Foundations of America: The American Dream


Editors Note: Freedom cannot exist without morality, integrity and self-restraint. This is something the Founding Fathers were quite aware of. The less morality, integrity and self-restraint people have, the greater the need for laws to restrain the actions of men. The idea of self-governance the Founding Fathers promoted included the governing of your passions & desires, to restrain yourself from bad acts and choices. The Founding Fathers knew a people who could govern their own behavior would not need laws to restrain their freedoms! Moral decline in America is key to our loss of liberty!

How many who say “God bless America” realize they each have a duty to help obtain those blessings by living a righteous life? Not only did our ancestors ask for personal forgiveness at Thanksgiving along with their thanks. They also asked forgiveness for our National sins. A very good practice to follow!

I hear so many people in this present age speak of the American Dream as if, all it were, was to have a job, buy a house, and raise a family. For some it is to become famous, to be adored far and wide for some God given talent as if it were of their own making. To others it is to grow rich or have powers over others. All of these are far from the dreams of the Founding Fathers of America.

The American Dream was, and still is that, All Men are Created Equal. [Acts 10: 22-35 “God is no respecter of persons”]

This means that all men are able to live up to the potential provided them, by the Creator of all things, unencumbered by overlords, masters, oppressive and intrusive men in high places. America was not formed under a king! The ideal of America was, and is that all men are kings, in charge of their own destinies, and their destinies not to be determined by others, others who thought they knew more of what was good for the common people than the people themselves.

Think of it! All men are kings, all under the rule of the one just and true King, the King of Creation, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. [Revelation 19:16]

Before America was formed, the people who came here. had been taught for centuries the Divine Right of Kings, men’s destinies were determined by their birth, you were what your father was, nothing more and nothing less, and the Kings decree was the law. They were nations of men, ruled by men, instead of nations of laws, which all men were made to abide by. In America all men were to have an equal voice in their own governance.

Once the Bible was translated into languages that even the common people could read and understand, they grew to understand that indeed All men are created equal, endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights. The Bible taught them there is only one true King and only one true God, God being the head and Father of Christ, Christ and only Christ being the head of man, no, not one man, but all men! [1 Corinthians 11:3] Consider how Revolutionary this must have seemed at the time. The British loyalists of the War of Independence: if not only because they had the kings favor and positions of wealth, they were loyal also because they feared God and believed in the divine right of kings, they would be heard to say “For God and King”.

The American colonial Patriots believed this phrase “For God and Country” the difference being their King was, and is Christ Jesus, not king George of Great Britain, or any other! According to their understanding it was impossible for them to have a king who was mere flesh and blood such as they themselves were, indeed! Christ being the head of man, King of Kings, Lord of Lords! How could they believe anything else, except that all men were created Kings and Lords over their own destinies, over their own lives, over their own lands, over their own happiness.

Their possessions could no longer be confiscated by the king or his underlings, no longer could they be taxed out of existence and sustenance, no longer could their lives be determined by their birth, instead of their self worth! No longer could the church [Ephesians 4:5] and state tell you how to live, where to live, how to serve God, what God expected of you individually, what your destiny would be, what your station and position in life would be! Indeed you could follow your own loves, determine your own destiny, [Philippians 2:12] have any station or position your God given talent and hard work could afford you, and above all, serve God as your conscience alone dictated!

Indeed this was and still is the True American Dream! Your destiny is not to support the state, but for the state to support your liberty to work out your own destiny, follow your own dreams, pursue your own happiness, and for the state to stay out of the affairs that pertain to God, Christ Jesus, and mans conscience alone, for all men in the era of the Founding Fathers….

All men were raised on the Bible, and their consciences formed early in life, this was the true secret of liberty in America, and why America was given so much, because they were taught to follow the precepts of Christ.

“We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” ~ John Adams

Indeed! it was those precepts that ended slavery and segregation in America. No, America was not perfect at her birth, but then who ever is? What was and is perfect? The work that God performed through men of wisdom, who sat at the feet of King Jesus, who wrote the Foundation Documents that are our birthright and heritage… The Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and Bill of Rights.

The Declaration of Independence declared it to the world, the Constitution sealed it against the powers of men, and the Bill of Rights cemented it against the abuse of government! All men are created equal by one God, and under one King, who all men must answer to for the deeds or misdeeds they commit on others!

What a great and beautiful concept, Revolutionary then, as it still seems to be today, for we are still fighting for the same things in this present time, they fought in their time! Abusive people in positions of power who think they have the right to rule over us, who think we should be thanking them for whatever meager crumbs they let fall from their ivory towers of power!

So yes, we fight, and will continue to fight, to realize the dream, that once was, and still is, America!

In the records of the expedition under Frobisher, which settled the first English colony in America, there is this entry:

“On Monday morning, May twenty-seventh, 1578, aboard the Ayde, we received all, the communion by the minister of Gravesend, prepared as good Christians toward God, and resolute men for all fortunes; and toward night we departed toward Tilbury Hope. Here we highly prayed God, and altogether, upon our knees, gave him due humble and hearty thanks, and Maister Wolfall . . . made unto us a goodbye sermon, exhorting all especially to be thankful to God for his strange and marvelous deliverance in those dangerous places.”

God bless each and every one of you, God bless America and Liberty Forever under Christ Jesus, our Lord and King! America be thankful always for the many blessings God has given to America in all things.


Alexis de Tocqueville author was a Frenchman who visited the United States and traveled here  extensively in the early-mid 1800’s explained the importance of Christianity to America, Americans and to her political, private and civil institutions. He wrote of his experiences in 2 volumes Democracy in America. [Following is an excerpt]


EVERY religion is to be found in juxtaposition to a political opinion, which is connected with it by affinity. If the human mind be left to follow its own bent, it will regulate the temporal and spiritual institutions of society upon one uniform principle; and man will endeavour, if I may use the expression, to harmonize the state in which he lives upon earth, with the state he believes to await him in heaven.

The greatest part of British America was peopled by men who, after having shaken off the authority of the pope, acknowledged no other religious supremacy: they brought with them into the New World a form of Christianity, which I cannot better describe, than by styling it a democratic and republican religion. This sect contributed powerfully to the establishment of a democracy and a republic; and from the earliest settlement of the emigrants, politics and religion contracted an alliance which has never been dissolved…

I have just shown what the direct influence of religion upon politics is in the United States ; but its indirect influence appears to me to be still more considerable, and it never instructs the Americans more fully in the art of being free than when it says nothing of freedom.

The [Christian] sects which exist in the United States are innumerable. They all differ in respect to the worship which is due from man to his Creator; but they all agree in respect to the duties which are due from man to man. Each sect adores the Deity in its own peculiar manner; but all the sects preach the same moral law in the name of God. If it be of the slightest importance to man, as an individual, that his religion should be true, the case of society is not the same. Society has no future life to hope for or to fear; and provided the citizens profess a religion, the peculiar tenets of that religion are of very little importance to its interests. Moreover, almost all the sects of the United States are comprised within the great unity of Christianity, and Christian morality is everywhere the same.

It may be believed without unfairness, that a certain number of Americans pursue a peculiar form of worship, from habit more than from conviction. In the United States the sovereign authority is religious, and consequently hypocrisy must be common; but there is no country in the whole world in which the Christian religion retains a greater influence over the souls of mm than in America; and there can be no greater proof of its utility, and of its conformity to human nature, than that its influence is most powerfully felt over the most enlightened and free nation of the earth.

I have remarked that the members of the American clergy in general, without even excepting those who do not admit religious liberty, are all in favour of civil freedom; but they do not support any particular political system. They keep aloof from parties, and from public affairs. In the United States religion exercises but little influence upon the laws, and upon the details of public opinion; but it directs the manners of the community, and by regulating domestic life, it regulates the state.

I do not question that the great austerity of manners which is observable in the United States, arises, in the first instance, from religious faith. Religion is often unable to restrain man from the numberless temptations of fortune; nor can it check that passion for gain which every incident of his life contributes to arouse ; but its influence over the mind of woman is supreme, and women are the protectors of morals. There is certainly no country in the world where the tie of marriage is so much respected as in America, or where conjugal happiness is more highly or worthily appreciated. In Europe almost all the disturbances of society arise from the irregularities of domestic life. To despise the natural bonds and legitimate pleasures of home, is to contract a taste for excesses, a restlessness of heart, and the evil of fluctuating desires. Agitated by the tumultuous passions which frequently disturb his dwelling, the European is galled by the obedience which the legislative powers of the state exact. But when the American retires from the turmoil of public life to the bosom of his family, he finds in it the image of order and of peace. There his pleasures are simple and natural, his joys are innocent and calm; and as he finds that an orderly life is the surest path to happiness, he accustoms himself without difficulty to moderate his opinions as well as his tastes. While the European endeavours to forget his domestic troubles by agitating society, the American derives from his own home that love of order, which he afterward carries with him into public affairs.

In the United States the influence of religion is not confined to the manners, but it extends to the intelligence of the people. Among the Anglo-Americans, there are some who profess the doctrines of Christianity from a sincere belief in them, and others who do the same because they are afraid to be suspected of unbelief. Christianity, therefore, reigns without any obstacle, by universal consent; the consequence is, as I have before observed, that every principle of the moral world is fixed and determinate, although the political world is abandoned to the debates and the experiments of men. Thus the human mind is never left to wander across a boundless field; and, whatever may be its pretensions, 1t is checked from time to time by barriers which it cannot surmount. Before it can perpetrate innovation, certain primal and immutable principles are laid down, and the boldest conceptions of human de— vice are subjected to certain forms which retard and stop their completion.

The imagination of the Americans, even in its greatest flights, is circumspect and undecided; its impulses are checked, and its works unfinished. These habits of restraint recur in political society, and are singularly favourable both to the tranquillity of the people and to the durability of the institutions it has established. Nature and circumstances concurred to make the inhabitants of the United States bold men, as is sufficiently attested by the enterprising spirit with which they seek for fortune. If the minds of the Americans were free from all trammels, they would very shortly become the most daring innovators and the most implacable disputants in the world. But the revolutionists of America are obliged to profess an ostensible respect for Christian morality and equity, which does not easily permit them to violate the laws that oppose their designs; nor would they find it easy to surmount the scruples of their partisans, even if they were able to get over their own. Hitherto no one, in the United States, has dared to advance the maxim, that everything is permissible with a view to the interests of society; an impious adage, which seems to have been invented in an age of freedom, to shelter all the tyrants of future ages. Thus while the law permits the Americans to do what they please, religion prevents them from conceiving, and forbids them to commit, what is rash or unjust.

Religion in America takes no direct part in the government of society, but it must nevertheless be regarded as the foremost of the political institutions of that country; for if it does not impart a taste for freedom, it facilitates the use of free institutions. Indeed, it is in this same point of view that the inhabitants of the United States themselves look upon religious belief. I do not know whether all the Americans have a sincere faith in their religion; for who can search the human heart; but I am certain that they hold it to be indispensable to the maintenance of republican institutions. This opinion is not peculiar to a class of citizens or to a party, but it belongs to the whole nation, and to every rank of society.

In the United States, if a political character attacks a sect, this may not prevent even the partisans of that very sect, from supporting him; but if he attacks all the sects together, every one abandons him, and he remains alone.

While I was in America, a witness, who happened to be called at the assizes of the county of Chester (state of New York), declared that he did not believe in the existence of God or in the immortality of the soul. The judge refused to admit his evidence, on the ground that the witness had destroyed beforehand all the confidence of the court in what he was about to say)“ The newspapers related the fact without any farther comment.

The New York Spectator of August 23d, 1831, relates the fact in the following terms: The court of common pleas of Chester county (New York), a few days since rejected a witness who declared his disbelief in the existence of God. The presiding judge remarked, that he had not before been admire that there was a man living who did not believe in the existence of God; that this belief constituted the sanction of all testimony in a court of justice: and that he knew of no cause in a Christian country, where a witness had been permitted to testify without such belief.”

[The instance given by the author, of a person offered as a witness having been rejected on the ground that he did not believe in the. existence of a God seems to be adduced to prove either his assertion that the Americans hold religion to be indispensable to the maintenance of republican institutions—or his assertion, that if a man attacks all the, sects together, every one abandons him and he remains alone. But it is questionable how far the fact quoted proves either of these positions. The rule which prescribes as a qualification for a witness the belief in a Supreme Being who will punish falsehood, without which’ he is. deemed wholly incompetent to testify, is established for the protection of personal rights, and not to compel the adoption of any system of religious belief. It came with all our fundamental principles from England as a part of the common law which the colonists brought with them. It is supposed to prevail in every country in Christendom, whatever may be the form of its government ; and the only doubt that arises respecting its existence in France, is created by our author’s apparent surprise at finding such a rule in America.]

The Americans combine the notions of Christianity and of liberty so intimately in their minds, that it is impossible to make them conceive the one without the other; and with them this conviction does not spring from that barren traditionary faith which seems to vegetate in the soul rather than to live.

I have known of societies formed by the Americans to send out ministers of the gospel into the new western states, to found schools and churches there, lest religion should he suffered to die away in those remote settlements, and the rising states be less fitted to enjoy free institutions than the people from which they emanated. I met with wealthy New Englanders who abandoned the country in which they were born, in order to lay the foundations of Christianity and of freedom on the banks of the Missouri or in the prairies of Illinois. Thus religious zeal is perpetually stimulated in the United States by the duties of patriotism. These men do not act from an exclusive consideration of the promises of a future life; eternity is only one motive of their devotion to the cause ; and if you converse with these missionaries of Christian civilization, you will be surprised to find how much value they set upon the goods of this world, and that you meet with a politician where you expected to find a priest. They will tell you that “all the American republics are collectively involved with each other; if the republics of the west were to fall into anarchy, or to be mastered by a despot, the republican institutions which now flourish upon the shores of the Atlantic ocean would be in great peril. It is therefore our interest that the new states should be religious, in order to maintain our liberties.”

Such are the opinions of the Americans: and if any hold that the religious spirit which I admire is the very thing most amiss in America, and that the only element wanting to the freedom and happiness of the human race is to believe in some blind cosmogony, or to assert with Cabanis the secretion of thought by the brain, I can only reply, that those who hold this language have never been in America, and that they have never seen a religious or a free nation. When they return from their expedition, we shall hear what they have to say.

There are persons in France who look upon republican institutions as a temporary means of power, of wealth and distinction; men who are the condottieri [warlords] of liberty, and who fight for their own advantage, whatever he the colours they wear: it is not to these that I address myself. But there are others who look forward to the republican form of government as a tranquil and lasting state, toward which modern society is daily impelled by the ideas and manners of the time, and who sincerely desire to prepare men to be free. When these men attack religious opinions, they obey the dictates of their passions to the prejudice of their interests. Despotism may govern without faith, but liberty cannot. Religion is much more necessary in the republic which they set forth in glowing colours, than in the monarchy which they attack; and it is more needed in democratic republics than in any others. How is it possible that society should escape destruction if the moral tie be not strengthened in proportion as the political tie is relaxed? and what can be done with a people which is its own master, if it be not submissive to the Divinity ’!


Care taken by the Americans to separate the Church from the State.–The Laws, pub. lic Opinion, and even the Exertions of the Clergy concur to promote this end.—Influence of Religion upon the Mind, in the United States, attributable to this Cause. –Reason of this.—What is the natural State of Men with regard to Religion at the present Time.—What are the peculiar and incidental Causes which prevent Men, in certain Countries, from arriving at this State.

THE philosophers of the eighteenth century explained the gradual decay of religious faith in a very simple manner. Religious zeal, said they, must necessarily fail, the more generally liberty is established and knowledge diffused. Unfortunately, facts are by no means in accordance with their theory. There are certain populations in Europe whose unbelief is only equalled by their ignorance and their debasement, while in America one of the freest and most enlightened nations in the world fulfils all the outward duties of religion with fervour.

Upon my arrival in the United States, the religious aspect of the country was the first thing that struck my attention ; and the longer I stayed there, the more did I perceive the great political consequences resulting from this state of things, to which I was unaccustomed. In France I had almost always seen the spirit of religion and the spirit of freedom pursuing courses diametrically opposed to each other; but in America I found that they were intimately united, and that they reigned in common over the same country. My desire to discover the causes of this phenomenon increased from day to day. In order to satisfy it, I questioned the members of all the different sects; and I more especially sought the society of the clergy, who are the depositaries of the different persuasions, and who are more especially interested in their duration. As a member of the Roman catholic church I was more particularly brought into contact with several of its priests, with whom I became intimately acquainted. To each of these men I expressed my astonishment and I explained my doubts: I found that they differed upon matters of detail alone; and that they mainly attributed the peaceful dominion of religion in their country, to the separation of church and state. I do not hesitate to affirm that during my stay in America,l did not meet with a single individual, of the clergy or of the laity, who was not of the same opinion upon this point. .

This led me to examine more attentively than I had hitherto done, the station which the American clergy occupy in political society. I learned with surprise that they filled no public appointments; not one of them is to be met with in the administration, and they are not even represented in the legislative assemblies. In several states the law excludes them from political life; public opinion in all. And when I came to inquire into the prevailing spirit of the clergy, I found that most of its members seemed to retire of their own accord from the exercise of power, and that they made it the pride of their profession to abstain from politics.

I heard them inveigh against ambition and deceit, under whatever political opinions these vices might chance to lurk; but I learned from their discourses that men are not guilty in the eye of God for any opinions concerning political government, which they may profess with sincerity, any more than they are for their mistakes in building a house or in driving a furrow. I perceived that these ministers of the gospel eschewed all parties, with the anxiety attendant upon personal interest. These facts convinced me that what I had been told was true; and it then became my object to investigate their causes, and to inquire how it happened that the real authority of religion was increased by a state of things which diminished its apparent force: these causes did not long escape my researches.

The short space of threescore years can never content the imagination of man ; nor can the imperfect joys of this world satisfy his heart. Man alone, of all created beings, displays a natural contempt of existence, and yet a boundless desire to exist; he scorns life, but he dreads annihilation. These different feelings incessantly urge his soul to the contemplation of a future state, and religion directs his musings thither. Religion, then, is simply another form of hope; and it is no less natural to the human heart than hope itself. Men cannot abandon their religious faith without a kind of aberration of intellect, and a sort of violent distortion of their true natures; but they are invinciny brought back to more pious sentiments; for unbelief is an accident, and faith is the only permanent state of mankind. If we only consider religious institutions in a purely human point of view, they may be said to derive an inexhaustible element of strength from man himself, since they belong to one of the constituent principles of human nature.

I am aware that at certain times religion may strengthen this influence, which originates in itself, by the artificial power of the laws, and by the support of those temporal institutions which direct society. Religions, intimately united to the governments of the earth, have been known to exercise a sovereign authority derived from the twofold source of terror and of faith; but when a religion contracts an alliance of this nature, I do not hesitate to affirm that it commits the same error, as a man who should sacrifice his future to his present welfare; and in obtaining a power to which it has no claim, it risks that authority which is rightfully its own. When a religion founds its empire upon the desire of immortality which lives in every human heart, it may aspire to universal dominion: but when it connects itself with a government, it must necessarily adopt maxims which are only applicable to certain nations. Thus, in forming an alliance with a political power, religion augments its authority over a few, and forfeits the hope of reigning over all.

As long as a religion rests upon those sentiments which are the consolation of all affliction, it may attract the affections of mankind. But if it be mixed up with the bitter passions of the world, it may be constrained to defend allies whom its interests, and not the principles of love, have given to it ; or to repel as antagonists men who are still attached to its own spirit, however opposed they may be to the powers to which it is allied. The church cannot share the temporal power of the state, without being the object of a portion of that animosity which the latter excites.

The political powers which seem to be most firmly established have frequently no better guarantee for their duration, than the opinions of a generation, the interests of the time, or the life of an individual. A law may modify the social condition which seems to be most fixed and determinate; and with the social condition everything else must change. The powers of society are more or less fugitive, like the years which we spend upon the earth ; they succeed each other with rapidity like the fleeting cares of life; and no government has ever yet been founded upon an invariable disposition of the human heart, or upon an imperishable interest.

As long as religion is sustained by those feelings, propensities, and passions, which are found to occur under the same forms, at all the different periods of history, it may defy the efforts of time ; or at least it can only be destroyed by another religion. But when religion clings to the interests of the world, it becomes almost as fragile a thing as the powers of earth. It is the only one of them all which can hope for immortality; but if it be connected with their ephemeral authority, it shares their fortunes, and may fall with

those transient passions which supported them for a day. The alliance which religion contracts with political powers must needs be onerous to itself; since it does not require their assistance to live, and by giving them its assistance it may be exposed to decay.

The danger which I have just pointed out always exists, but it is not always equally visible. In some ages governments seem to be imperishable, in others the existence of society appears to be more precarious than the life of man. Some constitutions plunge the citizens into a lethargic somnolence, and others rouse them to feverish excitement. When government appears to be so strong, and laws so stable, men do not perceive the dangers which may accrue from a union of church and state. When governments display so much inconstancy, the danger is self-evident, but it is no longer possible to avoid it; to be effectual, measures must be taken to discover its approach.

In proportion as a nation assumes a democratic condition of society, and as communities display democratic propensities, it becomes more and more dangerous to connect religion with political institutions ; for the time is coming when authority will be bandied from hand to hand, when political theories will succeed each other, and when men, laws, and constitutions, will disappear or be modified from day to day, and this not for a season only, but unceasingly. Agitation and mutability are inherent in the nature of democratic republics, just as stagnation and inertness are the law of absolute monarchies.

If the Americans, who change the head of the government once in four years, who elect new legislators every two years, and renew the provincial officers every twelvemonth ; if the Americans, who have abandoned the political world, to the attempts of innovators, had not placed religion beyond their reach, where could it abide in the ebb and flow of human opinions? where would that respect which belongs to it be paid, amid the struggles of faction ‘? and what would become of its immortality in the midst of perpetual decay ’! The American clergy were the first to perceive this truth, and to act in conformity with it. They saw that they must renounce their religious influence, if they were to strive for political power; and they chose to give up the support of the state, rather than to share its vicissitudes.

In America, religion is perhaps less powerful than it has been at certain periods in the history of certain peoples ; but its influence is more lasting. It restricts itself to its own resources, but of those none can deprive it: its circle is limited to certain principles, but those principles are entirely its own, and under its undisputed control.

On every side in Europe we hear voices complaining of the absence of religious faith, and inquiring the means of restoring to religion some remnant of its pristine authority. It seems to me that We must first attentively consider what ought to be the natural state of men with regard to religion, at the present time ; and when we know what we have to hope and to fear, we may discern the end to which our efforts ought to be directed.

The two great dangers which threaten the existence of religions are schism and indifference. In ages of fervent devotion, men sometimes abandon their religion, but they only shake it off in order to adopt another. Their faith changes the objects to which it is directed, but it suffers no decline. The old religion, then, excites enthusiastic attachment or bitter enmity in either party ; some leave it with anger, others cling to it with increased devotedness, and although persuasions differ, irreligion is unknown. Such, however, is not the case when a religious belief is secretly undermined by doctrines which may be termed negative, since they deny the truth of one religion without affirming that of any other. Prodigious revolutions then take place in the human mind, without the apparent co-operation of the passions of man, and almost without his knowledge. Men lose the objects of their fondest hopes, as if through forgetfulness. They are carried away by an imperceptible current which they have not the courage to stem, but which they follow with regret, since it bears them from a faith they love, to a skepticism that plunges them into despair.

In ages which answer to this description, men desert their religious opinions from lukewarmness rather than from dislike ; they do not reject them, but the sentiments by which they were once fostered disappear. But if the unbeliever does not admit religion to be true, he still considers it useful. Regarding religious institutions in a human point of view, he acknowledges their influence upon manners and legislation. He admits that they may serve to make men live in peace with one another, and to prepare them gently for the hour of death. He regrets the faith which he has lost ; and as he is deprived of a treasure which he has learned to estimate at its full value, he scruples to take it from those who still possess it.

On the other hand, those who continue to believe, are not afraid openly to avow their faith. They look upon those who do not share their persuasion as more worthy of pity than of opposition; and they are aware, that to acquire the esteem of the unbelieving, they are not obliged to follow their example. They are hostile to no one in the world; and as they do not consider the society in which they live as an arena in which religion is bound to face its thousand deadly foes, they love their contemporaries, while they condemn their weaknesses, and lament their errors.

As those who do not believe, conceal their incredulity; and as those who believe, display their faith, public opinion pronounces itself in favour of religion: love, support, and honour, are bestowed upon it, and it is only by searching the human soul, that we can detect the wounds which it has received. The mass of mankind, who are never without the feeling of religion, do not perceive anything at variance with the established faith. The instinctive desire of a future life brings the crowd about the altar, and opens the hearts of men to the precepts and consolations of religion.

But this picture is not applicable to us; for there are men among us who have ceased to behave in Christianity, without adopting any other religion ; others who are in the perplexities of doubt, and who already affect not to believe; and others, again, who are afraid to avow that Christian faith which they still cherish in secret.

Amid these lukewarm partisans and ardent antagonists, a small number of believers exist, who are ready to brave all obstacles, and to scorn all dangers, in defence of their faith. They have done violence to human weakness, in order to rise superior to public opinion. Excited by the effort they have made, they scarcely know where to stop; and as they know that the first use which the French made of independence, was to attack religion, they look upon their contemporaries with dread, and they recoil in alarm from the liberty which their fellow-citizens are seeking to obtain. As unbelief appears to them to be a novelty, they comprise all that is new in one indiscriminate animosity. They are at war with their age and country, and they look upon every opinion which is put forth there as the necessary enemy of the faith.

Such is not the natural state of men with regard to religion at the present day; and some extraordinary or incidental cause must be at work in France, to prevent the human mind from following its original propensities, and to drive it beyond the limits at which it ought naturally to stop.

I am intimately convinced that this extraordinary and incidental cause is the close connexion of politics and religion. The unbelievers of Europe attack the Christians as their political opponents, rather than as their religious adversaries; they hate the Christian religion as the opinion of a party, much more than as an error of belief; and they reject the clergy less because they are the representatives of the Divinity, than because they are the allies of authority.

In Europe, Christianity has been intimately united to the powers of the earth. Those powers are now in decay, and it is, as it were, buried under their ruins. The living body of religion has been bound down to the dead c0rpse of superannuated polity; cut the bonds which restrain it, and that which is alive will rise once more. I know not what could restore the Christian church of Europe to the energy of its earlier days; that power belongs to God alone; but it may be the effect of human policy to leave the faith in all the full exercise of the strength which it still retains.

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The Magna Carta (Click to enlarge)

The Magna Carta (Click to enlarge)

Sharing this article by Rev. Robert Hall mainly for the quote in the first paragraph.



A Concise View of the Constitution of England. By George Custance. Dedicated, by permission, to William Wilberforce, Esq., M.P.for the County of York. Kidderminster: Gower; London: Longman and Co.; Hatchard. 1808.

It were surely to be wished that every man had a competent acquaintance with the laws and constitution of the country to which he belongs. Patriotism is a blind and irrational impulse, unless it is founded on a knowledge of the blessings we are called to secure, and the privileges we propose to defend. In a tyrannical state it is natural for the ruling power to cherish political ignorance, which can alone reconcile men to the tame surrender of their natural rights. The diffusion of light and knowledge is very unfavourable to ill-founded pretensions of every sort, but to none more than the encroachments of arbitrary power and lawless violence. The more we explore the recesses of a dungeon, the less likely are we to be reconciled to take up our residence in it. But the venerable fabric of the British constitution, our hereditary mansion, whether it be tried by the criterion of convenience or of beauty, of ancient prescription or of practical utility, will bear the most rigid examination; and the more it is contemplated will be the more admired.

The Romans were so conscious of the importance of imparting to the rising generation an early knowledge of their laws and constitution, that the contents of the twelve tables were committed to memory, and formed one of the first elements of public instruction. They were sensible that what lays hold of the mind at so early a period is not only likely to be long remembered, but is almost sure to command veneration and respect. We are not aware that similar attempts have been made to render the British youth acquainted with the principles of our admirable constitution, not inferior surely to that of the Roman republic; a defect in the system of education which the circumstances of the present crisis loudly call upon us to supply. When our existence as an independent nation is threatened, when unexampled sacrifices must be made, and, perhaps, the utmost efforts of patience and of persevering courage exerted for our preservation, an attachment to that constitution which is the basis of all our prosperity, cannot be too zealously promoted or too deeply felt. It is a just and enlightened estimate of the invaluable blessings that constitution secures, which alone can make us sustain our present burdens without repining, as well as prepare us for greater privations and severer struggles. For this reason we cannot but look upon the performance before us as a most seasonable publication. One cause of the attention of youth being so little directed to our national laws and constitution, in schools, is probably the want of suitable books. We have an abundance of learned and able writers on these subjects; but few, if any, that are quite adapted to the purpose we are now speaking of. Millar’s is a very profound and original work; but it supposes a great deal of previous knowledge, without which it can be scarcely understood, and is in every view better adapted to aid the researches of an antiquary, or the speculations of a philosopher, than to answer the end of an elementary treatise. De Lolme’s performance may be deemed more suitable; yet, able and ingenious as it is, it labours under some essential deficiencies, considered in the light of an elementary work. There is in it a spirit of refined speculation, an eagerness to detect and display latent, unthought-of excellences, in the frame of government, which is very remote from the simplicity requisite in the lessons of youth. Of Blackstone’s Commentaries it would be presumptuous in us to attempt an eulogium, after Sir William Jones has pronounced it to be the most beautiful outline that was ever given of any science. Nothing can exceed the luminous arrangement, the vast comprehension, and, we may venture to add from the best authorities, the legal accuracy of this wonderful performance, which, in style and composition, is distinguished by an unaffected grace, a majestic simplicity, which can only be eclipsed by the splendour of its higher qualities. Admirable, however, as these commentaries are, it is obvious that they are much too voluminous and elaborate to answer the purpose of an introduction to the study of the English constitution. We do, therefore, most sincerely congratulate the public on the appearance of a work which we can safely recommend as ‘well fitted to supply a chasm in our system of public instruction. The book before us is, in ever}’ view, well adapted for the instruction of youth: the clear and accurate information h conveys upon a most important subject, and the truly Christian tincture of its maxims and principles, are well calculated to enlarge the understanding and improve the heart. We beg leave particularly to recommend it to the attention of schools, in which, we conceive, a general acquaintance with the laws and constitution of the country might be cultivated with much advantage, as forming a proper preparation for the active scenes of life. Legal provisions for the security of the best temporal interests of mankind are the result of so much collective wisdom and experience, and are so continually conversant with human affairs, that we know no study more adapted to invigorate the understanding, and at the same time to give a practical turn to its speculations. The close cohesion of its parts tends to make the mind severely argumentative, while its continual relation to the state of society and its successive revolutions fences it in on the side of metaphysical abstraction and useless theories. What we look upon (for the reasons already mentioned) to be a most useful and interesting study at all times, we would earnestly recommend as an indispensable duty at the present crisis.

Of the merits of the work before us, the public may form some judgment, when we inform them that it contains whatever is most interesting to the general reader in Blackstone, together with much useful information derived from Professor Christian, De Lolme, and various other eminent authors. Some will be ready to accuse the writer of having carried his partiality toward whatever is established too far; nor dare we say the charge is entirely unfounded. We are not disposed, however, to be severe upon him on this account. We wish to see the minds of our youth preoccupied with a strong bias in favour of our national institutions. We would wish to see them animated by a warm and generous enthusiasm, and to defer the business of detecting faults and exposing imperfections to a future period. Let us only be allowed to remark, that this policy should be temperately employed; lest the mind should suffer a revulsion, and pass, perhaps abruptly, from implicit admiration to the lest, indignant at having been misled, it censure for undistinguishing applause.

We wish our author had, in common with Blackstone, expressed his disapprobation of the severity of our criminal code. The multiplicity of capital punishments we shall always consider as a reproach to the English nation; though, numerous as they are, they bear no proportion to what they ‘would be were the law permitted to take its course. The offences deemed capital by the common law are few; the sanguinary complexion of the criminal law, as it now stands, has arisen from the injudicious tampering of the legislature. To us it appears evident, that the certainty of punishment will restrain offenders more than its severity.; and that, when men are tempted to transgress, they do not weigh the emolument they had in view against the penalty awarded by law, but simply the probability of detection and punishment against that of impunity. Let the punishments be moderate, and this will be the most effectual means of rendering them certain. While nothing can exceed the trial by jury, and the dignified impartiality with which justice is administered, we are compelled to look upon the criminal code with very different emotions, and earnestly to wish it were carefully revised, and made more humane, simple, and precise.

As little can we concur with the author before us in the defence he sets up of the donation of pensions and where there are no pretensions of personal merit or honorable services. Standing quite aloof from party politic must affirm, that to whatever extent such a practice exactly in the same proportion is it a source of public calamity and disgrace. To look at it, as our author does, only in a pecuniary view, is to neglect the principal consideration. It is not merely or chiefly as a waste of public money that the granting of sinecures and pensions to the undeserving ought to be condemned; the venality and corruption it indicates and produces is its worst feature, and an infallible symptom of a declining state. With these exceptions, we have accompanied the author with almost uninterrupted pleasure, and have been highly gratified with the good sense, the extensive information, and the unaffected piety he displays throughout the work. Though a firm and steady churchman himself, be manifests a truly Christian spirit toward the Protestant dissenters; and is so far from looking with an evil eye on the large toleration they enjoy, that he contemplates with evident satisfaction the laws on which that toleration is founded.

Of the style of this work, it is but justice to say that, without aspiring to any high degree of ornament, it is pure, perspicuous, and correct, well suited to the subject on which it is employed.

