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to be banged.” Almost every lip in the State might have said it, except that single lip of its Governor; and the moment he had uttered these words, in the theory of the Eng. lish law, it was not possible to impanel an impartial jury in the Commonwealth of Virginia; it was not possible to get the materials and the machinery to try him according to even the ugliest pattern of English jurisprudence. And yet the Governor does not know that he has written himself down a non compos! And the Commonwealth that he governs supposes that it is still a Christian polity! They have not the faintest conception of what goes to make up government. The worst Jeffries that ever, in his most drunken hour, climbed up a lamp-post in the streets of London would not have tried a man who could not stand on his feet. There is no such record in the blackest roll of tyr. anny. If Jeffries could speak, he would thank God that at last his name might be taken down from the gibbet of history, since the Virginia bench has made his worst act white, set against the blackness of this modern infamy. And yet the New York press daily prints the accounts of the trial. Trial! The Inquisition used to break every other bone in a man's body, and then lay him on a pallet, giving him neither counsel nor opportunity to consult one, and then wring from his tortured mouth something like a confession, and call it a trial! But it was heaven-robed innocence compared with the trial, or what the New York press call so, that has been going on in startled, frightened Charleston. I speak what I know, and I speak what is but the breath and whisper of the summer breezes com. pared with the tornado of rebuke that will come back from the press of Great Britain, when they hear that we affect to call that a jury trial, and blacken the names of judge and jury by baptizing these pirate orgies with such honorable appellations.
I wish I could say anything worthy of the great deed which has taken place in our day—the opening of the sixth seal, the pouring out of the last vial but one on a corrupt and giant institution. I know that many men will deem me a fanatic for uttering this wholesale vituperation, as it will be called, upon a State, and this indorsement of a madman. I can only say that I have spoken on this anti-slavery question before the American people twenty years; that I have seen the day when this same phase of popular opinion was on the other side. You remember the first time I was ever privileged to stand on this platform by the magnanimous generosity of your clergymen, when New York was about to bully and crush out the freedom of speech at the dicta. tion of Captain Rynders. From that day to this, the same braving of public thought has been going on from here to Kansas, until it bloomed in the events of the last three years. It has changed the whole face of the sentiment in these Northern States. You meet with the evidence of it everywhere. When the first news of Harper's Ferry came to Massachusetts, if you were riding in the cars, if you were walking in the streets, if you met a Democrat, or a Whig, or
а a Republican, no matter what his politics, it was a singular circumstance that he did not speak of the guilt of Brown, of the atrocity of the deed, as you might have expected. The first impulsive expression, the first outbreak of every man's words was: “What a pity he did not succeed! What a fool he was for not going off Monday, when he had all he wanted! How strange he did not take his victory and march away with it!" It indicated the unconscious leav. ening of a sympathy with the attempt. Days followed on;
they commenced what they called their trial; you met the same classes again;—no man said he ought to be hanged; no man said he was guilty; no man predicated anything of his moral position ;-every man voluntarily and inevitably seemed to give vent to his indignation at the farce of a trial -indicative again of that unheeded, unconscious, potent, but widespread sympathy on the side of Brown.
Do you suppose that these things mean nothing? What the tender and poetic youth dreams to-day, and conjures up with inarticulate speech, is to-morrow the vociferated result of public opinion, and the day after is the charter of na. tions. The sentiments we raise to intellect, and from intellect to character, the American people have begun to feel. The mute eloquence of the fugitive slave has gone up and down the highways and byways of the country; it will annex itself to the great American heart of the North, even in the most fossil state of its “hunkerism," as a la. tent sympathy with its right side. This blow, like the first blow at Lexington, heard around the world—this blow at Harper's Ferry reveals men. Watch those about you, and you will see more of the temper and unheeded purpose and real moral position of men than you would imagine. This is the way nations are to be judged. Be not in a hurry; it will come soon enough from this sentiment. We stereotype feeling into intellect, and then into statutes, and finally into national character. We have got the first stage of growth. Nature's live growths crowd out and rive dead matter. Ideas strangle statutes. Pulse-beats wear down granite, whether piled in jails or capitols. The people's hearts are the only title-deeds, after all. “Your Barn. burners said: “Patroon titles are unrighteous!" Judges replied: "Such is the law." Wealth sbrieked: “Vested
rights!" Parties talked of Constitutions still the people said: “Sin!” They shot a sheriffa parrot press cried: "Anarchy!" Lawyers growled: "Murder!" Still, nobody was hanged, if I recollect aright. To-day the heart of the Barnburner beats in the statute book of your State. John Brown's movement against slavery is exactly the same. Wait a while, and you'll all agree with me. What is fanaticism to-day is the fashionable creed to-morrow, and trite as the multiplication table a week after.
John Brown has stirred omnipotent pulses-Lydia Maria Child's is one. She says: “That dungeon is the place for me," and writes a letter in magnanimous appeal to the better nature of Governor Wise. She says in it: “John Brown is a hero; he has done a noble deed. I think he was all right; but he is sick; he is wounded; he wants a woman's pursing. I am an Abolitionist; I have been so thirty years. I think slavery is a sin, and John Brown a saint; but I want to come and nurse him; and I pledge my word that if you will open his prison door, I will use the privilege, under sacred honor, only to nurse him. I inclose you a message to Brown; be sure and deliver it." And the mes. sage was: “Old man, God bless you! You have struck a noble blow; you have done a mighty work; God was with you; your heart was in the right place. I send you across five hundred miles the pulse of a woman's gratitude." And Governor Wise has opened the door, and announced to the world that she may go in. John Brown has conquered the pirate. Hopel there is hope everywhere. It. is only the universal history:
"Right forever on the scaffold, Wrong forever on the throng;
He graduated at Harvard College in 1830, and four years later was ad. mitted to the bar. For the next three years he was a lecturer in the Harvard Law School, after which he spent three years in Europe. On his return ho began the practice of law, but gradually drifted into politics during the antislavery struggle. In 1851 he was sent from Massachusetts to the Federal Senate, to which he was regularly re-elected for the rest of his life. A long series of speeches bristling with invective brought about an attack upon him in. May, 1856, by Preston 8. Brooks, a Representative from South Carolina, in retaliation for Sumner's criticism of Brooks' uncle, a Senator from his Stato. Sumner never fully recovered from the effects of the assault, yet, when his party assumed control of the Senate in 1861, he became one of its foremost members. His special field of service in the Senate was the Committee on Foreign Relations, of which he was chairman for ten years. He opposed the roelection of Grant to the Presidency in 1872, and his later years were passed out of accord with the party which he had helped to organize. He died at Wash. Ington on March 11, 1874.
ON THE CRIME AGAINST KANSAS
UNITED STATES SENATE, MAY 19-20, 1856 Mr. President : OU are now called to redress a great transgression.
Seldom in the history of nations has such a question
been presented. Tariffs, army bills, navy bills, land bills, are important, and justly occupy your care; but these all belong to the course of ordinary legislation. As means and instruments only, they are necessarily subordinate to the conservation of government itself. Grant them or deny them, in greater or less degree, and you will inflict no shock. The machinery of government will continue to