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[33] Wheaton,1 then recently deceased, which set forth his services as a practical diplomatist and a writer on the Law of Nations. He became in his youth acquainted with Mr. Wheaton, but the acquaintance did not then ripen into intimacy. Such, however, was his great interest in that publicist's favorite topics that his tribute was appreciative and generous.

In 1848 Sumner prepared a report2 for a legislative committee, to which was referred the subject of arranging a system for the organization and discipline of the militia. It treated at length the constitutional question involved, and affirmed as the conclusion that with Congress is the exclusive power to organize and discipline the national militia, while the State retains ample power to provide a local force, or internal police, for maintaining ‘order and the supremacy of the law.’ His draft at one time appeared likely to be accepted by the committee, but it was finally laid aside.3 Some of the points of his paper were used five years later in his speech in the Massaclusetts Constitutional Convention.4

Among the matters aside from the slavery question and prison discipline in which Sumner was interested during the years 1845-1850, was the peaceful settlement; of the Oregon question, in relation to which he corresponded with English friends and Mr. Winthrop; the administration of Edward Everett, as President of Harvard College, whose inauguration he attended April 30, 1846, and with whom he continued to exchange notes and courtesies; Horace Mann's labors in behalf of popular education; the literary success of his friends,—of Prescott, who early in the summer of 1847 published his ‘Peru,’ and soon after began his ‘Philip II.;’ of Emerson, who issued a volume of poems early in 1847, and delivered a course of lectures in Boston which Sumner attended; of Agassiz and Hillard, to the lectures of both of whom in 1847 before the Lowell Institute he

1 Boston Advertiser, March 16, 1848. Works, vol. II. pp. 63-73. Sumner, when in Paris in 1836, entertained the purpose of competing for a prize on the history of the law of nations since the Peace of Westphalia, which had been offered by the French Academy of Moral and Political Science, but his plan of travel interfered with his entering the competition. Mr. Wheaton, then in Paris, whom he had consulted as to his purpose, afterwards sent in a paper which became the basis of his ‘History of the Progress of the Law of Nations since the Peace of Westphalia.’ Letter of Sumner, Nov. 22, 1865, to S. A. Allibone, published in the latter's ‘Dictionary of Authors,’ title ‘Henry Wheaton,’ p. 2668.

2 In manuscript.

3 The committee's report and the minority's report are in House Doc., 1848, nos. 152,176.

4 June 21 and 22, 1853. Works, vol. III. pp. 216-220, 221-227.

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