As a fair specimen of Mr. C.’s manner of thinking, we beg leave to lay before our readers the following just and appropriate remarks on dueling:—

“Deliberate dueling falls under the head of express malice; and the law of England has justly fixed the crime and punishment of murder upon both the principal and accessaries of this most unchristian practice. Nothing more is necessary with us, to check this daring violation of all law, than the same firmness and integrity in the trial of duellists which so eminently distinguish an English jury on all other “occasions.

“Perhaps it will be asked, what are men of honour to do, if they must not appeal to the pistol and sword? The answer is obvious: if one gentleman has offended another, he cannot give a more indisputable proof of genuine courage, than by making a frank acknowledgment of his fault, and asking forgiveness of the injured party. On the other hand, if he have received an affront, he ought freely to forgive, as he hopes to be forgiven of God. And if either of the parties aggravate the matter by sending a challenge to fight, the other must not be a partaker of sin, if he would obey God rather than man.

“Still it will be said that a military or naval man, at least, must not decline a challenge, if he would maintain the character of a man of courage. But is it not insulting the loyalty and good sense of the brave defenders of our laws, to imagine that they of all men must violate them to preserve their honour; since the king has expressly forbidden any military man to send a challenge to fight a duel, upon pain of being cashiered, if an officer; and of suffering corporal punishment, if a non-commissioned officer or private soldier? Nor ought any officer or soldier to upbraid another for refusing a challenge, whom his Majesty positively declares he considers as having only acted in obedience to his (fn. 1) royal orders; and fully acquits of any disgrace that may be attached to his conduct. Besides, what necessary connection is there between the fool-hardiness of one who risks the eternal perdition of his neighbour and of himself in an unlawful combat, and the patriotic bravery of him who, when duty calls, boldly engages the enemy of his king and country? None will dispute the courage of the excellent Colonel Gardiner, who was slain at the battle of Preston Pans, in the rebellion of 1745. Yet he once refused a challenge, with this dignified remark: ‘I fear sinning, though I do not fear fighting.’ (Fn.2) The fact is, that fighting a duel is so far from being a proof of a man’s possessing true courage, that it is an infallible mark of his cowardice. For he is influenced by ‘the fear of man,’ whose praise he loveth more than the praise of God.”

Fn.1  See ‘ Articles of War,’ sec. 7.”

Fn.2 See Doddridge’s ‘Life of Colonel Gardiner,’ an interesting piece of biography, worthy the perusal of every officer in the army and navy.

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THE AMERICAN PATRIOT Class Day Oration By J. B. Chaddock Law, 1890


THE AMERICAN PATRIOT Class Day Oration By J. B. Chaddock Law, 1890

Love of country is characteristic of no clan, of no people. The Swede has the same reverence for his snow capped, pine ribbed, mountain home, that the Switzer has for the vine-clad steepes and classical chasms of his own sunny land. It would be hard to conceive of a man with a heart so cold and barren that the flame of patriotism could not be kindled on its altar. Love of country is inherent in man kind, and as the babe mourns for the mother it has lost, and from whose breast it has drawn the sustenance of life; so man bereft of country and home, mourns and mourns till death cuts the fetters and sends the spirit homo. In that love the Siberian exile forgets his wrongs and kneeling asks God that a brighter sun may shine on his native land. No matter what indignities he is made to suffer it is “hisown his native land” and the love born with his childhood and nurtured in his maturer years, outweighs the fetters that bind the flesh. If a nation would preserve its individuality its citizens must be patriotic. Not that blind devotion to country which is characteristic of some people, but devotion to a principle in which justice and humanity are blended. It was this devotion that enabled Rome to become the “Eternal City.” It made Switzerland a republic. It protected Holland against the sea and the forces of the enemy. To it Norway owes its independence and it has come to us in the privileges we enjoy under a free government. The story of [William] Tell may be a myth, a creation of the imagination. yet as an example, it has been productive of great good. When the cloud of oppression o’er shadowed our feeble colonists, from every hamlet came Tells innumerable. Patriots who looked beyond, who penetrated the veil that hid the future, saw rise above the wreckage of war an ideal nation. A nation in which man should be sovereign of his own thoughts and personal liberty paramount.

Among those who stood forth as the champions of national independence we find the name of [Patrick] Henry. As he rose in the house of Burgesses to defend the resolutions condemning the “stamp act,” I would liken him to Leonidas at Thermopylae, but Leonidas had followers. I would liken him to Horatius at the bridge, but Horatius had a friend on either hand, I would liken him to Napoleon at the bridge of Lodi, but the great general had an army at his back. Henry stood alone actuated only by such motives as bids the patriot stand in defense of his country, the father in defence of his home, the mother in defense of her offspring. With his eloquence he kindled the watch fires of the Revolution; with his logic he strengthened and sustained the cause, and though history may forget to do him honor, the name of Henry will endure for all time, for it is preserved in the hearts of a grateful people.

Jefferson too, the scholar, the states man. What a tower of strength in our darkened hour. The Magna Charta adopted at Runny mede in 1215 found its prototype in the Declaration of Independence as it came from the pen of Jefferson. It was not an experiment. It was not a fiction. It was a reality. It was the assertion of those rights with which it has pleased God to endow us, and for the protection and enjoyment of those rights the signers of that instrument mutually pledged each other “their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor.”

Read the history of the world. Search the archives of every civilized nation on the globe and find for me its equal. The signers of that instrument were patriots in the truest sense of the word. Men whose devotion was not to country alone but to principle as well. Minds that reached beyond the narrow confines of state bounderies. Men that expended their best energies in the founding of a nation that should embody in its fundamental principle that higher law.

Who can forget the services of [Thomas] Jefferson and of [Richard Henry] Lee, of [Benjamin] Franklin and of [John / Samuel] Adams?

It was such men as these that compelled the great [William Pitt; Earl of] Chatham to admit, that “for solidity of reasoning, force of sagacity, and wisdom of conclusion, under such complication of circumstances, no nation or body of men can stand in preference to the general congress at Philadelphia.” They were not theorists. They were not idealists. They were practical men. They assigned to every cause its effect. They established a constitutional form of government that has proved a marvel of perfection. Other nations stood aghast They looked upon it with distrust. They predicted the direst calamities, but in the end they have accepted it themselves.

Had I the time to review the lives of the patriots of 1776, I would not forget the patriot who donned his suit of home-spun, took from the wall of his cabin the old flint-lock, kissed his wife and family good-by, and was away to the defence of his country at Monmouth and Bunker Hill. I would not forget the patriot whom the wealth of a king could not corrupt. Neither would I forget the patriots who suffered all the horrors of war during that terrible winter at Valley Forge.

But I would pause here and pay tribute to one who was a stranger to our shores. He came not for conquest. He came not when victory was assured. He came not as an adventurer seeking self aggrandizement, for in his veins flowed the blood of Royalty. He came to succor and to aid. He left the vine-clad hills of sunny France and united his fortunes with ours. He shared the hardships of camp and field with our own [George] Washington and all honor to France for she gave us [Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de] Lafayette.

There is another, but how different. What a comparison. He was a native of our own land. Come with me into the historical grave-yard of the past and I will point out for you his last resting place. It is not here where monuments rise in commemoration of valiant deeds. Not here where its mounds are kept green with the praise of an admiring people. But to its most neglected corner where weeds grow thick and rank o’er its forgotten graves. Its paths are unkept. None walk here for it is ghostly ground. Stand aside while I part the weeds that hide this broken slab. Bend lower that you may read the name upon its base. It is— it is the name of Benedict Arnold. Arnold the patriot. Arnold the traitor. What paradox have we here? Patriot at Quebec and Saratoga. Patriot till the glitter of English gold corrupted the better man and left his name a blot upon the history of his country. Let him rest in peace. He will one day stand at the bar of justice, before a righteous judge. His life may be vindicated and it may not. Who shall say? Read what history you will, then read your own and in it you will find the ideal patriot. It will not be one who for the sake of conquest has sought to overthrow a republic. It will not be one who, to satiate his ambition revels in scenes of carnage. It will not be one who, disappointed in his aspirations, sells his country for a bit of gold. But it will be one who, like Nathan Hale, under all circumstances, ever kept before his mind the principles for which lie fought. One who would sacrifice all rather than betray the slightest trust. One who preferred death upon the scaffold with no friend near but his God and the consciousness of a duty done. In short it will be an American patriot. For such an one I would write his epitaph not upon granite, for it would crumble with age. Not upon marble, for the moss would hide it. Not in the archives of his country, for it might be lost. I would write it in the language, the poetry, the music of his people. I would write it on the hearts of his countrymen.

Source: The Michigan Argonaut, Volume 8

Etiquette of the National Emblem i.e. Flag

Patch_these-colors-dont-run-us-flagEtiquette of the Stars and Stripes, i.e. The American Flag

Code Drafted by Representatives of Sixty-eight Organizations of National Scope Under Lead of American Legion.

National Flag Represents a Living Country and is Itself Considered a Living Thing

On Flag Day, June 14, 1923, representatives of 68 organizations, including the Bureau of Education, met in Washington for a conference, called by and conducted under the auspices of the American Legion, to draft an authentic code of flag etiquette. President Harding opened the conference with an address, which was followed by addresses by Theodore Roosevelt, Assistant Secretary of the Navy, John J. Tigert, United States Commissioner of Education, and others.

The code drafted by that conference is presented here. Although those rules have no official Government sanction, they represent the authoritative opinion of the principal patriotic bodies of the United States and of Army and Navy experts, and are binding on all of the organizations which took part in the gathering. School officers and teachers will find the rules worth calling to the notice of school pupils and citizens generally.

These rules have been published in a booklet by the Service Star Legion, and is for sale by that organization. The cautions on the use of the flag have been published in poster form, suitable for displaying in classrooms. Further information may be had from Mrs. William T. Davies, chairman of national patriotic education, 117 North Fourth Street, Martins Ferry, Ohio.

Fundamental Rules of Heraldry Observed

There are certain fundamental rules of heraldry which, if understood generally, would indicate the proper method of displaying the flag. The matter becomes a very simple one if it is kept in mind that the national flag represents the living country and is itself considered as a living thing. The union [white stars on a field of blue] of the flag is the honor point; the right arm is the sword arm, and therefore the point of danger and hence the place of honor.

1. The flag should be displayed only from sunrise to sunset, or between such hours as may be designated by proper authority. It should be displayed on National and State holidays and on historic and special occasions. The flag should always be hoisted briskly and lowered slowly and ceremoniously.

2. When carried in a procession with another flag or flags, the flag of the United States should be either on the marching right, i. e., the flag’s own right, or when there is a line of other flags the flag of the United States may be in front of the center of that line.

3. When displayed with another flag against a wall from crossed staffs, the flag of the United States should be on the right, the flag’s own right, and its staff should be in front of the staff of the other flag.

4. When a number of flags are grouped and displayed from staffs, the flag of the United States should be in the center or at the highest point of the group.

National Flag Above All Others

5. When flags of States or cities or pennants of societies are flown on the same halyard with the flag of the United States. the national flag should always be at the peak. When flown from adjacent staffs the Hag of the United States should be hoisted first. No flag or pennant should be placed above or to the right of the flag of the United States.

6. When flags of two or more nations are displayed they should be flown from separate staffs of the same height and the flags should be of approximately equal size. International usage forbids the display of the flag of one nation above that of another nation in time of peace.

7. When the flag is displayed from a staff projecting horizontally or at an angle from the window sill, balcony, or front of building, the union of the flag should go clear to the head of the staff unless the flag is at half staff.

8. When the flag of the United States is displayed in a manner other than by being flown from a staff it should be displayed flat, whether indoors or out. When displayed either horizontally or vertically against a wall, the union should be uppermost and to the flag’s own right, i. e., to the observer’s left. When displayed in a window it should be displayed the same way, that is, with the union or blue field to the left of the observer in the street. When festoons, rosettes, or drapings of blue, white, and red are desired, bunting should be used, but never the flag.

Union to North or East

9. When displayed over the middle of the street, as between buildings, the flag of the United States should be suspended vertically with the union to the north in an east-and-west street or to the east in a northand-south street.

10. When used on a speaker’s platform, the flag should be displayed above and behind the speaker. It should never be used to cover the speaker’s desk nor to drape over the front of the platform. If flown from a staff it should be on the speaker’s right.

11. When used in unveiling a statue or monument, the flag should not be allowed to fall to the ground but should be carried aloft to wave out, forming a distinctive feature during the remainder of the ceremony.

12. When flown at half-staff, the flag is first hoisted to the peak and then lowered to the half-staff position, but before lowering the flag for the day it is raised again to the peak. On Memorial Day, May 30, the flag is displayed at half-staff from sunrise until noon and at full staff from noon until sunset, for the Nation lives and the flag is a symbol of the living Nation.

13. When used to cover a casket the flag should be placed so that the union is at the head and over the left shoulder. The flag should not be lowered into the grave nor allowed to touch the ground. The casket should be carried foot first.

14. When the flag is displayed in church it should be from a staff placed on the congregation’s right as they face the clergyman. The service flag, the State flag, or other flags should be at the left of the congregation. If in the chancel, the flag of the United States should be placed on the clergyman’s right as he faces the congregation and other flags on his left.

15. When the flag is in such a condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display it should not be cast aside or used in any way that might be viewed as disrespectful to the national colors, but should be destroyed as a whole, privately, preferably by burning or by some other method in harmony with the reverence and respect we owe to the emblem representing our country.


1. Do not permit disrespect to be shown to the flag of the United States.

2. Do not dip the flag of the United States to any person or anything. The regimental colors, State flag, organization or institutional flag will render this honor.

3. Do not display the flag of the United States with the union down except as a signal of distress.

4. Do not place any other flag or pennant above or to the right of the flag of the United States.

5. Do not let the flag of the United States touch the ground or trail in the water.

6. Do not place any object or emblem of any kind on or above the flag of the United States.

7. Do not use the flag as drapery in any form whatever. Use bunting of blue, white, and red.

8. Do not fasten the flag in such manner as will permit it to be easily torn.

9. Do not drape the flag over the hood, top, sides, or back of a vehicle, or of a railroad train or boat. When the flag is displayed on a motor car, the staff should be affixed firmly to the chassis or clamped to the radiator cap.

10. Do not display the flag on a float in a parade except from a staff.

11. Do not use the flag as a covering for a ceiling.

12. Do not use the flag as a portion of a costume or of an athletic uniform. Do not embroider it upon cushions or handkerchiefs or print it on paper napkins or boxes.

13. Do not put lettering of any kind upon the flag.

14. Do not use the flag in any form of advertising nor fasten an advertising sign to a pole from which the flag of the United States is flying.

15. Do not display, use, or store the flag in such a manner as will permit it to be easily soiled or damaged.

Proper Use of Bunting

[Bunting: patriotic and festive decorations made from such cloth, or from paper, usually in the form of draperies, wide streamers, etc., in the colors of the national flag.]

Bunting of the national colors should be used for covering a speaker’s desk, draping over the front of a platform, and for decoration in general. Bunting should be arranged with the blue above, the white in the middle, and the red below.

Salute to the Flag

During the ceremony of hoisting or lowering the flag or when the flag is passing in a parade or in a review, all persons present should face the flag, stand at attention, and salute. Those present in uniform should render the right-hand salute. When not in uniform, men should remove the headdress with the right hand and hold it at the left shoulder.. Women should salute by placing the right hand over the heart. The salute to the flag in the moving column is rendered at the moment the Hug parses.

When the national anthem is played those present in uniform should salute at the first note of the anthem, retaining this position until the last note of the anthem. When not in uniform, men should remove the headdress and hold it as in the salute to the flag. Women should render the salute as to the flag. When there is no flag displayed, all should face toward the music.


Jean Lafitte: From Pirate to Patriot

Jean Lafitte

Jean Lafitte

Lafitte, The Baratarian Chief; A Tale Founded On Fact: From Pirate to Patriot.

“P. The man is a fool who surrenders himself to such unmanly, such womanish weakness.

L. Hast thou ever loved?

“P. Never.

“L. Then confine thy reproaches to subjects thou canst understand. The oak which has bowed to the blast may again become erect and majestic; the country which the earthquake has desolated may again become verdant and beautiful; but the heart whose finest feelings have been chilled by the icy hand of misfortune; whose fondest hopes have been destroyed in their bud, never recovers from the shock, but remains leafless, ruinous, desolate, and forsaken.” Old Play.

“May I never see the white cliffs of old England again, if I am not heartily glad to escape from this horrid hole!” cried, or rather muttered a weather-beaten, rough, hardy-looking seaman, as we seated ourselves Tinder the awning of the steamboat which was to convey us, with several other passengers, from the city of New Orleans, to vessels which were waiting for us at the English Turn. “I am an Englishman,” continued he, “and I care not who knows it—there is my home, and if I set my foot on that dear shore again, let me go to Davy’s locker if they again catch me in this land of Frenchmen and Mulattoes, Spaniards and Indians, Creoles and Negroes, and the cursed, quarrelsome Americans, too: —if you look squint at them, you are on your beam-ends in a moment I tread on their toes, bang’s the word, and daylight shines through you.”

As the honest tar appeared to be in a talkative mood, I determined to indulge his loquacity, and replied, “My good fellow, you appear to be quite out of humor to-day. I should conclude that you must have been shamefully misused. I have lived several months among these same Americans, and have no cause to complain of any ill-treatment whatever.”

“Several months!” echoed he, with an air of astonishment; “why, I had not been in port two days before I happened to tell a Kentuckian he lied, (and, by my soul, he did,) when he gave me a broadside which stove in my lights, and before I could muster to quarters, I was fairly carried by boarding—d**n him! but it was the first time that Anson Humber was obliged to strike his colors to a land-lubber.”

“I admit,” I replied, “that these Kentuckians are not the most polite people in the world; but if you keep on the right side of them, you will find friends till the last moment.”

“May I dangle from the yard-arm this minute,” cried the irritated sailor, “if I was ever able to tell the larboard from the starboard side of these fresh-water lobsters; wear your ship which way you will, they always strike across the beam, and are ready for raking or boarding— and by Nelson’s right arm, (peace to his memory!) I had rather ship the heaviest wave of the Atlantic than have one of these madmen to deal with.”

“Perhaps,” I replied, “you ought to blame yourself for some of the treatment of which you complain; you know, when John Bull gets plenty of corn in his garret, he is apt to be proud and dictatorial.”

“Likely enough,” said he; “you know, too, when a sailor gets his ‘three sheets spread to the wind, he fears neither God, man, nor the devil; all seas are clear, and he cares for neither shores, rocks, nor quicksands. But what’s the reason you have escaped so well? It must be because you are a gentleman: no, that can’t be the cause either, for here gentlemen shoot one another for sport.”

“But that,” I answered, “is a kind of sport which I should not like; and the simple reason why I think there is no difficulty, is, because I have attended to my own affairs.”

“Perhaps so,” he replied. “Yesterday morning, I got up early, and took a tour up the river on—what d’ye call it—the lever, lev-lev—hang it, let the name go.”

“The Levee, my good friend, you mean.”

“Yes, that’s it—on the Levee—where I saw a boat’s crew anchor a wagon and approach the spot where, like a rat in the hold, I was snugly hid behind some orange-trees. A couple of them took their stations in line, and I perceived, that as soon as they could bring their guns to bear, there was likely to be some bloodshed. Good, thought I; if you will kill each other, the more the merrier. An attempt was made to induce one of them to strike his colours, but they were nailed to the mast, and could not be taken down. The battle commenced and the first broadside told well. One was damaged in the rigging, but the other went down to the bottom completely blood-logged.”

“That was a curious affair, indeed; what became of the rest of the party?” I asked.

Why, they made all sail for the city, and as soon as they were out of sight, I steered for the same port, and soon found myself safely lodged in my old berth,” was his answer.

During the latter part of the conversation, a person, whom I had not noticed before, attracted my attention; his countenance, when I was able to catch a glimpse of it, under the large hat, with its nodding plume, which covered his head and was pulled down with an evident intention of concealment, betrayed considerable agitation; and while Anson was describing, with the carelessness and volubility of an old seaman, the fatal duel he had that morning witnessed, he arose from his seat, and with hasty and irregular movements paced the deck, but maintained a steady and total silence. His form was not of that robust and masculine kind which denotes strength purely mechanical, but there was a firmness in his step, a lightness in his movements, and an ease and gracefulness in his carriage, which indicated strength, quickness, and decision. He was well dressed, and at his side hung a sabre of the most formidable dimensions; a pair of pistols showed themselves from his holt; but as at this place all went armed, his appearance in this respect would not excite remark. His complexion had evidently once been fair, but a southern sun had browned his cheeks till few lines were left of that roseate hue, which, from the traces visible where his curling hair had shaded his temples, it was evident had once predominated. His features were femininely regular; his forehead high and proudly arched, while beneath his eyebrows, black and waving, shone a pair of eyes, which, when agitated, appeared to flash lightning, and at a glance penetrate the secret recesses of the heart. I confess I trembled involuntarily when my eyes met his, as he started to his feet, when Anson described his position during the duel. Brown as was his complexion, an instant flush passed over his countenance, and he placed his hand on the hilt of the sabre in a manner which showed he was accustomed to its use. It was, however, as instantly dropped to his side, and he resumed his former position with as much indifference as though nothing had occurred. A pair of whiskers of the most enormous size shaded his cheeks, and really met under his chin, proving the service to which he was attached, and completed the outline of the person who had so strongly engaged my attention, and who exhibited an appearance of coolness, daring, and intrepidity, which I had never before witnessed.

While I was surveying this person, Anson, undisturbed by my inattention, had continued his chatter, and it was not until I heard the word pirate, that I was roused from my revery.

“What is that about pirates!” I inquired; “was any thing said about them in the city?”

“Nothing,” said Anson, “but that there are some of the sharks off the river; and I heard one fellow swear roundly that he yesterday saw the piratical chief.”

“Why,” I replied, “did he not lodge an information against him, and let him receive the punishment due such a crime?”

Ah! that’s the very question I asked the fellow myself,” answered Anson, “and offered, besides, to assist in securing him, and taking him to the yard-arm, if necessary; but the fellow said it would be as much as his head was worth to think of any such thing; besides, he might want a favour himself in that line some day or other, and it was best not to meddle with other folks’ matters.”

“Well, Anson,” said I, “if they meddle with us, we must pay them in their own coin; and it will not be your fault, I presume, if they do not receive change to the full amount.”

“No, it will not—but they said,” continued Anson, “that the chief of the gang killed a man yesterday, because he recog-recog-recognised, I think they called it—and charged the fellow with being the robber of his vessel and cargo. I do not mean he stabbed him in the dark, as a Spaniard or Frenchman would, but he told him it was false: so they shot at one another like gentlemen.”

The stranger again rose from his seat and walked across the deck, but remained silent. By this time, Anson had talked himself out of breath, and concluded to take a bit of a nap on the deck; and as the stranger appeared to shun observation, and showed no disposition to converse, we dropped down the river in silence.

Evening found us on board the fine stout brig Cleopatra, laden with indigo, cochineal, and a quantity of specie. She was a British vessel, just arrived from Santa Cruz, and employed as a cartel in exchanging some prisoners, by direction of the commanding officer on the West India station. From New Orleans she was to proceed to New York, and I gladly availed myself of the opportunity offered to visit my native region, from which business and war had so long kept me. The stranger, on parting with us as we went on board the Cleopatra, bade us adieu with the manners of a gentleman, and, while Anson Humber was cursing some of the rigging which had been procured at New Orleans, as a mere Yankee contrivance, he, in a half-suppressed tone of voice, whispered, “There are rovers on the deep; should difficulty overtake you, remember Lafitte.” As he pronounced these words, he leaped into a small boat which floated alongside the steamboat in which we had descended the river, and, amidst the darkness of the evening, was soon out of sight among the craft which almost covered the surface of the waters.

“By the powers !” exclaimed Anson, who had caught the tones of the stranger’s voice, low as they were uttered, “that is the very man who killed the other up the Levee yesterday morning: ah! I smell another rat, too; he is the pirate himself,” continued Anson, with a kind of shudder—” my head does not feel half so safely seated on my shoulders as it did ten minutes ago; but can we not overhaul him? I should like to lay alongside of him, well armed as he is.”

“If you should, Anson, brave as you are, it is my opinion you would find yourself in a more disagreeable predicament than when you were boarded by a Kentuckian. If, however, we meet with a pirate, we need fear nothing. A dozen such fellows as you are might enable us to bid defiance to old Neptune himself.” “You are right, sir,” replied the sailor, “while that flutters,” (pointing to the colours which streamed gayly in the wind,) “I will insure the safety of the Cleopatra. But I am so sleepy, that if the vessel was striking on breakers, or pirates were boarding, I could hardly keep awake.” So saying, he stowed himself in his hammock, and in a few minutes nothing was to be heard but the waves of the Mississippi as they dashed against the vessel, the measured pace of the sentinel as he traversed the quarter-deck, or the heavy breathing of those of the crew, who, after a hard day’s labour, were refreshing themselves in the sweet embraces of sleep.

I too threw myself on my bed, but not to sleep. A thousand circumstances united to interest my mind and keep me wakeful. I was about to return to the land of my fathers, the, home of my childhood. Home! that endearing word !—what tender recollections crowd upon die mind, when ten thousand charms of that delightful place present themselves in all their sweetness and freshness. Long as I had been separated from my native State—long as I had traversed the various regions of the globe—long as it had been since half the wide world had interposed between me and the place where I had first tasted the pleasures and pains of life, I had not forgotten a single scene around which memory lingered with such interest. The village spire, which threw its shadow over the green, where with the companions of my boyhood; we wrestled, jumped, laughed, ran, and sported, while the ball flew rapidly round the circle—the gloomy churchyard, which, when a truant boy, I had so often shudderingly passed, when the pale moon glimmered athwart the marbles which crowded the sacred enclosure, and, to my affrighted imagination, appeared to people the dreary place with the tenants of that world from which no traveller returns—the hills I had often climbed —the green valleys I had often crossed—the mountains among which I had so often roved in pursuit of such game as they afforded, all passed in review; and I even thought with rapture on the huge rock which was shaded with the branches of my favourite walnut-tree, and where, happy as the squirrel which barked over my head, I had spent many an hour, cracking the nuts which every wind made to rattle down around me.

The various countries and scenes through which I had passed since I first became a wanderer from the land of my childhood, now that my imagination pictured those wanderings as drawing to a close, rose in all their various shades before me, and the pains and pleasures of my peregrinations were again presented in bold relief by the powerful effect of memory. Over the civilized plains of Europe and the semi-barbarous regions of Asia I had roved. I had seen the aurora borealis dance over the regions of eternal frost—the sun in vain attempt to dissolve the chains which an Arctic winter had formed—and I had felt its fervid heat where equinoctial skies shed their debilitating and pernicious influence. I had traversed the plains of Orinoco, and the banks of the La Plata: I had climbed the Cordilleras, and, with the enthusiasm of youth, beheld the setting sun gild those bright isles of the Pacific, which are sprinkled in such profusion over the surface of its broad blue waters, and whose inhabitants are as guileless and unsuspecting as their skies are bright and cloudless. I had seen the St. Lawrence rolling its majestic stream, collected from a thousand lakes, to the ocean—and I was then floating on the bosom of the father of the rivers, which, rising among the frozen lakes and interminable forests of the north, discharges its turbid waters into the Mexican Gulf, amid the orange groves and sugar-plantations of the South; while, after years of absence had elapsed, I was about to visit the parental roof, with the intention of bringing my wanderings to a close, and spending the remainder of my days in quiet contentment and peaceful happiness. Nor was my interview with the stranger of such mysterious character and appearance forgotten. His apparent connection with the pirates, who, if report stated correctly, frequented the islands which lie off the Mississippi, and whose inhuman atrocities formed a common topic of conversation at New Orleans, I felt to be ominous of the result of our voyage; and although his words afforded a ray of hope to me, I wished I had not seen him.

Such were my feelings, as I in vain wooed the god of sleep for a temporary oblivion to my perturbed ideas; and it was not until the watch had been changed the last time that I fell asleep, from which I did not wake in the morning until the vessel was already several miles on her voyage. When I went upon deck, the vessel was floating along the current between the high woods which covered both banks of the river. Scarcely a breath of wind was to be felt—the sails hung idly against the mast, and we depended on the current alone to speed us to the ocean.

If ever there was a country over which the genius of desolation might be said to hold undisputed dominion, it is the region around the mouth of the Mississippi. Below Plaquemines it is one dreary and desolate marsh, covered with cane and reeds, and sinking gradually to the dead level of the Gulf. For miles before we reached the mouth of the river, the sea could be distinctly seen from the masthead, stretching away on each side of the point of land formed by the continual depositions of this mighty stream. Subject to overflow by the rise of the Mississippi or the inundations of the Gulf, and frequently submerged to the depth of six or eight feet by the autumnal tornadoes, no animals are to be seen; and the cormorant, as he wings his lonely way along these dreary shores, finds a precious resting-place on the banks of sand-shells which the continual breaking of the waves has raised around these pestilential marshes.

At last, the bar was passed, and we found ourselves on the broad bosom of the Gulf. The sailors, delighted with the prosperous commencement of the voyage, were all mirth and glee, and while the sails were filled with breezes which were hurrying us as we fondly imagined to New York, our port of destination, the can of grog circulated freely, and mirth and dance and song swept the hours rapidly away.

Our captain was an able officer, in whom we could repose the utmost confidence—the subalterns were experienced and attentive—the crew consisted of eleven hardy, rough sons of the ocean, making in all, including myself and two other passengers, about twenty souls on board. The vessel was a new stout ship, merchant rigged, but mounting six guns and well provided with arms and ammunition, and all the necessary implements of offensive and defensive war.—The day passed away, and it was not until the forenoon of the second day after leaving the river, that any thing occurred to vary the dull monotony of a sea-voyage. I was sitting in my cabin, arranging some packages of papers, &c, when I was roused by an unusual uproar on the deck, and the boatswain’s shrill whistle calling all hands to quarters. I speedily deposited in their trunks the papers I was reviewing, and hastened to the deck—before I reached which, however, I heard several guns fired.

The cause of alarm was a vessel of suspicious appearance, which had been bearing down for some time, apparently with the intention of crossing the Cleopatra’s course, and though the British colors were at the mast, (and they were within hail,) they neglected to answer the repeated call of Captain Bowden, who at last ordered a gun to be fired over them. To this no attention was paid—few men were to be seen on deck—and the vessel continued her course in a manner which indicated an intention to lay the vessel immediately on board our ship. At this moment, Captain Bowden hailed them and ordered them to keep off, or he would fire upon them; when the decks of the vessel were instantly crowded with armed men, the British colours were hauled down and the red flag displayed, and a heavy fire of musketry opened upon us from the pirate, for such it was evident she was. The guns of the Cleopatra could be brought to bear with admirable effect, and it was soon evident that if they could be prevented from boarding us, the conflict would not long remain doubtful.

“Three to one, my brave lads,” cried Captain Bowden, as through his glass he surveyed his assailants—” but were they five to one, we shall soon make them count one to two—sweep their deck, boys; we’ll teach the rascals to keep a respectful distance.” Finding his attempt to board unavailing, the pirate hauled out of reach of our small arms, which had done great execution among his crowded decks. The cessation of the contest was however but momentary—our assailants returned to the attack with fury, and, in spite of our exertions, succeeded in grappling our vessel. His decks exhibited a motley assemblage of ferocious-looking villains, black, white, and yellow, whose horrid imprecations and oaths were enough to appall the bravest heart, as, repulsed from our bulwarks in their attempts to board, it was only to renew the assault with double desperation and rage. Several of our bravest fellows had already fallen, when twenty or thirty of these tigers took advantage of a swell of the sea which brought the vessels in contact, and sprang on board the Cleopatra, sabre in hand. They were met by our crew with such vigour that scarcely had a minute elapsed before their numbers were reduced one half, and the remainder were wavering, when a fellow threw himself on board from the piratical vessel, put himself at the head of the assailants, and with shouts and imprecations urged his followers forward. “Hell and furies!” he cried, “shall these few men escape in this way? Send them to perdition in a moment. Remember, all or nothing.” Captain Bowden threw himself before the pirate, and a combat of the most obstinate kind ensued—terrific and desperate. A pause of some moments ensued among the other combatants, who suspended the work of death to witness a contest on which so much was depending. At last, British valour rose triumphant, and the pirate dropped mortally wounded upon the deck.

“Captain Bowden for ever!” shouted Anson, as the blood spouted from the mouth of the marauder mixed with curses and execrations, while he flew to finish the work of death upon the remainder. Anson’s bravery carried him so far that he was surrounded, and a blow was aimed at him which would have speedily sent him to Davy’s Locker, had not a blow from my sabre dropped the fellow’s head from his body, and his spouting trunk fell lifeless to the deck.

“That fellow is anchored where he won’t slip his cable these hundred years,” cried Anson, as he gave the head a kick, which sent it across the deck; “but never let me taste the roast-beef of old England again, if I don’t believe that you have wielded the sabre before now.”

“Very likely, my good fellow,” I replied; “but before we think o( roast-beef, we must rid the vessel of these villains.”

“Have at the rascals, then I” shouted Anson, as he thrust his sword to the hilt through the body of a huge negro, and before he had time to drop, seized him and threw him into the ocean. “The sharks may have him and welcome, if they can stomach the black dog; I won’t have such a stinking fellow on the Cleopatra’s deck,” said Anson, as the wave splashed against the vessel from the negro’s fall. Anson, however, had no time for soliloquizing, for he was confronted by a tall, weazel-faced Frenchman, whose rapid thrusts and skilful manoeuvres it required all his attention to meet. At last, thin as was the mark, Anson’s sabre hit, and the Frenchman fell.

