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[27] on Foote's resolution, saying that ‘the debate will be noticed in the history of our Union; and in that history you will appear as a man fulfilling the duty of your station, faithful to your country and to your own character.’

Sheriff Sumner was in favor of a strong government both for the nation and the State. He was greatly disturbed by the mobs which were frequent in American cities from 1834 to 1838, and which usually grew out of Slavery, religious antipathies, or criminal trials; and he insisted often on a more vigorous police.

As early as 1830, he took an active interest in the temperance question;1 and, in the years immediately succeeding, delivered lectures, in which he enforced the duty of sobriety.2 He favored the restrictive legislation of 1837-38, and insisted on the immorality of licensing the sale of ardent spirits.

He promoted the improvement of public schools. In 1818, when there were only five such schools in Boston, and these were crowded, he published several newspaper articles, in which he urged additional schools and an increase in the number of teachers for each.3

Sheriff Sumner attended, in his early manhood, the services of the Protestant Episcopal Church, at Trinity Church, of which Rev. Dr. Gardiner was the rector. He was at one time the clerk; and, after the English style, had an elevated seat near the chancel, from which he made responses. About 1825, he began to attend at King's Chapel (Unitarian), of which Rev. F. W. P. Greenwood was the pastor. Here the family retained their pew till the death of his widow, in 1866. His religious belief was quite indefinite. He was indulgent to all shades of doctrine. He welcomed the Catholics when there were few in Boston. Once he discontinued a newspaper, on account of its attacks upon them. His feelings were strongly excited by the destruction of the Ursuline Convent at Charlestown by a mob, in August, 1834; and he sent thirty dollars, the amount he had received for a special official service, to Bishop Fenwick, to be used in aid of the sufferers. While disinclined to attend public dinners, he accepted an invitation to attend one given by the Irish Charitable Society, in 1830, at the Exchange Coffee-House, on St. Patrick's Day. When called on to respond to a sentiment,

1 Article on exclusion of bars from theatres, in ‘Commercial Gazette,’ Nov. 8, 1830.

2 At Holliston, May 4, 1831; Boston, June 2, 1833.

3 Boston Yankee, May 15, June 11 and 18, July 2, 9, and 23.

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