to the methods of study and discipline ; had looked on 
at any number of cricket matches and other games, and been much 
impressed by the skill and activity of the boys, and the beauty of 
their raiment ; had talked with masters, and prefects, and other 
boys, big and little, and had come back full of all manner of facts 
and figures. But in one thing he had failed, and in a matter, too, 
which he not unreasonably held to lie at the very root of his in- 
quiry ; and so, after his six weeks' wanderings, returned to his ori- 
giual mentor in London, before starting on his return voyage, with 
the above question, " What is a public school ? " Many replies, 
indeed, he had heard, but none which had at all satisfied him. Thus 
he had been told by a sixth-form boy in the Eton eleven, that the 


only public schools in England were those which played against 
each other in a yearly match at Lord's cricket-ground ; according 
to the captain of Westminster, a royal foundation was the true 
test ; other authorities of equal weight had limited public schools 
to those entitled to contend for the Elcho shield and Spencer cup at 
the Wimbledon gatherings of the National Rifle Association. A 
Liberal under-master at Rugby had defined public schools as those 
which possessed a foundation controlled by persons in no way in- 
terested in the profits of the institution ; while at Shrewsbury he 
had been assured that a charter of some Plantagenet or Tudor sov- 
ereign was of the essence of a true public school. From his own 
observations and inquiries, however, he remained quite dissatisfied 
with all and each of these definitions, and came back with steady 
persistence to his starting-point, "^Vhat is a public school — in your 
country ? " 

The question is one of considerable difficulty. To some extent, 
however, the answer has been furnished by the Royal Commission 
appointed in 18G1 to inquire into the nature and application of the 
endowments and revenues, and into the administration and manage- 
ment of certain specified colleges and schools commonly known as the 
Public Schools Commission. Nine are named in the Queen's letter 
of appointment, viz., Eton, Winchester, Westminster, the Charter- 
house, St. Paul's, Merchant Taylors', Harrow, Rugby, and Shrews- 
bury. The reasons probably which suggested this selection were, 
that the nine named foundations had in the course of centuries 
emerged from the mass of endowed grammar-schools, and had made 
for themselves a position which justified their being placed in a dis- 
tinct category, and classed as " public schools." It will be seen as 
we proceed that all these nine have certain features in common, dis- 
tinguishing them from the ordinary grammar-schools which exist in 
almost every country town in England. Many of these latter are 
now waking up to the requirements of the new time and following 
the example of their more illustrious sisters. The most notable ex- 
amples of this revival are such schools as those at Sherborne, Gig- 
gleswick, and Tunbridge Wells, which, while remodeling themselves 
on the lines laid down by the Public Schools Commissioners, are to 
some extent providing a training more adapted to the means and 
requirements of our middle classes in the nineteenth century than 
can be found at any of the nine public schools. But twenty years 
ago the movement which has since made such astonishing progress 
was scarcely felt in quiet country places like these, and the old en- 
voL. cxxviii. — NO. 269. 23 


dowments were allowed to run to waste in a fashion which is now 
scarcely credible. 

The same impulse which has put new life into the endowed 
grammar-schools throughout England has worked even more re- 
markably in another direction. The Victorian age bids fair to rival 
the Elizabethan in the number and importance of the new schools 
which it has founded and will hand on to the coming generation. 
Marlborough, Haileybury, Uppingham, Rossall, Clifton, Chelten- 
ham, Radlej^, Malvern, and Wellington College, are nine schools 
which have taken their place in the first rank, and, while following 
reverently the best traditions of the older foundations, are in some 
respects setting them an example of what the public-school system 
may become at its best, and how it may be adapted to meet new 
conditions of national life. 

In order, then, to get clear ideas on the general question, we must 
keep these three classes of school in mind — the nine old foundations 
recognized in the first instance by the Royal Commission of 1861 ; 
the old foundations which have remained local grammar-schools 
until within the last few years, but are now enlarging their bounds, 
conforming more or less to the public-school system, and becoming 
national institutions ; and, lastly, the modern foundations which 
started from the first as public schools, professing to adapt them- 
selves to the new circumstances and requirements of modern English 
life. The public schools of England fall under one or other of these 
categories. No one who understands the subject would question 
the claim of the modern foundations named above to the title of 
public schools, in the same sense in which it is applied to the nine. 
Of the schools in the second category only a certain number can be 
classed as public, as distinguished from local grammar-schools, and 
perhaps the best rough method for ascertaining which these are is 
furnished by the conferences of head masters, now held yearly, at 
the end of the summer term. Where the governing bodies of 
grammar-schools desire to conform to the public-school system, it 
may be assumed that they will be represented by their head masters 
on these occasions. Tried by this test there are in all some forty 
foundations, which may fairly be called the public schools of Eng- 
land, and which would have to be studied by any American educa- 
tional reformer, desirous of satisfying himself what, if any, portion 
of the system can be carried across the Atlantic to any useful pur- 

We may now turn to the historic side of the question, dealing 


first, as is due to their importance, with the nine schools of our first 
category. The oldest, and in some respects most famous of these, 
is Winchester School, or, as it was named by its founder, William 
of Wykehara, the College of St. Mary of Winchester, founded in 
1382. Its constitution still retains much of the impress left on it 
by the great Bishop of the greatest Plantagenet King, five centuries 
ago. Toward the end of the fourteenth century Oxford was already 
the center of English education, but from the want of grammar- 
schools boys went up by hundreds untaught in the simplest rudi- 
ments of learning, and when there lived in private hostels or 
lodging-housef, in a vaH throng, under no discipline, and exposed 
to many hardships and temptations. In view of this state of things, 
William of Wykeham founded his grammar-school at Winchester 
and his college at Oxford, binding the two together, so that the 
school might send up properly trained scholars to the university, 
where they would be received at New College, in a suitable aca- 
demical home, which should in its turn furnish governors and mas- 
ters for the school. As might have been expected, the school itself 
took a collegiate shape, and under the original statutes consisted 
of a warden, ten fellows, seventy scholars, a head and second mas- 
ter, three chaplains, three clerks, and sixteen choristers. All these 
were amply provided for by the original endowments, but in addi- 
tion the statutes provided for the admission of ten " filii nobil- 
ium ac valentium personarum dicti collegii specialium amicorum," 
who were to be educated in college at their own charges. How 
gently England deals with old institutions may be seen by compar- 
ing the Winchester of to-day with that of William of Wykeham. 
As time went on the college property increased enormously in 
value, and long periods occurred in which a very different estimate 
from that of the Bishop came to be put on the higher education. 
And so, while the school never altogether failed in its work, great 
abuses crept in. College and school were kept as a close borough ; 
the fellowships, pleasant sinecures of some five hundred pounds a 
year, and a good house, were monopolized by founders' kin and old 
Wykehamists of quiet tastes and popular manners ; the splendid 
scholarships, which carried their fortunate possessors to New Col- 
lege, franked them through the university, and often provided for 
them for life, were given without competition of any kind. All 
this is changed. The old connection between school and college 
has been preserved, but both have been thrown open, with the 
result that England does not contain two more satisfactory places 


of education. The governing body has been thoroughly reformed, 
but it still consists of a warden and eleven fellows, of whom four 
only, instead of ten, are stipendiary and seven honorary. The sti- 
pendiary fellows are elected by the Avhole governing body, and must 
be persons distinguished in literature or science, or who have done 
long and eminent service to the school as masters. The honorary 
fellows, except the Warden of New College, who is one ex officio^ 
have no payment from the college funds, and must be persons quali- 
fied by position or attainments to be of use to the school. The col- 
legers, or foundation scholars (who get a first-class education almost 
free) have increased to one hundred, selected by open competition, 
the cleverest boys being attracted from all parts of tbe country by 
the value of these prizes. The ten " filii valentium personarum " 
have increased, under the name of commoners, to upward of two 
hundred, who are boarded in the masters' houses. 

The salary of the warden is now fixed at £1,700 a year and a 
house, and that of each of the four paid fellows at £700 (instead 
of ten at the lower rate named above). The head master gets from 
all sources about £3,000 a year, the second master £1,400, and the 
under-masters according to the length and value of their service, 
from £250 to £800, besides the profits of boarders in the case of 
those who have houses. The college endowments consist of real 
estate situate mainly in Hants and Wilts, producing an average 
income of upward of £17,000, and of stock producing another 
£2,000 or thereabouts in dividends. There are also thirteen church 
livings in the patronage of the warden and fellows ranging be- 
tween £100 and £600 a year. 

We must now turn to the monitorial system, which is common 
in principle to all public schools, though differing largely in detail. 
Its origin may be traced to William of Wykeham's statutes, by 
which it is provided that " in each of the chambers three scholars 
of good character, and more advanced than their fellows in age, 
discretion, and knowledge, shall be chosen to superintend their 
chamber-fellows in their studies, to oversee them diligently, and to 
certify and inform the warden and head master from time to time 
respecting their behavior, conversation, and progress." There are 
six chambers in college, and therefore eighteen prefects, to which 
number twelve have since been added for commoners — of these, 
eight have power only in chambers, while the remainder are full 
prefects {plend potestate prcefecti), with power everywhere. Of 
these, again, five " officers " have charge of the hall, schools, library, 


and chapel, of whom the prefect of hall is the chief, being " the gov- 
ernor of the school among the boys," and their organ of communi- 
cation with the head master. The five officers are chosen by the 
warden, in consultation with the head master, and all are invested 
by him with their authority in a traditional form of words, of which 
the operative ones are " pra^ficio te sociis concameralibus, praeficio te 
aula?." llie system of fagging is connected with this government 
by prefects. They and they only have power to fag, and the only 
boys exempted from fagging are those in the fifth form. It is un- 
necessary for our purpose to consider the somewhat elaborate details 
of the traditional system, which at one time pressed heavily on the 
liberty and studies of the lower boys. At present fagging is re- 
duced to running on errands, attending at breakfast and tea, and 
fielding for a certain time at cricket. The prefects' powers include 
that ' of " tunding," or punishing corporally. We must defer any 
remark on the general system for the present, but may just note 
here that, in the milder form which it has taken of late years, fag- 
ging is undoubtedly popular among the boys at Winchester who are 
subject to it, and, strange as it may seem to transatlantic readers, 
wouH not be abolished to-morrow were it put to the vote of the 
forms below the fifth. 

