Henry J. (Henry Jarvis) Raymond.

Lincoln, his life and time : being the life and public services of Abraham Lincoln, sixteenth president of the United States, together with his state papers, including his speeches, addresses, messages and proclamations and closing scenes connected with his life and death (Volume 1) online

. (page 14 of 42)
Online LibraryHenry J. (Henry Jarvis) RaymondLincoln, his life and time : being the life and public services of Abraham Lincoln, sixteenth president of the United States, together with his state papers, including his speeches, addresses, messages and proclamations and closing scenes connected with his life and death (Volume 1) → online text (page 14 of 42)
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of affairs presented by our friends over the river ? Take even their ow
view of the questions involved, and there is nothing to justify the coum.
they are pursuing. I repeat, then, there is no crisis, excepting such a
one as may be gotten up at any time by turbulent men, aided by design
ing politicians. My advice to them, under such circumstances, is to keep
cool. If the great American people only keep their temper on both sides
of the line, the troubles will come to an end, and the question which
now distracts the country will be settled, just as surely as all other diffi
culties of a like character which have originated in this Government
have been adjusted. Let the people on both sides keep their self-posses
sion, and just as other clouds have cleared away in due time, so will thi
great nation continue to prosper as heretofore. But, fellow-citizens, I
have spoken longer on this subject than I intended at the outset.

It is often said that the Tariff is the specialty of Pennsylvania.
Assuming that direct taxation is not to be adopted, the Tariff question
must be as durable as the Government itself. It is a question of national
housekeeping. It is to the Government what replenishing the meal-tub
is to the family. Every varying circumstance will require frequent
modifications as to the amount needed, and the sources of supply. So
far there is little difference of opinion among the people. It is only
whether, and how far, the duties on imports shall be adjusted to favor
home productions. In th home market that controversy begins. One
party insists that too much protection oppresses one class for the advan
tage of another, while the other party argues that with all its incidents,
in the long run, all classes are benefited. In the Chicago Platform there
is a plank upon this subject, which should be a general law to the incom
ing Administration. We should do neither more nor less than we gave
the people reason to believe we would when they gave us their votes.
That plank is as I now read.

Mr. Lincc In s private secretary then read section twelfth of the Chicago
Platform, as follows :

That while providing revenue for the support of the General Govern
ment, by duties upon imports, sound policy requires buch an adjustment
oJf these imports as will encourage the development of the industrial
interest of the whole country ; and we commend that policy of national
exchanges which secures to working-men liberal wages, to agriculture
remunerative prices, to mechanics and manufacturers adequate reward


for tho ? r skill, labor, and enterprise, and to the nation commercial pros
perity and independence.

Mr. Lincoln resumed : As with all general propositions, doubtless there
will be shades of difference in construing this. I have by no means a
thoroughly matured judgment upon this subject, especially as to details;
some general ideas are about all. I have long thought to produce any
necessary article at home which can be made of as good quality and v- ith
as little labor at home as abroad, would be better policy, at least by the
difference of the carrying from abroad. In such a case, the carrying is
demonstrably a dead loss of labor. For instance, labor being the true
standard of value, is it not plain that if equal labor gets a bar of railroad
iron out of a mine in England, and another out of a mine in Pennsyl
vania, each can be laid down in a track at home cheaper than they could
exchange countries, at least by the cost of carriage? If there bo a pres
ent cause why one can be both made and carried cheaper in money
price than the other can be made without carrying, that cause is an
unnatural and injurious one, and ought naturally, if not rapidly, to be
removed. The condition of the treasury at this time would seem to
render an early revision of the Tariff indispensable. The Morrill Tariff
Bill, now pending before Congress, may or may not become a law. I
am not posted as to its particular provisions, but if they are generally
satisfactory, and the bill shall now pass, there will be an end of the mat
ter for the present. If, however, it shall not pass, I suppose the whole
subject will be one of the most pressing and important for the next Con
gress. By the Constitution, the Executive may recommend measures
which he may think proper, and he may veto those he thinks improper,
and it is supposed that he may add to these certain indirect influences
to affect the action of Congress. My political education strongly inclines
me against a very free use of any of these means by the Executive to
control the legislation of the country. As a rule, I think it better that
Congress should originate as well as perfect its measures without external
bias. I, therefore, would rather recommend to every gentleman who
know is be IB to be a member of the next Congress to take an enlarged
>ieTr, and inform himself thoroughly, so as to contribute his part to such
an adjustment of the tariff as shall produce a sufficient revenue, and in its
other bearings, so far as possible, be just and equal to all sections of the
country, and all classes of the people.

