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[482] the speakers, as was also Benjamin F. Hallett, editor of the Daily Advocate, who, in reporting the proceedings in his paper, said they meant to build ‘a new Cradle of Liberty,’ ‘where free discussion, and not the caprices of deacons, and committees, and aldermen, shall be the presiding genius; where the Constitution, and not the constable, shall be consulted whether it will do to discuss such and such principles for fear of a mob. Mobs are the fruits of checking free discussion. . . . You can never get up a mob in Boston to repress free discussion, even of heresy and error.’ His brother-editor of the Commercial Gazette, however, knew Boston better when, with reference to this very movement on the part of the abolitionists, he called on ‘all good citizens to combine for1 the purpose of putting down their nefarious transactions’; and again, on the 4th of July, when, the editor of the Liberator delivering an address at Julien Hall, the Gazette proposed throwing ‘the mischievous Garrison2 and his hearers overboard like the tea spilt in Boston Harbor during the Revolution. ‘A cold bath would do them good.’

Two influences Boston could not escape: one, the example of Congress in repressing free speech; the other, the example of sister cities carried away by Southern panic. On February 2, Mr. Dickson, of New York,3 presented in the House of Representatives the petition of eight hundred ladies for the abolition of slavery in the District of Columbia, and, in a favorable speech, asserting the power of Congress in the premises, moved its reference to a select committee; but the House, by a three-fifths vote, chose to lay it on the table. On February 11, like petitions were presented in the Senate4 from Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Maine, and referred to the Committee on the District. More petitions reached the House on the 16th, this time from Massachusetts also,5 and now the resentment of the South, feeling the censure involved in the proposed action in the District, could no longer be contained. Clay, of Alabama, said the antislavery

1 Lib. 5.105.

2 Lib. 5.109.

3 Lib. 5.26, 30.

4 Lib. 5.30.

5 Lib. 5.31.

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