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Copyright, 1910, by
Published, October, 1910
Electrotyped and Printed by
URING my long residence in London as Am
bassador of the United States, it was my good fortune to be brought into close contact with the British people, which gave me a unique opportunity to study their habits and characteristics, and their social and political institutions. My one instruction from President McKinley, when he handed me my letter of credence, was to promote the welfare of both countries by cultivating the most friendly relations between them. To this end I visited many parts of Great Britain, and wherever I went I found this message of good will most cordially reciprocated. I thought that one effective way of carrying out this instruction was to do what I could to make the people better acquainted with the United States, its history, its institutions and its great men, which would show them that there is no radical difference between us, and that under different Constitutional forms we maintain with equal fidelity the same great causes of liberty and justice and human progress. The addresses which are contained in this vol
ume are selected from many which were delivered in pursuit of this general object.
The four great Americans whom I selected for illustration in this way, Lincoln, Franklin, Hamilton and Emerson, were certainly no better known to the average Englishman, than the leading public men of Great Britain of corresponding periods are known to the average American, but great interest was manifested in hearing about them.
Lincoln, who had been the subject of much hostility and abuse in his lifetime, was glorified in England as in all other countries after his death as the great martyr and emancipator. But the marvellous story of his life, with its strange vicissitudes and tragical incidents, was not at all familiar. It was hardly possible under the English system of government that such a character and career could be developed, but none the less were they eager to hear everything about a man whose record seemed little short of miraculous. When they realized the fact that the emancipation of four million slaves, as the only means of preserving the existence of the nation, was all his work, their enthusiasm for him knew no bounds, and as English history affords no parallel example of a man rising by his own efforts, and the events of his time, from such humble beginnings to such a pinnacle of lasting