US flag and bible cross

RISE OF CONSTITUTIONAL LIBERTY by Dr. Richard Salter Storrs July 4 1876

RS StorrRise Of Constitutional Liberty An Oration Delivered By The Rev. Dr. R. S. Storrs, At The Academy Of Music, New York, July 4, 1876.

Mr. President—Fellow-citizen : The long-expected day has come, and passing peacefully the impalpable line which separates ages, the Republic completes its hundredth year. The predictions in which affectionate hope gave inspiration to political prudence are fulfilled. The fears of the timid, and the hopes of those to whom our national existence is a menace, are alike disappointed. The fable of the physical world becomes the fact of the political; and after alternate sunshine and storm, after heavings of the earth which only deepened its roots, and ineffectual blasts of lightning whose lurid threat died in the air, under a sky now raining on it benignant influence, the century-plant of American Independence and popular government bursts into this magnificent blossom of a joyful celebration illuminating the land!

With what desiring though doubtful expectation those whose action we commemorate looked for the possible coming of this day, we know from the records which they have left. With what anxious solicitude the statesmen and the soldiers of the following generation anticipated the changes which might take place before this Centennial year should be reached, we have heard ourselves, in their great and fervent admonitory words. How dim and drear the prospect seemed to our own hearts fifteen years since, when, on the fourth of July 1861, the XXXVIIth Congress met at Washington with no representative in either House from any State south of Tennessee and Western Virginia, and when a determined and numerous army, under skillful commanders, approached and menaced the capital and the government—this we surely have not forgotten; nor how, in the terrible years which followed, the blood and fire, and vapor of smoke, seemed oftentimes to swim as a sea, or to rise as a wall, between our eyes and this anniversary.

“It cannot outlast the second generation from those who founded it,” was the exulting conviction of the many who loved the traditions and state of monarchy, and who felt them insecure before the widening fame in the world of our prosperous Republic. “It may not reach its hundredth year,” was the deep and sometimes the sharp apprehension of those who felt, as all of us felt, that their own liberty, welfare, hope, with the brightest political promise of the world, were bound up with the unity and the life of our nation. Never was solicitude more intense, never was prayer to Almighty God more fervent and constant— not in the earliest beginnings of our history, when Indian ferocity threatened that history with a swift termination, not in the days of supremest trial amid the Revolution—than in those years when the nation seemed suddenly split asunder, and forces which had been combined for its creation were clenched and rocking back and forth in bloody grapple on the question of its maintenance.

The prayer was heard. The effort and the sacrifice have come to their fruitage; and to-day the nation—still one, as at the start, though now expanded over such immense spaces, absorbing such incessant and diverse elements from other lands, developing within it opinions so conflicting, interests so various, and forms of occupation so novel and manifold—to-day the nation, emerging from the toil and the turbulent strife, with the earlier and the later clouds alike swept out of its resplendent stellar arch, pauses from its work to remember and rejoice; with exhilarated spirit to anticipate its future; with reverent heart to offer to God its great Te Deum.(1)

Not here alone, in this great city, whose lines have gone out into all the earth, and whose superb progress in wealth, in culture, and in civic renown, is itself the most illustrious token of the power and beneficence of that frame of government under which it has been realized; not alone in yonder, I had almost said adjoining, city, whence issued the paper that first announced our national existence, and where now rises the magnificent Exposition, testifying for all progressive States to their respect and kindness toward us, the radiant clasp of diamond and opal on the girdle of the sympathies which interweave their peoples with ours; not alone in Boston, the historic town, first in resistance to British aggression, and foremost in plans for the new and popular organization, one of whose citizens wrote his name, as if cutting it with a plowshare, at the head of all on our great charter, another of whose citizens was its intrepid and powerful champion, aiding its passage through the Congress; not there alone, nor yet in other great cities of the land, but in smaller towns, in villages and hamlets, this day will be kept, a secular Sabbath, sacred alike to memory and to hope.

Not only, indeed, where men are assembled, as we are here, will it be honored. The lonely and remote will have their part in this commemoration. Where the boatman follows the winding stream, or the woodman explores the forest shades; where the miner lays down his eager drill beside rocks which guard the precious veins; or where the herdsman, along the sierras, looks forth on the seas which now reflect the rising day, which at our midnight shall be gleaming like gold in the setting sun —there also will the day be regarded, as— a day of memorial. The sailor on the sea will note it, and dress his ship in its brightest array of flags and bunting. Americans dwelling in foreign lands will note and keep it.

London itself will today be more festive because of the event which a century ago shadowed its streets, incensed its Parliament, and tore from the crown of its obstinate King the chiefest jewel. On the boulevards of Paris, in the streets of Berlin, and along the leveled bastions of Vienna, at Marseilles and at Florence, upon the silent liquid ways of stately Venice, in the passes of the Alps, under the shadow of church and obelisk, palace and ruin, which still prolong the majesty of Rome; yea, further East, on the Bosphorus, and in Syria; in Egypt, which writes on the front of its compartment in the great Exhibition, “The oldest people of the world sends its morning-greeting to the youngest nation;” along the heights behind Bombay, in the foreign hongs of Canton,(2) in the “Islands of the Morning,” which found the dawn of their new age in the startling sight of an American squadron entering their bays—everywhere will be those who have thought of this day, and who join with us to greet its coming.

No other such anniversary, probably has attracted hitherto such general notice. You have seen Rome, perhaps, on one of those shining April days when the traditional anniversary of the founding of the city fills its streets with civic processions, with military display, and the most elaborate fire-works in Europe; you may have seen Holland, in 1782, when the whole country bloomed with orange on the three-hundredth anniversary of the capture by the sea-beggars of the city of Briel, and of the revolt against Spanish domination which thereupon flashed on different sides into sudden explosion. But these celebrations, and others like them, have been chiefly local. The world outside has taken no wide impression from them. This of ours is the first of which many lands, in different tongues, will have had report. Partly because the world is narrowed in our time, and its distant peoples are made neighbors, by the fleeter machineries now in use; partly because we have drawn so many to our population from foreign lands, while the restless and acquisitive spirit of our people has made them at home on every shore; but partly, also, and essentially, because of the nature and the relations of that event which we commemorate, and of the influence exerted by it on subsequent history, the attention of men is more or less challenged, in every centre of commerce and of thought, by this anniversary. Indeed it is not unnatural to feel—certainly it is not irreverent to feel—that they who by wisdom, by valor, and by sacrifice, have contributed to perfect and maintain the institutions which we possess, and have added by death as well as by life to the luster of our history, must also have an interest in this day; that in their timeless habitations they remember us beneath the lower circle of the heavens, are glad in our joy and share and lead our grateful praise. To a spirit alive with the memories of the time, and rejoicing in its presage of nobler futures, recalling the great, the beloved, the heroic, who have labored and joyfully died for its coming, it will not seem too fond an enthusiasm to feel that the air is quick with shapes we cannot see, and glows with faces whose light serene we may not catch! They who counseled in the Cabinet, they who defined and settled the law in decisions of the Bench, they who pleaded with mighty eloquence in the Senate, they who poured out their souls in triumphant effusion for the liberty which they loved in forum or pulpit, they who gave their young and glorious life as an offering on the field, that government for the people, and by the people, might not perish from the earth—it cannot be but that they too have part and place in this Jubilee of our history! God make our doings not unworthy of such spectators! and make our spirit sympathetic with theirs from whom all selfish passion and pride have now forever passed away!

The interest which is felt so distinctly and widely in this anniversary reflects a light on the greatness of the action which it commemorates. It shows that we do not unduly exaggerate the significance or the importance of that; that it had really large, even world-wide relations, and contributed an effective and a valuable force to the furtherance of the cause of freedom, education, humane institutions, and popular advancement, wherever its influence has been felt.

Yet when we consider the action itself, it may easily seem but slight in its nature, as it was certainly commonplace in its circumstances. There was nothing even picturesque in its surroundings, to enlist for it the pencil of the painter, or help to fix any luminous image of that which was done on the popular memory.

In this respect it is singularly contrasted with other great and kindred events in general history; with those heroic and fruitful actions in English history which had especially prepared the way for it, and with which the thoughtful student of the past will always set it in intimate relations. Its utter simplicity, as compared with their splendor, becomes impressive.

When, five centuries and a half before, on the fifteenth of June, and the following days, in the year of our Lord 1215, the English barons met King John in the long meadow of Runnemede, and forced from him the Magna Charta—the strong foundation and steadfast bulwark of English liberty, concerning which Mr. Hallam has said in our time that “all which has been since obtained is little more than as confirmation or commentary,”—no circumstance was wanting, of outward pageantry, to give dignity, brilliance, impressiveness, to the scene. On tho one side was the King, with the Bishops and nobles who attended him, with the Master of the Templars, and the Papal legate before whom he had lately rendered his homage.(3) On the other side was the great and determined majority of the barons of England, with multitudes of knights, armed vassals, and retainers, (4) With them in purpose, and in resolute zeal, were most of those who attended the King. Stephen Langton, Archbishop of Canterbury, the head of the English clergy, was with them; the Bishops of London, Winchester, Lincoln, Rochester, and of other great sees. The Earl of Pembroke, dauntless and wise, of vast and increasing power in the realm, and not long after to be its Protector, was really at their head. Robert Fitz-Walter, whose fair daughter Matilda the profligate king had forcibly abducted, was Marshal of the army—the “Army of God, and the Holy Church.” William Longsword, Earl of Salisbury, half-brother of the King, was on the field; the Earls of Albemarle, Arundel, Gloucester, Hereford, Norfolk. Oxford, the great Earl Warenne, who claimed the same right of the sword in his barony which William the Conqueror had had in the kingdom, the Constable of Scotland, Hubert de Burgh, seneschal of Poictou, and many other powerful nobles—descendants of the daring soldiers whose martial valor had mastered England, Crusaders who had followed Richard at Ascalon and at Jaffa, whose own liberties had since been in mortal peril. Some burgesses of London were present, as well; troubadours, minstrels, and heralds were not wanting; and doubtless there mingled with the throng those skillful clerks whose pens had drawn the great instrument of freedom, and whose training in language had given a remarkable precision to its exact clauses and cogent terms.

Pennons and banners streamed at large, and spearheads gleamed, above the host. The June sunshine flashed reflected from inland shield and muscled armor. The terrible quivers of English yeomen hung on their shoulders. The voice of trumpets, and clamoring bugles, was in the air. The whole scene was vast as a battle, though bright as a tournament; splendid, but threatening, like burnished clouds, in which lightnings sleep. The king, one of the handsomest men of the time, though cruelty, perfidy, and every foul passion must have left their traces on his face, was especially fond of magnificence in dress; wearing we are told, on one Christmas occasion, a rich mantle of red satin, embroidered with sapphires and pearls, a tunic of white damask, a girdle lustrous with precious stones, and a baldric from his shoulder, crossing his breast, set with diamonds and emeralds, while even his gloves, as indeed is still indicated on his fine effigy in Worcester cathedral, bore similar ornaments, the one a ruby, the other a sapphire.

Whatever was superb, therefore, in that consummate age of royal and baronial state, whatever was splendid in the glittering and grand apparatus of chivalry, whatever was impressive in the almost more than princely pomp of prelates of the Church,—

The boast of heraldry, the pomp of power,
And all that beauty, all that wealth can give,—

all this was marshaled on that historic plain in Surrey, where John and the barons faced each other, where Saxon king and Saxon earl had met in council before the Norman had footing in England; and all combined to give a fit magnificence of setting to the great charter there granted and sealed.

The tower of Windsor—not of the present castle and palace, but of the earlier detached fortress which already crowned the cliff, and from which John had come to the field—looked down on the scene. On the one side, low hills enclosed the meadow; on the other, the Thames flowed brightly by, seeking the capital and the sea. Every feature of the scene was English save one; but over all loomed, in a portentous and haughty stillness, in the ominous presence of the envoy from Rome, that ubiquitous power surpassing all others, which already had once laid the kingdom under interdict, and had exiled John from church and throne, but to which later he had been reconciled, and on which he secretly relied to annul the charter which he was granting.

The brilliant panorama illuminates the page which bears its story. It rises still as a vision before one, as he looks on the venerable parchment originals, preserved to our day in the British Museum. If it be true, as Hallam has said, that from that era a new soul was infused into the people of England, it must be confessed that the place, the day, and all the circumstances of that new birth were fitting to the great and the vital event.

That age passed away, and its peculiar splendor of aspect was not thereafter to be repeated. Yet when, four hundred years later, on the seventh of June,(5) 1628, the Petition of Right, the second great charter of the liberties of England, was presented by Parliament to Charles the First, the scene and its accessories were hardly less impressive.

Into that law—called a Petition, as if to mask the deadly energy of its blow upon tyranny—had been collected by the skill of its framers all the heads of the despotic prerogative which Charles had exercised, that they might all be smitten together, with one tremendous destroying stroke. The king, enthroned in his chair of state, looked forth on those who waited for his word, as still he looks, with his fore-casting and melancholy face, from the canvas of Van Dyck. Before him were assembled the nobles of England, in peaceful array, and not in armor, but with a civil power in their hands which the older gauntlets could not have held, and with the memories of a long renown almost as visible to themselves and to the king as were the tapestries suspended on the walls.

Crowding the bar, behind these descendants of the earlier barons, were the members of the House of Commons, with whom the law now presented to the king had had its origin, and whose boldness and tenacity had constrained the peers, after vain endeavor to modify its provisions, to accept them as they stood. They were the most powerful body of representatives of the kingdom that had yet been convened; possessing a private wealth it was estimated, surpassing three-fold that of the Peers, and representing not less than they the best life, and the oldest lineage, of the kingdom which they loved.

Their dexterous, dauntless, and far-sighted sagacity is yet more evident as we look back than their wealth or their breeding; and among them were men whose names will be familiar while England continues. Wentworth was there, soon to be the most dangerous of traitors of the cause of which he was then the champion, but who then appeared as resolute as ever to vindicate the ancient, lawful, and vital liberties of the kingdom; and Pym was there, the unsurpassed statesman, who, not long afterward was to warn the dark and haughty apostate that he never again would leave pursuit of him so long as his head stood on his shoulders.(6) Hampden was there, considerate and serene, but inflexible as an oak ; once imprisoned already for his resistance to an unjust taxation, and ready again to suffer and to conquer in the same supreme cause. Sir John Eliot was there, eloquent and devoted, who had tasted also the bitterness of imprisonment, and who after years of its subsequent experience, was to die a martyr in the Tower. Coke was there, seventy-seven years of age, but full of fire as full of fame, whose vehement and unswerving hand had had chief part in framing the Petition. Selden was there, the repute of whose learning was already continental. Sir Francis Seymour, Sir Robert Phillips, Strode, Hobart, Denzil Holies, and Valentine—such were the commoners; and there, at the outset of a career not imagined by either, faced the king a silent young member who had come now to his first Parliament at the age of twenty-nine, from the borough of Huntingdon, Oliver Cromwell.

In a plain cloth suit he probably stood among his colleagues. But they were often splendid, and even sumptuous, in dress; with slashed doublets, and cloaks of velvet, with flowing collars of rich lace, the swords by their sides, in embroidered belts, with flashing hilts, their very hats jeweled and plumed, the abundant dressed and perfumed hair falling in curls upon their shoulders. Here and there may have been those who still more distinctly symbolized their spirit, with steel corslets, overlaid with lace and rich embroidery.

So stood they in the presence, representing to the full the wealth, and genius, and stately civic pomp of England, until the king had pronounced his assent, in the express customary form, to the law which confirmed the popular liberties; and when, on hearing his unequivocal final assent, they burst into loud, even passionate acclamations of victorious joy, there had been from the first no scene more impressive in that venerable Hall, whose history went back to Edward the Confessor.

In what sharp contrast with the rich ceremonial and the splendid accessories of these preceding kindred events, appears that modest scene at Philadelphia, from which we gratefully date to-day a hundred years of constant and prosperous national life!

In a plain room, of an unpretending and recent building—the lower east room of what then was a State-house, what since has been known as the “Independence Hall”—in the midst of a city of perhaps thirty thousand inhabitants—a city which preserved its rural aspect, and the quaint simplicity of whose plan and structures had always been marked among American towns —were assembled probably less than fifty persons to consider a paper prepared by a young Virginia lawyer, giving reasons for a Resolve which the assembly had adopted two days before. They were farmers, planters, lawyers, physicians, surveyors of land, with one eminent Presbyterian clergyman. A majority of them had been educated at such schools, or primitive colleges, as then existed on this continent, while a few had enjoyed the rare advantage of training abroad, and foreign travel; but a considerable number, and among them some of the most influential, had had no other education than that which they had gained by diligent reading while at their trades or on their farms.

The figure to which our thoughts turn first is that of the author of the careful paper on the details of which the discussion turned. It has no special majesty or charm, the slight tall frame, the sun-burned face, the gray eyes spotted with hazel, the red hair which crowns the head; but already, at the age of thirty-three, the man has impressed himself on his associates as a master of principles, and of the language in which those principles find expression, so that his colleagues have left to him, almost wholly, the work of preparing the important Declaration. He wants readiness in debate, and so is now silent; but he listens eagerly to the vigorous argument and the forcible appeals of one of his fellows on the committee, Mr. John Adams, and now and then speaks with another of the committee, much older than himself—a stout man, with a friendly face, in a plain dress, whom the world had already heard something of as Benjamin Franklin. These three are perhaps most prominently before us as we recall the vanished scene, though others were there of fine presence and cultivated manners, and though all impress us as substantial and respectable representative men, however harsh the features of some, however brawny their hands with labor. But certainly nothing could be more unpretending, more destitute of pictorial charm than that small assembly of persons for the most part quite unknown to previous fame, and half of whose names it is not probable that half of us in this assembly could now repeat.

After a discussion somewhat prolonged as it seemed at the time, especially as it had been continued from previous days, and after some minor amendments of the paper, toward evening it was adopted, and ordered to be sent to the several States, signed by the president and the secretary; and the simple transaction was complete. Whatever there may have been of proclamation and bell-ringing appears to have come on subsequent days. It was almost a full month before the paper was engrossed, and signed by the members. It must have been nearly or quite the same time before the news of its adoption had reached the remoter parts of the land .

If pomp of circumstances were necessary to make an event like this great and memorable, there would have beeu others in our own history more worthy far of our commemoration. As matched against multitudes in general history, it would sink into instant and complete insignificance. Yet here, to-day, a hundred years from the adoption of that paper, in a city which counts its languages by scores, and beats with the thread of a million feet, in a country whose enterprise flies abroad over sea and land on the rush of engines not then imagined, in a time so full of exciting hopes that it hardly has leisure to contemplate the past, we pause from all our toil and traffic, our eager plans and impetuous debate, to commemorate the event. The whole land pauses, as I have said; and some distinct impression of it will follow the sun, wherever he climbs the steep of Heaven, until in all countries it has more or less touched the thoughts of men.

Why is this? is a question, the answer to which should interpret and vindicate our assemblage.

It is not simply because a century happens to have passed since the event thus remembered occurred. A hundred years are always closing from some event, and have been since Adam was in his prime. There was, of course, some special importance in the action then accomplished—in the nature of that action, since not in its circumstances—to justify such long record of it; and that importance it is ours to define. In the perspective of distance the small things disappear, while the great and eminent keep their place. As Carlyle has said: “A king in the midst of his body-guards, with his trumpets, warhorses, and gilt standard-bearers, will look great though he be little; only some Roman Carus can give audience to satrap ambassadors, while seated on the ground, with a woolen cap, and supping on boiled peas, like a common soldier.”(7)

What was, then, the great reality of power in what was done a hundred years since, which gives it its masterful place in history—makes it Roman and regal amid all its simplicity?

Of course, as the prime element of its power, it was the action of a People, and not merely of persons; and such action of a People, has always a momentum, a public force, a historic significance, which can pertain to no individual arguments and appeals. There are times, indeed, when it has the energy and authority in it of a secular inspiration; when the supreme soul which rules the world comes through it to utterance, and a thought surpassing man’s wisest plan, a will transcending his strongest purpose, is heard in its commanding voice.

It does not seem extravagant to say that the time to which our thoughts are turned was one of these.

For a century and a half the emigrants from Europe had brought hither, not the letters alone, the arts and industries, or the religious convictions, but the hardy moral and political life, which had there been developed in ages of strenuous struggle and work. France and Germany, Holland and Sweden, as well as England, Scotland, and Ireland, had contributed to this. The Austrian Tyrol, the Bavarian highlands, the Bohemian plain, Denmark, even Portugal, had their part in this colonization. The ample domain which hero received the earnest immigrants bad imparted to them of its own oneness; and diversities of language race, and custom, had fast disappeared in the governing unity of a common aspiration, and a common purpose to work out through freedom a nobler well-being.

The general moral life of this people, so various in origin, so accordant in spirit, had only risen to grander force through the toil and strife, the austere training, the long patience of endurance, to which it here had been subjected. The exposures to heat, and cold, and famine, to unaccustomed labors, to alternations of climate unknown in the old world, to malarial forces brooding above the mellow and drainless recent lands—these had fatally stricken many; but those who survived were tough and robust, the more so, perhaps, because of the perils which they had surmounted Education was not easy, books were not many, and the daily newspaper was unknown; but political discussion had been always going on, and men’s minds had gathered unconscious force as they strove with each other, in eager debate, on questions concerning the common welfare. They had had much experience in subordinate legislation, on the local matters belonging to their care; had acquired dexterity in performing public business, and had often had to resist or amend the suggestions or dictates of Royal governors. For a recent people, dwelling apart from older and conflicting States, they had had a large experience in war, the crack of the rifle being never unfamiliar along the near frontier, where disciplined skill was often combined with savage fury to sweep with sword or scar with fire their scattered settlements.

By every species, therefore, of common work, of discussion endurance, and martial struggle, the descendants of the colonists scattered along the American coast had been allied to each other. They were more closely allied than they knew. It needed only some signal occasion, some summons to a sudden heroic decision, to bring them into instant general combination; and Huguenot and Hollander, Swede, German, and Protestant Portuguese, as well as Englishman, Scotchman, Irishman, would then forget that their ancestors had been different, in the supreme consciousness that now they had a common country, and before all else were all of them Americans.

That time had come. That consciousness had for fifteen years been quickening in the people, since the “Writs of Assistance ” had been applied for and granted, in 1761, when Otis, resigning his honorable position under the crown, had flung himself against the alarming innovation with an eloquence as blasting as the stroke of the lightning which in the end destroyed his life. With every fresh invasion by England of their popular liberties, with every act which threatened such invasion by providing opportunity and the instruments for it, the sense of a common privilege and right, of a common inheritance in the country they were fashioning out of the forest, of a common place in the history of the world, had been increased among the colonists. They were plain people, with no strong tendencies to the ideal. They wanted only a chance for free growth; but they must have that, and have it together, though the continent cracked. The diamond is formed, it has sometimes been supposed, under a swift enormous pressure, of masses meeting, and forcing the carbon into a crystal. The ultimate spirit of the American colonists was formed in like manner; the weight of a rocky continent beneath, the weight of au oppression only intolerable because undefined pressing on it from above. But now that spirit, of inestimable price, reflecting light from every angle, and harder to be broken than anything material, was suddenly shown in acts and declarations of conventions and assemblies from the Penobscot to the St. Mary’s.

Any commanding public temper, once established in a people grows bolder, of course, more inquisitive and incentive, more sensible of its rights, more determined on its future, as it comes more frequently into exercise. This in the colonies lately had had been the most significant of all its expressions, up to that point, in the resolves of a popular ass3mblies that the time had come for a final separation from the kingdom of Great Britain. The eminent Congress of two years before had given it powerful reinforcement . Now, at last, it entered the representative American assembly, and claimed from that the ultimate word. It found what it sought. The Declaration was only the voice of that supreme, impersonal force, that will of communities, that universal soul of the State.

The vote of the colony then thinly covering a part of the spaces not yet wholly occupied by this great State, was not, indeed, at once formally given for such an instrument. It was wisely dejayed, under the judicious counsel of Jay, till a provincial Congress could assemble, specially called, and formally authorized, to pronounce the deliberate resolve of the colony; and so it happened that only twelve colonies voted at first for the great Declaration, and that New York was not joined to the number till five days later. But Jay knew, and all knew, that numerous, wealthy, eminent in character, high in position as were those here and elsewhere in the country—in Massachusetts, in Virginia, and in the Carolinas—who were by no means yet prepared to sever their connection with Great Britain, the general and governing mind of the people was fixed upon this, with a decision which nothing could change, with a tenacity which nothing could break. The forces tending to that result had wrought to their development with a steadiness and strength which the stubbornest resistance had hardly delayed. The spirit which now shook light and impulse over the land was recent in its precise demand, but as old in its birth as the first Christian settlements; and it was that spirit—not of one, nor of fifty, not of all the individuals in all the conventions, but the vaster spirit which lay behind—which put itself on sudden record through the prompt and accurate pen of Jefferson.

He was himself in full sympathy with it, and only by reason of that sympathy could give it such consummate expression Not out of books, legal researches, historical inquiry, the careful and various studies of language, came that document; but out of repeated public debate, out of manifold personal and private discussion, out of his clear sympathetic observation of the changing feeling and thought of men, out of that exquisite personal sensibility to vague and impalpable popular impulses which was in him innately combined with artistic taste, an idea nature, and rare power of philosophical thought. The voice of the cottage as well as the college, of the church as well as the legislative assembly, was in the paper. It echoed the talk of the farmer in home-spun, as well as the classic eloquence of Lee, or the terrible tones of Patrick Henry. It gushed at last from the pen of its writer, like the fountain from the roots of Lebanon, a brimming river when it issues from the rock ; but it was because its sources had been supplied, its fullness filled, by unseen springs; by the rivulets winding far up among the cedars, and percolating through hidden crevices in the stone; by melting snows, whose white sparkle seemed still on the stream; by fierce rains, with which the basins above were drenched ; by even the dews, silent and wide, which had lain in stillness all night upon the hill.

The Platonic idea of the development of the State was thus realized here; first Ethics, then Politics. A public opinion, energetic and dominant took its place from the start as the chief instrument of the new civilization. No dashing maneuver of skillful commanders, no sudden burst of popular passion, was in the Declaration; but the vast mystery of a supreme and imperative public life, at once diffused and intense—behind all persons, before all plans, beneath which individual wills are exalted, at whose touch the personal mind is inspired, and under whose transcendent impulse the smallest instrument becomes of a terrific force. That made the Declaration; and that makes it now, in its modest brevity, take its place with Magna Charta and the Petition of Right, as full as they of vital force, and destined to a parallel permanence.

Because this intense common life of a determined and manifold People was not behind them, other documents, in form similar to this, and in polish and cadence of balanced phrase perhaps its superiors, have had no hold like that which it keeps on the memory of men. What papers have challenged the attention of mankind within the century, in the stately Spanish tongue, in Mexico, New Granada, Venezuela, Bolivia, or the Argentine Republic, which the world at large has now quite forgotten! How the resonant proclamations of German or of French Republicans, of Hungarian or Spanish revolutionists and patriots, have vanished as sound absorbed in the air! Eloquent, persuasive, just, as they were, with a vigor of thought, a fervor of passion, a fine completeness and symmetry of expression, in which they could hardly be surpassed, they have now only a literary value. They never became great general forces. They were weak, because they were personal; and history is too crowded, civilization is too vast, to take much impression from occasional documents. Only then is a paper of secular force, or long remembered, when behind it is the ubiquitous energy of the popular will, rolling through its words in vast diapason, and charging its clauses with tones of thunder.

Because such an energy was behind it, our Declaration had its majestic place and meaning; and they who adopted it saw nowhere else

So rich advantage of a promised glory,
An smiled upon the forehead of their action.

Because of that, we read it still, and look to have it as audible as now, among the dissonant voices of the world, when other generations, in long succession, have come and gone!

But further, too, it must be observed that this paper, adopted a hundred years since, was not merely the declaration of a People, as distinguished from eminent and cultured individuals—a confession before the world of the public State-faith, rather than a political thesis—but it was also the declaration of a People which claimed for its own a great inheritance of equitable laws, and of practical liberty, and which now was intent to enlarge and enrich that. It had roots in the past, and a long genealogy; and so it had a vitality inherent, and an immense energy.

They who framed it went back, indeed, to first principles. There was something philosophic and ideal in their scheme, as always there is when the general mind is deeply stirred. It was not superficial. Yet they were not undertaking to establish new theories, or to build their state upon artificial plans and abstract speculations. They were simply evolving out of the past what therein bad been latent; were liberating into free exhibition and unceasing activity, a vital force older than the history of their colonization, and wide as the lands from which they came. They had the sweep of vast impulses behind them. The slow tendencies of centuries came to sudden consummation in their Declaration; and the force of its impact upon the affairs and the mind of the world was not to be measured by its contents alone, but by the relation in which these stood to all the vehement discussion and struggle of which it was the latest outcome.

This ought to be, always, distinctly observed.

The tendency is strong, and has been general, among those who have introduced great changes in the government of states, to follow some plan of political, perhaps of social innovation, which enlists their judgment, excites their fancy, and to make a comely theoretic habitation for the national household, rather than to build on the old foundations—expanding the walls, lif ting the height, enlarging the doorways, enlightening with new windows the halls, but still keeping the strength and renewing the age of an old familiar and venerated structure. You remember how in France, in 1789, and the following years, the schemes of those whom Napoleon called the “ideologists” succeeded each other, no one of them gaining a permanent supremacy, though each included important elements, till the armed consulate of 1799 swept them all into the air, and put in place of them one masterful genius and ambitious will. You remember how in Spain, in 1812, the new Constitution proclaimed by the Cortes was thought to inaugurate with beneficent provisions a wholly new era of development and progress; yet how the history of the splendid peninsula, from that day to this, has been but the record of a struggle to the death between the Old and the New, the contest as desperate, it would seem, in our time as it was at the first.

It must be so, always, when a preceding state of society and government, which has got itself established through many generations, is suddenly superseded by a different fabric, however more evidently conformed to right reason. The principle is not so strong as the prejudice. Habit masters invention. The new and theoretic shivers its force on the obstinate coherence of the old and the established. The modern structure fails and is replaced, while the grim feudal keep, though scarred and weather-worn, the very cement seeming gone from its walls, still scowls defiance at the red right-hand of the lightning itself.