“Cursed poor!” said Anson, as he placed his foot on the fallen foe and extricated his weapon; “thin as your frog-soup—a fellow might read the Assembly’s Catechism through you.”

At this instant, another vessel, which was within a few miles at the commencement of the struggle, and which, as the firing commenced, had approached us rapidly, now neared us sufficiently to enable us to discover, that, like the vessel with which we were already engaged, she was a pirate.’ When she was within fifty yards of us, her crew gave a shout, which was instantly echoed from our first assailants, and our decks were again crowded with a motley crew of desperadoes. “There is but one alternative,” said Captain Bowden to me, “we must conquer or die. Our situation is indeed desperate, but it cannot be so bad as to be hopeless.” So saying, he put himself at the head of the few remaining, and few indeed they were, for of the brave men who were so cheerful and happy in the morning, but six or eight were left—the rest lay mixed with the foes who were piled in slaughtered heaps around. Our charge was murderous, and the screams of the wounded and groans of the dying were heard above the dash of the waters, the din of the conflict, or the shouts of the combatants. The tide was quickly turned, and the deck was on the point of being speedily cleared, when a figure of the most athletic appearance, his face covered with blood from a sabre-wound in his head, around which a handkerchief was tightly bound, and his features distorted with rage, leaped from the deck of our first opponent, and, with sabre in hand, rushed upon Captain Bowden.

“Curse on your cowardice!” cried he to his followers, “shall two men drive you to the devil? If you want the whole prize, fight; if not, wait till you are obliged to share it with Lafitte.” The conflict was terrible. As Anson endeavoured to parry a blow aimed at Captain Bowden, the buccaneer, by a sudden wheel of his sabre, severed his shoulders from his body—I was covered with his blood—and giving a single groan, he fell lifeless art my feet.

“Poor fellow, thou shalt not die unrevenged,” I cried, and closed with his murderer.

By a violent effort, and before he could save himself from my impetuous attack, I had dashed him to the deck, and was on the point of transfixing him with my sabre, when my feet, which were wet with blood, slipped, and I fell upon my antagonist. He was too much injured by the fall to be able to avail himself of the advantage my accident had given him; but. I was instantly seized by a half-dozen of the pirates, and should have been speedily sacrificed, had not Captain Bowden thrown himself among them, and with his death-dealing sabre freed me from their grasp. I was hardly on my feet before the cry, “They are boarding us on the starboard quarter!” was heard; and I perceived a fresh band of murderers were already on board.

“If we must die, let us sell our lives at as dear a rate as possible,” said I to Captain Bowden; and we rushed upon the gang who were pouring upon the starboard quarter of the Cleopatra. Our swords soon thinned their numbers, but we were weary with slaughter, and there appeared no end to our toils. Four only of our crew were left, and we felt that we must soon sink under the overwhelming force which was pouring upon us from all sides. At that instant, a volley of musketry killed every man of our crew, who had hitherto escaped to assist us in stemming the torrent, and Captain Bowden and myself were surrounded by wretches, whose yells, oaths, and imprecations made them more resemble demons than human beings. To prevent being placed in a situation where we could not keep our enemies at bay, we retreated, or were rather carried by the crowd of assailants, to the corner of the vessel, where a pile of slain rose around us, and the deck was flooded with gore.

“Fools, to throw away your lives in this manner,” shouted a stentorian voice, from a person who was seen struggling through the crowd of assailants; “give them the cold lead!And this order was obeyed by a volley of balls, which brought Captain Bowden to the deck, while the life-blood flowed in torrents from his numerous wounds. “Oh, my dear wife and children! Great God, protect them!” was all he could utter before he was a lifeless corpse. The man who had given the order, and who, from his commanding manner, appeared to be the chief of pirates, had cleared his way through the assailants, and, with his drawn sabre, now confronted me. I rejoiced to see him, for his strength and the manner in which he wielded his instrument of death, convinced me that, if he conquered, my death could not be lingering—and if he fell, I should have the satisfaction of freeing the world of a monster.

The combat was obstinate: I fought with the hopelessness of desperation, and pressed my assailant so closely, that he found himself unable to resist the assault, when, by an unlucky blow, my sabre was snapped in a dozen pieces, and I stood before him unarmed and defenceless. Baring my bosom, I inwardly commended myself to my Maker, and told him to strike; but, to my surprise, he dropped the point of his weapon, and looking me earnestly in the face, as he wiped the blood from his brow, exclaimed—”Not when unarmed; brave men honour the brave—you are safe—remember Lafitte!” and I instantly recognised him as the person who had so strongly attracted my attention while on our voyage from New Orleans to the English Turn.

“Who is this, that preaches safety?” exclaimed a voice half choaked with rage, and in tones that made me shudder; “may damnation seize me, if he shall not atone with his blood for the murder of my brother!’ So saying, he fired a pistol, which would have shattered my brains, had not Lafitte, by an instantaneous and dexterous movement of his sabre, thrown his pistol into the air when the assassin was in the act of firing, by which means I was preserved, although I was so near that my face was severely burnt by the discharge.

“Were it not, Laborde,” said Lafitte, “that I apprehend the injury on your head has made you raving, this act of rebellion to my authority would be your last. But be careful how you tempt my forbearance too far.”

“Cowardly miscreant!” cried Laborde, “you think to rob me of my victim—but should hell, with all its legions arrayed against me, appear, I would be revenged. This vessel is my prize! this sabre shall keep possession, and this sabre shall revenge my brother.”

“Touch but a hair of this man’s head to injure him,” answered Lafitte, in a voice which showed he was accustomed to command, “and your life shall answer for that crime.”

“I care not for your threats—I bid defiance to your power; this fellow dies—nor shall heaven or hell prevent,” cried Laborde, as he flew at me with his sabre, but found his progress arrested by the herculean strength of Lafitte. “Here,” said the latter, calling some of his crew,'” take this fellow, and secure him in his vessel till he becomes more rational, and his rage has time to cool, or, by the powers above, he dies! —my authority shall not be trifled with.” He was seized, and by main strength dragged towards his ship, struggling and roaring like a mad bull, when, by a sudden exertion, he freed his arms, plunged a dagger to the heart of one of those who were endeavouring to secure him, and before Lafitte, who was giving some orders about clearing the vessels, was aware of his approach, he received a blow upon his head, which dropped him, stunned and senseless, to the deck. Lafitte’s sabre flew from his hand and fell at my feet, and ere Laborde could reach me, I was ready to receive him, as he rushed upon his devoted prey with the fury of a tiger.

“Now, cursed wretch, thou shalt die!—Lafitte himself cannot save thee!cried Laborde, his eyes flashing fire, his features distorted with rage, and yelling like a maniac. His ungovernable rage threw him off his guard, and as he made a desperate plunge at my breast, I parried the blow; his heart received the point of my weapon, and he fell lifeless upon the blood-covered deck. What would have been my fate from the rest of these wretches, had not Lafitte at that moment recovered his feet and stilled the commotion which was rising, is unknown. “Brave fellows,” said he, “in Laborde you behold the fate of him who dares to disobey my orders—shun his example. Let these vessels be taken to Barataria, and in them we shall find treasure equal to our utmost expectations, and which shall be equally shared by all.” A shout of approbation, and “Long live Lafitte!” rent the air. The decks were cleared of the dead, who, as well as the badly wounded, were committed to the waves; and when the setting sun threw his last rays on the topmasts of the Cleopatra, we were in full sail for the Island of Barataria, which I found was the rendezvous of the pirates who frequented the Gulf, and of whom Lafitte was the acknowledged chief.

The Island of Barataria, at which we arrived on the day after the capture of the Cleopatra, is one of those low, sunken islands, or rather clusters of sand-bars, which are so numerous in the Gulf of Mexico, hardly elevated above the reach of the equinoctial tornado, and, owing to the drought and heat, scarcely habitable for a considerable part of the year. Here, after considerable difficulty from intricacies of navigation, or unskillfulness of the pilot, we found ourselves at anchor, and Lafitte, accompanied by myself, immediately went on shore. A few groves of orange-trees, scattered peach-trees, and luxuriant vines were to be seen, which contrasted strongly with the few miserable huts which formed the establishment of these outlaws of civilization—this congregated mass of refuse from every nation under heaven. Plunder, assassination, and murder were here legalized. Power formed the only law; and every species of iniquity was here carried to an extent, of which no person who had not witnessed a similar den of pollution could form the most distant idea. In this place, which, as one of the pirates himself observed, “was a hell on earth, and well stocked with devils of all ranks and degrees,” were to be seen a few women, who vied with the men in trampling on all decency and decorum, and whose language and manners were a compound of all the vileness and profanity which could be collected from the wretches with whom they associated. If my first impressions were unfavourable, subsequent observations did nothing to remove them. The crews of the piratical vessels were landed—and when a division had been made of the plunder, commenced a scene of intoxication, gambling, quarrelling, and murder, which still chills my blood to remember, and which the sabre of Lafitte was required sometimes to subdue. He alone seemed to possess any command over his passions, and his voice was never heard among them in vain; while he shared the danger equally with the meanest sailor, whatever plunder was acquired was divided among them with the most scrupulous exactness. His influence over them was great, and their confidence in him unbounded.

Nearly three weeks passed away, and although I suffered at no time any contumely or insults from the pirates, and Lafitte always treated me in the most respectful manner, frequently requesting me to give myself no uneasiness, as, for whatever loss in property I might have sustained on board the Cleopatra, I should receive ample compensation, still I felt my situation irksome in the extreme. My anxiety was observed by Lafitte.

“I see,” said he, “you are anxious to leave us. I do not wish to detain you, for such company cannot be agreeable. Be patient a few days longer, and I will enable you to depart in safety. Would to heaven I could accompany you!” “And why can you not?” I asked; “what should make you hesitate? Such a life as this—one unvarying round of danger, fatigue, and crime, surely can possess no charms to a man whose very actions prove that he was born to a nobler, a better fate.”

“How,” said he, “can the notorious Lafitte, the chief of pirates, the commander of outlaws, the companion of murderers, the man whose very name carries terror from Carthagena to Havana, mix in the society of civilized men? Would the laws be silent? Would not the sword of justice leap from its scabbard at the very mention of my name? And these men, these pestilential humours in the body politic, is there not quite as much hope that justice will be done them, when collected in one mass, as when scattered abroad,to pollute the fountains of society, and spread their poisonous influence through the streams of social compact and order? As to this mode of living, it is the danger alone that furnishes to me its only charms; it is not for the sake of wealth—it is not for the bad eminence of being a sovereign among pirates; but it is because, when once unfortunate circumstances have made a man an outlaw, it is difficult to obtain admission into the pale of society; it is because I would willingly set my life on the hazard of a shot to free myself from misfortunes, which have followed close upon my heels ever since I had an existence, that you find me a pirate, a native of Barataria.”

“If I understand you, then,” I replied, “you would not hesitate to leave this place and these wretches to their fate, if the past could be buried in oblivion—if your offences against the laws could be cancelled and your safety insured.”

“Were there none concerned but myself,” he answered, “you would be perfectly correct; but these men I must not forsake—their safety must depend on my own. As to the rest, I can easily hear your implied assertion of guilt without being offended; it is scarcely possible for you to feel otherwise; but it is inevitable necessity alone that compels me to endure my present situation; most gladly would I quit it, but the hope is vain, and I must content myself to use my influence in restraining the atrocities of these men in the most effectual manner possible.” “Perhaps not,” I replied. “I know the chances are indeed small, but I think there is one in which exists a possibility of effecting your wishes; and I should be happy could I be the instrument of accomplishing them.” “Name but the means by which it can be effected,” answered he with earnestness, “and I shall feel myself for ever indebted to you.”

“I shall deal frankly with you,” I replied: “I know not on which side your feelings are enlisted in the contest which is at present raging between the United States and Great Britain; but I shall put the question plainly. Would you yourself embark in the cause of America, and use your exertions to induce your men to do so, if an act of pardon and oblivion could be obtained under the Presidential seal? ”

“Most willingly,” he answered; “let but the name of pirate be buried, and I pledge myself that these men will be found among the bravest defenders of the republic.”

“Then my best exertions shall be used in your behalf—your services will soon be wanted where they will produce the most effect. Great Britain is fitting out a powerful fleet in the West Indies, which is probably destined against New Orleans, and, from your thorough acquaintance with the whole coast of the Gulf, and the necessity of collecting a formidable force at that point, the Government of the United States would no doubt listen favourably to whatever overtures might be made in your behalf. There is one favour, however, which I shall insist upon from you, and which you will not refuse—a relation of the circumstances which induced you to become what you now appear to have been from youth, a pirate by profession.”

“By profession,” said he, smiling. “l am a pirate; but the time was when I was not. If it will be gratifying to you to have a knowledge of some of the events of my past life, I shall cheerfully comply with your request, although the recital will call to my mind scenes which have wrung my heart to its centre.

The county of Westchester, in the State of New York, was my birthplace : my name is Mortimer Wilson. In what manner I acquired my present name, you will learn from my story: it is sufficient that to the pirate I am known only as Lafitte. If to be born of honest, industrious, and respectable parents, be an advantage, that advantage I enjoyed;—if to be born of parents destitute of wealth, and compelled by misfortune to use every exertion to support a helpless and dependent family, be a disadvantage, I suffered. One of my earliest impressions, and one that I distinctly remember, was a determination to be rich; for my parents felt the evils of poverty, and riches, I imagined, furnished the means of gratifying our wishes, of whatever kind they might be. I had an uncle, living in the city of New York, a merchant of respectability, who, when on a visit to my father’s, noticed with pleasure my playfulness, repartee, and independence, and obtained my parents’ consent that I should live with him in the city, with the intention of introducing me into the mercantile business, should my progress answer the expectations he had formed of me. I was then ten years old, and my situation with my uncle was as agreeable as I could wish. His family was small, an only son and daughter, affectionate and lovely; they treated me as a brother, while, being a few years younger than myself, I obtained a complete ascendency over them; and I can safely say I knew no greater delight than witnessing and partaking in their happiness. I gave my uncle, by my proficiency in my studies, by my undeviating attention to business, and the love felt for himself and family, the highest satisfaction; nor do I remember his giving me a single unpleasant word during the whole time I resided under his benevolent and hospitable roof.

I had now reached my nineteenth year—and my uncle made me proposals of establishing me in the business on my own account, if I chose; generously offering to furnish me with whatever capital it might require—but observing, at the same time, that if it was agreeable to me, he should prefer having me continue the head of the establishment with which I was well acquainted, as it was his intention to retire from business, in favour of his son, and that nothing could please him better than to see us together advancing the interest he had laboured to acquire and promote. I assured the good man that nothing could be more gratifying to me than such an arrangement, and that his pleasure should always be a law to me; while I flattered myself that I had secured the great object of my wishes, wealth and happiness.

At, this juncture, my uncle received intelligence respecting a mercantile house in Charleston, with whom he was engaged in extensive transactions, that made it necessary for me to repair immediately to that place—and no time was lost in making preparations for my departure. I sailed for Charleston—reached that city in safety—accomplished the object of my mission—transmitted an account of my success to my uncle through the post-office—and while waiting with impatience the sailing of the vessel which was to convey me to the place where my fondest wishes were concentrated, I was attacked by the fever of the country, which raged with such violence that I was entirely deprived of my reason, and, for weeks, the friends with whom I resided despaired of my life. A strong constitution, however, enabled me to survive the attack, and, after some time, gleams of returning recollection and reason began to shoot across my bewildered imagination and memory. The first that I can distinctly recollect was a strong impression of a beautiful form which appeared to be hovering around me and administering to my wants. My imagination had converted her into an angelic being; and I fancied that I had already passed the tremendous ordeal which awaits the departed spirit—had been admitted into the mansions of the blessed, and that the form which I had beheld was my guardian angel, sent to console me for the troubles of the world I imagined I had left. Perhaps the sweet music of the piano, which, from the adjoining room, distinctly reached me, as fairy fingers pressed the keys, contributed to the delusion; for that I conceived to be the music of heaven’s minstrelsy. Returning reason, however, soon dispelled all these illusory dreams; and instead of a disimbodied spirit, I found myself a tenant of earth, and subject to the mutations of time.

I said all those illusory dreams were dispelled; but it was not so—there was one from which I could not, from which I did not wish to awake; with steps light and noiseless as those made by fairy feet— eyes brilliant and sparkling, as any that ever sparkled under the delightful skies of Italy—a form which, accustomed as I had been to the beauties of the North, far surpassed all that my imagination had ever conceived—this lovely creature watched over my bed, and though to me utterly unknown, manifested a sympathetic feeling for my welfare, a solicitude for my recovery, which endeared her to me, and caused my heart to flutter with an emotion it had never before felt.

Unable to lift my hand or utter a syllable without the greatest difficulty, I lay for hours viewing with rapture the angelic creature who hung over me, as she bathed my burning brow in the cooling fluid, or administered the reviving cordial; and when I had recovered strength enough to make the attempt of expressing my gratitude, she placed her white taper fingers on my lips, and with an accent which like an electric shock thrilled through every fibre of my own heart, required me to be silent.

“I am your physician,” added she, smiling, “and if you wish restoration to health, (heaven knows how much pleasure such an event would give!) you must follow my directions implicitly.” I moved my head in token of submission to her will, pressed her hand to my lips, and the blushing girl hastily quitted the chamber. The mystery which I had been unable to solve when reflecting on my fair attendant, as before my sickness I had never seen her, was unravelled when I had so far recovered as to be able to converse. I found myself under the hospitable roof of Colonel Mornton, a brother to the merchant on whose account I had visited Charleston, and to whose house I had been removed on account of its more retired character, and where I should be less liable to be disturbed by the noise and bustle of the city.

My fair attendant was an only daughter o/ the colonel’s, who had arrived in the city from a visit to Columbia during the first week of my sickness, and by devoting herself to my attendance, had voluntarily deprived herself of the charms which that season of the year presents to youth, when all its mirth and gayety, and crowded theatres, brilliant assemblies, splendid parties, and the fascinating ball-room, more than compensate for the deserted and dreary appearance of the city during the season when the malaria compels the inhabitants to seek refuge in the elevated parts of the country, or by a journey to the north, combine objects of pleasure and health, which are frequently so widely separated.

My health returned slowly—but never were days more delightfully passed than those which glided away in the company of Mary Mornton, the lovely person who had obtained so complete an ascendency over my whole soul, that the thought that returning health, much as I desired it, would hasten my separation from one whose presence I felt to be absolutely necessary to my happiness, threw a chill over my feelings; and I dismissed the unwelcome intruder as an enemy to my peace and happiness.

I had now so far recovered as to be able to receive company, and even to attend a few select parties, where I was introduced to a young lady, an intimate acquaintance of the lovely Mary’s, of the greatest accomplishments, and, as she fondly imagined, unrivalled beauty. On the most friendly terms with Mary, Miss Hanson was always received with pleasure at Colonel Mornton’s, and now that the rounds of pleasure had once been enjoyed, she became a daily visitor. Intent only on the transcendent excellence of the lovely Mary, I had no time to make comparisons between them; and had I undertaken it, they would undoubtedly have been partial. A brother of Miss Hanson’s, whose name was George, was frequently a visitor at my residence, sometimes in company with his sister, sometimes without; and although his cold, haughty, supercilious, and overbearing manner was far from agreeable, yet his rank, his station in society, and his prospects in life, contributed to give him an ascendency in all parties, which few felt inclined to dispute.

He had returned from Europe a short time previous to my arrival in Charleston, and the imposing superiority which a sea-voyage across the Atlantic enables a man to assume as a judge of manners and men, I concluded might not wholly have been laid aside. As it concerned myself personally, I cared but little about him; but there was one subject which gave me more uneasiness than any other, and that was the marked attention he paid to Mary. Though I closely observed her, I could see nothing in her conduct to justify any apprehensions—yet I confess i felt it would be morally impossible for her to reject the superior advantages which a union with this man presented above any I could offer.

“That is the most charming creature I ever saw,” said George to me, one evening, as we were together sitting on a sofa, while Mary and his sister were playfully discussing some question of fashion or taste, in another part of the room; “I have visited Paris and London, but, among all their fashionable circles and their beauties, I never saw a Mary Mornton. Who could have thought that the rosebud that I so heedlessly overlooked three years ago, when I left Charleston for Europe, would so soon have expanded into so beautiful a flower?”

“Perhaps no one,” I replied, with an air of indifference which ill accorded with my feelings. The compliment my heart told me was just, and I was inwardly pleased to hear it awarded, although I felt fearful of the result, should his preference be openly avowed. “Mary is indeed a fine girl—but I must be permitted to say the same of the greater part of the Charleston fair with whom I have had the happiness to become acquainted.”

“Ah, Mortimer,” said George, tapping me on the shoulder, “that maidenly blush of yours gives the lie to the pretended coldness of your words; but you had better be upon your guard, and not suffer her to run away with your heart—for it is well understood that Mary is to be mine.”

I started to my feet as he pronounced the last words, and was in the act of demanding an explanation, when I fortunately reflected that, by so doing, I must disclose what I most wished to conceal, and that I had no right whatever to make the demand; so I carelessly answered him, “that I did not consider my heart in so much danger as he supposed,” and that “Mary, if he obtained her, would doubtless make an agreeable companion.”

At this moment, Mary came laughing up to us, and taking my hand, “Mortimer,” said she, “our Miss Hanson insists on our passing the afternoon with her to-morrow, and I have promised you shall comply with her request. May I say you will do so?”

Certainly,” I answered; “l am too much indebted to you to make objections to what you propose.”

“Then I propose,” said Mary, “that you invite our friend George to forget Europe and become an American. He talks and acts as stately as if he thought of nothing less than Catholic Cathedrals, London Monuments, or Egyptian Pyramids. Now, George,” continued she, peeping archly in his face, “tell me seriously and soberly—did the belles of London or Paris eclipse the stars of our Western hemisphere?”

Upon my honour, Mary,” he replied, “the question has been fairly put, and shall be as plainly and promptly answered; it is, no! no!”

“Such, I knew, would be your answer,” replied the lovely girl. “I give you full credit for the sincerity of your reply.”

“My answer was given in sober earnest,” said George; ” and I again repeat, that the most fashionable circles of London or Paris cannot produce a parallel, in loveliness and beauty, to Mary”—

“Stop,” said she, interrupting him, “not another word of your European gallantry. Remember, Mary Mornton is a plain American girl, unaccustomed to compliments, and upon whom all such fine sayings are entirely thrown away.”

“You seem to speak, Mary,” he answered, “as if I had forgotten my country; I protest against such a supposition.”

“To-morrow we will see,” replied she, smiling, “whether I am correct.”

The carriage at this moment drove up to the door, and as I handed Miss Hanson into it, she pressed my hand and whispered, “You will not forget your promise—remember, my happiness depends on you!”

“Be assured I will not,” I hastily replied, as she drew her veil over her beautiful features—and the carriage drove off.

“Mary,” said I, after they departed, “you were too unmercifully severe with our friend George; it is well you are not a man, or you would be called out to answer for your plainness.”

“I know him well,” she answered; “at least as well as a person can know such a compound of hauteur and hypocrisy—and I neither fear nor love him. It is a disadvantage under which we girls labour, that we are obliged to listen to the impertinence of fools, and we are charged with doing so because it pleases us.”

She looked down and sighed, as she pronounced the last words; and I felt so confounded at the consequences I found myself involuntarily drawing from his assertion, ” She is to be mine,” and her implied admission, “I must endure him,” that I had no inclination to speak—and there was a silence of a minute or two.

“I see,” said Mary, “my company is tiresome after that which we have enjoyed this afternoon, and, with your leave, I will bid you good evening.”

You must not!” I replied, eagerly, taking her by the hand and reseating her beside me on the sofa; “forgive my rudeness; attribute it to ill-health; to ill-breeding; to want of confidence; to any thing rather than the cause you have named; rather than indifference to your company.”

“Well,” she replied, “I forget it all; but you must remember that as I am still your physician, you have no right to indulge in reflections which would injure your health by being pursued, and of which I am ignorant. I see,” continued she, smiling archly in my face, “you are afflicted with that awful disorder, jealousy! you are afraid of George— and well you may be, for he is a dangerous fellow.”

“I am not without apprehension on his account,” I answered. “You admit that you do not love him, and yet you are to be his.”

“To be his! Mary Mornton to be his!” interrupted the lovely girl, rising from the sofa, her countenance flushed with animation: “Who told you so! George has not dared to intimate any thing of the kind— yet why should he not! He has no idea that any person could differ with him on this subject; but he is mistaken : never, never will Mary Mornton consent to receive that man for a husband: death would be a preferable bridegroom!

But who will blame George for endeavouring to possess such excellence?” I replied. “For desiring the happiness of calling such a treasure his own! Yes, Mary, you will believe me when I tell you, that though I would rather die a thousand deaths than witness such an event, yet his feelings are so far in unison with my own, that I feel more disposed to pity than to blame him.”

“No more, Mortimer, no more; so far I will believe that you are in earnest, that you do not intend what you have said to be merely complimentary; yet, let me entreat you to be cautious: should George become apprehensive on my account, his suspicions might fall on you, and remember the consequences would be fatal.”

“Only say, Mary, that you would feel an interest in my happiness, and forgive me for doubting it, after the proofs I have already received; only say that the most ardent attachment of a person as unworthy as I am would not be viewed with indifference by you, and I could venture the displeasure of a world.”

“You are becoming too serious for a sick man,” said Mary, smiling. “But if it would be any pleasure to know that 1 feel interested in your happiness, or willing to contribute to it, (since I have never been in the habit of dissembling my sentiments,) I shall tell you frankly, that if the sincerest wishes for your welfare will be the means of averting evil, you will long be happy.”

I was in the act of attempting to express the emotions of my throbbing heart, when Mary again placed her finger on her lips, and, blushing in all the loveliness of innocence, half returned my embrace as I clasped her to my bosom.

The next day came, and, accompanied by the lovely Mary, we repaired to the mansion of General Garrett, with whom George and Miss Hanson resided. We were received with all that attention, that ease and courtly politeness, which distinguish the well-bred in all countries Miss Hanson received the compliments that were paid her without embarrassment, and George almost forgot the air of a man who had seen “vastly fine things in his day.” He soon seated himself by me. “Mortimer,” said he, “I vow I would be sick half a year myself, if by that means I could secure the company of Mary, as you have done.”

“There is little pleasure in sickness,” I replied, “yet I acknowledge it might be something of a temptation to suffer, if we could be certain of having the hours cheered by the attendance of such girls as Miss Hanson and Mary.”

“But every one,” he continued, “would not be noticed as you have been; it is natural, I believe, for the female sex to bestow their sympathy and their love on strangers, with whom they are unacquainted, and of whose character they can know nothing.”

There was an ill-natured emphasis given to this last sentence, which I suspect slightly crimsoned my countenance; but instantly regaining my composure, without appearing to notice the manner in which the words were spoken, I replied, “I believed he must be mistaken, for, although I was a stranger, and felt most sensibly the favours which had been conferred upon me by the polite attentions of the Charleston fair, yet, I never could believe that a man who conducted himself as became a gentleman, would suffer, in their estimation, by time or acquaintance.”

“Perhaps not,” answered he, coldly, “but”—

“Gentlemen,” said Mary, interrupting him, “I take the liberty of protesting in Miss Hanson’s name and my own, against your having all the conversation to yourselves; we must be permitted to assist you.” And her eyes met mine with an expression which said, “Remember— beware!

Certainly,” said I, and she took her seat between us on the sofa, while Miss Hanson placed herself beside me, and, with her usual gayety and volubility, commenced a conversation. But a few minutes, however, elapsed, before a servant entered with a message, requesting Mary to return immediately, as her mother had been taken seriously ill since we had left home. The carriage was immediately ordered, and Mary took advantage of the momentary absence of Mr. Hanson to request me to spend the afternoon where I then was.

“I shall obey you, though unwillingly,” I replied.

“I know it, I feel it,” answered she, smiling; “still you must obey. Remember, I am to be your guardian angel. Come, George, (who at that moment entered the room,) you shall be my beau; Mortimer I shall leave to make your sister amends for my absence.”

George bowed apart, and, with little abatement of his customary hauteur, handed Mary into the carriage, who kissed her hand to me as the carriage drove off; and I found myself alone with the beautiful and accomplished Miss Hanson.

“Ah, Mortimer,” said she, as we seated ourselves on the sofa, “how happy am I to have this opportunity of convincing you how much I am interested in your welfare; any thing that my fortune can command, or my influence accomplish, is at your disposal.”

“I fully estimate the value and kindness of your offer,” I replied; “and should circumstances make it necessary, shall not hesitate to avail myself of its advantages. Now, however, I must think of nothing but my return to my friends at the North, from whom I have been so long absent.”

“Then,” said she, “you intend to leave us; but, when among your friends at the North, you must remember there are some at the South by whom you will never be forgotten.” “And, there are some,” I replied, “who, while this heart shall continue to beat, will be remembered with feelings of purest delight; and, though I am compelled to leave them now, they will never be effaced from my recollection.”

I spoke with an earnestness and warmth of which I was insensible, till I perceived the cheek of my fair companion suffused with blushes— and I hastened to correct the impression which I found I had made, by saying, “that the kindness and tenderness with which I had been treated since I had arrived in Charleston, could not but leave the most lively impressions on my mind with regard to its inhabitants, and would ever be remembered with gratitude.”

“Is that the only emotion which will be excited by a remembrance of the South?” asked she, with a look and manner which left no room to mistake the meaning.

“I can hardly say,” I replied, “what feelings will predominate when reason shall be left to her sway: for here I feel more under the influence of my passion than my judgment.”

“You appear determined,” said she, smiling, “to remain ignorant of the subject on which I feel a trembling anxiety to know your opinion; but whatever indifference you may manifest, my feelings will not permit me to remain in suspense. Perhaps what I have to say will lessen me in your estimation; perhaps will by you be viewed as a violation of female propriety and decorum; but I throw myself on your mercy for forgiveness. Mortimer, I Love you!—cannot live without you—you will love me—you will make me yours—then my, whole life shall be spent in making you happy!”

Heavens! what a moment! Her beautiful countenance, flushed with the purple glow of love, reposed on my bosom, and when she threw her arms around my neck, as she finished speaking, her snowy bosom throbbed against my beating heart with electric effect; her coral lips almost touched mine, and he must have been more or less than man who could have refrained from invading their vermilion sanctuary. But the hallucination was but momentary; reason assumed her station as umpire, and the passions, victorious as they had been for a moment, now bowed in quiet submission to her sceptre. A single recollection of Mary, lovely Mary, artless and unassuming, would have sufficed to have broken the chains which a thousand such females might have woven around me. But though I could not love, most sincerely did I pity her.

“My dear Miss Hanson,” I replied, as soon as I could summon resolution enough to trust my voice, “most readily do I forgive you. I know full well the emotions of the heart are uncontrollable; and you must forgive me for saying, that you have addressed me on a subject of which I as yet know nothing, and, therefore, can say nothing, except that I shall always remember with pleasure the happy hours I have spent in your company; and, that in the important affairs of love, I must be guided by the wishes of that man who has been to me a second father, and one on whom I am dependent.”

“And is it money, then, that influences you in your desires?” she replied with earnestness. “You shall have it, to the extent of your wishes; why continue to be dependent on him, when it is so easy to be independent?”

“Ah, my dear Annette,” I answered, “the warmth of your feelings makes you overlook the consequences that would flow from my acceptance of your proposals; you have forgotten that I am young, unsettled in business, destitute of property, without powerful friends, and dependent for every thing; what would the world say? what would her parents say, should the rich, the gay, and the accomplished Annette Hanson throw herself away on a stranger, friendless and homeless?”

“Say not,” said she, “that you are friendless; that will never be! All your excuses only show that you do not, that you will not love me; but I deserve to be miserable. Some more fortunate, but not faithful, girl will be blessed with that affection, that love for which I in vain have [pur]sued. Be that as it may, I trust you will be happy!”

She burst into tears, and sobbed aloud.

“Lovely girl,” said I, “my heart bleeds for you. Oh, cease those tears, I am unworthy of you—forget me—let some more deserving youth share that worth which kings might be proud to possess.”

My feelings at that moment were indescribable. Most sincerely did 1 sympathize with her: I could hardly forbear weeping. At this instant, George entered the room; he looked at us with the greatest surprise.

“I perceive,” said he, “that I have intruded.”

“Not at all,” I replied, “your presence will be a relief to us both With your leave, Annette, I will retire, and call again to-morrow, when I shall hope to find you in better health and spirits!

Never,” she answered; “but go—I shall expect you to-morrow.”

I returned home. But my perturbed imagination forbade mo to rest, and when at last my feverish anxiety overcame my senses, and I slumbered for a few moments, my terrific visions were far more intolerable than the waking reality. The image of the lovely Mary flitted before me; but impassable gulfs separated me forever from her; while the beautiful and weeping Annette, with dishevelled hair and disordered dress, seemed to reproach me with something of which I was unable to form the most distant idea. Morning at last arrived, and the breakfast table, with the cheerful influence and delightful company of Mary, soon dispelled these unpleasant impressions, and restored the usual elasticity of my spirits.

“Well, Mortimer, you had a pleasant visit yesterday,” said Mary, as, after breakfast, we took our customary walk in the garden, and seated ourselves beneath a cluster of rose-bushes. “Your countenance showed the impression made upon your heart.”

“If my countenance was a true index to my feelings,” I answered “I must have looked frightful, for my impressions since yesterday have been none of the most delightful.”

“I cannot say the same,” replied Mary, laughing, “for I have fairly obtained a new lover, one who thinks he combines in his own person all the excellences of his sex; and one who would not hesitate to blow out the brains of any one who should dare to hint that he was mistaken in his estimate of himself; yes, George has at length stooped so low as to tell Mary Mornton he loves her.”

