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son who approached the front of my desk: I was
I so entirely absorbed, that I was not aware of his presence until I heard my name pronounced. As I looked up with pen in hand, I saw a tall man, whose countenance was not familiar, standing directly over me, and at the same moment caught these words: 'I have read your speech twice over, carefully; it is a libel on South Carolina, and Mr. Butler, who is a relative of mine.' While these words were still passing from his lips, he commenced a succession of blows with a heavy cane on my bare head, by the first of which I was stunned so as to lose my sight. I saw no longer my assailant, nor any other person or object in the
What I did afterwards was done almost unconsciously, acting under the instincts of selfdefence. With head already bent down, I rose from my seat--wrenching up my desk, which was screwed to the floor and then pressing forward, while my assailant continued his blows. I had no other consciousness until I found myself ten feet forward in front of my desk, lying on the floor of the Senate, with my bleeding head supported on the knee of a gentleman whom I soon recognized, by voice and manner, as Mr. Morgan, of New York. Other persons there were about me, offering me friendly assistance, but I did not recognize any of them. Others there were at a distance, looking on and offering no assistance, of whom I recognized only Mr. Douglas, of Illinois, Mr. Toombs, of Georgia, and I thought also my assailant standing between them. I was helped from the floor, and conducted into the lobby of the Senate, where I was placed upon a sofa. Of those who helped me here I have no recollection. As I entered the lobby, I recognized Mr. Slidell, of Louisiana, who retreated, but I recognized no one else until I felt a friendly grasp of the band, which seemed to come from Mr. Campbell, of Ohio. I have a vague impression that Mr. Bright, President of the Senate, spoke to me while I was on the floor of the lobby. I make this statement in answer to the interrogatory of the Committee, and offer it as presenting completely all my recollections of the assault and of the attending circumstances, whether immediately before or immediately after. I desire to add, that besides the words which I have given as uttered by my assailant, I have an indistinct recollection of the words old man;' but these are so enveloped in the mist which ensued from the first blow, that I am not sure whether they were uttered or not."
“On the cross-examination of Mr. Sumner, he stated that he was entirely without arms of any kind, and that he had no notice or warning of any kind, direct or indirect, of this assault.
“In answer to a cross-question, Mr. Sumner replied that what he had said of Mr. Butler was strictly responsive to Mr. Butler's speeches, and according to the usages of parliamentary debate.”
Messrs. Brooks and Keitt were severely censured by the House, and resigned their seats. May the presence of such Representatives no longer disgrace the Congress of these United States. Truth compels us to say, that men in an official capacity, in this enlightened age and free country, who thus resort to brute force, are only fit to be the representatives of uncivilized, unchristianised governments, where freedom of the cudgel, and not freedom of speech, is an established principle.
Mr. Sumner has suffered intensely from the effects of his wounds, and still continues at the time we write (October 7th, 1856), in a very critical condition. It is to be hoped that he may yet be able to resume his seat in the Senate, where his presence is much needed.
In concluding our comments on the Sumner 'Outrage, we must say that the cowardly attempt of Brooks to beat down freedom of speech, has done more to arouse the citizens of the Northern States, and to make them realize the inestimable value of human liberty, than any other event of the past twenty years. Large indignation meetings have been held in many cities and towns at the North,-in Boston, Cambridge, Worcester, Salem, Newburyport, Lowell, &c., in Massachusetts; Manchester, Concord, New Market, &c., in New Hampshire; Portland, Bangor, &c., in Maine; Burlington, Montpelier, &c., in Vermont; Hartford, New Haven, &c., in Connecticut; New York City, Brooklyn, Troy, Albany, Utica, Syracuse, Auburn, Rochester, Buffalo, Poughkeepsie, &c., in New York; Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati, &c., in Ohio ; Chicago, in Illinois, and many other places.
Such an assault as that committed upon Mr. Sumner, instead of suppressing the spirit of liberty, will only tend to infuse and circulate it more extensively. Brute violence cannot confine or destroy that glorious principle which glows in the hearts of freemen. Among the noblest sentiments that ever came from the lips of the eloquent Kossuth, were those which he uttered in thrilling
, tones, when standing on Bunker Hill, and speaking of the gushing fountain of liberty. He said: “ ITS WATERS WILL FLOW; EVERY NEW DROP OF MAR
DESPOTS MAY DAM ITS FLOOD, BUT NEVER STOP IT. THE HIGHER ITS DAM, THE HIGHER THE TIDE; IT WILL OVERFLOW, BREAK THROUGH."
TYR BLOOD WILL INCREASE THE TIDE.
Oratorical character of Mr. Sumner-his person-his delivery-his
voice—his intellect—his learning-his imagination, &c.—his love of freedom--his style of composition—compared to Fisher Ames -concluding remarks.
WE proceed to delineate the oratorical character of Mr. Sumner-to mention some of the grand and prominent qualities of his sweet, persuasive eloquence. Possessing most of those high characteristics which are requisite in the formation of a natural orator, he is one of the most graceful and accomplished of our public speakers.
In the first place, he is favored with a noble, commanding person, every way well-proportioned, with a dignified countenance and attractive eyes,
, indicative of intelligence and sensibility. When excited in debate, his eye brightens and becomes almost radiant with what is passing within.* What force does the beaming, piercing eye of an accomplished orator add to his eloquent effusions ! Chatham and Erskine are illustrious examples of
* As the countenance is the image of the mind, so are the eyes the informers as to what is going on within it.--CIOERO.