Winchester School, though under the snadow of the founder- 
Bishop's own cathedral, has a fine chapel of its own, in which there 
are daily morning prayers, conducted by a master, consisting of a 
portion of the Liturgy with chanting. The hours of work in school 
are on two days of the week between six and seven and on the 
other days between four and five hours, besides which the boys in 
the higher forms have composition and examination work to do out 
of school-hours. A hard-working sixth-form boy will generally 
study seven hours a day, and perhaps from nine to ten before ex- 
aminations, and will give probably on an average three more hours a 
day to cricket and other games. The boys are allowed to go where 
they please during play-hours, except in the city, which is out of 

Our notice of the remaining schools must be even more meager 
than the skeleton sketch we have given of the oldest of them. 
Next in date comes the royal foundation of Eton, or " The College 
of the Blessed Mary of Eton, near Windsor.", It wafe founded by 
Henry VI., a. d. 1446, upon the model of Winchester, with a col- 
legiate establishment of a provost, ten fellows (reduced to seven in 
the reign of Edward IV.), seventy scholars, and ten chaplains (now 


reduced to two, who are called " conducts "), and a head and lower 
master, ten lay clerks, and twelve choristers. The provost and fel- 
lows are the governing body, who appoint the head master, and 
claim the right to name the provost also, though this has always in 
practice been done by the Crown. Around this center the great 
school, numbering now a thousand boys, has gathered, the college, 
however, still retaining its own separate organization and traditions. 
Besides the splendid buildings and playing-fields at Eton, the col- 
lege holds real property of the yearly value of upward of £20,000, 
and forty livings ranging from £100 to £1,200 of yearly value. 
The income of the provost is about £2,000 a year, and of the paid 
fellows £850. The ofiices of vice-provost, bursar, precentor, sa- 
crist, and librarian have until recently been also held by follows. 
King's College, Cambridge, stands in much the same relation to 
Eton as New College, Oxford, to Winchester, being fed by the 
King's scholars year by year, and having had until recently the 
practical monopoly of the masterships at the school. King's has 
been now thrown open to all Eton boys, oppidans as well as schol- 
ars. Besides the King's scholarships, there are sixteen other schol- 
arships at the universities yearly competed for at Eton. TheP sys- 
tem of private tuition prevails there more than at any other of the 
public schools, and the school- work is consequently lighter. There 
is daily chapel with choral service on saints' days, at which the con- 
ducts, one of whom acts also as curator to the parish of Eton, offi- 
ciate. The monitorial system scarcely exists at Eton, except m col- 
lege, the sixth-form boys being, however, expected to preserve 
order, and having the right to fag, which is shared also by the fifth 
form. The river competes with the playing-fields at Eton, where 
rowing is at least as popular as cricket, and the captain of the boats 
even a greater personage than the captain of the eleven. The boys 
are free to go where they please in play-hours, including the town 
of Windsor ; but are expected to " shirk," or, in other words, to 
run away, when they meet a master outside the playing-fields. The 
prestige of Eton, arising from its royal foundation and proximity to 
Windsor Castle, and its convenient distance from London, has made 
it the fashionable school for many generations, and has attracted to 
it large numbers of boys, the sons of rich parents, who look more 
to pleasant surroundings than high intellectual culture, and desire 
to provide them at an early age for their sons. 

The school next in date stands out in sharp contrast to Winches- 
ter and Eton. It is St. Paul's School, founded by Dean Colet, the 


friend of Erasmus, a. p. 1512, for the teaching of a hundred and 
fifty-three boys " of all nations and countries." The number is 
that of the miraculous draught of fishes, which is supposed to have 
been the Dean's guide in fixing it. There is no distinction among 
the boys, as at Winchester and Eton, between scholars and com- 
moners or oppidans, every boy having his education free, subject 
only to the payment at his admission of 4c/., " once and for ever, 
for writing of his name." Dean Colet was before all things a citi- 
zen (son of a famous Lord Mayor) and a radical reformer, and his 
notions of school management stand out in sharp contrast to those 
of Bishop and King. He will have no machinery of warden, fel- 
lows, and the rest, or allied college at the university, and has little 
confidence in clerical management. So he constituted the Mercers' 
Guild, of which he was an hereditary member, the governing body 
of his school, to whom he conveyed certain estates in Buckingham- 
shire for its maintenance. By his statute the masters, wardens, 
and assistants of the Mercers' Company arc to choose annually two 
honest and substantial men of their fellowship as surveyors of the 
school, who shall take the charge and management for the year. 
The two surveyors, however, in practice only look after the ac- 
counts and pay the masters' salaries, referring all questions of man- 
agement to the court of assistants of the company. The Dean's 
plan in its working contrasts in some respects favorably, in others 
unfavorably, with those of Bishop and King : favorably as regards 
the management of the estates. These in Colet's time produced an 
income of less than £200, which, under the management of the 
Mercers' Company, has now risen to £10,000. And while the war- 
den, provost, and fellows have absorbed the lion's share of the en- 
dowments at Eton and Winchester, the Mercers' Company have 
never raised the salaries fixed for the surveyors in 1602 at £4 a 
year apiece, while the expenses of the court of assistants in con- 
nection with the school have been kept under £250 a year. On the 
other hand, the nomination of the scholars has become a matter of 
patronage, each member of the court of assistants taking them in 
rotation. They have also jealously guarded their powers, so that 
the head master has less control than in any other school, not being 
allowed even the selection and appointment of his staff. This under 
Colet's ordinances consisted of a head master, a sur-master, and a 
chaplain, but has been enlarged to seven masters, with adequate 
salaries, the head master's being £900, with the rents of two houses 
at Stepney and a residence adjoining the school. There is no chapel 


attached to St. Paul's School, the original one having been burned 
in the great fire and never rebuilt ; but Latin prayers, two of which 
were written by Erasmus, are read by the captain of the school 
twice a day. The whole of the head form (the eighth) act as moni- 
tors ; but, as the school is practically a day-school, their powers and 
duties are limited. The school buildings still stand at the east end 
of St. Paul's Churchyard, fronting on one of the noisiest thorough- 
fares in the city. The suggestion of the Public Schools Commis- 
sioners for their removal to some more retired part of the metropo- 
lis, where a small playground or at least fives courts and a gymna- 
sium might be provided, is still under the consideration of the 
Mercers' Company. The exhibitions to the universities belonging 
to the school are (in the opinion of the late head master) too numer- 
ous and too easily obtained. No English school has a higher scho- 
lastic tradition than St. Paul's. William Lely, the grammarian and 
first teacher of Greek in London, was the first high master, and 
Camden and Leland among the earliest scholars, who have been 
followed by an illustrious succession from Milton to the present 
Bishop of Manchester. But of late there has been (the Commis- 
sioners remark) a growing tendency in the coui't of assistants to 
narrow the sphere of its operations, and convert it from a public 
school into a mere charitable foundation, useful to individuals, but 
of little public importance. 

Shrewsbury School, which follows next in order of seniority, 
claims a royal foundation, but is in reality the true child of the 
town's folk. The dissolution of the monasteries destroyed also the 
seminaries attached to many of them, to the great injury of popular 
education. This was specially the case in Shropshire, so in 1551 
the bailiffs, burgesses, and inhabitants of Shrewsbury and the neigh- 
borhood petitioned Edward VI. for a grant of some portion of the 
estates of the dissolved collegiate churches for the purpose of found- 
ing a free school. The King consented, and granted to the peti- 
tioners the appropriated tithes of several livings and a charter, but 
died before the school was organized. It was in abeyance during 
Mary's reign, but opened in the fourth year of Elizabeth, 1562, by 
Thomas Aston, who soon drew to it not only the sons of citizens of 
Shrewsbury, but those of the gentry of Shropshire and the neigh- 
boring counties. Sir Philip Sidney, Fulke Greville, and Robert 
Devereux, afterward Earl of Essex, were among his pupils. Dis- 
cussions which at once arose as to the government of the school 
between the corporation of Shrewsbury and Mr. Aston, represent- 


ing the Crown, were settled in 1577, temporarily, when the school 
ordinances were passed by which the Bishop of Litchfield was 
named visitor, the appointment of head master was vested in the 
master and fellows of St. John's, and the practical control and man- 
agement in the town bailiffs and head master. There has been a 
long struggle over the foundation, the town contending for a prac- 
tical monopoly of its emoluments and benefits, which, if successful, 
would have degraded Shrewsbury from the rank of a public school. 
It has ended by the adoption of the scheme of the Public Schools 
Commissioners, and the governing body now consists of thirteen 
members — three named by the corporation of Shrewsbury, three by 
the Crown, one by each of the colleges of Christ Church, Oxford, 
and St. John's and Magdalen, Cambridge, the remaining four being 
elected by the governing body itself. The right of gratuitous edu- 
cation is limited to forty free scholars. The thirty-four scholar- 
ships and exhibitions to the universities have been thrown open. 
The monitorial system is carried out by twelve praepostors, who, 
upon entering oflice, engage in writing on the part of the school 
with the head master to do and prevent certain things. They read 
the lessons in chapel, call over the names, and represent the school 
before the head master. They have the power of setting imposi- 
tions within certain limits, but none of caning. Four fags are al- 
lotted to the praepostors' room, who serve by weekly rotation, laying 
breakfast and tea and running messages ; but there is no individual 
fagging, or fagging at games. The revenues of the school amount 
to £3,100 a year, arising almost entirely from tithe-rent charges. 
The head master's emoluments, including profits of his boarding- 
house, are about £2,000 a year. The school attends Sunday-morn- 
ing service at the church of St. Mary's, but otherwise the services 
are held in the school-chapel. 