It was no such rash speculative change which here was attempted. The People whose deputies framed our Declaration were largely themselves descendants of Englishmen; and those who were not, had lived long enough under English institutions to be impressed with their tendency and spirit. It was therefore only natural that even when adopting that ultimate measure which severed them from the British crown, they should retain all that had been gained in the mother-land through centuries of endurance and strife. They left nothing that was good; they abolished the bad, added the needful, and developed into a rule for the continent the splendid precedents of great former occasions. They shared still the boast of Englishmen that their constitution “has no single date from which its duration is to be reckoned,” and that “the origin of the English law is as undiscoverable as that of the Nile.” They went back themselves, for the origin of their liberties, to the most ancient muniments of English freedom. Jefferson had affirmed, in 1774, that a primitive charter of American Independence lay in the fact that as the Saxons had left their native wilds in the North of Europe, and had occupied Britain—the country which they left asserting over them no further control, nor any dependence of them upon it—so the Englishmen coming hither had formed, by that act, another state, over which Parliament had no rights, in which its laws were void till accepted.(8)

But while seeking for their liberties so archaic a basis, neither he nor his colleagues were in the least careless of what subsequent times had done to complete them. There was not one element of popular right, which had been wrested from crown and noble in any age, which they did not keep; not an equitable rule, for the transfer or the division of property, for the protection of personal rights, or for the detection and punishment of crime, which was not precious in their eyes. Even Chancery jurisdiction they widely retained, with the distinct tribunals, derived from the ecclesiastical courts, for probate of wills; and English technicalities were maintained in their courts, almost as if they were sacred things. Especially that equality of civil rights among all commoners, which II all am declares the most prominent characteristic of the English Constitution— the source of its permanence, its improvement, and its vigor— they perfectly preserved; they only more sharply affirmatively declared it. Indeed, in renouncing their allegiance to the king, and putting the United Colonies in his place, they felt themselves acting in intimate harmony with the spirit and drift of the ancient constitution. The Executive here was.to be elective, not hereditary, to be limited and not permanent in the term of his functions; and no established peerage should exist. But each State retained its governor, its legislature, generally in two houses, its ancient statute and common law; and if they had been challenged for English authority for their attitude toward ;the crown, they might have replied in the words of Bracton, the Lord Chief-Justice five hundred years before, under the reign of Henry the Third, that ” the law makes the king;” “there is no king, where will, and not law, bears rule;” “if the king were without a bridle, that is the law, they ought to put a bridle upon him.”(9) They might have replied in the words of Fox, speaking in Parliament, in daring defiance of the temper of the House, but with many supporting him, when he said that in declaring Independence, they “had done no more than the English had done against James the Second.”(10)

They had done no more; though they had not elected another king in place of him whom they renounced. They had taken no step so far in advance of the then existing English Constitution as those which the Parliament of 1640 took in advance of the previous Parliaments which Charles had dissolved. If there was a right more rooted than another in that Constitution, it was the right of the people which was taxed to have its vote in the taxing legislature. If there was anything more accordant than another with its historic temper and tenor, it was that the authority of the king was determined when his rule became tyrannous. Jefferson had but perfectly expressed the doctrine of the lovers of freedom in England for many generations, when he said in his Summary view of the Rights of America, in 1774, that “the monarch is no more than the chief officer of the people, appointed by the laws, and circumscribed with definite powers, to assist in working the great machine of government, erected for their use, and consequently subject to their superintendence;” that “kings are the servants, not the proprietors of the people;” and that a nation claims its rights, “as derived from the laws of nature not as the gift of their chief magistrate.” (11)

That had been the spirit, if not as yet the formulated doctrine, of Raleigh, Hampden, Russell, Sydney—of all the great leaders of liberty in England. Milton had declared it, in a prose as majestic as any passage of the Paradise Lost. The Commonwealth had been built on it; and the whole Revolution of 1688. And they who now framed it into their permanent organic law, and made it supreme in the country they were shaping, were in harmony with the noblest inspirations of the past. They were not innovating with a rash recklessness. They were simply accepting and re-affirming what they had learned from luminous events and illustrious men. So their work had a dignity, a strength, and a permanence which can never belong to mere fresh speculation. It interlocked with that of multitudes going before. It derived a virtue from every field of struggle in England; from every scaffold, hallowed by free and consecrated blood; from every hour of great debate. It was only the complete development into law, for a separated people, of that august ancestral liberty, the germs of which had preceded the Heptarchy, the gradual definition and establishment of which had been the glory of English history. A thousand years brooded over the room where they asserted hereditary rights. Its walls showed neither portraits nor mottoes; but the Kaiser-saal at Frankfort was not hung around with such recollections. No titles were worn by those plain men; but there had not been one knightly soldier, or one patriotic and prescient statesman, standing for liberty in the splendid centuries of its English growth, who did not touch them with unseen accolade, and bid them be faithful. The paper which they adopted, fresh from the pen of its young author, and written on his hired pine table, was already in essential life, of a venerable age; and it took immense impulse, it derived an instant and vast authority, from its relation to that undying past in which they too had grand inheritance, and from which their public life had come.

Englishmen themselves now recognize this, and often are proud of it. The distinguished representative of Great Britain at Washington may think his government, as no doubt he does, superior to ours; but his clear eye cannot fail to see that English liberty was the parent of ours, and that the new and broader continent here opened before it, suggested that expansion of it which we celebrate to-day. His ancestors, like ours, helped to build the Republic; and its faithfulness to the past, amid all reformations, was one great secret of its earliest triumph, has been one source, from that day to this, of its enduring and prosperous strength.

The Congress, and the People behind it, asserted for themselves hereditary liberties, and hazarded everything in the purpose to complete them. But they also affirmed, with emphasis and effect, another right, more general than this, which made their action significant and important to other peoples, which made it, indeed, a signal to the nations of the right of each to assert for itself the just prerogative of forming its government, electing its rulers, ordaining its laws, as might to it seem most expedient. Hear again the immortal words: “We hold these truths to be self-evident; * * that to secure these [unalienable] rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed; that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to altar or to abolish it, and to institute a new government, laying its foundations in such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.”

This is what the party of Bentham called “the assumption of natural rights, claimed without the slightest evidence of their existence, and supported by vague and declamatory generalities.” This is what we receive as the decisive and noble declaration, spoken with the simplicity of a perfect conviction, of a natural right as patent as the continent; a declaration which challenged at once the attention of mankind, and which is now practically assumed as a premise in international relations and public law.

Of course it was not a new discovery. It was old as the earliest of political philosophers; as old, indeed, as the earliest communities, which, becoming established in particular locations, had there developed their own institutions, and repelled with vehemence the assaults that would change them. But in the growth of political societies, and the vast expansion of imperial states, by the conquest of those adjacent and weaker, this right, so easily recognized at the outset, so germane to the instincts, so level with the reason, of every community, had widely passed out of men’s thoughts; and the power of a conquering state to change the institutions and laws of a people, or impose on it new ones,—the power of a parent state to shape the forms and prescribe the rules of the colonies which went from it,—had been so long and abundantly exercised, that the very right of the people, thus conquered or colonial, to consult its own interests in the frame of its government, had been almost forgotten.

It might be a high speculation of scholars, or a charming dream of political enthusiasts. But it was not a maxim for the practical statesman; and whatever its correctness as an ideal principle, it was vain to expect to see it established in a world full of kings who claimed, each for himself, an authority from God, and full of states intent on grasping and governing by their law adjacent domains. The revolt of the Netherlands against Spanish domination had been the one instance in modern history in which the inherent right of a People to suit itself in the frame of its government had been proclaimed, and then maintained; and that had been at the outset a paroxysmal revolt, against tyranny so crushing, and cruelties so savage, that they took it out of the line of examples. The Dutch Republic was almost as exceptional, through the fierce wickedness which had crowded it into being, as was Switzerland itself, on the Alpine heights. For an ordinary state to claim self-regulation, and found its government on a Plebiscit, was to contradict precedent, and to set at defiance European tradition.

Our fathers, however, in a somewhat vague way, had held from the start that they had right to an autonomy; and that act of Parliament, if not appointments of the crown, took proper effect upon these shores only by reason of their assent. Their characters were held to confirm this doctrine. The conviction, it first practical and instinctive, rather than theoretic, had grown with their growth, and had been intensified into positive affirmation and public exhibition as the British rule impinged more sharply on their interests and their hopes. It had finally become the general and decisive conviction of the colonies. It had spoken already in armed resistance to the troops of the King. It had been articulated, with gathering emphasis, in many resolves,of assemblies and conventions. It was now, finally, most energetically, set forth to the world in the great Declaration; and in that utterance, made general, not particular, and founding the rights of the people in this country on principles as wide as humanity itself, there lay an appeal to every nation:—an appeal whose words took unparalleled force, were illuminated and made rubrical, in the fire and blood of the following war.

When the Emperor Ferdinand visited Innsbruck, that beautiful town of the Austrian Tyrol, in 1838, it is said that the inhabitants wrote his name in immense bonfires, along the sides of the precipitous hills which shelter the town Over a space of four or five miles extended that colossal illumination, till the heavens seemed on fire in the far-reflected upstreaming glow. The right of a people, separated from others, to its own institutions—our fathers wrote this in lines so vivid and so large that the whole world could see them ; and they followed that writing with the consenting thunders of so many cannon that even the lands across the Atlantic were shaken and filled with the long reverberation.

The doctrine had, of course, in every nation, its two-fold internal application, as well as its front against external powers. On the one hand it swept with destroying force against the nation, so long maintained, of the right of certain families in the world, called Hapsburg, Bourbon, Stuart, or whatever, to govern the rest; and wherever it was received it made the imagined divine right of kings an obsolete and contemptible fiction. On the other hand, it smote with equal energy against the pretensions of any minority within the state—whether banded together by the ties of descent, or of neighborhood in location, or of common opinion, or supposed common interest —to govern the rest; or even to impair the established and paramount government of the rest by separating themselves organically from it.

It was never the doctrine of the fathers that the people of Kent, Cornwall, or Lincoln, might sever themselves from the rest of England, and, while they had their voice and vote in the public councils, might assert the right to govern the whole, under threat of withdrawal if their minor vote were not suffered to control . They were not seeking to initiate anarchy, and to make it thenceforth respectable in the world by support of their suffrages. They recognized the fact that the state exists to meet permanent needs, is the ordinance of God as well as the family; and that He has determined the bounds of men’s habitation, by rivers, seas, and mountain chains, shaping countries as well as continents into physical coherence, while giving one man his birth on the north of the Pyrenees, another on the south, one on the terraced banks of the Rhine, another in English meadow or upland. They saw that a common and fixed habitation, in a country thus physically defined, especially when combined with community of descent, of permanent public interest, and of the language on which thought is interchanged— that these make a People; and such a People, as a true and abiding body-politic, they affirmed had right to shape its government, forbidding others to inter-meddle.

But it must be the general mind of the People which determined the questions thus involved; not a dictating class within the state, whether known as peers or associated commoners, whether scattered widely, as one among several political parties, or grouped together in some one section, and having a special interest to encourage. The decision of the general public mind, as deliberately reached, and authentically declared, that must be the end of debate; and the right of resistance, or the right of division, after that, if such right exist, it is not to be vindicated from their Declaration. Any one who thought such government by the whole intolerable to him was always at liberty to expatriate himself, and find elsewhere such other institutions as he might prefer. But he could not tarry, and still not submit. He was not a monarch, without the crown, before whose contrary judgment and will the public councils must be dumb. While dwelling in the land, and having the same opportunity with others to seek the amendment of what he disapproved, the will of the whole was binding upon him and that obligation he could not vacate by refusing to accept it. If one could not, neither could ten, nor a hundred, nor a million, who still remained a minority of the whole.

To allow such a right would have been to make government transparently impossible. Not separate sections only, but counties, townships, school districts, neighborhoods, must have the same right; and each individual, with his own will for his final law, must be the complete ultimate State.

It was no such disastrous folly which the fathers of our Republic affirmed. They ruled out kings, princes, peers, from any control over the People; and they did not give to a transient minority, wherever it might appear, on whatever question, a greater privilege, because less defined, than that which they jealously withheld from these classes. Such a tyranny of irresponsible occasional minorities would have seemed to them only more intolerable than that of classes, organized, permanent, and limited by law. And when it was affirmed by some, and silently feared by many others, that in our late immense civil war the multitudes who adhered to the old Constitution had forgotten or discarded the principles of the earlier Declaration, those assertions and fears were alike without reason. The People which adopted that Declaration, when distributed into colonies, was the People which afterward, when compacted into states, established the Confederation of 1781—imperfect enough, but whose abiding renown it is that under it the war w as ended It was the same People which subsequently framed the supreme Constitution. “We, the people of the United States,” do ordain and establish the following Constitution,—so runs the majestic and vital instrument. It contains provisions for its own emendation. When the people will, they may set it aside, and put in place of it one wholly different; and no other nation can intervene. But while it continues, it, and the laws made normally under it, are not subject to resistance by a portion of the people, conspiring to direct or limit the rest. And whensoever any pretension like this shall appear, if ever again it does appear, it will undoubtedly as instantly appear that, even as in the past so in the future, the people whose our government is, and whose complete and magnificent domain God has marked out for it, will subdue resistance, compel submission, forbid secession, though it cost again, as it cost before, four years of war, with treasure uncounted and inestimable life.

The right of a People upon its own territory, as equally against any classes within it or any external powers,this is the doctrine of our Declaration. We know how it here has been applied, and how settled it is upon these shores for the time to come We know, too, something of what impression it instantly made upon the minds of other peoples, and how they sprang to greet and accept it. In the fine image of Bancroft, “the astonished nations, as they read that all men are created equal, started out of their lethargy, like those who have been exiles from childhood, when they suddenly hear the dimly-remembered accents of their mother-tongue.”(12)

The theory of scholars had now become the maxim of a State. The diffused intellectual nebulous light had got itself concentrated into an orb; and the radiance of it, penetrating and hot, shone afar. You know how France responded to it; with passionate speed seeking to be rid of the terrific establishments in church and state which had nearly crushed the life of the people, and with a beautiful though credulous unreason trying to lift, by the grasp of the law, into intelligence and political capacity the masses whose training for thirteen centuries had been despotic. No operation of natural law was any more certain than the failure of that too daring experiment. But the very failure involved progress from it; involved, undoubtedly, that ultimate success which it was vain to try to extemporize. Certainly the other European powers will not again intervene, as they did, to restore a despotism which France has abjured, and with foreign bayonets to uphold institutions which it does not desire. Italy, Spain, Germany, England—they are not Republican in the form of their government, nor as yet democratic in the distribution of power. But each of them is as full of this organific, self-demonstrating doctrine, as is our own land; and England would send no troops to Canada to compel its submission if it should decide to set up for itself. Neither Italy nor Spain would maintain a monarchy a moment longer than the general mind of the country preferred it. Germany would be fused in the fire of one passion if any foreign nation whatever should assume to dictate the smallest change in one of its laws. The doctrine of the proper prerogative of kings, derived from God, which in the last century was more common in Europe than the doctrine of the centrality of the sun in our planetary system, is now as obsolete among the intelligent as are the epicycles of Ptolemy. Every government expects to stand henceforth by assent of the governed, and by no other claim of right. It is strong by beneficence, not by tradition; and at the height of its military successes it circulates appeals, and canvasses for ballots. Revolution is carefully sought to be averted, by timely and tender amelioration of the laws. The most progressive and liberal states are most evidently secure; while those which stand, like old olive-trees at Tivoli, with feeble arms supported on pillars, and hollow trunks filled up with stone, are palpably only tempting the blast. An alliance of sovereigns, like that called the Holy, for reconstructing the map of Europe, and parceling out the passive peoples among separate governments, would to-day be no more impossible than would Charlemagne’s plan for reconstructing the empire of the West. Even Murad, Sultan of Turkey, now takes the place of Abdul the deposed, “by the grace of God, and the will of the people;” and that accomplished and illustrious Prince, whose empire under the Southern Cross rivals our own in its extent, and most nearly approaches it on this hemisphere in stability of institutions and in practical freedom, has his surest title to the throne which he honors, in his wise liberality, and his faithful endeavor for the good of his people. As long as in this he continues, as now, a recognized leader among the monarchs—ready to take and seek suggestions from even a democratic Republic—bis throne will be steadfast as the water-sheds of Brazil; and while his successors maintain his spirit, no domestic insurrection will test the question whether they retain that celerity in movement with which Dom Pedro has astonished Americans.

It is no more possible to reverse this tendency toward popular sovereignty, and to substitute for it the right of families, classes, minorities, or of intervening foreign states, than it is to arrest the motion of the earth, and make it swing the other way in its annual orbit. In this, at least, our fathers’ Declaration has made its impression on the history of mankind.

It was the act of a People, and not of persons, except as these represented and led that. It was the act of a People, not starting out on new theories of government, so much as developing into forms of law and practical force a great and gradual inheritance of freedom. It was the act of a People, declaring for others, as for itself, the right of each to its own form of government without interference from other nations, without restraint by privileged classes.

It only remains, then, to ask the question how far it has contributed to the peace, the advancement, and the permanent, welfare, of the People by which it was set forth; of other nations which it has affected . And to ask this question is almost to answer it. The answer is as evident as the sun in the heavens.

It certainly cannot be affirmed that we in America, any more than persons or peoples elsewhere, have reached as yet the ideal state, of private liberty combined with a perfect public order, or of culture complete, and a supreme character. The political world, as well as the religious, since Christ was on earth, looks forward, not backward, for its millennium. That Golden Age is still to come which is to shine in the perfect splendor reflected from Him who is ascended; and no prophecy tells us how long before the advancing race shall reach and cross its glowing marge, or what long effort, or what tumults of battle are still to precede.

In this country, too, there have been immense special impediments to hinder wide popular progress in things which are highest. Our people have had a continent to subdue. They have been, from the start, in constant migration. Westward, from the counties of the Hudson and the Mohawk, around the lakes, over the prairies, across the great river—westward still, over alkali plains, across terrible canons, up gorges of the mountains where hardly the wild goat could find footing— westward always, till the Golden Gate opened out on the sea which has been made ten thousand miles wide, as if nothing less could stop the march—this has been the popular movement, from almost the day of the great Declaration. To-morrow’s tents have been pitched in new fields; and last year’s houses await new possessors.

With such constant change, such wide dislocation of the mass of the people from early and settled home-associations, and with the incessant occupation of the thoughts by the great physical problems presented—not so much by any struggle for existence, as by harvests for which the prairies waited, by mills for which the rivers clamored, by the coal and the gold which offered themselves to the grasp of the miner—it would not have been strange if a great and dangerous decadence had occurred in that domestic and private virtue of which Home is the nursery, in that generous and reverent public spirit which is but the effluence of its combined rays. It would have been wholly too much to expect that under such influences the highest progress should have been realized, in speculative thought, in artistic culture, or in the researches of pure science.

Accordingly, we find that in these departments not enough has been accomplished to make our progress signal in them, though here and there the eminent souls “that are like stars and dwell apart” have illumined themes highest with their high interpretation. But History has been cultivated among us, with an enthusiasm, to .in extent, hardly, I think, to have been anticipated among a people so recent and expectant; and Prescott, Motley, Irving, Ticknor, with him upon whose splendid page all American history has been amply illustrated, are known as familiarly and honored as highly in Europe as here. We have had as well distinguished poets, and have them now ; to whom the nation has been responsive ; who have not only sung themselves, but through whom the noblest poems of the Old World have come into the English tongue, rendered in fit and perfect music, and some of whose minds, blossoming long ago in the solemn or beautiful fancies of youth, with perennial energy still ripen to new fruit as they near or cross their four-score years. In Medicine, and Law, as well as in Theology, in Fiction, Biography, and the vivid Narrative of exploration and discovery, the people whose birth-day we commemorate has added something to the possession of men. Its sculptors and painters have won high places in the brilliant realm of modern art. Publicists like Wheaton, jurists like Kent, have gained a celebrity reflecting honor on the land; and if no orator, so vast in knowledge, so profound and discursive in philosophical thought, so affluent in imagery, and so glorious in diction, as Edmund Burke, has yet appeared, we must remember that centuries were needed to produce him elsewhere, and that any of the great Parliamentary debaters, aside from him, have been matched or surpassed in the hearing of those who have hung with rapt sympathetic attention on the lips of Clay, or of Rufus Choate, or have felt themselves listening to the mightiest mind which ever touched theirs when they stood beneath the imperial voice fn which Webster spoke.

In applied science there has been much done in the country, for which the world admits itself our grateful debtor. I need not multiply illustrations of this, from locomotives, printing presses, sewing machines, revolvers, steam-reapers, bank-locks. One instance suffices, most signal of all.

When Morse, from Washington, thirty-two years ago, sent over the wires his word to Baltimore, “What hath God wrought,” he had given to all the nations of mankind an instrument the most sensitive, expansive, quickening, which the world yet possesses. He had bound the earth in electric network.

England touches India to-day, and France Algeria, while we are in contact with all the continents, upon those scarcely perceptible nerves. The great strategist, like Von Moltke, with these in his hands, from the silence of his office directs campaigns, dictates marches, wins victories; the statesman in the cabinet inspires and regulates the distant diplomacies ; while the traveler in any port or mart is by the same marvel of mechanism in instant communication with all centres of commerce. It is certainly not too much to say that no other invention of the world in this century has so richly deserved the medals, crosses, and diamond decorations, the applause of senates, the gifts of kings, which were showered upon its author, as did this invention, which finally taught and utilized the lightnings whose nature a signer of the great Declaration had made apparent.

But after all it is not so much in special inventions, or in eminent attainments made by individuals, that we are to find the answer to the question, “What did that day a hundred years since accomplish for us?” Still less is it found in the progress we have made in outward wealth and material success. This might have been made, approximately at least, if the British supremacy had here continued. The prairies would have been as productive as now, the mines of copper and silver and gold as rich and extensive, the coal-beds as vast, and the cotton-fields as fertile, if we had been born the subjects of the Georges, or of Victoria. Steam would have kept its propulsive force, and sea and land have been theatres of its triumph. The river would have been as smooth a highway for the commerce which seeks it; and the leap of every mountain stream would have given as swift and constant a push to the wheels that set spindles and saws in motion. Electricity itself would have lost no property, and might have become as completely as now the fire-winged messenger of the thought of mankind .

But what we have now, and should not have had except for that paper which the Congress adopted, is the general and increasing popular advancement in knowledge, vigor, as I believe in moral culture, of which our country has been the arena, and m which lies its hope for the future. The independence of the nation has reacted, with sympathetic force, on the personal life which the nation includes. It has made men more resolute, aspiring, confident, and more susceptible to whatever exalts. The doctrine that all by creation are equal,—not in respect of physical force or of mental endowment, of means for culture or inherited privilege, but in respect of immortal faculty, of duty to each other, of right to protection and to personal development, —this has given manliness to the poor, enterprise to the weak, a kindling hope to the most obscure. It has made the individuals of whom the nation is composed more alive to the forces which educate and exalt.

There has been incessant motive, too, for the wide and constant employment of these forces. It has been felt that, as the People is sovereign here, that People must be trained in mind and spirit for its august and sovereign function. The establishment of common-schools, for a needful primary secular training, has been an instinct of Society, only recognized and repeated in provisions of statutes. The establishment of higher schools, classical and general, of colleges, scientific and professional seminaries, has been as well the impulse of the nation, and the furtherance of them a care of governments. The immense expansion of the press in this country has been based fundamentally upon the same impulse, and has wrought with beneficent general force in the same direction. Religious instruction has gone as widely as this distribution of secular knowledge.

It used to be thought that a Church dissevered from the State must be feeble. Wanting wealth of endowments and dignity of titles—its clergy entitled to no place among the peers, its revenues assured by no legal enactments—-it must remain obscure and poor; while the absence of any external limitations, of parliamentary statutes and a legal creed, must leave it liable to endless division, and tend to its speedy disintegration into sects and schisms. It seemed as hopeless to look for strength, wealth, beneficence, for extensive educational and missionary work, to such churches as these, as to look for aggressive military organization to a convention of farmers, or for the volume and thunder of Niagara to a thousand sinking and separate rills.

But the work which was given to be done in this country was so great and momentous; and has been so constant, that matching itself against that work, the Church, under whatever name, has realized a strength, and developed an activity, wholly fresh in the world in modern times. It has not been antagonized by that instinct of liberty which always awakens against its work where religion is required by law. It has seized the opportunity. Its ministers and members have had their own standards, leaders, laws, and sometimes have quarreled, fiercely enough, as to which were the better. But in the work which was set them to do, to give to the sovereign American people the knowledge of God in the Gospel of His Son, their only strife has been one of emulation—to go the furthest, to give the most, and to bless most largely the land and its future.

The spiritual incentive has of course been supreme; but patriotism has added its impulse to the work. It has been felt that Christianity is the basis of Republican empire, its bond of cohesion, its life-giving law; that the manuscript copies of the Gospels, sent by Gregory to Augustine at Canterbury, and still preserved on sixth century parchments at Oxford and Cambridge—more than Magna Charta itself, these are the roots of English liberty; that Magna Charta, and the Petition of Right, with our completing Declaration, were possible only because these had been before them. And so on in the work of keeping Christianity prevalent in the land, all earnest churches have eagerly striven. Their preachers have been heard where the pioneer’s fire scarcely was kindled. Their schools have been gathered in the temporary camp, not less than in the hamlet or town. They have sent their books with lavish distribution, they have scattered their Bibles like leaves of autumn, where settlements hardly were more than prophesied. In all languages of the land they have told the old story of the Law and the Cross, a present Redemption, and a coming Tribunal The highest truths, most solemn and inspiring, have been the truths most constantly in hand. It has been felt that, in the highest sense, a muscular Christianity was indispensable where men lifted up axes upon the thick trees . The delicate speculations of the closet and the schools were too dainty for the work; and the old confessions of Councils and Reformers, whose undecaying and sovereign energy no use exhausts, have been those always most familiar, where the trapper on his stream, or the miner in his gulch has found priest or minister on his track.

Of course not all the work has been fruitful. Not all God’s acorns come to oaks, but here and there one. Not all the seeds of flowers germinate, but enough to make some radiant gardens. And out of all this work and gift, has come a mental and moral training, to the nation at large, such as it certainly would not have had except for this effort, the effort for which would not have been made, on a scale so immense, except for this incessant aim to fit the nation for its great experiment of self-regulation. The Declaration of Independence has been the great charter of Public Education; has given impulse and scope to this prodigious Missionary work.

The result of the whole is evident enough. I am not here as the eulogist of our People, beyond what facts justify. I admit, with regret, that American manners sometimes are coarse, and American culture often very imperfect; that the noblest examples of consummate training imply a leisure which we have not had, and are perhaps most easily produced where social advantages are more permanent than here, and the law heredity has a wider recognition. We all know, too well, how much of even vice and shame there has been, and is, in our national life; how sluggish the public conscience has been before sharpest appeals; how corruption has entered high places in the government, and the blister of its touch has been upon laws, as well as on the acts of prominent officials. And we know the reckless greed and ambition, the fierce party spirit, the personal wrangles and jealous animosities, with which our Congress has been often dishonored, at which the nation— sadder still—has sometimes laughed, in idiotic unreason.

But knowing all this, and with the impression of it full on our thoughts, we may exult in the real, steady, and prophesying growth of a better spirit, toward dominance in the land. I scout the thought that we as a people are worse than our fathers! John Adams, at the head of the War Department, in 1776, wrote bitter laments of the corruption which existed in even that infant age of the Republic, and of the spirit of venality, rapacious and insatiable, which was then the most alarming enemy of America. He declared himself ashamed of the age which he lived in! In Jefferson’s day, all Federalists expected the universal dominion of French infidelity. In Jackson’s day, all Whigs thought the country gone to ruin already, as if Mr. Biddle had had the entire public hope locked up in the vaults of his terminated bank. In Polk’s day, the excitements of the Mexican War gave life and germination to many seeds of rascality. There has never been a time—not here alone, in any country—when the fierce light of incessant inquiry blazing on men in public life, would not have revealed forces of evil like those we have seen, or when the condemnation which followed the discovery would have been sharper. And it is among my deepest convictions that, with all which has happened to debase and debauch it, the nation at large was never before more mentally vigorous or morally sound.

Gentlemen: The demonstration is around us!

This city, if anyplace on the continent, should have been the one where a reckless wickedness should have had sure prevalence, and reforming virtue the least chance of success. Starting in 1790 with a white population of less than thirty thousand —growing steadily for forty years, till that population had multiplied six-fold—taking into itself, from that time on, such multitudes of emigrants from all parts of the earth that the dictionaries of the languages spoken in its streets would make a library—all forms of luxury coming with wealth, and all means and facilities for every vice—the primary elections being the seed-bed out of which springs its choice of rulers, with the influence which it sends to the public councils—its citizens so absorbed in their pursuits that oftentimes, for years together, large numbers of them have left its affairs in hands the most of all unsuited to so supreme and delicate a trust—it might well have been expected that while its docks were echoing with a commerce which encompassed the globe, while its streets were thronged with the eminent and the gay from all parts of the land, while its homes had in them uncounted thousands of noble men and cultured women, while its stately squares swept out year by year across new spaces, while it founded great institutions of beneficence, and shot new spires upward toward heaven, and turned the rocky waste to a pleasure ground famous in the earth, its government would decay, and its recklessness of moral ideas, if not as well of political principles would become apparent .

Men have prophesied this, from the outset till now. The fear of it began with the first great advance of the wealth, population, and fame of the city; and there have not been wanting facts in its history which served to renew, if not to justify the fear.

But when the war of 1861 broke on the land, and shadowed every home within it, this city,—which had voted by immense majorities against the existing administration, and which was linked by unnumbered ties with the vast communities then rushing to assail it,—flung out its banners from window and spire, from City Hall and newspaper office, and poured its wealth and life into the service of sustaining the Government, with a swiftness and vehement energy that were never surpassed. When, afterward, greedy and treacherous men, capable and shrewd, deceiving the unwary, hiring the skillful, and moulding the very law to their uses, had concentrated in their hands the government of the city, and had bound it in seemingly invincible chains, while they plundered its treasury,—it rose upon them, when advised of the facts, as Samson rose upon the Philistines; and the two new cords that were upon his hands no more suddenly became as flax that was burnt than did those manacles imposed upon the city by the craft of the Ring.

Its leaders of opinion to-day are the men—like him who presides in our assembly—whom virtue exalts, and character crowns. It rejoices in a Chief Magistrate as upright and intrepid in a virtuous cause, as any of those whom he succeeds. It is part of a State whose present position, in laws, and officers, and the spirit of its people, does no discredit to the noblest of its memories. And from these heights between the rivers, looking over the land, looking out on the earth to which its daily embassies go, it sees nowhere beneath the sun a city more ample in its moral securities, a city more dear to those who possess it, a city more splendid in promise and in hope.

What is true of the city is true, in effect, of all the land. Two things, at least, have been established by our national history, the impression of which the world will not lose. The one is, that institutions like ours, when sustained by a prevalent moral life throughout the nation, are naturally permanent . The other is, that they tend to peaceful relations with other states. They do this in fulfillment of an organic tendency, and not through any accident of location. The same tendency will inhere in them, wheresoever established.

In this age of the world, and in all the states which Christianity quickens, the allowance of free movement to the popular mind is essential to the stability of public institutions. There may be restraint enough to guide, and keep such movement from premature exhibition. But there cannot be force enough used to resist it, and to reverse its gathering current. If there is, the government is swiftly overthrown, as in France so often, or is left on one side, as Austria has been by the advancing German people; like the Castle of Heidelberg, at once palace and fortress, high-placed and superb but only the stateliest ruin in Europe, while the rail-train thunders through the tunnel beneath it, and the Neckar sings along its near channel as if tower and tournament never had been. Revolution, transformation, organic change, have thus all the time for this hundred years been proceeding in Europe; sometimes silent, but oftener amid thunders of stricken fields; sometimes pacific, but oftener with garments rolled in blood.

In England the progress has been peaceful, the popular demands being ratified as law whenever the need became apparent. It has been vast, as well as peaceful; in the extension of suffrage, in the ever-increasing power of the Commons, in popular education. Chatham himself would hardly know his own England if he should return to it. The Throne continues, illustrated by the virtues of her who fills it; and the ancient forms still obtain in Parliament. But it could not have occurred to him, or to Burke, that a century after the ministry of Grenville the embarkation of the Pilgrims would be one of the prominent historical pictures on the panels of the lobby of the House of Lords, or that the name of Oliver Cromwell, and of Bradshaw, President of the High Court of Justice, would be cut in the stone in Westminster Abbey, over the places in which they were buried, and whence their decaying bodies were dragged to the gibbet and the ditch. England is now, as has been well said, “an aristocratic Republic, with a permanent Executive.” Its only perils lie in the fact of that aristocracy, which, however, is flexible enough to endure, of that permanence in the Executive, which would hardly outlive one vicious Prince.

