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off, fought with his stumps, and even with his teeth. Let us borrow from the example of the slaveholders themselves, who are united and uncompromising in their unholy cause. Let us struggle for Freedom as earnestly as they struggle for Slavery. Let us rally under our white pavilion, resplendent with the trophies of Justice, Freedom, and Humanity, as enthusiastically as they troop together beneath their black flag, pictured over with whips, chains, and manacles."
Should not such language stir up every freeman of the North to contend against an evil which has so long tarnished this Republic, and disgraced the name of Christian America ? Shall we of the North tamely suffer the slave power to encroach and trample upon us, or shall we arise, and with united voice declare of that dark ocean of evil whose flood tide has been impelled over free soil, Thus far shalt thou come, but no farther; and here shall thy proud waves be stayed ? Freemen of the North, it is for you to answer this momentous question. Awake, then, and declare, in fearless and determined tones, that the soil of that portion of our country which has not yet been sullied by slavery, shall be FREE FOREVER.
Delivers a Speech in a Mass Convention at Worcester, Massachu
setts-extracts-delivers an address before the American Peace Society in Boston-adınirable passages quoted from this effortremarks, &c.
In a Mass Convention at Worcester, Mass., June 28, 1848, Mr. Sumner made an able speech, For union among men of all parties against the Slave power and the extension of Slavery, in which he says:
“As I reflect upon the transactions in which we are now engaged, I am reminded of an incident in French history. It was late in the night, at Versailles, that a courtier of Louis XVI., penetrating the bed-chamber of his master, and arousing him from his slumbers, communicated to him the intelligence—big with gigantic destinies—that the people of Paris, smarting under wrong and falsehood, had risen in their might, and, after a severe contest with the hireling troops, destroyed the Bastile. The unhappy monarch, turning upon his couch, said, “It is an insurrection. “No, Sire,' was the reply of the honest courtier, “it is a revolution.' And such is our movement to-day. It is a REVOLUTION—not beginning with the destruction of a Bastile, but destined to end only with the overthrow of a tyranny, differing little in hardship and audacity from that which sustained the Bastile of France-I mean the Slave Power of the United States. Let not people start at this similitude. I intend no unkindness to individual slaveholders, many of whom are doubtless humane and honest. And such was Louis XVI.; and yet he sustained the Bastile, with the untold horrors of its dungeons, where human beings were thrust into companionship with toads and rats.
“ By the Slave Power, I understand that combination of persons, or, perhaps, of politicians, whose animating principle is the perpetuation and extension of Slavery, and the advancement of slaveholders. That such combination exists, will be apparent from a review of our history. It shows itself, in the mildest and perhaps the least offensive form, in the undue proportion of offices under the Federal Constitution, which has been held by slaveholders. It is still worse apparent in the succession of acts by which the Federal Government has been prostituted to the cause of Slavery. Among the most important of these is the Missouri Compromise, the Annexation of Texas, and the War with Mexico. Mindful of the
sanctions, which Slavery derived under the Constitution—from the Missouri Compromise of the fraud and iniquity of the Annexation of Texasand of the great crime of waging an unnecessary and unjust war with Mexico—of the mothers, wives, and sisters, compelled to mourn sons, husbands, and brothers, untimely slain,—as these things, dark, dismal, atrocious, rise to the mind, may we not brand their author, the Slave Power, as a tyranny hardly less hateful than that which sustained the Bastile ? /
“ This combination is unknown to the Constitution; nay, it exists in defiance of the spirit of that instrument, and of the recorded opinions of its founders. The Constitution was the crowning labor of the authors of the Declaration of Independence. It was established to perpetuate, in the form of an organic law, those rights which the Declaration had promulgated, and which the sword of Washington had secured—We hold these truths to be self-evident-that all men are created equal, that they are endowed with certain inalienable rights,—that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.' Such are the emphatic words our country took upon its lips, when it first claimed its place among the nations of the earth. These were its baptismal vows. And the preamble of the Constitution renews them, when it declares its objects to be, among other things, to establish justice, to promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.' Mark, it is not to establish injustice—not to promote the welfare of a class, or a few slaveholders, but the general welfare; not to foster the curse of slavery, but to secure the blessings of liberty. And the declared opinions of the fathers were all in harmony with these instruments. “I can only say,' said Washington, that there is not a man living, who wishes more sincerely than I do to see a plan adopted for the abolition of slavery; but there is only one proper and effectual mode by which it can be accomplished, and that is by legislative authority; and this, as far as my suffrage will go, shall not be wanting.' Patrick Henry, while confessing that he was a master of slaves, said, “I will not, I cannot justify it. However culpable my conduct, I will so far pay my devoir to virtue, as to own the excellence and rectitude of her precepts, and lament my want of conformity to them. I believe a time will come, when an opportunity will be offered to abolish this lamentable evil.' And Franklin, as President of the earliest Abolition Society of the country, signed a petition to the first Congress, in which he declared that he considered himself bound to use all justifiable endeavors to loosen the bands of slavery, and pro