* * * But yesterday it mightAssured of the integrity and patriotism of the President, and the wisdom of his cabinet, the North waited as only a brave people, conscious of their strength and of the justice of their cause, could afford to wait. The strength of the Government was gradually developed, the war and navy departments began to exhibit signs of life — and the great statesman of the West, who, sacrificing political ambition and personal preferences, had consented to preside over a depleted treasury, renewed the miracle attributed by Webster to Alexander Hamilton: “He smote the rock of the national resources, and abundant streams of revenue gushed forth. He touched the dead body of the public credit, and it sprang upon its feet.” Desperate as our situation seemed, capitalists demanded no other security than the name of Chase; and when he asked for a loan of eight millions, more than thirty millions were instantly offered. Gentlemen, I have not time to dwell on the attack on Sumter, the attack of ten thousand men on one hundred men, and the ill-judged boast of Governor Pickens that they had humbled the star spangled banner for the first time in seventy years. They themselves by that act and that boast initiated an irresistible conflict that will hardly cease till the Stars and Stripes again float in their beauty from every fortress in our land. That bombardment, as was remarked by one of the Judges of the Supreme Court, “blew all the plots of the traitors into the air, and inaugurated a change in the sentiment of the country that seemed all but miraculous.” It awoke the deep love of country which had slumbered beneath the platforms of party and commercial interest. It ended at once the absurd cry of “no coercion,” as applicable to a Government in enforcing its laws and protecting its existence. The rebels by that act closed the door of compromise and reconciliation which had thus far been kept open. They rejected the appeal to a convention of the American people, to which the President in his inaugural had assented — they selected instead the arbitrament of force, the great trial by battle. They struck at the very heart of the nation when they sought to humble the flag of our Union, that had protected them from infancy, and which from childhood we have loved. They themselves inaugurated war. They imposed upon us the most sacred duty that can devolve upon a people, of protecting their nationality, and the world that had. wondered at a forbearance which they could not understand, now wondered again at the spontaneous uprising of a mighty nation. The threatened attack on Washington, the disloyalty of Baltimore, the cutting off of all
Have stood against the world; now lies it there
And none so poor to do it reverence.
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