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arry that insulted bunting to the Gulf, treading down dissensions and prejudices harder to conquer than Confederate cannon. We cannot afford to close any school which teaches such lessons. Go ask the Londoner, crowded into small space, what number of pounds laid down on a square foot, what necessities of business, would induce him to pull down the Tower and build a counting-house on its site! Go ask Paris what they will take from some business corporation for the spot where Mirabeau and Danton, or, later down, Lamartine saved the great flag of the tricolor from being drenched in the blood of their fellow-citizens! What makes Boston a history? Not so many men, not so much commerce. It is ideas. You might as well plough it with salt, and remove bodily into the more healthy elevation of Brookline or Dorchester, but for State Street, Faneuil Hall, and the Old South! What does Boston mean? Since 1630, the living fibre running through history which owns that name, means jealousy
The old South meeting House (1876). An address delivered in the Old South Meeting-House, June 4, 1876, and revised by Mr. Phillips. It was in this building that he made his last public address,--the tribute to Harriet Martineau, which closes this volume,--December 26, 1883. Ladies and Gentlemen: Why are we here to-day? Why should this relic, a hundred years old, stir your pulses to-day so keenly? We sometimes find a community or an individual with their hearts set on some old roof or great scene; and as we look on, it seems to us an exaggerated feeling, a fond conceit, an unfounded attachment, too emphatic value set on some ancient thing or spot which memory endears to them. But we have a right to-day — this year we have a right beyond all question, and with no possibility of exaggerating the importance of the hour — to ask the world itself to pause when this nation completes the first hundred years of its life; because these forty millions of people have at last achiev
s an actual, real, every-day possibility. Look back over the history of the race; where will you find a chapter that precedes us in that achievement? Greece had her republics, but they were the republics of one freeman and tel slaves; and the battle of Marathon was fought by slaves unchained from the door-posts of their masters' houses. Italy had her republics: they were the republics of wealth and skill and family, limited and aristocratic. She had not risen to a sublime faith in man. Holland had her republic, the republic of guilds and landholders, trusting the helm of State to property and education. And all these which at their best held but a million or two within their narrow limits, have gone down in the ocean of time. A hundred cars ago our fathers announced this sublime, and, as it seemed then, foolhardy declaration,--that God intended all men to be free and equal: all men, without restriction, without qualification, without limit. A hundred years have rolled away s
Wendell Phillips (search for this): chapter 21
The old South meeting House (1876). An address delivered in the Old South Meeting-House, June 4, 1876, and revised by Mr. Phillips. It was in this building that he made his last public address,--the tribute to Harriet Martineau, which closes this volume,--December 26, 1883. Ladies and Gentlemen: Why are we here to-day? Why should this relic, a hundred years old, stir your pulses to-day so keenly? We sometimes find a community or an individual with their hearts set on some old roof or great scene; and as we look on, it seems to us an exaggerated feeling, a fond conceit, an unfounded attachment, too emphatic value set on some ancient thing or spot which memory endears to them. But we have a right to-day — this year we have a right beyond all question, and with no possibility of exaggerating the importance of the hour — to ask the world itself to pause when this nation completes the first hundred years of its life; because these forty millions of people have at last achieve
ruggle the race has ever made for the liberties of man. You spend half a million for a schoolhouse. What school so eloquent to educate citizens as these walls? Napoleon turned his Simplon road aside to save a tree Caesar had once mentioned. Won't you turn a street or spare a quarter of an acre to remind boys what sort of men their fathers were? Think twice before you touch these walls. We are only the world's trustees. The Old South no more belongs to us than Luther's, or Hampden's, or Brutus's name does to Germany, England, or Rome. Each and all are held in trust as torchlight guides and inspiration for any man struggling for justice, and ready to die for the truth. I went to Chicago more than twenty years ago; and they showed me the log-house, thirty feet square and twenty feet high, in which the first officer of the United States, the first white man, lived, where now are half a million of human beings. There it nestled amid spacious inns, costly warehouses, and luxurious
