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J t\ SPEECH OF HENRY CLAY; DELIVERED AT THE GREAT BARBECUE AT LEXINGTON, (KENTUCKY,) June 1842. 9, ' T;' In reply to a very eloquent and complimentary address, with a toast from the Hon. Robertson, Clay President of George the Meeting, Mr. arose and spoke as follows was given my : to throw into my voice, its As I cannot do that, I hope I shall be excused for such a use of my lungs as is practicable and not inconsistent aid, and to loudest thunders. with the preservation of my health. And I feel that it is our first duty to express our obligations to a kind and bountiful Providence, for the copious and genial showers with which he has just blessed our land refreshment of which it stood much in need. — For one, I offer to Him my humble and 1 The inconvenience sum of good which very slight, to us, on while the these timely rains will very great and encouraging. Fellow-citizens, I find myself now in a our countryman, Franklin, to bring down the lightning from Heaven. To enable me to be heard by this immense multitude, I should have to invoke to thanks. this festive occasion, is produce : Mr. President, Ladies and Gentlemen It ful duti. situation is somewhat like one in which I was a few years ago when travelling through the State of Indiana, from which placed my friend (Mr. Rariden) near me comes.— stopped at a village containing some four or five hundred inhabitants, and I had scarcely alighted before I found myself surI rounded in the bar-room by every adult nmle After a while, I observed a group consulting together in one corner of the room, and shortly after, I was diffidently approached by one of them, a tall, lank, lean, but sedate and sober looking person, with a long face and high cheek bones, who, addressing me, said he was commissioned by his neighbors to request that I resident of the place. — Why, my would say a few words to them. good friend, said I, I should be very happy to do any thing gratifying to yourself and neighbors, but 1 am very much fatigued and hungry and thirsty, and I do not think the I occasion is exactly suitable for a speech wish you would excuse me to your triends. Well, says he, Mr. Clay, I confess I thought so myself, especially as we have no wine to offer you to drink Now if the worthy citizen of Indiana was right in supposing that a glass of wine was a necessary preliminary and precedent condition to the delivery of a speech, you have no just right to expect one from me at this time for during the sumptuous repast from which we have just risen, you offered me nothing to drink but cold water excellent water, it is true, from the classic fountain of our lamented friend, Mr. Maxwell, which has so often regaled us on celebrations of our [Great laughter.] great anniversary. I protest against any inference of my being inimical to the Temperance Cause. On the contrary, I think it an admirable cause that has done great good, and will continue to do good as long as legal coercion is not employed, and it rests exclusively upon persuasion and its own intrinsic ; ! ; — merits. have a great and growing repugnance speaking in the open air to a large assemblage. But whilst the faculty of speech remains to me, I can never feel that repugnance, never feel other than grateful sensations, in making my acknowledgments under such circumstances as those which have brought us together. Not that I am so presumptuous as to believe that I have been the occaI to sion solely of collecting this vast multitude. the inducements, I cannot help Among thinking that the my fat white virgin heifer of Mr. Berryman, that cost $600, which has just been served up, and the other good things which have been so liberally spread before us, exerted some influence in friend swelling this unprecedentedly large meeting. [Great laughter.] I cannot but feel, Mr. President, in offering my respectful honors done me, acknowledgments in the for the address and in the eloquent which you have just delivered, sentiment with which you concluded it, that your warm partiality, and the fervent friendship which has so long existed between us, ; and my neighbors and prompted an exaggerated description, in too giowing colors, of my public services and my poor abilities. kindness of the friends around me, have opportunity to present my whole people of Kentucky, for all the high honors and distinguished favors which I have received, during a long residence with them, at their hands; from the liberal patronage which I have received from them in my professional I seize the heartfelt thanks to the pursuit ; eminent for the places me in which reach ; for the generous and unbounded confidence which they have bestowed upon me, at all for the gallant and unswerving fideltimes ity and attachment with which they stood by me, throughout all the trials and vicissitudes of an eventful and arduous life ; and above all, for the scornful indignation with which they repelled an infamous calumny directed against my name and fame at a momentous period of my public career. In recalling to our memory the circumstances of that period, one cannot but be filled with astonishment at the indefatigability with which the calumny was propagated and the zealous partisan use to which it was applied, not only without evidence, but in the face Under of a full and complete refutation. whatever deception, delusion or ignorance, with you, my it was received elsewhere, friends and neighbors, and with the good people of Kentucky, it received no countenance ; but in proportion to the venom and malevolence of its circulation was the vigor and magnanimity with which I was generUpheld by a consciousously supported. ness of the injustice of the charge, I should have borne myself with becoming fortitude, if I had been abandoned by you as I was by so large a portion of my countrymen but to have been sustained and vindicated as I was by the people of they have put me, or enabled to ; ; my own State, by you who know me best and whom 1 had so many reasons to love and esteem, greatly cheered and encouraged me in my onward progress. Eternal gratitude and thanks are due from me. I thank you, my friends and fellow-citizens, for your distinguished and enthusiasand for the tic reception of me this day excellence and abundance of the Barbecue ; that has been ment. And I provided for our entertainthank, from the bottom of my — heart, my fair countrywomen for honoring and gracing and adding brilliancy to this occasion by their numerous attendance. If the delicacy and refinement of their sex will not allow them to mix in the rougher human we may be sure that whenever, by their presence their smiles and approbation are bestowed, it is no ordinary scenes of life, That presence is always an occurrence. absolute guaranty of order, decorum and take the greatest pleasure in I respect. bearing testimony to their value and their virtue. I have ever found in them true and steadfast friends generously sympathizing in distress, and, by their courageous fortitude in bearing themselves, encouraged us to imitate their example. remember how, as fully aid And we all in 1840, they know and can power- a great and good cause, without the propriety or dignity any departure from of their sex. In looking back upon my origin and progress through life, I have great reasons My father died in 1781, to be thankful. leaving me an infant of too tender years to retain any recollection of his smiles or endearments, my surviving parent removed to this State in 1792, leaving me, a boy of fifteen years of age, in the office of the High Court of Chancery, in the City of Rich- mond. without a guardian, without pecuniary means of support, to steer my course as I might or could. A neglected education was improved by my own irregular exertions, without the benefit of systematic instruction. I studied law principally in the of fice of a lamented friend, the late Governor Brooke, then Attorney General of Virginia, and also under the auspices of the venerable and lamented Chancellor Wythe, I for whom I had acted as an amanuensis. obtained a license to practice in the profession from the Judges of the Court of Appeals of Virginia, and established myself in Lexington in 1797, without patrons, without the favor or countenance of the great or opulent, without the means of paying my weekly board, and in the midst of a Bar uncommonly distinguished by its members. I remember how comfortably I thought I should be, if I could make £100 Virginia money per year, and with what delight I received the first fifteen shilling fee. hopes were more than realized. I My immedi- ately rushed into a successful and lucrative practice. Afterwards, when I was absent from the County of Fayette, at the Olympian Springs, without my knowledge or previous consent, 1 was brought forward as a candidate and elected to the General Assembly of this State. I served in that body several years, and was then transferred to the Senate, and afterwards to the House of Reprentatives I will not now dwell of the United States. on the subsequent events of my political life, or enumerate the offices which I have During my public career, I have filled. had bitter, implacable, reckless enemies. But if I have been the object of misrepresentation and unmerited calumny, no man has