“If that is the case,” I answered in the same careless manner, “I may as well give up my pretensions at once, and the sooner I leave Charleston the better.”

“You have spoken the truth,” said Mary, her countenance at once assuming the utmost seriousness; “the sooner you leave Charleston the better—danger may attend you here—perhaps misery to us both.”

“Mary,” said I, seizing her hand, “for heaven’s sake explain yourself! Suspense is worse than certainty.”

“I have, for some time,” continued she, ” seen to what point his attentions were directed, and my object in leaving you with Miss Hanson when I was sent for yesterday, was to give him an opportunity to throw in his declaration, as the lawyers call it, if he chose, and, by at once letting him know his case was hopeless, put an end to the tedious formalities of such a suitor.”

“I have the utmost confidence, Mary, in your management,” I replied; “but I have formed a very wrong opinion of George, if he is a person, who, when his pride and will, if nothing more, are interested, will quietly take ‘no’ for an answer, and tamely surrender such an object of pursuit.”

“You are perfectly correct,” answered Mary; “from all fools, good Lord, deliver me! but especially from a self-conceited, obstinate one. George looked at me with an air of some surprise, when I coolly and plainly rejected him; it was but a moment, however. ‘I know,’ said he, ‘that you can have no possible objection to me; but perhaps you are already prepossessed in favour of some one else; perhaps that beggarly speculator from the North has been tampering with your heart, and insinuating himself into your good graces; but whoever he may be, he will ere long repent his interference.’ ‘Mr. Hanson,’ I answered, ‘you are much mistaken if you suppose that such threats or dictation can produce any effect on the mind of Mary Mornton, except it is contempt for their author—my heart is as yet my own, but when I see fit to bestow that, with my affection, on any individual, I shall do it without considering myself accountable to you or any other person, my dear parents excepted.’ ‘You appear so well when angry,’ answered George, ‘that I am sorry to leave you; yet before I go, I must assure you, that I will bear no rival in my love to you.’ So saying, he left the room, and I feel confident,” continued Mary, “that evil awaits you, if you remain in this place; remember, you are under my directions, and I command you to depart for the North immediately—yes, to-day, if possible—that fellow would not hesitate to sacrifice you to his passions.”

“And is it you, Mary, that commands me to leave you? Is it you that would bid me forsake the society of the only person that can make life tolerable? Is it you that would interpose a distance between us, that might for ever prevent our union? and all because a blustering braggadocio threatens. No, let me perish first—I fear him not.”

“You talk like a boy,” said Mary, smiling. “I am not so willing to part with you as you seem to suppose, and it is to prevent a separation, which I, of all others, should most dread, that I have laid my commands upon you; and you will obey—I know you will, and live for happiness and—Mary!

Bewitching girl,” I replied, “you shall be obeyed, however painful your request—but think not that I can absent myself long from you: I shall soon return, be the consequences what they may.”

“When you receive my leave,” said the lovely creature, “when I have fairly disposed of George—not before, remember, not till you have my leave—if you do, it is at your peril.”

At that moment, a servant arrived with a request for me to return to the house, as a gentleman wished to speak with me. I accompanied him, and at the door was met by Mr. Mornton, who informed me that Mr. Hanson had called to see me, and was then at my lodging-room, where I repaired immediately, and found George in waiting. The cold and insolent manner with which he received my salutation, the changeableness of his countenance, and the snakelike glance of his eyes, intimated plainly the gale of the passions within.

“I concluded, after you left us, last evening,” said he, “to pay my compliments to you in person, this morning. I presume we shall remain uninterrupted.”

Certainly, sir, if you wish.”

“I do,” he replied, and I stepped to the door and turned the key.

“Now,” said he, “I demand, without circumlocution or equivocation, the reasons of your attempt to ingratiate yourself into the affections of Miss Mornton, when you must have known her engagements to me, and especially after you had pledged yourself to my sister.”

“Your language,” I replied, “is so extraordinary and unbecoming a gentleman, that unless you state on what authority you make the demand, you will excuse me if I take no further notice of it or you, except to show you the door, where the cool air might benefit you, by producing a return of your reason.”

“I will let you know,” said he, his countenance pale with rage, “before I leave you, that I am not to be trifled with. I demand the satisfaction of a gentleman, for the imposition you have practised on my sister, and are now trying to react on Miss Mornton.”

“If your sister has given you information that has led to this conduct, she has grossly belied both herself and me. I, however, do not believe a syllable of it respecting her; and so far as Miss Mornton is concerned, she is at hand, and can speak for herself.”

I moved towards the door, when he sprang from his seat, placed his back to the door, drew a pistol from his pocket, and swore most tremendously that but one of us should leave the room alive.

“I despise you and your threats,” said I, “and would leave the room this moment in spite of you, were it not that I have no wish to injure you, and I do not intend to give you the chance of murdering me.”

“I need not,” said he, “the information of any one to assist me in detecting your villany; and no one knows my intention of giving it the chastisement it deserves. Your impudent coolness shall avail you nothing; you have affronted me in such a manner, that nothing but blood can efface the stain; you have stepped between me and happiness, and when I thought that I had secured Miss Mornton, instead of meeting a return of my love, I found that you, miscreant as you are, had interfered, and I received nothing but cold incivility and reproach!”

“Your epithets, of which you are so liberal,” I replied, “you had better reserve, in order to apply where they are more needed; and as to the satisfaction you require, you can have all that the law will give, and that is all that you will get from me. I have no intention of setting myself up as a mark for every coward to shoot at.”

“Hell and furies!” exclaimed he, gnashing his teeth with rage, “do you think to escape me in this manner? No!—Miss Mornton is too high a prize for me to part with thus easily. I again repeat, that both of us leave not this room alive; here is a pair of pistols—take your choice, and defend yourself, or, by the powers above, you shall feel the contents of the other.”

I was unarmed—my pistols, which lay in the drawer, were unloaded, and he had so much the maniac in his actions, that I thought it prudent to accept the weapon offered, but with a determination to use it only in self-defence. He cocked the pistol himself, as he handed it to me, and I had walked part of the distance across the room, to resume my seat, when, happening to cast my eyes towards him, I perceived him in the act of firing. “Stop,” said I, as I faced him and almost involuntarily presented my pistol. He fired: the ball slightly grazed the side of my head, and lodged in the wall of the chamber. Perceiving that he had not accomplished his design, and mad with desperation, he threw the pistol with all his might at my head. It struck my right arm near my shoulder, and gave it such a shock that the pistol, which I still held in my hand, was discharged; the ball passed through his heart! and he dropped dead upon the floor! I flew to him, raised him up, placed him on the sofa, and, unlocking the door, cried for help. The report of the pistols alarmed the family, and I was met at the staircase by Mr. Mornton, Mary, and the servants that attended the house.

“For God’s sake, Mortimer,” said Mr. Mornton, “what is the matter? You are as pale as death!”

“Follow me, and see for yourselves,” I answered.

The struggles of death had ceased when we entered the chamber; but the floor was swimming with blood, in the midst of which lay the pistols he had intended should accomplish his murderous design; while his right hand still grasped the dagger he had convulsively seized at the moment of falling. I briefly related the circumstances that led to the encounter and its fatal termination, and requested Mr. Mornton to give me his advice respecting the line of conduct I should pursue, promising to abide by his decision, let it be what it might.

“Mortimer,” answered Mr. Mornton, “I believe you to be innocent, and that this man has met the fate he intended for yourself; but can you establish your innocence? Your declaration will avail you nothing; his friends are powerful; you are comparatively a stranger; the penalty of the law will overtake you, unless you prevent it by an instantaneous flight. Most sincerely do I regret this unhappy occurrence, since it leaves but the alternative of flight or disgraceful death! A vessel of mine has left the wharf this morning, but will not pass the bar till you can reach it;—it is bound to Havana;—from that place you can reach New York without difficulty—or should circumstances render it possible for you to appear in this place in safety, most gladly would we welcome you to our mansion. You will decide immediately; I will myself make the necessary arrangements for seeing you on board the vessel, if you choose—there you will be in safety; if otherwise”—

I looked at Mary. She understood my meaning.

“Fly, Mortimer,” said the lovely girl, “fly! fly! Would to heaven I could fly with you! preserve a life dear to others as yourself—this storm will blow over and we will yet be happy! Innocence, in this case, will avail you nothing—you will find your enemies powerful and implacable!”

“Mary,” said I, as I clasped her convulsively in my arms, “I go because you command; because you desire; but I feel as though I should subject myself to a living death by a separation from you. Farewell! and whatever may happen, remember that Mortimer is yours and yours alone!

I carried the fainting girl in my arms to her chamber, again pressed her to my bosom, and again kissed her snowy forehead; tore myself from her, and, in company with Mr. Mornton, hastened to the wharf.

“This gentleman,” said Mr. Mornton, to a number of boatman, who were standing on the wharf, “wishes to get on board the Speedwell before she passes the bar—name your price, and huzza for the oars.”

“We would willingly oblige you, sir,” answered one of them, “but it is plainly impossible. Father Neptune himself could not work a boat against this swell.”

“It must be done,” answered Mr. Mornton.

“It cannot be done,” answered the other.

“It will be done,” replied Mr. Mornton. “Remember, you make your own terms;” taking, as he spoke, a handful of silver dollars from his pocket.

“These fellows look tempting—to your oars, lads!”

“But, if we take three times the usual fee, you will not think it unreasonable; we cannot afford to run the risk of becoming food for sharks, in such a sea as this, for nothing.”

“Here is four times the usual amount—away, as for life or death,” said Mr. Mornton.

I pressed Mr. Mornton’s hand, entreated him to neglect no exertion in my favour, and sprang into the boat, which immediately shoved off.

“Mr. Mornton is quite flush with his cash this morning,” said the master of the boat, “but he knows his object—some speculations to add to his already overgrown fortune.”

“When George gets Mary, it will go as fast as it comes,” answered his companion.

“George doesn’t catch the finest girl in Charleston so easy,” replied the other. “I heard one of the clerks say, at the warehouse, this morning, that a young merchant from the North was all the toast now, and, if that is the case, you may depend, George’s hopes are all aback.”

“Hard to the starboard!exclaimed the master. At that moment a wave struck us, and half-filled the boat with water. “Bale away, lads! One more such wave as that, and we shall be drinking grog in Charon’s ferry-boat.”

We however reached the Speedwell in safety, at the instant they were getting under way, and I bade a sad adieu to the place where were concentrated all my hopes, and all my fears; and I retired to the cabin, reflecting that I was separated from Mary! perhaps forever!

Our voyage was prosperous until we arrived at Key West, where we were hailed by a small black-looking vessel, bearing the Spanish colours, and ordered to send our papers on board. Some little delay occurred, and a shot was fired at us, which passed between our masts, without however doing any injury. The mate went on board with the papers, but was instantly seized and stabbed to the heart, while the rest of the boat’s crew attempted to save themselves by jumping overboard, with the hope of reaching the Speedwell by swimming. But one reached us, as repeated volleys of musketry were fired at them from the pirate, and they sank forever, while the waves were crimsoned with their blood. It was a dead calm at the time, and two boats, filled with ferocious-looking wretches, had left the vessel, evidently with the intention of boarding us; and they succeeded, after a desperate conflict, in which they lost nearly one-half of their crew. When they at last reached the deck, we were instantly overpowered; but what was the fate of the vessel I knew not, as I was knocked down at the termination of the conflict, and remained senseless for several hours. When I recovered, I found myself on board the pirate, with several of the gang standing round me, and to my inquiries, what had become of the Speedwell and crew, only one answer was given. “We sent them to h—ll, together, for their obstinate resistance, and you would have been there, too, had we not, owing to the confusion of the moment, and your being covered with blood, mistaken you for our lieutenant, and brought you on board before we discovered our error; but, cheer up, you are now safe, for d**n it, bad as we are, we would not murder any one in cold blood; but when our blood is up, look to the consequences.”

The vessel, with the plunder, was taken in among the keys, which line the coast of Cuba, and on one of which these villains had an establishment, where myself, a few of the crew, and part of the armament of the vessel were landed, while she proceeded to Havana to dispose of the plunder of the Speedwell. Day after day, and month after month, passed heavily away, and no information whatever was received of the vessel which had left us in that desolate and hopeless condition. They became raving, and it required the exertion of all the influence I possessed to keep them from murdering each other. Nor were my sensations much more agreeable than those of my companions. I reflected almost to madness, on the opinion that must be formed of me by my indulgent uncle in New York, and my adored Mary and her benevolent father in Charleston. There was no possibility of escaping from this place, as there was not wood enough on the island to construct a raft which would float a man across the waters which separated us from the land. After we had remained nearly half a year, and every project of escape had failed, a boat which had drifted from some wreck, during a storm, had struck upon the island, and its appearance was hailed with rapture by myself and my companions. In this we coasted Cuba, and arrived at Havana. Here I found the seaman who had taken care of me when on board the piratical vessel, suffering under the effects of the wound received from me, in defending the Speedwell. From him I learned, that the piratical vessel, immediately on her arrival at Havana, was seized, on the complaint of a British agent, for an attack upon one of his majesty’s vessels, and, in consequence had, with her crew, been sent to Jamaica for trial. They were found guilty of the most barbarous crimes, and every man of them executed. He was himself fortunately on shore at the time of the seizure, and by that means escaped. I had learned from my companions, that the crew of the Speedwell were all destroyed, and after taking out such articles as were deemed most valuable, she was scuttled and sunk. Once at Havana, my resolutions were soon formed, and a favourable opportunity occurring, I determined to repair immediately to Charleston, in defiance of every danger. The image of the lovely Mary, pale and weeping, as when she bid me farewell, haunted my imagination, whether sleeping or waking. I had suffered so much during my residence among the morasses of Cuba, and my complexion had by constant exposure become so sunburnt, that I was confident, should secrecy be necessary on my arrival, I stood in little danger of detection. But, be that as it would, there was no danger I would not have cheerfully encountered, to have listened to the sweet accents and enjoyed the delightful company of Mary. I left Havana, and reached Charleston in safety. The vessel anchored in the bay, and, with a palpitating heart, I proceeded in the boat for the city. It was dark when I presented myself at the door of Mr. Mornton’s residence, and, with a faltering hand, knocked for admittance.

The door was opened by the same servant who attended when I had before resided with Mr. Mornton. I was shown into the same room where I had so often sat, but, on inquiry for Mr. Mornton, I was informed that he was out on business, but would return in an hour. I told the servant I would wait his arrival—took a volume which was lying there, and seated myself with apparent composure. Everything in the room reminded me of her I most wished to see; a beautiful full length portrait of her was suspended over the mantelpiece, and on opening the book, the first thing that met my eyes were the following lines, in the well-known hand of Mary:

Ah, why delay his wished return? Forgive me,
Oh, forgive me, Mortimer, but joys deferr’d
Make my heart sick, and hope, with all its powers,
Can scarce suppress the anguish of my bosom!
But peace each murmur, fate itself may strive,
But cannot sever thy faithful heart from mine.

The agony of suspense was intolerable; I longed to inquire for Mary, but prudence forbade. I perceived that the servant had entirely forgotten me, and I waited impatiently the arrival of Mr. Mornton. I walked the room; I listened to every step, with the hope of catching the sound of the light and fairy footfall of the lovely Mary. The hour passed away, and Mr. Mornton arrived. I spoke; he knew my voice instantly, and seized me by the hand.

“Good heavens! Mortimer, can it be you?” exclaimed Mr. Mornton, “or is it only an illusion, to mock my senses and aggravate my misfortunes?”

“It is no illusion—I am your own Mortimer,” I replied. “Oh! where is Mary? for heaven’s sake, let me see her!—let me fly to her!”

“Good God!” answered Mr. Mornton, grasping my hand convulsively, ” are you yet to hear the fatal story? are you yet to learn that Mary is in heaven? Yes, she is gone—gone forever!” added he, as the tears trickled down his cheeks, and fell warm upon my hand.

I could not weep; I could not speak; and it was with difficulty I could support myself from sinking to the floor. The agonies of expiring nature, I am convinced, will never exceed those of that moment, when every prospect of happiness was at one fell blow destroyed, and hope, the last anchor of the wretched, torn from its moorings.

“O God!” I cried, when my agitated feelings permitted the power of utterance, “why was I spared to endure this extremity of wretchedness? why was I preserved to suffer the agonies of a living death?”

“My dear Mortimer, accuse not Omnipotence rashly,” said Mr. Mornton. “I loved her as well as you. Ah! I feel too well I loved her; my heart was bound up in the happiness of Mary; but nothing earthly could save her from the conqueror’s arms. Oh ! Mortimer, these hands closed her eyes; this bosom received her last sigh; and her dying exclamation, ‘My dear father, I am hastening to the company of my dear Mortimer!’ still sounds in my ears.”

His grief found vent in tears; and I, summoning all my fortitude, ventured to make an inquiry respecting her decease, and the time the heart-rending event took place.

“You well remember,” answered Mr. Mornton, “the manner in which you left Charleston. Though it was immediately known that Mr. Hanson fell by your hands, my endeavours were successfully exerted in preventing any attempt to pursue you till you were safe beyond their reach; and as the event was one of no uncommon occurrence, it soon ceased to be a subject of remark, and Mary flattered herself that soon you would be able to return to this place, and visit your friends in safety. In the mean time, no information whatever was received of the Speedwell, and we began to fear that she had perished at sea, and all on board had been lost. It was not until after several months of painful suspense, that the account of the execution of the pirates reached us in the papers from Jamaica:—in their confession, the capture of the Speedwell and the murder of all her crew occupied a prominent place, and accounted with awful certainty for your long silence.”

I here interrupted Mr. Mornton with a short account of the loss of the Speedwell, the manner in which I was preserved from death, my residence on the island, and my escape to Havana. After I had closed, he proceeded:

“Though I endeavoured to conceal the fatal event from Mary, it was in vain; the account was copied in the City Gazette, and was immediately noticed by her. This was the termination of Mary’s hopes—the deathblow to her happiness. The roses fled from her lips; society lost its charms; she refused to see company; and was evidently hastening to that place where the weary are at rest. Although I was much alarmed about her, I could not persuade her to believe she was in danger. She always met me with a smile, but it only served to render more visible to the watchful eye of parental anxiety the hectic flush of her lily countenance. Hoping that a change of objects, a sea-voyage to New York, and the diversity of objects which we should meet with in that place, might have a beneficial effect in restoring her to health, I proposed her accompanying me to the northern metropolis. Accustomed to yield implicit obedience to my wishes, she made no objection to the proposal, although she assured me it would do her no good; and the result verified the prediction. She declined rapidly on our voyage home, was carried from the vessel to her chamber, which she never again left. Annette watched over her with the tender anxiety of a sister, and alleviated the wearisome hours of sickness by every consolation in the power of friendship to bestow. Not a murmur escaped her. ‘My dear father,’ she would say, ‘weep not for me! we shall again meet, to be forever happy.’ While life lasted, of earthly objects you were uppermost in her affections, and the last quivering accents of her tongue vibrated with your name!”

“Lovely martyr!” I exclaimed, when he ceased speaking. “Oh, why could not I have flown to thee! why could not my bosom have received the fatal arrow, that I might have accompanied thee to a brighter and a better world! And, endeared Annette, heaven will bless thee for thy kindness to my departed Mary. May thy hopes never be blighted, like those of that lovely victim; but may the smiles of heaven shower down blessings upon thee, and thy pathway of life be strewed with flowers.”

“Though I would not deny you the sacred luxury of grief,” said Mr. Mornton, “I would entreat you not to indulge in it to excess. Tears will relieve your bursting heart, and reflection will give you fortitude to support your loss. You will retire to your chamber, for we shall never be tired of conversing and thinking of our Mary.”

“No—never!” I replied, wringing his hand, as he accompanied me to my chamber, and left me, as he concluded, to my repose. Vain attempt! my burning brain forbade the most distant approach of rest. I reflected on my loss until my imagination could bear it no longer. I became bewildered, and the last that I can recollect was my smiting my forehead and exclaiming—” Oh, Mary! would to heaven I had died with thee!”

In what manner I left Charleston, is to me utterly unknown. It was on the fifth day after I landed at Charleston, that I found myself within ten miles of Savannah, in Georgia, nearly destitute of clothing, and emaciated almost to a skeleton. The events through which I had passed appeared like a distressing dream, from which I had just awakened, and it was a considerable time before I recovered a full sense of the distressing reality of my situation. I immediately proceeded to Savannah, where the kindness of a few individuals, among whom was the captain of a South American privateer, then fitting out at that port, relieved my necessities, and by his persuasion I consented to engage in the service, as second in command. I was accordingly, by my request, introduced to the crew, who were already enlisted, as a brother of the captain, recently arrived from the North; and the name of Lafitte, which I then assumed, have continued to bear. My fortunes were desperate; life was a burden; I had nothing to lose; the situation was one which well accorded with my feelings, and I did not hesitate to accept. Our commission was from the republican government of Buenos Ayres. For several years we were prosperous; I had amassed a considerable fortune, and entertained serious thoughts of returning to New York, when, one evening, as we were on a cruise off St. Domingo, looking for some merchantmen which we knew were daily expected from Spain, we fell in with a British vessel of superior force, who ordered us, under pain of being fired into, to send our boat on board and heave to till morning. Captain Lafitte refused, a short altercation ensued, and an action of the most desperate kind commenced. The British vessel was carried by boarding, after great slaughter. Captain Lafitte was killed early in the engagement—I was severely wounded by a sabre in the head—and the third in command, vindictive in disposition and exasperated by opposition, ordered no quarters to be given, and the conquered were exterminated. By this time, the government under whose orders we were acting had been put down by the Royalists, who had effected a counter revolution. We were declared to be acting without orders from any government, and, refusing to surrender ourselves for trial, were outlawed and a reward offered for our heads. It became necessary to provide for ourselves. On the death of Captain Lafitte, I succeeded to the command, and we established ourselves on the north-west part of the Gulf, and lived on our enemies. When the South Americans were again found in arms, I espoused their cause, but a majority of my men declined acting in concert with their marine, or having our fate linked with theirs. Our numbers had increased so much, that I added two vessels to our establishment, appointed Laborde second in command, and took possession of this island, where we have successfully maintained ourselves against any attempts made against us. My correspondence with New Orleans is direct, and I receive information almost weekly of the important events going on. When the present war broke out between the United States and Great Britain, we declared ourselves on the side of the former, and have acted accordingly; and, though we fight with the halter round our necks, being considered by the government as pirates, still, unless we are driven to extremities, we shall be found faithful friends to the republic.

“Thus, sir, I have given you a short account of the manner in which I became chief of this establishment; and I can sincerely say, that if our present disabilities could be removed, most cheerfully would we perform any duty which might be assigned us in aid of the government.”

“My most persevering exertions shall be used in your favour,” I replied, “and I have reason to believe with success. I am not entirely unknown to some of the officers of the government at Washington, and a representation of your wishes would undoubtedly meet with .immediate attention from the executive.”

“For your friendly proposal, I thank you,” Lafitte replied; “it promises to restore me to that world which was once enlivened by the bewitching influence of Mary.”

“Lafitte,” said I, “I should have thought that the perils you have passed through would have obliterated every trace of that victim of love from your memory.”

“When this tide ceases to ebb and flow—when yonder Mississippi rolls its turbid waters to the frozen north—when the needle forgets to point to the pole—when this heart palpitates for the last time—then, and not till then, shall I cease to remember Mary. Forget her!—impossible!”

And he drew from his bosom a small morocco case, suspended by a ribbon, from which, wrapped in a paper, he took a beautiful miniature portrait of Mary. He kissed it with enthusiasm.

This,” said Lafitte, “that lovely girl gave me at our last sad parting, and with such a memento daily before me, could I forget her? Well, well do I remember how the angelic Mary appeared at that moment; her long hair, with curling tresses, twining around her snowy neck, and slightly veiling her swelling bosom. Pale, ah! deadly pale were those lips I had so often kissed, in the fervour of unalloyed innocence and love.”

He again kissed the portrait, and was replacing it, when I observed that the envelope contained a number of lines of poetry, in the handwriting of Lafitte. I extended my hand for the paper.

“You are welcome to read them,” said Lafitte, smiling: “it has, I believe, been observed that every poet is a lover, and, by a parity of reasoning, every lover ought to be a poet. To that title, however, I make no pretensions—it is my first and last attempt; they were written during our first cruise, and when my heart bled at every recollection of Mary!—the evening was beautiful; the moon rode in silvery splendour through the clear blue heavens; not a breath disturbed the sleeping waters, and from the bosom of the waves the stars which glittered in the skies were reflected in all their brightness. Mary occupied my thoughts; I remembered the evenings I had spent in her delightful society; I reflected on my loss until my ideas assumed this form; they were committed to paper, and have since served to enclose this precious relic of former happiness.” They were as follows:


When death, dread monarch 1 hurls the relentless dart
And lays in dust the wise, the good, the great,
Deep streams of sorrow flow from every heart,
And nations mourn beneath the stroke of fate.

When the dark tomb its jaws insatiate close
On those dear forms whose souls were twined
with ours,
No stoic’s self could blame the tear that flows,
Or chase the memory from those painful hours.

Then let the muse indulge in sighs and tears,
O’er love that’s past, and joys for ever flown—
Oh, why so short our bliss?—it but appears,
Charms our fond hearts, and Is for ever gone.

Frail are our joys as is yon opening flower
That spreads its fragrant bosom to the skies:
Plucked by the intruder’s hand, In one short hour
Its bloom is withcr’d and its fragrance dies.

Swift pass the hours where friendship spreads her charms,
In dreams of bliss the months unheeded roll;
Nor dream we aught that tear from our fond arms
Those dear delights that twine around the soul.

Oh, happy moments still I think I view,
That tender bosom, and that mild blue eye,
Melting in love—then blame the joys that flew.
With winged haste, to pass away and die.

Yes; they are dead! yet memory lives to fling
Her snowy fingers o’er the engraven heart.
And trace those lines of love, which read, will bring
Remembrance of those joys from which we
never part.

Then all farewell—or bliss, or weal, or woe—
All are forgotten, buried—from this hour;
The muse resigns her harp to tears that flow
O’er love’s sweet memory, and her pleasing

As I finished reading, my eye met Lafitte’s, and I saw a tear trembling in his eye, which was hastily wiped away.

“Who comes here?” said Lafitte, lifting his glass to his eye, and mine took the same direction.

A sloop of war had just hove in view, and the British flag was flying at her peak. Lafitte replaced the portrait in his bosom, and hastened to give orders for clearing his vessels for action. This was speedily done, and all hands were at quarters. In the mean time, the sloop had anchored, and a boat, fully manned, with the white flag flying, was approaching the shore. The bearer of the flag presented Lafitte with a letter, to which he respectfully requested an answer. Lafitte ordered some refreshments for the boat’s crew, as he requested me to accompany him to the hut we had just left, and which he always occupied when on shore. He seated himself at the table, and breaking the seal, read as follows:—

To Captain Lafitte, Commander-in-chief of the Revolutionary Flotilla, in the Gulf of Mexico.

Sir—His Britannic Majesty’s forces will soon visit the south-western part of the United States with an overwhelming force, and I, as commander of his Majesty’s Navy on the American station, am authorized to offer you any office in my power to bestow, together with any sum of money you may demand, if you will consent to become chief conductor of the flotilla which will be employed on this service, and which your intimate acquaintance with these shores enables you to do with so much honour to yourself and advantage to his Majesty’s service. On your answer will depend whether we are to consider and treat you as a friend or an enemy.

“With sentiments of the greatest respect, I remain your servant,

“A. Cochran, Admiral, &c.

 At Sea, September, 1814.”

Lafitte took his pen, and, without saying a word, endorsed on the margin of the letter—” No terms with tyrants!” enclosed it in an envelope, redirected it, and handed it to the officer, with “You have my answer!” The boat returned to the vessel, which immediately weighed anchor and stood out to sea.

“These fellows, if they dared, would destroy us without ceremony,” said Lafitte, as they disappeared before a fine breeze; “but when favour is wanted, they are liberal of their promises to excess, and submissive as lambs. I shall not be troubled with them anymore, unless they see fit to make an attempt upon my establishment, when they will find more sand-bars than clear seas, and more iron than silver. But there is another vessel in sight. It is my trader, from New Orleans. I shall now be able to liberate you, and, in a few days, land you at New Orleans or Mobile, as you may choose.”

Lafitte was true to his word. On the third day after the schooner’s arrival, for such was her character, I went on board, and sailed for Mobile, as from there greater facilities were offered for reaching Washington than from New Orleans. Before I left Lafitte, I was persuaded, should my mission to Washington prove successful, to return myself with the glad news to him, in person. I landed at Mobile, reached Washington, succeeded in obtaining full pardon for Lafitte and his associates, and returned to New Orleans just as the storm, which had so long been gathering, burst with all its fury upon the coast of Louisiana. I immediately returned in a government vessel to Barataria, and was received by Lafitte with the warmest expressions of gratitude. He had, a few days previous, returned from a successful cruise, in which, among others, he had succeeded in capturing a British transport, containing a large quantity of cannon, arms, &c., destined for the attack upon New Orleans. On my arrival, Lafitte called his followers together, communicated to them the intelligence of the free and full pardon guarantied them, and upon what conditions it had been received; and gave them liberty to accept or reject the offer. “Long live the President of the United States!and “Long live Lafitte!repeatedly rent the air, and they unanimously resolved to follow him as their leader.

“Brave fellows,” said Lafitte, we will prove by our swords our high sense of the favour conferred!”

All hands were now busily engaged in conveying on board the vessels the valuable property which had been collected at that place, and the quantity of specie dragged from its various lurking-places far exceeded in quantity my idea of Lafitte’s wealth. We arrived in safety at New Orleans, and were received by Commodore Patterson, who commanded on the station, with every mark of respect. Lafitte had an honourable command assigned him, and his heroic conduct, previous to and on the ever-memorable eighth of January, is already deeply marked on the page of history.

When the British, confounded at their loss and covered with disgrace, had retired to their shipping, and all apprehension of a renewed attack had subsided, New Orleans exhibited a scene of unbounded gayety and glee. A splendid ball was given in honour of General Jackson, at which most of the officers of the army and navy were present, and all the beauty and bravery of the South appeared to be concentrated on the occasion. In the course of the evening, my attention was strongly engaged by the appearance of a young lady who entered the apartment leaning on the arm of the mayor of the city. She was very beautiful, yet the freshness of youth seemed to have passed away, and a slight shade of melancholy gave her a most interesting appearance. Intimately acquainted with the mayor, I was introduced as a friend to Miss Hanson, from Charleston, and chance soon gave me an opportunity of entering into conversation with his fair companion. The conversation turned on the remarkable deliverance New Orleans had received from the invading enemy.

“I little thought,” said Miss Hanson, “when I left Charleston, two years ago, to reside in this city, that I was to witness such a scene of turmoil as that through which we have just passed; and but a few days since, my expectations were still more faint, of beholding such a happy termination of our troubles as this evening affords.”

“It did appear extremely improbable,” I replied, “and our friends in different parts of the Union will heartily rejoice at our escape from such watchwords as ‘Beauty and booty.'”

“It makes me shudder,” she answered, “to think of the danger from which we have been rescued! Not a fortnight ago, I sincerely wished myself at Charleston; but now we are safe and happy.”

“Are you a native of Charleston?” I inquired. “A few years ago, I was considerably acquainted in that city.”

“I am,” she replied; “it is but two years since, at the earnest entreaties of my uncle, who is at present mayor of this city, I left Charleston, and accompanied him here.”

“Were you acquainted at Charleston with a young lady by the name of Mary Mornton?” I asked.

“I was acquainted with her,” replied Miss Hanson; “she was my most intimate friend; but Mary reposes quietly in the grave, the victim of unfortunate love; often have I wished I could have slept with her.”

“Was her lover a villain?” I inquired.

“Oh, no! he was as far from that, as day is from night,” she answered with earnestness; “he was one of the most amiable and engaging persons I have ever seen. An unfortunate affair drove him from Charleston, and the vessel in which he sailed was taken by the pirates, and all on board murdered! Mary’s tender heart was unable to sustain the shock, and she added another to the number of those who have fallen victims to the effect of that pleasing, painful passion, faithful love. No,” she added, “it is impossible for Mortimer Wilson to be a villain.”

“You speak with warmth,” I replied; “but you are perfectly pardonable; it is so difficult to find such a person, that it is no wonder he should attract universal admiration.” She blushed deeply. “Are you acquainted with Lafitte?I continued.

“I have never seen him,” she replied, “nor have the least anxiety to become acquainted with him; after all his heroism and courage, he is but a pirate, a murderer.”

“Our hearsay opinions are sometimes incorrect,” I answered. “I once thought as you do. You shall have an opportunity of correcting your unfavourable impressions, as I have done; pardon my absence a moment.”

I flew to another room, where I found Lafitte in conversation with several officers. There was an air of melancholy in his features, and I beckoned him to follow me. He took my hand and pressed it in his.

“Once,” said he, “I, too, could be happy; but where is Mary!”

“You can still be happy, if loveliness and disinterested affection can make you so, without Mary,” I replied.

He was about to speak, but I placed my finger on my lips, and we, in a moment, found ourselves alongside of Miss Hanson.

“Miss Hanson,” said I, “I have the pleasure of making you acquainted with Captain Lafitte, of the South American service, and a volunteer in defence of our city.”