We have now reached the great group of Elizabethan schools, 
to which indeed Shrewsbury may also be said to belong, as it was 
not opened until the Queen had been three years on the throne. 
The two metropolitan schools of Westminster and Merchant Taylors' 
were in fact founded in 1560, two years before the opening of 
Shrewsbury. Westminster as a royal foundation must take prece- 
dence. It is a grammar-school attached by the Queen to the colle- 
giate church of St. Peter, commonly called Westminster Abbey, 
and founded for the free education of forty scholars in Latin, Greek, 
and Hebrew. The Queen, with characteristic thriftiness, provided 
no endowment for her school, leaving the costs of maintenance as 


a charge on the general revenues of the dean and chapter, which 
indeed were, then as now, fully competent to sustain the burden. 
Other boys have always been taught with the foundation scholars, 
the number being fixed by statute at eighty ; but this limit has not 
been observed. The scholars are elected by a system of competi- 
tion called the challenge, of the nature of the old academical dis- 
putations. The candidates, generally about thirty in number com- 
peting for ten vacancies, come up by twos before the head master, 
beginning from the lowest. The junior proceeds to challenge the 
other to translate some portion of Greek epigram or Ovid's Meta- 
morphoses prepared for the occasion. If he can correct any fault 
he takes the other boy's placo, who becomes challenger, and attacks 
in his turn. Their " helps," senior boys who have prepared them, 
stand by and counsel their " men," and the head master moderates, 
deciding the point in issue when there is any doubt as to the cor- 
rectness of an answer. The boy who remains successful now chal- 
lenges the candidate next in seniority, and so the struggle goes on 
for some six or eight weeks, the boys who are highest at its close 
getting the vacant Queen's scholarships. These carry them either 
to Christ Church, Oxford, or Trinity, Cambridge, the heads of which 
colleges are on the governing body of the school, with the dean and 
chapter, and six laymen, four named by the Crown and two by 
the governing body. The monitorial system is in force in college. 
The four head boys, as captain and monitors, are formally intrusted 
with the maintenance of discipline by the head master before the 
whole school. The system of fagging was onerous until quite re- 
cently, so much so that its severity was noticed by the Commission- 
ers in their report in 1864. It has since been lightened by the 
appointment of servants to do part of the work (such as calling in 
the early mornings, providing hot water, and making up fires. 
There is no school chapel, the boys attending the Abbey services. 
The hall is the room in which Henry IV. is lying sick in Shake- 
speare's play, and the dormitories and schools form the southern 
side of Dean's Yard. The playground is in Vincent Square, half a 
mile from the school, and the neighborhood is not a healthy one in 
any sense for boys to frequent. Moreover, the headquarters of 
rowing, for which the school was justly celebrated, have migrated 
of late years to quieter and safer waters at Putney, six miles up 
the river. Having regard to which facts, and the constant closing 
in of the city, efforts have been made to remove the school out of 
town. These, however, have failed through the opposition of old 


Westminsters, fearful of breaking the school traditions and the 
connection with the abbey, and of abandoning the privilege which 
the upper boys possess of entrance to the galleries of the Houses of 
Parliament to hear the debates. Up to the last generation West- 
minster was the school of several of the great political families. 
Two premiers, Lords Aberdeen and Russell, were educated there, 
and many other statesmen ; and, though this is no longer the case, 
the old tradition gives way so slowly that it will probably take at 
least another generation to transplant the school to a healthier and 
more eligible site. 

Merchant Taylors', the other metropolitan school founded in 
1560, owes its origin to Sir Thomas White, a member of the Court 
of Assistants of the company, and founder of St. John's College, 
Oxford. It was probably his promise to connect the school with 
his college which induced the Company to undertake the task, and 
to declare by the statutes, taken in great part from Dean Colet, 
that their school should " have continuance by God's grace for ever." 
Sir Thomas White redeemed his promise by endowing the school 
with thirty-seven fellowships at St. John's College. The fellow- 
ships have been thrown open by an ordinance of the Privy Council 
founded on an act of Parliament, but the school still retains twenty- 
one scholarships at St. John's, of £100 each, and tenable for seven 
years. The school is a day-school of 250 boys, the vacancies being 
filled by the nominees of the Merchant Taylors' Company. The 
boys now pay £10 a year for their education, all the surplus cost, 
amounting to about £2,000 a year, being borne by the company, 
in whose hands the management and government of the school ex- 
clusively rest. The only trace of the monitorial system is that 
some of the elder boys assist in the school- work. There is no fag- 
ging, the boys never being together out of school-hours. Merchant 
Taylors', it will thus be seen, is a grand foundation, of the highest 
value as a place of education to the sons of professional men and 
clerks living in London ; but as a pure day-school, without the 
monitorial system, and belonging to (or at any rate claimed as be- 
longing to) a city company, would scarcely have been classed as a 
public school but for the fact that it is so included in the Public 
Schools Commission of 1861. Its inclusion tends to show how 
broad the authoritative interpretation of the term is with the Privy 
Council and the legal advisers of the Crown. 

Rugby, or the free school of Lawrence Sheriff, follows next in 
order, having been founded in 1567 by Lawrence Sheriff, grocer, 


and citizen of London. His " intent " (as the document expressing 
his wishes is called) declares that his lands in Rugby and Browns- 
over, and his " third of a pasture-ground in Gray's Inn Fields, called 
Conduit Close," shall be applied to maintain a free grammar school 
for the children of Rugby and Brownsover, and the places adjoin- 
ing, and four poor almsmen of the same parishes. These estates, 
after providing a fair schoolhouse and residences for the master 
and almsmen, at first produced a rental of only £24 135. Ad. In 
due time, however. Conduit Close became a part of central London, 
and Rugby School the owner of eight acres of houses in and about 
the present Lamb's Conduit Street. The income of the whole trust 
property amounts now to about £6,000, of which £255 is expended 
on t^e maintenance of the twelve almsmen. There is no visitor, 
and the foundation consists simply of a board of trustees, a school- 
master, assistant masters, a chaplain, and the boys. The trustees 
have from the first been country gentlemen of Warwickshire and 
the neighboring counties, who have used the school for many gen- 
erations for theu' own children. They were until lately self -elect- 
ing, and the same names, those of the Warwickshire landed gentry, 
appear again and again ever since the creation of the board in 
1614. The trustees possess legally almost unlimited powers over 
the management of the school, but in practice have left very large 
discretion to the head master, who in internal administration, ap- 
pointing assistant masters, regulating studies, and the like, has 
practically done what he thought best, always, however, with the 
knowledge that the power of review and correction rests with those 
to whom he is responsible for the discipline and instruction of the 
school. This responsibility has, however, been shared by the assist- 
ant masters for the last fifty years, since Arnold on his appoint- 
ment introduced the practice of holding a "levy of masters," as 
it is called, monthly, for consultation on school business. The prac- 
tice has been attributed to his love of equality and well-known 
opinions on government ; but, whatever the origin, the custom has 
worked well, and is not likely to be disturbed. The tutorial sys- 
tem of Eton was introduced at Rugby toward the end of the last 
century by Dr. James and Dr. Ingles, Eton men who were successive- 
ly head masters. As modified by Arnold it still prevails. Rugby has 
no special connection with either university, but provides five exhi- 
bitions annually, ranging from fifty to eighty pounds, which are open 
to free competition. At Rugby the school close is thirteen acres 
in extent, and the games played in it are regulated by an assembly 


called " big side levy," consisting of all boys in the upper school, 
another democratic arrangement not in use in any other of the nine 
schools. The monitorial system exists in a carefully guarded form. 
The sixth form, or praepostors, exercise it over the whole school, 
for the purpose of enforcing rules and preserving order. They 
have the power of fagging all boys below the fifth form. The du- 
ties of the fags are limited to dusting the sixth-form studies, mak- 
mg toast at breakfast and tea, running messages, and attendance 
at games. Attendance at football, hare and hounds, and brook- 
leaping is compulsory, except for those who are excused by a medi- 
cal certificate ; in fact, as the Commissioners report, fagging at 
games has been reduced almost " to a system of making physical 
education compulsory in all cases in which there is no reason to 
apprehend evil effects upon the health from compulsion." The 
chapel is only used on Sundays, Good Friday, Ash Wednesday, 
Ascension and All-Saints', and on Founders' Day, October 19th. On 
other days there are short morning prayers in the big school and 
evening prayers in the boarding-houses. There are sixty-one foun- 
dationers, or boys living in or within ten miles of Rugby, who get 
a free education, except in tutorial work, for which they pay like 
the other boys. The head master's emoluments, including profits 
on boarders in the schoolhouse, amount to between £3,000 and 
£4,000 a year ; those of the thirteen classical assistant masters 
range from £340 to £1,020 ; those of the three mathematical from 
£580 to £1,410, while the two modern language masters get £1,284 
and £286 respectively. Of all the nine schools, it is the one which 
has made the greatest advance toward grafting a new curriculum 
of modem studies upon the old classical system, though it has 
stopped short in this respect of the best schools of the Victorian 

Harrow school was founded in 1571, four years later than Rug- 
^7> by John Lyon, a yeoman of the parish. He was owner of cer- 
tain small estates in and about Harrow and Barnet, and of others 
at Paddington and Kilburn. All these he devoted to public pur- 
poses, but unfortunately gave the former for the perpetual educa- 
tion of the children and youth of the parish, and the latter for the 
maintenance and repair of the highways from Harrow and Edgware 
to London. The present yearly revenue of the school estates is 
barely over £1,000, while that of the highway trust is nearly £4,000. 
But, though the poorest in endowments, Harrow, from its nearness 
to London, and consequent attractions for the classes who spend a 


large portion of their year in the metropolis either in attendance in 
Parliament, or for pleasure, has become the rival of Eton as a fash- 
ionable school. The governors are a corporation under charter, and 
were six in number until increased to twelve, on the recommenda- 
tion of the Public Schools Commissioners. They are accustomed to 
interfere even less than the Rugby trustees with the administration 
of the head master, who himself appoints all assistant masters, gives 
leave to open boarding-houses, and is responsible for the financial 
arrangements of the school. 

The custom, however, of masters' levies exists at Harrow as at 
Rugby, having been introduced by Dr. Vaughan, the late head 
master and a distinguished pupil of Arnold. Harrow, like Rugby, 
has no special connection with either university, but, unlike Rugby, 
has few exhibitions open to yearly competition. Two " John Lyon " 
scholarships are given yearly, of the value of £30, and tenable for 
four years, and there is also a scholarship of £100 a year tenable 
for three years, becoming vacant every fourth year. On the other 
hand, in prizes of medals and books for the best examinations in 
special subjects, the school is unusually rich. The monitorial and 
fagging systems are similar to those of Rugby, the chief difference 
being that the monitors are only ten in number ; each monitor may 
exempt four fags from football if he is playing himself, while the 
head of the school may exempt any number, and that cricket fag- 
ging is more completely organized, the whole number of fags being 
taken in rotation, so that each boy's turn comes only once a week. 
After three years boys are exempt from fagging, though they may 
not have reached the fifth form. Private tuition on the Eton sys- 
tem is universal. The chapel services are confined to Sundays and 
a few great festivals. The choir is composed of boys who meet for 
practice twice a week. The masters in orders preach by turns on 
Sunday, a custom found to be of great value both to themselves 
and to the boys. The foundations are boys resident in Harrow, 
and are exempt from all charges except fifteen guineas for private 
tuition and £2 lO^. for school charges. The head master and sev- 
eral of the senior assistant masters have large boarding-houses, while 
others are allowed to keep smaller boarding-houses in which higher 
rates are paid, amounting on an average to an extra cost of £50 
a year. These are intended for boys whose health is such as to 
render them unfit for the rougher discipline and more bracing at- 
mosphere of large houses. The emoluments of the head master, 
after making deductions for exceptional expenses falling on him in 


respect of repairs of the buildings and otherwise, the result of the 
want of endowments, considerably exceed £4,000 a year, those of 
the assistant masters range between £500 and £1,500. 

