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Edward L. Pierce, Memoir and letters of Charles Sumner: volume 4, Chapter 44: Secession.—schemes of compromise.—Civil War.—Chairman of foreign relations Committee.—Dr. Lieber.—November, 1860April, 1861. (search)
I would protest with all my power against the surrender of New Mexico to slavery,—than which it is difficult for me to conceive of anything more repugnant to our professions before the people, as well as against an amendment of the national Constitution touching slavery in the States. Other correspondents who condemned all compromise were B. R. Wood and G. E. Baker of Albany; David Dudley Field and Joshua Leavitt of New York; F. W. Bird, G. S. Boutwell, W. Claflin, J. T. Buckingham, Dr. Samuel Cabot, and E. L. Pierce of Massachusetts. The various schemes of compromise, agitated in the winter of 1860-1861, had no sensible effect in appeasing the Southern temper, and probably never varied the course of a single Southern man; and they dropped from the controversy when armed conflict opened at Fort Sumter. The Union was to be maintained not by fencing with propositions, but by the patriotism and endurance of the free States. Sumner during this anxious period conferred often wit