Mr. Lincoln left Pittsburg immediately after the delivery
of this speech, being accompanied to the depot by a long
procession of the people of the city. The train reached
Cleveland at half-past four in the afternoon, and the Pres
ident-elect was received by a long procession, which
inarched, amidst the roar of artillery, through the princi-


pal streets to the Weddell House, where Mr. Lincoln, in
reply to an address of welcome from the Mayor, made the
following remarks :

marching about two miles through snow, rain, and deep mud. The large

umbers that have turned out under these circumstances testify that you
re in earnest about something or other. But do I think so meanly of
you as to suppose that that earnestness is about me personally? I would
be doing you injustice to suppose it was. You have assembled to testify
yonr respect to the Union, and the Constitution and the laws. And here
let me state that it is with you, the people, to advance the great cause of
the Union and the Constitution, and not with any one man. It rests with
you alone. This fact is strongly impressed on my mind at present. In a
eoinim.nity like this, whose appearance testifies to their intelligence, I
am convinced that the cause of liberty and the Union can never be in
danger. Frequent allusion is made to the excitement at present existing
in our national politics, and it is as well that I should also allude to it
here. I think that there is no occasion for any excitement. The crisis,
as it is called, is altogether an artificial crisis. In all parts of the nation
there are differences of opinion on politics. There are differences of
opinion even here. You did not all vote for the person who now ad
dresses you. What is happening now will not hurt those who are
further away from here. Have they not all their rights now as they
ever have had ? Do not they have their fugitive slaves returned now as
ever ? Have they not the same Constitution that they have lived under
for seventy odd years? Have they not a position as citizens of this com
mon country, and have we any power to change that position ? [Cries
of "No."] What, then, is the matter with them? Why all this excite
ment? Why all these complaints? As I said before, this crisis is all

titiciall It has no foundation in fact. It was not " argued up," as the
nayiug is, and cannot therefore be argued down. Let it alone, and it will
go down of itself. [Laughter.] Mr. Lincoln said that they must
be content with but a few words from him. He was very much
fatigued, and had spoken so. much that he was already hoarse. Ho
thanked them for the cordial and magnificent reception they had given
him. Not less did he thank them for the votes they gave him last fall ;
and quite as much he thanked them for the efficient aid they had given
the cause which he represented a cause which he would say was a good

He had one more word to say. He was given to understand that thii
reception was tendered not only by his own party supporters, but by
men of all parties. This is as it should be. If Judge Douglas had been
elected, and had been here, on his way to Washington, as I am to-night,
the Republicans should have joined his supporters in welcoming him,


just as his friends have joined with mine to-ni^ht. If all do not joir
now to save the good old ship of the Union on this voyage, nobody will
have a chance to pilot her on another voyage. lie concluded by thank-
Tig all present for the devotion they had shown to the cause of the

On the morning of the 16th the Presidential party left
Cleveland for Buffalo. At Erie, where they dined, loud
calls were made upon Mr. Lincoln for a speech, in response
to which he made a few remarks, excusing himself for no
expressing his opinions on the exciting questions of tl<
iay. He trusted that when the time for speaking should
some, he should find it necessary to say nothing not in
accordance with the Constitution, as well as with the
interests of the people of the whole country. At North
east Station he took occasion to state that during the cam
paign he had received a letter from a young girl of the
place, in which he was kindly admonished to do certain
things, and among others to let his whiskers grow ; and,
as he had acted upon that piece of advice, he would now
"be glad to welcome his fair correspondent, if she was
among the crowd. In response to the call a lassie made
her way through the crowd, was helped on the platform,
and was kissed by the President.

Arriving at Buffalo, Mr. Lincoln had the utmost diffi
culty to make his way through the dense crowd which
had assembled in anticipation of his arrival. On reaching
the American Hotel, he was welcomed in a brief speech by
Acting-Mayor Bends, to which he responded as follows :

YOKK : I am here to thank you briefly for this grand reception given i
me ; iu-t personally, but as the representative of our great and beloved
coi.iitry. [Cheers.] Your worthy Mayor has been pleased to mention,
in his address to me, the fortunate and agreeable journey which 1 have
had from home, only it is a rather circuitous route to the Federal Capital.
I am very h^ppy that he was enabled in truth to congratulate myself and
company on that fact. It is true we have had nothing thus far to inar
the pleasure of the trip. We have not been met alone by those who
assisted in giving the election to me; I say not alone by them, but by the
whole population of the country through which we have passed. This w
as it should be. Had the election fallen to any other of the distinguished


eandi<l;iti>s instead of myself, under the peculiar circumstances, to say the
least, it won Id hav been proper for all citizens to have greeted him us
you now greet me. It is an evidence of the devotion of the whole people
to the Constitution, the Union, and the perpetuity of the liberties of this
country. [Cheers.] I am unwilling on any occasion that I should be so
meanly thought of as to have it supposed for a moment that these demon
strations are tendered to me personally. They are tendered to the country,
to the institutions of the country, and to the perpetuity of the liberties of
the country, for which these institutions were made and created.

