previous next
[99] Charles Devens, an officer in service, a Republican by political connection, but of limited political activity, and the Democrats adopted him and the other candidates named by the People's Party.1 The movement had the important aid of the Springfield Republican, whose proprietor was absent for a vacation in Europe, and who lived to regret the part his journal took in the canvass.2 Ultra-conservatism made its last struggle; and conspicuous among its leaders was Professor Joel Parker of Cambridge, whose judicial temper was upset by Sumner's ‘State-suicide’ doctrine, and who combined with his ability as a jurist antipathy to those who found more power in the Constitution to deal with slavery than he could find.3 As soon as the opposition began to show itself there was a rally on the other side. Sumner could always rely upon a reserved force among the people, a force consisting of those with whom the moral sentiments were uppermost,—Liberty Party men of 1844, Conscience Whigs of 1845 to 1847, Free Soilers of 1848 and 1852,—classes abounding in men of intellectual vigor. They comprised the clergy in large numbers, teachers of advanced schools, and most of the editors of the country press. If idealists, they were not idealists only, and they were a match—for practised party men in using effectively the weapons of political warfare. As a body they were governed by no selfish considerations, and they went into a contest with a determined spirit, which meant not only the support of their own candidate, but war upon his assailants. They were to be feared beyond their numbers in any conflict in which they took part, and politicians looking to preferment thought it prudent not to put themselves in their way.

This body of Sumner's supporters, it should be remembered, was made up of men to whom he had never done a favor by help to office or otherwise, and who expected no such favor in the future; but during his career, at the slightest warning of

1 The People's Party, at a mass convention in Springfield. October 24, presented as candidate for senator C. F. Adams; but at his instance his name was withdrawn by his son. (Boston Advertiser, October 28.) The hostile movement outside of the party was thought to have helped Sumner within it. Boston Advertiser, October 14, November 5.

2 ‘Life and Times of Samuel Bowles,’ vol. i. pp. 357-359. Dr. Holland, who was antipathetic to Sumner, was at this time the managing editor. The ‘Republican,’ in 1862, opposed an emancipation policy.

3 A coadjutor and townsman of Judge Parker, John C. Dodge, who was an eminent lawyer, confessed, after reading the first two volumes of this Memoir, in a letter to the author, that he had misjudged Sumner for many years, and now saw his character in a better light.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Springfield, Mo. (Missouri, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
George Sumner (6)
Joel Parker (2)
Henry Holland (1)
John C. Dodge (1)
Charles Devens (1)
Samuel Bowles (1)
Charles Francis Adams (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
1862 AD (1)
1852 AD (1)
1848 AD (1)
1847 AD (1)
1845 AD (1)
1844 AD (1)
November 14th (1)
October 28th (1)
October 24th (1)
October (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: