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John Adams (search for this): chapter 25
a self-determining political body. The blow which proceeded from John Adams, felled the proprietary authority in Pennsylvania and Maryland toe minister of the third Presbyterian church in Philadelphia, with John Adams for a listener, drew a parallel between George the Third and Phar consideration and approbation. The resolutions were seconded by John Adams; and the members were enjoined to attend punctually the next day iew of his obligation to resist independence. On the other hand, John Adams defended the proposed measures as objects of the most stupendous armony with the proposed resolution. On the next day, Jefferson, John Adams, Franklin, Sherman, and Robert R. Livingston were chosen by balloh foreign powers, was intrusted by ballot to Dickinson, Franklin, John Adams, Harrison, and Robert Morris; and between John Adams and DickinsoJohn Adams and Dickinson there was no difference of opinion that the scheme to be proposed should be confined to commerce, without any grant of exclusive privileges
James Wilson (search for this): chapter 25
the consideration of Richard Henry Lee's resolve, and the long debate which ensued was the most copious and the most animated ever held on the subject. The argument on the part of its opponents was sustained by Robert Livingston of New York, by Wilson, Dickinson, and Edward Rutledge. They made no objection to a confederacy, and to sending a project of a treaty by proper persons to France; but they contended that a declaration of independence would place America in the power of the British, withat it required the impudence of a New Englander, for them in their disjointed state to propose a treaty to a nation now at peace; that no reason could be assigned for pressing into this measure but the reason of every madman, a show of spirit. Wilson avowed that the removal of the restriction on his vote by the Chap. LXV.} 1776 June. Pennsylvania assembly on that morning, did not change his view of his obligation to resist independence. On the other hand, John Adams defended the proposed m
George Duffield (search for this): chapter 25
reunion with Great Britain. Meanwhile the governor was required to leave the province; and the only powers actually in being were the deputies in congress, the council of safety, and the convention. In Pennsylvania, the preamble, which was published on the morning of the sixteenth, was cited by the popular party as a dissolution of the proprietary government and a direction to institute a new one under the authority of the people. On the next day, which was kept as a national fast, George Duffield, the minister of the third Presbyterian church in Philadelphia, with John Adams for a listener, drew a parallel between George the Third and Pharaoh, and inferred that the same providence of God which had rescued the Israelites, intended to free the Americans. On the twenty fourth a town meeting of more than four thousand men was held in the state-house yard, to confront the instructions of the assembly against independence with the vote of the continental congress against oaths of all
s the consummation of a revolution, the most complete, unexpected, and remarkable, of any in the history of nations. The power of all New England, Virginia, and Georgia was put forth on the same side; and the discussion was kept up till seven in the evening. A majority of the colonies, including North Carolina, appeared to be unalterably fixed in favor of an immediate declaration of independence; but the vote on the question was postponed till Monday. On the day of rest which intervened, Keith, the British minister at the court of Vienna, obtained an audience of Joseph the Second, and afterwards of the empress Maria Theresa. The emperor referred to the proclamation which the joint sovereigns had issued, most strictly prohibiting all commerce between their subjects in the Low Countries and the rebel colonies in America, and went on to say: I am very sorry for the difficulties which have arisen to distress the king's government; the cause in which he is engaged, is in fact the caus
Joseph Reed (search for this): chapter 25
members of the assembly became uneasy: in June. the first days of June no quorum appeared; on the fifth the proceedings of Virginia, directing her delegates to propose independence, were read in the house. No answer was returned; but a petition from Cumberland county, asking that the instructions to the delegates of Pennsylvania might be withdrawn, was read a second time, and a committee of seven was appointed to bring in new instructions. Of its members, among whom were Dickinson, Morris, Reed, Clymer, and one or two loyalists, all but Clymer were, for the present, opposed to independence. The instructions of Pennsylvania, which they reported on the sixth, conceded that the revolutionists were in the right; that all hopes of a reconciliation, on reasonable terms, were extinguished; and nevertheless, with a full knowledge that the king would Chap. LXV.} 1776. June. not yield, they expressed their ardent desire for an end of the civil war; while they expressly sanctioned a conf
Samuel Adams (search for this): chapter 25