She extended her hand with a kind of involuntary shudder; but at the moment their eyes met, her countenance was instantly suffused with the deepest crimson; but as instantly became deadly pale. She tottered towards him—” Oh, Mortimer!” “Oh, Annette !”—and they were locked in each other’s arms. Her sensations were too overpowering, she fainted in his arms, and was carried to another apartment, where, when she recovered, a full understanding of the remarkable circumstances in which they found themselves and reconciliation took place. Annette’s friends were not more astonished than delighted. Lafitte had never forgotten Annette; she was second only to Mary; and if she could not fill the void in his heart which the death of that lovely victim had caused, he felt towards her all the affection which the warmest feelings of gratitude could inspire. Annette’s attachment remained unaltered; and before I left New Orleans, I saw her made the happiest of mortals, by her union with the adored Mortimer Wilson.

National Recollections the Foundation of National Character by Edward Everett


National Recollections the Foundation of National Character by Edward Everett (1794 – 1865) was an American politician, pastor, educator, diplomat, and orator from Massachusetts.

How is the spirit of a free people to be formed, and animated, and cheered, but out of the store-house of its historic recollections? Are we to be eternally ringing the changes upon Marathon and Thermopylae; and going back to read in obscure texts of Greek and Latin of the exemplars of patriotic virtue? I thank God that we can find them nearer home, in our own country, on our own soil; — that strains of the noblest sentiment that ever swelled in the breast of man, are breathing to us out of every page of our country’s history, in the native eloquence of our mother tongue;—that the colonial and provincial councils of America exhibit to us models of the spirit and character, which gave Greece and Rome their name and their praise among the nations. Here we ought to go for our instruction;—the lesson is plain, it is clear, it is applicable. When we go to ancient history, we are bewildered with the difference of manners and institutions. We are willing to pay our tribute of applause to the memory of Leonidas, who fell nobly for his country in the face of his foe. But when we trace him to his home, we are confounded at the reflection, that the same Spartan heroism, to which he sacrificed himself at Thermopylae, would have led him to tear his own child, if it had happened to be a sickly babe,-—the very object for which all that is kind and good in man rises up to plead,—from the bosom of its mother, and carry it out to be eaten by the wolves of Taygetus. We feel a glow of admiration at the heroism displayed at Marathon, by the ten thousand champions of invaded Greece; but we cannot forget that the tenth part of the number were slaves, unchained from the work-shops and door-posts of their masters, to go and fight the battles of freedom. I do not mean that these examples are to destroy the interest with which we read the history of ancient times; they possibly increase that interest by the very contrasts they exhibit. But they do warn us, if we need the warning, to seek our great practical lessons of patriotism at home; out of the exploits and sacrifices of which our own country is the theatre; out of the characters of our own fathers. Them we know,—the high-souled, natural, unaffected, the citizen heroes. We know what happy firesides they left for the cheerless camp. We know with what pacific habits they dared the perils of the field. There is no mystery, no romance, no madness, under the name of chivalry, about them. It is all resolute, manly resistance for conscience’ and liberty’s sake, not merely of an overwhelming power, but of all the force of long-rooted habits and native love of order and peace.

Above all, their blood calls to us from the soil which we tread; it beats in our veins; it cries to us not merely in the thrilling words of one of the first victims in this cause,— “My sons, scorn to be slaves!”—but it cries with a still more moving eloquence—” My sons, forget not your father’s.”



See also: Thomas Jefferson Notes of Religion October 1776
Dear Sir: In the ancient feudal times of our good old forefathers,when the Seigneur married his daughter or knighted his son, it was the usage for his vassals to give him a year’s rent extra, in the name of an aid. I think it as reasonable, when our Pastor builds a house, that each of his flock should give him an aid of a year’s contribution. I enclose mine, as a tribute of justice, which of itself, indeed, is nothing, but as an example, if followed, may become something. In any event, be pleased to accept it as an offering of duty and a testimony of my friendly attachment and high respect.—Thomas Jefferson to his minister Rev. Mr. Hatch, an Episcopal minister, who was settled in Charlottsville, Virginia, two miles from the residence of Mr. Jefferson, as rector of the parish; Monticello, December 8, 1821
“In every country and in every age, the priest has been hostile to liberty. He is always in alliance with the despot, abetting his abuses in return for protection to his own. It is easier to acquire them, and to effect this, they have perverted the best religion ever preached to man into mystery and jargon, unintelligible to all mankind, and therefore the safer engine for their purposes.” Thomas Jefferson to H. G. Spafford, 1814

RELIGIOUS VIEWS OF THOMAS JEFFERSON; Source The Jefferson Bible: The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth edited by Thomas Jefferson published 1902 by order of Congress:

Editors Note: As Jefferson tells us in his letter to Benjamin Rush he was a Christian, he was however like many of the Christians I have grown up with, and known throughout my life, disenchanted with organized religion and opposed to the corrupting of the pure and simple religion which Jesus declared to his followers. I grew up with this same attitude and have told others “if you have to tell someone you’re a Christian then you are not.” It is time for the lies, put out by the left and those opposed to Christianity in this country to end!

“The moral precepts of Jesus are more pure, correct and sublime than those of the ancient philosophers.” ~ Thomas Jefferson Apr 19, 1803 in a letter to Edward Dowse

"the Christian religion was sometimes our topic; and I then 
promised you that one day or other,I would give you my views 
of it. They are the result of a life of inquiry and reflection, 
and very different from that Anti-Christian system imputed to 
me by those who know nothing of my opinions." ~ Jefferson


Thomas Jefferson Concerning those who Misinterpreted his Religious views (Click to enlarge)

Thomas Jefferson Concerning those who Misinterpreted his Religious views (Click to enlarge)

Begin excerpt:

“Say nothing of my religion. It is known to my God and myself alone. Its evidence before the world is to be sought in my life; if that has been honest and dutiful to society, the religion which has regulated it cannot be a bad one.”

In a letter to his daughter, written in 1803, Mr. Jefferson said: “A promise made to a friend some years ago, but executed only lately, has placed my religious creed on paper. I have thought it just that my family, by possessing this, should be enabled to estimate the , libels published against me on this, as on every other possible subject.” The “religious creed” to which he referred was a comparison of the doctrines of Jesus with those of others, prepared in fulfillment of a promise made to Dr. Benjamin Rush. This paper, with the letter to Dr. Rush which accompanied it, is a fit introduction to the “Jefferson Bible.”

Under date of April 21, 1803, Jefferson wrote to Dr. Benjamin Rush, sending him the syllabus of an estimate of the merits of the doctrines of Jesus compared with those of others. This is the communication to which he had referred in his letter to Dr. Priestley. In the letter accompanying the syllabus he tells Dr. Rush that he is sending this for his own eye, simply in performance of his promise, and indicates its confidential character in the following words: “And in confiding it to you, I know it will not be exposed to the malignant perversions of those who make every word from me a text for new misrepresentations and calumnies. I am, moreover, averse to the communication of my religious tenets to the public, because it would countenance the presumption of those who have endeavoured to draw them before that tribunal, and to seduce public opinion to erect itself into that inquest over the rights of conscience, which the laws have so justly proscribed. It behooves every man who values liberty of conscience for himself to resist invasions of it in the case of others, or their case may, by change of circumstances, become his own.”


Letter to Benjamin Rush:
Dear Sir: In some of the delightful conversations with you, in the evenings of 1798-99, and which served as an anodyne to the afflictions of the crisis through which our country was then laboring, the Christian religion was sometimes our topic; and I then promised you that one day or other, I would give you my views of it. They are the result of a life of inquiry and reflection, and very different from that Anti-Christian system imputed to me by those who know nothing of my opinions. To the corruptions of Christianity I am indeed opposed; but not to the genuine precepts of Jesus himself. I am a Christian in the only sense in which he wished any one to be; sincerely attached to his doctrines, in preference to all others; ascribing to himself every human excellence, and believing he never claimed any other.

At the short intervals since these conversations, when I could justifiably abstract my mind from public affairs, this subject has been under my contemplation; but the more I considered it, the more it expanded beyond the measure of either my time or information. In the moment of my late departure from Monticello, I received from Dr. Priestly his little treatise of “Socrates and Jesus Compared.” This being a section of the general view I had taken of the field, it became a subject of reflection while on the road, and unoccupied otherwise. The result was to arrange in my mind a syllabus, or outline, of such an estimate of the comparative merits of Christianity, as I wished to see executed by some one of more leisure and information for the task than myself. This I now send you, as the only discharge of my promise I can probably ever execute. And in confiding it to you, I know it will not be exposed to the malignant perversions of those who make every word from me a text for new misrepresentations and calumnies.

I am moreover averse to the communication of my religious tenets to the public; because it would countenance the presumption of those who have endeavored to draw them before that, tribunal, and to seduce public opinion to erect itself into that inquisition over the rights of conscience which the laws have so justly proscribed. It behooves every man who values liberty of conscience for himself to resist invasions of it in the case of others, or their case may, by change of circumstances, become his own. It behooves him, too, in his own case, to give no example of concession, betraying the right, of independent opinion by answering questions of faith, which the laws have left between God and himself.

Accept my affectionate salutations.                                                 ******


Another note from me:
As you can see when Jefferson wrote “And in confiding it to you, I know it will not be exposed to the malignant perversions of those who make every word from me a text for new misrepresentations and calumnies.” It is apparent just like the democrats, the liberal news media and pundits do to Republican politicians now, (especially those who are of a Tea Party or Reagan conservative persuasion) they are misquoted, their words taken out of context, etc., which is exactly what they obviously did to him back then.

This is shown also in the misinterpretation of The Bill of Rights today, it does not say “Wall of Separation” It says” “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof”

It was not meant to keep Christians and their Speech out of the public sphere. It was meant however to keep the government out of churches and out of peoples right to freely express their religious beliefs!

In Jefferson’s so-called “Wall of Separation Letter” he was expressing a personal opinion, get the word express, as in exercising his free right to religious expression. To have convoluted his words in that letter into having no religious expression in the public or political sphere is a direct contradiction of “free expression” and puts the first amendment of the Constitution in direct opposition to its original meaning.


More from Jefferson on his religious views:

Under date of January 29, 1815, Jefferson wrote from Monticello to Charles Clay: “Probably you have heard me say I had taken the four Evangelists, had cut out from them every text they had recorded of the moral precepts of Jesus, and arranged them in a certain order, and although they appeared but as fragments, yet fragments of the most sublime edifice of morality which had ever been exhibited to man.” In this letter however Jefferson disclaims any intention of publishing this little compilation, saying: “I not only write nothing on religion, but rarely permit myself to speak on it.”

As you see in his letter to Rush he did not speak of his religious views because he knew his words would be perverted, misconstrued, misused and misrepresented. We have seen this done in recent history when they constantly refer to the Wall of Separation letter, by those who wish to restrict people first amendment protected God-given right to the free exercise of religion according to the dictates of their own conscience.

Again, in a letter to Charles Thomson, written from Monticello, under date of January 9, 1816, he says: “I, too, have made a wee little book from the same materials, which I call the Philosophy of Jesus; it is a paradigma of his doctrines, made by cutting the texts out of the book, and arranging them on the pages of a blank book, in a certain order of time or subject. A more beautiful or precious morsel of ethics I have never seen; it is a document in proof that I am a real Christian, that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus.”

NOTE: See Jefferson was not an atheist or deist as many claim today. Indeed I would argue that he was somewhat of a coward, for not standing up publicly more than he did, for what he actually believed. Granted he was concerned about how religious leaders would use his words or opinions to promote their pet causes, and he was also concerned how others would misuse and misguide people by taking his words out of context. However in so doing he made it so as we see today how greatly they indeed have been taken his words out of context, in ways he never imagined they would be.


NoAmnestyOn Immigration and Immigrants: No less an American than George Washington had something to say on this subject. When it was proposed to bring over here the faculty of a Genevan university to take charge of an American university, he objected. He said he was against importing an entire “seminary of foreigners for the purpose of American education.” Neither did he favor sending our young men abroad to be educated. He feared what experience has shown he had cause to fear. He said they “contracted principles unfriendly to republican government and to the true and genuine liberties of mankind.” George Washington also had ideas about immigration that are good to-day. “My opinion with respect to immigration,” he said, “is, that except of useful mechanics and some particular descriptions of men or professions, there is no need of encouragement; while the policy or advantage of its taking place in a body (I mean the settling of them in a body) may be much questioned; for by so doing they retain their language, habits, principles, good or bad, which they bring with them. Whereas, by an intermixture with our people, they or their descendants get assimilated to our customs, measures, and laws; in a word, soon become one people.”

“It remains to be seen,” he declared, “whether our country will stand upon independent ground. . . . A little time will show who are its true friends, or, what is synonymous, who are true Americans.”


source: PurdueEdu

MAKING THE FOREIGN-BORN FAMILIAR WITH THE AMERICAN SPIRIT By George S. Tilroe, Syracuse, NY published 1918 New York Education.

AMERICANIZATION of the immigrant to-day involves the two outstanding forces of world-wide human interest—the material and the spiritual. It is demanded that we judge their merits and determine which shall predominate as our national characteristic.

In teaching the immigrant, we have commonly regarded our work as an effort to make him a more valuable material asset in the community. We have taught him the English language to help him get a better job and to answer the questions of the Naturalization Court. The instruction has been essentially to meet material needs. Materially, we have accomplished our purpose.

The big problem to-day, however, is not material. Our work of Americanization is a spiritual task. It requires an exercise of personality, enthusiasm and thoroughness unparalleled in the history of the republic. It demands that we arouse in the immigrant a spirit of loyalty, a spirit like that which has ever led this nation on to victory.



The spirit of the American people is the most striking difference the immigrant sees between foreign and American life. It is the spirit we point to with pride, the spirit of liberty, of freedom and independence—the Spirit of 76! It grips the foreigner on first acquaintance and the longer he lives here the better he likes it. It throws a magnetizing influence over him. It is our spirit he is acquiring during the process of his assimilation, therefore, in such degree as we display traits worthwhile, in that degree is the immigrant becoming a worth-while American. This means that we are doubly responsible for the making of good Americans. We must be good Americans ourselves, if we would hope to get the American spirit across to the immigrant. We must illustrate the American spirit by setting before our alien population examples worthy of emulation.

Unfortunately, we have run the material Marathon at such a pace that we have heard hours of such rot as that, some of them have rather disregarded the intrinsic spirit of our laws and institutions and obscured the meaning of the American ideal. Meanwhile, the alien has debated the question of American citizenship, considering whether he shall become one of us. It has been difficult for him to differentiate between liberty and license, while our material manner of looking at the situation has rather confused him. We have not imbued him with the American spirit sufficiently to get him out of the alien class, consequently we have almost over-burdened ourselves with a conglomeration of crude humanity that is now the object of no little concern in some quarters.

The world war, a leveler of peoples, a spiritual prod, a national awakener, has done us immeasurable good. We have learned more in the last year than in half a century previous. We have learned the danger of spiritual lethargy and the value of national brotherhood. During the coming months, our American spirit is doubtless due for further quickening with its natural effect upon the immigrant.

Under these circumstances it is worthwhile to take invoice of our stock of Americanism. Most of us have acquired the American spirit through study of our great men and through visiting places of historical significance. Certain leaders and their heroic deeds stand out boldly. They were part of our education. When barely out of the cradle we learned about the hatchet and the cherry tree, about Honest Abe, the rail splitter. We have also learned about millions of common folk, living the simple life, who went to the front when duty called, but we seem to have overlooked the meaning of our nationality, for, it is said that “More than 50 per cent, of us have less than a 50 per cent, knowledge of the principles underlying the foundation of our government.”

Materially minded schemers have helped load us up with the problems now confronting us. They have victimized thousands of immigrants, many of them so many times that they have become distrustful of well intentioned persons who approach them with a sincere desire to help them. Meantime many of our better classes, rich and poor, have stood by, indifferent to the proceedings. We have declared that we need these folk to do our drudgery, to dig our ditches, to do our dirty work! Material selfishness has befogged the issue of American patriotism! We have led thousands of our immigrants no farther than the slums with harmful results. The American spirit withers in the hovels and dark passageways of the tenement sections. Many aliens, however, have swallowed the bitter pill of social ostracism and appeared here and there as leaders of influential colonies. Although many have not risen above the level of the common laborer, they have acquired enough of the spirit of genuine democracy to return to their native lands and spread American ideas. Some of our immigrants are sitting in legislative halls, others are spreading sedition and treachery!

Instead of consigning the alien to the slums, let’s open up to him not only the opportunities of our industrial centers, but also the advantages of the rural regions where fresh air and sunshine are plentiful, and clannishness is short lived. It is our duty to teach of all our resources and how they may be used for the common good. Before we can do much teaching, we must solve the problem of reaching these people. We must have funds and we must get our pupils into well equipped school plants where the American spirit is exemplified in all the surroundings. The American eagle can’t scream well cooped up in a foul cage.

Heretofore, in our immigrant education campaigns, we have used every available means to fill our evening schools. We have opened classes near immigrant homes, used posters, letters, missionaries and moral suasion. We have reached many through social activities and helped them because we appealed to their human, spiritual side, but definite results have been disappointing. We have not reached the masses.

In many of our cities, immigrants who have been in this country many years, have not taken advantage of instruction offered gratis in our night school. In some cities much less than 10 per cent, of the total foreign population is attending. In New York state are more than 3,000,000 foreigners ten years of age and over. Thirteen per cent, of them are illiterate as compared with 1 per cent, of the native born.

The showing is not quite so bad throughout the nation as a whole for, among children of foreign-born parentage, there is less illiteracy among the whites than among children of native born parents. Fully 50 per cent, of our children drop out of the elementary school into material activities, foreigners to greater degree than natives. A comparatively small percentage of all go through high school. In the high school and colleges, however, the native-born boys and girls outstrip immigrant children, showing an advantage over the flow from the elementary schools into material avenues of life employment. If they learn to exercise their minds along thought channels, young men and young women of the high schools and colleges are the hope of perpetuating in this country a race of thinking, reasoning human beings. It requires more than a machine to perpetuate the American spirit.

There is yet much to be done and it must be done through the greatest Americanization agency in the world—the American public school.

The work must be centralized here. It should not be scattered among various institutions and organizations which produce only indefinite results. The American spirit is nourished in the public schools and in them we must provide the proper kind of Americanism. There must be no taint of enemy propaganda anywhere in our educational system!

Raw material for the schools is available in this country to the extent of some 13,000,000 foreign-born people. One fifth of them cannot speak the English language and a much larger number have not yet grasped the American idea otherwise. It is our duty to teach them and their duty to try to learn. We owe it to them, they to us and all of us to our country. We must emphasize co-operation to preserve our democracy, for without it, democracies fail.

The old Athenian democracy, which produced a grand example of virtuous, civilized manhood, went to pieces. It had one fault. The people had no capacity for working together, consequently stronger, warring peoples, by using might, gobbled them up. But many of the good qualities of the ancient Greeks survive. They are the qualities showing the spirit of the people. Pericles emphasized the cultural side of their nature and did a lasting service to mankind.

Even old Greece had its alien problem. The spirit of that age drew a contrast between the principles of democracy and those of foreign, barbarian folk. The Greeks had to battle against evil influences of brutal, savage tribes of northern Europe, influences of two thousand years ago which are cropping out to-day. Thus, in so far as civilization in the finer sense is concerned, our problem is like that of Pericles’ time.

The spirit that prompted Pericles prompted the founders of this republic. It led to the adoption of the Constitution, the foundation of Americanism. If our immigrants become familiar with this they will have in its first paragraph the keynote of the American spirit in these words, “We, the People of the United States, in order to form a more perfect Union.” In this union, we escape the fault that caused the downfall of the mother of democracies and secure a guarantee of national strength. We Americans have been brought up under the spirit of this Constitution, while in Europe, for several centuries, there has been a material existence of undemocratic characteristics. Our immigrants, with few exceptions, were trained under this autocratic system of education. In America, we have used a democratic system, although we have allowed autocratic features to creep in, some innocently and others deliberately. Definite steps have been taken not only to disrupt the nation, but also to put foreign features into our education system. It is not a matter of language; it has to do with the introduction of European ideas. It concerns the fostering of materialistic principles which, in an autocracy, have produced a  generation of common people now subservient machines manipulated by rulers who command barbarism which the educational training of the masses enforces them to practice. We have no place in America for any part of an educational system that trains immigrant children or alien adults for any such subserviency as this, yet here is what I read in a volume published in America six years ago: “Germans made many struggles to introduce and foster their language in our schools, taxed themselves for the maintenance of German schools, and fought in the press, the legislature and on the stump. There was Scheib in Baltimore, Feldner and Schneck in Detroit, Engelman and Herflinger in Milwaukee, Heilmann in Louisville, Conrad Krez in Wisconsin,” and scores of others. The author regrets that credit has not been given these men for their pioneer work in establishing a German normal school in Milwaukee and in devoting their energy and means to the preservation of German in this country. This was published six years ago. What do you think of it to-day? We have not only permitted ourselves to be exploited by foreigners but many of our own educators have gone abroad to gather up foreign ideas for American consumption. Some may be good and some bad, but, considered from the viewpoint of America First, there must be Americans able to devise Yankee substitutes for those worthwhile.

Several questions arise right here. Should not American educators investigate the subject and weed out objectionable foreign features that have gotten into our schools? If European systems of education produce a people in the condition of subserviency in which we believe Teutonic peoples to be living, do we want this kind of education in America? Do we want our people to be mere material machines or do we want them educated to enjoy life as it should be lived in a free democracy? Do we want them fitted only for work or do we want them prepared not only to work intelligently but also able to employ their leisure hours happily and profitably? The material was never intended to consume the whole day nor even one-half of it.

No less an American than George Washington had something to say on this subject. When it was proposed to bring over here the faculty of a Genevan university to take charge of an American university, he objected. He said he was against importing an entire “seminary of foreigners for the purpose of American education.” Neither did he favor sending our young men abroad to be educated. He feared what experience has shown he had cause to fear. He said they “contracted principles unfriendly to republican government and to the true and genuine liberties of mankind.” George Washington also had ideas about immigration that are good to-day. “My opinion with respect to immigration,” he said, “is, that except of useful mechanics and some particular descriptions of men or professions, there is no need of encouragement; while the policy or advantage of its taking place in a body (I mean the settling of them in a body) may be much questioned; for by so doing they retain their language, habits, principles, good or bad, which they bring with them. Whereas, by an intermixture with our people, they or their descendants get assimilated to our customs, measures, and laws; in a word, soon become one people.”

“It remains to be seen,” he declared, “whether our country will stand upon independent ground. . . . A little time will show who are its true friends, or, what is synonymous, who are true Americans.”

The acid test of our Americanism is now on. Immigrants and natives are showing their colors. Our history teaches us that true Americans are held in reverence; traitors go to ignoble graves!

Whispering ” Tis well,” George Washington died, mourned by a nation.

Benedict Arnold went out a penitent, despised by everybody.

Among his many benefactions, Washington left us a suggestion that fits nicely into our scheme of Americanization. He favored a plan to spread systematic national ideas throughout the nation. In this way immigrants may learn the workings of the American spirit and what sort of men have guided our destiny. Illustrations are plentiful. The Pilgrims came here for freedom of worship. From the belfry of Old North Church a lantern signaled Paul Revere to begin his famous ride before Lexington and Concord. Seven thousand patriots gathered at Old South Church for that great American camouflage, the Boston Tea Party. Washington prayed for success at Valley Forge. John Adams recited every night the prayer his mother taught him as a boy. Ethan Allen appeared at Ticonderoga in the name of the Great Jehovah and the Continental Congress. This sort of spirit was back of the American revolution!

In Civil War days, Abraham Lincoln said, “Let us strive to deserve the continued care of the Divine Providence, trusting that in future emergencies He will not fail to provide us with the instruments of safety and security.”

And there is the Gettysburg address! It was the American spirit that gave us these: “With malice toward none, with charity for all;” “Give me liberty or give me death;” “Liberty and union, now and forever, one and inseparable!” In all this there is something higher than the material. It is powerful enough to repel a foreign foe. It has never tasted defeat.

This kind of Americanism taught to our immigrants has been the only force directly counteracting the spread of foreign propaganda in this country during the past twenty-five years! Its effect is seen on European battlefields to-day!

Fully one-third of the volunteers for the regular branches of the army, navy and marines this year are of foreign birth or parentage. In industrial centers they have volunteered in a ratio of 3 to 1 as compared with native sons. Many of them learned Americanism in our night schools. I saw some of them clad in khaki, march away. I went to the railway station with them. I was proud of them. I met others before the draft boards, accepting service without claim of exemption. I was proud of them because the chairmen of the examining boards told me they were showing a remarkable spirit in that they volunteered when they might claim exemption on the ground of being aliens. It was ample reward for fifteen years’ effort to get the American idea across. During the past three years the government has come to help us in this service. It has started a campaign of Americanization. We welcome the movement. It will help us continue the transformation of immigrants into highly respected and prosperous American citizens. We know many who have traveled this road. We are in touch with all nationalities, some of whom are scattered to all parts of the world. In America, we hope to cement this material into one spiritual union. The press, the pulpit and our law-making bodies can aid this work by considering such propositions as these:

1. Suppression of foreign language newspapers.

2. Supervision of societies of foreigners.

3. Scattering of colonies of foreigners.

4. Licensing of persons acting as interpreters.

5. Deportation of foreigners who refuse to declare their intentions after one year’s residence, unless registered.

6. Licensing of those who assume to prepare aliens for the Naturalization Court.

7. Compulsory attendance at evening schools of foreigners who cannot speak English.

8. Government control of public Americanization agencies centralized in the public schools.

9. The teaching of foreign languages in our schools by Americans.

Through education and legislation we must work together in that unity outlined in the Constitution, not forgetting that the genuine American spirit is one of right living under the Golden Rule. We have achieved success in a material way and enjoy many inventions, but no invention has yet approached the splendor of the spiritual. We are ringing a change on the materialistic tendencies of several centuries. The spirit of Christian brotherhood is getting hold of us. We are getting to be more like human beings. This humane spirit is a feature of democracy. May all nationalities be so imbued with it that “This nation, under God, shall not perish from the earth.”


founding_fathersTHE INFLUENCE OF POPULAR EDUCATION UPON THE NATION An Address By Prof. S. S. Rockwood, Of The Wisconsin State Normal School. Delivered At Janesville, Wisconsin, July 4th, 1876.

Mr. President, Ladies And Gentlemen,—I know very well what I am expected to say, I know what is the proper and conventional story to tell you. I know that the emblematic bird must be plucked to-day in your very presence until he looks like a Thanksgiving turkey on the morning of that inevitable Thursday in November. I know as well as tongue can tell that nothing less than filling the air about you with his Centennial plumes will satisfy your patriotic demands. Nothing less than the veritable “Old Abe” himself, fluttering and screaming in your faces, will fully come up to the requirements of this occasion. But there are two insuperable reasons that stand in my way. In the first place, the glorious old “.War Eagle of the Eighth Wis. Vol.,” is at this moment playing a star engagement at Philadelphia, where he is flapping his broad wings in the face of the world; and in the second place, in the division of labor for this day, the centennialism has been handed over to the silver-tongued lawyers and orators who are to follow me, and quiet themes have been assigned the schoolmasters.

I have always thought that great occasions are never wanting to those who are equal to them, and that fame and honor and the abiding confidence of the country wait upon the man who proves himself equal to every occasion.

I still believe in that doctrine, and on the other hand, I see the oblivion that shall hide the man who speaks on this occasion, and this day, the day of all other days, the occasion of all occasions that have seen the light in this country for a hundred years.

But where is the man who can utter the thought of this supreme moment? Who shall fitly speak the word Columbia has waited a century to hear?

FranklinIt is not you, my friends and fellow-citizens, who alone participate in these exercises; the living heroes of the past, whom we call dead, are coming up from every part of the land and world, to make an unseen audience into whose listening ears the words of every speaker must fall this day.

I consider myself fortunate in the theme assigned me. The last great thought of the world is popular education. The ripe fruit of the wisdom of all the ages is the enlightenment and consequent elevation of the masses.

To have discovered the grand laws of the stellar universe and marked out the paths of the planets, to have, invented movable type, to have solved the riddle of the circulation of the blood, to have tamed the lightning, and turned steam into a beast of burden, to have invented poetry and song, and developed art, were mighty things for mighty men to do, but to have discovered that the divine use of all these was for the education and refinement of the toiling millions, was the mightiest service of all. Knowledge is not only power, it is hope, it is consolation; but the wisdom of its application to the advancement of the common people, is the chiefest treasure of all time.


The ultimate effects of the education of the people, no man can foretell. The gift of prophesy is gone with the lost arts, and therefore I only propose to notice a few results already achieved, and point out what seem to me a few of its chief tendencies. I shall not attempt a history of the idea. I take the district school as a perfectly familiar and accepted fact. I take education by the State as a conceded reality. I shall not try to show how it falls short of a true ideal, nor shall I discuss the means and methods for improvement. I wish to discover, if I can, some reasons for being better satisfied with the past, better contented with the present, and more hopeful for the future.

In the growth of civilization, from time to time, have arisen great enterprises, enormous needs which no private means however freely contributed, were able to achieve, and their attainment has rightfully been among the true functions of government, and the education of the masses is the last great labor of that kind.

It seems to me that the idea of popular education is the outgrowth of the great truth, that, after providing for the support of life, the chief aim of mankind should be spiritual and intellectual culture, and some day we shall all defend education by the State on this high ground.

What is the effect of the enlightenment of the masses in the Old World as far as already felt?

Why, sir, you know and the world knows that it is fast making kings and emperors mere figure-heads; the scepter is rapidly becoming as hollow and brittle as a bamboo walking-stick, and the lack of it puts a nation into the condition of Spain, with its enlightened leaders whom the people cannot follow; or into that of poor old Turkey, where an enlightened and progressive government is unable to keep step with the century because of the ignorant prejudice and degrading superstition of the people.

It was once supposed that he who made the songs of a people was mightier than he who made their laws.

Thirty-six years ago this very summer, the hard-cider and log cabin songs carried “Old Tippecanoe and Tyler too” into the Presidential chair, but where is the imbecile who supposes that could be repeated this summer? Just imagine, if you can, the people of to-day swept along and consumed by the fire of such a purely emotional awakening. Since that time, the school-master has been abroad in the land, and the appeal this summer is to our understanding, and not to our emotions. The political speaker, now, who carries his points and wins our votes, must give us reasons, not sentiments; he must give us logic, not emotion; he must give us facts, not mere fancies; in a word, he must convince our judgments and not simply inflame our passions and prejudices. The influence of popular education, therefore, is to enable the people to do their own thinking.

I know very well that certain would-be philosophers stoutly maintain that the idea of the people’s thinking for themselves is the merest moonshine and nonsense. They declare that you can’t talk with a man ten minutes without knowing what papers he reads and what church he attends, and so can tell who furnishes him his religious and who his political opinions.

In the first place the assertion is only the shadow, ten feet high, of a truth, and a shadow may be cast on a wall ten feet high by a jumping-jack as well as by a man, and though a man has intelligence enough to make him read the papers and go to church, and although he agrees with both his editor and his pastor to-day, it by no means follows that he will not disagree with one or both tomorrow, and for reasons he can state quite as cogently as either of them.

And here let me say that the newspaper of to-day is itself a reality, because the people have been to school, and for the same reason we shall never have imposed upon us a State religion.

To educate the people is to make the state a servant, it is to make the government an employ, and loyalty to the flag becomes fealty to yourselves. To educate the people is to abolish caste. In the district school the problem of race-influence, which is not in the books, is being solved unconsciously, while others of less importance that are in them occupy the thoughts of the scholars.

Benjamin Rush GospelTo educate all is to make each secure. The true relations of mine and thine are appreciated only by an enlightened people. The reign of brute force goes out with ignorance, and the benign reign of law comes in with intelligence. What we put into our schools we shall willingly enjoy in our government. If the men and women who go into the common schools shall teach by precept and example that which gives probity of individual character, there can be only one result to the nation.

The tendency of popular education is to enable the people to know a patriot from a demagogue, a statesman from a mere politician. I think even now we are beginning to discriminate between the master of political questions and the mere juggler with party issues. I am glad to say to you that it appears very much as though the people can tell, even now, the man who can devise and run governmental organisms from the “Boss” who can simply invent and run party machines.

To educate the populace is to make the civilization more complex, and like the animal organism, the more complex the higher. To educate a people is to increase their power of enjoyment, and therefore to increase their wants. What could Shakespeare be to a Modoc, Raphael to a Patagonian, or Beethoven to a Fiji Islander?

Do you say that prisons and poor-houses have multiplied with the increase of schools? You forget that where there are no schools, the beggars and lepers throng the streets, and the thieves and robbers lie in wait for you at every turn. The stimulus to care for the one, and restrain the other class, is the outgrowth of enlightened sympathy on the one hand, and of intelligent justice on the other.

To educate the people is not to make the college man less, but the common man more; it is to level up, and not down.

The effect is not to cheapen culture, but to elevate our standards; it does not impoverish the few, but enriches the many; it only prevents the mountain peaks from appearing so lofty by the mighty uplifting of the foot-hills.

And, finally, my friends, it seems to me that any element in the social and civil economy of a nation, that produces such results and tendencies as I have hinted at, is not only worthy of exaltation and glorification on her hundredth birthday, but on all her birthdays to the end of time.


ELEMENTS OF OUR AMERICAN PROSPERITY by Professor Steven H. Carpenter 1876

Professor Stephen H Carpenter

Professor Stephen H Carpenter

ELEMENTS OF OUR [American] PROSPERITY An Oration By Steven H. Carpenter, LLD., Professor In The University Of Wisconsin. Delivered At Madison, Wisconsin, July 4th, 1876.

