« ForrigeFortsett »
dissolution of the Union, they saved it from the assaults of their opponents at another That the Constitution of the United States, is peculiarly their's — That the Navy and its glories, are in a peculiar sense their's, and that if in the late Stages of the French Revolution, the horror of its excesses, and the terror of its gigantic despotism drove them into a delirium of subserviency to England, the delirium of their antagonists in favour of that same Revolution in its earlier stages, was equally extravagant, and of a tendency not less pernicious. A faithful and impartial, and philosophical history of our Parties, from the formation of our Union would be a most valuable and instructive work, and the time is now come when it might be written without danger to the author. Carey's Olive Branch' is an imperfect attempt at such a work, and is already at its tenth Edition. But one great defect of that Book, is that Carey, born an Irishman, has always been himself in this Country a violent partizan of the democratic party, and that all his acknowledgments of faults on that side are apologies ; while all his enumerations of faults on the other side are charges. The essential Spirit of all confession is palliative; that of all accusation is aggravating. Carey's book would be a proof of this, if it were not in proof from almost every thing else. And as to philosophical speculation, reference to the general principles of human Nature, or comparison with the operations of party in other free Nations, or delineations of individual characters, no such thing is to be found in the book. It is an old joke that a good historian ought to have neither religion nor Country ; but it is hardly to be expected that an impartial history of a struggle between two parties should be written by an actor in one of them.
I regret very much not having seen the printed vote of the Central Committee to which you allude; but after the secession of two such members as Gen! Welles and Major Russell, I can scarcely conceive the blindness of the rest in pushing their Candidate against M' Mason. This however appears to me clear That it has broken their line, and if the republicans continue their party management in the same Spirit, they cannot fail to have the very next year the Majority in both branches of the Legislature ; the selection of the Council; and with regard to the town of Boston, from henceforth the full weight to which they are entitled by their numbers, and by the respectability of character of those whom they recognize as their leaders.
I should think the second of the two plans, suggested by you as likely to be adopted at the next Spring Elections, as in every point of view the best ; and particularly since this election of M' Mason to Congress. First because I trust he will be a very weighty and influential member of the House of Representatives, and should exceedingly regret the loss of his Services there so soon. I have understood that M Brooks ? serves with some reluctance in the Office of Governor, and would probably not chuse
* The Olive Branch, by Mathew Carey, a well-known book (1814 and many later editions).
? John Brooks, 1752-1825, governor 1816-1823.
to continue in service long. He could have no better successor than M' Mason, whose service in the meantime in Congress will I trust be as useful even to the State as it would be in the Governor's Chair. Secondly, I doubt whether the Republicans could split hairs of principle with sufficient accuracy to find a distinction, upon which they could justify themselves in turning out M Brooks, to put M Mason in his place. If during the late War, M'Brooks, was in some degree implicated in the misconduct of the Massachusetts State Government, by his official Situation, his Sentiments were undoubtedly the same as those of M' Mason. His situation may have prevented him from expressing them so freely; but what censure upon the policy of his predecessor could have been stronger, or
ore keenly felt, than his Silence, concerning it, and the totally different policy that he announced in his first Speech to the Legislature. Nor can I forget that in that very war, he had a son, who died in the Cause of the Country. Thirdly, I think you would still fail in carrying the Election against Brooks. By adopting him they the Republicans would make another and most effectual step towards conciliation, and harmony; and could scarcely fail to carry a majority into both branches of the Legislature. I can scarcely imagine how this should be more difficult to accomplish throughout the State ; than it would be for the Republicans to set up another federalist, merely for the sake of displacing Brooks.
