A sporting-house which he opened became a Democratic rendezvous and the headquarters of the Empire Club
, an organization of roughs and desperadoes who acknowledged his ‘captaincy.’
His campaigning in behalf of Polk
in 1844 secured him the friendly1
patronage of the successful candidate for Vice-President
and he took office as Weigher in the Custom-house
of the metropolis.
He found time, while thus employed, to engineer the Astor Place
riot on behalf of the actor3 Forrest
against his English rival Macready
, on May 10, 1849, and the year 1850 opened with his trial for this4
atrocity and his successful defence by John Van Buren
On February 16 he and his Club broke up an anti-Wilmot5
Proviso meeting in New York—a seeming inconsistency, but it was charged against Rynders
that he had offered6
to ‘give the State of New York
’ in the election of 1844 for $30,000, and met with a reluctant refusal.
In March he was arrested for a brutal assault on a gentleman7
in a hotel, but the victim and the witnesses found it prudent not to appear against a ruffian who did not hesitate to threaten the district-attorney
in open court.
Meanwhile, the new Whig Administration quite justifiably discharged Rynders
from the Custom-house
, leaving him free to pose as a saviour of the Union
against traitors—a saviour of society against blasphemers and infidels wherever encountered.
There was a manifest disinterestedness, therefore, in his vindication, at the Tabernacle, of the President
who had thrown him back upon his resources as a blackleg and bravo.
We left him pushing his way to the front of the platform, with menace in his stride, his uplifted arm, the bellow of his voice.
This, according to the Herald
, was what greeted Mr. Garrison
Captain Rynders (clenching his fist)—I will not allow8 you to assail the President of the United States.
You shan't do it (shaking his fist at Mr. Garrison).
many voices—Turn him out, turn him out!
Captain Rynders—If a million of you were there, I would