Last on the list of the nine schools comes the Charterhouse 
(the Whitefriars of Thackeray's novels). It may be fairly classed 
with the Elizabethan schools, though actually founded in 1609, after 
the accession of James I. In that year a substantial yeoman, 
Thomas Sutton by name, purchased from Lord Suffolk the lately 
dissolved Charterhouse, by Smithfield, and obtained letters patent 
empowering him to found a hospital and school on the old site. 
In the patent sixteen persons are named and incorporated as gov- 
ernors, which number, consisting always of persons eminent in 
church and state, remained unaltered until increased by four under 
the advice of the Public Schools Commissioners. The governors 
meet twice a year to view the state of the hospital, make election 
of poor men and poor scholars, and do other business. The old 
Charterhouse, though situated in one of the most crowded and un- 
suitable quarters of London, had this great advantage over the 
other metropolitan schools, that it had a playground of ^yq acres 
adjoining the buildings. The whole premises, including school 
buildings and hospital, residences for the masters of each, cloisters 
and playground, were surrounded by a high wall pierced by only 
one gateway. In this inclosure the boys lived, side by side, with 
the " poor, aged, maimed, needy, and impotent people," the poor 
brothers of the hospital, and worshiping in the same chapel, a 
pathetic juxtaposition brought out with exquisite delicacy and hu- 
mor in Thackeray's sketch of the last days of Colonel Newcome. 
The property of the corporation, apart from the Smithfield site, 
produced an income of about £23,000, of which about £8,000 was 
spent on the school. The boys were of three classes, sixty founda- 
tioners, named by the governors in rotation, and entitled to free 
maintenance and education, clothes, and a gown and trencher-cap, 
with an exhibition of £80 a year at either university upon passing 
a satisfactory examination at the age of eighteen ; boarders, who 
lived in the masters' houses, and day boys paying £18 I85. for their 
education. The monitorial and fagging systems were much the 
same as at Westminster, except that all boys in and above the fourth 
form were exempt. But the old school in Smithfield is a thing of 
the past. Since the visit of the Public Schools Commissioners in 
1862, the governors, acting in the spirit of their recommendations, 
have transplanted the school to one of the most beautiful parts of 


England, in the neighborhood of Guildford. The great value of 
the site of the old school has enabled them to proceed in the most 
liberal manner, and the new school buildings, boarding-houses, and 
arrangements of all kinds are equal, if not superior, to those of any- 
other school in the kingdom. This experiment, the first of the kind, 
has been eminently successful, and its results have by this time 
reconciled most old Carthusians to the partial break in the school 
traditions and the severance of their school from the hospital and 
the poor brethren. 

The above sketch, though necessarily meager, will, it is hoped, 
help to put our readers on the right road toward an understanding 
of the English public-school system, which undoubtedly furnishes 
one more example of the curious anomalies which are found in every 
department of the many-sided life of the country, and also of the 
strong practical sagacity which underlies the national character, 
and enables the nation, with all its strange wastefulness and indif- 
ference to logical methods, to achieve its ends and get what it 
needs, practically if not scientifically. We have only to look at 
the names of the founders to see how the need for such institutions 
as these schools must have been felt in all parts of the nation before 
and at the time of the revival of learning. The Crown, great 
churchmen, municipalities, commercial guilds, city tradesmen, yeo- 
men of the counties, are all there ; in fact, the only class conspicu- 
ous by its absence is that of the great nobles and landed gentry — 
the very class which has in the long run made most use of the 
schools. The main object of the founders seems in all cases to 
have been the promotion of the best learning then obtainable ; the 
next, the benefit of certain specified localities and of the poor. The 
two objects proved in the end incompatible, and one or other had 
to give way ; time would show which it was to be. It soon ap- 
peared that there was no demand for the best learning among the 
poor, and so scores of Tudor grammar-schools gave up offering it 
at all, and fell gradually into decay and paralysis, from which they 
are only now awakening. On the other hand, there was and con- 
tinued to be a fair demand for "the best learning" among the 
landed gentry and the professional and mercantile classes, and this 
demand the nine schools which remained comparatively faithful to 
their highest trust were there to meet with more or less success. 
And so (as the Commissioners declare in their report) "public- 
school education as it exists in England, and in England only, has 
grown up chiefly within their walls, and has been propagated from 


them ; and, though now surrounded by younger institutions of a 
like character, and of great and increasing importance, they are 
still in common estimation its acknowledged types, as they have 
for several generations been its principal centers." 

We are quite conscious, however, that, after having gone with 
us so far, the American inquirer in whose company we started will 
still be entitled to repeat his question in a slightly modified form, 
and to say : " You have only told me that certain specified institu- 
tions, differing widely in their constitutions and methods of teach- 
ing and discipline, are public schools in your sense, and that they 
are so because they give a public-school education. Now, then, 
what is this public-school education which they give ? " The same 
question confronted the Public Schools Commissioners whom we have 
so often cited, and is adverted to by them in the introduction to 
their report. They, speaking to an English audience, were able to 
a certain extent to give it the go-by, and, in their report, to treat 
public-school education as " a phrase which is popular and sufii- 
ciently intelligible," without attempting to define its precise mean- 
ing. But this, at any rate, is not so in America, and their example 
can not be followed in these pages. What gives the subject such 
interest as it possesses for Americans is the almost entire absence, 
even in the Eastern States, of educational constitutions answering 
the purposes w^hich the nine schools, and their modern rivals, serve 
in the United Kingdom. However democratic a nation may be in 
spirit and character, and in its political and social constitution and 
organization, the time must come when it will breed a gentry, 
leisure class, aristocracy, call it by what name you will, as certainly 
(as Mr. Emerson has said) as it will breed women. The more vig- 
orous and prosperous the nation, the sooner -will the class arise ; and 
the more healthy the class, the more certain will it be to insist on 
the highest culture attainable for its boys and girls. 

But the highest culture can not be brought to every man's door. 
However good your common-school system may be, you can not 
have a thoroughly satisfactory school, so far as instruction is con- 
cerned, except in great centers of population ; and, in those great 
centers, though the school- work and teaching may be as good as 
you require, the conditions of life are not the best for boys (leaving 
girls out of the question) from twelve to eighteen, the years be- 
tween the home schoolroom and the university. Besides, a large 
portion of the class in question live too far from the great centers 
to make use of the best common schools, without sending their 
VOL. cxxviii. — NO. 269. 24 


boys for long periods from under their own roofs. Some system of 
boarding-schools, therefore, must be established ; and the problem 
is how it can be best done, what conditions of government, disci- 
pline, and instruction, will suit the national character and habits 
best, and turn out the kind of men whom the commonwealth needs 

That the English public-school system, with all its faults and 
shortcomings, has done this work for the old country in a fairly 
satisfactory manner is an unquestioned fact, and might perhaps be 
safely assumed here. We prefer, however, to cite the highest testi- 
mony on the point. The Public Schools Commissioners in their 
report, after a very searching criticism on many parts of the sys- 
tem, confess the obligations which England owes to the schools, 
" which, were their defects far greater than they are, would entitle 
them to be treated with the utmost tenderness and respect " ; and, 
after speaking of the service they have rendered in the maintenance 
of classical literature as the staple of English education, " a service 
which far outweighs the error of having clung to these studies too 
exclusively," continues : " A second and greater service still is the 
creation of a system of government and discipline for boys, the ex- 
cellence of which has been universally recognized, and which is ad- 
mitted to have been most important in its influence on national 
character and social life. It is not easy to estimate the degree in 
which the English people are indebted to these schools for the 
qualities on which they pique themselves most — for their capacity 
to govern others and control themselves, their aptitude for combin- 
ing freedom with order, their public spirit, their vigor and manli- 
ness of character, their strong but not slavish respect for public 
opinion, their love of healthy sport and exercise. These schools 
have been the chief nurseries of our statesmen ; in them, and in 
schools modeled after them, men of all the various classes that 
make up English society, destined for every profession and career, 
have been brought up on the footing of social equality, and have 
contracted the most enduring friendships and some of the ruling 
habits of their lives ; and they have had perhaps the largest share 
in molding the character of an English gentleman. The system, 
like other systems, has had its blots and imperfections ; there have 
been times when it was at once too lax and too severe — severe in its* 
punishments, but lax in superintendence and prevention ; it has per- 
mitted if not encouraged some roughness, tyranny, and license, but 
these defects have not seriously marred its wholesome operation ; 


and it appears to have gradually purged itself of them in a remark- 
able degree. Its growth, no doubt, is due to those very qualities in 
our national character which it has itself contributed to form, but 
justice bids us add that it is due likewise to the wise munificence 
which founded the institutions under whose shelter it has been en- 
abled to take root, and to the good sense, temper, and ability of the 
men by whom, for successive generations, they have been governed." 
In the case of nations of the same race, and so nearly identical 
in character and habits as the people of the United States and the 
English, it may reasonably be assumed that a system which has 
borne such fruits in the one is at least worth the careful examina- 
tion of the other. AVe propose, therefore, in a future number to 
recur to the subject, and consider what is of the essence and what 
are the mere accidents of the English public-school system, in the 
assurance that, whether it may or may not approve itself to the 
American people, an intelligent understanding and appreciation of 
it will greatly help them in determining how to deal best with their 
own boys at the age when the mind is " wax to receive and marble 
to retain," and the characters of most men take the bent and impress 
which they never lose in after-life. 

Thomas Hughes. 