Enough upon a subject which as you observe is out of my Sphere. From a Conversation that I have had with the President, I am apprehensive that when Ebeling's Library comes, I shall have it left upon my hands. I should be glad of this if I could afford either the prime cost of it, or a place where it could be safely kept, till I shall have leisure to make suitable use of it myself. But as my means are not adequate to this, I expect to be under the necessity of disposing of the Books or of the greatest part of them, upon the best terms that I can obtain. My determination to purchase them was founded upon the Confidence that I reposed in your brother's judgment, and a feeling of shame that such a Collection, so peculiarly interesting to this Country, in a National point of view, should be lost to it, and scattered over Europe for the want of a few thousand Dollars. But the President is of opinion that 150 Volumes would comprize all the books relating to America, worth having in the Library of Congress, and probably three fourths of them are already there. My deference to his judgment has very much staggered my Confidence in my own, and a little damped the sanguine temper with which I had entered into yours and your brother's feelings. I will yet however not countermand the order which I authorized you to give him for the purchase, but must request you in writing to him, to enjoin upon him, not upon any consideration to exceed the limits which I prescribed in regard to the cost, either by any addition to the sum, or by any deduction from the books. I shall find it hard enough to carry the thing through, as I have undertaken it, but I am still bent upon securing the whole collection to ourselves. Ask your brother also to have the good
* See post, pp 114-115.
ness to forward to me as soon as possible, a Catalogue of the Library. I
JOHN QUINCY ADAMS
I have received your Letter of the 20" which was already answered by mine of the 16" M' Eustis has got a Secretary, and if there should be any mission to Prussia it will not be sooner than next Summer, and then — how many Candidates !
P. S. 2.
XII. ALEX! H. EVERETT. Esq-Boston
WASHINGTON 29. December 1817. Dear Sir.
Your Letter of the 16" has been a full week upon my unanswered file, and I am now obliged to answer it very imperfectly. The Newspapers mention that M' Eustis has gone to pass the Winter at Paris, and has left M' Appleton as Chargé d'Affaires at the Hague.
I suppose this is true though we have no notice of it. My last Letter from M' Eustis, is of 4. October, from the Hague, and its symptoms instead of indicating an intention of speedy departure, rather disclose a willingness to be detained even beyond the period of the ensuing Spring. No necessity for any such detention is supposed here to be likely to arise ; but if circumstances should occur to render the homeward voyage inconvenient next Spring, it may perhaps be postponed for another year. I have no particular reason for this surmize, other than that Gentlemen abroad who have projects of returning home do not like to be hurried.
I have not seen the Article upon Peace Societies in the North American Review ; nor the Review itself." But if our Peace Societies should fall into the fashion of corresponding upon the Objects of their Institution with foreign Emperors and Kings, they may at some future day find themselves under the necessity of corresponding with Attorney Generals and Grand and Petit Juries at home. Philip of Macedon
1 Answers to Everett's articles appeared in the Boston Daily Advertiser. They were reprinted in the Boston Weekly Messenger beginning November 20, 1817.
2 An article by Everett in the North American Ret'iew, VI. 25, is a review of The Friend of Peace, Nos. 1-8, by Philo Pacificus, one of a series of publications issued by a member of the Peace Society of Massachusetts. That Everett's early inclination to the acceptance and promulgation of peace plans and theories continued in later life may be judged from the article. " What can be more thoroughly and essentially chimerical, absurd, and ridiculous, than the pretence of settling a disputed boundary, or a doubtful passage in Grotius by arranging fifty or a hundred thousand men in two opposing lines, and compelling them to shoot each other down?” N. Am. Rer., VI. 44.
was in very active correspondence with a Peace Society at Athens; and with their co-operation baffled and overpowered all the Eloquence of Demosthenes. Alexander of the Neva, is not so near nor so dangerous a neighbour to us, as Philip was to the Athenians, but I am afraid his love of Peace is of the same character as was that of the Man of Macedon. Absolute Princes, who can dispose of large masses of human force, must naturally in applying them, be aided by all the pacific dispositions that they can find or make among those whom they visit with the exercise of their power. In the intercourse between Power and Weakness, Peace, in the language of the former, means the submission of the latter to its will. While Alexander, and his Minister of Religious Worship, Prince Galitzin, are corresponding with the Rev! Noah Worcester,' upon the blessedness of Peace, the venerable founder of the Holy League is sending five or six ships of the line, and several thousand promoters of peace armed with bayonets to Cadiz, and thence to propagate good will to man elsewhere – whether at Algiers, at Constantinople, or at Buenos Ayres we shall be informed hereafter.