been beloved or honored by more devoI have ted, faithful and enthusiastic friends. no reproaches none to make towards my country, which has distinguished and elevated me far beyond what I had any right to expect. I forgive my enemies, and hope they may live to obtain the forgiveness of — their own — hearts. would neither be fitting, nor is it my purpose to pass judgment on all the acts of my public life but I hope I shall be excused for one or two observations, which the It ; occasion appears to me to authorize. I never but once changed my opinion on any great measure of National policy, or on any great principle of construction of In early life, the National Constitution. on deliberate consideration, I adopted the principles of interpreting the Federal Constitution which had been so ably developed and enforced by Mr. Madison, in his memorable report to the Virginia legislature, and to them, as I understood them, I have conUpon the question com. stantly adhered. ing up in the Senate of the United States to recharter the first Bank of the United States thirty years ago, I opposed the recharter upon convictions which I honestly The experience of the War, entertained. which shortly followed, the condition into which the currency of the country was thrown, without a Bank, and I may now and more disastrous experience, me I was wrong. I publicly stated to my constituents, in a speech in Lexington, (that which I had made in the House of Representatives of the United States not add, later convinced — — having been reported,) my reasons for that change, and they are preserved in the archives of the country. cord ; and I am and hereafter by I appeal to that willing to be judged re- now their validity. I do not advert to the fact of this solitary instance of change of opinion as implying any personal merit, but because it is a fact. I will, however, say that I think it very perilous to the utility of any public man to make frequent changes of opinion, or any change, but upon grounds so suffi- cient and palpable that the public can clear- and approve them. If we could look through a window into the human breast, and there discover the causes which lead to changes of opinion, they might be made without hazard. But as it is impossible to penetrate the human heart, and distinguish between the sinister and honest motives which prompt it, any public man that changes- his opinion, once deliberately formed and promulgated, tinder other circumstances than those which I have stated, draws around him distrusts, impairs the public confidence, and lessens his capacity to serve his country. I will take this occasion now to say, that I am and have been long satisfied, that it would have been wiser and more politic in me to have declined accepting the office of Secretary of State in 1825. Not that my motives were not as pure and patriotic as ever carried any man into public office ly see not that the calumny which was applied to the fact was not as gross and as unfounded as any that was ever propagated. [Here somebody cried out that Mr. Carter Beverly, who had been made the organ of announcing it, had recently borne testimony to its being unfounded. Mr. Clay said it was true that he had voluntarily borne such testimony. But with great earnestness and emphasis, Mr. Clay said, I want no testimony here here here (repeatedly touching his heart, amidst tre- mendous cheers) — — : — here is the best of all witinnocence.] Not that valued friends and highly esteemed opponents did not unite in urging my acceptance of the office not that the administration of Mr. Adams will not, I sincerely believe, advantageously compare with that of any of his predecessors, in economy, purity, prudence and wisdom not that nesses of my ; ; Mr. Adams was himself wanting in any of those high qualifications and upright and patriotic intentions which were suited to the Of that extraordinary man, of rare and varied attainments, whatever diversity of opinion may exist as to his recent course in the House of Representatives, (and candor obliges me to say that there are some things in it which I deeply regret,) it is with no less truth than pleasure that I declare, that during the whole period of hia administration, annoyed, assailed and assaulted as it was, no man could have shown a more devoted attachment to the Union and all its great interests a more ardent desire faithfully to discharge his whole duty, or brought to his aid more useful experience and knowledge than he did. 1 never office. ; transacted business with >any man in my with more ease, satisfaction and advantage than I did with that most able and indefatigable gentleman, as President of the life United States. And I will add that more harmony never prevailed in any Cabinet than in his. But my error, in accepting the office, arose out of my underrating the power of detraction and the force of ignorance, and abiding, with too sure a confidence in the conscious integrity and uprightness of my own motives. Of that ignorance I had a remarkable and laughable example on an occasion which I will relate. I was travelling, was Spottsylto Washwith some young in 1829, through, I believe vania in Virginia, on ington, in company We my it return halted at night at a tavern, kept by an aged gentleman, who, I quickly perceived, from the disorder and confusion which reigned, had not the happiness to have a wife. After a hurried and bad supper, the old gentleman sat down by me, and without hearing my name, but understand, ing that I was from Kentucky, remarked that he had four sons in that State, and that he was very sorry they were divided in politics, two being for Adams and two for Jackson ; he wished they were all for Jackson. Why ? I asked him. Because, he said, that fellow Clay, and Adams, had cheated Jackson out of the Presidency. Have you ever seen any evidence, my old friend, said I, of that ? No, he replied, none, and he wanted to see none. But, I observed, looking him directly and steadily in the friends. — face, suppose Mr. Clay were to come here and assure you upon his honor, that it was ail a vile calumny, and not a word of truth No, replied in it, would you believe him ? the old gentleman promptly and emphatically. I said to him, in conclusion, will you be good enough to show me to bed, and bid him good night. The next morning, having in the interval learnt my name, he came to me full of apologies, but I at once put him at his ease, by assuring him that I did not feel in the slightest degree fended with him. hurt or of- Mr. President, I have been accused of ambition, often accused of ambition. I believe, however, that my accusers will be generally found to be political opponents, or the friends of aspirants in whose way I was supposed to stand, and it was thought therefore necessary to shove me aside. I defy my enemies to point out any act or instance of my life, in which I have sought the attainment of office by dishonorable or unworthy means. Did I display inordinate ambition when, under the administration of Mr. Madison, I declined a foreign mission of the first grade, and an Executive Department, both of which he successively kindly tendered to me ? When, under that of his successor, Mr. Monroe, I was first importuned (as no one knows better than that sterling now old patriot, Jonathan Roberts, tell us, with expulsion from an office which was never filled with more honesty and uprightness, because he declines to be a servile instrument,) to accept a Secretaryship, and was afterwards offered a carte blanche of all the foreign missions 1 At the epoch of the election of 1825, I believe no one doubted at Washington, that, if I had felt it my duty to vote for Gen. Jackson, he would have invited me to take charge of a Department. And such undoubtedly Mr. Crawford would have done, if he had been elec- threatened, as the papers When Convention assembled, the general expectation was that the nomination would be given to me. It was given to the lamented Harrison. Did ambition, when, I exhibit extraordinary cheerfully acquiescing, I threw myself into the canvass, and made every exertion in my power to insure it success ? Was it evidence of unchastened ambition in me to reted. the Harrisburg sign, as I recently did, my seat in the Sen- — with which had so kindly invested me, and come home to the quiet walks of private ate my to resign the Dictatorship, e nemies life ? But I am ambitious because some of countrymen have seen fit to associate my my name with the succession for the PresidenDo those who prefer the charge know what I have done, or not done, in connexion with that object? Have they given tial office. themselves the trouble to inquire at all into any agency of mine in respect to it ? I believe not. It is a subject which I ap. proach with all the delicacy which belongs to it, and with a due regard to the dignity of the exalted station ; but on which I shall at the same time, speak to you, my friends and neighbors, without reserve, and with the utmost candor. I have prompted none of those movements among the people of which we have seen accounts. As far as I am concerned, they are altogether spontaneous, and not only without concert with me, but most generally without any sort of previous knowledge on my part. That I am thankful and grateful profoundly