" No one who watches events which are now happening 
can doubt that, if Socialism should continue to advance with 
80 much rapidity as it has lately shown in Germany and the 
United States, the day is not far distant when the Socialists 
will be able to control the legislations of these countries." 

Such were the warning words recently uttered at the English 
University of Cambridge by the eminent economist and member of 
Parliament, Mr. Henry Fawcett. There is little doubt that*most 
Americans who have chanced to notice this prophecy have summa- 
rily dismissed it with the consoling reflection that there is no dan- 
ger, because there is no truth in Mr. Fawcett's fears. Yet the mere 
partial fulfillment of these forebodings would mark a change more 
momentous than any that is recorded in the history of our race. 
To examine in detail, however, the origin and progress of modern 
Socialism, or the certain consequences which the triumph of its 
principles would involve, is no purpose of the present paper. But, 
in order to fulfill the object in view, it will be necessary to cast a 
cursory glance at the growth and doctrines of the new creed, before 
approaching a subject which is but a branch of the parent tree that 
has fastened its roots in the countries of the Old World. 

In studying the operations of surrounding society the conclu- 
sions of the modern mind are ordinarily determined by certain 
antecedent conditions. Results are predicted by certain rules or 
laws, fixed and formulated by the light of repeated and recorded 
experience. While science has become a history, history has be- 
come a science. Given to the modern historian certain premises, 
his conclusions are at hand, and his inferences are ordinarily derived 
with the same certainty with which the chemist forecasts the com- 


bination of atoms. So it became possible for Edmund Burke to 
predict the effects of the French Revolution, and thus the powerful 
mind of Pitt foresaw the inevitable fall of Napoleon. Men so 
short-sighted as Jefferson may have seen in the outburst of the 
French Revolution the da\vn of an era of universal happiness. 
But, by the calmer and more observing exponents of history, the 
salient and inevitable results of the people's reign could be predicted 
with the same precision with which Leverrier foretold the existence 
of a new planet. And why ? For the simple reason that in vari- 
ous guises "all this had been before." From time immemorial 
modern society had formed two great camps. The men who had all 
to fijain had striven with the men who had all to lose. The one side 
formed the defensive, the other the offensive party. The one be- 
came the party of conservatism, the other the party of reaction. No 
sooner had the democrats reached the coveted goal of wealth than, 
like Juno, a goddess in pursuit but a cloud in possession, the prin- 
ciples of the pursuer vanished with the attainment of his end. 
The ardent democrat of yesterday became the stanch conservative 
of to-day. The democracy of one era became the conservatism of 
the succeeding one. The dream of one age was the science of the 
next. Again and again the mass of the people had watched this 
evolution with alarm and apprehension. Repeatedly society was 
declared not sufficiently elastic to meet the strain. Each fresh gen- 
eration had asked itself the question. How far can radicalism ad- 
vance without bursting the bonds of society ? And each time the 
question was solved by repeating it. 

But the cause of strife — the summiwi honum — had been wealth 
alone. And there could be no radical displacement of the funda- 
mental fabric of society, so long as all parties stood on the one 
ground of the supreme value of property. The aim and the object 
of all classes were identical. They all bowed down to Mammon. 

Suddenly, within the memory of men still living, there sprang into 
existence, in full panoply, a counter party — a counter revolution, 
nominally endowed with public and universal aims, and destined to 
redeem the great mass of human sufferers by organized and orderly 
confederation. Hitherto our civilization had been one of property. 
It was now proposed to make it one of competency. Universal co- 
operation was to take the place of universal competition. The capi- 1 
talist and the poor man alike were to vanish from the face of soci- 
ety. State effort was to supplant individual effort, and the central 
Government to be controlled and governed by universal and united 


cooperation. It was for the first time proposed to Swedenbor- 
gianize society by investing every man with a dynamic value in 
the mechanism of state. Never before had this doctrine been ad- 
vanced. Never had it been known to cast before it even the faintest 
shadow. Neither the republican society of Plato, of Fourier, or of 
Babeuf ; nor the hierarchical and aristocratic of Saint Simon ; nor 
the theocratic of the Essen es ; nor the despotic of the Peruvians or 
Jesuits ; nor the polygamous of the the Mormons ; "nor the material- 
istic of Robert Owen ; nor the terrorism of Robespierre, had ever 
contemplated universal and equal distribution of property, coupled 
with a general and coercive recruiting of its members. 

In Germany, the classic land of modern Socialism, the new creed 
was first proclaimed. Hardly twenty-five years have elapsed since 
it first found expression in the person of its great tribune, Ferdinand 
Lassalle, a leader at once endowed with the fanaticism of Robes- 
pierre, the philosophic mind of Kant, and the personal magnetism 
of O'Connell. His numerous apostles, stronger than the great 
prophet himself in their denunciation of the " cruel, brazen law of 
wages," soon built up the party now known as the party of German 
Socialism. If we are to believe the words of the great GeiTaan 
Chancellor, this man, despite his professions, detested the burgher 
because he was not sufficiently imbued with admiration for his lead- 
er, while he despised the workman because he bargained too closely 
for submission ; and, " in revenge," says Prince Bismarck, " he wor- 
shiped Lassalle." But however this may be, Lassalle, " thinker and 
man of war," as his epitaph reads, will remain the first high priest of 
the new social creed, and the prophet of a social system which has 
made all Europe quake and brought the most powerful minister of 
modern times to declare that " in all the great German Empire his 
dog alone remains unshaken in his allegiance." It is indeed due 
to such leaders as Lassalle and Karl Marx, and the great learning 
which they brought to the cause, that the intellectual classes of 
Germany were permeated with the new principles of Socialism, and 
it is to them that it owes its growth and success in the fatherland. 
How different from France, where the remnants of feudalism had 
provoked the anarchic attack of the great Revolution, and finally 
spent its untutored forces in the after-birth of the July Revolution 
and the Commune ! For neither the Commune nor communism 
could endure so long as the first Napoleon went do^Ti to posterity 
with the Code in his hand, and so long as discontent was confined 
to the lowest orders. Indeed, most traces of Socialism have now 


vanished from French soil, and the fact would seem partly due to the 
slow and silent operation of the Code Napoleon, which imposes upon 
all testators an equal distribution of property, and partly to the dis- 
tribution of a great debt among the masses of the people. 

If, on the other hand, we turn to the eastern neighbor of the 
German confederation, we find quite another picture. It is not from 
the working classes that the ranks of nihilism are recruited in the 
great empire of the Czars. The Russian moujik is content with the 
poverty and obscurity that fall to his lot. It is only when roused 
by agitators like Serge Netchaieff, an ex-professor of Moscow Uni- 
versity, that he is moved from the lethargy of his passive condition. 
In Russia, Socialism, as the recent and alarming students' riots at- 
test, is confined almost wholly to the intellectual classes which 
struggle in sympathy with the movement in Germany. Within the 
last eight years the Russian nihilists have quadrupled their num- 
bers, and the existence of Socialism may well be considered ominous 
and dangerous to an autocracy where the intellectual classes wield 
the powers of state, and number in their own ranks secret mem- 
bers of the new persuasion. Indeed, the wave of liberalism and 
nihilism which has lately passed over the dominions of the Czar 
is not viewed without concern by the German Chancellor himself, 
whose powerful and forecasting intellect has even crossed the sea 
to watch and promote the progress now making by his enemies in 
the greatest republic of modern times. 

It is the present purpose to consider the advance of Social- 
ism in America, and especially the importation to this country of 
German Socialism with its measures and its men. We have reason 
to believe that few Americans perceive the danger that is daily 
growing in their presence under the shrewd and fostering protec- 
tion of Prince Bismarck. Not many months ago, when Europe 
was panic-stricken by four successive attempts in one year upon 
the lives of three monarchs. Prince Bismarck, by the famous bill 
passed in the Reichstag, laid low the Socialist propaganda in Ger- 
many. By the repressive measures of this bill two million Germans 
were deprived of their constitutional rights. Of these two mil- 
lions, the German Government, supremely conscious of its own 
best interests, is now making attempts, direct and indirect, to 
drive a large jDortion to this country. It is here proposed to show 
how far this element of German Socialism has already fixed its 
fangs in the most susceptible portion of our people, and threat- 
ens, with a larger increase of representatives and loquacious agita- 


tors, to diffuse its poison into all classes sufficiently indigent and 
sufficiently ignorant to join the great caravan of the discontented. 

It seems indeed curious that Socialism, a movement so menacing 
to the peace of the military despotisms of the Russian and German 
Empires, should have reached our shores, and found foothold in this 
land of freedom and of plenty. It was long believed that neither 
discord nor discontent could ever cross the threshold of the young 
republic. She was the home of the oppressed, the asylum of the 
outcast. In a land flowing with milk and honey, where fortune and 
nature had vied with each other in their gifts, men thought to see 
and to foresee the realization of humanity's fondest hopes. En- 
dowed with wealth, with all the fundamental principles of political 
liberty, a boundless and exhaustless territory, it seemed as if Amer- 
ica were destined to dispel the night of ages, and to regenerate 
mankind. With earnest solicitude the wisest heads of Europe 
watched the progress of the great experiment. But the outbreak 
of the war of secession, foreseen and predicted by De Tocqueville, 
brought all calculation to a standstill, and modified and convulsed 
the whole condition of our social fabric. It introduced caste. It 
made of the republic a plutocracy. It altered and remolded our 
commercial and economic systems. It fostered protection. It cre- 
ated speculation, extravagance, an immense debt, and poverty. It 
was through the operation of these changes and innovations that the 
prevalence of Socialistic principles became possible in the United 
States ; and while we have been discussing the possibility of a Mon- 
gol invasion, and the incapacity of the negro for responsible gov- 
ernment, we have failed to notice the new enemy who may at no 
distant day plunge capital and labor into a conflict calculated to 
test the strength of a weak government even more severely than 
the late civil war. 

