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between them. It is still in our power to direct the process of emancipation and deportation, peaceably, and in such slow degree, as that the evil will wear off insensibly, and their place be, pari passu, filled up by free white laborers. If, on the contrary, it is left to force itself on, human nature must shudder at the prospect held up. We should in vain look for an example in the Spanish deportation or deletion of the Moors. This precedent would fall far short of our case."
Mr. Douglas deemed Mr. Seward's view of the problem, microscopic; Jefferson's, telescopic :-the one, looking through a lens capable only of magnifying the object near the eyeproximate results; the other, standing upon a higher elevation and sweeping in a wider horizon with his larger glass, discerned things afar off-ultimate results. He believed that the only wise and safe way of getting rid of the institution was to leave the business exclusively in the hands of those most nearly affected by it, in all its relations—moral, social, economic-those who lived beneath its dark penumbra; and if the unfriendly hand of foreign interference were stayed, that they, themselves, would eventually destroy it-that it would melt away like frost-work under their own sun, and the civilized world thus be spared the spectacle of seeing it quenched in the blood of fratricidal war. It is unquestionably true, that, until maddened by what the southern people deemed the obtrusive intermeddling of a malignant philanthropy, the general drift of public sentiment was in opposition not only to the spread of African slavery, but to its existence anywhere. Many of the leading southern statesmen were its pronounced opponents. Even as late as 1832, Judge Gaston-clarum et venerabile nomen - addressing the literary societies of her university in presence of the educated mind of North Carolina, said: "On you, too, will devolve the duty, which has been too long neglected, but which cannot with impunity be neglected much longer, of providing for the mitigation, and (is it too much to hope for in North Carolina?) for the ultimate extirpation of the worst evil that afflicts the southern part of our confederacy. Full well do you know to what I refer; for on this subject there is
with all of us a morbid sensitiveness which gives warning even of an approach to it. Disguise the truth as we may, and throw the blame where we will, it is slavery which, more than any other cause, keeps us back in the career of improvement. It stifles industry and represses enterprise; it is fatal to economy and providence; it discourages skill, impairs our strength as a community, and poisons morals at the fountainhead. How this evil is to be encountered, how subdued, is indeed a difficult and delicate inquiry, which this is not the time to examine, nor the occasion to discuss. I felt, however, that I could not discharge my duty without referring to this subject, as one which ought to engage the prudence, moderation and firmness of those who sooner or later must act decisively upon it.” That Commencement address met with great popular favor; it went through five editions and received special and unqualified commendations from such southern-born men-slave-owners-as John Marshall, Nathaniel Macon, John Randall, Henry Clay, James L. Petigru, and others scarcely less influential and distinguished in public and professional life.
It is needless to advance, because impossible to determine, the question, whether African slavery would have been voluntarily abolished by the States in which it existed-each acting for itself. It was certainly worth the trial. One thing, however, is undeniably true: it was abolished in the worst possible way for all the sections and both races. Apart from the blood spilt, the bad passions kindled, the outrages perpetrated against citizen-liberty by both governments, the almost universal demoralization wrought by the strife-men are pretty well agreed now that the best of good bargains was hardly made when so many billions of not unproductive capital were exchanged for so many billions of public debt. Did four millions of slaves gain as much by the war as thirty millions of freemen lost by it? Time only can answer the question. The balance sheet is not yet made up; nor will it be for generations
Why any friend to the compromise of 1850 should have opposed the congressional territorial legislation of 1854, is a
puzzle to plain men. The fundamental, the animating principle involved in and controlling each case, was one and the same—absolute non-intervention. The identity of the cases is whole and perfect. The one was not the logical consequence merely of the other, as some have it; but the one was the other, and the other, the one-a common corpus, with the same root, trunk, stem-without a single new or additional shoot. It would baffle the dialectics of the schoolmen and tax to discomfiture the genius of the legal fraternity to vindicate the consistency of those that held up the hands of Mr. Douglas in 1850-then turned and hung him in effigy in 1854. How it was that such a total change came over the spirit of their dreams is more a matter of curious speculation than of profitable inquiry. Certain it is, he himself was the same man-unchanged in all respects, save in normal and healthy growth.