Fellow-citizens—We are met to day to celebrate the demonstration of a great truth; the truth that Liberty is not the baseless dream of visionary enthusiasts; that a government by the People may be stable and lasting. Tried by the vicissitudes of a century, this Republic has withstood every shock, and has passed from a dimly-seen hope to a magnificent reality. It has gathered under its protection men of every language, and proved that Freedom is the Right of man by uniting them into one People, by the firm bond of loyalty to the same great truth.

Youth has no Past. Its active energy sees only the Present. Age has a past, to which it fondly looks, when its waning strength seeks solace in recalling the prowess of its early years, and boasts of deeds no longer possible to its lessened vigor. We have no musty records to search, no far-reaching history to recall. Our heroic age has hardly passed. Our golden youth has not yet stiffened into the harshness of an iron present. The memory of those still living holds the fresh records of our progress. Men whose natural force has not yet abated have seen our weakness grow to power, have seen the wilderness transformed into a blooming garden, and stately cities rise as by the enchanter’s wand from the untamed soil. But shall not youth glory in his strength? Shall a just pride not lay hold of present achievement as well as past glory? Behind us are gathered the materials for our heroic history. Age is hastening after us, and to-day we turn the first century of our national existence.

There is a power in Antiquity—in the feeling that behind us is a long line of noble ancestors, a solid inheritance in the glories of the Past. It curbs the wayward strength of youth, and adds dignity to the compacted vigor of manhood. This advantage is rapidly coming to us. We have a common inheritance in the heroism of the Revolution.

On an occasion like this when we stand at the summit of a century of unbroken success, our minds alternately follow the lead of Memory casting her proud glance backward over the brilliant past, and Hope casting her confident gaze into a future full of greater promise. “We look backward over the slow receding years of the century just closed, and we see a little band of heroes, jealous of their God given rights, seeing not the weakness of their numbers, but only the strength of their cause, with a sublime confidence in the ultimate victory of right, resolutely facing the foremost power of the world. Looking out into the deepening darkness that shrouded the coming years of almost hopeless struggle, they boldly, almost defiantly proclaimed not merely their own right to liberty, but the right of man to self-government. They struck a blow for humanity.

That contest was not the mere shock of contending armies; it was the fiercer shock of contending ideas. It was not the maneuvering of legions on the field of battle; it was the marshaling of principles in a struggle that should determine whether the world should go forward, and offer a new field for the enlarging powers of man, or whether it should stagnate on the dead level of old ideas, stupidly satisfied with the good it had gained.

At last, after eight years of struggle, of alternate victory and defeat, Freedom was secured, but their allotted work was not yet done. A nation was to be formed out of the discordant elements which the pressure of necessity had forced into a temporary union. Statesmanship was to complete the work of generalship, and unite into a compact whole the fragments thus far held together by a loose cohesion. Our revolutionary fathers proved equal to the task, and by this victory over passion, by succeeding where all other men had failed, they placed the world under everlasting obligation. Other patriots had fought as bravely, had endured as heroically; but no other patriots so conquered self, so vanquished prejudice, so laid the foundations of a nation in mutual concession for the general good.

God is a prompt paymaster. The reward was not long deferred. The period of unexampled prosperity followed. All the world claimed the privilege of sharing the benefit of our sacrifices. They swarmed in upon us from every nation of Europe, attracted by a fertile soil, a healthy climate, and the more alluring promise of a free government. At the close of the Revolution the entire population of the United States numbered but three millions. They were mostly confined to the narrow strip between the Allegheny Mountains and the sea. Here and there adventurous bands had crossed, over into the fertile plains beyond, only to find their advance stubbornly contested by the Indians who refused to leave, without a struggle, the hunting-grounds of their fathers. The valleys of the Ohio and Mississippi were still an unbroken wilderness, except where French traders or Missionaries had established their posts to seek the goods or the good of the red man, or where sturdy pioneers had made their precarious settlements. The great Lakes were almost unexplored, and the districts adjoining were still more unknown. Marquette, Allouez and La Salle, had pushed their daring discoveries into this remote region, but theirs was the genius of discovery, not of settlement. The French could discover and subdue, but they could not organize.

It is but eighty years since this vast region, stretching from the Allegheny Mountains to the Pacific Ocean, was opened to settlement. Men now living have seen the western line of civilization creep timidly from the boundaries of New York and Pennsylvania, push steadily westward through the forests of Ohio, cross the fertile prairies of Indiana and Illinois, sweep with hardly a perceptible check beyond the Mississippi, strike boldly across the vast plains of the West, climb the heights of the mountains, descend the further slope of the Sierras, to meet a resistless barrier only on the distant shores of the Pacific Ocean. Men now living have seen this waste wilderness converted into a blooming garden, covered with fruitful harvests, and dotted with the peaceful homes of more than ten millions of people. The Indian has retreated before his fate; barbarism has yielded to civilization. The niggardly gifts of Nature have been replaced by the wealth that plenty pours with a full hand into the lap of industry. Labor here reigns king, unvexed by any rival. The air hums with the busy whirr of machinery. The engine flashes by, weaving, like a gigantic shuttle, the bonds that bind distant States in one community of interest.

Let us not stand mute in stupid admiration of our present greatness, but let us in the spirit of true philosophy seek to discover the basis upon which our prosperity rests, and the laws and controlling forces by which our success has been wrought out. A true civilization rests upon a moral basis. The civilization of the old world had made physical well-being its highest ideal, but it did not prove capable of indefinite expansion: it could not rise; it could not advance. Here civilization laid hold of moral forces, and pressed forward with a power well-nigh resistless. Physical good soon reaches its limit. Even that art that aims only at material beauty soon attains its highest ideal, and falls back upon itself to minister to passion and to hasten the ruin of the glittering culture which it has created, that conception of the true nature of man that considers him as a moral force, and not a mere intelligent machine, that looks at nature from its spiritual side, that fixes the ideal of civilization not on the low level of mere physical improvement, but on the higher plane of intellectual and moral culture, that aims at perfect manhood, and rates birth or wealth below character, affords the only ground for a safe and steady advance. This great truth was emphasized on every battle-field of our late war. The idea of freedom won. That conception of human society that graded men according to physical accidents yielded to the superior power of that idea which, ignoring all physical differences, upon the broad basis of human equality, organized society according to the theory of equal rights and equal and exact justice to all.

Three steps led to our present unexampled prosperity.

Declaration of Independence

The first was the Declaration of Independence which first distinctly enunciated to the world the doctrine of Equal Rights. It was a decided step in advance to ignore all accidental differences, and to unify all mankind on the single principle of absolute equality. The Declaration was a defiant challenge of the old theory of government; it called in question principles quietly acquiesced in for centuries. To assert the rights of the people was a great step, but it was a step that might lead downwards to anarchy, and through anarchy to despotism, as in France, as well as upward to Liberty and free government. The other half of the truth must be told in the equally definite assertion of the absolute and inherent need of government—thus accurately adjusting the political relations of the citizen. Man demands government no less imperatively than liberty; he demands government, because only through it can he secure liberty.

The presence of a common enemy, and the manifest need of union held the States together until the close of the revolutionary war. When the compulsion of this necessity was no longer felt, the need of a closer bond—one originating from within, and knit from well-defined principles, securing a union by the recognition of ends yet to be gained in common, beyond the mere acquisition of liberty—soon became evident. Liberty is only a condition of good government rendering it possible; it is not a cause compelling it. The yoke of foreign domination had been thrown off; the yoke of self-government must yet be put on. The need for something more than had yet been gained was shown by a loss of public respect for the general government, disordered finance, depreciated currency, with all the evils incident, mutual jealousies, conflict of jurisdiction between the States themselves; between States and the general government, threats of armed collision; the most alarming systems of anarchy threatened the public weal, until all that had been gained by eight years of war seemed on the point of being lost for want of a far-sighted statesmanship to resolutely grapple with and solve the problem now presented. There was but one way out of these difficulties—to go forward, to assert as clearly the right of the nation to protection against anarchy as the Declaration had asserted the right of man to protection against tyranny; to build upon the foundation that had been so heroically laid in times of war and trial; to sow the vacant field with ideas that promised a fruitful harvest, and no longer leave it to grow up to thorns that promised only increasing irritation. Happily for us, the men of that day were not wanting in the great crisis. Upon the firm basis of Equal Rights as laid down in the Declaration of Independence, they built the solid superstructure of Constitutional government. From scattered, discordant fragments, they compacted a new nation.

Stock Photo of the Consitution of the United States and Feather QuillThe second step towards the prosperity of this people was taken in the adoption of the Constitution in 1787. This was not simply an alliance between States. That had already been secured by the Articles of Confederation, the utter inadequacy of which could no longer be concealed. This was a union of the people—the birth of a nation—an assertion of the right of man to government, as the Declaration of Independence was an assertion of his right to liberty.

The greatest victories of those days that “tried men’s souls” were not won on the field of battle, where man meets man in the rude shock of brute force, but in the senate chamber, where mind meets mind in the conflict of principles, where inveterate prejudice gives way to the calm pressure of reason, where narrow selfishness yields to the demands of enlarged patriotism. The adoption of the Constitution was such a triumph. To have been the first to take this step in advance is glory enough for any nation. Speaking of the Constitution, Lord Brougham says: “The regulation of such a union upon pre-established principles, the formation of a system of government and legislation in which the different subjects shall not be individuals, but States, the application of legislative principles to such a body of States, and the devising means for keeping its integrity as a [Con]Federacy, while the rights and powers of the individual States are maintained entire, is the very greatest refinement in social policy to which any state of circumstances has ever given rise, or to which any age has ever given birth.” Says De Tocqueville: This theory was wholly novel, and may be considered as a great discovery in modern political science. It was not only because she had championed the Rights of Man that America placed the world under lasting obligation; it was also because she established Freedom upon rational principles, had harmonized Liberty and Law, and thus made a durable democracy possible, that the world looks to her example to learn the way to lasting liberty.

Ordinance_of_1787The last, and no less important step, was taken when the Ordinance of 1787 was adopted for the government of the North-west territory.. The adoption of this Ordinance antedates the adoption of the Constitution, but its influence in national affairs was subsequent to the immediate influence of that instrument. This document shows an enlarged and advanced view of the powers and duties of government. It enunciates several principles which were also incorporated into the Constitution of the United States. It laid down the broad and then quite novel principle of absolute religious toleration; it asserted the inviolability of contracts, thus placing the authority of integrity above that of legislatures; it first clearly uttered the sentiment now so familiar that “Religion, Morality and Knowledge, being necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind, schools and the means of education shall forever be encouraged;” it insisted upon keeping good faith with all men, and demanded justice even for the Indians, who had for ten years been waging a cruel and bloody war against the settlers in this very territory; it at once and forever prohibited slavery, and thus led the way to its final eradication from this country.

We need trace our history no further. Here we find the grand secret of this unexampled prosperity and the conditions of our future success. In this triple recognition of the rights of man, the just limits of government, and the paramount claims of Religion, Morality and Education, we find an ample explanation. Upon the foundation of Equal Rights, as laid in the Declaration of Independence, a Constitutional government was erected upon the immovable pillars of Religion, Morality and Knowledge, based not on arbitrary enactment and secured by force, but resting still more firmly in the conscientious regard of the people. We have no religion defined by the State and enforced by law; we have what is better, Religion voluntarily practiced by the people. We do not have an education thrust upon the people by compulsion; we have what is better, a people who do not need the coarse stimulus of this coercion. In the recognition of these moral forces as determining the condition of mankind, we may find the reason why we have succeeded in securing at the same time liberty for the people and stability for the government. Until taught by our example, the world believed that liberty was but another name for license and lawless anarchy; that stability was the prerogative of despotism. But the tottering thrones and fleeing kings of the Old World have proved that the arm of Force is not strong enough to hold a kingdom stable, and that the government is most firmly seated that rests upon conceded rights, and guards the rights of the people with a sleepless jealousy.

The nations of the world are met in the City of Peace to offer us their heartfelt congratulations, bringing the accumulated treasures of art and industry to grace this glad occasion. Fit place for such a gathering, fit occasion for such a celebration! It is the Festival of Peace, as well as the birthday of Freedom. Industry bends its tireless energies to lighten the pressure of wearisome labor. Art, hand in hand with Toil, brings her treasures to grace our holiday. Even grim-visaged War puts on the garb of Peace, and with an awkward smile displays his death-dealing enginery in bloodless repose. The sword-girt, mail-clad warrior is no longer the world’s hero. The conqueror is no longer the ideal man. The hero of to-day is the Inventor who elevates mind by freeing muscle, who bends his blest endeavors to lift the yoke of labor from the bowed necks of the toiling millions.

The nations are all here, and this friendly gathering utters anew the greeting of Heaven, “Peace on Earth, goodwill to Men.” We do not celebrate this day alone. Others share in our joy. Every nation on the globe above the lowest level of barbarism gives us a hearty God-speed, for there is not a people that does not feel the beneficent impulse which our example has given the world. Liberty has a new meaning since man has proved that a king is not a necessary evil; that the majesty of right is above the majesty of man; that the sway of justice is more enduring than the rule of force. This grand truth, first proclaimed by the heroes of the elder days, first demonstrated by our convincing example, has been wrought into the convictions of men by the steady pressure of our advancing prosperity. Well may the world join us in celebrating this peaceful triumph, for all men have part in our glory and share our gain. Our Declaration of Independence gave a voice to the half-formed thoughts of humanity, and brought to man a-knowledge of his inalienable rights. Our Constitution has made true liberty possible not only for this nation, but for all mankind.

RevWarVetMarkerThe Dead too are here:—not dead, but living in the deeds which they wrought and in the affectionate remembrance of their fellowmen. Their immortal spirits see the fruits of their labors, and today they rejoice with us. From Concord, Lexington, Bunker Hill; from the stubborn contest with cold and hunger at Valley Forge; from Cowpens, King’s Mountain; from Saratoga and Yorktown; from every nameless battle-field of the Revolution; from the fresher graves of our last and sternest war, their jubilant spirits throng in upon us to-day, and join in the gladness of the grand chorus of praise that swells up before the throne of the God of Nations. The sea, too, gives up its dead. From every ocean grave, from the quiet depths of Erie and Champlain, those who sunk to their peaceful rest amidst the noise and tumult of battle rise to join us in the celebration of this day which their valor and devotion bequeathed to us. They are all here: I need not speak their names. Time would fail me to mention the surrounding cloud of exulting witnesses. The Golden Gates stand wide open to-day, and well may Heaven join Earth in celebrating a day like this. We do not exult over the blood-stained triumphs of War; we rejoice in the victories of Peace. We boast not of conquest; we glory in Freedom. We count not the struggle; we see the gain.

Then let us celebrate this day with glad rejoicing, for it is a day fit to be remembered through all time. Through a frail infancy, through a wayward youth, Freedom has passed forward to the full strength and the maturer powers of a vigorous manhood. The nation has attained its majority. Let all the World join in our rejoicing. Let all Nature, from the heights of Summer, crowned with her most gorgeous beauty, with every inarticulate symbol, voice the universal joy, as she joins man in his jubilant chorus of praise to the Giver of all good.

See also: 
The Consequence of Bad Legal Precedent in American Legislation
Wide Spread And Growing Corruption In The Public Service Of The States And Nation
AMERICA OUR SUCCESS OUR FUTURE! by John P. Gulliver July 4th 1876 NYC
RISE OF CONSTITUTIONAL LIBERTY by Dr. Richard Salter Storrs July 4 1876
The Betrayal Of ‘We The American People’ Our Nation! Our Birthright!
Public Servants Who Fasten Themselves on the Public Treasury Like Leeches
OUR REPUBLIC! By Jeremiah Taylor at Providence, R. I., July 4th 1876
THE PERPETUITY OF THE REPUBLIC by Joseph Kidder July 4th 1876
OUR NOBLE HERITAGE by Hon. George W. Curtis (1824 –1892)
THE GENIUS OF AMERICA by Hon. Dr. Felix R. Brunot July 4, 1876
THE COST OF POPULAR LIBERTY by Brooks Adams July 4th 1876

AMERICA AND JUDAISM by Rabbi N. I. Benson, Mississippi, 1876

AMERICA AND JUDAISM An Address By Rabbi N. I. Benson, D. D. Delivered At The Jewish Temple, Jackson, Mississippi, July 4, 1876.

When the hoary hand of time passed the hour of midnight in the preceding day, America had passed a century, and entered upon a new one; and in consequence the same enthusiastic millions of people inhabiting its free soil and enjoying the liberty and energy’s reward sent forth to the King of all kings, Ruler of all nations, a thanksgiving which was appropriate for past dispensations, and an earnest solicitation for future grace. The enthusiasm manifested to-day by America’s children is one of no idle clamor or noisy shouting—it is the voice of the people, acknowledging the gifts of their divine Ruler. If anything in the wide world should call forth a national, and in fact, a universal enthusiasm, it is the celebration of this anniversary, in which a grateful people can behold the realization of what were but hopes, one hundred years ago. The grievances stated by a suffering people in the Declaration of Independence, one of which alone were sufficient to impede the progress and cultivation of any class of people, when the freedom of speech was not tolerated, when the chains of despotism were around their necks, when the yoke of oppression by the tyrannical laws of an unscrupulous tyrant, as the then King of Great Britain was, where the germs of greatness could not be developed, —then I say it was a time to revolt-and throw off the yoke of oppression, and to endeavor to show to that tyrannical monarch, that man has no master, save one, their Creator. And they rallied! they harmonized! and with one unanimous voice the representatives of 40,000,000 people proclaimed themselves free and independent. With one unanimous struggle they threw off the yoke of despotism, and laid before the world their pent-up grievances which gave cause to their revolt. And they succeeded! and what, my friends, think you was the cause of their success? – Perhaps you may think it was physical strength which produced these wonders! Oh no! for we are well aware that the English army outnumbered the Americans vastly in equipments, in regularity, in military tactics and maneuvers. What then was the secret spring of success? Ah, my friends, it was right against might! Yes, my friends, America had a most noble ally right in its ranks; that ally was right arrayed against might; and thank God, in this instance, right won the day. Behold, was it not Providential during the war, where a handful of ragged men drives out from its soil a well-regulated army! Yes, my friends, it was the hand of God. and America is much likened to my beloved creed Judaism. For behold, were we not slaves in Egypt under a tyrannical Pharaoh, and by the goodness of the Almighty God, He sent unto us Moses, who carried out the word of God according to revelation. Even so was America in bondage to Britain’s despotic monarch, and God hearing the voice of the oppressed, sent unto you George Washington, America’s Moses, who, inspired by God, led the ragged and suffering men entrusted to him by Congress, to the field of glory and triumph; and as the children of Israel went out of the land of Egypt unto perpetual liberty, and finally entered into the promised land in glory and triumph, even so did Washington by his patriotism finally and eventually conquer his opponents, and America became the beacon of perpetual liberty, the wonder of the world, a land which we may indeed call the land of milk and honey.

In no country is labor so highly respected, and so well remunerated as in the United States; and in none therefore are the laboring class so happy, and we may add enlightened. No restrictions are laid on industry; political privileges are extended to all. and the humblest citizen may raise himself to the proudest position in the Republic.

Our mechanics have brought a high degree of ingenuity as well as skill to their work; and through their means America has become justly famous for her inventions and improvements. Among a host of things that might be mentioned, it is undeniable that the best locks, life-boats, printing presses and agricultural implements, come from America.

The labor of building up the resources of a new country has as yet left the people of the United States little time and opportunity for cultivating literature and the arts. Yet we point with pride to our meta-physician Edwards; our lexicographer, Noah Webster; our mathematicians, Bodwitch and Rittenhouse; our naturalists, the Audubon’s; our novelists, Irving and Cooper; our poets, Bryant and Longfellow; our sculptors, Powers and Greenough; our painters, Copely, Stuart, Trumbull, Vanderlyn, Allston, Peale and Sully. If there is one thing on which, more than all others, America may pride herself, and found high hopes of stability for her glorious institutions, it is her system of common schools ; she offers the advantage of education to the young without money and without price, convinced that their enlightenment is her best safeguard. Now, having thus enumerated the results of a hundred years’ growth, let us see what could be the cause of this prosperity. In reviewing back the history of other nations, we cannot behold the same results. Instead of progress and amelioration, decay and strife hath proved its career. The secret upon which these noble results are based, is framed in a very few words in the Constitution, wherein is quoted the following words: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press.” Ah, noble words! upon these rests the progress of the nation. To how many countries has the non-observance of these words proved a downfall and ruin? How many millions of people have been put to death in the universe on account of the non-adoption of this noble principle; but America, prosperous and fortunate country, thou hast taken unto thee a precept which will eventually develop itself; and the world will look upon thee with admiration and respect. Never will there be in this soil a governor as Appeles, in the days of the Maccabees, who endeavored to enforce conformity in the religious observances and to abolish the laws of Moses; nor will there nestle in thy bosom tyrants like Syro Grecians, [Syrian-Greek mix] who having discovered the fact that the Jews would not use any arms on the Sabbath, even in self-defense, and taking advantage of this scrupulous observance of the holy day of the Lord, attacked a cave near Jerusalem wherein secreted themselves a thousand pious worshippers of God, and slaughtered them without mercy ; nor will there ever be on this soil a madman like Antiochus, who, because they would not renounce their ancestral faith caused, a mother and her seven sons to be put to a death the most ignominious by tortures the most revolting.

The spirit of liberty—liberty of conscience, liberty of thought and speech, the inalienable right of man, has made rapid progress upon the free soil of this vast and blessed Republic, which has been inhabited by human beings hailing hither from all parts of the globe; and Israelites too have sought and found shelter and protection under the banner of the stars and stripes, and settled themselves also in the State of Mississippi. Pursuing the annals of this State we discover traces of Jewish steps in your midst as far back as at least a half a century ago. Most of the early Jewish inhabitants of this State have already long since departed from this world of sorrow and woe for the unknown regions of eternity. But some of them by their constant adherence to the laws of equity and justice, of loyalty and benevolence, left behind them imprints more lasting than monuments of cold marble, and which will never be erased from the memory of Jew or Gentile.

Judaism teaches the equality of person and universal salvation. And it is but just to acknowledge that you, my Christian friends, have tacitly expressed your acknowledgment that the Jew is as good as any other man, that we all have but one Father; one God created us all; and by that acknowledgment, which to us speaks louder than words, you have expressed your belief that in the kingdom of Heaven, there is no distinction made between the Jew and Gentile.

1Then indeed, may I uplift my hands to Providence and thank Him, upon this anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, that He, in his benign grace, caused the day to dawn at last, when Jew and Gentile shall walk hand in hand in life, to see at last, that they are indispensable to each other, and I trust that the Creator of the Universe shall strengthen and cement these filial bonds of brotherhood, that when our children shall celebrate one hundred years hence, that this bond of brotherhood shall have become so strong and mutual, that no false doctrines, nor sectarian dogmas, shall be able to sever not even the smallest link.

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)
Christianity and the Founding of the United States the Simple Truth
Advice to Young People from Noah Webster Father of American Education
PATRIOT SONS OF PATRIOT SIRES by Rev. Samuel Francis Smith 1808-1895

OUR REPUBLIC! By Jeremiah Taylor at Providence, R. I., July 4th 1876

Power of History2OUR REPUBLIC! An Oration By Rev. Jeremiah Taylor, D. D., Delivered At Providence, Rhode Island, July 4th, 1876, At The Planting Of A Centennial Tree In Roger William’s Park.

Mr. President, Ladies, Gentlemen, Youth And Children: A German schoolmaster once said, “Whenever I enter my schoolroom, I remove my hat and bow with reverence, for there I meet the future dignitaries of my country.” Standing as we do this hour upon the high places of national prosperity and joining with the forty millions of people, the inhabitants of our proud and grateful country in this centennial celebration, the future outlook is awe-inspiring. To us as to him of old, who beheld the bush burning, yet not consumed, there comes the admonition, that we are standing in the presence of the high and the holy. In the order of the exercises which the committee have arranged for this day’s work among us, I am impressed that each department illustrates well some grand historic fact, or enunciates some underlying principle which has built and which must conserve this Republic.

You will have observed that the celebration began by a military and civic procession which, after winding through some of the principal streets of the city, brought up at the venerable “meeting house,” which is older than the nation, and has stood all these years blessing the people, and there combined with the services of religion and the reading of the Declaration of Independence and the address of eloquence.

WeThePeopleWhat better picture of the state of tilings one hundred years ago, when stirred with eloquence as the fire of patriotism burned bright and all consuming, men rushed to their altars for divine guidance, and then to their implements of war, to conquer or die. “A civic and military procession!” just that was the army of the Revolution springing up from field and workshop and all trades and professions wherever a hero might be found and the sacred cause moved him. Next in order to-day came the grand Trades Procession; symbolizing the prosperity of the country during a century of life and industry, and what nation under the whole heaven, can exhibit such a growth in a century as we do to-day, in all these things which constitute the strength and glory of a free people?

The third act in the scene of this pageantry is the one passing here, in which the children and the youth are so largely represented; from whose ranks are to arise the men and the women of the future. Yes, here we stand in the presence of the nation that is to be. There is a meaning, too, in the regatta appointed for the silent hours of incoming evening upon the quiet waters of the Seekonk That old stream that has played so important a part in ages gone as well as now; that yielded her bosom just as readily when furrowed by the canoe of the red man before civilized life began, as now it endures all the wantoness and sport of the trained sons of Brown. For shall we not see in the struggles of the boat race the intensified energy and stimulated purpose exemplified which must constitute the warp and woof in the great business life of the future?

That nation only has a future among the centuries that shall be worthy of record, which employs all her skill and well-directed enterprise to keep fully abreast of all the questions that bear upon human weal, and, when rightly solved, bless mankind to the last degree. We want the bone, the muscle, the sinew capable of hardly endurance, not less than the well-trained thought and sterling virtue for future use. The old Republic, weakened by effeminacy, perished. May God save us from such an unhonored grave!

Portrait_of_George_WashingtonIt will be seen then from this run along the line of the procession that the morning service had a more special reference to the past; was largely puritanic while this of the afternoon and evening contemplate the future, and are mainly prophetic. Let us catch the inspiration that ought to move us even here and now. I have said this service is future in its bearings. But lest the muse of history should turn away in sorrow, stop a moment before we proceed with that idea. Let us not forget this place is hallowed ground. Go up into the old house which has crowned the brow of the hill for the century past, and which has just been “fixed up” for the century to come. Then walk down to the well of whose pure waters, the Williams family drank from generation to generation, and which when mixed with tea gave such zest to the evening hours in the life of Betsey, to whose noble benefaction it is due we are here in such joyous mood, feeling that we are part owners of these twenty acres, if we hold not a foot of soil outside the Park. Then pass down into the sacred enclosure where the “forefathers of the hamlet sleep,” and read the quaintly lettered story of their life and death. We are sorry that you cannot look upon the face of old Roger himself, the patron saint of all these domains, and whose statue with a face as he ought to have looked when living, will one day appear ready to defy the storms of the open heavens as they may here sweep over the plain. But in the absence of that costly embellishment, walk across yon rustic bridge where you will find the apple tree and Roger Williams in it. But to our theme,—With these children from our public schools, and you, Mr. President representing the Board of Education, before me, how natural to say a few things in regard to education and government. And thus we shall see what the children must be and do to render the future grand—enduring. I have just read the story of the “Blue-eyed Boy,” who peered through the keyhole into the Hall of Independence, saw the venerable men sign the Declaration of Independence, then of his own accord shouted to the bellman to ring forth the joyful tidings, then leaping upon the back of his pony, self-appointed, rode night and day to the camp of General Washington, located in New York, and communicated to him what had been done in Congress, and this two days before the commander-in-chief received his dispatches from the proper authorities. Like that patriotic, heroic boy, we want the children of to-day to herald down the coming ages the great facts and principles of our nation’s life and glory. How can they do it?

We have planted our centennial tree; whether it survives and flourishes, or dies after a few months, depends upon certain established laws in nature. Soil, climate, sunshine and storm are to tell in the one direction or the other. The Republic of of the United States, which to-day wears a matronly brow and bears the wreath of a century, is to abide in honor and flourish in prosperity, or to perish from being a nation under the operation of laws no less fixed and obvious.

betsy_ross_flag1We are probably now passing through the test period of our existence. We have seen the sword cannot devour. The world knows, we know, that our arm of power is strong in defence and protection. The adverse elements which, during the century gone, have at times appeared so fierce and destructive, have only reduced elements of strength. Prosperity is often more dangerous than adversity. When Moab could not conquer ancient Israel on the field of battle, she did so spread her net of enticement as to decoy and imperil her. If we have come through the scourge of the sword strong, who can say that corruption and loss of public virtue shall not mark our ruin? We must educate the young aright, if we are to conserve what we have received and now hold. It has been said, “the chief concern of a State is the education of her children.” As a prime element in this education, we have need to inculcate American ideas of government. This may be quite easy to do with that portion of the young that are born here, and whose blood is Anglo Saxon; without other ingredients, the blood and the birth place both have an important bearing. The Englishman, reared on the other side of the Atlantic, does not easily comprehend the genius of our free institutions, and there noticeably are duller scholars still. The government here is through the people, and of course belongs to the people. I am a part of the nation, and am to my measure of ability responsible for what the national life is. This idea of being a factor in the Republic becomes one of the most potent influences for good; one of the most powerful educators in the land. It was this idea that brought to the field of battle such vast armies to save the government in its last scene of danger, and rendered them so tractable, wise, enduring, brave, where no standing armies existed before. Now whether a man came from China or Ireland, Japan or Germany, the north pole or the south pole, let him understand at the earliest possible period, that he is one of us and owes allegiance to no government but what he helps to constitute. It has been said many a time, that the English debt makes the English government strong—because so many of the people are creditors. Our own government in the late war made the people largely its creditors for a like reason. But the bond of our union is deeper, broader than this, more binding, more sure. It is this, that not only the money is ours, but the honor and prosperity, and the very being of the nation belongs to the people. And allow me to say that our system of popular education is one of the best agencies that can be employed to inculcate, foster and strengthen this idea. Every school in our land made up of a distinct nationality, on a fundamental principle of religion or politics, is fostering a spirit anti-Republican, and fraught with evil to our free institutions.

If any people are so purblind as not to see that we offer to them through our public institutions better educational opportunities than they can transplant here from the Old World, then we beg they will abide under their own vine and fig tree and leave to us and ours, what we so highly prize, and propose to perpetuate. We shall not submit to any foreign domination, whether it be political or ecclesiastical.

There will naturally be connected with this American idea of government, as a second educational element, patriotic fervor. One of the weakest things in the old Ottoman power so shaken just now that indicates its near ruin is a lack of patriotism. Such an emotion as love of country is not found there. The Turk may fight because he is forced to, not because his home, family and native land are dearer to him than life.

The Storming of Stony Point by Alonzo Chappell

The Storming of Stony Point by Alonzo Chappell

It was this patriotic fervor that brought our nation into being, and this must be an important instrumentality in its continuance. Read the closing sentence in that immortal document which one hundred years ago this very day so fired and nerved the people in their great struggle for liberty: “And for the support of this declaration, with firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.” Those words were no mere rhetorical flourish, when published. They included all the language could express, and infinitely more than such a declaration ever contained before.

It may be quite easy to frame resolutions and give pledges in times of peace; but the hour when the framers of the Declaration of Independence spoke so boldly and meaningly was when war was at the door and the hand of a most powerful nation was upon the throat of her feebler Colonies.

To pledge life, property, sacred honor then was to have them put in immediate requisition for the imperiled cause.

It meant, as Benjamin Franklin said to John Hancock, as he wrote his bold name and remarked, (1)”We must all hang together. Yes, we must indeed hang together, or else, most assuredly, we shall all hang separately.” That high-toned sentiment, fearlessly uttered was sustained by sacrifice and intense endurance. Republics are made of youth and let there arise generation after generation of youth, so infused, men of such devotion to the good of the country, and we are safe for the century to come, for all future years while the world standeth; for:

Our country first, their glory and their pride,
Land of their hopes, land where their fathers died,
When in the right they’ll keep her honor bright,
Wherein the wrong they’ll die to set it right.

It was a painful feature of our American life made prominent before the late rebellion, that so many eminent in positions at home, or traveling abroad, affected to despise their birth-right, were ashamed of their country. They claimed to be English rather than Americans, when in foreign lands. And when here on our soil, fostered, honored, had nothing of the national life and spirit about them.

In such an ignoble spirit the rebellion was matured. They were ever decrying their home blessings, and extolling the beauty and bounty of institutions far away. We are thankful that spirit, so vain and silly, so unnatural and obsequious, has been so thoroughly flogged out of the nation. I do not think so big a fool can be found in the entire land, in this day of grace, July 4, 1876, as a man who chanced to be born in our famed country, wishing the lines of life in the beginning had fallen to him in some other place. American citizenship has passed the period of reproach. It challenges the homage of the world. It is set in gems of beauty. It is royal diadem.

In studying the character of the men who became the founders and framers of this Republic, we find they were distinguished for sterling integrity, and so we must see to it that the young, rising up around us, are possessed of the same element of character, if our institutions are to be perpetuated. What we want to-day in our country is men who can be trusted. They are here, no doubt, and will appear and take their place when called for. Gold is good, and we want that, but men more. We have had a decade of sordid sentiment and base practice.