To the ninety-nine out of every hundred of our people, Socialism 
in this country means nothing more than an empty name applied 
to strange and visionary radicals. To such it will be surprising if 
not alarming to learn that there are, in the leading and most popu- 
lous States of the Union, thousands upon thousands of enrolled mem- 
bers of the regular Socialist organization, and that in numbers they 
largely exceed the organization which first elicited attention in Ger- 
many. We do not include the " Butlerites " and " Kearneyites " 
and other children of discontent, ever ready to give ear to their 
tempters, and to follow in the wake of the first successful dema- 
gogue or party that may lead the crusade against capital. Such 


demagogues are already at hand, and dare to-day to raise their 
voice in the supreme councils of the nation. Not many months 
have passed since a United States Senator declared in debate at 
"Washington that the combat of the future lay between the men 
who own the public debt and those who are to pay it, " if it is 
to be paid at ally Nor does this estimate include the unnum- 
bered thousands who have signified their allegiance to the cause 
of Socialism, without affixing their signatures as enrolled mem- 
bers of the brotherhood. The large number of self-supporting So- 
cialist newspapers alone attests the existence of an immense sym- 
pathizing (though for the present silent) mass of men. And the 
success and extent of the movement are the more appreciable after a 
careful comparison of the relative increase of the Socialist vote, 
recently polled in the large cities of the Union, with that cast in 
Berlin during late years. By this it appears that the result at the 
polls of our large political centers, such as New York and Chicago, 
shows a more rapid growth of the Socialist vote than that cast at Ber- 
lin, when the increase was considered sufficiently alarming to call for 
restrictive measures. And the wonder grows greater when upon 
investigation it is ascertained that the moving spirits of our Social- 
ist party are German agitators — many of them recently imported 
from the fatherland. These men lend to the cause all their knowl- 
edge, pertinacity, and experience. We speak of such men as F. 
Leib and Paul Grottkau, convicted and condemned, some time 
since, by the tribunals of Berlin, and Gustav Lyser and Henry 
Eude — both escaped from the prisons of Frankfort, the latter having 
since taken a prominent part in the Paris Commune. Indeed, the 
sympathy and the union of the American party with the German 
movement may be seen from the fact that, previous to the last 
election in Germany, a considerable sum was raised in the United 
States to aid the Socialists in defraying election expenses in Prus- 
sia. There these funds were instrumental in swelling the majority 
against a friendly Government. 

Mr. Seward once declared that of all the elements which entered 
into our national composition the German was the element which he 
most feared. The discontented and revolutionary spirit which 
characterizes the German mind, coupled with the little learning 
which every citizen of the fatherland brings with him, and the 
clannishness of his race, seemed to Mr. Seward a danger menacing 
to the existing order of things. It is indeed true that the German 
combines in his nature traits dangerous to the fundamental princi- 


pies of the present system of our society. Abject in adversity and 
minority, he becomes aggressive when favored by fortune and num- 
ber. We have seen these features developed in Europe and even 
in our own country. We have witnessed the abject degradation of 
the German, when at the beginning of the century so-called Dutch 
slaves were sold in cargoes to the highest bidder. In the year 
1817 six thousand German redemptioners were landed in Pennsyl- 
vania, where whole families were purchased by free negroes, of 
which there were then large numbers in Maryland.* That the 
German, despite the quality of infection that characterizes his doc- 
trines, is of a clannish nature which with difficulty loses all traces 
of German origin, may be easily seen in Pennsylvania, the State 
which has suffered most from the ravages of Socialism. In that 
State there may be found at the present day whole communities of 
these people who have preserved the mother tongue to the exclusion 
of the Engish language. There can indeed be little doubt that 
German colonization, wherever it goes, is apt to illustrate the dic- 
tum of Lamartine when he said of the Turks that they were camped 
in Europe. As the Turk brings with him all the peculiarities of 
barbarism, so the German imports all the characteristics of the 
fatherland, and hands them down to succeeding ages without the 
Balkans for a barrier or the Koran for a curb. 

Mr. Seward's fears apply pertinently to a large part of the 
six million Germans who now form a portion of the American 
Union. Of these the Socialists justly claim large numbers, and, 
if we examine the first acts and constitution of the Socialistic Labor 
party, it will appear that from its very foundation the chief offi- 
cials and ringleaders of the organization were and still are Germans, 
not a few of whom have been expelled or have fled from their 
native country because of conspiracy against society. Nevertheless, 
these men have become the leaders of a great national and Ameri- 
can movement. 

At the first National Convention of Socialists, held at Philadelphia 
July 19, 1876, the year preceding the great railway strikes, three- 
fourths of the delegates present bore German names. A previous 
convention had been held at Pittsburg, the hotbed of the railway 
strikes, but no regular constitution was there adopted. At the Union 
Congress of Philadelphia, however, lasting some days, the party first 
received from its sponsors the name of the " Workingmen's Party 

* See official report (p. 27) of Herr von Fiirstenvarthcr, Stuttgart and Tubingen, 


of the United States." Here a constitution was finally formulated 
and adopted amid excitement and exhortations to keep cool, and 
here the first appeal was made to the great working classes of the 
United States. In these seditious words did Messrs. Sorge and 
Gabriel, two German delegates to the Union Congress, make their 
api)eal to the country : " Rise, then, ye sons and daughters of labor ! 
Rally round its flag, and carry it to the heights of humanity ! Alter 
and amend whatever we did wrong or may be impracticable, but join 
hands with us for the establishment of that fraternal union of the 
disinherited and down-trodden wages-laborer which will relieve us 
from the evils of capitalistic society." These words strengthened the 
faithful, and the strikes grew with their growth and strengthened 
with their strength. 

At the National Congress of the workingmen held at Newark, 
New Jersey, at the end of December, 1877, the year of the great labor 
strikes, the name of the party Avas changed to the " Socialistic Labor 
Party," and most of the clauses of the platform and constitution 
adopted at Philadelphia were retained. Here, however, all the 
principles were duly discussed and adopted by an assembly consid- 
erably larger than the Union Congress. It comprised among its 
members representatives from the remotest States of the Union. 
In this large assembly, again, over one half of the representatives 
were German, and the dlected chairman, as well as two thirds 
of the committees chosen, could boast a German origin. Indeed, 
at this meeting the inconvenience attending the presence of so many 
German agitators, but lately arrived from the mother country and 
totally ignorant of the English language, became so apparent that 
a resolution was passed recommending each section to send to future 
conventions of the party delegates familiar with the English tongue. 
The following platform was adopted. We give it as it appeared 
in the last election bulletins. To any reader familiar with the writ- 
ings of Lassalle and Karl Marx, it will present but an abstract 
from their works : 

" The earth is man'Sy and the fullness thereof." 


"Labor being the source of all wealth and civilization, aiid useful labor 
being possible only by and through the associated eiforts of the people, the 
results of labor should^ therefore, in all justice, belong to society. The sys- 
tem under which society is now organized is imperfect and hostile to the 


general welfare, siuce through it the directors of labor, necessarily a small 
minority, are enabled in the competitive struggle to practically monopolize 
all the means of labor — all opportunities to produce for and supply the wants 
of the people — and the masses are therefore maintained in poverty and de- 

" The industrial emancipation of labor, which must be achieved by the 
working classes themselves, independent of all political parties but their own, 
is consequently the great end, to which every political movement should be 
subordinate as a means. 

" Since the ruling political parties have always sought only the direct inter- 
est of the dominant or wealthy classes, endeavored to uphold their industrial 
supremacy, and to perpetuate the present condition of society, it is now the 
duty of the working people to organize themselves into one great Labor 
party, using political power to achieve industrial independence. The material 
condition of the working people in all civilized countries being identical, and 
resulting from the same cause, the struggle for industrial emancipation is in- 
ternational, and must naturally be cooperative and mutual; therefore the 
organization of National and International Trade and Labor Unions upon a 
socialistic basis is an absolute necessity. For these reasons the Socialistic 
Labor party has been founded. We demand that the resources of life — the 
means of production, public transportation and communication, land, ma- 
chinery, railroads, telegraph lines, canals, etc., become, as fast as practicable, 
the common property of the whole people through the Government — to 
abolish the wage system and substitute in its stead cooperative production, 
with a just distribution of its rewards. 

"The Socialistic Labor party presents the following demands as measures 
to ameliorate the condition of the working people under our present competi- 
tive system and to gradually accomplish the entire removal of the same : 

" 1. Eight hours for the present as a legal working day, and prompt pun- 
ishment of all violators. 

" 2. Sanitary inspection of all conditions of labor, means of subsistence 
and dwellings included. 

" 3. Bureaus of Labor Statistics in all States as well as in the National 
Government. The officers of the same to be elected by the people. 

" 4. Prohibition of the use of prison labor by private employers or cor- 

" 5. Prohibition of the employment of children under fourteen years of 
age in industrial establishments. 

" 6. Compulsory education of all children under fourteen years of age. 
All materials, books, etc., necessary in the public schools, to be furnished 
free of charge. 

" 7. Prohibition of the employment of female labor in occupations detri- 
mental to the health or morality, and equalization of women's wages with 
those of men, where equal service is performed. 

" 8. Strict laws making employers liable for all accidents resulting through 
their negligence to the injury of their employees. 


" 9. All wages to be paid in the lawful money of the nation and at inter- 
vals of time not exceeding one week. Violations of this rule to be legally 

"10. X)l\ conspiracy laws operating against the right of workingmen to 
strike or induce otliers to strike shall be repealed. 

"11. Gratuitous administration of justice in all courts of law. 

" 12. All indirect taxation to be abolished, and a graded income tax col- 
lected in its stead. 

" 13. All banking and insurance to be conducted by the Government. 

" 14. The right of suffrage sliall in no wise be abridged. 

" 15. Direct popular legislation, enabling the people to propose or reject 
any law at their will, and introduction of minority representation in all legis- 
lative elections. 

" 16. Every public oflBcer shall be at all times subject to prompt recall by 
the election of a successor. 

" 17. The importation of coolies under contract must be immediately pro- 
hibited, and those now in America under similar obligations shall be released 
from the same. 

" The ignorance of the workingman as to his rights and wrongs is the 
cause of his enslavement by the intelligent ruffians of the age. 

" Production belongs to the producer ; the tools belong to the toiler. 

" Economical, political, and religious liberty constitute the Holy Trinity of 
Human Freedom." 

It was decided at Newark to conduct the affairs of the party by 
conventions, executive committees, and a board of supervision, the 
National Convention to assemble at least once in every two years, 
and the organization to be divided into sections embracing the 
whole of the United States. Tlie following extracts from rules and 
regulations prescribed by the Newark Convention will give some 
conception of the care and minuteness with which the society is 
organized : 

" Ten persons may form a section, providing they acknowledge the plat- 
form and constitution and resolutions of the National and State Conventions, 
and belong to no other political party. They shall demand admission to the 
party by sending a list of members to the National Executive Committee, and 
both list of membership and dues for the year to the State Executive Commit- 
tee. Each section shall send each month a report of its numerical and finan- 
cial condition, also its progress and prospects, to the National and also the 
State Executive Committee. It shall establish proper connections with the 
trades-unions, and endeavor to organize new ones upon the Socialistic basis. 