What changes have taken place in France, I need not remind you, nor how uncertain is still its future. You know how the swift untiring wheels, of advance or reaction, have rolled this way and that, in Italy, and in Spain; how Germany has had to be reconstructed; how Hungary has had to fight and suffer for that just place in the Austrian councils which only imperial defeat surrendered. You know how precarious the equilibrium now is, in many states, between popular rights and princely prerogative ; what armies are maintained, to fortify governments; what fear of sudden and violent change, like an avalanche tumbling at the touch of a foot, perplexes nations. The records of change make the history of Europe. The expectation of change is almost as wide as the continent itself.

Meanwhile, how permanent has been this Republic, which seemed at the outset to foreign spectators a mere sudden insurrection, a mere organized riot! Its organic law, adopted after exciting debate, but arousing no battle and enforced by no army, has been interpreted, and peacefully administered, with one great exception, from the beginning. It has once been assailed, with passion and skill, with splendid daring and unbounded self-sacrifice, by those who sought a sectional advantage through its destruction. No monarchy of the world could have withstood that assault. It seemed as if the last fatal Apocalypse had come, to drench the land with plague and blood, and wrap it in a fiery gloom. The Republic,

“pouring like the tide into a breach.
With ample and brim fulness of its force.”

subdued the rebellion, emancipated the race which had been in subjection, restored the dominion of the old Constitution, amended its provisions in the contrary direction from that which had been so fiercely sought, gave it guaranties of endurance while the continent lasts, and made its ensigns more eminent than ever in the regions from which they had been expelled. The very portions of the people which then sought its overthrow are now again its applauding adherents—the great and constant reconciling force, the tranquillizing Irenarch, being the freedom which it leaves in their hands.

It has kept its place, this Republic of ours, in spite of the rapid expansion of the nation over territory so wide that the scanty strip of the original states is only as a fringe on its immense mantle. It has kept its place, while vehement debates, involving the profound^st ethical principles, have stirred to its depths the whole public mind. It has kept its place, while the tribes of mankind have been pouring upon it, seeking the shelter and freedom which it gave. It saw an illustrious President murdered, by the bullet of an assassin. It saw his place occupied as quietly by another as if nothing unforeseen or alarming had occurred. It saw prodigious armies assembled, for its defence. It saw those armies, at the end of the war, marching in swift and long procession up the streets of the Capital, and then dispersing into their former peaceful citizenship, as if they had had no arms in their hands. The General before whose skill and will those armies had been shot upon the forces which opposed them, and whose word had been their military law, remained for three years an appointed officer of that government he had saved. Elected then to be the head of that government, and again re-elected by the ballots of his countrymen, in a few months more he will have retired, to be thenceforth a citizen like the rest, eligible to office, and entitled to vote, but with no thought of any prerogative descending to him, or to his children, from his great service and military fame. The Republic, whose triumphing armies he led, will remember his name, and be grateful for his work; but neither to him, nor to any one else, will it ever give sovereignty over itself.

From the Lakes to the Gulf, its will is the law, its dominion complete. Its centripetal and centrifugal forces are balanced, almost as in the astronomy of the heavens. Decentralizing authority, it puts his own part of it into the hand of every citizen. Giving free scope to private enterprise, allowing not only, but accepting and encouraging, each movement of the public reason which is its only terrestrial rule, there is no threat, in all its sky, of division or downfall. It cannot be successfully assailed from within. It never will be assailed from without, with a blow at its life, while other nations continue sane.

It has been sometimes compared to a pyramid, broad-based and secure, not liable to overthrow as is obelisk or column, by storm or age. The comparison is just, but it is not sufficient. It should rather be compared to one of the permanent features of nature, and not to any artificial construction:—to the river, which flows, like our own Hudson, along the courses that nature opens, forever in motion, but forever the same; to the lake, which lies on common days level and bright in placid stillness, while it gathers its fullness from many lands, and lifts its waves in stormy strength when winds assail it; to the mountain, which is shaped by no formula of art, and which only rarely, in some supreme sun-burst, flushes with color, but whose roots the very earthquake cannot shake, and on whose brow the storms fall hurtless, while under its shelter the cottage nestles, and up its sides the gardens climb.

So stands the Republic:

Whole as the marble, founded as the rook,
As broad and general as the casing air.

Our government has been permanent, as established upon the old Declaration, and steadily sustained by the undecaying and molding life in the soul of the nation. It has been peaceful, also, for the most part, in scheme and in spirit; and has shown at no time such an appetite for war as has been familiar, within the century, in many lands.

This may be denied, by foreign critics; or at any rate be explained, if the fact be admitted, by our isolation from other states, by our occupation in peaceful labors, which have left no room for martial enterprise, perhaps by an alleged want in us of that chivalric and high-pitched spirit, which is gladdened by danger and which welcomes the fray. I do not think the explanation sufficient, the analysis just .

This people was trained to military effort, from its beginning. It had in it the blood of Saxon and Norman, neither of whom was afraid of war; the very same blood which a few years after was poured out like water at Marston Moor, and Naseby, and Dunbar. Ardor and fortitude were added to its spirit by those whose fathers had followed Coligni, by the children of those whom Alva and Parma could not conquer, or whom Gustavus had inspired with his intense paramount will. With savages in the woods, and the gray wolf prowling around its cabins, the hand of this people was from the first as familiar with the gunstock as with mattock or plough; and it spent more time, in proportion to its leisure, it spent more life, in proportion to its numbers, from 1607 to 1776, in protecting itself against violent assault than was spent by France, the most martial of kingdoms, on all the bloody fields of Europe.

Then came the Revolution, with its years of war, and its crowning success, to intensify, and almost to consecrate this spirit, and to give it distribution; while, from that time, the nation has been taken into its substance abounding elements from all the fighting peoples of the earth. The Irishman, who is never so entirely himself as when the battle-storm hurtles around him; the Frenchman, who says “After you Gentlemen,” before the infernal fire of Fontenoy ; the German, whose irresistible tread the world lately heard at Sadowa and Sedan —these have been entering representatives of two of them entering by millions, into the Republic. If any nation, therefore, should have a fierce and martial temper, this is the one. If any people should keep its peaceful neighbors in fear, lest its aggression should smite their homes, it is a people born, and trained, and replenished like this, admitting no rule but its own will, and conscious of a strength whose annual increase makes arithmetic pant.

What has been the fact? Lay out of sight that late civil war which could not be averted, when once it had been threatened, except by the sacrifice of the government itself, and a wholly unparalleled public suicide, and how much of war with foreign powers has the century seen? There has been a frequent crackle of musketry along the frontiers, as Indian tribes, which refused to be civilized, have slowly and fiercely retreated toward the West. There was one war declared against Tripoli, in 1801, when the Republic took by the throat the African pirates to whom Europe paid tribute, and when the gallantry of the Preble and Decatur gave early distinction to our navy. There was a war declared against England, in 1812, when our seamen had been taken from under our flag, from the decks of our national ships, and our commerce had been practically swept from the seas. There was a war affirmed already to exist in Mexico, in 1846, entered into by surprise, never formally declared, against which the moral sentiment of the nation rose widely in revolt, but which in its result added largely to our territory, opened to us California treasures, and wrote the names of Buena Vista and Monterey on our short annals.

That has been our military history; and if a People, as powerful and as proud, has anywhere been more peaceable also, in the last hundred years, the strictest research fails to find it. Smarting with the injury done us by England during the crisis of our national peril, in spite of the remonstrances presented through that distinguished citizen who should have been your orator to-day—while hostile taunts had incensed our people, while burning ships had exasperated commerce, and while what looked like artful evasions had made statesmen indignant —with a half-million men who had hardly yet laid down their arms, with a navy never before so vast, or so fitted for service— when a war with England would have had the force of passion behind it, and would at any rate have shown to the world that the nation respects its starry flag, and means to have it secure on the seas—we referred all differences to arbitration, appointed commissioners, tried the cause at Geneva, with advocates, not with armies, and got a prompt and ample verdict . If Canada now lay next to Yorkshire it would not be safer from armed incursion than it is when divided by only a custom-house from all the strength of this Republic

The fact is apparent, and the reason not less so. A monarchy, just as it is despotic, finds incitement to war; for preoccupation of the popular mind; to gratify nobles, officers, the army; for historic renown. An intelligent Republic hates war, and shuns it. It counts standing armies a curse only second to an annual pestilence. It wants no glory but from growth. It delights itself in arts of peace, seeks social enjoyment and increase of possessions, and feels instinctively that, like Israel of old, “its strength is to sit still.” It cannot bear to miss the husbandman from the fields, the citizen from the town, the house-father from the home, the worshipper from the church. To change or shape other people’s institutions is no part of its business. To force them to accept its scheme of government would simply contradict and nullify its charter. Except, then, when it is startled into passion by the cry of a suffering under oppression which stirs its pulses into tumult, or when it is assailed in its own rights, citizens, property, it will not go to war; nor even then, if diplomacy can find a remedy for the wrong. “Millions for defence,” said (Jotesworth Pinckney to the French Directory, when Talleyrand in their name had threatened him with war, “but not a cent for tribute.” He might have added, “and not a dollar for aggressive strife.”

It will never be safe to insult such a nation, or to outrage its citizens; for the reddest blood is in its veins, and some Captain Ingraham may always appear, to lay his little sloop of war along-side the offending frigate, with shotted guns, and a peremptory summons. There is a way to make powder inexplosive; but, treat it chemically how you will, the dynamite will not stand many blows of the hammer. The detonating tendency is too permanent in it. But if left to itself, such a People will be peaceful, as ours has been. It will foster peace among the nations. It will tend to dissolve great permanent armaments, as the light conquers ice, and summer sunshine breaks the glacier which a hundred trip-hammers could only scar. The longer it continues, the more widely and effectively its influence spreads, the more will its benign example hasten the day, so long foretold, so surely coming, when

The war-drum throbs no longer, and the battle-flags are furled.
In the Parliament of Man, the Federation of the World.

Mr. President: Fellow-Citizens:—To an extent too great for your patience, but with a rapid incompleteness that is only too evident as we match it with the theme, I have outlined before you some of the reasons why we have right to commemorate the day whose hundredth anniversary has brought us together, and why the paper then adopted has interest and importance not only for us, but for all the advancing sons of men. Thank God that he who framed the Declaration, and he who was its foremost champion, both lived to see the nation they had shaped growing to greatness, and to die together, in that marvelous coincidence, on its semi-centennial! The fifty years which have passed since then have only still further honored their work. Mr. Adams was mistaken in the day which he named as the one to be most fondly remembered. It was not that on which Independence of the empire of Great Britain was formally resolved. It was that on which the reasons were given which justified the act, and the principles were announced which made it of secular significance to mankind. But he would have been absolutely right in saying of the fourth day what he did say of the second: it “will be the most remarkable epoch in the history of America; to be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival, commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to Almighty God, from one end of the continent to the other.”

It will not be forgotten, in the land or in the earth, until the stars have fallen from their poise; or until our vivid morningstar of Republican liberty, not losing its luster, has seen its special brightness fade in the ampler effulgence of a freedom universal!

But while we rejoice in that which is past, and gladly recognize the vast organific mystery of life -which was in the Declaration, the plans of Providence which slowly and silently, but with ceaseless progression, had led the way to it, the immense and enduring results of good which from it have flowed, let us not forget the duty which always equals privilege, and that of peoples,, as well as of persons, to whomsoever much is given, shall only therefore the more be required. Let us consecrate our selves, each one of us, here, to the further duties which wait to be fulfilled, to the work which shall consummate the great work of the Fathers!

From scanty soils come richest grapes, and on severe and rocky slopes the trees are often of toughest fibre The wines of Rudesheim and Johannesburg cannot be grown in the fatness of gardens, and the cedars of Lebanon disdain the levels of marsh and meadow. So a heroism is sometimes native to penury which luxury enervates, and the great resolution which sprang up in the blast, and blossomed under inclement skies, may lose its shapely and steadfast strength when the air is all of summer softness. In exuberant resources is to be the coming American peril; in a swiftly increasing luxury of life. The old humility, hardihood, patience, are too likely too be lost when material success again opens, as it will, all avenues to wealth, and when its brilliant prizes solicit, as again they will, the national spirit.

Be it ours to endeavor that that temper of the Fathers which was nobler than their work shall live in the children, and exalt to its tone their coming career; that political intelligence, patriotic devotion, a reverent spirit toward Him who is above, an exulting expectation of the future of the “World, and a sense of our relation to it, shall bs, as of old, essential forces in our public life; that education and religion keep step all the time with the Nation’s advance, and the School and the Church be always at home wherever its flag shakes out its folds. In a spirit worthy the memories of the Past let us set ourselves to accomplish the tasks which, in the sphere of national politics, still await completion. “We burn the sunshine of other years, when we ignite the wood or coal upon our hearths. “We enter a privilege which ages have secured, in our daily enjoyment of political freedom. While the kindling glow irradiates our homes, let it shed its luster on our spirit, and quicken it for its further work.

Let us fight against the tendency of educated men to reserve themselves from politics, remembering that no other form of human activity is so grand or effective as that which affects, first the character, and then the revelation of character in the government, of a great and free People. Let us make religious dissension here, as a force in politics, as absurd as witchcraft.(13) Let party names be nothing to us, in comparison with that costly and proud inheritance of liberty and of law, which parties exist to conserve and enlarge, which any party will have here to maintain if it would not be buried, at the next cross-roads, with a stake through its breast. Let us seek the unity of all sections of the Republic, through the prevalence in all of mutual respect, through the assurance in all of local freedom, through the mastery in all of that supreme spirit which flashed from the lips of Patrick Henry, when he said, in the first Continental Congress, “I am not a Virginian, but an American.” Let us take care that labor maintains its ancient place of privilege and honor, and that industry has no fetters imposed, of legal restraint or of social discredit, to hinder its work or to lessen its wage. Let us turn, and overturn, in public discussion, in political change, till we secure a Civil Service, honorable, intelligent, and worthy of the land, in which capable integrity, not partisan zeal, shall be the condition of each public trust; and let us resolve that whatever it may cost, of labor and of patience, of sharper economy and of general sacrifice, it shall come to pass that wherever American labor toils, wherever American enterprise plans, wherever American commerce reaches, thither again shall go as of old the country’s coin—the American Eagle, with the encircling stars and golden plumes! In a word, Fellow-Citizens, the moral life of the nation being ever renewed, all advancement and timely reform will come as comes the burgeoning of the tree from the secret force which fills its veins. Let us each of us live, then, in the blessing and the duty of our great citizenship, as those who are conscious of unreckoned indebtedness to a heroic and prescient Past:—the grand and solemn lineage of whose freedom runs back beyond Bunker Hill or the Mayflower, runs back beyond muniments and memories of men, and has the majesty of far centuries on it! Let us live as those for whom God hid a continent from the world, till He could open all its scope to the freedom and faith of gathered peoples, from many lands, to be a nation to His honor and praise! Let us live as those to whom He commits the magnificent trust of blessing peoples many and far, by the truths which He has made our life, and by the history which He helps us to accomplish.

Such relation to a Past ennobles this transient and vanishing life. Such a power of influence on the distant and the Future, is the supremest terrestrial privilege. It is ours if we will, in the mystery of that spirit, which has an immortal and a ubiquitous life. “With the swifter instruments now in our hands, with the land compacted into one immense embracing home, with the world opened to the interchange of thought, and thrilling with the hopes that now animate its life, each American citizen has superb opportunity to make his influence felt afar, and felt for long!

Let us not be unmindful of this ultimate and inspiring lesson of the hour! By all the memories of the Past, by all the impulse of the Present, by the noblest instincts of our own souls, by the touch of His sovereign spirit upon us, God make us faithful to the work, and to Him! that so not only this city may abide, in long and bright tranquility of peace, when our eyes have shut forever on street, and spire, and populous square; that so the land, in all its future, may reflect an influence from this anniversary; and that, when another century has passed, the sun which then ascends the heavens may look on a world advanced and illumined beyond our thought, and here may behold the same great Nation, born of struggle, baptized into liberty, and in its second terrific trial purchased by blood, then expanded and multiplied till all the land blooms at its touch, and still one in its life, because still pacific, Christian, free!

Footnotes:
(1) Te Deum also known as Ambrosian Hymn or A Song of the Church is an early Christian hymn of praise, joy and thanksgiving.
O God, we praise Thee, and acknowledge Thee to be the supreme Lord.
Everlasting Father, all the earth worships Thee.
All the Angels, the heavens and all angelic powers,
All the Cherubim and Seraphim, continuously cry to Thee:
Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of Hosts!
Heaven and earth are full of the Majesty of Thy glory.
The glorious choir of the Apostles,
The wonderful company of Prophets,
The white-robed army of Martyrs, praise Thee.
Holy Church throughout the world acknowledges Thee:
The Father of infinite Majesty;
Thy adorable, true and only Son;
Also the Holy Spirit, the Comforter.
O Christ, Thou art the King of glory!
Thou art the everlasting Son of the Father.
When Thou tookest it upon Thyself to deliver man,
Thou didst not disdain the Virgin’s womb.
Having overcome the sting of death, Thou opened the Kingdom of Heaven to all believers.
Thou sittest at the right hand of God in the glory of the Father.
We believe that Thou willst come to be our Judge.
We, therefore, beg Thee to help Thy servants whom Thou hast redeemed with Thy
Precious Blood.
Let them be numbered with Thy Saints in everlasting glory.
Save Thy people, O Lord, and bless Thy inheritance!
Govern them, and raise them up forever.
Every day we thank Thee.
And we praise Thy Name forever, yes, forever and ever.
O Lord, deign to keep us from sin this day.
Have mercy on us, O Lord, have mercy on us.
Let Thy mercy, O Lord, be upon us, for we have hoped in Thee.
O Lord, in Thee I have put my trust; let me never be put to shame.

(2) The Hongs were major business houses in Canton, China and later Hong Kong with significant influence on patterns of consumerism, trade, manufacturing and other key areas of the economy. They were originally led by Howqua as head of the cohong

(3) May 15, A.D. 1213.
(4)  “Quant a ceux qui se tronvaient du cOte des barons, il n’est ni nccessaire ni possible de les enumerer, puisque toute la noblesse d’Angletree r6unie en un seul corps, ne pouvait tomber sous le ealcul. Lorsque les pretentions des revoltes eurent ete debattues, le roi Jean, comprenunt son inf6riorite vis-a-vis des forces de ses barons, accorda sans resistance les lois et libertes qn’on lui demandait, et les conflrma par la cbarte.”
Chronique de Matt. Paris, trad, par A. Huillard Breholles. Tome Troisieme, pp. C, 7.
(5) Calendar of State Papers, Domestic Series, Charles L, 1628-9.
Rushworth’s Hist. Coll. Charles I., 625.
It is rather remarkable that neither Hume, Clarendon, Hallam, De Lolme, nor Macaulay, mentions this date, though nil recognize the capital importance of the event. It does not appear in even Knight’s Popular History of England. Miss Aikin, in her Memoirs of the Court of Charles I., gives it as June 8, [Vol. I, 216 ]; and Chambers’ Encyclopaedia, which ought to be careful and accurate in regard to the dates of events in English history, says, under the title “Petition of Rights:’ “At length, on both Houses of Parliament insisting on a fuller answer, he pronounced an unqualified assent in the usual form of words, – Soi’ fait comme il est d6sirj,’ on the 26th of June, 1628.”‘ The same statement is repeated in the latest Revised Edition of that Encyclopaedia. Lingard gives the date correctly.
(6) Welwood’s Memorials, quoted in Forster’s Life of Pym, p. 62.
(7) Essay on Schiller. Essays: Vol. II, p. 301.
(8) Works, Vol I p. 125.
(9)  Ipse autem rex, non debet esse sub homine, sed sub Deo et sub Lege, quia Lex facit regent. Attribuat igitur rex Legi quod Lex attribuit ei, videlicet dominationem et potestatem, non est enim rex ubi domiuatur voluntas et non Lex De Leg, et Cons. Angliae; Lib. I., chap 8, P. 5.
Rex autem habet superiorem, Deum. Item, Legem, per quam factus est rex. Item, curiam suam, videlicet comites, Barones, quia, comites dicuntur quasi socii regis, et qui habet socium habet magiatrum; et ideo si rex fuerit sine fraeno, i. e sine Lege, debent ei fraenum ponere; etc. Lib. II., chap. 16, P. 3.
The following is still more explicit: “As the head of a body natural cannot change its nerves and sinews, cannot deny to the several parts their proper energy, their due proportion and ailment of blood; neither can a King, who is the head of a body politic, change the laws thereof, nor take from the people what is theirs by right, against their consent. For he is appointed to protect his subjects in their lives, properties, and laws; for this very end and purpose he has the delegation of power from the people, and he has no just claim to any other power but this.” Sir John Fortescue’s Treatise, De Laudibus Legum Angliae, c. 9, (about A. D. 1470,) quoted by Hallam, Mid. Ages, chap. VIII., part III
(10) Speech of October 31, 1776: “The House divided on the Amendment. Yeas, 87; nays, 242.”
(11)  Rulers are no more than attorneys, agents, trustees, for the people, and if the cause, the interest and trust, is insidiously betrayed, or wantonly trifled away, the people have a right to revoke the authority that they themselves have deputed, and to constitute abler and better agents, attorneys, and trustees. —John Adams. Dissertation on Canon and Feudal Law; 1766. Works : Vol. III, pp. 456-7.
(12) Vol. VIII., p. 473
(13) Cromwell in sometimes considered a bigot. His rule on this subject is therefore the more worthy of record: “Sir, the State, in choosing men to serve it, takes no notice of their opinions; if they be willing faithfully to serve it, that satisfies. Take heed of being sharp, or too easily sharpened by others, against those to whom you can object little, but that they square not with you in every opinion concerning matters of religion. If there be any other offence to be charged upon him, that must, in a judicial way, receive determination.”—Letter to Major-General Crawford, 10th March, 1643.
Earls of Albemarle, Arundel, Gloucester, Hereford, Norfolk
See also:Christianity and the Founding of the United States the Simple Truth
The Consequence of Bad Legal Precedent in American Legislation
Wide Spread And Growing Corruption In The Public Service Of The States And Nation
THE FIRST CENTURY OF THE REPUBLIC by Judge Isaac W Smith 1876
THE PERPETUITY OF THE REPUBLIC by Joseph Kidder July 4th 1876
Open Letter to ALL Politicians and Bureaucrats, we’re coming for you
Constitution of the United States and it’s Governmental Operations (In Plain English so even Politicians, Lawyers and Bureaucrats can understand)
THE SOURCE AND SECURITY OF AMERICAN FREEDOM AND PROGRESS by Courtlandt Parker 1876 
THE DESTINY OF THE REPUBLIC by Lewis W. Clark 1876 New Hampshire
THE COST OF POPULAR LIBERTY by Brooks Adams July 4th 1876
The Practical Advance Of Human Freedom Under The Trumpet Call Made In 1776 by Charles F Adams
THE GRAND MISSION OF AMERICA by Joseph H. Twitchell, July 4, 1876
 

THE GRAND MISSION OF AMERICA by Joseph H. Twitchell, July 4, 1876

rev_joseph_h_twichellTHE GRAND MISSION OF AMERICA. AN ADDRESS BY REV. JOSEPH H. TWITCIIELL 1838-1918, A Lincoln Republican and the reported best friend of Samuel L. Clemens i.e. Mark Twain. Delivered At The Centennial Celebration At Hartford, Conn., July 4th, 1876.

This republic was ordained of God who has provided the conditions of the organization of the race into nations by the configuration of land and the interspaces of the sea. By these national organizations the culture and development of the race are secured. We believe that our nation is a creature of God— that he ordained it for an object, and we believe that we have some comprehension of what that object is. He gave us the best results of the travail of ages past for an outfit, separating us from the circumstances that in the existing nations encumbered these results, and sent us forth to do his will. We built on foundations already prepared a new building. Other men had labored and we entered upon their labors. God endowed and set us for a sign to testify the worth of men and the hope there is for man. And we are rejoicing to-day that in our first hundred years we seem to have measurably—measurably—fulfilled our Divine calling. It is not our national prosperity, great as it is, that is the appropriate theme of our most joyful congratulations, but it is our success in demonstrating that men are equal as God’s children, which affords a prophecy of better things for the race. That is what our history as a lesson amounts to.

There have been failures in particulars, but not on the whole; though we fall short, yet still, on the whole, the outline of the lesson may be read clearly. The day of remembrance and of recollection is also the day of anticipation. We turn from looking back one hundred years to looking forward one hundred. It is well for some reasons to dwell upon to-day, but the proper compliment of our memories, reaching over generations, is hope reaching forward over a similar period of time. Dwelling on to-day—filling our eyes with it—we can neither see far back nor far on. We are caught in the contemplation of evils that exist and that occupy us with a sense of what has not been done and of unpleasing aspects. True there are evils, but think what has been wrought in advancing the work of the grand mission of America. Do we doubt that the work is to go on? No! There are to be strifes and contending forces. But as out of strife has come progress, so will it be hereafter. Some things that we have not wanted, as well as some things that we have wanted have been done, yet on the whole the result is progress. It is God’s way to bring better things by strife. (The speaker here alluded to the battle of Gettysburg, where he officiated as chaplain in the burial of the dead—the blue and the gray often in the same grave—and said that the only prayer that he could offer was “Thy will be done, thy Kingdom come on earth as it . is in heaven.”

The republic is to continue on in the same general career it has hitherto followed. The same great truths its history has developed and realized in social and civil life are to still farther emerge. The proposition that all men are created equal is to be still further demonstrated. Human rights are to be vindicated and set free from all that would deny them—Is any law that asserts the dignity of human nature to be abrogated? Never. The Republic is to become a still brighter and brighter sign to the nations to show them the way to liberty. We have opened our doors to the oppressed. Are those doors to be closed? No; a thousand times no. We have given out an invitation to those who are held in the chains of wrong. Is that invitation to be recalled? No, never. The invitation has been accepted; and here the speaker alluded to the fact—which shows how homogenous we finally become as a nation, though heterogeneous through immigration—that the Declaration of Independence is read here to-day by a man whoso father was born in Ireland; the national songs are sung by a man who was himself born in Ireland; and the company of singers here, nearly all, were born in Germany. Then he passed to the subject of Chinese education in this country and spoke of Yung Wing and his life-work, alluding to him as the representative of the better thought and hope of China, and then paid his respects to that part of the Cincinnati platform which alludes to this race. So long as he had voted he had given his support to this political party whose convention was held at Cincinnati, but that platform wherein it seems on this point to verge toward un-American doctrine, he repudiated; “I disown it; I say woe to its policy; I bestow my malediction upon it.” Now, if there is any one here who will pay like respect to the platform of the other party the whole duty will be done. We are urged to-day in view of our calling, and of the fulfillment of the past to set our faces and hearts toward the future in harmony and sympathy with the hope we are to realize. Let every man make it a personal duty and look within himself. God save the Republic! May it stand in righteousness and mercy ; so only can it stand. If we forsake our calling, God will take away the crown He has given us. The kingdom of God will be taken from us and given to another nation which shall bring forth the fruits thereof.

See also:
The Consequence of Bad Legal Precedent in American Legislation
True American Patriotism Defined by Hon. Curtis Guild and H. F. Kinnerney 1876
THE SOURCE AND SECURITY OF AMERICAN FREEDOM AND PROGRESS by Courtlandt Parker 1876
PATRIOT SONS OF PATRIOT SIRES by Rev. Samuel Francis Smith 1808-1895
Joseph Baldwin: Address 1892, to National Teachers Association in New York
TRUE FREEDOM! A Poem by James Russell Lowell 1819-1891
THE GENIUS OF AMERICA by Hon. Dr. Felix R. Brunot July 4, 1876
A PRAYER FOR THE NATION by Rev. William Bacon Stevens July 4, 1876
Advice to Young People from Noah Webster Father of American Education
The Wisdom and Love of God as Shown by His Creation by Noah Webster
COURAGE! A Poem by Bryan Waller Procter 1787-1874
AIM HIGH! An Address by President Benjamin Harrison 1893
A GOOD NAME by Joel Hawes 1789-1867

THE SOURCE AND SECURITY OF AMERICAN FREEDOM AND PROGRESS by Courtlandt Parker 1876

Courtlandt Parker 1818- 1907The History and Events That Led to The Founding of the United States of America! One Nation Under God! (Long, but very well worth the read)

This is our year of Jubilee. A hundred years have rolled away since the Declaration of our Independence as States, and the formation of the confederacy which ripened into nationality: but little more than two hundred years since the earliest wanderers “not knowing whither they went,” ignorant whether to hope or to despair, left the shallops upon which they had braved the ocean, and sought upon this continent a new home.

 
See also:
HISTORY BEFORE and DURING THE ERA OF THE FORMATION OF THE CONSTITUTION of the UNITED STATES
AMERICAN INDEPENDENCE by Samuel Adams Delivered to Congress Aug 1, 1776
 

One hundred years! The life-time of some few men. Some child born this moment may see the recurrence of a century. But how brief a portion is it of the life of most nations! In the clays of Pericles, Athens had existed over one thousand years. Almost seven hundred intervened between the birth of Augustus Caesar and the building of Rome. The census of the great city thirty years before the Christian Era, made its population 4,000,000 souls. Sixteen hundred years comprise the life-time of Egypt from its foundation until Cambyses became its conqueror, while from the union of the Kingdoms of Great Britain under the name of England, until the birth of Shakespeare, was over seven hundred years; from thence till now, more than three hundred more. The greatness of America attained in one hundred years, judged by the ordinary tests of national progress, can perhaps best be appreciated by each a brief summary, exhibiting at a glance the time required for the development of other Empires, in contrast with that taken for our own.

The century over which we rejoice has been one of rare development in every quarter, and in every field of human progress. Think of the events which have distinguished it. That establishment of separation from the mother country which we wrongly term the war of the Revolution; the rightly called Revolution of France; the wars succeeding, which devastated Europe, and illustrated the career of the greatest captain of the world; the singular, romantic and varying life of his distinguished nephew, passing from a prison to a throne, and thence to inglorious flight and death in luxurious exile; the rise of the great Russian Empire from almost barbarism to the second station among civilized nations; the creation of Australia; the almost new creation of Italy; the subjugation, complete, though sudden, of France to Germany; as sudden and more complete than when the brave and adventurous Henry the Fifth brought to his knees the French monarch of his day at the bloody field of Agincourt; the romantic conquest of Mexico by our own arms; the strange revelation and settlement of California ; and springing from or at least connected with it the stupendous Civil War through which we ourselves have passed, with its momentous consequences to us, to the race so long enslaved among us, to all mankind, in that it has demonstrated the inherent toughness of Democracy, and revealed that we are a Nation which, if it may crumble, can never be overcome or fall; all these and many more historical events have distinguished this great century and made it most remarkable of all which the world has ever seen. The man whose life spans it, has beheld more stupendous changes than were ever crowded before within so short a time.