The mention of Buenos-Ayres, brings to my mind an Article that I have lately seen in the Boston Patriot, and which I concluded was from your pen. Its tendency was to shew the inexpediency and injustice there would be in our taking side with the South-Americans in their present struggle against Spain. It was an excellent Article, and I should be glad to see the same train of thought further pursued. As for example by a discussion of the question in political morality by what right we could take side? and who, in this case of a civil War, has constituted us the judges, which of the parties has the righteous Cause ? then by an enquiry, what the Cause of the South-Americans is, and whether it really be as their partizans here alledge, the same as our own Cause, in the war of our Revolution ? Whether for instance if Buenos-Ayres, has formally offered to accept the Infant Don Carlos as their absolute Monarch, upon condition of being politically Independent of Spain, their cause is the same as ours was? Whether, if Bolivar, being at the head of the Re. public of Venezuela, has solemnly proclaimed the absolute and total emancipation of the slaves, the cause of Venezuela is precisely the same as ours was? Whether in short there is any other feature of identity between their Cause and ours, than that they are as we were Colonies fighting for Independence. In our Revolution there were two distinct Stages, in the first of which we contended for our civil rights, and in the second for our political Independence. The second as we solemnly declared to the world was imposed upon us as a necessity, after every practicable effort had been made in vain to secure the first. In South-America, Civil Rights, if not entirely out of the question, appear to have been equally disregarded and trampled upon by all parties. Bu-nos Ayres has no Constitution; and its present ruling rs are established
? Noah Worcester, 1758-1837, secretary of the Peace Society 1816-1828, is credited not only with editing but with writing most of the Friend of Peace, issued periodically, 1815-1818.
AM. HIST. KEV., VOL. XI.-8.
only by the arbitrary banishment of their predecessors. Venezuela though it has emancipated all its slaves, has been constantly alternating between an absolute Military Government, a Capitulation to Spanish Authority, and Guerillas black and white, of which every petty chief has acted for purposes of War and Rapine as an Independent Sovereign. There is finally in South-America neither unity of cause, nor unity of effort as there was in our Revolution. Neither was our Revolution disgraced by that buccaneering and piratical Spirit which has lately appeared among the South-Americans, not of their own growth, but I am sorry to say, chiefly from the contamination of their intercourse with us. Their privateers have been for the most part fitted out and officered in our Ports, and manned from the sweepings of our Streets. It was more effectually to organize and promote this patriotic system, that the expeditions to Galveston and Amelia - Island were carried into effect, and that successive gangs of desperadoes Scotch, French, Creoles, and NorthAmericans, have been constituting the Republic of the Florida's. Yet such is the propensity of our people to sympathize with the South-Americans, that no feeble exertion is now making to rouse a party in this Country against the Government of the Union, and against the President for having issued orders to put down this Nest of freebooters at our doors.
Your preparations for the next Spring Elections in Massachusetts, appear to be judicious, and I hope they will be successful. I neither see or hear anything more of the Brighter Views, nor of Old North than what you tell me; and there is at present not much to be apprehended from the authors of either of them.
We have the prospect of a troublesome Indian War in the South; and its bearings upon our political affairs may be more extensive and important than is expected. I am, Dear Sir, very sincerely your's
JOHN QUINCY ADAMS.
XIII. A. H. EVERETT Esq? — Boston
WASHINGTON 6. April 1818. Dear Sir.
I have received your Letter, enclosing the draft upon Baltimore for 900 dollars, which when received shall be applied conformably to your desire. I have also your favour of 31. ult.. A Letter from your brother, of 23 January at Paris has informed me, that while he was in treaty for the purchase of the Ebeling library for me, with a prospect of obtaining it, though the price demanded for the whole was something beyond the sum that I had limited, he received another order, to purchase it for Harvard University, without limitation of price. He therefore justly considered mine as superseded; as the only object which I could propose to myself was that the possession of the treasures, to this Country should at all Events be secured ; while my limited means would neither admit of my keeping them myself, nor of my making a donation of them