" Only one main section shall be established in each city or town. When 
necessary, however, additional sections may be formed by those unable to 
take part in business meetings conducted in the English language. But in 


matters of local importance, especially in political campaigns, all tlie sections 
shall be as one body. 

" The section shall be the judge of its own members and responsible for 
their actions. 

" Sections of different localities may propose the calling of a special State 
Convention. Ten sections are necessary to form a State organization. All 
ward and district organizations, including all branches and suburbs, shall be- 
long to the main section. No ward or district organization shall conduct 
business of an important local character independently of the main section. 
Each section shall hold an agitation meeting at least once every two weeks, 
and a regular business meeting at least once a month. Three fourths of the 
members of a section must be wages- workers. The names of all persons ap- 
plying for admission to the party must be voted upon at the regular business 
meeting of the main local section. Every section belonging to the party for 
three months prior to the National Convention, and which has fulfilled all its 
obligations, is entitled to representation therein by oue delegate for each one 
hundred members or fraction thereof." 

The National Convention frames the national platform, decides 
the form of organization, nominates the national candidates, and 
directs the national agitation, selects the place where the next 
National Convention will be held, and where the National Executive 
Committee and the Board of Supervision will be located. It fixes 
the salaries of party officers. It selects the corresponding and finan- 
cial secretaries, and investigates and decides all difficulties within the 

" The State Conventions will assemble at a proper time where the State 
elections are held. Each section is entitled to representation in the State 
Convention by one delegate for every fifty members or fraction thereof. 

" The State Convention frames the State platform, nominates the State 
candidates, and decides where the State Executive Committee shall be located. 
All State and local platforms must be based upon the national platform, and 
shall not conflict with the principles therein declared. There is a National 
Executive Committee, and in each State a State Executive Committee. It is 
the duty of the National Executive Committee to carry out the resolutions of 
the National Convention, to organize and centralize the movement, to conduct 
and manage the agitation generally, and to establish proper relations and 
communication with the trades-unions of our own country and with the Social- 
istic parties of Europe. It is further incumbent upon it to issue semi-annu- 
ally a report of the party, stating definitely the condition of every section and 
of the party's finances. 

" The State Executive Committees are required to send every three months 
a full report showing the condition of their sections to the National Executive 
Committee. There is a board of supervision whose duty it is to watch over 
the acts of the National Executive Committee and of the whole party. 


" In each State organization the sections pay five cents per month for each 
member of the State Executive Committee, from which funds the State Ex- 
ecutive Committee pays to the Xational Executive Committee the sum of 
three cents per month. In case of need the National Executive Committee 
may with concurrence of the Board of Supervision call for the collection of 
voluntary contributions to the national funds. 

All members, in acknowledging the platform and constitution, 
take upon themselves the obligations to assist each other to the 
extent of their ability in case of need. Each section elects from 
its midst an organizer, agitator, or, in other words, " a drummer," 
whose business it is to recruit as many members as can be enticed 
to join the ranks of the party. 

"It is incumbent upon every member to pay, as monthly dues, at least ten 
cents, of which sum five cents is sent to the State Executive Committee. In- 
valids or unemployed members are excused from these payments. 

" Tiie emancipation of women is to be accomplished with the emancipa- 
ti(m of men, and the so-called woman's rights question to be solved with 
the labor question. 

*' Every member is expected to subscribe for at least one of the party or- 

We now come to the measures adopted for the regulation of 
the press. These very clearly demonstrate not only the essentially 
German character of the Socialistic Labor party, but they offer the 
conclusion in one sense encouraging, that Gennan Socialism is not 
initiative with the people of the United States, although their minds 
have proved singularly receptive to foreign influences. It has thus 
come to pass that we have to deal with a national movement led by 
German agitators. 

The regulations prescribe that the party shall maintain but one 
official organ in each language, namely, the " Arbeiterstimme " (Ger- 
man) of New York, the " Delnicke Listy " (Bohemian) of New 
York, and the " Socialist " (American) of Chicago. 

We are told in the regulations that the party organs shall repre- 
sent the interests of the working people, and spread among them a 
knowledge of social economy, or in other words a knowledge of 
the beneficent results accruing to all indigent people by the equal dis- 
tribution of property. Although the " Arbeiterstimme " is declared 
the official German organ of the party, there is now published in 
New York the " Volks-Zeitung," another German journal, which 
boasts a daily circulation of ten thousand copies ; yet a year has not 
elapsed since its foundation. All Socialistic newspapers espousing 


the interests of the party are conducted on the cooperative plan, 
and are said to be mostly self-sustaining— a significant fact when it 
is considered that enormous sums have been sunk in numerous 
efforts to establish party organs in this country, and that for the 
first time in the United States journals hostile to the law of the 
land have met with sufficient encouragement to prosper. It also is 
significant to note that, out of twenty-seven journals published in 
the interests of the party, fifteen are edited by German agitators. 
By the light of these facts it may be seen how perfect is the organi- 
zation of the Socialist Labor party in the United States, as recon- 
structed since the strikes. The following extract from a letter writ- 
ten in the month of May last by an influential American Socialist, 
and recently published in the "Revue des Deux Mondes," will 
serve to indicate the opinions prevailing in the ranks of the party 
itself concerning the progress now making : 

" We are at work not only in the great cities but in many others, and are 
gaining ground with a rapidity at which even we are astonished. Since July 
last, in ten months, the number of our followers has quadrupled, and we have 
every reason to believe that the progress will continue in the same ratio. In 
Cincinnati the recruits are drilled every week, and from week to week the 
number of volunteers under arms increases from five to eight per cent." 

We have given a somewhat elaborate account of the laws 
formulated for the Labor party in this country under the auspices 
of German agitators, that, with these hitherto unpublished facts be- 
fore him, it may be within the power of the reader to judge of the 
extent and ability of an organization which, if at any moment 
swelled by numbers and stimulated by industrial depression, might 
burst upon us as a mighty torrent, perhaps too powerful to stem at 
the outset, and calculated to threaten the best social and business 
interests of a country vast in extent of territory and fairly destitute 
of military protection. 

To the indigent and ignorant laborer, indeed, we must confess 
that the whole scheme of the new social order wears a most allur- 
ing aspect. It is easy to picture the Arcadian Utopia which rises in 
his ravished fancy. Universal brotherhood, comfort and plenty, 
free railways, free telegraphs, free theatres and amusements, gra- 
tuitous instruction, an end to imprisonment, an end to caste, ma- 
terialism to replace religion, "the mere opinion of nations," the 
state the universal, sole proprietor and administrator of the entire 
industry of the country ; state help in every direction, all men to 


feed and fatten at the public crib ; in fact, an end to care and 
trouble, and an era of competency and contentment, such as dis- 
tinf^uished the home of Evangelme, where ''the richest was poor, 
and the poorest lived in abundance." 

These hopes are indeed bright and alluring. They are often, no 
doubt, presented by sincere and good men, free from the blood of 
the Commune, and actuated by pure motives. But the obverse of 
the medal which reason forces upon thoughtful men offers barriers 
insurmountable in practice. It is not our purpose to show, save 
incidentally, that the programme of modern Socialism aims at the 
destruction of the best interests of society, or that it is devoid of 
those possibilities or enduring characteristics which mark every suc- 
cessful innovation. Able and dispassionate disquisitions to this effect 
are to be found in many current w^orks of the day. In one light 
alone, however, the case must appear impracticable. Granted, a7'gu' 
mentl causa, that the difference existing between the workingman's 
knowledge and necessities is now greater than in former times ; 
that machinery, over-products, and the growing concentration of 
capital must finally bring the capitalist and the laborer to a dead- 
lock ; that the majority of our States are bankrupt ; that the ex- 
penses of our complex Government, embracing State, municipal, and 
central administration, exceed those of England, France, or any 
other proportionate population, and that these combined evils must 
finally produce a crisis, placing in the hands of the laborer all the 
wealth and control of the country — granted all this, then, what 
would ensue ? 

According to all Socialist authorities in America, eight hours' 
work will, with the present perfection of machinery, create a slight 
over-production. In this case the American Socialist would be 
driven in self-defense to establish a protective policy. This w^ould 
exclude the product of the capital-ridden wretches of other lands, 
although the result would be that we should be enjoying our wel- 
fare at their expense, thus excluding from redemption the great 
majority of suffering humanity. For, w^here in former times we 
helped them with some of our custom, the increased cost of our 
labor would compel us to altogether exclude tKe products of our 
" kin beyond sea." For it must be manifest even to the dullest 
Socialist, in his moments of more sober reflection, that if the work- 
men of other nations work twelve hours a day, our own people 
working but eight, the foreign producer could manufacture for a 
price with which the American could not compete. On the other 
VOL. cxxviiL — NO. 269. 25 


hand, if the American producer should work much less than eight 
hours per day, American society becomes bankrupt, and if again he 
prolongs the working-day beyond eight hours, he abandons the 
very prize so long coveted and demanded, whereas to secure this 
prize he would have contributed to the upheaval of our present 
civilization. Could, therefore, the Socialists effect their aims in this 
country, the toiling and unredeemed millions in Germany, Russia, 
France, England, and other lands would, because of our own selfish 
motives, be reduced to the same plight in their relations to us as the 
laborer to-day stands to the proprietor. The reverse would of course 
hold good in the case of any other nation which might first attain 
the great end. For no Socialist is surely so sanguine as to believe 
that his plans, by a single stroke of the magician's wand, can be 
simultaneously put into practical and universal operation through- 
out the civilized world. Thus without united, universal, and simul- 
taneous action, which is impossible, the plans of the Socialist become 

