in the hands of his distinguished countryman, with this advice however, which we commend to his serious consideration, that before he again undertakes to write upon American constitutional questions, he will devote half an hour to the perusal of the Constitution
itself, and an equal space of time to the history of the events immediately preceding its adoption.
This will not indeed make him an able constitutional lawyer, but it may avail to save him from such gross and palpable blunders as those we have just been exposing.
A moderate degree of research into the events of the period of which he professes to write the history, would also have been advisable.
For example, a glance at the report of the committee appointed by a Republican House of Representatives, with a Republican at its head, to investigate the subject, would have saved him from the discredit of repeating, as he does more than once with all the unrestrained exultation of a violent partisan, the stale and groundless story of Secretary Floyd
's having used his official position to arm the South
and disarm the North
The report of this committee, which will hardly be suspected of undue partiality for General Floyd
, exonerated him fully from the charge, and to this we refer the Count
at his leisure.
It is hardly wise to be “plus rogaliste que le roi
Again, what idea would any reader unacquainted with the real course of events derive from this writer's account of the efforts at compromise made at the last session of Congress previous to the commencement of the war?
“With the exception of the secession leaders,” says he, “all parties were working sincerely to devise means for maintaining the Union
” (page 120). And again: “Congress was the arena where the antagonistic passions which developed themselves on every side struggled for the mastery, and attempts at conciliation were only brought forward to be defeated through the absolute pretension of the Southern
leaders” (page 128). All this in the teeth of the fact that every proposition looking to a compromise came from the South
; that the Crittenden resolutions were distinctly accepted by “the Southern
leaders,” received the vote of every Southern Senator
except those from South Carolina
, who had already vacated their seats, and were rejected by a united Republican vote, by which also Mr. Clark
's substitute, peremptorily closing the door to anything in the nature of a compromise, was adopted.
“The vote of the Republican
members of the Senate,” says a Massachusetts