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at their bidding, and become the laughing stock of Europe,” Adams exclaimed.
“Never !" cried Gallatin, “I would rather break up the mission and go home.”
The Americans finally chose the place of meeting, and then ensued a tedious and tiresome series of sessions during which our commissioners showed their true American spirit, wit and independence and step by step disputed and quibbled over every point until the treaty was signed.
“The assumption and presumption of those beggarly Americans," as they called them was galling to British arrogance. Sneers and innuendoes were their portion, but they never flinched under the ordeal.
Russell was quite a young man, who was appointed Minister to Sweden. Bayard had displayed proof of his ability, while Adams, Gallatin and Clay were the most striking figures. There was Adams, quiet, serious, self-contained, precise and prim like his Puritan ancestors, a gentleman and a scholar. There was Gallatin, calm, collected, and methodical, a veritable financier, who out of chaos brought the Treasury into some sort of system. Clay impulsive and impetuous, his hot Southern blood coursing through his veins, made him impatient of restraint and weary of tedious debates.
At one time Gallatin and Bayard were ready to sail for home, and the breaking off negotiations was imminent, owing to England's arbitrary demands, just as instructions were received from London to the English commissioners to modify their demands.
Finally peace was declared and it was celebrated with great rejoicing throughout the land. Although the result, like a game of chess, was more of a draw than a victory on either side, and matters were left in abeyance, which were a source of trouble in the future.
However, the republic did not enjoy uninterrupted rest, the Indians harassed the settlers in the western and southern States, and doughty General Jackson waged war against the Tedskins and Spanish settlers in Florida.
Florida finally became a part of the United States through the payment of five million dollars to Spain in 1819, which transaction was finally completed in 1823.
The Mississippi and its tributaries were then in undisputed possession of the United States, and this opened an outlet to the sea, and gave new impetus to trade and commerce.
Texas established an independent republic, free of Mexican control, in 1836. The influx of American settlers quickly populated the land, and introduced American ideas and within a few years Texas desired annexation to the United States.
This step was finally effected in 1845, but it led to the war with Mexico, because our country sustained the claims of Texas to disputed territory, then in possession of Mexico.
The upshot of the war with Mexico was the annexation of Texas as well as the acquisition of California, which later proved to be the El Dorado of America and New Mexico.
The long-winded dispute with England in regard to the boundary line was finally adjusted peaceably and Oregon became a part of the United States. Oregon was settled by Americans.
The Civil War ensued and the abolition of slavery was the result. Years of trial and probation followed during the period of reconstruction, but like Daniel who issued safe and sound from the fiery furnace, America came out of the ordeal strong and powerful, and North and South were joined once more in an indissoluble union. “United we stand, divided we fall," is the watchword of our Union.
With the exception of troubles with the Indians in the far west ; labor strikes, riots and other difficulties, our country enjoyed uninterrupted peace for over thirty years, until the cries of a suffering people beyond seas, only a few miles from our southern coast, aroused the sympathy of the Nation, and America girded on her armor, unsheathed her sword, and waged war on Spain's forces in the Philippines, Cuba and Porto Rico, achieving victories on sea and land which aroused the admiration of Europe.
With the acquisition of foreign lands far away the problems which confront our statesmen are increased. Liberty, in other words America, must loosen the shackles of oppression and ignorance of benighted peoples, of alien races in the East, so that they may bask in the beneficent rays of the Sun of Liberty.
England expressed sympathy for America during her recent successful war against wrong and oppression. Like a proud father patting his offspring on the back, John Bull's attitude towards Brother Jonathan has appeared to say: "Well done, my son, I am proud of you."
The ties of race and blood are strong and within the past years a better understanding has arisen between the United States and Great Britain.
International marriages, clever American and English diplomats have been great factors in cementing the tie between the two great English speaking peoples.
The Alabama claims, the Behring Strait affair, the Venezuelan boundary question, which threatened an open rupture. were adjusted peaceably by the scratch of a pen, and the sword remained sheathed.
