Imágenes de páginas

with whips and thongs would I scourge him from the land. The contempt, the indignation, the abhorrence of the community, shall be our weapons of offence. Wherever he moves, he shall find no house to receive him—no table spread to nourish him-no welcome to cheer him. The dismal lot of the Roman exile shall be his. He shall be a wanderer, without roof, fire, or water. Men shall point at him in the streets, and on the highways:

'Sleep shall neither night nor day

Hang on his pent-house lid;
He shall live a man forbid.
Weary seven nights, nine times nine,
Shall he dwindle, peak, and pine.'

The villages, towns, and cities shall refuse to receive the monster; they shall vomit him forth, never again to disturb the repose of our community."

The grand aims of the Free Soil party are thus clearly stated in this address :

“ It is a mistake to say, as is often charged, that we seek to interfere, through Congress, with Slavery in the States, or in any way to direct the legislation of Congress upon subjects not within its jurisdiction. Our political aims, as well as our political duties, are coextensive with our political responsibilities. And since we at the North are responsible for Slavery, wherever it exists under

[ocr errors]

the jurisdiction of Congress, it is unpardonable in us not to exert every power we possess to enlist Congress against it.

Looking at details : f_“ We demand, first and foremost, the instant Repeal of the Fugitive Slave law.

“We demand the abolition of Slavery in the District of Columbia.

“ We demand the exercise by Congress, in all Territories, of its time honored power to prohibit Slavery.

“We demand of Congress to refuse to receive into the Union, any new Slave State.

“ We demand the abolition of the domestic slave-trade, so far as it can be constitutionally reached; but particularly on the high seas under the National Flag.

“ And, generally, we demand from the Federal Government the exercise of all its constitutional power to relieve itself from responsibility for Slavery.

“ And yet one thing further must be done. The Slave Power must be overturned; so that the Federal Government may be put openly, actively, and perpetually on the side of Freedom.”

In the conclusion of this speech Mr. Sumner points out, in language of surpassing beauty, the course of his own future political action, and states


the great cause which he would ever strive to maintain—the principles of Freedom.

“ To vindicate Freedom, and to oppose Slavery, so far as I might constitutionally—with earnestness, and yet, I trust, without any personal unkindness, on my part-has been the object near my heart. Would that I could impress upon all who now hear me something of the strength of my own conviction of the importance of this work ! Would that my voice, leaving this crowded hall to-night, could traverse the hills and valleys of New England, that it could run along the rivers and the lakes of my country, lighting in every humane heart a beacon-flame to arouse the slumberers throughout the land. In this cause I care not for the name by which I may be called. Let it be democrat, or 'loco-foco,' if you please. No man who is in earnest will hesitate on account of a name. I shall rejoice in any associates from any quarter, and shall ever be found with that party which most truly represents the principles of Freedom. Others may become indifferent to these principles, bartering them for political success, vain and short-lived, or forgetting the visions of youth in the dreams of age. Whenever I shall forget them, whenever I shall become indifferent to them, whenever I shall cease to be constant in maintaining them, through good report and evil report, in any future combinations of party, then may my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth, may my right hand forget its cunning !!!

We all know with what ability and faithfulness Mr. Sumner has vindicated those principles which have just been stated, during his past senatorial career. Every one knows that he has never yet flinched from his duty in this respect. Up to the very time when his blood was spilled upon the Senate Chamber, by the hand of brutal violence, he was ever true to the great principles of Peace, Justice, and Freedom.

[blocks in formation]


Elected to the United States Senate-Letter of Acceptance-Speeches

on the Iowa Railroad Bill-An extract-delivers his celebrated Speech in the Senate, entitled Freedom National, Slavery Sectional-passage quoted on Freedom of Speech-the Perorationremarks.

On the 24th of April, 1851, Mr. Sumner was elected by the Massachusetts Legislature to the office of United States Senator, as the successor of Daniel Webster. In accepting this honorable post he addressed the following patriotic and eloquent letter to the Legislature, which was read in the Senate by Hon. Henry Wilson, President, and in the House of Representatives by Hon. N. P. Banks, Speaker.



“I have received by the hands of the Secretary of the Commonwealth a certificate, that, by concurrent votes of the two branches of the Legislature, namely, by the Senate, on the 22d day of January, and by the House of Representatives, on the 24th day of April, I was duly elected, in con

« AnteriorContinuar »