It cannot be fairly alleged that the century past excells its predecessors in individual, intellectual or moral development. Knowledge has been widely diffused, and in certain directions greatly increased. But it is not the era of great men, of deepest and most powerful thinkers. It seems as if diffusion was almost inconsistent with depth. The distinction of the ago is in discovery, more than in thought . But in this region, namely, that of material discovery, the deeds of the century have been even more remarkable than its political history. Who can enumerate them? Invention has been most prolific and successful, revolutionizing the methods and laws of life and action everywhere. In war, the clumsy firelock and insignificant though awe-inspiring ordnance of 1776 have given place to the breach-loader, the revolver, the chassepot and needle-gun, the mitrailleuse, the rifle cannon, the huge columbiad and other mighty weapons, whose roar makes that which appalled our forefathers seem nothing in comparison, while fortifications once impregnable are now regarded as utterly and absurdly unavailing. The “wooden walls of England” have come to be despised. A Yankee contriver produced a contemptible naval “cheese-box” whose marvelous success, both for offense and defense, has thrown doubt on the utility of ordinary ships, and art is now seeking in submarine navigation and the use of torpedo boats the means of naval attack and defense. It is through war that nations attain Peace, and to-day the art of war is not simply revolutionized; it is positively mystified; taught to distrust everything it knows, groping for some discovery or invention by which to contend successfully with the inventions which have made old schemes and weapons ridiculous. In agriculture, methods and means are entirely changed. True, the old plans remain. Virgil’s Georgics [The Georgics is a poem in four books, likely published in 29 BC] may still instruct the farmer. The plow, the harrow, the spade, the hoe, the scythe, the flail and the sickle still remain. But with these ancient implements, the reaper, the mower, the planter, the thresher, and a host of other labor-savers have largely done away with personal toil, whilst chemistry and science have made the earth teem with strange fertility, and the art of gardening has furnished its votaries with the power of almost creation.

In medicine and surgery the progress of the century is perhaps most remarkable. Vaccination has all but quelled the direst of all pestilences. Chemistry has supplied specifics remedying in skillful hands almost every chronic disease, while anaesthetics have robbed surgery of its terrors and made operations possible and common which before men never dared. The victories of medical and surgical skill over disease and death during the wars which have lately scourged Europe and America have illustrated a heroism, individual and professional, not excelled in any age: a devotion to duty and to scientific research of which the world may well be proud.

In mechanics what triumphs have abounded. The perfected cotton-gin brought into many times multiplied use as a fabric for clothing, warmth and decoration almost unknown before, and stimulated an agriculture, the value of which changed the seat of empire. But the steam engine—what differences to mankind have not been produced by its discovery and application. The stationary steam engine disembowels the earth or foils fable in the multiplication of mechanical production. Applied as a motive power it has changed the habits and character of the world. The steamboat upon our rivers; the magnificent steamship defying nature and making the ocean its slave; the locomotive, annihilating space and time, binding together distant realms and opposite oceans, so that no region on earth seems any longer foreign; could imagination picture what would happen were the use of steam suddenly lost? Yet before this century it was not known.

Even more wonderful in its effects upon mankind has been the discovery of magnetism and the telegraph. Europe lies just across the road. Its inhabitants are our companions with whom we hold daily converse.

Catalogue a few of the mechanical inventions of this wonderful century. The steam engine, the telegraph, the photograph, the hydraulic press, the repeater, the steamboat, the steamship, the locomotive, the diving bell, the rolling mill, the sewing machine. In each word what revolutions in Science and Art and in the habits of life and society start up before the mind.

A noticeable fact in regard to most, if not all, these revolutionizing inventions is that they were the work either of Englishmen or Americans. The progress of the century is mainly due to this one branch of the human family, and the same thing is true most extensively of minor inventions and discoveries. This may be called the Anglo-American century. Other peoples have adopted what Englishmen or American have suggested or begun. But these have led in the march of society.

Whence this striking fact? Whence the prominence, and I hesitate not to stay, without stopping more carefully to prove it, the superiority of this race of mankind during the century just concluded? It was not always so. Up to the reign of Elizabeth and even to its termination in 1603, Spain was a greater power than England; Spaniards more enterprising as sailors and discoverers; more distinguished in the history of the world. A hundred years before, three hundred Spaniards had conquered Cuba. Some ninety years previous, Cortez had taken Mexico. About the same time, Magellan sailed through the straits which bear his name and thus entered the Pacific Ocean. A few years later, in 1533, Pizarro completed his wicked conquest of Peru. France at that time was likewise greater than England, and even colonized in America with greater energy and earlier. The Empire of the Western World was long the prize of doubtful struggle among these three great nations. Even North America was parceled among them. Florida, named by its Spanish Governor in 1512 and only ceded to the United States in 1821, and Canada, whose dominion by the French began in 1535 and ended in 1759, show by their very names how easily the destiny of this land of ours might have been altered.

Again do we recur to the question, why the prominence during the last century of England and America? Why their wonderful progress, while other nations, greater once than England, and far greater than infant America, even when progressive, halt and fall behind?

I speak of the progress of England during this eventful century, taking it into consideration at the same time with our own. It is right and profitable that we do so—it will tend to restrain our pride, and if rightly studied, perhaps to give us lessons for our future. Let us pause in our consideration of the great question proposed, and glance, though but a moment, at the mighty structure, the British Empire.

The area of the British Isles is some 123,000 square miles; less than California, or Dakotah, or Montana; not half as large as Texas; somewhat over twice as large as the State of New York. But the area of all other British possessions is 3,034,827 square miles, situate everywhere, so that it is true, without a figure, that Britain’s morning drum heralds the sun in its progress through the world. And this, though our arms wrested from Great Britain so much of all the immense country now belonging to the United States and its territories, comprising no less than 3,014,784 square miles.

The population of these islands in 1871 was 31,817,108. But under their sway, there were besides 208,091,858. In 1780, the population of these islands did not exceed 15,800,000. That of their possessions certainly then bore no comparison to the number existing now.

The population of the United States, in 1790 was 3,929,214; 1870, 38,558,371. The area of the original States was only 820,680. That of the Union now 3,614,784

It were enough for America to be the daughter of such a mother. The grandest proof of our progress is the fact that the population of the Union to-day exceeds that of the islands of Great Britain by some 7,000,000, while one hundred years ago, our numbers were scarcely one-fifth of theirs; nearly 12,000,000 less .

It were profitless to go further; to state the material wealth of these two great Empires or to show their increase in the century. It is enough to realize the number subject to their dominion—the extent of the world’s area over which each rules. We come back to the question most interesting, why the prominence of these two great commonwealths; why their admitted eminence in progress during this eminently progressive century?

Each owes much to isolation and abundant opportunity; much to the blood which flows in the veins of its people; much to the civil institutions which have molded their character, and through which, doubtless, both the similarities and differences of Englishmen and Americans have been worked out. But we cannot fail to observe one striking fact. The impetus of English greatness was given by the generation that settled America. It was pushed onwards by the immediately succeeding generations, following for the most part the same course of thought and practice, and from which, from time to time, successive colonies came. The England of to-day is the England first fairly developed in the reign of Elizabeth and James, and which has since only been modified, never fully changed. The America of today, departing, I fear, too carelessly from the principles of its originators, is yet great and worthy just in proportion as it adheres to them. To state the view I wish to maintain in short compass, it is this: the character and greatness of England and America, of Englishmen and Americans, are the result of the principles of tolerant Christianity, that is to say, of the open Bible and the inculcation of its precepts and doctrines. The freedom of which we rightly boast is better than any other freedom because it is that which springs from the open Bible, and is reverential and dutiful at the same time that it asserts the rights of man. The progress over which we celebrate this year of jubilee, is due, would we but see it, to the action of those elements of character, which the open Bible, revered and followed as the fathers revered and followed it originates and strengthens—and if we would maintain that progress; if we would have the Nation live more centuries; yea! if we would have the next find us a strong, united and happy people, we must retain the open Bible as a legal institution, insisting upon its use in all education regulated by law, and furthering it by all means consistent with law. This is the grand subject which I venture this day to suggest. A subject, which in fact, one can do little more than suggest, but which is super-eminently worthy of the careful thought of the distinguished society, a branch of which I have the honor to address in this Centennial year of its establishment.

The historical allegation that the reigns of Elizabeth and her successor date the development or first impetus of English greatness, of what peculiarly marks the English character, will be, I think, generally accepted. It was indeed a most remarkable period. The wars of the Roses had toughened the hearts and sinews of the commonalty. The sentiment and habit of duty which were the strength and recommendation of the Feudal system had increased the native manliness which seems inherent in the race. The habit of using martial weapons which the law required; the enforcement of industry; the punishment and contempt of sturdy vagrancy and tramps; the simplicity of diet and of dress; the strict requisition of honest weights, measures and prices, all enforced by statute; the fierceness in fight which won Cressy and Agincourt, the simple-hearted patriotism which made every man think first of England than of himself—these had made a people fit indeed for great things.

Over them ruled the Church. Their information in holy story was mainly given by plays and pageants, mystery plays, like those still used in Germany, dramas of religion or popular legends. Not over five millions of people existed in all England; their habits of life simple in the extreme.

Then came the discovery of printing, and in due time the printed Bible. First, Tyndale’s in 1526 to 1536, the mere possession of a copy of which was its owner’s passport to the flames; then Myles Coverdale’s in 1535, patronized by Lord Cromwell; then Cranmer’s, the first Bible published in England, a copy of which in 1540 was required to be placed in every Parish Church; then Whittingham’s, Parker’s or the Bishop’s Bible dated 1560 and 1568, and finally the Douay or Catholic version in 1609.

Simultaneously or shortly before these publications which mainly effected the English people, properly so called, came the outburst of English letters and talent. The lower world was on fire; the upper a series of constellations. In Church and State, in Poetry and Drama, in Philosophy and Statesmanship, in voyages and travels, in arts and in arms, the Elizabethan age stands grandly eminent, unapproached by aught else in the history of mankind. Think of a period, and that when population was so small, that could produce a Bacon, a Shakespeare, a Spencer and a Sydney, a Cecil, a Marlowe, a Johnson, a More, a Drake, and a Raleigh, besides a crowd of others whom it were a pleasure, could we stop to remember.

But the great feature of the period, especially that ranging between the middle of the reign of Elizabeth and the meeting of the Long Parliament, was the supremacy attained by the Bible. Says an eloquent and graphic writer of modern date, “England became the people of a book and that book was the Bible.” It was as yet the one English book which was familiar to every Englishman: it was read at churches, and read at home, and everywhere its words as they fell on ears which custom had not deadened to their force and beauty, kindled a startling enthusiasm. When Bishop Bonner set up the first six Bibles in St. Paul’s “many well disposed persons used much to resort to the hearing thereof, especially when they could get any that had an audible voice to read to them.” Says an old writer, “it was wonderful to see with what joy the book of God was received, not only among the learned sort, but generally all England over, among all the vulgar and common people: and with what greediness God’s word was read, and what resort to places where the reading of it was; everybody that could bought the book, or busily read it, or got others to read it to them if they could not themselves.”

Quoting again from Mr. Green’s history of the English people, “the popularity of the Bible was owing to other causes besides that of religion. The whole prose literature of England, save the forgotten tracts of Wycliffe, has grown up since the translation of the Scriptures by Tyndale and Coverdale. No history or romance, no poetry, save the little known verse of Chaucer, existed for any practical purpose in the English tongue, when the Bible was ordered to be set up in churches. Sunday after Sunday, day after day, the crowds that gathered around Bonner’s Bible in the nave of St. Paul’s; or the family group that hung on the words of the Geneva Bible in the devotional exercises at home, were leavened with a new literature. Legends and annals, war song and psalm, state rolls and biographies, the mighty voices of prophets, the parables of Evangelists, stories of mission journeys, of perils by the sea and among the heathen, philosophic arguments, apocalyptic visions, all were flung broadcast upon minds unoccupied for the most part by any rival learning. As a mere literary monument, the English version of the Bible remains the noblest example of the English tongue. Its perpetual use made it from the instant of its appearance the standard of our language. But for the moment its literary effect was less than its social. The power of the book over the mass of Englishmen showed itself in a thousand superficial ways, and in none more conspicuously, than in the influence it exerted on ordinary speech. It formed, we must repeat, the whole literature which was practically acceptable to ordinary Englishmen, and when we recall the number of phrases which we owe to our great authors, the bits of Shakspeare or Milton which unconsciously interweave themselves in our ordinary talk, we should better understand the strange mosaic of Biblical words and phrases which colored English talk two hundred years ago.  But far greater than its effect on literature or social phrase, was the effect of the Bible on the character of the people at large. Elizabeth might silence or tune the pulpits, but it was impossible for her to silence or tune the great preachers of justice, and mercy, and truth which spoke from the book which she had again opened for her people. The whole moral effect which is produced now-a-days by the religious newspaper, the tract, the essay, the lecture, the missionary report, the sermon, was then produced by the Bible alone. And its effect in this way, however dispassionately we examine it, was simply amazing. The whole temper of the nation was changed. A new conception of life and of man superseded the old. A new moral and religious impulse spread through every class. Literature reflected the general tendency of the time. “Theology rules there,” said Grotius, of England, only ten years after the Queen’s death.  “The whole nation became in fact a church.””

Out of all this, and under the action of many wonderful changes and providences, upon which we can look now and plainly see that the Hand of the Almighty directed, with bluff King Harry fighting with the Pope and appealing to the “Word against him, his self-will and sensuality thus giving aid to the triumph of the open Bible—with lovely Edward piously giving himself up to the completion of the Reformation—with Mary and Philip fanatically inaugurating persecution and lighting the fires of Smithfleld and Oxford—with Elizabeth in her turn contending with Spain, and with the aid of Providence dispersing and destroying the great hostile Armada—out of all this, I say, was evolved the Puritan—not the grim precision, morose, ascetic, penurious, canting and hypocritical which that word ordinarily calls up and describes, and which, in later years too often claimed the title; but the true and original Puritan, who was not necessarily or at first even a separatist, but adhered to the Church and its ministers, and sought honestly to reform, not to destroy. It was, said Fuller, “a name used to stigmatize all those who endeavored in their devotions to accompany the minister with a pure heart, and who were remarkably holy in their conversation. A Puritan was a man of severe morals, a Calvinist in doctrine, and (at last) a non-conformist to all the ceremonies and discipline of the Church, though he did not wholly separate from it.

What manner of men and women these were, or might be, consistently with this title, the same author from whom I quote graphically describes. Of one of them he chronicles the personal beauty which distinguished his youth, taking note from a wife’s description of him,“of his teeth, even and white as the purest ivory, his hair of brown, very thick-set in his youth, softer than the finest silk, curling with loose, great rings at the end.” Serious as was his temper in graver matters, he was fond of hawking and piqued himself on his skill in dancing and fence. His artistic taste showed itself in a critical love of “engravings, sculpture and all liberal arts,” as well as in the pleasure he took in his gardens, in the improvement of his grounds, in planting groves, and walks, and fruit trees! If he was diligent in his examination of the Scriptures “he had a great love for music, and often diverted himself with a viol, on which he played masterly.” The temper of the Puritan gentleman was just, noble and self-controlled. The larger geniality of the age that had passed away shrank into an intense tenderness within the narrow circle of the home. “He was as kind a father,” goes on the description already begun, “as dear a brother, as good a master, as faithful a friend as the world had. Passion was replaced by manly purity. Neither in youth nor ripe years could the fair or enticing woman draw Viim so much as into unnecessary familiarity or dalliance. Wise and virtuous women he loved, and delighted in all pure and holy and unblemished conversation with them, but so as never to excite scandal or temptation. Scurrilous discourse even among men he abhorred, and though he sometimes took pleasure in wit or mirth, yet that which was mixed with impurity he never could endorse. The play and willfulness of life, the Puritan regarded as unworthy of its character and end. His aim was to attain self-command; to be master of himself, of his thought and speech and acts A certain gravity and reflectiveness gave its tone to the lightest details of his daily converse with the world about him. His temper, quick as might be, was kept under strict control. In his discourse he was ever on his guard against talkativeness or frivolity, striving to be deliberate in speech, and ranking the words beforehand. His life was orderly and methodical, sparing of diet and self-indulgence; he rose early ; he never was at any time idle, and hated to see any one else so. The new sobriety and self-restraint marked itself even in his change of dress. Gorgeous colors and jewels disappeared. This no doubt reflected a certain loss of color and variety in life itself; but it was a loss compensated by solid gain. Greatest among them was the new conception of social equality. Their common call, their brotherhood in Christ, annihilated in the mind of the Puritans that overpowering sense of social distinctions which characterized a preceding age. The meanest peasant felt himself ennobled as a child of God. The proudest noble recognized a spiritual equality in the poorest saint. Of one of the representative men it is written” he had a loving and sweet courtesy to the poorest; he never disdained the meanest nor flattered the greatest.

Such was puritanism among the highest. Akin to it was Puritanism among the lower classes. Milton, John Bunyan, Penn, Hampden—these names suggest classes from which they sprung and show us who they were who laid the foundations of English and American greatness. It were delight to dwell upon personal descriptions and live awhile among such men and women. But it is impossible. We must endeavor to hasten on with the subject involved.

Nor can we stop to show how this sort of people changed; how their characteristics exaggerated, intensified, and became unnatural; how, in later days, piety became sanctimony; sobriety, moroseness; sense of right, tyrannous, self-will; frugality, covetousness; virtue, too often hypocrisy; toleration and charity, the very incarnation of their original merit, bitter intolerance and iron compression of opinion. All this, too true of latest puritanism, did not belong to the earlier. It evidently was a natural growth under the conditions of contest, legal repression and general conflict to which puritanism was exposed. But it was not a necessary one-—with judicious treatment, it would have been avoided.

The gardener, seeking successfully to propagate a noble plant, chooses the best stock at its healthiest prime, and then selecting the most promising bud, fullest of sap and vitality, he severs it, and carefully conveying and nursing it, in due time grafts it on some hardy stock, assured that it will permeate and renew it . And so the Divine Gardener and Creator selected the exact moment when the open Bible had done its noblest work, developed and bruit up the purest, holiest character, and then permitting wrongs and conditions likely to effect that object, He directed an emigration, a conveying of the best part of England to the distant wilderness, there to grow into a nation, like the other, yet even more progressive; of a freedom similar though perhaps more self-asserting, likely to produce a type of men with more active energy than that of those who remained; a nation which, daughter of England not only, but a child of England’s special freedom, the freedom of the open Bible, would take its place beside her as a bulwark of tolerant Christianity, a dispenser through all ages of the blessings to mankind which naturally spring therefrom.

No thoughtful man can fail to note the difference between the motives which generally brought the first settlers to America and those which have actuated other emigration. It was lust of gold which led the Spaniard to Mexico and Peru and Cuba and elsewhere, mingled with the stern missionary martyr spirit which distinguished Jesuit self-sacrifice. It was lust of gold which in our day settled California and Australia. It was lust of wealth and power which made Great Britain mistress of the Indies. But with those who from 1610 on to 1700, when large emigration well nigh ceased, defied the storms and sought homes in America, whence soever they came and with scarce an exception, whether from Holland, Sweden, Denmark or England, the motive of expatriation was the full enjoyment of the open Bible— of the right, that is, to believe, and to act upon their belief, of what it teaches; to enjoy the freedom of which it tells, and which it prompts; a freedom which establishes social equality among all men combined with and because of subjection to the will of God: a freedom which implies law, self-restraint, love and regard of one’s neighbor, mutual respect among all citizen’s; a freedom which prompts activity, self-improvement, progress; a freedom different in character from that which consists with Atheism, Theism or irreligion precisely in that point which has made these two nations so progressive, to wit, that man is intrinsically so capable of elevation that it is his duty ever to seek it.

In a word, the freedom here established, and preserved, and existing in the mother country by English law, illustrates at least in comparison with other nations civilized or barbarous which have it not, what is declared by the Divine Founder of Christianity: “if the truth therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.

I call it “the freedom of the open Bible“-—into which phrase enter two great doctrines: first, that it is not, as with many, merely a book, however to be admired and comparatively regarded, but the Bible—authoritative, true, supreme—next, that it is to be open—open to all, not to be kept for sacerdotal or other exposition merely—not to be followed in the way of some rather than of others, but for each human being to follow in his own way, according to private judgment, with such wisdom as he can acquire and on his own responsibility. Worshipful reverence for the Book, combined with toleration towards all who conscientiously follow it, whatever their differences, and with pitiful regard to such as conscientiously and respectfully impugn it, this is the foundation of the freedom which has done such great things for England and for America, and through them for the world.

How in each Nation this fundamental law of the open Bible, whose natural product is tolerant Christianity, has been established and preserved, through all the changes and chances of the life of nations, is a subject full of interest. In the British Isles, Puritanism, the first fruits as I have insisted of the open Bible, found an established Church, part of the law of the land; a pillar of the State, and of the Crown: in Scotland following one form of sectarian theology, in England another. Struggling for influence within the Church, it found obstacles, and then occurred contention which affected the character of both contestants. Antagonism shaped both, and neither party was the better in the end. But, for all that, with both the two great blessings remained: the Bible, in the Church as out of it was the Book, and religious belief of every sort was tolerated. True, exceptions to this toleration, or at least restrictions, on the manifestations of contrary belief, occurred both abroad and here. But this has always been temporary and at last rejected, and while we in America have always scouted an established Church with a remnant to-day of the rancor of the fathers against it, we yet may doubt whether, without the establishment of Churches in England, Scotland, Holland and other commonwealths, our form of Christianity could have been so strong, or civilization and progress so advanced and secure.

For the forces opposed to the open Bible were, and are even still, so organized and so supported by civil power, that like organization and support were perhaps necessary. The ends of Providence, one may almost think he sees, required that England, the chosen chief champion of Protestant Christianity and illustration of its effects, a European power with others to contend with or to influence, should be for all these centuries more of a monarchy than a republic, while America, afar off, to whom all must come over the seas, but with an inimitable future in its immense area, could with safety at once exemplify that republicanism to which the open Bible leads. And so in the Providence of the Most High, there came about for Britain the established Churches of the two Kingdoms, combined with their noble Universities and schools, while in America the hearts of men were led to the establishment of the system of Public Schools, in itself and by itself insufficient, except that in them, as everywhere else, there was permitted the open Bible, and except Colleges and Universities, developing a higher culture than is possible in Public Schools, were consecrated to positive instruction in religion.

It is these great agencies at home and abroad that have done the great work of this marvelous century; the Church, the College and the School, all fostered by the Civil Law and shaped by Providence with a skill in adaptation equal to that in physical culture for the production of the peculiar growths required there and here.

A word more on this topic, tiresome though I may be. The distinction of the British Constitution is its composite nature, the harmony with which it commingles all three of the known forms of government. Its outward strength lies in its aristocracy which remains in England, though it has perished almost everywhere else, and exerts a conservative force whose value can hardly be overestimated; especially because it supplies reward for merit and exertion, and thus constantly keeps up the existence of intellectual ability and strong character. The greatness of Britain is largely due to this. The number of men of force and culture there, as well as the extent of culture when it exists, is very great.

And yet it is not difficult to see that this is in a great degree the fruit of the Puritanism I have described, the true Puritanism, earliest offspring of the open Bible. It was this earnest religion that created most, if not all, of those numerous endowed schools everywhere to be found; in all of which religious teaching is a prominent feature, and which are the nurseries of Scholarship. From the lowest, meritorious pupils pass as a reward to some higher, one and from that to some still higher, until at last the peculiar few reach Oxford or Cambridge, where industry and success reap exalted reward in fellowships, in the Church, or even Parliamentary membership. And then professional success and merit are rewarded by office, honor and hereditary nobility, so that the aristocracy is constantly renewed with a new and vigorous growth—and the race of Englishman proper is perpetuated.

The system established here under the inspiration of the earliest settlers, and wrought into the frame work of our civil polity, was calculated to attain like results without repression of popular power. It is easy to see how it has shaped American characteristics and promoted American individualities. It had, like the other, several distinct means. First, the Public School, and in it always and everywhere and originally as a means of instruction, the open Bible. Second, Endowed Schools, Colleges and Seminaries, all for the most part under denominational influence, and all thus teaching religious truth. Third, Voluntary Churches with their educational adjuncts, the great source after all of popular and universal education, and upon which, today, the liberty and progress of America depend more directly than upon any other foundation. Through these we have as yet prospered; very much because of that feature of our Constitution, out-growth itself of evident Providence, by which we are divided into separate states or communities, and enabled thus more thoroughly to attend to these important fundamental forces. It is under their stimulus that American character is so independent, so self-asserting, so intelligent, so progressive, so universally, perhaps, audacious in every field of thought and action. The differences between American and English character are plainly traceable to the universal diffusion of education among us—to its comparatively superficial character—to the exclusively materialistic nature of the rewards to be gained by exertion. And alas, with all, there is clear experience of one great inherent defect: so great that unless it is met speedily, the end of all may come, that the Bible which created and shaped our freedom, and veneration and love for which, originated our schools, is, practically, no longer open there; is in fact, in many places, the only book legally and by name forbidden and excluded. Such a possibility, it is plain, never occurred to the fathers, whether of the seventeenth or the eighteenth century. Had they dreamed of it, they would have framed our Constitution so as always to avoid it. A horror of religious tyranny, an enthusiasm for religious freedom and for the formularies of religious toleration, led them to forget the dangers which might spring from the toleration of systematic irreligion and from the acts of those who, too highly valuing their own creed, first undermine public education by obtaining the exclusion of religion from Schools, and then prepare to attack the system as therefore positively and absolutely injurious.

My Fellow Citizens: If I have seemed thus far desultory and not practical, I trust it has been only in appearance. I meet you on the threshold of a new century, a century called by the world the second century of the Republic, but really the third, substantially, of the formation of the American nation, a graft, yet a separate stock from England in this continent, then the region of vastness and mystery. The train of thought I have thus far followed I trust is natural and pertinent. The chief distinctions of the century; to whom they specially belong; that they have resulted from the natural action, under Providence, of that peculiar sort of freedom which is British in contradistinction to that of any other nationality; the origin and individualities of that freedom, its intrinsic characteristics and worth: how it has been nurtured and maintained abroad—how here among ourselves; these are the great topics at which I have glanced, suggesting them merely to your future reflection, and all along with a practical purpose, to wit, to sound the alarm for the future of the Public School, and of the country, whose institutions confessedly depend upon it, and to appeal to all to uphold and extend collegiate education under denominational influences as a means beyond the reach of political majorities, whereby the open Bible may still be a positive institution, its precepts positively inculcated, and the freedom and progress which depend upon it thus perpetuated. For, if we will’ only observe and think, we must plainly see that, so far, no freedom has lasted, anywhere, where there was not the open Bible—that is to say, the Christian religion, with perfect toleration.

It is just here that I am met with the ordinary and plausible objection that the American Constitution acknowledges no religion, and does not even mention a God, and that its only reference to it is the amendment ” that Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,” the argument being that nothing which teaches religion can be done under the provisions of law. To which there is easy reply : first, that the subject is one not intended to belong to Congress, nor to the national Legislature; that it concerns internal police, a topic entirely reserved to the States; that if this is not fully correct still the very amendment, construed by the established rule “Expressio unius est exclusio, alterius,” (Translation: Expression of one is the exclusion of the other) legalizes all legislation by Congress on the subject of religion not implying its establishment nor the prohibition of its free exercise—and that it is to the Christian religion beyond all doubt that this amendment relates. And this view is strengthened by a later amendment which makes a difference in guilt between those in arms against it who have taken an oath (appealing thereby to God) to support the government, and those who have not. I add that Congress has, from the beginning, legislated and acted so as to acknowledge religion as by requiring an oath of office and oaths from witnesses and by punishing perjury, by establishing by rule the opening of their sessions with prayer, and by constituting chaplains, both for themselves and for troops, and manifold other acknowledgments of the Supreme Being and the Christian religion which He has ordained.

And going back to documents still operative, except so far as expressly and by necessary implication repealed, we find the articles of confederation recite that “it has pleased the Great Governor of the world to incline the hearts of the Legislatures of the various States to ratify this perpetual union;” we find the Declaration of Independence asserting the being of God, His Creation and the equality He established among men, appealing to Him as the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of the intentions of its signers, and expressing that they rely on “Divine Providence for protection” in the struggle they initiated; we find Congress after the Revolution passing the celebrated ordinance of 1787, for the government of the territory Northwest of the River Ohio, and declaring certain articles of compact between the original States and the people and States in the territory, forever unalterable save by common consent, in order to “extending the fundamental principles of civil and religious liberty which form the bases whereon these republics, their laws and constitutions are erected, and to fix and establish those principles as the basis of all law and constitutions, and governments which forever shall be formed in the said territory;” and among these articles is the following: “Religion, morality and knowledge being necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind, Schools and the means of education shall forever be encouraged.” If these citations, with the practice of the Continental Congress and that which succeeded it, the successive Presidents and the various Departments, Executive and Judicial, all in acknowledgment of the claims of the Christian religion, do not negative the allegation that the Nation, as such, has no religion, it is difficult to say how such a charge can as to any nation be disproved.

The ordinance of 1787, when it mentioned religion and morality and made schools and education having them for its purpose or effect an unalterable compact between the old Thirteen and all its Northwest future, referred to the Christian religion; that religion which was held by all the people then within the newly-established confederation. That ordinance remained in force, notwithstanding the subsequent Constitution, and by it the government positively declared that it had a religion; that that religion was Christian, and that it was forever to remain and be promoted by schools.

But this argument for the Bible in the schools does not stop with the consideration of the national Constitution. As already said, the subject does not ex natura (Trans: From Nature) belong to Congress nor to national matters; it concerns internal police, a topic entirely reserved to the States, and when we consider the question in this light, all doubt dissipates. For those who will study the history of the various Colonies, will find in each that the maintenance and propagation of the Christian religion was one of their chief motives. If this was conspicuously true in New England, it was also true elsewhere, and especially in this our State of New Jersey. The Dutch who peopled Bergen and Somerset, the Quakers who found their home at Salem and Burlington, as well as the English Puritans who settled at Elizabeth, Newark and Woodbridge, and the Scotch who came later direct to Raritan Bay, all brought with them a deep sense of religion and sought its perpetuation. The laws of the early colonists stamped their form of Christianity on the commonwealth, and they have never been repealed. Our latest constitution formally adopts the Common law of which it is part, and in an illustration of it there yet appears upon our statute book a law in the words following : “all impostors in religion such as personate our Saviour Jesus Christ, or suffer their followers to worship or pay divine honors, or terrify, delude or abuse the people by false denunciation of judgments, shall, on conviction, suffer fine and imprisonment.” And another: “if any person shall willfully blaspheme the holy name of God, by denying, cursing or contumaciously reproaching His being or providence, or by cursing or by contumaciously reproaching Jesus Christ or the Holy Ghost, or the Christian religion or the holy word of God (that is, the canonical Scriptures contained in the books of the Old and New Testament) or by profane scoffing at or exposing them or any of them to contempt and ridicule, any person so offending shall, on conviction, be punished by fine,” or in State’s Prison. The first constitution of the State, whose date is July 2, 1776, a Declaration of Independence prior to that in Philadelphia, made by a convention convened a month before and in session a century ago this day, declares in Article xix. that “there shall be no establishment of any one religious sect in this Colony, in preference to another, and that no Protestant inhabitant of this Colony shall be denied the enjoyment of any civil rights merely on account of his religious principles, but that all persons professing a belief in the faith of any Protestant sect shall fully and freely enjoy every privilege and immunity enjoyed by others, their fellow subjects.

The present Constitution, confirmed June 29,1844, begins with the fitting preamble, “We, the people of the State of New Jersey, grateful to Almighty God for the civil and religious liberty which He hath so long permitted us to enjoy, and looking to Him for a blessing upon our endeavors to secure and transmit the same unimpaired to succeeding generations, do ordain and establish this Constitution.” Succeeding sections secure and perpetuate the fund for free schools for the equal benefit of all the people of the State. Can a reasonable man contend that in endeavoring to secure and transmit civil and religious liberty, a people grateful to Almighty God for it, and looking to Him for a blessing, can begin by driving His word from the schools, the chosen means of securing this security?