grateful for those manifestations of confidence and attachment, I will not conceal nor deny. But I have been, and mean to remain a passive, if not an indifferent spectator. I have reached a time of life, and seen enough of high official stations to enable me justly to appre- — — ciate their value, their cares, their responsibilities, their ceasely duties. That estimate of their worth, in a personal point of view, would restrain me from seeking to fill any one, the highest of them, in a scramble of doubtful issue with political opponents, much less with political friends. That I should feel greatly honored by a call from a majority of the People of this country to the highest office within their gift, I shall not my deny might I feel mons so authoritative and ; But nor, if health were preserved, liberty at decline to a sum- commanding. most solemnly, that I have moment, determined whether I declare, not, up to this I will consent to the use of my name or not as a candidate for the Chief Magistracy. That is a grave question, which should be decided by all attainable lights, which, I think, is not necessary yet to be decided, and a decision of which I reserve to myself, as far as I can reserve it, until the peri- — — ; 6 od arrives when it ought to be solved. That period has not, as I think, yet arrived. When does, it an impartial survey of the whole ground should be taken, the state of public opinion properly considered, and one's personal condition, physical and intellectuduly examined and weighed. In thus announcing a course of conduct for myself, it is hardly necessary to remark that it is no part of my purpose to condemn, or express any opinion whatever upon those popal, ular movements which have been made, or may be contemplated, in respect to the next election of a President of the United States. If to have served my country, during a long series of years, with fervent zeal and unshaken fidelity, in seasons of peace and war, at home and abroad, in the Legislative Halls and in an Executive Department if — have labored most sedulously to avert the embarrassment and distress which now overspread this Union and when they came, to have exerted myself anxiously, at the Extra Session, and at this, to devise healing remedies if to have desired to introduce economy and reform in the general administration, curtail enormous Executive power, and amply provide, at the same time, for the wants of the Government and the wants of the People by a Tariff which would give it revenue and them protection if to have earnestly sought to establish the bright but too rare example of a party in power, faith, ful to its promises and pledges made when out of power if these services, exertions and endeavors justify the accusation of ambition, I must plead guilty to the charge. I have wished the good opinion of the world but I defv the most malignant of D my enemies to show that I have attempted to gain it by any low or grovelling arts, by any mean or unworthy sacrifices, by the violation of any of the obligations of honor, or by a breach of any of the duties which I owed to my country. I turn, Sir, from these personal allusions and reminiscences, to the vastly more imto ; ; ; — ; • ri touch with freedom and independence upon the past as well as the present, and upon tha conduct, spirit and principles of parties. In doing this I assure my democratic brethren and fellow-citizens, of whom I am told there are many here present, (and I tender them my cordial thanks for the honor done me by their attendance here this day, with as much sincerity and gratitude as if they agreed with me in political sentiment,) that nothing is further from my intention than to say one single word that ought to wound their feelings or give offence to them. But surely, if there ever were a period in the progress of any people when all were called upon, with calmness and candor, to consider thoroughly the present posture of public and private affairs, and deliberately to inquire into the causes and remedies of this unpropitious state of things, we have arrived at that period in the United States. And if ever a people stood bound by the highest duties to themselves and to their posterity, to upon the altar of their country, cherished prejudices and party predilections and antipathies, we are now called upon to make the sacrifice, if necessary, What is our actual condition? It is one of unexampled distress and embarrassment, as universal as it is intense, pervading the whole community, and sparing none. Property of all kinds, and every where, fallen and falling in value agricultural produce of every description at the most reduced prices ; money unsound and at the same time scarce, and becoming more scarce by preparations, of doubtful and uncertain issue, to increase its soundness all the departments of business inactive and stagnant exchanges extravagantly high and constant, ly fluctuating; credit, public and private, at the lowest ebb, and confidence lost ; and a feeling of general discouragement and desacrifice ; ; And what darkens the gloom which hangs over the country, no one can discern any termination of this sad state of pression. things, nor see in the future portant subject of the present actual condiuon of this country. If they could ever be justifiable or excusable, it would be on such an occasion as this, when I am addressing those to whom I am l:ound by so many intimate and friendly ties. In speaking of the present state of the country, it will be necessary for me to any glimpse of light or hope. too highly colored. Is not this a faithful, although appalling, picture of the United States in 1842? I appeal to all present, Whigs and Democrats, Ladies and Gentlemen, to say Now let us see what if was our tion only the short time it be at all real condi- often years ago.—- — I had occasion, in February, 1832, in the Senate of the United States, when I was defending the American System against the late Col. Hayne of South Carolina, to deand I refer to this description as scribe it evidence of what I believed to be the state of That it conformthe country at that time. ed to the truth of the case, I appeal with On that confidence to those now present. ; occasion, among "I have now other things, I said : perform the more pleasing task of exhibiting an imperfect sketch of ihe existing state of the unparalleled prosperity of the country. On a general survey, we behold cultivation extended, the arts flourishing, the face of the country improved, our people fully and profitably employed, and the public countenance exhibiting tranquility, contentment and happiness. And, if we descend into particulars, we have the agreeable contemplation of a people out of debt, land rising slowly in value, but in a secure and salutary degree a ready, though not extravagant, market for all the surplus productions of our industry; innumerable flocks and herds browsing and gamboling on ten thousand hills and plains, covered with rich and verdant grasses our cities expanded, and whole villages springing up, as it were, by enchantment our exports and our imports increased and increasing our tonnage, foreign and coastwise, swelling and fully occupied the rivers of our interior animated by the perpetual thunder and lightning of countthe currency sound and abundant; the public less steamboats debt of two wars nearly redeemed and, to crown all, the public treasury overflowing, embarrassing Congress, not to find subjects of taxation, hut to select the objects which shall be liberated fiom the impost. If the term of seven years were to be to : with impartiality and in a spirit of genuine patriotism. has been said by those in high authorPeople are to blame and not the Government that the distresses of the country have proceeded from speculation and overtrading. The people have been even reproached for expecting too much from Government, and not relying sufficiently upon their own exertions. And they have been reminded that the highest duty of the Government is to take care of itself, leaving the People to shift for themselves as well as they can. Accordingly we have seen the Government retreating from the storm which, it will be seen in the sequel, itself created, and taking shelter under tho It ity, that the ; Sub-Treasury. That there may have been some specula- ; ; ; ; ; and overtrading may be true ; but all have not speculated and overtraded whilst tion ; the distress reaches, if not in the same de- ; selected, of the greatest prosperity which this people have enjoyed, since the establishment of their present Constitution, it would be exactly that period of seven years which immediately followed the passage of the Taiitf of 1824." and the prudent, as well as the enterprising and adventurous. The error of the argument consists in mistaking the effect for the cause. What produced the overtrading ? What was the cause of speculation ? How were the people tempted to abandon the industrious and secura pursuits of lite, and embark in doubtful and perilous, but seducing enterprizes ? That gree, the cautious And that period embraced the whole term of the administration of Mr. John Q. Adams, which has been so unjustly abused The contrast in the state of the country, at the two periods of 1832 and 1842, is most What has precipremarkable and