Four years later, the great body of the southern democracy, backed by the Federal Administration, advanced their line. They not only denied the right of the people of a territory, in their territorial legislature, to prohibit slavery, but a portion -the controlling portion-went farther and demanded congressional intervention to protect it until the people met in convention to frame a State Constitution, preparatory to admission into the Union. That demand-for any practical purpose utterly futile to affect slavery one way or the otherdisrupted the national organization. Mr. Douglas could not accede to it. He stood fast by the doctrine of strict congressional non-intervention, as he had proclaimed and maintained it since 1850. He was now as bitterly assailed by the ultra southern wing of his party, as he had before been by the northern extremists. The arts of flattery and of intimidation were alike impotent to seduce him from his propriety or drive him from his principles:
"In sight of mortal and immortal powers,
As in a boundless theatre, he ran
The great career of justice—
And through the mists of passion and of sense,
The Douglas-Lincoln canvass for senatorial honors in 1858 is without parallel in our history-whether considered in point of the intense and general interest and anxiety it excited; the ability, energy and acrimony with which it was conducted; or the immense importance of the stake at issue. The odds against Douglas were indeed fearful. The estrangement of the southern ultras, engendered of his course in the Lecompton business and the insensate cry against "squatter sovereignty"; the apathy-not to say hostility-of the Federal Administration; the doubting Thomases among his professed friends, were dead weight-so much extra lead-tied to his heels. To win success in such a struggle, required a combination of parts, qualities, faculties, rarely vouchsafed to mortal man. The occasion exacted, and he supplied, them in ample measure. It was the severest trial in his political career-a very experi mentum crucis applied to his metal. He knew it and met it manfully, bringing to his aid all his resources of body and mind. In the contest, he exhibited a power of physical endurance that seems incredible. The amount of mental labor he performed bordered on a psychological marvel; the courage of every type he displayed was more than Spartan; while the "faith he so sternly kept with his country and with his fame" is among the imperishable glories of the republic.
The United States Senate, during Douglas' term of service there, first and last, was made illustrious by a series of the greatest names on the roll of American statesmen and orators. It was the Golden Age of our senatorial glory. Without the emotional nature of Clay, the eloquent feeling of Webster, the metaphysical power of Calhoun, the prodigious learning of Benton, the ripe and bountiful culture of Berrien, the decorous and stately logic of Cass, the elaborate rhetoric of Sumner, the scholarly accomplishments of Everett, the ready subtle acumen of Seward, the intense passion and robust, fiery magnetism of Toombs-Douglas was a more formidable debater than any of them. He was in the American Senate' what Charles James Fox was in the British House of Commons -not as accomplished or attractive in debate, possibly, but equally as powerful and effective-certainly more successful
He was not afraid of the drudgery of legislation; he never shunned nor slighted the irksome work of the committeeroom; for impatient of, and averse to, that sort of employment as he confessedly was, he met his appointments with rare punctuality. His labors there, though more obscure, were more useful; and the influence he exerted, in shaping and securing legislation, was greater than in his public displays in the senate-chamber. Always intent on carrying his point, and perfectly content with doing so, he adopted the surest means of reaching it; little caring whether he himself should appear in the foreground or the background of the picture-before the lights or behind the curtain.
Still, he was unusually susceptible to downright flattery. Praise was extremely grateful to him; he coveted fame; he loved power; he was willing to sacrifice anything, save truth, for triumph. Possibly, he was sometimes over-eager in its pursuit. But it was the just consciousness of his own powers and parts that made him "not unmindful of the opportunities of glory," which others had laid hold of and turned to account -just as the trophies of Miltiades disturbed the dreams of Themistocles. Yet it was a "noble and austere ambition " that stirred the divinity within-the ambition of Camillus, not of Cæsar. He aspired to the presidency, and made no secret of it. The office was not above his capacity or deserts. In it, he would have asserted himself the full equal in administrative talent and tact of any incumbent since the days of Jefferson. That he would have attained it but for the inopportune and unhappy disruption of the democracy at Charleston in 1860, we firmly believe.
Mr. Douglas cared as little for money as Sheil said Lord Norbury cared for life. He despised affluence, for affluence's sake" not setting the value of a pin's fee on it." Yet, while almost prodigal in spending money, he was as just as he was generous-rare alliance of diverse dispositions and habits. He gave away more to others than he spent on himself. His charities-often indiscreetly, always indiscriminately, never ostentatiously bestowed-were circumscribed only by his means; nor would he let his left-hand know what his right-hand