If, on the other hand, the destruction of the murderer of Hammond was the act, as I have said, of the many — of the multitude, in the ordinary sense of these words — not the act of numerable and ascertainable malefactors, but of congregated thousands, seized upon and impelled by that mysterious, metaphysical, and almost electric frenzy, which, in all ages and nations, has hurried on the infuriated multitude to deeds of death and destruction — then, I say, act not at all in the matter; the case then transcends1 your jurisdiction — it is beyond the reach of human law!!!On this charge, Mr. Lovejoy commented with entire unreserve; whereupon a mob surrounded and tore down his office — although, in the issue which contained his strictures, he had announced his decision to remove the paper to Alton, believing that it would be there more useful and better supported than at St. Louis. His first issue at Alton is dated September 8th. Meantime, his press was taken from St. Louis, by steamboat, to Alton, and landed on the bank about daylight on Sunday morning. It lay there in safety through the Sabbath; but, before the next morning, it had been destroyed by some five or six individuals. On Monday, a meeting of citizens was held, and a pledge voluntarily given to make good to Mr. Lovejoy his loss. The meeting passed some resolutions condemnatory of Abolitionism, and Mr. Lovejoy assured them that he had not come to Alton to establish an abolition, but a religious, journal; that he was not an Abolitionist, as they understood the term, but was an uncompromising enemy of Slavery, and so expected to live and die. He started for Cincinnati to procure new printing materials, was taken sick on the way, and, upon reaching Louisville, on his return, was impelled by increasing illness to stop. He remained there sick, in the house of a friend, for a week, and was still quite ill after his return. The Observer was issued regularly
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