startling. itated us from that great height of enviable prosperity down to the lowest depths of pecuniary embarrassment? What has occasioned the wonderful change? No foreign foe has invaded and desolated the country. We have had neither famine norearthquakes. That there exists a cause there can be no doubt; and I think it equally clear that the cause, whatever it may be. must be a general one; for nothing but a general cause could have produced such wide spread ruin; and think they a» e to be fairly attributed to the action of the Executive branch of the Fede- everywhere we behold the same or similar ral ! effects, every interest affected, every section of the Union suffering, all descriptions of produce and property depressed in value. And whilst I endeavor to find out that cause, and to trace to their true source the disastrous effects which we witness and feel, and lament, I entreat the Democratic portion of my audience, especially, to listen with patience and candor, and dismissing for a mo. ment party biases and prejudices, to decide is the important question. Now, fellow. citizens, I take show that the people have been far less to to upon myself blame than the General Government, and that whatever of error they committed, was the natural and inevitable consequence of the unwise policy of their rulers. To the action of Government is mainly to be ascribed the disorders, embarrassment and distress which all have now so much reason to deplore. And, to be yet more specific, I f Government. Three facts or events, all happening about the same time, if their immediate effects are duly considered, will afford a clear and satisfactory solution of all the pecuniary evils which now unhappily afflict this country. The first was the veto of the re-charter of Bank of the United States the second was the removal of the deposites of the United States, from that Bank to local banks.— the ; — ; • 8 the third was the refusal of the President of the United States, by an arbitrary stretch of power, to sanction the passage of the Land Bill. These events all occurred, in quick succession, in 1832-33, and each of them And deserves particular consideration. 1. When the Bank of the United States had fully recovered from its early administration, and at the period when it was proposed to re-charter it, it furnished the best currency that ever existed, possessing not merely unbounded confidence in the United States, but throughout the whole commer- No institution was ever more cial world. popular, and the utility of a bank of the United States was acknowledged by President Jackson in his Veto Message, in which he expressly stated, that he could have suggested to Congress the plan of an unexceptionable charter, if application had been made to him. And I state as a fact, what sure, will here remember and many, sustain, that during the canvass then going on for the Presidency, many of his friends in this State gave assurances, that, in the event of his re-election, a Bank of the Uni- lam would be established. was held out to the people, that a better currency should be supplied, and a more safe and faithful execution of the fiscal duties towards the Government would be performed by the local banks, than by the ted States It Bank of the United States. What was the immediate effect of the overthrow of that institution ? The establishment of innumerable local banks, which sprung up everywhere with a rapidity to which we cannot look back without amazement. A respectable document which I now hold in my states, that " in hand, I believe correctly 1830 the aggregate banking capital of the Union was $145,190,268. Within two years after the removal of the deposites, the banking capital had swollen to $331,250,337, and in 1837 it reached While the United States 440,195,710. Bank was in existence, the local banks, not aspiring to the regulation of the currency, were chartered with small capitals, as occasion and business required. After 1833, they were chartered without necessity, and multiplied beyond example. In December, 1837, there were no less than 709 State banks. Nearly four hundred banks sprung up upon the ruins of the United States Bank, and $250,000,000 of capital was in. corporated, to supplv the uses formerly discharged by the $35,000,000 capital of the Bank of the United States. The impulse given to extravagance and speculation by this enormous increase of banking capital was quickened by the circulars of the Treasury Department to these pet State banks that were made the custodiers of the Na- Revenue." tional A more vast new banks, proportion of these believe than were charLegislatures in which the Democratic party had the undisputed ascendanI four-fifths, tered in cy. I well remember that, in this State the presses of that party made a grave charge against me of being inimical to the establishment here of State banks ; and I was opposed to their establishment, until all prospect vanished of getting a Bank of the United States. The effect upon the country of this sudden increase, to such an immense amount, of the banking capital of the country, could not fail to be very great, if not disastrous. It threw out, in the utmost profusion, Bank accommodations in all the variety of forms, ordinary Bank notes, post notes, checks> The currency thus put drafts, bills, &c. forth, the people had been assured was better than that supplied by the Bank of the United States and, after the removal of the deposites, the Local Banks were urged and stimulated, by the Secretary of the Treasury, freely to discount and accommodate upon the basis of those deposites. Flooded as the country was, by these means and in this way, with all species of bank ; — money and facilities, is it surprising that they should have rushed into speculation, and freely adventured in the most desperate ? It would have been better to have avoided them it would have been better that the people should have been wi. ser and more prudent than the Government but who is most to blame, they who yielded they to temptntion so thrown before them enterprises ; — who yielded confidence to their rulers they who could not see when this inordinate issue of money was to cease, or to be- come ed, vitiated ; or Government, that tempt- seduced and betrayed them And now, fellow. citizens, ? do let us, in calmness and candor, revert for a moment to some of the means which were employ* ; down the bank of the United and to inflict upon the country all the sad consequences which ensued. I so to break sylvania, in which his States, trolled shall not stop to expose the motives of the upon that institution, and to show that it was because it refused to make itself basely and servilely instrumental to the promotion of political views and objects. The Bank was denounced as a monster, aiming as was declared, to rob the people of their liberties, and to subvert the gov. The Bank to ernment of the country. assault Why, how could subvert the Government the Bank continue to exist after the overthrow of that Government to which it was indebted for its existence, and in virtue of whose authority it could alone successfully Convulsions, revolutions, civil operate ? wars, are not the social conditions most favorable to Bank prosperity ; but they flour! ish most when order, law, regularity, puncand successful business prevail. tuality, And Rob the people of their liberties pray what would it do with them after the robbery was perpetrated ? It could not put them in its vaults, or make interest or profit upon them, the leading, if not sole object of And how could it destroy the liba Bank. erties of the people, without, at the same ! time destroying the liberties of all persons interested or concerned in the Bank ? What It is a corporation, the aggreis a bank 1 gate of whose capital is contributed by individual shareholders, and employed in pe. cuniary operations, under the management of President, Directors, Cashier, Teller, and Now, all these persons are usually Clerks. citizens of the United States, just as much interested in the preservation of the liberties of the country, as any other citizens. What earthly motive could prompt them to seek the destruction of the liberty of their fellow. citizens, and with it their own ? The fate of the Bank of the United States clearly demonstrated where the real danger to the public liberty exists. It was not in Its popularity had been great, the bank. and the conviction of its utility strong and general up to the period of the Bank Veto. Unbounded as was the influence of President Jackson, and undisguised as his hostility was to the Bank, he could not prevent the passage through Congress of a bill to re-charter it. In such favor and esteem was it held, that the Legislature of Penn2 friends hid unconsway, almost unanimously recotn* mended the recharter. But his Veto came he blew his whistle for its destruction ; it was necessary to sustain his party, which could only be done by sustaining him, and instantly, and everywhere down with the Bank and huzza for the Veto, became the watchwords and the rallying cry of his partizans. That same Legislature of Pennsylvania, now, with equal unanimity, approved the destruction of an institution which they had believed to be so indispensable to the public prosperity, and deluded people