It is objected that this fund is for the equal benefit of all, and that if the Bible be in the school, those who deny it, or oppose its inculcation, pay tax without a benefit. I answer, that the context describes the public school as for the equal benefit of all, and so it is if all may, if they please, have advantage from it. Whatever the reason for which I do not choose to use it, it is my fault, if not my loss. I pay taxes for roads which I never use, for sewers with which I will not connect, for gas which I will not introduce. All taxes suppose equal benefit to all the assessed. No one can resist payment if by possibility, living within the district, he may have the benefit he refuses. , It is insisted by some that no use of the Bible can be made without in some degree teaching the opinions, held by the teacher, and that therefore the rights of sects are involved. The answer is that the risk is nothing to the harm which mast occur if anything like morals or religion is excluded from the schools. Beside, the argument would interdict all legal proceedings. Why should it be that the Bible should be acknowledged by oaths taken upon it, its Author daily appealed to as the final Judge of the World; belief in a future state of rewards and punishments made the test of the capacity to speak truth; and yet the Book and the name of the Almighty be excluded from the schools. What is this but to teach irreligion? And what is that but to make education a curse, instead of a blessing? Says wise and good Sir Thomas Moore in his Utopia: “If you allow your people to be badly taught, their morals to be corrupted from their childhood, and then when they are men punish them for the very crimes to which they have been trained in childhood—what is this, but first to make them thieves, and then to punish them?

Some say: divide the cost of public education among the sects, on condition of their maintaining the schools. Such a course would be resigning to others a duty which belongs to the State. Its result would be the abandonment of the fundamental principle of the Republic, expressed by Burke in the oft-repeated saying that “education is the cheap defense of nations;” more directly, that public safety requires the State to see to it that her citizens are fit to rule. In truth, the State ought to compel every child to attend some school. She cannot confide to others a duty so vital.

I should be ashamed, fellow citizens, to apologize for the seriousness of my subject . Its importance and propriety cannot be over estimated. No Fourth of July should be disgraced by bombast and self-adulation by exhilarants or anaesthetics. It is the National Sabbath, and like a sabbath, should be dedicated, not simply to rest and joy, but also to self-improvement. But this Centennial anniversary is a day of peculiar solemnity. Its arrival is a test of our national stability. We have invited the world to meet and rejoice with us. Only through God’s; mercy does it come to us. We have been snatched as the brands. from the very fire. It might have been a day of silence, of; shame and despair. The occasion calls for gravity, self-examination, truth, resolution of amendment, as well as for thankfulness and hope. Honest self-scrutiny forbids unmixed confidence. True, the nation has passed through many dangers. Foreign war has only strengthened it. Out of the terrific civil conflict from which we have just emerged, whose embers still smoke and every now and then almost blaze, it has come, politically, stronger than ever. But while the edifice stands erect when the people of the earth doubtful through the amazing struggle, are astonished and in view of the great things enacted before their eyes, the great mountain, whose top stone has been brought forth with shoutings, cry, “grace unto it,” while we hail the day as a minister of fraternity—a day of hand-shaking that is no longer a bloody chasm—a day of the fatted calf without a jealous brother, there are suddenly revealed signs of evil, occasions of grave anxiety. What timber in our edifice is sound? What stone beyond risk of crumbling? What spikes free from rust? What fastenings wholly secure? How dreadfully are we not illustrating the wisdom of Plato the Divine, when he said “as long as beggars hungering and thirsting for office, rush into the administration of public affairs, political life will be but a fierce contest for shadows, a strife for civil preeminence, as though this were in reality the highest good: laws will be but the remedies of quack physicians, giving temporary relief, yet ultimately aggravating what they cannot cure, whilst the rottenness of the foundation will finally bring down the superstructure, whatever may be the external form to which its security may be fondly confided.” The passage I quote seems well nigh inspired. Corruption, moral rottenness is the great danger of this Republic. Not in politics alone; far less in the action of one party or the other. What we find there, is but illustrative of what is elsewhere, yea, everywhere, Materialism is so triumphant. It has so eaten into the heart of all good things–I had almost said, of all good men. The higher life is so unpopular, so derided, so despised. What is generally desired that is not gilded? How few despise glitter and sound? How insane is the appetite for success? How dolefully do we all gaze around, searching for men—men such as we have read of—such as some of us have known—fit to be called statesmen. I do not say we have none. Thank God! we have, but, comparatively, how few. Most are but aspirants for personal success—the success of sound, of glitter, of shoddy style. It is the fault of our educational habits that their scope is so contracted. We hurry into action. The sooner at work, every man thinks, the better. So men are in action unequipped. And even the best rush by the shortest road towards their meditated goal. How many wait and seek the formation of character, make that their motive, and then seek or accept life’s tasks as duties. And so. general rottenness goes on, till even the horrid expositions on which the press batters to-day would be almost welcomed as necessary to the hope of better things, if it were not for the fear that familiarity with scandal and filth may breed contempt for evil accusation.

It is in view of this underlying want of moral tone, cropping out in every quarter that I have chosen and press my subject to-day. I have endeavored to speak as they would speak who laid the foundations of our freedom and progress, the men of 1664 who once walked these streets, who laid its broad avenues and parks, who established here religion and law, whose characteristics still live recognizable in many a descendant, whose lives and plans still contribute to the happiness we enjoy. I have endeavored to speak as they would speak who rejoiced one hundred years ago over the news of the Declaration we celebrate—a Declaration to which they came slowly, unwillingly, only from conscientious belief in its necessity, in calm religious resolution.

I have endeavored to speak as he would speak, chief promoter of the subsequent constitution, and so most of all, the Father of his Country.

Hear this Proclamation, made immediately on the completion of the Constitution, as an illustration of his views on the question whether the nation has a religion, and how intimately that religion should be connected with education.

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.
A PROCLAMATION.

Whereas, it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the Providence of Almighty God, to obey His Will, to be grateful for His Benefits, and to humbly implore His Protection and Favor; and whereas, both Houses of Congress have, by their joint Committee, requested me “To recommend to the people of the United States a day of public Thanksgiving and Prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful Hearts the many and signal Favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a Form of Government for their Safety and Happiness;” Now, Therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday, the twenty-sixth day of November next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the Service of that great and glorious Being, who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble Thanks for His kind Care and Protection of the People of this Country previous to their becoming a Nation ; for the signal and manifold Mercies, and the favorable Interposition’s of His Providence in the Cause and Conclusion of the late War ; for the great Degree of Tranquility, Union and Plenty which we have since enjoyed; for the peaceable and rationale Manner in which we have been enabled to establish Constitutions of Government for our Safety and Happiness, and particularly the National one now lately instituted; for the civil and religious Liberty with which we are blessed, and the Means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful Knowledge; and, in general, for all the great and various Favors which He hath been pleased to confer upon us.

And also, That we may then unite in most humbly offering our Prayers and Supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations, and beseech Him to pardon our National and other Transgressions; to enable us all, whether in public or private Stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually ; to render our National Government a blessing to all the People, by constantly being a Government of wise, just and constitutional Laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed; to protect and guide all Sovereigns and Nations, (especially such as have shewn kindness unto us) and to bless them with good Government, Peace and Concord; to promote the Knowledge and Practice of true Religion and Virtue, and the Increase of Science among them and us; and generally, to grant unto all Mankind such a Degree of temporal Prosperity as He alone knows to be best.

Given under my Hand, at the City of New-York, the third day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand, seven hundred and eighty-nine.

G. WASHINGTON.

I would speak the sentiments of these fathers on this solemn day. The price of liberty is eternal vigilance. It is ever in danger. Now from foreign enmity—now from intestine strife— at other times, as now, from the growth of corruption—irreverence for right as right, materialism, defiling everything, destroying true manhood, disgusting the good and competent with public affairs, and leaving the State to be managed and directed by cunning incompetency, seeking and using place for profit, scoffing at duty,—in a word, from moral rottenness. And the escape and, blessed be God there will be escape—I speak with no fear, for God is with us—from ruin to come, the ruin that has befallen other republics, the ruin that has so far been avoided, because our freedom is that which comes of the open Bible, is restoration and increase of its dominance and influence. Stand by it, fellow citizens, as the true Palladium of your liberties. Maintain the schools—and maintain it in the schools. Let it be an institution there, recognized and revered. Thus much can we do as citizens, nor little as it seems can we over estimate its extent. But this must not be all. In every way must we seek to saturate the community with Christian morality. The Church, the Sunday School, Colleges and Academies where religion is directly taught, the support of these is not only our duty as Christians. It is our duty also as patriots. The very infidel, if he loves his country, will aid in the promulgation of tolerant Christianity and the morality it inculcates. For, let no man doubt that just in proportion to the extent that that morality prevails, just in proportion as we remain the land of the open Bible—in that proportion, and that only, may we be assured that our freedom and progress will last, and that another century will find the Nation one great, happy, republican and free.

Originally titled: THE OPEN BIBLE; OR, TOLERANT CHRISTIANITY. The Source and Security of American Freedom and Progress. An Oration—By Hon. Courtlandt Parker, Delivered At Newark, N. J., July 4TH, 1876.

See also: PATRIOT SONS OF PATRIOT SIRES by Rev. Samuel Francis Smith 1808-1895
Joseph Baldwin: Address 1892, to National Teachers Association in New York
The Consequence of Bad Legal Precedent in American Legislation
TRUE FREEDOM! A Poem by James Russell Lowell 1819-1891

THE BEACON FIRES OF LIBERTY by Hon. George Lear July 4, 1876

George Lear 1818-1884The Ship of Liberty on which we embarked 1776!

An Oration By Hon. George Lear (1818-1884), Delivered At Doylestown, Pa., July 4th, 1876.

Ladies And Gentlemen: When the merchant turns his attention to foreign commerce, he designs a craft for ocean navigation, and addresses himself to the task of procuring sound materials and the most approved plans of naval architecture. The skeleton of a ship is erected on the stocks, and its ribs covered with oak or iron, well secured with bolts, having neither flaw nor blemish. The hull is finished with all the qualities of strength and symmetry, and, upon an appointed day, in the presence of invited guests, with a virgin stationed on the bow with a bottle containing something similar “to the nectar which Jupiter sips,” the hawsers are cast loose, the blocks and wedges are removed, and as the ponderous craft glides down the inclined plane, the bottle is broken as the name is pronounced in baptismal solemnity, and, with a rush and a plunge, she enters the water, and floats high upon its surface, uncontrolled and uncontrollable except by extrinsic agencies.

But being in its proper element, the next care is to fit it for navigation by the addition of masts and spars, booms and yards, ropes and sails, until the unmanageable hulk becomes a full rigged ship, with her sails bent and her pennons flying, and “she walks the water like a thing of life.” Friends are again invited, viands are prepared, and the trial excursion takes place. She sails gaily down the bay to the strains of inspiring music, the sails swell with the freshening breeze, and the pennons wave graceful in the wind as she approaches the waters of the broad ocean. Fearlessly she essays the navigation of the billowy deep; and for the first time she is “afloat on the fierce rolling tide.” she is pronounced staunch and sea-worthy, and returns to ship her first cargo, and enter upon the practical business for which she was designed and constructed.

One hundred years ago a band of patriots known by the name of the Continental Congress, unskilled and inexperienced in State craft, with fearless and almost reckless disregard of consequences, launched their bark upon the unknown and turbulent sea of revolution. Not lured like Jason by the hope of the recovery of the Golden Fleece, or like the merchant by the prospect of wealth—not investing their private fortunes only in the prospect of private gain or personal ambition—but in the cause of human freedom and the rights of man they “mutually pledged to each other their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.” It was not the mere question of the sacrifice of a fortune, or, in the event of success, untold wealth. It was the launch of the ship of State upon an unknown sea, with fortunes, lives and honor aboard, the venture being the establishment of a nation based on the principle of human equality; or, in the event of a failure, the loss of fortune, life and honor. Without any prospect of personal gain under any circumstances, the stake was a nation to freedom or halters to the projectors.

After years of untold sacrifices and privations, a nation was organized, and human freedom as the basis of a government was established. But the mere military success of the Revolution was not the end. Martial courage, heroic endurance and unselfish patriotism could trample kingly crowns in the dust, and tear the purple robes from the shoulders of royalty, but the destinies of a nation of people, covering almost a continent, were left in their hands, with no one born to govern, and with no experience in any one in the art of government.

The ship of State had made a successful trial trip, and had weathered the gale of military contention and strife; but her crew was composed of men accustomed to obey and not to rule. The nations of the earth pronounced her staunch and seaworthy, and recognized her as a co-ordinate existence. But the question constantly recurred, can she sustain herself in midocean in the long voyage of national existence, with an untrained and undisciplined crew, in the calms of financial depression, and among the rocks and shoals of mutiny and internal dissension? We are here to-day, as a portion of the passengers who sailed on that good craft, to answer that question. We have withstood the shock of battle, the ocean’s storm, the tropic’s calm, “the broadside’s reeling rack,” the crew’s rebellion, and the hidden dangers of the deep, and with all hands on deck and the flag flying at the fore, we dance over the waves and ride into the harbor at the end of a voyage of a hundred years, with the ease and grace of excursionists on a summer sea.

With all our opening disadvantages, with fortunes broken and general financial prostration, the nation entered upon a career of self-government, then a doubtful experiment, and this is the only republic in the history of the world which has lived to celebrate the centenary of its birth. The problem of government by the people was looked upon as the fond dream of visionaries and theorists designed to captivate the ear of the multitude by the resounding periods of the rhetorician, and shed a glamour over the resonant numbers of the poet’s songs of liberty; but practically an impossible hope not to be realized in human society.

When the united colonies struck their blow for independence and in the cause of human freedom, the population of the whole country was not equal to that of Pennsylvania to-day. And in useful productions and the multifarious industries which render a people self-sustaining, they were far behind the present resources of this great State. They were not only dependent politically upon the mother country, and governed by laws in the enactment of which they had no voice, but they were commercially dependent . They depended on other countries for many of the necessaries of life. They had a vast territory and a soil of great natural fertility, but its products had to be shipped to other countries to be put into the forms and fabrics for the use of the people. Under such circumstances, the declaration of independence was an act like that of a commander landing his army on a hostile coast, and burning his ships to cut off the possibility of retreat . It was a bold act, but it was not done recklessly, under a temporary excitement, by men who were ambitious to perform a dramatic act of evanescent courage before the eyes of the world, but by men who were brave, prudent, patriotic and wise.

There is a system of compensation which runs through all human transactions, and it often happens that what seems an element of weakness is a bulwark of strength. The comparative poverty and helpless dependence of the colonies was a bond of union and strength when the connection with Great Britain was once severed. Having to rely upon themselves, they became more firmly knitted together, and this self-dependence increased their trust and confidence in each other. While their privations were greater, their patriotism burned the brighter, and they vied with each other in acts of unselfish heroism, and in the darkest hours of the protracted struggle, the gloom was illuminated by deeds of fortitude, endurance and valor which filled the land with their glory, and challenged the admiration of the world.

But this is not a time nor a place for a history of that war, or a recapitulation of its conspicuous events. The pledge of the colonists to each other and to mankind was faithfully redeemed. The scattered colonies became the nucleus of a great nation. But war leaves its scars as well upon the body politic as upon the warrior. The new government was bankrupt. The currency of the country was worthless. The new system of government was to be organized by men who were without experience in the art of government, with large debts and an empty treasury. Here again, more conspicuously than in the war, the poverty of the colonists was an element of strength, and the nursery of patriotism. With no money in the treasury and few resources to raise revenue to pay their debts and carry on the public business, they had their compensation in the fact that there was nothing to steal, and consequently the new government did not beget a race of thieves. Men who were conspicuous for the purity of their lives, their sterling integrity and patriotism and their exalted abilities were sought for and placed in the highest positions of political trust. In those days, it was the belief of the people that the true way to get money was to earn it; that the acquisition of wealth was a slow and toilsome process; and that the evidence of it was the possession and ownership of substantial property, or the glittering cash, and not a man’s ability to place on the market and keep afloat the largest amount of commercial paper.

With these homely but sound notions of political and personal economy, the people addressed themselves to the task of repairing their fortunes and building up the industries of the country on a firm and substantial bases. Economy in the household and in the government was the rule, and no luxuries were indulged in until the money was earned to pay for them. The habits of the people under a government of and by the people stamped their impress upon the administration of public affairs. Honesty, economy, and public and private virtue were essential elements of respectability, and the general rule of action in public and private life; and profligacy the exception. Cultivating such principles, with a boundless territory, of teeming soil and a free government, we could not fail to be a prosperous and a happy people.

“There is no poverty where Freedom is—
The wealth of nature is affluence to us all,”

Having started our ship of State under these auspices, we have tided over the first century of our national existence. On this glad day of our hundredth anniversary, while celebrating the most important event in the history of human governments which has ever shed its influence on surrounding nations, and lighted up the dark places of the world, let us like true sailors take our reckoning, and improve the occasion of our rejoicing in this year of jubilee, by ascertaining whether our good ship is on her true course, and to so trim her sails, repair her hull, lay her fairly before the wind, and replenish her stores, that she may live through the calms of financial and business depressions, weather the gales of internal strife, avoid the rocks and shoals of foreign and domestic wars, and repel the attacks of all piratical crafts at home and abroad, during the future progress of her voyage over an unexplored and unknown sea; for our future course is not to be a return, and we are not to he listlessly on the water to be borne back by the refluent tide to the harbor whence we sailed. Our course is not backward but forward and onward.

And what are the conclusions from our observations? What do tho soundings indicate? What is the outlook from the binnacle? Does the gallant craft still respond to the turn of the helmsman’s wheel like a thing of intelligence? Do the “waves bound beneath her like a steed that knows his rider?” Is she followed by hungry sharks ready to devour her crew, or cheered by the presence of the graceful sea gull, with his wavy motion and virgin plumage?

These questions are asked more to excite reflection than for answers; but it may not be amiss to answer so far as can be done by general conclusions. The stability of the present and the hope of the future are found in the underlying principles of our government—the universal equality and inalienable rights of all men. Human rights arc the rights of all men, and of each man, and they cannot be taken away except so far as he surrenders them. Governments are organized for the protection of human society, but they derive all “their just powers from the consent of the governed.” To this extent a man may surrender his natural rights. The government is from an internal, and not an external source. Man rules himself under our system, and for convenience may do it by a delegated power, to be conferred and resumed at stated intervals. His laws, therefore, axe of his own making, and while it is his duty as a member of society to obey them, he has the power of revocation whenever he finds them unjust or oppressive.

Under such a form of government, the light of armed revolution does not exist. That is only justifiable against a power which he did not create, and which seeks to control or disregard his rights without his consent. The theory of government based upon an hereditary succession of rulers is not only subversive of the rights of man, but is an irreverent usurpation of divine power. The nurture of a sovereign in the cradle, destined while a puling infant to be the ruler of a nation, whether an idiot, a tyrant, a statesman, or a fool, is as impious as it is absurd. In organized society man is the source of political power for self-government, although we all acknowledge “a higher law;” and however much the term may be abused by speculative theorists, and however much the expression may be distorted by or in the interests of political mountebanks, all jurists and law makers recognize a law above human laws, the leges legem, to which all human laws must conform and be made subservient. But that law does not take away any human rights. It fosters and protects them; and, therefore, it cannot confer the right to rule on hereditary sovereigns. And this principle of equality in rights is universal, and applies to all men, without regard to nationality, creed or color. Whether Caucasian, Teuton, Celt, African, or Mongol, this question is equally applicable, and it cannot be abrogated by any power beneath that which thundered the laws from Mount Sinai. Man may forfeit his right to life and liberty by his crimes, but this can be done only by the laws in which he has a voice in making. The stability of the present and the hopes of the future are based upon the maintenance of this principle in its integrity; but it is so firmly seated and so interwoven with every fibre of our existence, that the faith and the hope seem to be well founded.

While it is true that there does not seem to be that rigid economy, and unselfish patriotism which characterized the founders of the government, I do not belong to the croakers who believe that all public and private virtue, wisdom and patriotism died with the past. It is an unfortunate disposition, and leads to much unhappiness, to be constantly distrusting every one in public and in private life. I would prefer to be occasionally cheated rather than deal with every man as if I believed him to be a rogue. Under our system, the government will be as good as the people, and the evils which creep into the administration of public affairs begin at the root.

People and rulers have departed to some extent from that simplicity which should be the characteristic of a republic; and by extravagance and luxury—if not riotous living—indulge in expenditures and incur heavy liabilities, to meet which they indulge in speculation, and essay to make money of each other, where there is no money, their efforts to grow rich by a short and rapid process result in bankruptcy. They then blame the government, and clamor for legislation to cure the evil, when they can get none from that source. Their remedy is in their own hands, and no where else; but public officials and ambitious men speculate upon their anxiety, flatter their hopes, spend their money and lead them astray. In one view, the people give too much attention to their government. In another, not enough. They depend too much upon the government to mend their broken fortunes. They give too little attention to the kind of men they select, and depend too much upon creeds and platforms.

The evil will go on until it will cure itself in the end. I can lay down a rule which, if rigidly followed, would cure many of the evils which are now charged upon the government. Let every man attend diligently to his own business. Earn the money upon which he lives, and earn it before he expends it. Risk no money in a speculation which he cannot afford to lose, and place none in a doubtful venture but his own. If this course be strictly followed by every man, we will scarcely know we have a government, it will sit so lightly upon our shoulders, and we will soon discover that our business and our fortunes do not depend so much upon the government as upon ourselves. There are more people than is generally supposed who pursue this course; but they are very much hindered in their slow but certain progress by the large class who pursue a different course. Men who spend money they never earned, or owned, must spend that which belongs to others. For many live on what others have toiled to earn. This is one of the great causes of the crippled condition of the industries of our State.

But while these things retard our prosperity periodically, they do not shake the foundation principles of our government, or endanger its permanency. The wrecks which float upon the surface are but the broken fragments of the argosies which have been drawn into the insatiate whirlpool of mad speculation, dashed in pieces on the rocks beneath, and cast up by the restless waters, a warning to reckless adventurers.

The system of fast living and the appropriation of trust funds for private use, which ultimately leads to the theft of public money, are the crying evils of the times. While bolts, and bars, and locks can protect us against common thieves and burglars, we have no security against official thieves except care in the selection of men for official positions of trust and confidence, and the rigid and inexorable enforcement of the law against its infractors, with a merciless punishment of criminals who betray their trusts. And the country is waking up to the importance of this subject and a better era is dawning. “It is always the darkest the hour before day.”

But this particular manifestation of crime is not peculiar to our times, and does not touch the fundamental principles of our government.

The Great Master was betrayed for a bribe, but Christianity still lives; there was treason in the army of the Revolution, and yet the colonists triumphed; and there have been defaulters among public officials and corruption in high places in all ages of the world. In our country the remedy against it is in the hands of the people. In nearly all others they have little, if any, control over the public servants. There is, therefore, no reason to despair of our institutions in view of certain manifestations of corruption among those in positions of trust and confidence. When the crime becomes intolerable the people will rise to the necessity of the occasion, and apply the remedy which they hold in their hands.

But the question arises, are we in, worse condition in this respect than we were in what we regarded as the balmy days of the Republic? We have more facilities for obtaining news than formerly. With our telegraphs and railroads, news travels with great rapidity, and especially bad news; and our innumerable newspapers gather that which is the most sensational and exciting. The quiet deeds of charity and benevolence, the self sacrificing act of heroism, and the thousands of events in private life which ennoble human actions are unknown to the public. The turbulent elements of society come to the surface. The agents of crime get into the courts, and their deeds are heralded everywhere, and newspapers containing the revolting details are constantly thrust before our eyes. “The evil that men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones.” We hear and read all that is evil, but little of the good.

And when we take into consideration the difference in the population of this country between this day and a hundred years ago, being a difference of at least twelve to one, and the fact that evil makes more noise in proportion than the good, it becomes a very doubtful question whether criminals and crimes have more than kept pace with the population. That certain offenses against law have assumed a grave magnitude is a thing to be deplored, but in the presence of the good which emanates from our beneficent government they are but as the spots on the disk of the sun, which mellow the light by breaking the fierce rays of its overpowering effulgence.

But there is no reason to believe that the world is retrograding in morals or honesty. Such a concussion would be an admission that civilization, intelligence and Christianity impede the progress of the world and are disadvantageous to mankind; for there are more schools and seminaries, more books to read; more people to read and understand them, more acts of benevolence and charity, more culture and refinement, and more people who worship God to-day than at any other period since the “morning stars sang together” at man’s creation. That there are base, gross and wicked people is no new phenomenon. They have infested society accursed the world since the day when our original progenitor partook of “that forbidden fruit whose mortal taste brought death into the world and all our woe, with loss of Eden.

But the beacon fires of liberty burn as brightly to-day as they did on the morning of the Fourth of July, 1776, and the people of the country cherish the principles upon which the brave old patriots of that day established us as a free and independent nation. This morning has been ushered in over this broad land with the booming of cannon, the chimes of bells, the blare of the bugle, and the joyful greetings and proud huzzas of the people. These demonstrations are hearty, earnest and profound. They are the spontaneous outbursts of patriotism—the grand anthems bursting from the full hearts of a free, loyal and intelligent people.

Why should we not look forward to the future with wellfounded hopes, inspired by the success of the past? The staunch ship of State cannot encounter more difficult navigation in the coming century than in the past. She has encountered foes from without and enemies within. She has lain within the trough of the sea, and withstood the earth-shaking broadside; and while she trembled in every timber and groaned throughout her hull at the “diapason of the cannonade,” after the blue smoke of battle had drifted away in curling clouds on the breeze, we looked aloft, and joyfully exclaimed that “our flag is still there!” When the waves of rebellion, with fearful fury crashed upon her in mid-ocean, they were broken and scattered in foam on her hull, and died away in eternal silence at her keel. In calm and storm, in peace and war, our goodly craft has braved a hundred years “the battle and the breeze.

To-day all hands are piped on deck to receive instructions and inspiriting encouragement for a continuance of the voyage for another century. The winds and tides are fair, the skies are bright, and the sails are set. Gently swaying to the billows motion, we round the headland, and boldly enter upon the broad expanse of waters. The world of old dynasties, which jeered when we essayed our first voyage, became astonished at our progress, and their astonishment turned into amazement as we pursued our successful course. That amazement, as we boldly head out for the open sea on the second century, assumes the aspect of awe. Such a craft, manned by such a crow, carrying a flag which is known and recognized as the emblem of freedom everywhere, is a dangerous emissary among the subjects of kings, emperors, and despots of every form. Wherever that flag floats, whether waving languidly in the gentle zephyr of the tropics, or fluttering amid the ice crags of arctic desolation, it is hailed as the emblem of freedom and the symbol of the rights of man.

To show our influence on the people in the remote corners of the earth, a citizen of the United States, during the trying times of the rebellion, was traveling on the northern coast of Norway; and, landing from a small steamer at a trading town in the early morning, before the inhabitants were astir, found three fishermen from Lapland waiting at the door of a store to do some small business in trade. The fishermen appeared to be a father and two sons. They were dressed in skins of the reindeer, and appeared to be half barbarian, illiterate people. They were introduced to the American, and when the older of the Laplanders learned that the distinguished stranger was a citizen of this country, his countenance lighted up with an expression of eager intelligence as he asked: “Are you from beyond the great sea?” Upon being answered in the affirmative, he exclaimed: “Tell me, tell me, does liberty still live?” He expressed great satisfaction upon being assured that it did.

If on the coasts of the northern frozen seas, in a land of almost perpetual night, an illiterate fisherman feels such an eager interest in the question of the continued vitality of liberty, what a dangerous messenger will be that ensign of the Ship of State flashing “its meteor glories” among the thrones, crowns, and sceptres of the world. The subjects and victims of oppression will catch “inspiration from its glance,” and learning that liberty still lives, will pass the inspiring watchword from man to man. And the cry that “Liberty still lives” will be the world’s battle shout of freedom, and the rallying watchword of deliverance.

“And the dwellers in the rocks and in the Tales,
Shall about It to each other, and the mountain tops
From distant mountains catch the flying joy,
“Till nation after nation taught the strain,
Earth rolls the rapturous hosanna round.”

And in the land of liberty’s birth the fires of patriotism will be kept aflame by the iteration and reiteration of the answer to the fisherman’s question, that “Liberty still lives.” And from the hearts of the crowded cities, from the fireside of the farmer, and from the workshop of the mechanic, in the busy hamlets of labor, and in the homes of luxury and ease, the hearts of freemen will be cheered as our noble craft sails on, with the inspiriting assurance that “Liberty still lives.” The burden of that cry will float upon the air wherever our banner waves, and its resonant notes will fill the land with a new inspiration as the joyful assurance is heard.

“Coming up from each valley, flung down from each height)
Our Country and Liberty, God for the right.”

See also: Advice to Young People from Noah Webster Father of American Education
The Wisdom and Love of God as Shown by His Creation by Noah Webster
COURAGE! A Poem by Bryan Waller Procter 1787-1874
AIM HIGH! An Address by President Benjamin Harrison 1893
A GOOD NAME by Joel Hawes 1789-1867
PATRIOT SONS OF PATRIOT SIRES by Rev. Samuel Francis Smith 1808-1895
TRUE FREEDOM! A Poem by James Russell Lowell 1819-1891
The Relationship Between a Man and Woman

THE MIGHTY WORD “NO.” by Theodore L. Cuyler, 1822-1909

Theodore_L._CuylerThe most tremendous word in the English language is the short yet mighty word, “No.” It has been the pivot on which innumerable destinies have turned for this world and the next. Spoken at the right moment, it has saved multitudes from disgrace, from ruin. The splendid career of Joseph turned on the prompt NO spoken at the very nick of time.

Nehemiah’s simple, manly statement is, “So do not I, because of the fear of God.” Nobly said. We wish some young man would write those sharp ringing words in his note-book, and determine to make the same answer whenever he is tempted to do a selfish or wicked act. Daniel might easily have said to himself, Oh, everybody about the Court here drinks wine and lives high on the king’s meat. I do not want to be thought queer or puritanical.” He dared to be singular. “So did not I,” was the motto of this sturdy young teetotaler. If he had yielded to the current of temptation, and drifted with it, we never should have heard of such a man as Daniel.

All the people who make a marked success in life, and who achieve any good work for God, are the people who are not ashamed to be thought singular. The man who runs with the crowd counts for nothing. It is when he turns about and faces the multitude who are rushing on to do evil that he commands every eye. Then, by a bold protest, he may put a thousand to flight. Every young man must come out and be separate from sinners, if they wish to save their characters and their souls. The downward pull of sin is tremendous. To be able firmly to say, “Yet will not I,” requires the grace from above in the heart. There is a subtle pull also in the drift of fashion and usage which carries away every one who is not established on a Bible conscience. Three fourths of all the persons who are drowned on the seashore are swept out by the undertow. This is the secret influence which takes hold of so many church-members and carries them off into extravagant living, into sinful amusements, and all manner of worldly conformities. The bottom of the great deep is / strewed with backsliders. Every true Christian is bound to be a “non-conformist.”

goodcharacter3I would press the truth home upon every young man. Your salvation depends upon your ability to say NO.