Anglo-Americans inherit Anglo-Saxon pluck, and Yankee shrewdness and wit, together with a generous, magnanimous spirit which will brook neither wrong or oppression. And freedom is the birthright of every native of the New World.
MARY ELIZABETH SPRINGER.
THE WOMEN OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION.
MANY volumes have been written about the heroes of the Revolutionary War; less has been recorded of the patriotism and devotion of the women who remained at home. We would not detract from the praise awarded the men who fought so bravely in the field, we glory in the inheritance handed down by them. We take great pride in the achievements of those men; they have made it possible for us to keep alive, by our organization, that spirit of patriotism. But let us consider, for a little, the part which the women took in that great struggle.
Long before hostilities broke out, the sentiment of freedom
was fostered in the dwellings of the entire people. It was not the strength of numbers, it was not the genius or the training of the colonists that enabled them to conquer their oppressors; but it was the principle of right which actuated them in the home and in the field, and which they were bound to protect. It was this sentiment then, this moral principle which was working among the people, and which the home nourished.
When the Stamp Act was passed and taxes were put upon tea and other things, the women as well as the men, were true to their convictions, and by agreeing not to buy, sell, or use the taxed articles, showed themselves ready to give up the gratification of their appetites and their pride in order to maintain this great principle. They gave up eating la
They gave up eating lamb and mutton in order that as much wool as possible might be producer for clothing. Mrs. Cushing wrote, “I hope there are none of us but would sooner wrap ourselves in sheep and goat skins than buy English goods of a people who have insulted us in such a scandalous manner.” All over the country, women formed societies called Daughters of Liberty. “Their individual action consisted in wearing garments of homespun manufacture, their concerted exertions in gathering in patriotic bands to spin, and the signing of compacts to drink no more of the taxed tea, that significant emblem of British injustice and American revolt."
Then the war-cloud finally burst, and the wives and mothers influenced and encouraged their husbands and sons to stand up for the right, and be willing to give even their blood to help vindicate the wrongs of the people. One wife's parting words to her husband were, "Remember to do your duty! I would rather hear you were left a corpse on the field, than that you had played the part of a coward." But in saying such words, the women also had as stern a duty as the men to perform, for they had to take up the plough as it was left in the field, and carry on the work of the farm alone. But there were no tasks those brave women shrank from. Even if it came to handling the musket, or firing the cannon, they were prepared; and yet with it all, they possessed that "beautiful womanliness which perpetually witnessed to a native worth of mind and spirit, that made them peers among the woman kind of all ages."
We have many instances in which the women did take the place of the men, flinching from no labor or sacrifice in the cause in which they were so enthusiastic. Deborah Samson felt impelled to take the part of a soldier, and if necessary, to shed her blood for her country. She was alone in the world and deeply regretted that she was able to do so little; thus with no feeling but the purest zeal and love of country, she gave three years to the service and did what she could.
Another example is that of Mrs. David Wright, of Pepperell, who, together with the neighboring women, after Colonel Prescott's regiment of minute men had departed, gathered at the bridge, armed themselves with guns, pitchforks, and whatever other weapons they could find, and choosing Mrs. Wright as their captain, determined that no foe to country should cross that bridge. Captain Whiting, a noted Tory, soon appeared on horseback, supposed to be conveying some treasonable despatches to the British. At the command of Mrs. Wright, he was arrested, searched, and a message was found, which was then carried to the Committee of Safety. In this way, the women saved the American Army from some disaster.
Many stories are told of brave women who safely carried important messages, oftentimes running great risks, but by their native tact and quick wit, saving themselves from detection. It is related of a young girl, Emily Geiger, how she offered to act as messenger for General Greene when the undertaking was so dangerous that it was very difficult to find a man willing to attempt the mission. General Greene was much pleased at the courage of the girl and consented to use her services. As she was riding through the country, full of bloodthirsty Tories, she was captured by the British scouts and shut up. But while she was waiting for a Tory woman to come and search her, she ate up the message, piece by piece, and thus saved herself from suspicions. She was allowed to go on, and arrived in safety at her destination, delivering Greene's message verbally.
One cannot help admiring such daring, such bravery, but of