felt as if they had fortunately escaped a great National calamity The Veto notwithstanding, the House of Representatives, by a large majority, resolved that the public deposites were safe in the custody of the Bank of the United States, where they were placed under the sanction and by the command of the law } and it was well known at Washington, that ! this resolution was passed in anticipation and to prevent the possibility of their re* moval. In the face and in contempt of this decision of the Representatives of the Peo* pie, and in violation of a positive law, the removal was ordered by the President a few months after, the Secretary of the Treasury having been previously himself removed to accomplish the object. And this brings me to consider the effect produced upon the business and interests of the country by the second event to which I have alluded. It is well known to be the usage of Banks, to act upon the standing average amount of deposites as upon a permanent fund. The Bank of the United States had so regulated its transactions upon the deposites of the United States, and had granted accommodations and extended facilities as far as could be safely done on that basis. The deposites were removed and dispersed among various local banks, which were urged by an authority not likely to be disregarded, especially it did their own pecuniary interests, to discount and accommodate freely on them. They did so and thus these deposites performed a double office, by being the basis of the Bank facilities of the United States, and afterwards in the possession of the local banks. A vast addition to the circulation of the country ensued, adding to that already so copiously put forth when seconding, as ; 10 by the multitude of new Banks, which were That specuspringing up like mushrooms. lation and over-trading should have followed were to have been naturally expected. It is surprising that there were not more. Prices rose enormously, as another consequence ; and thousands were tempted, as is always the case in an advancing market, to hold on or to make purchases, under the hope of prices rising still higher. A rush of speculators was made upon the public lands, and money invested in their purchase, coming back to the deposite banks, was again and again loaned out to the same or other the speculators, to make other and other pur- chases. Who was to artificial state blame for of things ? this inflated Who and for the spe- culation which was its natural offspring? The policy of Government which produced it, or the people ? The seducer, or the seduced ? The People, who only used the means so abundantly supplied in virtue ofthe whose unwise policy tempted them into ruinous spe- public authority, or our rulers, culation 1 There was a measure, the passage of which would have greatly mitigated this un.natural state of things. It was not difficult to foresee after the Veto of the Bank, some of the consequences that would follow. The multiplication of Banks, a superabundant currency, rash and inordinate speculation, and probable ultimate suspension of specie payments. And the public domain was too brilliant and tempting a prize not to be among the first objects that would attract speculation. In March, 1833, a bill passed both Houses of Congress to distribute among 3. the States the proceeds of sales of the publie lands. It was a measure of strict jusand one of sound policy tice to the States, as it respects the revenue of the United States ; but the view I now propose to take of it applies altogether to the influence which it would have exerted upon circulation and speculation. It was the constitutional duty of the President to have returned the bill to Congress with his objections, if he were opposed to it ; but the bill fell by his arbitrarily withholding it from Congress. Let us here pause and consider what would have been the operation of that most timely and salutary measure, if it had not been arrested. The bill passed in 1838, and in a short time after, public lands were made the sales of the an unpreceden. insomuch, that in one year they amounted to about $25,000,000, and in a few years to an aggregate of about $50,000,000. ted extent to ; was manifest that, if this fund, so rapidly accumulating, remained in the custody of the local banks, in conformity with the Treasury Circular, and with their interests, it would be made the basis of new loans, new It accommodations, and fresh bank facilities. was manifest that the same identical sum of money might, as it in fact did, purchase many tracts of land, by making the circuit from the land offices to the banks, and from the banks to the land offices, besides stimuIt lating speculation in other forms. Under the operation ofthe measuresofthe would have been semi-annually returned to the States, and would have been applied, under the direction of their respective Legislatures, to various domestic and useful purposes. It would have fallen upon the land, like the rain of heaven, in gentle, genial and general showers, passing through a thousand rills, and fertilizing and beautifying the country. In. stead of being employed in purposes of speculation, it would have been applied to the common benefit of the whole people. Finally, when the fund had accumulated and was accumulating in an alarming degree, it was distributed among the States by the deposite act, but so suddenly distributed, in such large masses, and in a manner so totally in violation of all the laws and rules of finance, that the crisis of suspension in 1837 distribution, that great fund was greatly accelerated. This would have been postponed, if not altogether avoided, if the land bill of 1833 had been approved and executed. To these three causes, fellow citizens, the Veto of the Bank of the United States, with the consequent creation of innumerable local banks, the removal of the deposites of the United States from the Bank of the United States, and their subsequent free use, and the failure ofthe land bill of 1833,1 verily believe, all, or nearly all of the pecuniary embarrassments of the country are plainly attributable. If the bank had been rechartered, the public deposites suffered to remain undisturbed where the law required them to be made, and the land bill gone into operation, it is my firm conviction that we should 11 have had no more individual in than is common, times, to a trading in distress and ru- ordinary and regular and commercial commu- nity. And do just now take a rapid review of a circulation in Bank notes amounting to about two millions and a half, founded upon specie in their vaults amounting to about one million and a quarter, half the actual circu- Have we lation. no currency was to be supplied by the local banks and in the first stages of the experiment, after the removal of the deposites, they were highly commended from high authority, for their beneficial and extensive operations in exchange, the financial facilities which they afforded to the Government, money ; dec &c. But the day of trouble and difficulty which had been predicted, for the want of a They could United States Bank, came. not stand the shock, but gave way, and the Then what suspension of 1837 took place. was the course of those same rulers? They had denounced and put down the Bank of the United States. It was a monster. They had extolled and lavished praises on the local banks. Now, they turned round against own creation and com. the objects of their Now they were a brood of lit. monsters, corrupt, and corrupting, with separate privileges, preying upon the vitals of the State. They vehemently call out for a divorce of State and Bank, and meanly retreating under the Sub-Treasury, from the storm which themselves had raised, leaving the people to suffer under all its pelting and pitiless rage they add insult to injury, by telling them that they unreasonably expect too much from Government, that they must take care of themselves, and that it is the highest and most patriotic duty of a free Government, to take care of itself, without regard to the sufferings and distresses of the peomendalion. tie ple ! They began with the best currency, promised a better, and end with giving none For we might as well resort to the costumes of our original parents in the garden of Eden, as attempt in this enlightened age, with the example of the whole commercial world before us, to cramp this energetic and enterprising people by a circulation exclusively of the precious metals. Let us see how the matter stands with us here in Ken. ! tucky, and I believe we stand as well as the people do in most of the States. have We too much money [No ? S exclaimed many voices.] If all the Banks were put down, and all bank paper annihilated, we should have just half the They began the experiments of our rulers. with incontestibly the best currency in the That better world, and promised a better. ! that we now that one of the have. I am quite sure immediate causes of our present difficulties, is a defect in quantity as well as quality of our circulating medium. And it would be impossible, if we were reduced to such a regimen as is proposed by the hard-moneyed theorists, to avoid stop laws, relief laws, re-pudiation, bankruptcies and perhaps civil commotion. I have traced the principal causes of the