The messmates of Captain Hedley Vicars sneered at him as a Methodist and a fanatic. A British soldier once told me that Vicars was a spiritual power in his regiment. We had just such Christian soldiers in our army during the war. In every school the difference is clearly marked between the boy who has moral pluck and the boy who is mere pulp. The one knows how to say, NO! The other is so afraid of being thought “verdant” that he soon kills everything pure and fresh and manly in his character, and dries up into a premature hardness of heart. I well remember the pressure brought to bear in college upon every young man to join in a wine dinner or to take a hand in some contraband amusement. Some timber got well seasoned. Some of the other got well-rotted, through sensuality and vice. The Nehemiahs at college have been Nehemiahs ever since. The boy was father of the man.

The only motive that could hold back the brave ” nonconformist” at Jerusalem was a godly conscience. “So did not I, because of the fear of God.” This ever fresh principle held him firm when temptation struck him as the undercurrents strike against the keel. Christ must be to you a pattern, and He must be to you a power. It is not enough to believe in Jesus. You must add to your faith “courage.” Then, with Christ as your model, and Christ as your Inward Might, you will always be able to face down temptation with the iron answer, ” So will not I.”

Theodore L. Cuyler, Feb. 17, 1894.

A PREVENTIVE “NO.”

“Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the way of evil men.
Avoid it, pass not by it. turn from it, and pass away.” Proverbs of Solomon

AmericanFlagAndCross

THE GREAT AMERICAN REPUBLIC A CHRISTIAN STATE by Cardinal James Gibbons 1834-1921

THE GREAT AMERICAN REPUBLIC A CHRISTIAN STATE.

Contributed by Cardinal Gibbons, from Address, “The Religious Element in American Civilization.”

US flag and bible cross

At first sight it might seem that religious principles were entirely ignored by the fathers of the Republic in framing the Constitution, as it contains no reference to God, and makes no appeal to religion. And so strongly have certain religious sects been impressed with this fact that they have tried to get the name of God incorporated into that document. But the omission of God’s holy name affords no just criterion of the religious character of the founders of the Republic, or of the Constitution which they framed. Nor should we have any concern to have the name of God imprinted in the Constitution, so long as the Instrument itself is interpreted by the light of Christian revelation. I would rather sail under the guidance of a living captain than of a figure-head at the prow of the ship. Far better for the nation that His Spirit should animate our laws, that He should be invoked in our Courts of Justice, that He should be worshipped in our Sabbaths and thanksgivings, and that His guidance should be implored in the opening of our Congressional proceedings.

But the Declaration of Independence is one of the most solemn and memorable professions of political faith that ever emanated from the leading minds of any country. It has exerted as much influence in foreshadowing the spirit and character of our Constitution and public policy as the Magna Charta exercised on the Constitution of Great Britain. A devout recognition of God and of His overruling Providence pervades that momentous document from beginning to end. God’s holy name greets us in the opening paragraph, and is piously invoked in the last sentence of the Declaration; and thus it is, at the same time, the corner-stone and the keystone of this great monument to freedom. The illustrious signers declared that ” when, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands that have connected them with another, and to, assume among the powers of the earth the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect for the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes that impel them to the separation.” They acknowledge one Creator, the source of “life, liberty, and of happiness.” They “appeal to the Supreme judge of the world” for the rectitude of their intentions, and they conclude in this solemn language: “For the support of this declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor.”

The laws of the United States are so intimately interwoven with the Christian religion that they cannot be adequately expounded without the light of revelation. “The common law,” says Kent, “is the common jurisprudence of the United States, and was brought from England and established here, so far as it was adapted to our institutions and circumstances. It is an incontrovertible fact that the common law of England is, to a great extent, founded on the principles of Christian ethics. The maxims of the Holy Scriptures form the great criterion of right and wrong in the civil courts.

The Puritans who founded New England, the Dutch who settled in New York, the Quakers and Irish who established themselves in Pennsylvania, the Swedes in Delaware, the English Catholics who colonized Maryland, the English Episcopalians who colonized Virginia, Georgia, and North Carolina, the Irish Presbyterians who also emigrated to the last-named State, the French Huguenots and the English colonists who planted themselves in South Carolina, the French and Spanish who took possession of Louisiana and Florida, — all these colonists made an open profession of Christianity in one form or other, and recognized religion as the basis of society. The same remark applies with equal truth to that stream of population which, from the beginning of the present century, has been constantly flowing into this country from Ireland and Germany, and extending itself over the entire land. We have grown up, not as distinct, independent, and conflicting communities, but as one corporate body, breathing the same atmosphere of freedom, governed by the same political rights.

I see in all this a wonderful manifestation of the humanizing and elevating influence of Christian civilization. What is the secret of our social stability and order? It results from wise laws, based on Christian principles, and which are the echo of God’s eternal law. What is the cohesive power that makes us one body politic out of so many heterogeneous elements? It is the religion of Christ. We live as brothers, because we recognize the brotherhood of humanity, — one Father in heaven, one origin, one destiny.

Note. — The oath of the President of the United States before he assumes the duties of office ; that administered in courts of justice, not only to witnesses, but also to the judge, jury, lawyers, and officers of the court, in accordance with the Constitution, — implies a belief in God and forms of acts of worship. It is a national tribute to the universal sovereignty of the Creator. By the act of taking an oath a man makes a profession of faith in God’s unfailing truth, absolute knowledge, and infinite sanctity. The Christian Sabbath is revered, as a day of rest and public prayer, throughout the laud. This is national homage to the Christian religion.

See also:
Christianity and the Founding of the United States the Simple Truth
CHRISTIANITY AS A POLITICAL FORCE by Senator John A. Dix 1798-1879
THE DUTY AND VALUE OF PATRIOTISM by John Ireland 1894
A REPUBLIC! A LIVING BREATHING CONSTITUTION DEFINED! by Alphonse De Lamartine 1790-1869
The Wisdom and Love of God as Shown by His Creation by Noah Webster
Advice to Young People from Noah Webster Father of American Education
Divine Heredity
Shephard

The Excellence of the Christian Religion by Noah Webster Published 1834 Part 2

The Wisdom and Love of God as Shown by His Creation 1834 by Noah Webster

The Excellence of the Christian Religion by Noah Webster Published 1834 Part 1

Political Evils and the Remedy for them by Noah Webster 1834

OXYGEN VOLUME 13

Pride and humility. — The great difference between the maxims of the world and the doctrines of the gospel, is, that human opinions spring from pride, and tend to foster it; whereas the doctrines of the gospel teach humility, and self-abasement. The maxims of the world serve to encourage self dependence in men, inducing them to rely on their own strength and resources for success, in business or policy, without seeking aid from the Almighty source of power. The gospel inculcates the opposite doctrine; it teaches that “God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace to the humble.” It serves to make men humble, and to rely wholly on God for success, not only in spiritual concerns, but in the ordinary occupations of this world. In the pagan world, bravery and human efforts are everything; and God is nothing. In the christian system, human strength is nothing, and God is everything. In a christian country then, all government should be founded on Christian principles or should be directed to support them; and to such a system God will give success. All governments of a different kind will produce, as they have ever produced, innumerable evils while they last, and will ultimately sink into corruption and be ruined. All history is a tissue of facts confirming these observations.

  The Bible. — As the will of God is our only rule of action, and that will, can be fully known only from revelation, the Bible must be considered as the great source of all the truths by which men are to be guided in government, as well as in all social transactions. Other books, if in accordance with the Bible, may be read with advantage. But a large proportion of the books which fill our libraries have little or no bearing on the sound principles of morals and religion. They serve only for amusement, and occupy time in reading that might be more usefully employed. The first and most important duty of man is to furnish his mind with correct notions respecting God, his laws, and human duty; and then to exert his faculties, and direct his knowledge to the benevolent design of making others wiser and better. It was for these purposes, the revelation of God was given to men; revelations preserved in the Bible, the instrument of all reformation in morals and religion.

  Dignity of man, — The dignity of man, in the view of the world, consists in elevation of rank in society, superior intelligence, and high minded notions of honor. These are qualities which make men respected in society, and are of real value to the possessor. But these qualities may be and often are united, in the same character, with the foulest vices. There is another species of dignity which consists in the abhorrence of every vice, and in aiming at the excellence which has a resemblance to the divine perfections. God is the only perfect being, the only model of all excellence; and no man can be possessed of true dignity of character, without purity of heart, and a divine principle which elevates the affections above the love of that which God abhors and forbids. “Whatever God forbids is degrading, however fashionable it may be, and however esteemed among men. It is our first duty to seek the honor that comes from God.

Consistency of the scriptures, — The doctrines and precepts recorded in the scriptures all tend to the same point, that of displaying the character of God, and exalting the character of man by bringing it to a conformity with that of God. All vice and crime, whatever God forbids, tends to stain and lower human character; whatever God requires, love, justice, charity, benevolence, and all kindred virtues, tend to elevate human character. All vice and crime tend to annoy and diminish happiness; religion, pure morals and all the virtuous affections tend to produce or increase happiness. As in the physical world, God has made everything in the best manner to accommodate the human race, and everything is adapted to that end; so in the moral world, everything ordained by God is adapted to promote intellectual and religious improvement, and secure to men the greatest happiness of which they are susceptible in their present state of existence.

jesus_shepherd  Men co-workers with God, — God has not placed men upon the earth to live in idleness. He has made a soil to produce vegetables, but he has left men to sow, and plant and dress the fields. He has created trees, and stones, and clay, but he has not built houses; the materials are made, but men are to prepare and use them. He has furnished the earth and the sea with animals, but he has left it to men to take, to tame, to feed and to manage such as his wants require. He has deposited water, and coal and other minerals in the earth, where they lie safe without incommoding men; but he has left mankind to dig for them, and prepare them for use.

So in the moral system, God has given powers and faculties to man, and laws to govern him; but he has left men to cultivate their own faculties, and apply them to the discovery of truth, to the invention of useful arts, and to improvement in government, morals, and religion. As in the natural world, the earth, if uncultivated, produces weeds and noxious plants ; so in morals and religion, the minds of men, if left without culture, produce whatever is evil, noxious to society, offensive to God and pernicious to human happiness.

The christian religion exalts the intellect and perfects the human character, — The principal object of religion is to correct the heart and purify it from whatever is wrong and inconsistent with the enjoyment of God. But the sublime views of God and of his works, which the scriptures exhibit, have a wonderful effect in strengthening the intellect and expanding its powers. What a sublime description of the omnipresence and omniscience of God, is given in the hundred and thirty ninth psalm? The sacred writers labor for words to express the character and perfections of God. They transport us to an extent in which we are lost in the vastness of their conceptions.

Equally effectual are the scriptures in refining our ideas, by representations of the purity and holiness of God. The more we know of God, the more just will be our conceptions of what is ennobling in our own conduct; and every step we take in imitating his perfections is an advance in elevation of character. This purity of mind, and this elevation and expansion of intellect are the beginnings of that ever increasing holiness, and that boundless enlargement of knowledge which are to complete the character and the felicity of the children of God, in, another world.

  Genuine religion. — We must be careful to distinguish the real religion taught by Christ and his apostles, from those systems which interested men have established. We find the true religion of Christ in the Bible only. It is a scheme wonderfully simple, the principles of which are all comprehended in two short phrases, love to God, and love to men. Supreme love to God, the source and model of all excellence, is the foundation of the whole system of Christianity; and from this principle in the heart flow all the benevolent affections and exercises, which constitute practical piety. The person who loves God supremely, will reverence his character and laws, and will extend his benevolent affections and charities to all his creatures. From this source will proceed love to man, and the careful performance of all moral and social duties.

See also: Non Revisionist Politically Incorrect History of Jesus Christ by Johannes von Müller 1832
Christianity and the Founding of the United States
Advice to Young People from Noah Webster Father of American Education
Divine Heredity
christian-religion-God-bless-you

The Excellence of the Christian Religion by Noah Webster Published 1834 Part 1

The Excellence of the Christian Religion and the Reasons behind the Social Ills of American Society: by Noah Webster (Father of American Education) Published in 1834

Cross-at-Sunset3

See also: The Wisdom and Love of God as Shown by His Creation by Noah Webster

“It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians; not on religions, but on the gospel of Jesus Christ! For this very reason people of other faiths have been afforded asylum, prosperity and freedom of worship here!” — Patrick Henry

  Reflections. — The histories written by the evangelists, and the Acts of the Apostles by Luke, contain narrations of events by far the most important that ever occurred on earth. The birth of the Savior, the doctrines he preached, the purity of his life, and his final sufferings and death, are themes on which angels may dwell with rapturous joy. Well then may men rejoice, when we consider that his appearance, his teachings, his obedience, and his sufferings were designed to redeem an apostate world ; to disclose the way by which mankind can be restored to the favor of God, which by their sins they had forfeited; and by which, the penalty of everlasting destruction which they had incurred, may be avoided.

Christ-our-pilotThe Christian religion has already changed the aspect of a large part of the world. It has banished idolatry and pagan superstition from many countries; it has civilized and softened the manners of nations; it has mitigated the cruelties of war; it has inspired a spirit of peace; it has raised the female part of our species from degradation and slavery; it has founded charitable institutions to alleviate the sufferings of the poor; it has introduced the true principles of civil liberty; it has begun to arrest the barbarous practice of enslaving our fellow men; it has changed or is changing the character of the whole world. After a lapse of eighteen hundred years, men have learned that they are bound to labor for the furtherance of the gospel; that this is the great, the principal duty of all Christian nations, to which all other schemes of improvement are subordinate; and the work will prosper; the gospel will triumph, till all men living shall bow to the scepter of Jesus Christ.

  Superior excellence of the Christian religion, — The first and most essential advantage of the religion of the Bible, is, that it proceeds from God himself by revelation. It has God for its author, and truth for its basis. No other system of religion has even a plausible claim to a divine origin. Men without revelation wander in darkness; they have no just notions of the creator of all things; they know not who made the world and themselves, nor why they were made; they know not any divine will or law, nor any authoritative rules which are to govern their actions; they have some crude notions of a superior power, but where he is, or what his character, they are utterly ignorant; hence they frame deities in their imaginations, and worship them; they pay homage to the sun and moon; or to animals on the earth; and making images of their deities, they worship stocks and stones, of any and every monstrous form. Thus they live without a knowledge of God, in ignorance and beastly vices, and die without hope, like the brutes. Such has been the condition of most nations from the earliest ages.

Advantages of revelation, — It was in accordance with the character of a benevolent Creator, that when he made a rational being, he should make known to him the author of his being, the purposes for which he was made, and the laws by which his reason should be regulated. God therefore revealed to man his character and will. He informs men that his essence is purely spiritual, and of course invisible to human eyes; that his attributes are almighty power and wisdom; perfect holiness, and pure benevolence; that he is sovereign of the world, and enjoins on all his rational creatures entire obedience to his will; that sin or disobedience to his law’s will certainly be punished with eternal banishment from his presence; but that his obedient subjects will be rewarded with endless happiness. Hence, although men must all die, yet there will be a resurrection from the grave, and all men will be judged according to their works; the good will be separated from the wicked; and the destiny of both classes will be irrevocably fixed.

  First duties of men, — The first and most important duty of men, or rational beings, is to make themselves acquainted with the author of their existence, his character and attributes, his will and laws, and what he enjoins us to do or forbear. Of God’s character, we may obtain some imperfect notions from his works, from the world in which we live, its structure, its productions, the arrangement of its parts, and the adaptation of each part and every production to its proper use. Our views of the Creator may be still further extended by surveying the heavens, and the harmony of the whole system of worlds. These give us exalted ideas of the Creator. But we must resort to revelation for the more accurate knowledge of God; his attributes; and especially of his moral government, in which we are most essentially concerned. In the scriptures only can we obtain a knowledge of God’s spiritual essence, his purity, holiness, truth, justice and benevolence. In the scriptures only can we learn for what purposes we were made, what God requires us to be and to do, to obtain his favor and protection in this life, and what is to be our fate after death.

Angels Obedience to God, — As God is a being of perfect holiness himself; he requires his rational creatures to be holy, that is, like himself, as the only condition of his favor. It is incompatible with God’s nature and attributes to approve any thing that is unholy or sinful; his nature repels from himself whatever is in opposition to it; and an unholy being could not be happy in his immediate presence, a single moment. Holiness or purity of heart implies an entire conformity to God’s will in principle, accompanied with a perfect obedience of life; or a constant desire and aim at such obedience.

Sin, — Sin is any voluntary transgression of God’s laws; or any voluntary neglect of the duties which he requires. Sins may be either sins of commission, that is, active violations of God’s law; or they may be sins of omission, that is, passive neglect of duty. The will and commands of God are revealed in the scriptures, with so much clearness, that every person of common understanding may learn from them what he is to perform, and what he is to forbear doing. Hence the first business of men is to read the scriptures, and learn the character and will of God and their own duties.

  Moral law, — The law by which the conduct of men in their several relations to God and their brethren of the human race, is to be regulated, is called the moral law. This proceeds from the will of God, is ordained by his authority, and adapted to promote his glory, and the happiness of mankind. It is sometimes stated in theories, that an action is right because it is useful; and that it would be right on account of its fitness, independent of a divine command. But we can know nothing respecting fitness or unfitness, except as they exist in the works of God; and as he originated whatever exists, his will or purpose must have preceded all created things, and all the relations of things to each other. Whatever is right and useful therefore, must be so because God has ordained it to be the means of promoting his designs in the general system of things; and whatever is evil and mischievous must be so, because God has ordained it to be subversive of his designs.

Shephard  The glory of God and happiness of his creatures, — We are told by the apostle Paul, that in whatever we do, we are to do all to the glory of God. The whole system of created things, and their relations to God and to each other, are so adjusted by the Creator, that the actions of his rational creatures, which are essentially right and best adapted to promote their interest and happiness, are in accordance with God’s will, and tend to his glory. In a perfect system of things, a God of infinite power, directed by infinite benevolence, would not suffer to exist any discordance, or discrepancy, between moral actions which affect his own character, and those which affect the interest and happiness of men. Such disagreement would imply imperfection in the Creator, which we cannot suppose to be possible.

First Commandment

  Supreme love to God, — The first and great commandment, Christ has informed us, is, to love the Lord our God, with all the heart and soul and strength and mind. And why? For this obvious reason: that God is the greatest and best being, indeed the only perfectly good being in the universe. This command then is in accordance with our reason, for that which is the best is most desirable, and tends most to our happiness. But in addition to this fitness, gratitude to God, our creator and constant benefactor, demands our warmest affections, for having made us what we are; for giving us all we have; and for offering us all we can desire, in a future life. Besides, supreme love to God leads or inclines us to love his works, his laws and his intelligent creatures. In short, it is the source of all good motives and principles in the human heart; and the exercise of this supreme love is a perpetual source of happiness to us in this life. In demanding this love then from men, God has consulted our happiness no less than his own glory. Here the two things are in perfect harmony.

Second Commandment

  Love to our fellow-men, — Christ informs US that the second command is like the first, “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.” The reasons are obvious; men are all one family, the children of the same father, formed with like capacities for improvement and enjoyment, and destined to the same end. The individuals of this great family are more or less dependent on each other; and while each is bound to take care of himself and his connections, he is bound so to conduct his own affairs, as not to injure or annoy his neighbors; on the other hand he is bound by the law of kindness, and the command of God, to do them good, whenever he can do it without injury to himself; and further, he is bound to relieve them in want and distress, even when such relief requires a sacrifice of time, labor or property. And the performance of these duties is accompanied with a reward, even in this life; for it gives us pain to see others in distress; we are always happier for making or seeing others happy. In this we observe that God’s command tends to advance our own happiness.

In the two commandments above mentioned, Christ has comprised the substance of the moral law, or the whole of religion. It is love to God and love to man.

  Idolatry — In the second commandment delivered to Moses on Mount Sinai, the worship of images, pictures, statues, or the likeness of any created thing, is strictly prohibited. But a large portion of mankind has never known this prohibition, and they constantly worship images. This is idolatry, that abominable sin which God hates; the sin which often brought most terrible judgments upon the Israelites. And if any persons professing to belong to the denomination of Christians, adore images or pictures, or pay homage or divine honors to any created being, they violate the express command of God. “Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve,” is the express command of God. Deuteronomy 6:13, 10:20, Matthew 4:10.

The adoration of images, whether made of wood, stone, silver or gold; and of pictures on wood or canvas, is a mark of extreme stupidity; and shows the degraded state of human reason. Nor is it much less stupid to pray to saints or departed spirits. What can they do for men on earth? They cannot know who prays to them, nor what they pray for. They are not present with the worshiper: they are not omnipresent; and if they were, they could not help him. How degraded, how blind, and wretchedly ignorant, must be the persons who believe that pictures, or images, or departed souls, can afford them any assistance!

Third Commandment  

  Profaneness, — Among the sins prohibited by God, is profaneness. “ Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain.” This forbids all oaths and vain swearing, in which the name of the Supreme Being is used with levity and irreverence. Such use of God’s name implies, in the guilty person, a want of due regard to the majesty of God; and it tends to bring his sacred name and attributes into contempt with others. Then, a contempt of God leads to a disregard of his word, and an open violation of his laws. Nothing can be more pernicious than such contempt; for “the fear of God is the beginning of wisdom;” it is the spring, the source of all religion and piety; it is this fear which operates as the most powerful restraint on all the evil propensities of mankind; it is that without which there can be no effectual restraint of human passions, of lust, ambition, anger, and revenge. To weaken that fear in the human mind, is a great evil; to banish it, is to destroy the foundation of all religion and morals.

And of what use is profanity? Was any man ever wiser or happier for an irreverent use of God’s name? Did any man ever gain respect, or pleasure, or property, by profane swearing? Not at all; it is the most foolish and useless, as well as one of the most low, vulgar vices, that a man can commit. And in females, how shocking, how detestable! In this prohibition then, God, who requires from us supreme reverence, forbids nothing that is for our interest, our honor, or our happiness; but that only which is useless, and degrading to ourselves. Here again is a perfect coincidence of God’s will with our own interest and reputation.

Fourth Commandment

 The Sabbath. — “Remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy,” is the express command of God. The Sabbath was instituted in commemoration of God’s finishing the work of creation. It was enjoined upon men for other important purposes, particularly for giving rest and refreshment to man and beast, when weary by labor; and to give man one day in seven, to be consecrated to the immediate service of God. This service of God is the means prescribed for improvement in divine knowledge; in religious and moral instruction; which is necessary to guide us in the way of truth and duty in this life, and to prepare us for the enjoyment of heavenly bliss in a future world. In all respects, the Sabbath is a most important institution so important, that where it is not observed, men degenerate not only in religion, but in morals and manners; and become a kind of half savages. What can be more offensive to the author of all our blessings, than a habitual neglect of this institution? How reproachful is it to men, who are every moment dependent on the sustaining power of the Almighty, to refuse a portion of their time to learn his will, to praise his goodness, and supplicate his favors, and the forgiveness of their offenses? The rest of the Sabbath is very useful in recruiting the strength of the body, and necessary in the formation of the moral and religious character. In both respects, the command of God tends to the interest and happiness of men, as well as to his glory.

Fifth Commandment

  Obedience to Parents, — “Honor thy father and thy mother,” is another express command of God. This duty has a special reference to the good order of society. Parents are the natural guardians and governors of their children, during their infancy and childhood. It is made the duty of parents to provide for them food, clothing and instruction; and a sense of this duty is strongly fortified by the affection of parents for their children. In return children are commanded to obey their parents. Ephesians, 6:1. No duties of men in society are more important to peace and good order than those of parents and children. Families are the origin of nations; the principles instilled into youth in families, and the habits there formed are the germs of the principles and habits of society and nations. If children are left without restraint and culture in early life, many or most of them will be rude in manners, and turbulent members of society. On the other hand, the subordination of children in families tends to favor subordination in citizens; respect for parents generates respect for rulers and laws; at the same time, it cherishes and invigorates all the kindly affections, which are essential to domestic happiness. In this command then we see the entire coincidence between the will of God and our own interest and happiness.

Sixth Commandment

  Homicide, — Homicide, or the killing of one man by another is expressly forbid by God’s law, “Thou shalt not kill.” This prohibition extends to murder, manslaughter and other species of intentional killing. This is one of the most aggravated crimes, which can be perpetrated by men; so enormous is it, that the punishment of it, both by divine and human laws, is death, “Whoever sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed.” Genesis 9:6. Life is the gift of God; and neither has one man a right to take another’s life without a legal judgment for that purpose, nor has a man a right to put an end to his own life. Suicide as well as murder is a foul crime. If one man were permitted to kill another, what a horrible world would this be! No man would be safe a single day; we should be in terror by day and terror by night.

But we are not only prohibited from killing others by violence; we are forbidden to do anything knowingly which will destroy life. We are required to avoid any act which, in its consequences, may impair health. Thus we may not sell or give to others unwholesome food or drugs: we may not furnish food or drinks which tend to shorten life; we may not injure our own health, by excess in eating or drinking, or labor; nor can we innocently require such excess of labor in our servants, or demand of them such an exposure, as to put their lives in peril. In this prohibition we see the goodness of God in guarding our safety.

At The Helm

Seventh Commandment

  Lewdness, — All carnal intercourse between the sexes, except in lawful marriage is forbidden. The evils that proceed from a violation of God’s law on this subject, are unspeakably great. The injuries to health, the dissipation of property, the ruin of female character, the destruction of family happiness, and the abandonment of all moral and religious principle, with the final loss of the soul, are among the woeful consequences of this wickedness. The institution of marriage was intended to prevent a promiscuous intercourse of sexes, which sinks men to brutes ; also to preserve chastity, and to foster all the kind and tender affections that contribute to bind society together, prevent broils jealousy and hatred, and unite mankind in harmony and peace. The man that disturbs the peace of a family by leading astray one of its members, incurs guilt next to that of murder. The restraints laid upon mankind by the law of God, in this particular, are essential to human happiness.

Eighth Commandment

  Theft,— “Thou shalt not steal,” is the brief command of God, which comprises the prohibition of taking property from others unjustly, in any manner whatever. In a strict legal sense theft is only the taking of property from another privately and fraudulently, or with a felonious intent; but in a scriptural sense, it includes robbery and piracy. And why is theft immoral? Because God has forbidden it. But it is immoral also for reasons arising from our own rights. Our right to property proceeds from our personal labor in acquiring it, from purchase or from gift. If a man earns a hundred dollars by his labor, that labor is a personal sacrifice, of which the money is the reward. If another man steals that hundred dollars, he takes the value of his services; that is, he has the use of the other man’s limbs without a consideration. This would be unjust; hence it is the law of God and of man that every man shall enjoy safely and quietly what he earns, what he buys with his earnings, and what is given or bequeathed to him, as the earnings of others.

  Fraud and cheating, — Every species of fraud and cheating is forbidden in the command not to steal. The methods employed by men to gain property without giving an equivalent for it are literally innumerable. One man defrauds by concealing the defects of an article which he sells, and obtaining for it more than it’s worth; another defrauds by substituting one article for another which appears to be like it; another defrauds by selling a less quantity than the purchaser believes to be contained in the vessel or package; another mixes articles together which are of different values, or puts with a valuable article something which is of no value, as in adulterating liquors, drugs, powders and the like. Others defraud in contracts or in labor, performing less than is stipulated. All such frauds are species of stealing, within the meaning of God’s prohibition. These and many others are all sinful; highly displeasing to God and injurious to our fellow men. And of what advantage is stealing and fraud? The man who steals or defrauds always feels uneasy, guilt torments him and especially the sight of the man whom he has defrauded, and, if detected, he is doomed to be infamous. If stealing and robbery were permitted the world would be a continued scene of strife and bloodshed. In this prohibition of theft therefore, God’s law is as really for our interest and happiness as for his glory.

Ninth Commandment

  Falsehood, — The command of God on this subject is “Thou shalt not bear false testimony against thy neighbor!” In other words, thou shalt not utter anything false to the prejudice of thy neighbor. This command forbids all lying, as well as false testimony in a court. Lying consists not only in affirming what one knows to be false; but in any action that is intended to deceive. This may be by a nod of the head or a motion of the finger. But the prohibition has an especial reference to slander or defamation. This is one of the most common, as well as most mischievous vices. A person’s reputation is his most valuable possession; indeed without a good name, a man of sensibility cannot enjoy any possession. Slander may be by direct falsehood or lying respecting another; or by propagating evil reports from others, knowing them to be false. Whatever is said with a view to lessen the reputation of others, must proceed from a malignant heart. That which is false ought never to be reported; and in many cases, truth to the prejudice of another, ought not to be told.

  Lying and perjury, — Whenever a man communicates to another that which is false making him to believe what is not true, with the intention to mislead him, he is guilty of lying. Truth is all important in the intercourse of men. We are connected in society by a thousand relations in business, which are necessary to our welfare; and which cannot be disturbed without serious injury. Falsehood destroys confidence in neighborhoods, fills men with distrust and jealousy; interrupts the harmonious transaction of business; often occasions loss of property, quarrels, lawsuits and endless broils.

Perjury or swearing falsely in courts of law and equity is the more criminal, as it may produce immense injustice and even destroy life.

  Punishment of falsehood, — What advantage is gained by defamation, lying or perjury? Suppose a person to gain a little property or transient gratification by deception, what is the consequence? If he is not detected, he must be forever tortured by a guilty conscience, for guilt never leaves a man at ease; and, if detected, he is universally despised and shunned: he forfeits the esteem and confidence of all others, and especially of all good men whose esteem is most valuable; he is distrusted in all his declarations; he is degraded. Such is his punishment in this life. But God is a God of truth; he requires truth in men, and he has declared that “all liars shall have their part in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone.” Revelations 21:8. In forbidding slander, falsehood and perjury therefore God has established a rule of action for our benefit, no less than for the glory of his character, and the consistency of his moral government.

Tenth Commandment

  Coveting, — The prohibitions in this command restrain us from coveting the goods of our neighbors. We are then not only forbidden to obtain by theft or fraud what belongs to others; but we may not even desire their possessions, which providence has withheld from us. This desire often or generally proceeds from envy, inordinate ambition, or from discontent with the allotments of providence. This prohibition extends to render sinful all gaming, lotteries and rash enterprises for the sake of gain. We are bound to rest contented with the portion of property which we gain by honest industry and other lawful means. What loads of guilt are incurred by men whose inordinate desire of riches leads them to the use of every species of unlawful means? What detestable and criminal schemes do men devise and practice to gain office and superiority of station! With what envy do the poor often behold the rich, and perhaps when the rich man has gained by laborious industry a condition which the idle and the vicious will not labor to obtain! But all repining at the affluence of others is forbidden by God; and this prohibition is for our good; for without contentment there can be little or no happiness in life.

Ephesians 4:31, Corinthians 3:8, Matthew 5:22, 39, 44.

  Anger, — Anger is a passion excited by an injury or supposed injury done by another. It is a passion easily provoked, and too often indulged without restraint. But however difficult it may be to suppress it, in cases of willful injury; yet the divine commands and our own peace require that we restrain it. A moderate degree of resentment or feeling of dislike will usually be felt, when we receive an insult or willful injury. But it is of great importance to accustom ourselves to restrain this passion. We should ever be silent, when insulted rather than to utter an angry retort. If a man insults us or treats us contemptuously, it is better to remain silent and leave him to his own reflections for a time; for he will generally relent, and regret that he has offended. It is a magnanimous act, to overlook an injury, and it never fails to soften the offender and command his respect. Besides anger is a passion that makes a person unhappy, while it lasts; and if indulged to excess, often ends in further provocation and outrage. The prohibition of anger is therefore for our own happiness, as well as for the peace of society and the glory of God.

