face the enemy in an honest argument, he was not often on the ground to do so.
Now that the most potent cause of political agitation resides in the far-off problem of the Philippine Islands it is difficult to realize the popular excitement of those times, when both parties believed that the very existence of the nation depended on the result of the elections.
Professor Child was not the least of an alarmist, and deprecated all unnecessary controversy.
In 1861 he even cautioned Wendell Phillips Garrison against introducing too strong an appeal for emancipation in his commencement address; but he was as firm as a granite rock on any question of principle, and when he considered a protest in order he was certain to make one.
He did not trust party newspapers for his information, but obtained it from persons who were in a position to know, and his facts were so well supported by the quick sallies of his wit that those who interfered with him once rarely attempted it again.
and Carlyle; but whereas Emerson and Carlyle had differences of opinion, Sumner and Longfellow were always of one mind.
When Sumner made his Fanueil Hall speech against the fugitive slave law, which was simply fighting revolution with revolution, and Harvard College and the whole of Cambridge turned against him, Longfellow stood firm; and it may be suspected that he had many an unpleasant discussion with his aristocratic acquaintances on this point.
It was considered bad enough to support Garrison, but supporting Sumner was a great deal worse, for Sumner was an orator who wielded a power only inferior to Webster.
Fortunately for Longfellow, his connection with the university ceased not long after Sumner's election to the Senate; and the unpleasantness of his position may have been the leading cause of his retirement.
Sumner was the best friend Longfellow had, and perhaps the best that he could have had. There was Emerson, of course, and Longfellow was always on friendly terms wi
it, as Agassiz reconstructed an extinct species of mammal from fossil bones.
Lowell did not join the Free-soilers, who were now bearing the brunt of the anti-slavery conflict, but attached himself to the more aristocratic wing of the old abolitionists, which was led by Edmund Quincy, Maria Chapman, and L. Maria Child.
Lowell was far from being a non-resistant.
In fact, he might be called a fighting-man, although he disapproved of duelling; and this served to keep him at a distance from Garrison, of whom he wisely remarked that the nearer public opinion approached to him the further he retreated into the isolation of his own private opinions.
He wrote regularly for the Anti-Slavery Standard until 1851, when the death of his father-in-law supplied the long-desired means for a journey to Italy,--more desired perhaps for his wife's health than for his own gratification.
It may be the fault of his biographers, but I cannot discover that Lowell took any share in the opposition to the
His friends, too, at this time-Hillard, Felton, Liebe, and even Longfellow — were either opposed to introducing the slavery question into politics or practically indifferent to it.
On the other hand, Sumner never could agree with Garrison's position on this question.
He held the Constitution in too great respect to admit that it was an agreement with death and a government with the devil.
He believed that the founders of the Constitution were opposed to slavery, and that the expression, persons held to labor, was good evidence of this.
One of his finest orations in the Senate was intended to prove this point.
Furthermore he perceived the futility of Garrison's idea-and this was afterwards disproved by the war — that if it were not for the National Government the slaves would rise in rebellion and so obtain their freedom.
He always asserted that slavery would be abolished under the Constitution or not at all. Like Abraham Lincoln he waited for his time to come.
Governor and the General, in which the latter nearly reached the point of insubordination.
For excellent reasons this was not made public at the time, and is little known at the present day; but General Butler owed his prominence in the war wholly to Governor Andrew's appointment.
Another little-known incident was Andrew's action in regard to the meeting in memory of John Brown, which was held on December 2, 1861, by Wendell Phillips, F. B. Sanborn and others, who were mobbed exactly as Garrison was mobbed thirty years earlier.
The Mayor would do nothing to protect them, and when Wendell Phillips went to seek assistance from Andrew the latter declined to interfere.
It would be a serious matter to interfere with the Mayor, and he did not feel that the occasion demanded it. Moreover he considered the celebration at that time to be prejudicial to the harmony of the Union cause.
Phillips was already very much irritated and left the Governor's office in no friendly mood.