present embarrassed condition of the coun. try, I hope with candor and fairness, and without giving offence to any of my fellowcitizens, who may have differed in political opinion from me. It would have been far more agreeable to my feelings to have dwelt, as I did in 1832, during the third year of the first term of President Jackson's Ad. ministration, upon bright and cheering pros, it pects of general prosperity. I thought contrast that period with the useful to present one, and causes to inquire into the which have brought upon us such a sad and dismal reverse. A much more important object remains to me to attempt, and that is, to point out remedies for existing and disorders. And the first I would suggest requires the co-operation of the Government and the and frugality strict it is economy People and persevering economy, both in public and evils — ; Government should incur private affairs. or continue no expense that can be justly and honorably avoided, and individuals The prosperity of the should do the same. country has been impaired by causes operating throughout several years, and it will not be restored in a year, perhaps not in a period less than it has taken to destroy it. But we must not only be economical, we must be industrious, indefatigably industrious. An immense amount of capital has been wasted and squandered in visionary or unprofitable enterprises, public and private. can be reproduced by labor and saving. The second remedy which I would sug- It gest, and that without which all others must 12 prove abortive or ineffectual, is a sound currency, of uniform value throughout the Union, and redeemable in specie upon the demand of the holder. I know of but one mode in which that object can be accom. plished, and that has stood the test of time and practical experience. If any other can be devised than a Bank of the United States, which should be safe and certain and free from the influence of Government, and especially not under the control of the Exec* utive department, IshoulJ for one, gladly see it embraced. I am not exclusively wedded to a Bank of the United iSiatrs, nor do I desire to see one established against the will and But all without the consent of the people. my observation and reflection have served to strengthen and confirm my conviction, that such an institution, emanating from the authority of the General Government, properly restricted and guarded, with such improvements as experience has pointed out, can alone supply a reliable currency. Accordingly, at the Extra Session, a bill passed both houses of Congress, which in my opinion, contained an excellent charter, with one or two slight defects, which it was intended to cure by a supplemental bill, if That the veto had not been exercised. charter contained two new, and I think adone was to separate the mirable features operation of issuing a circulation from that of banking, confiding these faculties to different boards ; and the other was to limit the dividends of the bank, bringing the excess, beyond the prescribed amount, into the In the preparation of the public treasury. that charter, every sacrifice was made eould be made to accommodate it, especially in regard to the branching power, to the But inreputed opinions of the President. stead of meeting us in a mutual spirit of conciliation, he fired, as was aptly said by a Virginia editor, upon the flag of truce sent ; from the capitol. Congress, anxious to fulfil the expectation of the people, another bank bill was prepared, in conformity with the plan of a Bank sketched by the acting President in his Veto measure, after a previous consultation between him and some distinguished memhers of Congress, and two leading members of his Cabinet. The bill was shaped in precise conformity to his views, as communicated by those members of the CabineJ, and as communicated to others, and was submitted to his inspection after it was so and he gave assurances that he prepared would approve such a bill. I was no party to the transaction, but I do not entertain a doubt of what I state. The bill passed both Houses of Congress without any alteration or amendment whatever, and the Veto was again employed. It is painful for me to advert to a grave occurrence, marked by such dishonor and bad faith. Although the President, through his recognized organ, derides and denoun. ces the Whigs, and disowns being one although he administers the Executive branch of the Government in contempt of their feelings and in violation of their principles; and although all whom he chooses to have ; ; denominated as ultra Whigs, that r is to say, the great body of the Whig party, have come under his ban, and those of them in with his expulsion, I wish not to say of him one word that is not due to truth and to the country. I will, however, say that in my opinion, the Whigs cannot justly be held responsible for his administration of the Executive department, for the measures he may recommend, or for his failure to recommend others, nor especially for the manner in which he distributes the public patronage. They will do their duty, I hope, towards the country, and render all good and proper support to Gov. ernment but they ougnt not to be held ac countable for his conduct. They elected him, it is true, but for another office, and he came into the present one by a lamentable visitation of Providence. There had been no such instance occurring under the Gov. emment. If the Whigs were bound to scrutinize his opinions, in reference to an office which no one ever anticipated he would fill, he was bound in honor and good fiith to decline the Harrisburgh nomination, if he could not conscientiously co. operate with them in sustaining the principles that Had the President brought him into office. who was elected lived, had that honest and office are threatened ; good man, on whose face, in that picture, we now gaze, been spared, I feel perfectly confident that all the measures which the principles of the Whigs authorized the country to expect, including a Bank of the. United States, would have been carried. But it may be said that a sound currency, ' — 13 such as I have described, is unattainable during the administration of Mr. Tyler. It will be, if it can only be obtained, through the instrumentality of a Bank of the United States, unless he changes his opinion, as he has done> in regard to the land bill. Unfortunately, our Chief Magistrate possesses more power, in some respects, than a King or Queen of England. The crown is never separated from the nation, but is obliIf the Ministry ged to conform to its will. holds opinions adverse to the nation, and is thrown into minority in the House of Commons, the crown is constrained to dismiss the Ministry, and appoint one whose opinThis, Queen ions coincide with the nation. Victoria has recently been obliged to do and not merely to change the Ministry, but to dismiss the official attendants upon her person. But here, if the President holds opinions adverse to that of Congress and the nation upon important public measures, there is no remedy but upon the periodical return of the rights of the ballot box. Another remedy, powerfully demanded by the necessities of the times, and requisite to maintaining the currency in a sound state, is a Tariff, which will lessen importations from abroad, and ; tend to increase supplies at home from domestic industry. I have so often expressed my views on this subject, and so recently in the Senate of the United States, that I do not think there is any occasion for my enlarging upon it at this time. I do not think that a high tariff is necessary, but one that shall insure an adequate revenue and reasonable protection and it so happens that the interests of the Treasury and the wants of the people now perfectly coincide. Union is our highest and greatest interest. No one can look beyond its dissolution without horror and dismay. Harmony is essential to the preservation of the Union. It was the leading, although not the only motive, in proposing the compromise act, to preserve that harmony. The power of protecting the interests of our own country can never be surrendered to foreign nations, without a culpable dereliction of duty. Of this truth, all parts of the nation are every day becoming more ; and more sensible. In the meantime, this indis- pensable power should be exercised with a discretion and moderation, and in a form least calculated to revive prejudices, or to check the progress of reform now going on in public opinion. In connection with a system of remedial measures, I shall only allude without stopping to dwell on the distribution bill, that just and equitable settlement of a great National question, which sprung up during the Revolutionary War, which has seriously agitated the coontry, and which it is deeply to be regretted had not been settled ten years ago, as then proposed. Independent of all other considerations, the fluctua- tion in the receipts from sales of the public lands so great atid constant, that it is a resource on is which the General Government ought not to rely for revenue. It is far better that the advice of a Democratic land Committee of the Senate, at the head of which was the experienced and distinguished Mr. King of Alabama, given some years ago, should be