Romans 1:29, 13:13, Titus 3:3, Proverbs 3:31, 1 Peter 2:1.

  Envy, — Envy is the uneasy feeling which is excited by seeing the prosperity, exaltation or superior good of another. It is a passion that torments its possessor and thus inflicts its own punishment. It implies also discontent with the portion of good which God has assigned to the envious person; and this discontent can never be justified. To overcome this passion or feeling is indispensable to our comfort in life. A repining at the good of others often impairs the health, and always the happiness of men; and it is sure to destroy friendship, alienate those who ought to love each other, and produce hatred and rivalries that interrupt the courtesies of life. In prohibiting this passion, God consults the happiness of men, as in all his other prohibitions.

Jealousy is another passion which torments its possessor; and this, like other evils, proves that whatever is wrong tends more or less to disturb or destroy the comfort and happiness of men.

  Revenge, — Revenge is the infliction of evil on a person in return for a wrong or injury received. This is one of the most detestable practices; it is a heinous sin, and implies a temper extremely malignant. Yet nothing is more natural than a disposition to revenge. It is predominant among savages and the source of endless hostilities and war. In no one particular is the gospel more singular and superior to all human schemes of morality, than in the doctrine of forgiveness of injuries. This doctrine is a distinguishing trait in the preaching and instructions of Christ and his apostles. Says Christ, “But I say unto you, Love your enemies; bless them who curse you, do good to them that hate you and pray for them who despitefully use you, and persecute you.” Matthew 5:44. The excellence of such precepts shows them to be from heaven; for men, without such precepts, have ever returned evil for evil, injury for injury, blood for blood. The practice of men has tilled the world with violence, cruelty, war and devastation; the precepts of Christ tend to soften and allay the malignant passions, restrain persecution, war and plunder, heal the wounds inflicted by injuries; preserve peace between friends and nations, and cherish all the kind and benevolent affections. In short, the restraints imposed on our passions by the commands of God, all tend to our own peace and happiness.

  Intemperance, — By intemperance is to be understood all excessive indulgence of appetites and passions; but more generally it signifies excessive eating or gluttony, and the excessive drinking of intoxicating liquors. Excess in eating or drinking is a beastly vice; a vice by which a man is degraded almost to a brute. Indeed in many cases, the drunkard is in a condition below the brutes, for he destroys the use of his powers and faculties, which the brute does not. All excess in eating and drinking impairs the health, and a habit of this kind often wastes the property, and destroys reputation and usefulness. Many a life is shortened by intemperate drinking; many a crime is committed in a state of intoxication, which the person, when sober, would shrink from with horror; many a wife and family is rendered wretched by the use of spirituous liquors; and the greatest part of the tenants of the alms house and state prisons are those who have been habitual drinkers of spirit.

  Effects of intemperance, — Temperance in eating and drinking insures health, and generally lengthens life. In the days of the patriarchs, there was probably no such thing as distilled spirit, and wine was the juice of the grape unadulterated. To the temperate habits of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, it is probable we may ascribe their longevity. It is more than probable that intemperance in eating and drinking, and the luxuries of the modern tables of the rich, have greatly shortened the usual period of human life. If men should drink water only, and eat no high-seasoned provision, using more vegetable and less animal food, there would be fewer diseases among men, and an increase in the length of life. In the indulgence of the appetites to excess and in cookery, men often gratify the taste at the expense of more permanent good, their freedom from dispepsy and other diseases, which annoy, if they do not destroy life. All excess in eating and drinking is forbidden by the laws of God, and this prohibition tends to secure us in the enjoyment of substantial good.

  War, — War is a state of hostility between nations; a contest for superiority, sometimes undertaken for plunder, as among savages; sometimes for conquest of territory; sometimes for a throne; sometimes to avenge an injury or insult to national honor; and sometimes for defense against an invading foe. The only war that can be justified is a defensive war; the resistance of an enemy, that attempts to take our lives or property. We have a right to defend our persons, our houses, goods and lands against an assailing foe. But almost all wars have been undertaken for plunder or conquest; millions and millions of the human race have been slaughtered in fighting to gratify the ambition of monarchs, or the lust of dominion in republics. Men, who are all of one family, are separated into tribes or nations under different governments; rival interests excite hatred; and when such interests rouse the passion for war, men become blood-thirsty and ferocious as tigers. What a heart-rending sight must be a field of battle, when thousands and tens of thousands of men, who ought to live as brethren, are engaged in the horrible work of shedding each other’s blood! When will nations lay aside the detestable practice of fighting for their rights? When will they constitute civil tribunals to decide national controversies, as suits between individuals are now decided? When will men shake off the remains of savage and barbarous customs, and assume the dignity of Christians?

  Slavery, — One of the consequences of war is slavery. In early ages, before men were civilized, tribes of barbarians made war on other tribes for plunder and for prisoners. Prisoners were made slaves, as they still are by some nations. Christianity has abolished this practice among most European nations; but until within a few years, these same nations have permitted the practice of purchasing prisoners of war in Africa, to be transported to America and enslaved. War is still carried on in Africa, among the barbarous tribes, to take captives to be sold and conveyed to America for slaves. England, France and the United States have restrained their subjects from this inhuman trade; but it is still carried on by other nations. This barbarous practice is one of the most alarming evils of the world; and the consequences of it no mortal can foresee.

 Causes of human misery, — The two general causes of the sufferings of men, are physical and moral evils. Physical events, such as diseases, storms, famine and earthquakes, are often unavoidable, and in that case are to be borne with resignation to the divine will. Many diseases however and other natural evils proceed from the ignorance, negligence or vices of men, and may be avoided. But moral evils constitute or produce most of the miseries of mankind and these may be prevented or avoided. Be it remembered then that disobedience to God’s law, or sin is the procuring cause of almost all the sufferings of mankind. God has so formed the moral system of this world, that conformity to his will by men produces peace, prosperity and happiness; and disobedience to his will or laws inevitably produces misery. If men are wretched, it is because they reject the government of God, and seek temporary good in that which certainly produces evil.

  Folly and absurdities of men, — God has commanded men to be temperate in the use of his bounties; but men abuse his goodness, riot in gluttony and drunkenness and destroy their health. God has furnished water in abundance, which man may have with little labor or none at all; and water used only when necessary, never produces disease; but men extract spirit from vegetable substances, and drink to excite lively feelings, which soon subside and leave the body in languor, and the practice, if continued ends in weakening, trembling, decay and death.

God has enjoined benevolence, kindness, charity, forgiveness of injuries, and justice in dealings; but men naturally follow the dictates of selfishness they withhold charities, revenge injuries, defraud their neighbors, and thus excite angry passions, enmities, hatred, lawsuits. Hence instead of social peace and happiness, they are harassed with quarrels and losses.

God has enjoined labor as the means of subsistence and health; but men avoid labor, if they can; they indulge in idleness and resort to vicious pastimes, and waste their time, their money, and impair their health. Men are often their own worst enemies.

Political Evils and the Remedy for them by Noah Webster 1834

The Excellence of the Christian Religion by Noah Webster Published 1834 Part 2

See also:

Resistance to Tyrants is Obedience to God
Advice to Young People from Noah Webster Father of American Education
Non Revisionist Politically Incorrect History of Jesus Christ by Johannes von Müller 1832
Non-Revisionist Politically Incorrect History of America from the Ancient Authors Part 1
Christianity and the Founding of the United States
Non-Revisionist Politically Incorrect History of the World With Biblical References Part 1
Divine Heredity
Noahwebster

Advice to Young People from Noah Webster Father of American Education

NoahWebster1

See also The Wisdom and Love of God as Shown by His Creation by Noah Webster
Constitution of the United States and it’s Governmental Operations (In Plain English anyone can understand)

1. My young friends, the first years of your life are to be employed in learning those things which are to make you good citizens, useful members of society, and candidates for a happy state in another world. Among the first things you are to learn are your duties to your parents. These duties are commanded by God, and are necessary to your happiness in this life. The commands of God. are, “Honor thy father and thy mother.”—”Children, obey your parents in all things.” These commands are binding on all children; they cannot be neglected without sin. Whatever God has commanded us to do, we must perform, without calling in question the propriety of the command. ,

2. But the reasonableness of this command to obey parents is clear and easily understood by children, even when quite young. Parents are the natural guardians of their children. It is their duty to feed, clothe,protect, and educate them; and for these purposes it is proper and necessary that parents should have authority to direct their actions. Parents’ therefore are bound by duty and by right to govern their children; but the exercise of this right is to be regulated by affection. Parents have implanted in them a tender love for their offspring, which induces them to exercise authority over them with kindness.

3. It is proper that parents should be intrusted with the instruction of children, because children have every thing to learn, and parents are older, and have gained a knowledge of what their children want to know. Parents have learned what is right, and what is wrong; what is duty, and what is sin; what is useful, and what is hurtful to children and to men. And as children pass the first years of their life with their parents, they may be continually learning from their parents what is necessary or useful in the concerns of life.

4. It is not only proper that children should obey their parents, but their obedience should be prompt and cheerful. A slow, reluctant obedience, and that which is accompanied with murmurings,is not acceptable to parents, nor to God. A sense of duty should make a child free and ready to comply with a parent’s command; and this will always be the case where the child entertains a due respect for his parents. Love and respect render obedience easy and cheerful, and a willing obedience increases the confidence of parents in their children, and strengthens their attachment to them. But a cold and unwilling obedience, with a murmuring disposition, alienates affection, and inclines the parent to rigor and severity in the exercise of his authority.

5. Hence it is a primary duty of children, and as much their interest as it is their duty to”Honor their father and their mother.” This honor not only forbids the child to disobey his parents, but it forbids all rudeness and ill manners towards them. Children should manifest their respect for their parents in all their actions. They should be modest and respectful in their company, never interrupting them in conversation, nor boldly contradicting them: they should address them as superiors, and yield to their opinions and admonitions. This subordination of children to their parents, is the foundation of peace in families; contributes to foster those kindly dispositions, both in parents and children, which are the sources of domestic happiness, and which extend their influence to all social relations in subsequent periods of life.

6. Among the first and most important truths which you are to learn, are those which relate to God and religion. As soon as your minds become capable of reasoning, or excited by curiosity to know the causes of things, you will naturally inquire who made the world, who made you, and why were you made? You will understand, by a moment’s thought, that the things around you cannot have made themselves. You will be convinced that a stone or a mass of earth cannot have made itself, as it has no power in itself to act or move; it must then have had a creator, some being that had power to act or move, and to bring the stone into existence.

7. You observe that plants and trees grow, but they do not grow in winter, when it is cold; some degree of heat is necessary to their growth. You conclude then that wood and vegetable matter in itself has not the power of growth or increase. You see various animals, as dogs, and horses, but you know that they cannot create themselves; the first animal of every kind must then have had a creator, distinct from the animal himself. You see houses, and barns, and ships, but you know that they did not make themselves; you know they are made by men. You know also that you did not create yourselves; you began to exist at a time which you cannot remember, and in a manner of which you have no knowledge.

8. From such familiar observations and reflections, children may be convinced, with absolute certainty, that there must be a being who has been the creator of all the things which they see. Now when you think that of all the substances about you, not one can have been its own creator, and when you see the vast multitude of things, their variety, their size, their curious forms and structures, you will at once conclude that the Being who could make such things must possess immense power, altogether superior to the power of any being that you see on the earth. You will then be led to inquire who is this Being, and where is he.

9. Here not only children, but the wisest philosophers are brought to a stand. We are compelled to believe that there is a Being of vast and unlimited power, who has created whatever we see; but who he is, or where he is, we cannot know by our own observation or reason. As we cannot see this Being, we cannot, by the help of reason, know anything of his manner of existence, or of his power, except what we learn from his works, or from revelation. If we had been left to gather all our knowledge of the creator from his works, our knowledge of him must have been very imperfect. But the creator has not left mankind in ignorance on this subject. He has graciously revealed his character to man; and his revelations are recorded in a book, which by way of eminence, is called the Bible.

10. From the Bible we learn that God is a Spirit; hence we cannot see him. Spirit is not visible to human eyes. Yet we need not wonder that a substance which is invisible should possess amazing power. We cannot see the air or wind; yet we know by observation, that this fine, subtil fluid is a substance that supports our life, and when in rapid motion, it has immense force. We conclude then that a Being, consisting of pure spirit, may possess all the power necessary to the formation of the sun, moon, and stars, and every thing that we can see or feel. This great Being, in our language, is called God. He is a spirit that extends through the universe.

11. The scriptures inform us that God is not only all-powerful, but all-wise: and his wisdom is displayed in the admirable structure of whatever he has made; in the adaptation of every thing to its proper uses; in the exact order and beautiful arrangement and harmony of all parts of creation. The scriptures inform us also that God is a benevolent Being. “God is love,” and we have abundant evidence of this truth in the works of creation. God has not only made men and animals to inhabit the earth, but he has furnished the earth with every thing that is necessary for their support and welfare. The earth is stocked with plants, which are food for animals of various kinds, as well as for man; and plants and animals furnish man with food and clothing and shelter from the inclemency of the weather. The sea and rivers and lakes are also stocked with animals that supply food and other conveniences for man. The earth contains inexhaustible stores for supplying the wants and desires of living creatures.

12. We learn also from the Bible that God is a holy Being; that is, he is perfectly free from any sinful attributes or dispositions. If God was a wicked or malevolent Being, he would have contrived and formed every thing on earth to make his creatures miserable. Instead of this, we know from observation as well as experience, he has made every thing for their comfort and happiness. Having learned from the scriptures and from the works of creation, the character of God, and that he is your creator; the next inquiry is, in what relation do you stand to your maker, and what is his will respecting your conduct.

13. The first and most important point to be decided in your minds is that God is your Supreme or Sovereign Ruler. On this point, there can be no room for doubt; for nothing can be more evident than that the Being who creates another, has a perfect, indisputable right to govern him. God has then a complete right to direct all the actions of the beings he has made. To the lower animals God has given certain propensities, called instincts, which lead them to the means of their own subsistence and safety.

14. Man is a being of a higher order; he is furnished with understanding or intellect, and with powers of reason, by which he is able to understand what God requires of him, and to judge of what is right and wrong. These faculties are the attributes of the soul, or spiritual part of man, which constitutes him a moral being, and exalts him; to a rank in creation much superior to that of any other creature on earth.

15. Being satisfied that God is your creator and rightful governor, the next inquiry is, what is his will concerning you; for what purpose did he make you and endow you with reason? A wise being would not have made you without a wise purpose. It is very certain then that God requires you to perform some duties, and fill some useful station among other beings.

16. The next inquiry then is, what you are to do and what you are to forbear, in order to act the part which your maker has assigned to you in the world. This you cannot know with certainty without the help of revelation. But here you are not left without the means of knowledge; for God has revealed his will, and has given commands for the regulation of your conduct.

17. The Bible contains the commands of God; that book is full of rules to direct your conduct on earth; and from that book you may obtain all you want to know, respecting your relation to God, and to your fellow men, and respecting the duties which these relations require you to perform. Your duties are comprised in two classes; one including such as are to be performed directly to God himself; the other, those which are to be performed directly to your fellow men.

18. The first and great command is, to love the Lord your God with all the heart and soul and mind and strength. This supreme love to God is the first, the great, the indispensable duty of every rational being. Without this no person can yield acceptable obedience to his maker. The reasonableness of this command is obvious. God is a Being of perfect excellence, and the only being of which we have any knowledge, who possesses this character. Goodness or holiness is the only source of real happiness; it is therefore necessary to be holy in order to be happy. As the character of God is the only perfect model of holiness, it follows that all God’s creatures who are intended to be happy, must have the like character. But men will not aim to possess the character of holiness, unless they love it as the chief good. Hence the necessity of loving God with supreme affection.

19. Sin is the source of all evil. If sin was admitted into heaven, it would disturb the happiness of the celestial abode. Hence God has determined that no sinner shall be admitted into heaven. Before men can be received there, they must be purified from sin and sinful propensities. As this world is a state in which men are prepared for heaven, if prepared at all, it is indispensable that while they are in this world, they must be purified in heart, their evil affections must be subdued, and their prevailing dispositions must be holy. Thus when they are sanctified, and supreme love to God rules in their heart, they become qualified for the enjoyment of bliss with God and other holy beings.

20. It is true that, in this world, men do not become perfectly holy; but God has provided a Redeemer whose example on earth was a perfect model of holy obedience to God’s law, which example men are to imitate as far as they are able; and God accepts the penitent sinner’s cordial faith in Christ, accompanied with sincere repentance, and humble submission and obedience to his commands, in the place of perfect holiness of character.

21. The duties which you owe directly to God are entire, unwavering faith in his promises, reverence of his character, and frequent prayer and worship. Unbelief is a great sin, and so is profaneness, irreverence, contempt of his character and laws, neglect of prayer and of worship, public and private. All worship of images and saints, is an abomination to God; it is idolatry, which is strictly forbidden in the Bible; and all undue attachment to the pleasures, the amusements, and honors of the world, is a species of idolatry.

22. The second class of duties comprehends all such as you are bound to perform to your fellow men. These duties are very numerous, and require to be studied with care. The general law on this subject is prescribed by Christ in these words, “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.” You are bound to do that to others which you desire them to do to you. This law includes all the duties of respect to superiors, and of justice and kindness to all men.

23. It has already been stated to you, that you are to obey your parents; and although obedience to other superiors may not always be required of you, yet you are bound to yield them due honor and respect in all the concerns of life. Nothing can be more improper than a neglect or violation of this respect. It is a beautiful anecdote, recorded of the Spartan youth, that in a public meeting, young persons rose from their seats when a venerable old man entered the assembly. It makes no difference whether the aged man is an acquaintance or a stranger; whoever he may be, always give him the precedence. In public places, and at public tables, it is extreme rudeness and ill manners for the young to thrust themselves into the highest and best seats.

24. The law of kindness extends also to the treatment of equals. Civility requires that to them all persons should give a preference; and if they do not accept it, the offer always manifests good breeding, and wins affection. Never claim too much; modesty will usually gain more than is demanded; but arrogance will gain less. Modest unassuming manners conciliate esteem; bold obtrusive manners excite resentment or disgust.

25. As mankind are all one family, the rule of loving our neighbor as ourselves extends to the performance of all duties of kindness to persons of all nations and all conditions of men. Persons of all nations, of all ranks and conditions, high and low, rich and poor, and of all sects or denominations, are our brethren, and our neighbors in the sense which Christ intended to use the word in his precept. This comprehensive rule of duty cannot be limited by any acts of our own. Any private association of men for the purpose of contracting the rule, and confining our benevolence to such associations, is a violation of the divine commands. Christ healed the sick and the lame, without any regard to the nation or sect to which they belonged.

26. One of the most important rules of social conduct is justice. This consists positively in rendering to every person what is due to him, and negatively, in avoiding every thing that may impair his rights. Justice embraces the rights of property, the rights of personal liberty and safety, and the rights of character.

27. In regard to property, you are to pay punctually all your just debts. When a debt becomes payable to another, you cannot withhold or delay payment without a violation of his right. By failure or delay of payment, you keep that which belongs to another. But the rule of justice extends to every act which can affect the property of another. If you borrow any article of your neighbor, you are to use it with care and not injure the value of it. If you borrow a book or any utensil, and injure it, you take a portion of your neighbor’s property. Yet heedless people who would not steal twenty-five cents from another, often think nothing of injuring a borrowed utensil, to twice or five times that amount.

28. In like manner, one who takes a lease of a house or land, is bound to use it in such a manner as to injure it as little as possible. Yet how often do the lessees of real estate strive to gain as much as possible from the use of it, while they suffer the buildings and fences to go to ruin, to the great injury of the owner! This is one of the most common species of immorality. But all needless waste, and all diminution of the value of property in the hands of a lessee, proceeding from negligence, amounts to the same thing as the taking of so much of the owner’s property without right. It is not considered as stealing, but it is a species of fraud that is as really immoral as stealing.

29. The command of God,”Thou shalt not steal,” is very comprehensive, extending to the prohibition of every species of fraud. Stealing is the taking of something from the possession of another clandestinely for one’s own use. This may be done by entering the house of another at night, and taking his property; or by taking goods from a shop secretly, or by entering upon another’s land and taking his horse or his sheep. These customary modes of stealing are punishable by law.

30. But there are many other ways of taking other men’s property secretly, which are not so liable to be detected. If a stone is put into a bag of cotton intended for a distant market, it increases the weight, and the purchaser of that bag who pays for it at its weight, buys a stone instead of its weight in cotton. In this case, the man who first sells the bag, knowing it to contain a stone, takes from the purchaser by fraud as much money as the weight of the stone produces, that is, as much as the same weight of cotton is worth. This is as criminal as it would be to enter his house and steal so much money.

31. If butter or lard is put up for a foreign or distant market, it should be put up in a good state, and the real quality should be such as it appears to be. If any deception is practiced, by covering that which is bad by that which is good, or by other means, all the price of the article which it brings beyond the real worth, is so much money taken from the purchaser by fraud, which falls within the criminality of stealing. If a buyer of the article in Europe or the West Indies is thus defrauded, he may never be able to know who has done the wrong; but God knows, and will punish the wrong doer. It is as immoral to cheat a foreigner as to cheat a neighbor.

32. Not only property in money and goods is to be respected; but the property in fruit growing in orchards and gardens. A man’s apples, pears, peaches, and melons, are as entirely his own, as his goods or his coin. Every person who climbs over a fence, or enters by a gate into another’s inclosure without permission, is a trespasser; and if he takes fruit secretly, he is a thief. It makes no difference that a pear or an apple or a melon is of small value; a man has as exclusive a right to a cent or a melon as he has to a dollar,a dime or an eagle.

33. If in a country where apples are abundant, men do not notice the taking of a few apples to eat, yet this indulgence is not to be considered as giving a right to take them. Where the injury is trifling, men in neighborhoods may do such things by consent. But there are many species of fruit so rare as to be cultivated with much labor and protected with care. Such fruit is often valued even more than money. The stealing of such fruit is one of the most common crimes, and as disgraceful to a civilized and Christian people as it is common. Let every man or boy who enters another’s inclosure and steals fruit, be assured he is as guilty as one who enters another’s house and takes the same value in money.

34. If in making payment or counting money, a mistake occurs by which a sum falls into your hands, which belongs to another person, you are as much bound by moral duty to correct the mistake and restore the money to the rightful owner, as you would be not to take it by theft. If persons suppose that because this money falls into their hands by mistake, and the mistake may never be known to the person who has a right to the money; this makes no difference in the point of morality; the concealment of the mistake and the keeping of the money are dishonest, and fall within the command “Thou shall not steal.”

35. When a man is hired to work for another by the day, the week, or the month, he is bound to perform what he undertakes; and if no particular amount of labor is promised, he is bound to do the work which is ordinarily done in such cases. If a man hired to do a day’s work spends half the day in idleness, he defrauds his employer of a part of his due; that is, of one half the value of a day’s labor. If the price of labor is one dollar for the day, then to waste half the day in idleness is to defraud the employer of half a dollar; this is as dishonest as to take half a dollar from his chest.

36. When a mechanic contracts to build a house or a ship, he is bound to perform the work in the manner which is promised. If he performs the work slightly, and with workmanship inferior to that which is promised and understood at the time of contracting, he defrauds his employer. Neglect of duty, in such a case, is as essentially immoral as the positive act of taking property from another without his consent.

37. The adulteration of liquors and drugs is extremely criminal. By adulteration, the value of a thing is diminished; and if an adulterated liquor or drug is sold for that which is genuine, a fraud is committed on the purchaser. The adulteration of wines is one of the most common and flagrant immoralities in commercial countries. The adulteration of drugs may be even more iniquitous, for then the physician cannot rely on their effects in healing the sick. All classes of people, but especially the common people, are continually subjected to frauds by such adulterations. A glass of genuine unadulterated wine is scarcely to be found, and foul mixtures are often used as medicines, for no pure wine is to be had in the neighborhood.

33. Tho modes used to defraud men in the kind or in the quantity or quality of commodities offered for sale, are almost innumerable. They extend to almost every thing in which fraud is not easily detected. This is a melancholy picture of the state of society; exhibiting unequivocal evidence of the depravity of men. It shows that the love of money is the root of all evil—a principle so powerful in the human heart as to overcome all regard to truth, morality, and reputation.

39. In all your dealings with men, let a strict regard to veracity and justice govern all your actions. Uprightness in dealings secures confidence, and the confidence of our fellow men is the basis of reputation, and often a source of prosperity. Men are always ready to assist those whom they can trust; and a good character in men of business often raises them to wealth and distinction. On the other hand, hypocrisy, trickishness, and want of punctuality and of fairness in trade, often sink men into meanness and poverty. Hence we see that the divine commands, which require men to be just, are adapted to advance their temporal as well as their spiritual interest.

40. Not only are theft and fraud of all kinds forbidden by the laws of God and man, but all kinds of injury or annoyance of the peace, security, rights, and prosperity of men. The practice of boys and of men, who do mischief for sport, is as wrong in morality as it is degrading to the character. To pull down or deface a sign-board; to break or deface a mile-stone; to cut and disfigure benches or tables, in a school house, court house, or church; to place obstacles in the highway; to pull down or injure fences; to tarmsli the walls of houses or the boards of a fence, and similar tricks that injure property or disturb the peace of society, are not only mean but immoral. Why will rational beings indulge in such feats of mischief and folly? Men are not made to injure and annoy one another, but to assist them; not to do harm, but to do good; not to lessen, but to increase the prosperity and enjoyments of their fellow men.

41. But you are required to be just not only to the property, but to the reputation of others. A man’s reputation is dearer to him than his property, and he that detracts from the good name of another is as criminal as the thief who takes his property. Say nothing of your neighbor maliciously, nor spread reports about him to lessen his reputation. On the other hand, vindicate his conduct in all cases when you can do it with a clear conscience. If you cannot defend it, remain silent.

42. Nor are you to be less careful of the rights of others, than of their reputation and property. By the laws of creation, and by our civil constitution, all men have equal rights to protection, to liberty, and to the free enjoyment of all the benefits and privileges of government. All secret attempts, by associations, or otherwise, to give to one set of men or one party advantages over another, are mean, dishonorable, and immoral. All secret combinations of men to gain for themselves or their party advantages in preferments to office, are trespasses upon the rights of others.

43. In every condition of life, and in forming your opinions on every subject, let it be an established principle in regulating your conduct, that nothing can be honorable which is morally wrong. Men who disregard or disbelieve revelation often err from the true standard of honor, by substituting public opinion or false maxims for the divine laws. The character of God, his holy attributes, and perfect law, constitute the only models and rules of excellence and true honor. Whatever deviates from these models and rules must be wrong, and dishonorable. Crime and vice are therefore not only repugnant to duty, and to human happiness; but are always derogatory to reputation. All vice implies defect and meanness in human character.

44. In whatever laudable occupation you are destined to labor, be steady in an industrious application of time. Time is given to you for employment, not for waste. Most men are obliged to labor for subsistence; and this is a happy arrangement of things by divine appointment; as labor is one of the best preservatives both of health and of moral habits. But if you are not under the necessity of laboring for subsistence, let your time be occupied in something which shall do good to yourselves and your fellow men. Idleness tends to lead men into vicious pleasures; and to waste time is to abuse the gifts of God.

45. With most persons, the gaining of property is a primary object, and one which demands wisdom in planning business, and assiduous care, attention, and industry in conducting it. But it is perhaps more difficult to keep property than to gain it; as men while acquiring property are more economical and make more careful calculations of profit and loss, than when they hold large possessions. Men who inherit large possessions are particularly liable to waste their property, and fall into poverty. The greatest hereditary estates in this country are usually dissipated by the second or third generation. The sons and grandsons of the richest men are often hewers of wood and drawers of water to the sons and grandsons of their father’s and grandfather’s servants.

46. As a general rule in the expenditure of money, it is safest to earn money before you spend it, and to spend every year less than you earn. By this means, you will secure a comfortable subsistence, and be enabled to establish your children in some honest calling; at the same time, this practice will furnish the means of contributing to the wants of the poor, and to the promotion of institutions for civilizing and Christianizing heathen nations. This is a great and indispensable duty. ..

47. In your mode of living, be not ambitious of adopting every extravagant fashion. Many fashions are not only inconvenient and expensive, but inconsistent with good taste. The love of finery is of savage origin; the rude inhabitant of the forest delights to deck his person with pieces of shining metal, with painted feathers, and with some appendage dangling from the ears or nose. The same love of finery infects civilized men and women, more or less in every country, and the body is adorned with brilliant gems and gaudy attire. But true taste demands great simplicity of dress. A well made person is one of the most beautiful of all God’s works, and a simple, neat dress, displays this person to the best advantage.

48. In all sensual indulgences be temperate. God has given to men all good things for use and enjoyment; but enjoyment consists in using food and drink only for the nourishment and sustenance of the body, and all amusements and indulgences should be in moderation. Excess never affords enjoyment; but always brings inconvenience, pain, or disease. In selecting food and drink, take such as best support the healthy functions of the body, avoid as much as possible the stimulus of high-seasoned food; and reject the use of ardent spirits, as the most injurious and most fatal poison.

49. When you become entitled to exercise the right of voting for public officers, let it be impressed on your mind that God commands you to choose for rulers, just men who will rule in the fear of God. The preservation of a republican government depends on the faithful discharge of this duty; if the citizens neglect their duty, and place unprincipled men in office, the government will soon be corrupted; laws will be made, not for the public good, so much as for selfish or local purposes; corrupt or incompetent men will be appointed to execute the laws; the public revenues will be squandered on unworthy men; and the rights of the citizens will be violated or disregarded. If a republican government fails to secure public prosperity and happiness, it must be because the citizens neglect the divine commands, and elect bad men to make and administer the laws. Intriguing men can never be safely trusted.

50. To young men I would recommend that their treatment of females should be always characterized by kindness, delicacy and respect. The tender sex look to men for protection and support. Females when properly educated and devoted to their appropriate duties, are qualified to add greatly to the happiness of society, and of domestic life. Endowed with finer sensibilities than men, they are quick to learn and to practice the civilities and courtesies of life; their reputation requires the nice observance of the rules of decorum; and their presence and example impose most salutary restraints on the ruder passions and less polished manners of the other sex. In the circle of domestic duties, they are cheerful companions of their husbands; they give grace and joy to prosperity; consolation and support to adversity. When we see an affectionate wife devoted to her domestic duties, cheering her husband with smiles, and as a mother, carefully tending and anxiously guarding her children and forming their minds to virtue and to piety; or watching with conjugal or maternal tenderness over the bed of sickness; we cannot fail to number among the chief temporal advantages of Christianity, the elevation of the female character. Let justice then be done to their merits; guard their purity; defend their honor; treat them with tenderness and respect.

51. For a knowledge of the human heart, and the characters of men, it is customary to resort to the writings of Shakspeare, and of other dramatic authors, and to biography, novels, tales, and fictitious narratives. But whatever amusement may be derived from such writings, they are not the best authorities for a knowledge of mankind. The most perfect maxims and examples for regulating your social conduct and domestic economy, as well as the best rules of morality and religion, are to be found in the Bible. The history of the Jews presents the true character of man in all its forms. All the traits of human character, good and bad; all the passions of the human heart; all the principles which guide and misguide men in society, are depicted in that short history, with an artless simplicity that has no parallel in modern writings. As to maxims of wisdom or prudence, the Proverbs of Solomon furnish a complete system, and sufficient, if carefully observed, to make any man wise, prosperous, and happy. The observation, that “a soft answer turneth away wrath,” if strictly observed by men, would prevent half the broils and contentions that inflict wretchedness on society and families.