Such a state of things is not unusual after a season of war. Competition was widespread after the Revolution.

hero_of_vincennes1The vile mercenary spirit has invaded all departments of life and influences. The greed of gain, inflamed by a desire for personal gratification, has been too strong for the ordinary barriers of virtue and fair dealing, and what wrecks of character, fortune and life even have appeared as a consequence upon the surface of society. Men who have become insane through lust and gain scruple not at the use of any means which may accomplish their purpose. And so we distrust one another, and wonder if we shall find at the Centennial Exhibition even that noblest work of God, “an honest man.” It is thought by many that the evil is self-corrective, that the appalling depths of iniquity which have been revealed will frighten and compel a hasty retreat on the part of those who have ventured on the perilous extreme. That is not the ordinary law of reform. Reeking corruption does not of itself become a scene of sweetness and beauty. Let us trust in no such vain hope. Rather let the education of the young be the source of cheerful expectation. Train up the children in the ways of integrity. Let it be engraven upon their hearts in the deep-bedded lines of ineffaceable conviction, that righteousness exalteth a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.

Better is the poor that walketh in his uprightness, than he that is perverse in his ways though he be rich.

“Ill fares the land to hast’ning; ills a prey,
Where wealth accumulates and men decay.”

Another important lesson to bo taught our youth is that wealth is not the end, but the means, and so our life ought to be one of well-appointed industry and careful husbandry, whether we be rich or poor.

Harriet Martineau, who has just died at her home in England, after traveling through this country and observing the working of our free institutions, recorded as her deliberate opinion that no calamity could befall an American youth more serious in results than to inherit a large patrimony.

The idea has been so wide spread, that if a man has riches he has attained already the chief end of his being, that an overindulged, useless life, is almost a sure concomitant of inherited wealth; more diligence, less extravagance, should be the watchwords with which to start on the new century. With the very fair show which the benevolent department of the country may make as to-day she unrolls her record of church work at home and abroad, her educational work, with endowed colleges and public libraries, her charities to the poor and the unfortunate, it must yet be apparent that as a people we have not learned how to use wealth aright.

The great industries of the land are depressed. The hands of the laborer are seeking in vain for something to do, and the rich are becoming poor, as a consequence of the recklessness of habits in the modes of earning and spending in the past. The same is true of a liberal education, as of wealth. The youth who, blessed with opportunities for a higher education, must be made to feel that they are carried through the schools, not to be drones in society, fancy men, but that they may contribute to the wisdom, integrity and every virtue in the high places of state and nation.

It is sometimes said that higher education unfits some for business. Send a boy to college and he is good for nothing except in the learned professions. “If this be so, then our educational system needs reorganizing.” The old maxim that knowledge is power, is true, and broad as true. A man will be better fitted to fill any occupation in life for a higher education, if he has been educated aright. Out upon any other theory. Let the people everywhere be made to feel this, as the graduates do honor to their privileges, by meeting the just claim that society has upon them and the questions about graded schools and free colleges will fail to be discussed for want of an opponent.

Our country offers the highest prize for every virtue, all trained talent. It is base, it is mean, it is contemptible, not to be true, noble and good when the way to ascend is so easy; where the people are so ready to crown, and honor him who deserves to wear a crown, and when our free institutions are so deserving of all the support and praise we can bring them.

One word more. This has been a Christian nation during the century past. The great principles of divine truth have been wrought into the foundations and abide in the structure. The Word of God has been our sheet anchor in the past; it must be so in the future. Someone has said “Republicanism and freedom are but mere names for beautiful but impossible abstractions, except in the case of a Christainly, educated people.” Keep this thought in the minds of the young, in all their course of education, and they will rise up to bless the land, and possess her fair and large domain. It was [Alexis] De Tocqueville who said, “He who survives the freedom and dignity of his country, has already lived too long.

May none before us, or in the generations following, live thus long. Our Republic to the end of time.

See also: THE POWER OF HISTORY by Horatio Seymour (1810–1886)
RISE OF CONSTITUTIONAL LIBERTY by Dr. Richard Salter Storrs July 4 1876
SCORN TO BE SLAVES by Dr. Joseph Warren 1741-1775
THE MARCH OF FREEDOM by Theodore Parker 1810-1860
THE GENIUS OF AMERICA by Hon. Dr. Felix R. Brunot July 4, 1876
Wide Spread And Growing Corruption In The Public Service Of The States And Nation
Power of History2

THE POWER OF HISTORY by Horatio Seymour (1810–1886)

HoriatoSeymourTHE FUTURE OF THE HUMAN RACE, An Oration By Ex-Gov. Horatio Seymour, Delivered At Rome, New York, July 4th, 1876.

The superior man acquaints himself with many sayings of antiquity and many deeds of the past, in order to strengthen his character thereby. ~ John Milton

I Do not come before you merely to take part in a holiday affair, nor to excite a passing interest about the occasion which calls us together. While my theme is the History of the Valley of the Mohawk, in speaking of it the end I have in view is as practical as if I came to talk to you about agriculture, mechanics, commerce or any other business topic.

There is in history a power to lift a people up and make them great and prosperous. The story of a nation’s achievements excites that patriotic pride which is a great element in vigor, boldness and heroism. He who studies with care the jurisprudence of the Old Testament, will see that this feeling of reverence for forefathers and devotion to country is made the subject of positive law in the command that men should honor their fathers and their mothers. But sacred poetry is filled with appeals to these sentiments, and the narratives of the Bible abound with proofs of the great truth, that the days of those who fear them shall be long in the land which God has given them. All history, ancient and modern, proves that national greatness springs in no small degree from pride in their histories, and from the patriotism cherished by their traditions and animated by their examples. This truth shines out in the annals of Greece and Rome. It gives vitality to the power of Britain, France, Germany and other European nations. The instincts of self-preservation led the American people in this centennial year to dwell upon the deeds of their fathers and by their example to excite our people to a purer patriotism, to an unselfish devotion to the public welfare.

The power of history is not confined to civilized races. The traditions of savage tribes have excited them to acts of self sacrifice and heroism, and of bold warfare, which have extorted the admiration of the world. The Valley of the Mohawk gives striking proofs of this. The Iroquois, who lived upon the slopes of the hills which stretch from the Hudson to the shores of Lake Erie, called themselves by a name which asserted that they and their fathers were men excelling all other men. Animated by this faith which grew out of their legends, they became the masters of the vast region stretching from the coast of the Atlantic to the banks of the Mississippi, from north of the great Lakes to the land of the Cherokees.

Unaided by arts, without horses or chariots, or implements of war, save the rudest form of the spear and the arrow, they traversed the solitary forest pathways, and carried their conquests over regions, which in extent have rarely been equaled by civilized nations with all the aids of fleets, or the terrible engines of destruction which science has given to disciplined armies. History gives no other example of such great conquest over so many enemies or difficulties, as were won by the Iroquois, when we take into account their limited numbers. Does any man think that all this would have been true if they had not been stirred up to a savage but noble heroism by the traditions of their tribes?

governorhoratio-seymourThe power of history over our minds and purposes is intensified when we stand amid the scenes of great events. Men cross the ocean and encounter the fatigues, dangers of a journey to the other side of the earth, that they may walk through the streets of Jerusalem, or look out from the hill of Zion, or wander amid sacred places. These scenes bring to* their minds the story of the past in a way that thrills their nerves. Or, if we visit the fields of great battles, the movements of armies, the thunder of artillery, the charge, the repulse, the carnage of war, the ground strewed with dead or dying and slippery with blood, are all presented to our imaginations in a way they can not elsewhere be felt or seen.

If beyond the general interest of history which incites to national patriotism, and in addition to the scenes of events which stir our blood when we move among them, we know that the actors were our fathers whose blood flows in our veins, we then have acting upon us, in its most intense form, the power of the past. Patriotism, and love of the land in which we live; a pious reverence for our fathers, all unite to lift us up upon the highest plane of public and of private virtue.

The men and the women of the valley of the Mohawk meet here to-day not only to celebrate the great events of our country, but to speak more particularly about deeds their ancestors have done on these plains and hillsides, and then to ask themselves if they have been true to their country, to their fathers and themselves by preserving and making known to the dwellers in this valley and to the world at large its grand and varied history. Have they been made household words? Have they shaped the ambitions and virtues of those growing up in the fireside circle? Have they been used to animate all classes in the conduct of public and private affairs?

Just so far as the dwellers in the valley of the Mohawk have failed in these respects, they have cheated and wronged themselves. They have failed to use the most potent influence to elevate their morals, intelligence and virtue. They have not brought themselves within the scope of that promise which religion, reason and experience show, is held out to those who honor their fathers, and incite themselves to acts of patriotism and lives of public and private devotion, by keeping in their minds the conduct of the good and great who have gone before them.

Let the events in this valley during the past three centuries now pass in review before us. Its Indian wars, the missionaries’ efforts, animated by religious zeal, which sought to carry religion into its unbroken forests and wild recesses; the march of the armies of France and England, with their savage allies, which for a hundred years made this valley the scenes of warfare and bloodshed; the struggle of the revolution, which brought with it not only all the horrors ever attendant upon war, added to them the barbarities of the savage ferocity that knows no distinction of age, sex or condition, but with horrible impartiality inflicted upon all alike the tortures of the torch and tomahawk. When these clouds had rolled away through the pathways of this valley, began the march of the peaceful armies of civilization which have filled the interior of our country with population, wealth and power. The world has never elsewhere seen a procession of events more varied, more dramatic, more grand in their influences.

The grounds upon which we stand have been wet with the blood of men who perished in civilized and savage war. Its plains and forests have rung with the war cry of the Iroquois, and have echoed back the thunder of artillery. Its air has been filled with the smoke of burning homes, and lighted up by the flames of the products of industry, kindled by the torch of enemies. Let this scene impress your minds while I try to tell the story of the past. With regard to the savages who lived in this valley, I will repeat the statements which I made on a recent occasion, and the evidence which I then produced in regard to their character.

Power of History1We arc inclined to-day to think meanly of the Indian race, and to charge that the dignity and heroism imputed to them was the work of the novelist rather than the proof of authentic history. A just conception of their character is necessary to enable us to understand the causes which shaped our civilization. But for the influence exerted by the early citizens of this place upon the Iroquois, it is doubtful if the English could have held their ground against the French west of the Alleghenies.

In speaking of them the colonial historian Smith says:

These of all those innumerable tribes of savages which inhabit the northern part of America, are of more importance to us and the French, both on account of their vicinity and warlike disposition.

In the correspondence of the French colonial officials with Louis the Great, it is said:

That no people in the world, perhaps, have higher notions than these Indians of military glory. All the surrounding nations have felt the effects of their prowess, and many not only become their tributaries, but are so subjugated to their power, that without their consent they dare not commence either peace or war.

Colden, in his history, printed in London, in 1747, says:

The Five Nations think themselves by nature superior to the rest of mankind, and call themselves “Onguekonwe,” that is, men surpassing all others.

This opinion, which they take care to cultivate in their children, gives them that courage which has been so terrible to all nations of North America, and they have taken such care to impress the same opinion of their people on all their neighbors, that they on all occasions yield the most submissive obedience to them. He adds; I have been told by old men of New England, who remembered the time when the Mohawks made war on their Indians, that as soon as a single Mohawk was discovered in the country, these Indians raised a cry from hill to hill, A Mohawk! a Mohawk! upon which they all fled like sheep before wolves, without attempting to make the least resistance, whatever odds were on their side. All the nations round them have for many years entirely submitted to them, and pay a yearly tribute to them in wampum.

We have many proofs of their skill in oratory and of the clearness and logic of their addresses. Even now, when their power is gone, and their pride broken down, they have many orators among them. I have heard in my official life speeches made by them, and I have also listened to many of the distinguished men of our own lineage. While the untutored man could not arm himself with all the facts and resources at the command of the educated, yet I can say that I have heard from the chiefs of the Five Nations as clear, strong and dignified addresses as any I have listened to in legislative halls or at the bar of our judicial tribunals. Oratory is too subtle in its nature to be described, or I could give to you some of the finest expressions in Indian addresses.

They did not excel merely in arms and oratory, they were a political people. Monsieur D. La Protiere, a Frenchman and an enemy, says in his history of North America:

When we speak of the Five Nations in France, they are thought, by a common mistake, to be mere barbarians, always thirsting for blood, but their characters are very different. They are indeed the fiercest and most formidable people in North America, and at the same time are as politic and judicious as well can be conceived, and this appears from their management of all affairs which they have not only with the French and English but likewise with almost all the Indians of this vast continent.

As to their civil polity, Colden says in 1747:

Each of these nations is an absolute republic by itself, and every castle in each nation is governed in all public affairs by its own sachems or old men. The authority of these rulers is gained by and consists wholly in the opinion the rest of the nation have of their integrity and wisdom. Their great men, both sachems and captains, are generally poorer than the common people, and they affect to give away and distribute all the presents or plunder they get in their treaties or in wars, so as to leave nothing to themselves. There is not a man in the members of the Five Nations who has gained his office otherwise than by merit. There is not the least salary or any sort of profit annexed to any office to tempt the covetous or sordid, but on the contrary every unworthy action is unavoidably attended with the forfeiture of their commissions, for their authority is only the esteem of the people, and ceases the moment that esteem is lost.

In the history of the world there is no other instance where such vast conquests were achieved with such limited numbers without superiority of arms. More than two hundred years ago, when the New England colonies were engaged in King Phillip’s war, commissioners were sent to Albany to secure the friendship of the Mohawks. Again, in 1684, Lord Howard, Governor of Virginia, met the sachems of the Onondagas and Cayugas in the Town Hall of Albany. These councils by the governors and agents of the colonies became almost annual affairs. The power of Colonel Peter Schuyler with the Iroquois at this day was deemed of the utmost importance by the crown. Perhaps no other man in our history exerted so great an influence over the course of events which shaped the destinies of our country. For he was a great man who lived and acted at a time when it was uncertain if French or English civilization, thoughts and customs would govern this continent. He and the chiefs who went with him to England were received with marks of distinction and unusual honor by Queen Anne.

The Hollanders were the first Europeans who were brought in contact with this people.

Before the Pilgrims had landed at Plymouth Rock, they had made a settlement on the Hudson, where the capital of our State now stands. At that time, the most commercial people of the world, their ships visited every sea, and they were accustomed to deal with all forms of civilized and savage life. In pursuit of the fur trade they pushed their way up the stream of the Mohawk, and by their wisdom and prudence made relationship with the Indians along its banks, which was of the utmost importance in the future history of our country.

The influence which the Hollanders gained while they held the territories embraced in New York and New Jersey was exerted in behalf of the British Government, when the New Netherlands, as they were then called, were transferred to that power. In the long contest, running through a century, known as the French war, the Dutch settlers rendered important service to the British crown. The avenues and rivers which they had discovered penetrating the deep forest which overspread the country now became the routes by which the armies of France and England sought to seize and hold the strongholds of our land. The power which could hold Fort Stanwix, the present site of Rome, the carrying place between the Mohawk and the waters which flowed through Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence, would control the great interior plains of this continent. If France could have gained a foothold in this valley, the whole region drained by the St. Lawrence and the Mississippi reaching from the Alleghenies to the Rocky Mountains, would have been her’s. Our history, usages, government and laws would have been changed.

He who will study European events for a hundred years before our revolution will be struck as to the uncertainties, as to the result. For a century the destinies of this continent vibrated with the uncertainties of the battle-fields of Europe. The crisis of our fate was during the reign of Louis the Great, when that ambitious and powerful monarch sought to extend his dominion over two continents. When Marlborough won victories at Blenheim, Ramilies and Malblaquet, or when Prince Eugene swept the French from Italy and crippled the power of France, they did more than they dreamed of. They fought for the purpose of adjusting the balance of the nations of Europe; they shaped the customs, laws and conditions of a continent. But the war was not confined to the Old World.

Standing upon the spot where we now meet we could have seen a long successien of military expeditions made up of painted warriors, of disciplined soldiers, led by brave, adventurous men, pushing their way through deep forest paths or following, with their light vessels and frail canoes, the current of the Mohawk. But arms were not the only power relied upon to gain control.

The missionaries of France, with a religious zeal which outstripped the traders greed for gold, or the soldiers love for glory, traversed this continent far in advance of war or commerce. Seeking rather than shunning martyrdom; they were bold, untiring in their efforts to bring over the savage tribes to the religion to which they were devoted, and to the government to which they were attached. Many suffered tortures and martyrdom, in the interior of our State, and on the banks of the Mohawk. There are not in the world’s history pages of more dramatic interest than those which tell of the efforts of diplomacy, the zeal of religion, or the heroism in arms of this great contest, waged so many years in the wilds of this country. If I could picture all the events that have happened here, they would invest this valley with unfading interest. Its hillsides, its plains, its streams are instinct with interest to the mind of him who knows the story of the past. It should be familiar in every household. But the grand procession of armies did not stop with the extinction of Indian tribes, or of French claims.

When the revolutionary contest began, the very structure of our country made the State of New York the centre of the struggle, and the valleys of the Hudson and the Mohawk, the great avenues through which war swept in its desolating course. It was most destructive here, for it brought all the horrors of Indian warfare. It is said that there was not one home in all this region which did not suffer from the torch or the tomahawk. Fortunately it was inhabited by a brave, hardy and enduring race, trained to meet and overcome the hardships of life. The homes of their fathers had been destroyed in Europe by the armies of France. The Germans brought here by the British Government during the reign of Queen Anne were placed between the English settlements and the savage tribes, because, among other reasons, it was said that their trials and sufferings had fitted them to cope with all the dangers of border life.

When we have thus had passed in review before us the bands of painted savages, the missionary armed only with religious zeal, and shielded alone with the insignia of his sacred calling; the gallant armies of France and Britain; the hasty array of our Revolutionary fathers as they rallied in defence of their liberties, we have then only seen the forerunners of the greatest movement of the human race.

With our independence and the possession and the mastery of this great continent began a struggle unparalleled in the history of the world. Peaceful in its form, it has dwarfed in comparison the mightiest movements of war. Its influence upon the civilization of the people of the earth, has thrown into insignificance all that modern victories and invasions have done. During the past hundred years there has been a conflict between the nations of Europe on the one hand, and our broad land and political freedom on the other- It has been a contest for men and women—for those who could give us labor skill and strength. We count our captives by millions. Not prisoners of war, but prisoners of peace. Not torn by force, but won by the blessings which the God of nature has enabled us to hold out to them in our fertile hills and valleys and plains. What were the hordes of the Persians? What were the array of the crusaders? What the armies of earth’s greatest conquerors, in comparison with the march of the multitudes of immigrants from the Atlantic, States or from Europe who have moved through the valleys of the Hudson and the Mohawk, the very gateways of our country seeking homes in the interior of our continent? Ours is a double victory, unlike war, which kills or enchains. It draws our opponents to our side, and makes them co-workers in building up our greatness and glory. As the men of every civilized race are pouring through our valley, we see before us the mightiest elements which are shaping the future of the human race.

What are all the problems of European diplomacy compared with these movements passing before us? All their recent wars, in the changes they have made are insignificant in comparison with the power we have gained by immigration alone. That procession of events, beginning with Indian warfare, and stretching through three centuries of battles for the possession, and the wars for the independence of our country, grows in importance and magnitude; and we see no end to its column as we look down into the dim future. The courses of the Mohawk and Hudson will ever be its greatest avenues. For here commerce pours its richest streams, and immigration leads its greatest armies. We are bewildered when we try to trace out the growth of the future. Each rolling year adds more than a million; each passing day more than three thousand; each fleeting hour more than one hundred to our numbers. The tide will swell still higher in the future.

I was once asked by a distinguished Englishman if we did not make a mistake when we severed our relationship from the British people? I told him that we were sometimes sorry that we let them go; that our mere increase in twenty-five years would exceed in numbers the population of Great Britain; that the British Isles would make glorious States of our Union; and that we needed them as outposts on the European shores. I was able to say this under the circumstances without violation of courtesy, and it was pleasantly received by a man whose mind was large enough not to take offense at the remark, which served to place the progress of our country in a strong light,

I have thus hastily sketched the interest which attaches to the whole course of the Mohawk Valley, with the view of throwing light upon the question which I put at the outset. Have we who live amid these scenes been true to ourselves, and true to our forefathers, by making this history an animating influence to promote the public welfare; to instill honorable pride in family circles, or quicken the minds with generous thoughts, which otherwise would have been dull and cold and sordid? The characters of men depend upon the current of thoughts which are passing through their minds. If these are ennobling, the man is constantly lifted up; it matters not what his condition may be in other respects.

If these are debasing, he will constantly sink in the scale of morals and intellect; it matters not what wealth or learning he may have. What men think not only in the hours study, but at all times and places, in the field, in the workshop, in the counting-room, makes their characters, their intelligence and their virtue. Men’s thoughts form and shape them. And those which relate to the past are most ennobling. For they are unstained by prejudice, and unweakened by sentiments which incline to detract from merits of living actors. We instinctively think and speak well of the dead. This of itself makes us better men. We can so learn the, histories of this valley, that its scenes shall recall them as clearly and as vividly as the pictures upon our walls. We can so stamp them upon our minds that its hills and plains and streams will be instinct with the actions of those who have gone before us that man has done himself a wrong who can look down upon the Mohawk; and not see the drifting along its current the savage, the missionary, or the soldier of the past. He who dwells upon its traditions; who can point out where men died in the struggles of war, where men suffered martyrdom for their faith—the spot where some bold stand was taken for the the rights of man and the liberties of country; he who feels the full import of the great movements of commerce and of men passing through this valley, certainly has an education that will always lift him up mentally and morally. You can not imagine a people living here with all these events stamped upon their minds, ever present to give food for thought and reflection, who will not be animated by a zeal for the public welfare, by generous impulses, by a self-sacrificing devotion for honor, for religion, for country. There is no teaching so powerful as that which comes invested with the forms of nature. It is that which reaches and tells upon the young and the old, the learned and the unlearned alike. Imagine two men living in this valley, both familiar with all its features, one well informed and the other ignorant of its events; then tell me if you believe that they can be alike in their moral natures or their value as citizens. In view of what I have thus said we can see why history is so potent. We can now see the wisdom, and the mercy too, of that command which tells us to honor our fathers and our mothers, though for many years and through many generations they have slept in their graves.

There are some reasons why the history of New York is not as well-known to the American people as that of other States. It has not excited the interest which justly attaches to it. The first settlers were Hollanders. When the Dutch made their settlement on this continent they were superior to other European nations, in learning, in arts, in commerce, and in just views of civil and religious liberty. Our country is indebted to them for many of the best principles of our goverment. But their language is no longer spoken here. In-comers from other States and nations exceed their descendants in numbers, and many of the traditions and events of its colonial period have been lost. This is true also of the German settlers in the valley of the Mohawk. The settlers who came into our State after the revolution, brought with them the ideas and sentiments of the places from which they came, and which, for a long time, have been cherished with more zeal than has been shown for the history of the State, where they have made their homes. These things created an indifference to the honor of New York. So far from preserving what relates to its past, in many instances old monuments have been destroyed, and names obliterated, which, if they had been preserved, would have recalled to men’s minds the most important incidents in the progress of our country. Nothing could have been more unfortunate than the acts which changed the name of Fort Stanwix to that of Rome, and that of Fort Schuyler to Utica. The old names would have suggested the circumstances of the French and Revolutionary wars. Of themselves they would have educated our people, and would have turned their attention to facts which they ought to know, but which have been thrown into the shade by terms which mislead. The existing designations, with their absurd and incongruous associations, divert the mind from these honorable memories.

The time has come when the people of New York owe it to themselves and to their country to bring forward their records, to incite a just measure of State pride, and to elevate our standard of public and private virtue by the influence of our grand history.

This should be taught in our schools, discussed, in our journals and made the subject of public lectures and addresses. Monuments should be put up to mark the spots where battles were fought and victories won, which have shaped the destinies of our country. When this is done, our own citizens, and the multitudes who traverse our valley, will see that within its limits all forms of warfare—that of Indian barbarism, disciplined armies, and of naval power have occurred within its boundaries. These prove the truth of the remark of General Scott, “that the confluence of the Mohawk and the Hudson has ever been the strategic point in all the wars in which our country has been engaged with foreign powers.

This work of making the details of our history known and felt by our people should begin in the heart of our State, in the valley of the Mohawk. Associations should be formed to preserve records and traditions that will otherwise be lost. Its old churches, which date back to the existence of our government, should be held sacred. The minor incidents of personal adventure, of individual heroism, should be preserved, for these show the character of the men and times in which they occur.

In no other quarter were the rights of the people asserted against the crown more clearly, or at an earlier day. It is not certain if the blood shed in the Revolution commenced at the battle of Lexington, or when the sturdy Germans were beaten down and wounded while defending their liberty pole against Sir John Johnson and his party.

I have refrained from want of time from presenting many facts and incidents which would give more interest to my address than the general statements I have made. Mr. Simms, to whom we are deeply indebted for long-continued and zealous researches into the history of this valley, has frequently given to the public sketches and narratives of great value. I trust the time has come when he and others who have labored in the same direction, will receive the sympathy and applause to which they are entitled.

Shall this centennial year be made the occasion for organizing societies in this valley, with a view, among other things, to the erection of monuments at different points along the Mohawk? I do not urge this as a mere matter of sentiment, but because I believe they will promote material welfare as well as mental activity and moral elevation. For these are ever found in close relationship. This whole region is marked for its fertility. It abounds with the material for varied industry, and is filled with streams with abundant power to drive all forms of machinery. It is in the heart of a great State, close by the leading markets of our country, and with cheap transportation to those of the world. Many millions in search of homes and for places to pursue their varied industry have passed by all these. I believe if we had shown the same pride in our State that has been exhibited elsewhere; if the minds of our people had been quickened, and their patriotism kept bright and burning by the examples of our fathers, that the Mohawk valley today would show a larger measure of power and prosperity than now blesses it. These things make a system of education, in some respects more active and pervading than that of books and schools. Subtle in their influences, they are not easily described, but they are felt and seen in all the aspects of society. Many years ago Congress made a grant to put up a monument over the grave of Herkimer. Attempts have been made to have the Legislature of our own State to mark in some suitable way the battle field of Oriskany. At the last session of the Legislature, the senator from Otsego and other members of that body made efforts to have something done in these directions. For one, I am grateful to them for their patriotism and the interest they have shown in these subjects. They did their duty when we neglected ours. And yet I rejoice in their failure. This pious work should be done by the people of this valley. They should not wait for strangers to come in to honor their fathers. There would be little value in monuments put up by mere legislative action, and at the cost of the State or national treasury. We want on the part of the people the patriotism which prompts, the intelligence which directs, the liberality which constructs such memorials. We want the inspiring influence which springs from the very efforts to honor the characters of those who have gone before us.

We want that which will not only remind us of the glorious acts of the past, but which will incite them in the future. Will the descendants of the Hollanders in the county of Schenectady be indifferent to this subject? Are the men of German descent, living in Montgomery and Herkimer, willing to have the services and sacrifices of their fathers pass into oblivion? Does no honorable pride move them to let our countrymen know that their homes suffered beyond all others, through the Indian wars and revolutionary struggles? Will they not try to keep alive in the minds of their countrymen the fact that the battle of Oriskany, which was the first check given to the British power in the campaign of Burgoyne, was fought by their ancestors and that its shouts and war-cries were uttered in the German language? Have they less public spirit than the Germans who have lately come to our country, and who have put up a monument to Baron Steuben? By doing so they honored one whose relationships to them were comparatively remote. Is it not true that men born in the valley of the Mohawk neglect the graves of their fathers, and forget the battle fields which have been made wet with the blood of those of their own lineage? The county of Oneida bears the name of one of the conquering tribes of the Iroquois. Upon the banks of the upper Mohawk, which flows through its territory, stood Fort Stanwix and Fort Schuyler. The former was for a hundred years during the wars between France and England, and at the time of our national independence, one of the most important military positions in our country. Near by was fought the battle of Oriskany, which was a part of the contest at Saratoga which won our national independence.

It was my purpose to give more value to this address, and to fortify its positions by presenting many incidents of a nature to interest and convince. But my health has not allowed me to refer to the proper books and documents for this purpose. I have therefore been compelled to speak more in general terms than I intended . What I have said is also weakened by the fact that I have not been able to take up and follow out my subject continuously and with clearness.

In particular, I wished to speak at some length of Fort Stanwix, Fort Dayton and Fort Herkimer, but I am unable to do so. Much also could be said about the old church at German Flats. Built before the revolution, for the Germans of the Palatinates, it has associations with the great political and religious struggles of Europe and America. Standing upon the site of a fort still more ancient, for it was built at an early period of the French war, it was for a long time the outpost of the British power on this continent. It has been the scene of Indian warfare; of sudden and secret attack by stealthy savages; of sudden forays which swept away the crops and cattle of feeble settlements; of assaults by the French; of personal conflicts which mark contests on the outskirts of civilization. It was the stronghold of our fathers during the revolution. The missionary and the fur trader more than three hundred years ago floated by its position in bark canoes, and in these later days millions of men and women from our own country and from foreign lands, on canals or railroads, have passed by on their way to build up great cities and States in the hear t of our continent. There is no spot where the historian can place himself with more advantage when he wishes to review in his mind the progress of our country to greatness, than the Old Church at German Flats. Looking from this point his perspectives will be just; all facts will take their due proportions; local prejudices will not discolor his views, and he will be less liable here than elsewhere in falling into the common error of giving undue prominence to some events, while overlooking the full significance of others more important. I hope the subjects of local histories will be taken up by our fellow citizens of this region, and the facts relating to them brought out and made familiar to us all.

I said at the outset that I did not come here to-day merely to appeal to your imaginations, or only to take part in a holiday affair. I come to speak upon subjects which I deem of practical importance to my hearers. If I have succeeded in making myself understood, I am sure, if you will look into these subjects you will find that all history, all jurisprudence, all just reasonings, force us to the conclusion that not only does a Divine command, but that reason and justice call upon us to honor our ancestors, and that there is a great practical truth which concerns the welfare, the prosperity, and the power of all communities in the words, “Honor thy father and thy mother that thy days may be long in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.

See also: 
The History and Events that Led to the Founding of the United States by Courtlandt Parker 1876
Non-Revisionist Politically Incorrect History of America from the Ancient Authors Part 1
RISE OF CONSTITUTIONAL LIBERTY by Dr. Richard Salter Storrs July 4 1876
OUR NOBLE HERITAGE by Hon. George W. Curtis (1824 –1892)
AMERICAN CITIZENSHIP! by Colonel Henry A. Gildersleve July 4th 1876 NYC
The Wisdom and Love of God as Shown by His Creation by Noah Webster
Non-Revisionist Politically Incorrect History of the World With Biblical References Part 1
POLITICAL CONSTITUTIONS by Johannes Von Muller (1832)

OUR FLAG by Rev Henry H. Birkins July 4th 1876

betsy_ross_flag1OUR FLAG by Rev Henry H. Birkins 1834-1899.  Delivered At The Centennial Celebration, Washington Heights, New York City, July 4, 1876.

Mr. Chairman:—One of the most conspicuous and pleasing objects in our broad land to-day, is the starry emblem of freedom—our dear old flag. We see it, a centennial spectacle, floating everywhere, as we never saw it before, and as we never shall see it again. It is unfurled along our highways, it adorns our public and private dwellings, it floats over our temples of worship, our halls of learning and courts of justice, and waves as grandly and gracefully over the lowest cottage in the land, as over the proud dome of the capital itself. It is our flag, with sweet centennial memories clinging to every fold, our flag along whose stripes we may trace the triumphant march of one hundred years, and from whose stars we see the light of hope and liberty still flashing upon the nations.

AFBetsyross1776The origin of our flag is, to some extent, involved in mystery and controversy. It has been claimed by some that its stars and stripes were first taken from the shield of the Washington family, which was distinguished by colored lines and stars; and if this be so, it is not at all improbable, though by no means certain, that Washington himself may have suggested the peculiar form of the flag. The first distinctively American flag was unfurled to the breeze on the first day of January, 1776. It consisted of “seven white and seven red stripes,” and bore upon its front the “red and white crosses of St. George and St. Andrew,” and was called “The Great Union Flag.” This flag quickly displaced all other military devices, and became the battle-banner of the American Army. In 1777, however, it was greatly changed. The crosses were omitted and thirteen red and white stripes were used to denote the thirteen States, and thirteen stars were used to represent the union of those States. And our flag still retains its stars occasionally adding one to the number, and, as traitors know to their sorrow, it also still retains its stripes, well laid on. We have never found it necessary to ask true American citizens to respect and honor our flag. When Gen. Dix, on the 29th of January, 1861, penned those terse memorable words: “If any one attempts to haul down the American flag shoot him on the spot;” the loyal people of the nation said, “Amen. So let it be.

We do not wonder that our people, and especially our soldiers love the flag. It is to them both a history and a prophecy. No wonder that brave soldier as he fell on the field of battle said, “Boys, don’t wait for me; just open the folds of the old flag and let me see it once more before I die.

bald_eagle_head_and_american_flag1No wonder that Massachusetts soldier boy, dying in the gory streets of Baltimore, lifted up his glazing eyes to the flag and shouted, “All hail, the stars and the stripes!!!” Our flag is a power everywhere. One has justly said, “It is known, respected and feared round the entire globe. Wherever it goes, it is the recognized symbol of intelligence, equality, freedom and Christian civilization. Wherever it goes the immense power of this great Republic goes with it, and the hand that touches the honor of the flag, touches the honor of the Republic itself. On Spanish soil, a man entitled to the protection of our government was arrested and condemned to die. The American consul interceded for his life, but was told that the man must suffer death. The hour appointed for the execution came, and Spanish guns, gleaming in the sunlight, were ready for the work of death. At that critical moment the American consul took our flag, and folded its stars and stripes around the person of the doomed man, and then turning to the soldiers, said: “Men, remember that a single shot through that flag will be avenged by the entire power of the American Republic.” That shot was never fired. And that man, around whom the shadows of death were gathering, was saved by the stars and the stripes. Dear old flag! Thou art a power at home and abroad. Our fathers loved thee in thine infancy, one hundred years ago; our heroic dead loved thee, and we loved thee, and fondly clasp thee to our hearts today. All thy stars gleam like gems of beauty on thy brow, and all thy stripes beam upon the eye like bows of promise to the nation.