follow, that the Federal Treasury be replenished with duties on imports, without bringing into it any part of the land fund. I have thus suggested measures of relief adapted to the present state of the country, and I have noticed some of the differences which un- fortunately exist between the two leading parties into which our people are unhappily divided. In considering the question whether the counsels of the one or the other of these parties are wisest, and best calculated to advance the interests, the honor, and the prosperity of thenation, which every citizen ought to do, we should discard all passion and prejudice, and' exercise, as far as possible, a perfect impartiality. And we should not confine our attention merely to the particular measures which parties those respectively espouse or oppose, but extend it to their general course and conduct, and to the spirits and purposes by which they are animated. should anxiously* enquire whither shall we be led following in the lead of the one or the other of those parties shall we be carried to the achievement of th© glorious destiny, which patriots here, and the liberal portion of mankind every where, have fondly hoped awaiisus] or shall we ingloriously terminate our career, by adding another melancholy example of the instability of human affairs, and the folly with which self-government We is administered] do not arrogate to myself more impartiality, or greater freedom from party bias, than belong to other men ; but unless I deceive myself, I think I have reached a time of life, and am now in a position of retirement, from which I can look back with calmness, and speak, I hope, with candor and justice. I do not intend a general contrast between the two parties, as to their course, doctrines and spirit. That would be too extenI sive and laborious an undertaking for this occapurpose to specify a few recent instances, in which, I think, our political opponents have exhibited a spirit and bearing, disorganizing and dangerous to the permanency and stability of our institutions, and I invoke the serious and sion, but I sober attention to them, of all who are here as-sembled. The first I would notice is the manner in which Territories have been lately admitted, as — — 14 States, into the Union. The early and regular practice of the Government was for Congress to pass previously a law authorizing a Convention, regulating the appointment of members to it, specifying the qualification of voters, &c. In that way most of the States were received. Of late, without any previous sanction or authority from Congress, several Territories have proceeded of themselves to call Conventions, form Constitutions and demand admission into the Union ; and they were admitted. I do not deny 'that their population and condition entitled them admission; but I insist to that it should have been done in the regular and established mode. In the case of Michigan, aliens were allowed to vote, as aliens have been allowed to become pre-cmptioners in the public lands. And a majority in Congress sanctioned the proceeding. When foreigners are naturalized and incorporated, as citizens, in our community, they are entitled to all the privileges, within the limits of the Constitution, which belong to a native born citizen ; and, if necessary, they should be protected, at home and abroad the thunder of our artillery should roar as loud and effectually in their defence, as if their birth — were upon American soil. But I cannot but think it wrong and hazardous, to allow aliens, who have just landed upon our shores, who have not yet renounced their allegiance to Foreign potentates, nor sworn fidelity to our constitution, with all the influences of monarchy and anarchy about them, to participate in our elections, and affect our legislation. — 2. The New- Jersey Election the great seal of the State and the decision of the local authorities were put aside by the tfowse o! Representatives,and a majority thus secured to the Democratic party. 3 Nullification, which is nothing more nor less than an assumption of ons State to abrogate within its limits a law passed by the twenty-six States in Congress assembled. 4. ate revolutionary attempt in Maryland to subvert the existing Government, without any authority of law. 5. The refusal of a minority in the Legislature of Tennessee to co-operate with the majority ("their Constitution requiring the presence of two-thirds of the members) to execute a positive injunction of the Constitution of the United Stotes to appoint two United States Senators. In principle, that refusal was equivalent to announcing the willingness of that minority to dissolve the Union. For if 13 or 14 of the 26 States were to refuse altogether to elect Senators, a dissolution of the Union would be the consequence. That minority^ for weeks together, and time after time, deliberately refused to enter upon the election. And, if the Union is not in fact dissolved, it is not because the principle involved would not lead to a dissolution, but because 1\J or 13 other States have not like themselves refused to perform a high constitutional duty. And why did they refuse? Simply because they apprehended the election to the Senate of political opponents. The seals of the two Tennessee Senators in the ; A I U. S. Senate are now vacant, and Tennessee ha* no voice in that branch of Congress in the general legislation. One of the highest compliments which 1 ever received was to have been appointed, at a popular meeting in Tennessee, one of her Senators, in conjunction with a distinguished Senator from South Carolina, with all the authority that such an appointment could bestow. I repeat here an expression of my acknowledgments for the honor, which I most ambitiously resigned when I gave up my dictatorship and my seat as a Kentucky Senator. [A general laugh ] Then there is repudiation, that foul stain upon the American character, cast chiefly by ihe Democrats of Mississippi, and which it will require years to efface from our bright escutcheon. 7. The support given to Executive usurpation, and the expunging the records of the Senate of the 6. United Stales. 8. The recent refusal of State legislatures to pass laws to carry into effect the Act of Distribution.-rAn Act of Congress, pass 'd according to all the forms of the Constitution, after ample discussion and deliberate consideration, and after the lapse of It ten years from the period it was first proposed. is the duty of all to submit to the laws regularly passed. Thev may attempt to get them repealed ; they have a right to test their validity before the Judiciary but whilst the laws remain in force, unrepealed, and without any decision against their constitutional validity, snbmisston to them is not merely a constitutional and legal, but a moral duty. In this case it is true that those who refuse to abide by them only bile their own noses. But it i3 the principle of the refusal to which I call your attention. If a minority may refuse compliance wiih one law, what is to prevent minorities from disregarding Is this any thing but a modification of all law 1 nullification 1 What right have the servants of the people (the Legislative bodies,) to withhold from their masters their assigned quotas of a great public fund 1 9. The last, though not the least, instance of the manifestation of disorganization which I shall notice, is the recent convulsion in Rhode Island. That little but gallant and patriotic State had a Charter derived from a British King, in operation between one and two hundred years. There had been engrafted upon it laws and usages, from time to time, and altogether a practical Constitution sprung up, which carried the State, as one of the glorious thirteen, through the Revolution, and brought her safelv into the Union. Under it her Greens and Perrys and other distinguished men, were born and rose to eminence. The Legislature had called a Convention to remedy whatever defects it had, and to adapt it to the progressive improvements of the age. In that work of reform the Dorr party might h.