It is possible that Socialism in a modified form will be tried in 
some of the older countries of Europe. There an already dense 
population, increasing in geometrical proportion and overloaded 
with vast and ever-growing debts, may demand some experiment to 
relieve the poor. In England, where an overcrowded population 
more than doubles itself in thirty years, despite an enormous emi- 
gration, the danger is especially great. But it is improbable that 
Socialism, even in an amended form, should, at an early date, meet 
with any permanent success in the United States, where the unim- 
proved resources of nature offer an almost unlimited field for the 
restless energies of the people. The restrictions which Socialism 
would impose would be intolerable to the activity of any class in 
the Union ; for he who enters the portals of the social El Dorado 
leaves behind him hope, that most human of human emotions, and 
with it all emulation, all ambition, and therefore all progress. Still, 
whatever might be the result of the second sober sense which would 
ultimately characterize our people, it must yet not be ignored 
that even a momentary craze of any extended nature would be 
fraught with incalculable mischief to the best interests of society. 
That in moments of distress and discontent the idtima ratio regum 
becomes the first resort of our people, has been abundantly revealed 
by the great civil war, the strikes of 1877, and by the late troubles 
in California, where German agitators moved and incited the rioters 
to acts of violence. We are besides daily reminded of this fact by 


events which pass almost unnoticed. Within a few weeks a gang 
of organized tramps have seized part of a railroad in Michigan, with 
the purpose of appropriating and administering the entire line, and 
many other incidents of the day point in the same direction. It is 
stated by Monsieur Charles de Varigny, a recent French observer 
of the Socialist movement in America, that there exists in almost 
every State of the Union a contingent of Socialist volunteers. In 
Pennsylvania alone he estimates the number at from sixty to ninety 
thousand men. The Western States are remarkable for the pros- 
perous condition of their Socialist sections. Here, as in other parts 
of the Union, the leaders are German, while a good proportion of 
the rank and file of the party are recruited among native Americans. 
At the last general election a number of Socialists were elected to 
the Legislature of Illinois. Some of the towns of Ohio number 
Socialists even among their municipal officers. In Youngtown, for 
example, the recently elected mayor and corporation were all avowed 
members of the Socialist party, and many other instances of the 
growth and strength of the organization could be cited had we not 
already exceeded our limits. 

In conclusion, it may be well to say that no spirit of pessimism 
or sensation has prompted this task. In first directing his attention 
to Socialism in America the writer was moved by motives of pure 
curiosity. No one could have been more surprised at the discovery 
of so perfect an organization, the fanatic earnestness of its followers, 
and the strength of its numbers. Nor can we view without grave 
apprehension the fact that Prince Bismarck is at present secretly 
encouraging the emigration to the United States of proscribed Ger- 
man agitators, and defraying their expenses from the enormous 
secret service fund at the command of the Imperial Chancellor. 
For the present we must part with our subject, postponing for 
final consideration, in a succeeding paper, the protective measures 
necessary to shield American society from the schemes of the Ger- 
man Government and the menacing confederation which honey- 
combs the Union from sea to sea. 



Me. Hodgson has written his father's life upon a very unusual 
plan, for which he makes apologies in his preface. The apologies, 
however, were not strictly necessary, for the book is an interesting 
one, more so, perhaps, than if it had been composed in the manner 
usually followed in such cases. The late Archdeacon Hodgson 
was a genial and accomplished scholar, a man of the world, and an 
indefatigable versifier ; but he was not a brilliant writer, and our 
loss is not great, in the fact that his letters have for the most part 
not been preserved. His son and biographer lays before us, in de- 
fault of any specimens of his own share in his correspondence, a 
selection from the letters that he received from his friends. These 
were numerous, for Francis Hodgson had the good fortune to in- 
spire a great deal of affection and confidence. His chief claim to 
the attention of posterity resides in the fact that he was an early 
and much-trusted intimate of Lord Byron. A good many of By- 
ron's letters to him were printed by Moore, to whom, however, 
Hodgson surrendered but a portion of this correspondence. His 
son here publishes a number of new letters, together with a great 
many communications from Mrs. Leigh, the poet's sister, and two 
or three from Lady Byron. All this portion of these volumes is 
extremely interesting, and constitutes, indeed, their principal value. 
It throws a clearer, though by no means a perfectly clear, light 
upon the much-discussed episode of the separation between Byron 
and his wife, and upon the character of his devoted sister. The book 
contains, besides, a series of letters from Hodgson's Eton and Cam- 
bridge friends, and in its latter portion a variety of extracts from 

* Memoir of the Rev. Francis Hodgson, B. D., with Numerous Letters from Lord 
Byron and Others. By his Son, the Rev. T. P. Hodgson, M. A. London : Macmillan, 


his correspondence with such people as Lord Denman (Chief Justice 
of England, who presided at the trial of Queen Caroline, and in- 
curred the bitter animosity of George IV.), James Montgomery, the 
late Herman Merivale, the late Duke of Devonshire, and the charm- 
ing Mrs. Robert Arkwright, who figures in the lately published 
memoirs of Fanny Kemble. The picture of Hodgson's youth and 
early manhood, with his numerous friendships, his passion for lit- 
erature, his extraordinary and unparalleled fecundity in the produc- 
tion of poetical epistles, his good spirits, good sense, and great 
industry, is an extremely pleasant one, and gives an agreeable idea 
of the tone of serious young Englishmen, sixty or seventy years 
ago, who were also good fellows. Hodgson's first intention on 
leaving Cambridge had been to study for the bar ; but after some 
struggles the literary passion carried the day, and he became an 
ardent " reviewer." He worked a great deal for the critical peri- 
odicals of the early years of the century, notably for the " Edin- 
burgh Review," and he produced (besides executing a translation 
of Juvenal) a large amount of satirical or would - be satirical 
verse. His biographer give.? a great many examples of his poetical 
powers, which, however, chiefly illustrate his passion for turning 
couplets a propos of everything and of nothing. The facility of 
these effusions is more noticeable than their point. In 1815 Hodg- 
son went into the Church, and in 1836, after having spent many 
years at Bake well, in Derbyshire, in a living which he held from 
the Duke of Devonshire, he was appointed Archdeacon of Derby. 
In 1840 he was made ProA^ost of Eton College, a capacity in which 
he instituted various salutary reforms (he abolished the old custom 
of the " ]Montem," which had become a very demoralizing influence). 
Archdeacon Hodgson died in 1852. 

Mrs. Leigh wrote to him at the time of Byron's marriage, in 
which she felt great happiness,,that her brother had " said that in 
all the years that he had been acquainted with you he never had 
had a moment's disagreement with you : * I have quarreled with 
Hobham, with everybody but Hodgson,' were his own words." By- 
ron's letters and allusions to his friend quite bear out this dec- 
laration, and they present his irritable and passionate nature in the 
most favorable light. He had a great esteem for Hodgson's judg- 
ment, both in literature and in life, and he defers to it with a do- 
cility which is touching in a spoiled young nobleman who, on occa-. 
sion, can make a striking display of temper. Mr. Hodgson gives 
no definite account of the origin of his father's acquaintance with 


Byron — he simply says that their intimacy, which in 1808 had 
become complete, had " doubtless been formed previously, during 
Hodgson's visits to London and Cambridge and to the Drurys at 
Harrow." In 1808 Hodgson was appointed tutor in moral philoso- 
phy at King's College, Cambridge, and in this year " Byron came 
to Cambridge for the purpose of availing himself of his privilege 
as a nobleman, and taking his M. A. degree, although he had bnly 
matriculated in 1805. . . . From this time until early in 1816 the 
friends constantly met, and when absent as constantly correspond- 
ed." Hodgson was completely under the charm of Byron's richly- 
endowed nature ; but his affection, warm as it was (and its warmth 
is attested by the numerous copies of verse which he addressed to 
his noble friend, and which, though they exhibit little poetical in- 
spiration, show great tenderness of feeling), was of that pure kind 
which leaves the judgment unbribed. Byron's letters have always 
a great charm, and those quoted by Mr. Hodgson, whether pub- 
lished for the first time, or anticipated by Moore, are full of youth- 
ful wit and spontaneity. In 1811, while the second canto of " Childe 
Harold " (Hodgson was helping to revise it) was going through the 
press, the poet's affectionate Mentor had, by letter, a religious dis- 
cussion with him. Hodgson's side of the controversy has disap- 
peared, but Byron's skeptical rejoinders are full of wit, levity, and 
a cynicism which (like his cynicism through life) was half natural 
and half affected. " As to your immortality, if people are to live, 
why die ? And any carcasses, which are to rise again, are they worth 
raising? I hope, if mine is, that I shall have a better pair of legs 
than I have moved on these two-and-twenty years, as I shall be 
sadly behind in the squeeze into paradise." The letters which 
throw light upon Byron's unhappy marriage are all, as we have 
said, of great interest. Hodgson's correspondence with IVIi's. Leigh, 
which became an intimate one, began in 1814 and lasted for forty 
years. Staying with Byron at Newstead in the autumn of that 
year, she first writes to him as a substitute for her brother, who, 
" being very lazy," has begged her to take his pen. It was at this 
moment that he became engaged to Miss Milbanke, and one of the 
few extracts from his father's own letters, given by Mr. Hodgson, 
is a very sympathetic account of a meeting with Byron in Cam- 
bridge while the latter was in the glow of just having completed 
his arrangements for marrying " one of the most divine beings on 
earth." There are several letters of jVIrs. Leigh's during 1815, after 
the marriage had taken place, going on into the winter of 1816, 


when they assume a highly dramatic interest. It is interesting, in 
view of the extraordinary theory which in the later years of her 
life Lady Byron was known to hold on the subject of the relations 
between her husband and his sister, and which were given to the 
world in so regrettable a manner not long after her death, to observe 
that Mrs. Leigh's letters afford the most striking intrinsic evidence 
of the purely phantasmal character of the famous accusation, and 
place the author's character in a highly honorable and touching 
light. This is the view taken, in the strongest manner, by the edi- 
tor of these volumes, who regards Mrs. Leigh as the most devoted 
and disinterested of sisters — as the good genius, the better angel, 
of the perverse and intractable poet. She appears to have been a 
very sympathetic and conscientious woman, not very witty or very 
clever, but addicted to writing rather expansive, confidential, lady- 
like letters, and much concerned about the moral tone and religious 
views of her brother, whose genius and poetic fame inspire her with 
a quite secondary interest. She appeals to Hodgson, as her brother's 
nearest and most trusted friend, to come up to town and intercede 
with either party to prevent the separation. Hodgson obeyed her 
summons, and did his best in the matter, but his efforts were una- 
vailing. His son quotes a remarkable lett