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indispensible. A long series of insults and injuries on the part of Great Britain---the seizure and confiscation of our ships and cargoes; the impressing of our seamen, under circumstances of the most irritating description; and the adoption of numerous measures to the injury of our interests—had fully prepared the public mind in the United States, with the exception of a small minority, to enter upon this war with zeal and enthusiasm. With occasional reverses, general success attended
arms in every direction. On land and on sea, the American eagle led to victory. The combatants were worthy of each other. Of the same original stock—of the same stern, unyielding material—their contests were bloody and destructive in the extreme. But the younger nation, inspirited by a sense of wrongs endured, and of the justness of its cause, bore away the palm, and plucked from the brow of its more aged competitor many a laurel yet green from the ensanguined fields of Europe. In scores of hotly-contested battles, the British lion, unused as it was to cower before a foe, was compelled to “lick the dust” in defeat. At York, at Chippewa, at Fort Erie, at Lundy's Lane, at New Orleans, on Lake Champlain, on Lake Erie, on the broad ocean, Great Britain and the world were taught lessons of American valor, skill, and energy, which ages will not obliterate.
This war, though prosecuted at the expense of many valuable lives, and of a vast public debt, was,
unquestionably, highly beneficial to the United States. It convinced all doubters that our government was abundantly able to resent aggressions, and to maintain its rights against the assaults of any nation on earth. . This reputation has been of great service in protecting our commerce, and commanding respect for our flag, throughout the world. But the chief benefit of the war was the development of our internal resources, which, after all, form the great fountain of the wealth, strength, and permanence of a nation. Deprived by the embargo, the non-intercourse act, and the ensuing hostilities, of all foreign importation of goods, the American people were compelled to supply themselves by their own industry and ingenuity, with those articles for which they had always before been dependent on their transatlantic neighbors. Thus was laid the foundation of that system of domestic manufactures which is destined to make the United States the greatest productive mart among men, and to bring into its lap the wealth of the world.
MR. ADAMS' ARRIVAL AT ST. PETERSBURG-HIS LETTERS TO HIS
SON ON THE BIBLE-HIS RELIGIOUS OPINIONS-RUSSIA OF-
STATES-PROCEEDS TO GHENT TO NEGOTIATE FOR PEACE
VISITS PARIS-APPOINTED MINISTER AT ST. JAMES ARRIVES
Mr. Adams arrived at St. Petersburg, as Minister Plenipotentiary from the United States, in the autumn of 1809. Twenty-eight years before, while a lad of fourteen, he was at the same place, as private secretary to Mr. Dana, the American Minister. The
pronising boy returned to the northern capital a mature man, ripe in experience, wisdom, patriotism, and prepared to serve his country in the highest walks of diplomacy. So truly had the far-seeing Washington prophesied in 1795:-“I shall be much mistaken, if, in as short a time as can well be expected, he is not found at the head of the diplomatic corps, be the government administered by whomsoever the people may choose !"
The United States, though but little known in Russia at that period, was still looked upon with favor, as a nation destined, in due time, to exert a
great influence upon the affairs of the world. Mr. Adams was received with marked respect at the Court of St. Petersburg. His familiarity with the French and German languages—the former the diplomatic language of Europe—his literary acquirements, his perfect knowledge of the political relations of the civilized world, his plain appearance, and republican simplicity of manners, in the midst of the gorgeous embassies of other nations, enabled him to make a striking and favorable impression on the Emperor Alexander and his Court. The Emperor, charmed by his varied qualities, admitted him to terms of personal intimacy seldom granted to the most favored individuals.
During his residence in Russia, the death of Judge Cushing caused a vacancy on the bench of the Supreme Court of the United States. President Madison nominated Mr. Adams to the distinguished office. The nomination was confirmed by the Senate, but he declined its acceptance.
A circumstance occurred at this time, which attracted the attention of Mr. Adams. The Russian Minister of the Interior, then advanced in years, having received many valuable presents while in office, became troubled with scruples of conscience, in regard to the disposal he should make of them. He at length calculated the value of all his gifts, and paid the sum into the imperial treasury. This transaction made a deep impression on Mr. Adams, and probably led him to the
resolution of never accepting gifts. In order to act with that freedom of bias which he deemed indispen. sable to the faithful discharge of public duty, he endeavored to avoid, as far as possible, laying himself under obligations to any man. When a certain bookseller once sent him an elegant copy of the Scriptures, he kept the book, but returned its full equivalent in money.
While sojourning at St. Petersburg, Mr. Adams wrote a series of letters to a son at school in Massachusetts, on the value of the Bible, and the importance of its daily perusal. Since his decease they have been published in a volume, entitled “Letters of John Quincy Adams to his son, on the Bible and its teachings.” “Their purpose is the inculcation of a love and reverence for the Holy Scriptures, and a delight in their perusal and study. Throughout his long life, Mr. Adams was himself a daily and devout reader of the Scriptures, and delighted in comparing and considering them in the various languages with which he was familiar, hoping thereby to acquire a nicer and clearer appreciation of their meaning. The Bible was emphatically his counsel and monitor through life, and the fruits of its guidance are seen in the unsullied character which he bore, through the turbid waters of political contention, to his final earthly rest. Though long and fiercely opposed and contemned in life, he left no man behind him who would wish to fix a stain on the name he has inscribed so high on the roll of his