«ve co-operated but, not choosing to co-operate, and in wanton defiance of all es« tablished authority, they undertook, subsequently, The result was two to call another Convention. Constitutions, not essentially differing on the principal point of controversy, the right of suffrage. ; ; Upon submitting to the People that which was formed by the regular Convention, a small majority voted against it, produced by a union in casting votes, between tne Dorr party, and some of the 15 Charter who were opposed to other Constitution being also submitted to the people, an apparent majority voted for it, made up of every description of votes legal and illegal, by proxy and otherwise, taken in the most irregular kind unauthorized manner. The Dorr party proceeded to put their Constitufriends of the any change. old The by electing him as the Governor tion in operation, of the State, members to the mock Legislature and other officers. But thpy did not stop here they proceeded to collect, to drill and to marshal a mili; tary force, and pointed their cannon against the Arsenal of the State. The President was called upon to interpose the power of the Union to preserve the peace of the State in conformity with an express provision of the Federal Constitution. And I have as much fileasure in expressing my opinion that he faiihfuly performed his duty in responding to that call, as it gave me pain to be obliged to animadvert on other parts of his conduct. The leading presses of the Democratic party at Washington, Albany, New- York and Richmond, and elsewhere, came out in support of the Dorr party, encouraging them in their work of Rebellion and Treason. And when matters had got to a crisis and the two parties were preparing for civil war, and every hour it was expected to blaze out, a great Tammany meeting was held in the City of NewYork, headed by the leading men of the party, the Cambrelengs, the Vanderpools, the Aliens, &c with a perfect knowledge that the military power of the Union was to be employed, if necessary, to suppress the insurrection, and, notwithstanding, they passed resolutions tending to awe the President, a«d to countenance and cheer the treason. Fortunately, numbers of the Dorr party abandoned their Chief he fled, and Rhode-Island, unaided by any actual force of the Federal authority, proved herself able alone to maintain law, order and government within her borders. I do not attribute to mv fellow-citizens here assembled, from whom I differ in opinion, any disposition to countenance the revolutionary proceedings I do not believe that they apin Rhode-Island. prove of it. I do not believe that their party generally could approve it, nor some of the other examples of a spirit of disorganization which I have enumerated but the misfortune is, in time of high party excitement, that the leaders commit themselves, and finally commit the body of their party, who perceive that, unless they stand by and sustain their leaders, a division, and perhaps destruction of Of all the the party would be the consequence. springs of human action, party ties are perhaps the most powerful. Interest has been supposed to be ; ; more so, but party ties are more influential, unless they are regarded as a modification of imaginary Under their sway we have seen not only individuals but whole communities abandon their long cherished interests and principles and turn round and oppose them with violence. Did not the rebellion in Rhode Island find for its support a precedent established by the majority in Congress, in the irregular admission of Territories as States, into the Union, to which I have heretoIs there not reason to fear that the fore alluded 1 example which Congress had previously presented encouraged the Rhode-Island rebellion'? interest. It has been attempted to defend that rebellion upon the doctrines of the American Declaration of Independence, but no countenance to it can be fairfrom them. That declaration asserts, it ly derived is true, that whenever a Government becomes destructive of the ends of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, for the security of which it was instituted, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and institute a new government and so undoubtedly it is. But this is a right only to De exer" Prudence incised in grave and extreme cases. deed will dictate," says that venerated instrument, " that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes." " But •, when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same oi j' ct, evinces a design to reduce them under an adsolute despotism, it is their right, their duty; to throw off such Government." Will it be pretended that the actual Government of Rhode Island is destructive of life, liberty, or the pursuit of happiness 1 That it has perpetrated a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing the same invariable object^ to reduce the people under absoOr that any other cause of comlute despotism'? plaint existed but such as might be peacefully remedied, without violence and without blood 1 Such as, in point of tact, the legitimate Government had regularly summoned a Convention to redress, but for the results of whose deliberations the restless spirit of disorder and rebellion had not the patience to wait! Why, fellow-citizens, little Rhody (God bless and preserve her) is one of the most prosperous, enterprising, and enlightened States in this whole Union. Nowhere is life, liberty, and property more perfectly secure. is this right of the People to abolish an existing Government, and to set up a new one, to be practically exercised 1 Our Revolutionary ancestors did not tell us by worc!s, but they proclaimed it by gallant and noble deeds. are the People. that are to tear up the whole fabric of human society, whenever and as often as caprice or passion How Who may prompt them 1 When all he arrangements and ordinances of existing and organized society are prostrated and subverted, as must be supposed in such a lawless and irregular movement as that in Rhode Island, the established privileges and distinctions between the sexes, between the colors, between the ages, between natives and foreigners, be* tween the sane and insane, and between the innocent and the gui'ty convict, all the offspring of positive institutions, are cast down and abolished, and society is thrown into one heterogeneous and unregulated mass. And is it contended that the major I part of this Babel congregation is invested with the right to build up, at its pleasure, a new government 1 That as often, and whenever society can be drummed up and thrown into such a shapeless mass, the major part of it may establish another and another new Government in endless succession % this would overturn all social organization, make revolutions the extreme and last resort of an oppressed people— the commonest occurrences of human life, and the standing order of the day. such a principle would operate in a certain section of this Union, with a peculiar population, you will readily conceive. No community could endure such an intolerable state of things any where, and all — Why — How — 16 would, sooner or take refuge from such ceasecalm repose of absolute despo- later, less agitation, in the tism. I know of no mode by which an existing Government can be overthrown and put aside, and a new •one erected in its place but by tlie consent of that Government, express or implied, or by forcible resis- is Revolution. Fellow-Citizens 1 have enumerated these examples of a dangerous spirit of disorganization and disregard of law, with no purpose of giving offence, or exciting bitter and unkind feelings, here or elsewhere; but to illustrate the principles, character and tendency of the two great parties into which In all of those examples, this country is divided. tance, that : the Democratic party, as it calls itself, (a denomination to which I respectfully thiuk it has not the least just pretension,) or large portions of that party, extending to whole States, united with apparent corTo all of them the Whig party was condiality. -And now let me ask stantly and firmly opposed. you, in all candor and sincerity, to say truly and impartially to which of ihese two parlies can the interests, the happiness, and the destinies of tliis great people be most safely confided 1 I appeal especially, and with perfect confidence, to the candor of the real, the ancient and long-t:it:d Democracy— that old Republican party, with whom I stood side by side, during some of the darkest days of the Republic, in seasons of both War and Peace. The present sitFellow-citizens of all parties! uation of our country is one of unexampled distress and difficulty ; but there is no occasion for any dekind and bountiful Providence has spondency. never deserted us—punished us he, perhaps, has A and our misdeeds.— a genial climate and free institutions. Our whole land is covered, in profusion, wilh the means of subsistence and the for our neglect of his blessings We have a varied and fertile soil, life. Our gallant Ship, it is unfortunately true, lies helpless, tossed on a tempestuous sea, amidst the conflicting billows of contending parties, without a rudder and without a faithful piBut that Ship is our country, embodying all lot. our past glory, all our future hopes. Its crew is our whole people, by whatever political denomination they are known. If she goes down, we all go down together. Let us remember the dying words comforts of — of the gallantand lamented Lawrence " Don't «ive up the Ship." The glorious banner of o'ir country, wilh i's Stars and Stripes, still proudly floats at its masthead. With stout hearts and strong arms we can surmount all difficulties. Let us all all rally around lhat Banner, and firmly resolve to perpetuate our liberties and regain our lost prosperity. Whigs! arouse from the ignoble supinene-s which encompasses you awake from the lethargy in which — — — — — you lie bound castfrom you that unwonhy apathy which seems to make you indifferent to the fate of your country arouse, awake shake off the dewdrops that glider on your garments, and once more You have been march to Buttle and to Victory disappointed, deceived, betrayed— shamefully deceived and betraved. But will you therefore also prove fdse and faithless to your country, or obey ! ! the impulses of a just and patriotic indignation 1 As for Captain Tyler, in the pan peck your rifles again. ; E. G. hie is a mere snap Whig flints and — a flash try your SUTHERLAND, PUBLISHER, Sixo Bins, New-York.