Wave on, thou peerless, matchless banner of the free! Wave on, over the army and the navy, over the land and the sea, over the cottage and the palace, over the school and the church, over the living and the dead; wave ever more, “O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

See also: 
Founders on the 2nd Amendment
THE AMERICAN FLAG! A Poem By Joseph Rodman Drake May 29, 1819
NO SLAVE BENEATH THE FLAG by George Lansing Taylor 1835-1903
OUR FLAG-THE PROUD EMBLEM OF THE REPUBLIC. by Gen. Ferdinand Claiborne Latrobe July 4th 1876
Once a Marine, always a Marine! Salute! Semper Fidelis!
Advice to Young People from Noah Webster Father of American Education
Resistance to Tyrants is Obedience to God
Why our Forefathers firmly believed that Freedom and Liberty came from God
SONG OF THE SOLDIERS! A Poem By Charles G. Halpine 1861-1865
THE OATH! By Thomas Buchanan Read 1822-1872
THE RISING, 1776! By Thomas Buchanan Read 1822-1872
THE BEACON FIRES OF LIBERTY by Hon. George Lear July 4, 1876
We The People Never Forget September 11, 2001


Morgan Dix3The Hand Of God In American History. A Discourse By Rev. Morgan Dix, D. D., Delivered At Trinity Church, New York, July 4th, 1876.

Glory be to God! and here, throughout the land, far and near, through all our homes, be peace, good will and love. As one family, as one people, as one nation, we keep the birthday of our rights, our liberty, our power and strength. Let us do this with eyes and hearts raised to the Fountain of all life, the Beginning of all glory and might; with words of praise and thanks to God who rules on high; for He is the living God and steadfast power, and His kingdom that which shall not be destroyed, and His dominion shall be even unto the end. Wherefore as He is our strength and hope, let all begin and all go on, first and ever, with glory to God Most High. There are great things to think about to-day; the growth of the people, unparalleled in history; the vastness of their empire, a wonder of the latter days; the bands by which the mighty frame is held together—so slight to the eye, so hard to break; the many races welded into one; the marvelous land, with its oceans on all sides, its lakes themselves like lesser oceans, its icebergs and glaciers, its torrid deserts, its mountain ranges and rich, fat valley land, its climates of all kinds, its rivers, which would have seemed of all but fabulous length, its wealth in all that rock, and earth, and water can supply; and then the people—active, able, full of enterprise and force, acting with the power of a myriad of giants, speaking one language, living under one flag, bound by common interests, and, as to-day, kindled by one common feeling of devotion, pride, joy, hope, sure there is enough to think about to-day, enough to fill the soul and almost make the head giddy. But let these things be spoken of elsewhere; let others dwell upon them. We have a definite share in the national celebration: let us not forget our part, which is to lift to God a great voice which He shall hear amid all the other voices of the hour. Why do we gather here? Is it to recount the praises of men and their mighty achievements? Is it to make display of our national greatness, to tell over our victories and conquests in divers scenes of conflict, to celebrate the names and acts of chieftains, statesmen, and rulers of the land, of brave and patient people who gave fortune, life, and sacred honor to the State, of any of those who deserve remembrance to-day? Let this be done elsewhere, as is right and fitting; let men stand up when it is convenient, and set oration and address do honor to the dead and the living, point the moral of our history, hold up the ideals of patriotism, virtue, and unselfish love of home and native land.

Morgan Dix2But we must be about our Father’s business; we have other words to speak, deeper, further-reaching; our work here is to offer praise and glory to God; to bless Him in His relations to the nation as its Lord and King, as Ruler and Governor, as Providence, law-giver, and Judge. Without God nothing of what we properly value to-day could have been. Without God there could have been no nation, nor nation’s birthday. It is He that hath made us and kept us one. The office of the Church is to bless and sanctify the nation’s feast day. She cannot be indifferent nor unmoved. We are citizens of the earthly house as well as of the heavenly. We act in that double capacity in praising God Almighty, while with our brethren we keep the feast. And oh! what ground for thankfulness to-day. Think of the mighty hand that hath led us and upheld us through these hundred years—what it has done for us—what that right hand of the Most High hath wrought I look back to the humble beginnings—to the poor little Colonists with their scant store, and their modest ambitions; think of their long-suffering patience, and also of their honorable resolve not to submit to oppression and injustice; remember the band of men who met together, just one hundred years ago, to sign the Declaration, how they did it—not, as popular legends tell us, with transports of enthusiasm and amid bell-ringing and general jubilation, but in secret session of Congress. With an awful sense of what it meant. With a vision of the gibbet and the axe before their eyes, and well aware of the toil, and blood, and grief that it must cost to maintain their manly attitude before the world. Think with what dread and sinking of heart, with what tears and partings, with what conflicts of spirit, and what doubts as to the duty of the hour, the foundations were laid; and let us have a tender heart toward the old fathers of the State, the men who took their lives in their hands, and so brought the new nation to the birth, and then amid what untold trials and sufferings they carried on their war! Think of the great hearts ready to break, of the starved and ragged armies with that mighty spirit under their hunger-worn ribs, more frequently retreating than advancing, wasted by sickly summer heat, and often in winter standing barefoot in snow; that squalid, sorrowful, anxious force working their sure way through cloud, and storm, and darkness to the victory, perfect and finished, at the end. It is touching to read the memorials of those days, and to think of all that has come since then; how we are entered into their labors, and are at peace because they went through all that; they sowed in tears and we reap in joy. So then let there be thanks to God for the past, out of which He has evoked the present grandeur of our State, and let us remember what we owe to those who went before, for a part of that debt is obvious; to imitate the virtues and return to the simple mind, the pure intention, the unselfish devotion to the public weal which marked the founders of the Republic. It is a far cry to those days, but there still shine the stars which guided them on their way, the light of heaven illuminating the earth, the bright beacons of honesty, truth, simplicity, sincerity, self-sacrifice, under which, as under an astrological sign, the little one was born. Pray heaven those holy lights of morality and public virtue may not, for us, already have utterly faded away. Surely it. is a marvelous thing to see how nations rise and grow; how they gather strength; how they climb to the meridian of their noonday light and glory; how they blaze awhile, invested with their fullest splendors at that point, and thence how they decline and rush downward into the evening, and the night, and the darkness of a long, dead sleep, whence none can awake any more. This history is not made without God. His hand is in it all. His decrees on nation and State are just, in perfect justice, as on each one of us men. And must it all be told over again in our case? Is there no averting the common doom? Must each people but repeat the monotonous history of those who went before? God only knows how long the course will be till all shall be accomplished. But certainly we, the citizens, may do something; we may live pure, honest, sober lives, for the love of country also, as well as for the love of Christ. We may, by taking good heed to ourselves, help to purify the whole nation, and so obtain a lengthening of our tranquility. We want much more of this temper; we need to feel that each man helps, in his own way, to save or to destroy his country. Every good man is a reason in God’s eyes why He should spare the nation and prolong its life; every bad man, in his vicious, selfish, evil life, is a reason why God should break up the whole system to which that worthless, miserable being belongs.

If we love our country with a true, real love we shall show it by contributing in ourselves to the sum of collective righteousness what it may be in our power, aided by God’s grace, to give. They are not true men who have no thanks to bring to the Lord this day. They are not true men who simply shout and cry, and make noisy demonstration, and speak great swelling words, without reason, or reflection, or any earnest thought to duty, to God, and the State. From neither class can any good come; not from the senselessly uproarious, not from the livid and gloomy children of discontent. They were thoughtful, patriotic, self-sacrificing men who built this great temple of civil and religious liberty. By such men only can it be kept in repair and made to stand for ages and ages. No kingdom of this world can last forever, yet many endure to a great age. The old mother country, England, in her present constitutional form, is more than 800 years old—a good age, a grand age, with, we trust and pray, many bright centuries to come hereafter, as good, as fair. Let us remember that for us, as for all people, length of days and long life and peace depend on the use we make of our gifts, on the fidelity with which we discharge our mission. And that is the reason why every one of us has, in part, his country’s life in his own hands. But I detain you from the duty of the hour. We meet to praise not man, but God; to praise Him with a reasonable and devout purpose; to bless him for our first century, for this day which He permits us to see, for our homes, our liberties, our peace, our place among the powers of the earth. It is all from him, whatever good we have, and to him let us ascribe the honor and the glory. And let us say, with them of old time.

Blessed art Thou, O Lord God of our fathers; and to be praised and exalted above all forever.

And Blessed is Thy glorious and holy name; and to be praised and exalted above all forever.

Blessed art Thou in the temple of Thine holy glory; and to be praised and glorified above all forever.

Blessed art Thou that beholdest the depths and sittest upon the cherubims; and to be praised and exalted above all forever.

Blessed art Thou in the glorious throne of thy kingdom; to be praised and glorified above all forever.

Blessed art Thou in the firmament of heaven; and above all to be praised and glorified forever.

Yea, let us bless the Most High, and praise and honor Him that liveth forever, whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and His kingdom is from generation to generation. And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing; and He doeth according to His will in the army of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth.

See also: The Wisdom and Love of God as Shown by His Creation by Noah Webster
Joseph Baldwin: Address 1892, to National Teachers Association in New York
True American Patriotism Defined by Hon. Curtis Guild and H. F. Kinnerney 1876
A PRAYER FOR THE NATION by Rev. William Bacon Stevens July 4, 1876
THE GRAND MISSION OF AMERICA by Joseph H. Twitchell, July 4, 1876
SCORN TO BE SLAVES by Dr. Joseph Warren 1741-1775

AMERICAN CITIZENSHIP! by Colonel Henry A. Gildersleve July 4th 1876 NYC

150thRegimentHenryAGildersleeveAMERICAN CITIZENSHIP! An Oration by Justice Colonel Henry Alger Gildersleeve (1840-1923) At The Centennial Celebration At Irving Hall, New York City, July 4th, 1876.

Fellow-citizens:—We are gathered here to-day from every quarter of this great metropolis, imbued with a common purpose and actuated by a common motive, which every individual present understands full well. Our ears are straining to hear and our minds are eager to receive the words of gratitude, patriotism and liberty—the themes to-day of 40,000,000 of freemen. Our hearts are swelling to greet these sentiments, and with shouts of applause to waft them on until they echo amid the white hills of the East and the mountains of the far West, or die away on the placid gulf of the South.

One hundred years of liberty and union! Not every year of peace and quiet, but if maintained sometimes by battle and blood so much the richer and dearer. Shall we not be pardoned on this day for manifestations of pride at the success of the Republic? The history of the world shows the people of every nation possess, instinctively, pride and love of country, and are we not justly proud of our country, which can point to more progress and more great achievement in a single century than have been vouchsafed to any other nation in a decade of centuries?

The love of country! Time cannot efface it,
Nor distance dim its heaven descended light;
Nor adverse fame nor fortune e’er deface it.
It dreads no tempest and it knows no night.

Who would not be an American citizen and claim a home in these United States? It has a home, bread and raiment for the family of every honest industrious man, no matter under what skies his eyes first saw the light of day, nor by what language he could be heard. Our lands are broad and free to all. The latch-string that opens to Uncle Sam’s domain hangs ever on the outside, and honest emigrants are always welcome within our borders. We try to-day to show our gratitude to the noble men who secured our independence and laid the foundation of our prosperity. What a pleasant task; but oh, how difficult! We have no memory rich with thankfulness that is not theirs. We have no praise rich with reverence that is not theirs. The world never saw more unselfish or truer patriots. No legislative hall ever held wiser statesmen. Our liberty is the fruit of their labor and sacrifice. At the mention of the name of the humblest of their numbers we now bow in humble adoration and thanksgiving. May this warm affection never cool in the hearts of the American people; may we never tire in studying the early history of our Republic and the characters and lives of the great men who forged for us so strong and well the pillars of liberty and equality. They are the boasted strength of our government and the envy of the other nations of the world. The past is a sure and safe guard by which to build hereafter. Our history assures us of the bright and lasting future if we but cling to the sheet anchor of our safety, the Constitution of the United States, and in harmonious accord remain loyal to our country’s flag—emblem of liberty, “flag of the free heart’s hope and home.” And when thrones shall have crumbled into dust, when scepters and diadems shall have long been forgotten, the flag of our Republic shall still wave on, and its stars, its stripes, its eagle shall still float in pride and strength and glory over the whole land; not a stripe erased or polluted, or a single star obscured.

See also:
NO SLAVE BENEATH THE FLAG by George Lansing Taylor 1835-1903
SCORN TO BE SLAVES by Dr. Joseph Warren 1741-1775
TRUE FREEDOM! A Poem by James Russell Lowell 1819-1891
Joseph Baldwin: Address 1892, to National Teachers Association in New York
PATRIOT SONS OF PATRIOT SIRES by Rev. Samuel Francis Smith 1808-1895
True American Patriotism Defined by Hon. Curtis Guild and H. F. Kinnerney 1876
OUR FLAG-THE PROUD EMBLEM OF THE REPUBLIC. by Gen. Ferdinand Claiborne Latrobe July 4th 1876
RISE OF CONSTITUTIONAL LIBERTY by Dr. Richard Salter Storrs July 4 1876
The Doctrine of Fascism, Fascism Defined by Benito Mussolini
Obama’s Nazi Youth Campaign Slogan “Forward”
The Failure of Marxism and Socialism

THE PERPETUITY OF THE REPUBLIC by Joseph Kidder July 4th 1876

The Perpetuity Of The Republic: An Address By Joseph Kidder, Esq, (1813 – 1901) Delivered At Manchester, N. H., July 4th, 1876.

Mr. President, Ladies And Gentlemen:—I will say to you that I shall keep you but a very brief space of time. It is natural for any people, on so great a day as the celebration of the one hundredth anniversary of the nation’s existence, to dwell largely upon reminiscences of the past, and glorify those whose fortune it was to shape the government that came into being through their agency. Especially is this true where national existence has proved to be in a particular sense a national blessing. Under such circumstances it would not be wise to check the outburst of patriotic hearts, or restrain in narrow compass the national joy that finds expression in any national form of jubilation. Hence this day, which rounds the full period of one hundred years in the history of the Republic, millions of happy people celebrate the deeds of honored fathers, and enjoy the blessings of a government to which history furnishes the world no parallel. Truly it is a day of which we may well be proud, and poets and orators may exhaust the English language in speaking words of praise on this memorable event. But while we rejoice that the events of the century have culminated in this grand work of human progress and freedom; and while we congratulate ourselves on our escape from the numerous perils along the pathway of the Republic, we are admonished that the past alone is no guarantee for the future. True it is that history cannot be recalled. It stands immutable as the rocks of the granite State. No fiat of power, no scheme of human ingenuity, can recall it. Call as we will, or lament as we may, there it is, written or unwritten, and it helps to contribute to the record of generations passed forever from the face of the earth. It is for us who live to treasure in our hearts the letters written for our instruction, and press forward to the future with earnest endeavors to increase the sum of human happiness in every proper way. In view of these sentiments we might well ask if we are assured that it is a fact that coming years will find the people of America still in possession of the enlightened government and the social and moral comforts that are now the glory of her people.

Do our hearts all exult in firm faith that the ship of state shall sail on over the unseen sea that heaves with calm and steady flow, or do they deem the shadows that here and there obscure the horizon proclaim that rocks and whirlpools and storms may sooner or later send her down to untold depths with all the precious freight of human souls on board?

On such a day as this I would not check the festivities of the hour, or cause a shadow to rest like a pall upon a single heart, but wisdom admonishes us that those only are wise who discern the evil in the distance and adopt measures to resist her fatal advances. Our Government was founded in patriotism and in a spirit of religious trust. It was not a venture depending upon chance for success or failure, but on the deep and earnest conviction of men.

With firm reliance upon divine providence for successful preservation in the hazardous enterprise in which they were about to engage, no step did they take or measure did they inaugurate without assuring themselves that the God of political freedom would crown their efforts with the divine approbation. And in this connection it might be proper to say that notwithstanding the perils of the past, there are some things upon which the continued peace and prosperity of our government must depend. Many of these I would discuss if I had time. I might speak of the school system of our country and the advantages which education would bring to us; also of patriotism, without which no people shall ever hold existence for any period of time. I might also allude to the purity of the ballot as absolutely essential to free and successful reform. I might also allude to that Christian integrity without which all onward progress is impossible. But these things I pass. I congratulate the multitude here assembled to-day on the future prospect of our country. The skies are bright; prosperity is cheering; and I believe that, while occasionally we have doubt and fear, occasionally look upon the dark side of life; yet I firmly believe that the perpetuity of this government is fixed and established so that it cannot be overturned, and so that, if we are true to the application of the principles on which our fathers founded these United States, we shall continue to be the bulwark of freedom.

See also:Joseph Baldwin: Address 1892, to National Teachers Association in New York
Why our Forefathers firmly believed that Freedom and Liberty came from God
Christianity and the Founding of the United States the Simple Truth
Founders & forefathers pledged their Sacred Honor, what did they mean?
PATRIOT SONS OF PATRIOT SIRES by Rev. Samuel Francis Smith 1808-1895
THE COST OF POPULAR LIBERTY by Brooks Adams July 4th 1876
Divine Heredity
Judge Isaac W Smith


Judge Isaac W SmithAn Address by Judge Isaac William Smith (1825 – 1898) Delivered At The Centennial Celebration At Manchester, N. H., July 4th, 1876.

My Fellow Countrymen: Our republic has reached a halting place in the grand march of nations, where the wheels of time seem for a moment to stop ere they commence again to turn in the perpetual circuit of the centuries. We pause this day in our journey as a nation to look back upon the past and gird ourselves anew for still further upward progress.

Shall we glance at the heroic age of New England, the eventful story of the Puritans? They were indeed burning and shining lights amid persecution, sealing with their lives their faith in an over-ruling God. At Delfthaven they knelt on the seashore, commending themselves with fervent prayer to the protection of heaven: friends, home, native land, they left behind them forever, and encountered the dangers of unknown seas in search of a place where they might worship the living God according to the dictates of conscience.

We admire the firm faith in which they met the horrors of Indian warfare, the privations of cold, disease and death, “lamenting that they did not live to see the glories of the faithful.” The story of the Mayflower and Plymouth Rock, of heroes more noble than Greek or Roman, of conflicts more sublime and victories more important than any recorded in history —is it not written in our hearts? And do we not contemplate this day with affectionate remembrance the debt of gratitude we owe to the men and women who laid so broad and deep the foundations of civic and religious liberty?

This day, the joyful shout “America is free!” spreads from state to state, from city to city, from house to house, till the whole land rings with the glad voice, and echo upon echo comes back from every mountain and hill-side, “America is free!” On our mountains and on the great plains of the West, forty millions of voices unite in sending from the shores of the Atlantic to those of the Pacific the songs of freedom. Shady groves resound with the merry voices of innocent children. Busy streets are filled with throngs of freemen. Eloquence portrays with glowing tongue and burning lips those struggles and triumphs in which the nation was born, and to-day stands forth a mighty one in the great family of governments. The early dawn was ushered in with ringing of bells and every demonstration of joy. It is celebrated by every class, society and organization, by civic processions, floral gatherings, orations, military reviews, each and all with the joy and enthusiasm which Americans only can feel. The going down of the sun will be the signal for the gathering of thousands upon thousands to close the festivities of the day amid the blazing of rockets and the glittering of fireworks, rivaling the stars in splendor and beauty.

We to-day look back through a period of one hundred years upon the men in congress assembled who proclaimed thirteen infant colonies a free and independent nation. Lexington, and Concord, and Bunker Hill had demonstrated that men could fight, and men could die in defence of liberty. The illustrious men who composed that memorable congress, in support of the Declaration of Independence ; “pledged their lives, their fortunes, their sacred honors”—their all. Lives and fortunes were sacrificed in its defence but not honor.

Scarcely three millions of people were scattered along the Atlantic coast from New Hampshire to Georgia—a narrow fringe of settlements hardly extending beyond the Alleghenies; while beyond the vast expanse of this mighty continent was an unknown wilderness—the abode of savages ready to press down upon the unguarded settlements with the arrow and tomahawk. Through seven long years war raged throughout the land. Men of the same blood and language faced each other in hostile array.

But darkness and doubts at length passed away, and day dawned upon the long night of the revolution. The roll of musketry and the clash of arms were hushed. To-day we have become a nation of forty-four millions. Westward the star of empire has taken its way, till cities mighty and influential have risen, flourishing on either seaboard and on the vast plains through which the “Fathers of “Waters ” cuts his way from the Great Lakes of the North to the Gulf that washes our Southern borders. “The busy town, the rural cottage, the lowing herd, the cheerful hearth, the village school, the rising spire, the solemn bell, the voice of prayer, and the hymn of praise, brighten and adorn American life and privileges.”

What mighty changes have these one hundred years witnessed! The seed of liberty sown by our fathers has germinated and flourished even in the monarchies of Europe. Napoleon made all tremble with his hostile legions. Forty centuries looked down on his conquering armies from the pyramids of Egypt. France, the scene of so many revolutions, has become enrolled in the list of republics. Other nations, catching the shouts of freemen, have compelled the loosening of the reins of power. Thrones that have stood firmly for ages have been made to tremble upon their foundations. Austria, the land of tyranny and oppression, has compelled her emperor to abdicate. The Pope, whose election was hailed by the whole civilized world as the harbinger of a better administration, was hardly seated upon his throne before he fled in disguise from his pontifical halls, and St. Peter’s and the Vatican resounded with the triumphal shouts of an awakened nation. Hungary struggled for independence as a nation, and practically achieved it, so that to-day it lives under laws enacted by its own parliament, and accepts the emperor of Austria as king. Russia has emancipated her serfs and taken vast strides in her progress as a nation. China is no longer a walled nation, shut Up from the rest of the world. With Japan she has opened her gates to the commerce of the world, and civilization has began to loosen the scales from the eyes of hundreds of millions of people in these two nations, whose origin as well as their knowledge is the arts and sciences, is lost in the dim ages of antiquity.

On the Western Continent we have in the war of 1812-15 asserted our right against England to travel the highways of the seas unmolested. The Saxons have conquered and dismembered Mexico. The most gigantic rebellion the world ever saw has been suppressed, and with it fell the institution of slavery. That foul blot upon the otherwise fair face of our constitution, less than a score of years ago seemed firmly and irreversibly fastened upon the body politic. So steadily was it entrenched behind constitutional guaranties that there seemed no way by which it could be cured; and hence it was endured. But God in his mysterious providence permitted those whose rights were thus protected by constitutional guaranties, to make war upon the government which protected them, and in the fratricidal struggle the shackles fell from the limbs of every slave. To-day the sun does not shine in all this mighty republic upon a single bondman. The same constitution and the same laws alike declare the equality of all men before the law without reference to previous condition of servitude, race or color.

In the physical world, the progress in the arts and sciences has surpassed any conception which we were able to form. California outshines the wealth of India. We traverse the ocean in ships propelled by steam. The vast expanse of our land is covered by a network of iron rails reaching out in every direction. The hourly rate of speed has increased from five miles to thirty, and even to sixty. The world has been girdled with the electric wire. It reposes in safety on the bed of the great deep. On the wings of the lightning it conveys from land to land and shore to shore every moment the intelligence of man’s thoughts and man’s actions. Each new year has opened up some new improvement or discovery in the world of inventions, which time fails me even to enumerate. And who shall say that a century hence the historian of that day will not be called upon to record the further discovery of wonders far surpassing any conception which we are able to form?

I should hardly be excused if I failed to mention our advance as a nation in the cause of education, but a glance only must suffice.

The men who settled New England had been schooled in adversity. They had a true estimate of human greatness and human power. They knew that knowledge is power. As fast as the forest was cleared the school was established. With the establishment of the common school system have come self reliance, intelligence, enterprise, till our sails whiten every sea, our commerce extends to the most distant ports, our fabrics complete successful with those of more favored lands; our glorious Union itself has withstood the assaults of foes without, and traitors within, and stands immovably founded upon the intelligence and wisdom of the people. Caesar was the hero of three hundred battles, the conqueror of three millions of people, one million of whom he slew in battle. But long after the influence of his deeds shall have ceased to be felt, will the wisdom of our fathers, through the schools and colleges of our land, move the unnumbered masses that shall come after us.

The foundation of prosperity is in an enlightened community. An ignorant people, though inheriting the most favored land on earth, soon sinks into insignificance. Our extended seacoast invites commerce with every clime. Our fertile valleys and prairies bring forth the fruits of the earth in rich abundance. Her numerous waterfalls and rivers have been harnessed to wheels that turn thousands and tens of thousands of spindles. Cities have sprung up like exhalations under the magic touch of the magician’s wand, and the hum of machinery rises out of the midst of a thrifty, industrious and happy people. The majestic plains and rivers of the West have collected adventurers from every part of the world. The country to-day exhibits to other nations the unexampled rise and prosperity of a free, self-governed and educated people. To the wisdom of our fathers we are indebted for this rich legacy. With what care should we cherish our institutions of learning, that those who come after us may have reason to bless their fathers as we bless ours .

Happily our fathers did not attempt the union of the church and state. It was no mercenary motive that led them to leave old England’s shores. Theirs was a strong and enduring love of God, a perfect faith in his promises; accordingly they hesitated not to sever the ties of kindred and nation, to find in the unbroken wilderness of New England a place to worship God “according to the dictates of their own consciences.” It does not excite our wonder, but our admiration—that every infant settlement had its sanctuary—the ten thousand church spires reaching upward toward heaven point with unerring accuracy to the source of our prosperity as a nation. Centuries to come will approve and applaud our fathers who worshipped in square pews, and the ministers who preached with subduing power from high pulpits.

Such was the first century of the Republic. It has been one of struggle, but one of prosperity. Upon us and our children devolves the privilege and duty of carrying the nation forward to still greater prosperity. Shall we be behind our fathers in declaring for intelligence as against ignorance; for honesty and ability in our rulers; and for religion against irreligion? Our backward look should be but an inspiration to future progress. As we stand to-day, in the presence of the fathers of the republic, may we receive, as men receive fife from God, the inspiration which animated them to do and to die.

“Thanks he to God alone
That our whole land is one.
As at her birth!
Echo the grand refrain,
From rocky peak to main,
That rent is every chain,
From south to north.”

See also:
Why our Forefathers firmly believed that Freedom and Liberty came from God
Christianity and the Founding of the United States the Simple Truth
Founders & forefathers pledged their Sacred Honor, what did they mean?
THE GRAND MISSION OF AMERICA by Joseph H. Twitchell, July 4, 1876
A PRAYER FOR THE NATION by Rev. William Bacon Stevens July 4, 1876
The Excellence of the Christian Religion by Noah Webster Published 1834 Part 1
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
Non-Revisionist Politically Incorrect History of the World With Biblical References Part 1
The Greatest Speech in American History (Give me Liberty or Give me Death)
The Practical Advance Of Human Freedom Under The Trumpet Call Made In 1776 by Charles F Adams
The Truth about the current political parties in America and their origins by Thomas Jefferson
PATRIOT SONS OF PATRIOT SIRES by Rev. Samuel Francis Smith 1808-1895
Joseph Baldwin: Address 1892, to National Teachers Association in New York
THE COST OF POPULAR LIBERTY by Brooks Adams July 4th 1876
Celtic Prayer of the Lorica or Breastplate prayer
The Relationship Between a Man and Woman
History of the Cross in America
Divine Heredity

A CENTENNIAL RETROSPECT. A Poem by Dr Fred A Palmer July 4th 1876

AmericanFlagAndCrossA CENTENNIAL RETROSPECT. A POEM BY DR. FRED. A. PALMER of Montmorenci, S.C. Delivered at the Centennial Celebration in Aiken, S.C. July 4th, 1876

A noble band of patriots with faces all aglow
Stood in the Halls of Congress one hundred years ago;
Stood side by side, as they had stood upon the battle-field,
When they compelled the troops of England’s King to yield.

The enemies of Liberty sat silent, pale and still
While these brave men prayed God to know and do his will;
It was an hour when Justice was trembling in the scales,
When God from man the future in tender mercy veils.

These brave men knew that they must act for children yet unborn,
They sealed the Nation’s destiny upon that glorious morn,
When each man pledged his all for Right, for Liberty and Peace,
Forever sacred to our hearts shall be such men as these.

Tis true they left a stain upon our banner fold,
But we have wiped it out with blood and paid for it in gold;
These patriots fought for Liberty, and pledged themselves to stand
For Freedom, Right, and Justice, a firm unbroken band.

But while they threw their own chains off, they bound in bonds more strong
The bands that held the colored man in misery and wrong;
But soon or late all wrong comes right, for such is God’s decree,
And in His own good time He set the black man free.

It was not some one favored State, North, South, East or West,
That gave the true brave signers of that Declaration bleat:
No; each State gave her patriots who bore their noble share,
And when the Nation’s work was done, each State had proud names there.

Let us clasp hands, to work as one, for all the Nation’s good
And stand together as one man, as once our fathers stood;
Behold, how short the time has been, but one brief hundred years,
To plant the tree of Liberty and water it with tears.

Brave men have fallen on the field, to guard that sacred tree,
To save it from all vandal hands our aim shall ever be;
Altho’ we still have many faults, our Nation yet is young;
And we will carry out the work which these brave men begun.

We live in freedom; let us clasp each other by the hand;
In love and unity abide, a firm, unbroken band;
We cannot live divided; the Union is secure;
God grant that while men live and love this Nation may endure.

See also: OUR FLAG-THE PROUD EMBLEM OF THE REPUBLIC. by Gen. Ferdinand Claiborne Latrobe July 4th 1876
THE GRAND MISSION OF AMERICA by Joseph H. Twitchell, July 4, 1876
COURAGE! A Poem by Bryan Waller Procter 1787-1874
A PETITION TO TIME: A Poem by Bryan Waller Procter 1787-1874
THE MIGHTY WORD “NO.” by Theodore L. Cuyler, 1822-1909
TRUE FREEDOM! A Poem by James Russell Lowell 1819-1891
AMERICA! A Poem by Bayard Taylor, July 4, 1876

OUR FLAG-THE PROUD EMBLEM OF THE REPUBLIC. by Gen. Ferdinand Claiborne Latrobe July 4th 1876

Ferdinand C. Latrobe III [1916-1987] & Katharine [1920-2003] - 1960OUR FLAG-THE PROUD EMBLEM OF THE REPUBLIC. by General Ferdinand Claiborne Latrobe (October 14, 1833 – January 13, 1911) served seven terms as the mayor of Baltimore, Maryland. A speech given in Maryland on Independence Day 1876

Gentlemen :—On behalf of the Commissioners of Harlem Park, I accept the beautiful flag which you have this day presented. Our country’s flag, the most fitting gift to be made on her one hundredth birthday. What recollections crowd upon us on this Fourth of July, 1876! One hundred years ago on this most blessed day, there assembled in Independence Hall, in the City of Philadelphia, a band of patriots, who bravely, fearlessly proclaimed to the world that immortal declaration, written by Jefferson, which created a new nation among the powers of the earth. A century has elapsed, and from those original thirteen States has grown this mighty confederation known as the United States of America. The flag thrown to the breeze in 1776 has withstood the battle and the storm; and now triumphantly waves over thirty-eight great States, and fifty millions of free and independent citizens. Based upon free institutions, free speech, free thought, and free schools, our Union rests upon an imperishable rock foundation, that only hardens with the test of a century. “What a triumph for Republican institutions.

latrobeThe birth of our country was not peaceful. One could suppose on reading the words of the declaration that the expression of such sentiments, such “self-evident truths,” would have brought forth shouts of gladness and congratulations from the enlightened nations of the world; but the greeting received was from mouths of shotted cannon, the rattling of steel ramrods, the sharpening of swords, and the whitening of the ocean with the sails of transports, bearing armed men across the sea to stamp out the bursting bud of liberty before it should bloom into the flower of eternal life.

During seven long years of trial and suffering the American patriots under the leadership of the immortal Washington, struggled for a free existence. At times the fortunes of the colonies were at so low an ebb, that the great leader himself almost despaired of final triumph, and contemplating a possibility of failure had determined to rally around him those who preferred death to submission, retreat to the fastnesses of the mountains in the interior, and there maintain a desperate struggle for liberty until the end. But the God of battles had willed it otherwise, the darkness of the storm was followed by the bursting light of the day of freedom, and the nation nursed in a cradle of blood and war for seven years after its birth, sprung into manhood in the triumph of victory in 1773.

Gen. Ferdinand C. LatrobeAnd now one hundred years have passed. We had our trials and troubles, wars, foreign and domestic, but the Providence that so tenderly watched over us in our infancy has not neglected us in our prime. To-day the Republic is at peace with all the world, our flag respected at home and abroad, our people prosperous and happy, and our example already liberalizing those very governments which looked with horror and dread at the growth of free institutions. And when another century rolls around, may future generations be as devoted to these great principles of freedom, and as determined to maintain them as the generations that have passed. And in 1976, as now, may the star spangled banner in triumph still wave, ” o’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.”

I accept in the name of the Commissioners of Harlem Park this beautiful flag, and assure you upon their part that it shall be cherished as it deserves. And when hereafter it floats from your tall staff, may the mothers of Baltimore, pointing their children to its gorgeous folds, teach them to love, honor and revere that starry banner, as the proud emblem of this great Republic!

NO SLAVE BENEATH THE FLAG by George Lansing Taylor 1835-1903
THE AMERICAN FLAG! A Poem By Joseph Rodman Drake May 29, 1819
NEW HAVEN CT, ONE HUNDRED YEARS AGO by Leonard Bacon July 4, 1876