se he represented Virginia from which the proposition had gone forth, and because he had been elected by the largest number of votes. On the twelfth the office of digesting the form of a confederation to be entered into between the colonies, was referred to a committee of one member from each colony; and as if the subject had not been of transcendant importance, the appointment of the committee was left to the presiding officer. Among those whom Hancock selected are found the names of Samuel Adams, Dickinson, and Edward Rutledge: it could have been wished that the two Adamses had changed places, though probably the result would at that time have been the same; no one man had done Chap LXV.} 1776 June. so much to bring about independence as the elder Adams; but his skill in constructing governments, not his knowledge of the principles of freedom, was less remarkable than that of his younger kinsman. In the committee, Dickinson, who, as an opponent of independence, could promote o
Robert Livingston (search for this): chapter 25
prietary party, had put themselves in the wrong both theoretically and practically; at once conceding the impossibility of reconciliation, and, by their indecision, entailing on Pennsylvania years of distraction and bitter strife. At ten on the same day congress entered into the consideration of Richard Henry Lee's resolve, and the long debate which ensued was the most copious and the most animated ever held on the subject. The argument on the part of its opponents was sustained by Robert Livingston of New York, by Wilson, Dickinson, and Edward Rutledge. They made no objection to a confederacy, and to sending a project of a treaty by proper persons to France; but they contended that a declaration of independence would place America in the power of the British, with whom she was to negotiate; give her enemy notice to counteract her intentions before she had taken steps to carry them into execution; and expose her to ridicule in the eyes of foreign powers by prematurely attempting
Daniel Roberdau (search for this): chapter 25
and men was held in the state-house yard, to confront the instructions of the assembly against independence with the vote of the continental congress against oaths of allegiance and the exercise of any kind of authority under the crown. It was called to order by John Bayard, the chairman of the committee of inspection for the county of Philadelphia, a patriot of singular purity of character and disinterestedness, personally brave, pensive, earnest, and devout; it selected for its president Daniel Roberdau; Chap. LXV.} 1776. May. and it voted unanimously, that the instructions withdrew the province from the happy union with the other colonies; that the present assembly was not elected for the purpose of forming a new government; and, with but one dissentient voice, it further voted that the house of assembly, not having the authority of the people for that purpose, could not proceed to form a new government without usurpation. As a consequence, the committee of the city and libert
Edward Rutledge (search for this): chapter 25
The argument on the part of its opponents was sustained by Robert Livingston of New York, by Wilson, Dickinson, and Edward Rutledge. They made no objection to a confederacy, and to sending a project of a treaty by proper persons to France; but the and expose her to ridicule in the eyes of foreign powers by prematurely attempting to bring them into an alliance. Edward Rutledge said privately, that it required the impudence of a New Englander, for them in their disjointed state to propose a te obedience and tranquillity restored to every quarter of the British dominions. When the congress met on Monday, Edward Rutledge, without much expectation of success, moved that the question should be postponed three weeks, while in the mean timeft to the presiding officer. Among those whom Hancock selected are found the names of Samuel Adams, Dickinson, and Edward Rutledge: it could have been wished that the two Adamses had changed places, though probably the result would at that time h
George Clymer (search for this): chapter 25
rland county, asking that the instructions to the delegates of Pennsylvania might be withdrawn, was read a second time, and a committee of seven was appointed to bring in new instructions. Of its members, among whom were Dickinson, Morris, Reed, Clymer, and one or two loyalists, all but Clymer were, for the present, opposed to independence. The instructions of Pennsylvania, which they reported on the sixth, conceded that the revolutionists were in the right; that all hopes of a reconciliatioClymer were, for the present, opposed to independence. The instructions of Pennsylvania, which they reported on the sixth, conceded that the revolutionists were in the right; that all hopes of a reconciliation, on reasonable terms, were extinguished; and nevertheless, with a full knowledge that the king would Chap. LXV.} 1776. June. not yield, they expressed their ardent desire for an end of the civil war; while they expressly sanctioned a confederation, and treaties with foreign kingdoms and states, they neither advised nor forbade a declaration of independence, trusting to the ability, prudence, and integrity of their delegates. Now the opinion of the majority of those delegates was notorious;
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