52. Let your first care through life, be directed to support and extend the influence of the Christian religion, and the observance of the sabbath. This is the only system of religion which has ever been offered to the consideration and acceptance of men, which has even probable evidence of a divine original; it is the only religion that honors the character and moral government of the Supreme Being; it is the only religion which gives even a probable account of the origin of the world, and of the dispensations of God towards mankind; it is the only religion which teaches the character and laws of God, with our relations and our duties to him; it is the only religion which assures us of an immortal existence; which offers the means of everlasting salvation, and consoles mankind under the inevitable calamities of the present life.

53. But were we assured that there is to be no future life, and that men are to perish at death like the beasts of the field; the moral principles and precepts contained in the scriptures ought to form the basis of all our civil constitutions and laws. These principles and precepts have truth, immutable truth, for their foundation; and they are adapted to the wants of men in every condition of life. They are the best principles and precepts, because they are exactly adapted to secure the practice of universal justice and kindness among men; and of course to prevent crimes, war, and disorders in society. No human laws dictated by different principles from those in the gospel, can ever secure these objects. All the miseries and evils which men suffer from vice, crime, ambition, injustice, oppression, slavery, and war, proceed from their despising or neglecting the precepts contained in the Bible.

54. As the means of temporal happiness, then, the Christian religion ought to be received, and maintained with firm and cordial support. It is the real source of all genuine republican principles. It teaches the equality of men as to rights and duties; and while it forbids all oppression, it commands due subordination to law and rulers. It requires the young to yield obedience to their parents, and enjoins upon men the duty of selecting their rulers from their fellow citizens of mature age, sound wisdom, and real religion—”men who fear God and hate covetousness.” The ecclesiastical establishments of Europe, which serve to support tyrannical governments, are not the Christian religion, but abuses and corruptions of it. The religion of Christ and his apostles, in its primitive simplicity and purity, unencumbered with the trappings of power and the pomp of ceremonies, is the surest basis of a republican government.

55. Never cease then to give to religion, to its institutions, and to its ministers, your strenuous support. The clergy in this country are not possessed of rank and wealth; they depend for their influence on their talents and learning, on their private virtues and public service. They are the firm supporters of law and good order, the friends of peace, the expounders and teachers of Christian doctrines, the instructors of youth, the promoters of benevolence, of charity, and of all useful improvements. During the war of the revolution, the clergy were generally friendly to the cause of the country. The present generation can hardly have a tolerable idea of the influence of the New England clergy, in sustaining the patriotic exertions of the people,under the appalling discouragements of the war. The writer remembers their good offices with gratitude. Those men therefore who attempt to impair the influence of that respectable order, in this country, attempt to undermine the best supports of religion; and those who destroy the influence and authority of the christian religion, sap the foundations of public order, of liberty and of republican government.

56. For instruction then in social, religious, and civil duties, resort to the scriptures for the best precepts and most excellent examples for imitation. The example of unhesitating faith and obedience in Abraham, when he promptly prepared to offer his son Isaac, as a burnt offering, at the command of God, is a perfect model of that trust in God which becomes dependent beings. The history of Joseph furnishes one of the most charming examples of fraternal affection, and of filial duty and respect for a venerable father, ever exhibited in human life. Christ and his apostles presented, in their lives, the most perfect example of disinterested benevolence, unaffected kindness, humility, patience in adversity, forgiveness of injuries, love to God and to all mankind. If men would universally cultivate these religious affections and virtuous dispositions, with as much diligence as they cultivate human science and refinement of manners, the world would soon become a terrestrial paradise.

See other articles on history:

The Failure of Marxism and Socialism

The Doctrine of Fascism, Fascism Defined by Benito Mussolini

Non Revisionist Politically Incorrect History of Jesus Christ by Johannes von Müller

Non-Revisionist Politically Incorrect History of the World With Biblical References Part 1

Christianity and the Founding of the United States

History of the Battle of King’s Mountain and it’s Heroes: Part I 1765 to May, 1780

American Statesman: Tribute to President George Washington Part 1

Jesus,-Pilot

Non Revisionist Politically Incorrect History of Jesus Christ by Johannes von Müller 1832

JESUS CHRIST

Jesus,-PilotSee also: The Wisdom and Love of God as Shown by His Creation by Noah Webster
I asked God by a confederate soldier

Such was the condition of the human mind, such [was] the declining state of all the old religions, when, in the 750th year from the foundation of Rome, Jesus was born at Bethlehem, the paternal city of king David. His mother was a daughter of the ancient royal house of Israel, which had long ago sunk into obscurity. She had been betrothed to a carpenter of Nazareth in Galilee.

We read in the ancient history of the Jews, that one of the most zealous champions of the law, when after a struggle of many years against increasing idolatry, he had taken flight into the wilderness of Sinai, demanded of God a signal of his presence; the earth trembled, but God was not in the fearful earthquake; a tempest arose, but the blast of the storm marked not the approach of God; at length the prophet heard the low murmur of the wind, and in the still sound of the breeze the voice of God came: — So [too] he came in Jesus Christ.

While the Jews expected a warrior who should liberate Israel from the yoke of the Caesars, who should raise the throne of David above that of Augustus and the Parthians, and establish an everlasting sceptre in the hands of his people, Jesus of Nazareth, supposed to be a native of Galilee, a country which even among the Jews was held in no respect for wisdom and learning, traveled through Judea, and resorted to the temple at Jerusalem, teaching and performing works of benevolence; he paid respect to the authority of the emperor, and the rites of the temple, but set the dignity of his own doctrine above the wisdom which Moses, and which Solomon possessed; while he claimed obedience and faith, as God, he called the meanest fishermen and publicans, when they believed in him, his brethren.

The doctrine of Jesus was none other than that which was impressed by the Creator on the most ancient of the human race, “that He is, and governs all things, in such wise, that no man, even by death, escapes from the recompense of his deeds.” He announced also the important principle, that “those sacerdotal rites, which had long been permitted in indulgence to the rude infancy of nations, and to the imitation of antiquity, but whose insufficiency David and Isaiah had already felt, were now to cease, and that man should henceforth seek to acquire the favor of God by that gentleness and benevolence which He taught and practiced.” Accordingly, Jesus not only made no alteration in the political affairs of the state, but he even introduced no order of priesthood, nor any outward form of religious worship. He connected the remembrance of himself with the enjoyment of the indispensable necessaries of life. Those primitive truths alone, which, since man possesses by his organization ho means of fathoming them, as he scrutinizes the ideas of sensible things, must certainly have been otherwise implanted by God in his creature, were by him renewed, and restored to that purity in which it is necessary that they should from time to time be reinstated, and which at intervals they have received from Providence, but never in so perfect and excellent a manner, or combined with principles so universally beneficial to the human race, as through the mediation of Jesus Christ.

After he had openly testified, in the most impressive manner, that no other completion of the hopes of Israel was to be expected, but this blessing which was destined for all mankind, through the medium of their traditions and system of worship, Jesus knew what he had to suffer from the disappointed vanity, and the selfishness and ambition of the priests, and foresaw with compassion the misfortunes which their prejudices would bring upon their nation. But as Providence by the direction of events had combined in him the most striking traits of the ancient prophecies, by which the Jews might know the Savior of Israel, Jesus had no other purpose than the completion of his destination. Hereupon he was calumniously [slanderous or defamatory] accused by his nation before Pilate the Roman governor, and sacrificed by him to the factious spirit of the Jews. With greater than human fortitude, he suffered death; he rose again to life, confirmed his words, and left a world which was unworthy of his presence.

The work of the Author of mercy and love was completed; the root which he had planted, namely, the renovated doctrine of the patriarchs, in the course of a few centuries spread its shoots beyond the boundaries of the Roman empire, and, together with the veneration of his name, subsists in the most essential points even among the disciples of Mohammed; expiatory sacrifices, polytheism, and the belief in annihilation, have vanished from the greater portion of the human race; the more clearly the true nature of his doctrine is displayed to our view, when purified from the corruptions of calamitous times, the more deeply does its spirit penetrate into the foundations of society; many who have supposed themselves to be his adversaries, have labored in the accomplishment of his plan; and after Christianity, like its founder [Jesus Christ], had long suffered abuse by priest craft, every development of our sentiment for moral goodness, and every successive advancement in philosophy, gives us new feelings, and opens to us more exalted views of its true principles and inestimable worth.

Following Excerpt from: The life of Jesus Christ; with a history of the first propogation of the Gospel By Ezekiel Blomfield, Jesus Christ

The history of Jesus Christ, contained in the writings of the evangelists, may be proved to be credible for the following reasons.

These writings were published very near the times in which Jesus Christ, whose history they contain, is said to have lived. There are three arguments which prove this.

1. The writers of the age immediately following that in which our Lord lived, and of the subsequent ages down to our times, have mentioned the four gospels expressly by their names, have cited many passages out of them, and made numberless allusions both to facts and expressions contained in them, as unto things known and believed by all Christians, which they could not possibly have done had the gospels not been extant at the time we affirm. Farther, by the same succession of writers still remaining, it appears, that at and from the time when we suppose the gospels were published, peculiar regard was paid to them by all Christians; they believed them to contain the only authentic records of Christ’s life, and read them with the other scriptures in all their public assemblies. Hence translations of them were very early made into many different languages, some of which are still remaining. Moreover, exhortations to the people were drawn from them, every doctrine claiming belief was proved out of them, whatever was contrary to them was rejected as erroneous, they were appealed to as the standard in all the disputes which Christians had among themselves, and by arguments drawn from them they confuted heretics and false teachers. That we learn these particulars concerning the gospels from the writings of Christians does not weaken the argument in the least; because if those writings arc as ancient as is commonly believed, be their authors who they will, they necessarily prove the gospels to have been written at the time we suppose. If it is replied that the writings appealed to for the antiquity of the gospels are themselves forged, the answer is, that, being cited by the writers of the age which immediately followed them, and they again by subsequent writers, they cannot be thought forgeries, unless it is affirmed that all the books that ever were published by Christians arc such, which is evidently ridiculous and impossible. Besides, an affirmation of this kind will appear the more absurd, when it is considered the enemies of Christianity themselves bear testimony to the antiquity of the gospels, particularly Porphyry, Julian, Hierocles, and Celsus, who draw several of their objections against the Christian religion from passages of our Lord’s history contained in the gospels. The truth is, these books, being early written, and of general concernment, were eagerly sought after by all, the copies of them multiplied fist, spread far, and came into the hands both of friends and foes; which is the reason that w« have more ancient manuscript copies of the gospels still remaining, than of any other part of the sacred writings, or even of any other ancient book whatsoever.

2. The gospels were published very near the times in which Jesus is said to have lived; because the authors of the gospels call themselves his contemporaries, and affirm that they were eye and ear-witnesses of the transactions they relate, that they had a chief hand in several of them, and that all of “them had happened but a few years before they wrote. Had these things been false, as soon as the books which contained them came abroad, every reader must at once have discovered the fraud, and, by that means, the books themselves must have been universally condemned as mischievous forgeries, and altogether neglected. Whereas, it is well known that they gained universal belief, that they were translated into many different languages, and that copies of them were preserved with the greatest care by those into whose hands they came.

3. In every instance where the evangelists had occasion to mention the manners and customs of the country which was the scene of their history, they have accurately described them; and as often as their subject led them to speak of Jewish affairs; they have done it in such a manner as to shew that they were perfectly acquainted with them. But, considering how extremely fluctuating the posture of affairs ‘among the’ Jews was in that period, by reason of their intercourse with the Romans, such an exact knowledge of all the changes which happened could not possibly have entered Into the suppositions work of any recent impostor. To have acquired such know ledge, the historian must both have been on the spot, and have lived near the times that are the subjects of his history, which is what we contend for in behalf-of the evangelists.

These arguments prove that the gospels were published very near the time wherein they say our Lord lived. If so, they must be acknowledged to contain a true history of bis life. For had any thing been told of him that was not consistent with the knowledge of his countrymen then living, it was in every one’s power to have discovered and exposed the fraud. The great transactions of Christ’s life, as they stand recorded in the gospels, were of the most public nature, and what the whole inhabitants of Judea were concerned in, especially the rulers and priests. His miracles are affirmed to have been performed openly, oftentimes before crowds and in the great towns as well as in remote corners; nay, in the temple itself, under the eye of the grandees, and that during the space of four years. Persons of all ranks and of all sects are introduced, acknowledging the truth of them. His enemies, however bitter, did not deny them, but ascribed thorn to the assistance of demons. Even the chief priests and Pharisees themselves are said to have confessed to one another that he did many miracles, and that if they let him alone all men would believe on him. In some instances, the subjects of his miracles were carried before the magistrates, whose examination rendered those miracles more public and unquestionable. On one occasion, ten thousand people, and, on another, eight thousand, are said to have been miraculously fed by him, many of them must have been still alive when the gospels appeared. He was tried by the supreme council of the Jews, examined by the tetrarch of Galilee and his captains, condemned by the Roman governor, and put to death in the metropolis at. the chief religious solemnity of the Jews, before all the people who bad come up from the different quarters of the country to worship. If these and the like particulars, found in the gospels, had been fictitious, it is natural to think that the Jews, not only in their own country, but every where else, would have disclaimed the facts, both in conversation and writing, immediately upon the first appearance of the books which asserted them, when they could easily have confuted them, the persons of whom such falsehoods were told being many of them then alive; and, by so doing, might have suppressed the Christian religion at once, which most of them looked upon with abhorrence, as an impious schism, diametrically opposite to the institutions of Moses. Yet it does not appear that any of them went this way to work, neither Jew nor Gentile, in the earliest ages, attempting to fix the stain of falsehood on the evangelists, or to disprove any of the facts contained in their histories. The truth is, the gospels were permitted to go abroad every where without being called in question by any person; which could be owing to no cause whatsoever, but to the general belief which then prevailed, and to the particular persuasion of every individual capable of judging in such matters, that all the passages of the gospel history exhibited things certain and indubitable.

In the second place, the gospels are credible for this reason, that the principal facts contained in them are vouched, not only by all the Christian writers now remaining from the earliest ages down to the present time, but by the Jewish writers also, and even by the heathens themselves. For that Jesus Christ lived in Judea under the reign of the emperor Tiberius, both Tacitus, and Suetonius, and the younger Pliny testify. That he gathered disciples, was put to death in an ignominious manner by Pontius Pilate, procurator of Judea, and that after his death he was worshipped as a god, the same authors affirm. Nor does Porphyry himself, nor Julian the emperor, nor any other of the ancient enemies of Christianity, deny these things. On the contrary, they plainly acknowledge that miracles were done by Jesus and his apostles: and, by ascribing them to the power of magic, or to the assistance of demons, which was the solution given by Christ’s enemies in his own life-time, they have left us no room U doubt of the sincerity of their acknowledgments. The writers likewise, of the Talmudic books among the Jews acknowledge the principal transactions of Christ’s life; for they durst not contradict, nor even pretend to doubt of facts so universally known. But they ridiculously imputed them to his having the true writings of the name Jehovah in his possession, which they said he stole out of the temple. In short, as Grotius has well expressed it, there is no history in the world more certain and indubitable than this, which is supported by the concurring testimony, not to say of so many men, but of so many different nations, divided indeed among themselves in other particulars, hut all agreeing in acknowledging the truth of the matters contained in the gospels.

In the third place, the gospels are credible, because the principal facts contained in them are confirmed by monuments of great fame subsisting in every Christian country at this very day. For instance, baptism, in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, the rite by which, from the beginning, men have been initiated into tin: profession of Christianity, keeps up the remembrance of Christ’s having taught those sublime truths concerning the Father Almighty, the Eternal Son, and the Holy Spirit the Comforter, with which the world is now enlightened, as the gospels inform us. The Lord’s supper, celebrated frequently by all believers, prevents the memory of Christ’s death from being lost in any age or country of the world. The stated observation of the first day of the week, in honour of Christ’s resurrection from the dead, hinders that grand event from falling into oblivion. And as these monuments perpetuate the memory, so they demonstrate the truth of the facts contained in the gospel history. For if Jesus Christ neither lived, nor taught, nor wrought miracles, nor died, nor rose again from the dead, it is altogether incredible that so many men, in countries Bo widely distant, should have conspired together to perpetuate such a heap of falsehoods, by beginning the observation of those institutions of baptism, and the Lord’s supper, and the sabbath: incredible likewise, that by continuing the observation of them, they should have imposed those falsehoods upon their posterity. Nor is this all: the truth of the gospel history is demonstrated by a monument of greater fame still, namely, the sudden conversion of a great part of the world from Judaism, and from the many different forms . of heathenism, to Christianity, effected in all countries, notwithstanding the sword of the magistrate, the craft of the priests, the passions of the people, and the pride of the philosophers, were closely combined to support their several national forms of worship, and to crush the Christian faith. Had this total overthrow of all the religious then subsisting been brought to pass by the force of arms, the influence of authority, or the refinements of policy, it had been less to be wondered at. Whereas, having been accomplished by the preaching of twelve illiterate fishermen and their assistants, who were wholly destitute of the advantages of birth, learning, and fortune, and. who, by condemning the established religions of all countries, were every where looked upon as the most flagitious of men, and opposed accordingly with the utmost virulence by all, it is inconceivable how the world could be converted, if the facts recorded in the gospels were false. And what makes this monument of the truth of our Lord’s history very remarkable is, that the world was thus converted in an age justly celebrated for the height to which learning and the polite arts were carried by the Greeks and Romans, the renowned masters of the sciences. Nay, which is still more remarkable, almost the very first triumphs of the Christian religion were in the heart of Greece itself. For churches were soon planted at Corinth, at Thessalonica, and at Philip pi, as is evident from Paul’s epistles directed to the churches in these cities. Even Rome itself, the seat of wealth and empire, was not able to resist the force of truth, many of its inhabitants embracing the Christian faith. Nor was it the lower sort of people only in those cities which first became Christians. Among the early converts, we find men of the highest rank and character, such as Sergius Paulus, proconsul of Cyprus; Erastus, treasurer of Corinth; Dionysius, a member of the senate of Areopagus in Athens; nay, and the domestics of the emperor himself: all of them persons whose education qualified them to judge of an affair of this kind, and whose offices and stations rendered them conspicuous. In process of time, it was not a single person of figure in this city or that nation who obeyed the gospel, but multitudes of the wise, the learned, the noble, and the mighty, in every country, who, being all fully convinced of the truth of the gospel, and impressed with the deepest sense of Christ’s dignity, worshipped him as God, notwithstanding he had been punished with the ignominious death of a malefactor, and they themselves had been educated in the belief of other religions, to desert which they had not the smallest temptation from views of interest; but strongly the contrary, inasmuch as by becoming Christians they denied themselves many sensual gratifications which their own religions indulged them in, lost the affections of their dearest friends who persisted in their ancient errors, and exposed themselves to all manner of sufferings in their persons, reputations, and fortunes. Add to this, that although the conversion of the world was sudden, it Was not on that account unstable, or of short continuance. For the Christian religion has remained to this day in full vigour, during the course of above eighteen hundred years, notwithstanding its enemies every where strenuously attacked it both with arguments and arms. Upon the whole, monuments so remarkable still subsisting in the world loudly proclaim the truth of the gospel history, because their original cannot be accounted for on any supposition but this, that the reports contained in the gospel concerning the doctrines, miracles, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus, after the strictest scrutiny which those who lived nearest to the time and place of action would make, were found to rest on proofs not to be gainsayed. And to entertain the least suspicion of the contrary is to suppose, that when the gospel was first preached all mankind in every country had renounced the common principles of sense and reason, or, in other words, were absolutely mad.

In the fourth place, the character of the evangelists, both as writers and men, renders their history credible in the highest degree. They were eye-witnesses and ministers of the word, that is, of the things which they preached and wrote of, relating Scarce any thing but what they either saw, or heard, or performed themselves-. Now these being all matters obvious to sense, in judging of them, neither acuteness of genius our depth of learning were necessary; but only a sound, understanding, a faithful: memory, and organs of sense rightly disposed. Wherefore, though the evangelists were vulgar.and illiterate men, the subject of their gospels being, for the. most part, matters fallen under the cognizance of sense, and in many of which they were themselves actors, they could not possibly he mistaken in them. And as they could not themselves be deceived in the things of which they wrote, so neither can it be imagined that they had any design to deceive- the world. For it is well known that impostors always propose to themselves some reward of their fraud, riches, it .may be, or honours, or power. If so, those who think the evangelists impostors ought to shew what advantages they promised to themselves by imposing upon the world such a story as their gospels. It is well known that these men set themselves in opposition to all the religions then in being, and required the express renunciation of them under the severest penalties, and, by so doing, made all the world their enemies. Hence it came to pass, that, instead of amassing riches, or wallowing in luxury, the first Christians, but especially the ringleaders of the sect of the Nazarene’s, as they were called, the apostles and evangelists, were every where oppressed with poverty, hunger, nakedness, and wretchedness. Instead, of high offices of trust and power, the bitterest persecutions availed there in all places, and death itself in its most terrible forms. Sordid these things befall them beyond their own expectations, by reason of cross accidents thwarting well laid schemes. They knew what was to happen; their Master foretold it to them [Mat. x. 16.-28, xxiv. 9,. Luke xii. 11, John xvi. 1..4.]; and they themselves expected no other things. [Acts xx. 22..2-1, 1 Cor. iv. 9, &c] Now can it be imagined, that with the known loss of all that is dear in life, with the constant peril of death, and with the certain prospect of damnation, a number of men in their right wits should have propagated what they were sensible was a gross falsehood, and have persisted in the fraud even to death, sealing their testimony with their blood? No: this is a pitch of folly of which human nature is not capable. And therefore we must acknowledge that the evangelists, and all the first witnesses of our Lord’s miracles and doctrine, who, by the providence of God, were generally thus brought to seal their testimony with their blood, were fully persuaded of the truth of what they published in their sermons and writings. It is not to the purpose to reply that enthusiasts have suffered persecution, and even death, in support of false opinions. For although a person’s dying for his opinions does not prove their truth, it certainly proves the martyr’s persuasion of the truth of his opinions. Let this be granted in the case of the evangelists, and the controversy is at an end. For if they themselves really believed what they wrote, and could not possibly have any intention to deceive us, their gospels must doubtless be true, the things contained in them being generally matters obvious to sense, which enthusiasm could by no means discolor, and in judging of which persons of the meanest capacities could not be deceived.

In the last place, the perfect agreement subsisting between the gospels rightly understood, is a circumstance which heightens their credibility not a little. The apparent inconsistencies observable in some of the narrations, when compared, prove undeniably that the evangelists were in no combination to make up their histories and deceive the world. In many instances, these inconsistencies are of such a kind, as would lead one to believe that the subsequent historians did not compare the accounts of particular transactions which they were about to publish with those that were already abroad in the world. Each evangelist represented the matters which are the subjects of his history us his own memory, under the direction of the Spirit, suggested them to him, without considering how far they might be agreeable to the accounts of his brethren historians. At the same time, the easy and full reconciliation of these inconsistencies.,, which arises from a proper knowledge of the gospels, and of the manners and customs of antiquity, proves that the writers were directed by the sober spirit of truth.

CENSORSHIP FACEBOOK HEADS UP!! SUGGESTION 4 EVERYONE ON FB!! VERY IMPORTANT!!!!!!!

I am, or was “Proud Hobbit” on Facebook, until Facebook contacted me yesterday i.e. Thurs/Fri. telling me that I wasn’t using my “real name” and that my account was suspended until I provided my real name, and updated my Facebook account using it. The censorship has begun, I would therefore suggest the following. This is the second time I have been censored on Facebook! After I changed the name, because I frequently refresh screen, one of the first times I did this, after they made me change my name. I got a Facebook notification that my account was temporarily unavailable, to try again in a few minutes. I waited, refreshed again, it took me to Run, Sarah, Run! Sarah Palin 2012 which I have listed on page as my employer.  (Facebook now referred to as FB)

If you are on FB do the following!

Open up Wordpad or Notepad, while still on your FB page,,after Wordpad/Notepad opens,,,,,,go to the page that lists your FB friends, i.e. click the link to left side of your FB page that says Friends,,,after your friends page is open,,,,highlight the name of your first friend like you would when you highlight something you wish to copy and paste,,,,after it is highlighted,,,,scroll down the page,,,,,keep scrolling until you reach the end of your lists of friends,,,,,,hold down shift key,,,,click to the right side of last name,,,,,all names should then be highlighted,,,,,hit ctrl + C,,to copy,,,,go to Wordpad/Notepad,,,click in document window so that you can type in the document,,,,,,hit ctrl + V to paste ,,,,,walla!!! you now have a list of all your FB friends,,,,,update frequently using same method,,

I would also suggest you exchange emails or go to each others FB pages and get the email info off each one,,,if you are like me, though,,none of your FB pages contains your main email address,,,therefore you should contact each friend and get their main email address.

I don’t mean web-based email like hotmail,,gmail,,,etc..I mean the email at your Internet service provider,,they can censure you just as easily on the web-based email providers as they can on facebook. I would also suggest that you exchange phone numbers with your most trusted friends, but always be cautious and remain vigilant for trolls and traitors!

Founders on the 2nd Amendment
Friday at 4:30am

After posting this, I now have to enter the security code to post from my blog on Facebook, never had to before!

I also have a friend that used the name “TheObama Hustle” that had his FB page deleted, no warning nothing. They said he was using a celebrity name. He is skip tracer and had been posting things concerning the lies, fraud, etc. that are Obama. You can see his blog and what he is currently doing here http://theobamahustle@wordpress.com/. He has proceeded to press charges against BO for fraud concerning the land, the Obama’s supposedly bought from Tony Resko.

Facebook Alternative Diaspora Launches in Beta

UPDATE: I am slow to anger, but when that anger comes, it is not something that goes away easily, and it only makes me more determined. I am going to keep a track of my Facebook posts to my James Davis (Proud Hobbit) wall, for you to follow and for my own purposes, records, etc.

Where it started was actually with my first facebook account, FamilyTrees Genealogy. During the debt debate, I would get on Speaker John Boehners FB page. Some leftist trolls got on his page, they were making all kinds of comments attacking him, spreading lies, disinformation, and generally tying up the comments with their banter back and forth, dwarfing all the legitimate comments, from concerned citizens. I watched them do this for two days until I got tired of it. I then started posting links to facts on the net, responding to their comments and arguments. I posted quotes from their supposed hero Thomas Jefferson that refuted, or put into context quotes they were using from him. They didn’t like that, so they started using one of the another Founder,, and put after his name “non-slave owner” I then started using the same founder and put same “non-slave owner” like they did. They then went to Reagan, I refused to argue with them, I just kept posting facts with links to those facts. They then went to Jesus, I knew more than they did on that subject too. They then started calling me names, again I did not stoop to their level, I just kept posting facts. They could not defeat me, so they told FB I was spamming so that FB blocked me from posting publicly. I then got contacted by a friend to start another FB account. Now it has just gone on from there. Follow timeline of my FB page posts to see what happened.

NOTE: **** indicates a separate the set of comments as I and other posted them.

Update; took out comments  to cut down on size, and to not bore people, kept links to FB censorship articles. If you want me to put comments back, please do not hesitate to ask me to.

AUG. 25 2011 UPDATE!! I was adding the following link and others like it to my FB wall, everyone I had to enter the FB Censorship code,,

http://twitpic.com/6b5pfa

I was only able to add 13 of them before I got this message. Keep in mind we are talking my Facebook Wall and I can GUARANTEE NONE of my Friends complained

I added this to the post I put on my wall with the pic below

“OKAY FACEBOOK CENSORS!! THIS IS MY WALL!!! MY FRIENDS DO NOT CARE WHAT I POST TO MY WALL!!! SO I AM GETTING THIS ONLY BECAUSE THE FACEBOOK CENSORS ARE MONITORING MY WALL!! WHY DO YOU FIT SO APPROPRIATELY THE SECOND WORD AS SO MANY TIMES YOU DO WHEN I HAVE TO ENTER YOUR CENSORSHIP CODES, WHICH I RECEIVED WHEN POSTING OUR FALLEN WARRIORS BELOW THIS POST!!!!”

Facebook BETRAYAL of OUR FALLEN WARRIORS

Notice how the second word fits so well the thing they are censoring that I am posting,,,this is a common occurrence!

More instances of Facebook Censorship

Adding links and comments in order of Facebook post,

Facebook Apologizes for Deleting Arizona Governor’s Post

1 hours ago · Like · · Share

Political and religious censorship by Facebook

1 hours ago · Like · · Share

Facebook Censorship: Is Big Brother Watching You? – SocialTimes.com

Proof That Facebook is Censoring You | Ari Herzog

Atlas Shrugs: FACEBOOK CENSORSHIP

Facebook Criticized For Censorship

Facebook celebrates royal wedding by nuking 50 protest groups – Boing Boing

Roger Ebert’s the Latest Victim of Facebook’s Censorship Problem

I’m Tired Of Facebook Censorship Facebook Group about Facebook Censorship

AGAINST FACEBOOK CENSORSHIP and “REPORT” BUTTON Another Facebook Group

Has Facebook Censorship On Riots Already Begun? – WideShut: Alternative News

Facebook censored my posted item

Facebook Censorship, When Social Networks Block the Sharing of Links (or Worse) | Internet Marketing

The downside of Facebook as a public space: Censorship — Tech News and Analysis

Will Facebook Censor for a Shot at the Chinese Market? – Global Spin – TIME.com WHAT FACEBOOK INTEGRITY!!!!!!

Libertarian Peacenik: Fight Facebook Censorship in China

Today’s Lesson: Make Facebook Angry, And They’ll Censor You Into Oblivion

Open Questions Remain in Facebook Censorship flap

UPDATE: I also cannot post articles from my blog to FB chat/messages now, FB will not allow it. I guess they can’t make you use their security censorship codes for those.

Facebook Censoring Some Alternative News Sites While Allowing Hackers To Attack Others :

NOTE: It is now 4:2o AM on Sunday morning Aug 21, 2011

Nikki Sixx Vs Facebook Censorship

6 minutes ago · Like · · Share

Facebook Censorship

NOTE: Got interrupted It is now 4:50 AM on Sunday morning Aug 21, 2011

Swaziland Commentary: SWAZI FACEBOOK CENSORSHIP THREAT

about a minute ago · Like · · Share

Facebook censorship discussions 4:59 AM

Jan Brewer: Facebook ‘Censored’ Post Critical of Obama Immigration Policy | NewsBusters.org

Facebook Censorship or not? (They removed our Fan page again)

It is 5:07 Just tried sending in FB chat link to my blog post The Rise and Fall of my big brother while it let me post this one to chat they made me enter security code, again they will not let me post FB censorship post to chat.

5:15AM Just posted this again to my FB wall to see if I still could, had to enter security code again. I do not want to go to sleep because when I get off and get back on is when they suspend my account. I want to be awake and documenting it if and when they do it again.

Facebook Censorship, Cellphones Blocked in America  5:27 AM

7:40  AM,  Just logged out of my James Davis aka Proud Hobbit FB account and logged back in. Looks like they may just be monitoring me for now, instead of deleting me.It is usually when I go offline and come back on that I get their messages and alerts.

Stay tuned I will update info as I add it to Facebook page and then here!

Your hobbit friend and Patriot brother in arms,,,

THANK YOU GOD 4 YOUR BLESSINGS ON AMERICA!!! GOD BLESS AMERICA!!! AND MAY FREEDOM REIGN!!!