he memory of State Street and Faneuil Hall and the Old South Church. We had a signal prominence in those early days. It was not our merit; it was an accident perhaps. But it was a great accident in our favor that the British Parliament chose Boston as the first and prominent object of its wrath. It was on the men of Boston that Lord North visited his revenge. It was our port that was to be shut, and its commerce annihilated. It was Sam Adams and John Hancock who enjoy the everlasting reward of being the only names excepted from the royal proclamation of forgiveness. It was only an accident; but it was an accident which, in the stirring history of the most momentous change the world has seen, placed Boston in the van. Naturally, therefore, in our streets and neighborhood came the earliest collision between England and the Colonies. Here Sam Adams, the ablest and ripest statesman God gave to the epoch, forecast those measures which welded thirteen Colonies into one thunderbo
the Old State House and these walls, as a quickening inspiration, before they leave these streets to go down and show themselves worthy of their fathers. Let these walls stand, if only to remind us that, in those days, Adams and Otis, advocates of the newest and extremest liberty, found their sturdiest allies in the pulpit; that our Revolution was so much a crusade that the Church led the van. Summon it again, ye venerable walls, to its true place in the world's toil for good! Give us Mayhews and Coopers again; and let the children of the Pilgrims show that religious conviction, veneration for the great of old, and a stern purpose that our flag shall everywhere and always mean justice, are a threefold cord holding this nation together, never to be broken. We have a great future before us,--how grand, human forecast cannot measure,--yes, a great future endangered by many and grave perils. Our way out of these, faith believes in, but mortal eye cannot see. It is wisdom to summon
ltar; we submit. God is not worshipped in temples builded with men's hands; and when their tower lifted itself in proud beauty to the heavens, and varied stone and rich woods furnished a new shelter for the descendants of Eckley, and Prince, and Sewall and the others that worshipped here, the consecration that the Puritans gave these walls — to Christ and the Church-was annulled. But these walls received as real a consecration when Adams and Otis dedicated them to liberty. We do not come here because there went hence to heaven the prayers of Sewall and Prince and the early saints of the colony. We come to save walls that heard and stirred the eloquence of Quincy,--that keen blade which so soon wore out the scabbard,--determined, under God, that wheresoever, whensoever, or howsoever we shall be called to make our exit, we will die freemen! These arches will speak to us, as long as they stand, of the sublime and sturdy religious enthusiasm of Adams; of Otis's passionate eloquence
George Washington (search for this): chapter 21
sooner than anything else, the old lullaby,--How doth the little busy bee Improve each shining hour, And gather honey all the day From every opening flower. It is industry; it is thrift; it is comfort; it is wealth. But on Bunker Hill let somebody point out to you the church-tower whose lantern told Paul Revere that Middlesex was to be invaded. Search till your eye rests on this tiny spire which trembled once when the mock Indian whoop bade England defiance. There is the elm where Washington first drew his sword. Here Winter Hill, whose cannon-ball struck Brattle-Street Church. At your feet the sod is greener for the blood of Warren, which settled it forever that no more laws were to be made for us in London. The thrill you feel is that sentiment which, in 1862, made twenty million men, who had wrangled for forty years, close up their angry ranks and carry that insulted bunting to the Gulf, treading down dissensions and prejudices harder to conquer than Confederate cannon.
de twenty million men, who had wrangled for forty years, close up their angry ranks and carry that insulted bunting to the Gulf, treading down dissensions and prejudices harder to conquer than Confederate cannon. We cannot afford to close any school which teaches such lessons. Go ask the Londoner, crowded into small space, what number of pounds laid down on a square foot, what necessities of business, would induce him to pull down the Tower and build a counting-house on its site! Go ask Paris what they will take from some business corporation for the spot where Mirabeau and Danton, or, later down, Lamartine saved the great flag of the tricolor from being drenched in the blood of their fellow-citizens! What makes Boston a history? Not so many men, not so much commerce. It is ideas. You might as well plough it with salt, and remove bodily into the more healthy elevation of Brookline or Dorchester, but for State Street, Faneuil Hall, and the Old South! What does Boston mean?
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