Your worthy Mayor has thought fit to express the hope that I may b
able to relieve the country from the present, or, I should say, the threat
ened difficulties. I am sure I bring a heart true to the work. [Treinen
dons applause.] For the ability to perform it, I must trust in that Supreme
Being who has never forsaken this favored land, through the instrumen
tality of this great and intelligent people. Without that assistance I shall
surely fail ; with it, I cannot fail. When we speak of threatened difficul
ties to the country, it is natural that it should be expected that something
should be said by myself with regard to particular measures. Upon more
mature reilection, however and others will agree with me that, when
it is considered that these difficulties are without precedent, and never
have been acted upon by any individual situated as I am, it is most proper
I should wait and see the developments, and get all the light possible, so
that when I do speak authoritatively, I may be as near right as possible.
[Cheers.] When I shall speak authoritatively, I hope to say nothing in
consistent with the Constitution, the Union, the rights of all the States,
of each State, and of each section of the country, and not to disappoint
the reasonable expectations of those who have confided to me their votes.
In this connection allow me to say that you, as a portion of the great
American people, need only to maintain your composure, stand up to
your sober convictions of right, to your obligations to the Constitution,
and act in accordance with those sober convictions, and the clouds which
now arise in the horizon will be dispelled, and we shall have a bright and.
glorious future; and when this generation has passed away, tens of thou-
t. tnds will inhabit this country where only thousands inhabit it now. I
not propose to address you at length ; I have no voice for it. Allow me
xguin to thank you for this magnificent reception, and bid you fareweil.

Mr. Lincoln remained at Buffalo over Sunday, the 17th,
and on the morning of the 18th left for Albany. On
reaching Rochester, he was introduced by the Mayor to a
crowd of several thousands, to whom he said :

I confess myself, after having seen many large audiences since leaving
home, overwhelmed with this vast nnnil r of faces at tl^is hour of ihe
morning. I am not vain enough to believe that you are here from any
irish to see me as an individual^ bvt because I am for the time being the


representative of the American people. I could not, if I would, addreag
yon at any length. I have not the strength, even if T imu the f, mu\ for a
gpeoch at each of these many interviews that are afforded me on my way
to Washington. I appear merely to see you, and to let you see me, and
to bid you farewell. I hope it will be understood that it is from no dis-
ict&nation to oblige anybody that I do not address you at greater length.

At Syracuse, where preparations had "been made to give
him a formal reception, he made the following remarks
in reply to an address of welcome from the Mayor :

LADIES AND GENTLEMEN: I see you have erected a very fine and hand
some platform here for me, and I presume you expected me to speak from
it. If I should go upon it, you would imagine that I was about to deliver
you a much longer speech than I am. I wish you to understand that I
mean no discourtesy to you by thus declining. I intend discourtesy to no
one. But I wish you to understand that, though I am unwilling to go
upon this platform, you are not at liberty to draw any inferences concern
ing any other platform with which my name has been or is connected,
[Laughter and applause.] I wish you long life and prosperity individu
ally, and pray that with the perpetuity of those institutions under which
we have all so long lived and prospered, our happiness may be secured,
our future made brilliant, and the glorious destiny of our country estab
lished forever. I bid you a kind farewell.

At Utica, where an immense and most enthusiastic
assemblage of people from the surrounding country had
gathered to see him, Mr. Lincoln contented himself by
saying I
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN : I have no speech to make to you, and no time
to speak in. I appear before you that I may see you, and that yon ni
sei me ; and I am willing to admit, that so far as the ladies are concenu
I have the best of the bargain, though I wish it to be understood that 1
do not make the same acknowledgment concerning the men. [Laughter
and applause.]

The train reached Albany at half-past two in the after
noon, where Mr. Lincoln was formally received by the
Mayor in a complimentary address, to which he thus
replied :

MR. MAYOR : 1 can hardly appropriate to myself the flattering terms in
which you communicate the tender of this reception, as personal to my
self. I most gratefully accept the hospitalities tendered to me, and will
nor- detain you or the audience with any extended remarks at this time.


I presume tlmt in the two or three courses through which I shall have Ic
go, I shall have to repeat somewhat, and I will therefore only repeat to
you my thanks for this kind reception.

A procession was then formed, which escorted Mr. Lin
coln to the steps of the Capital, where he was we] corned
bj 7 the Governor, in presence of an immense mass of the
uople, whom he addressed as follows :

MK. GOVERNCK: I was pleased to receive an invitation to visit the
capital of the great Empire State of the nation, on iny way to the Federal
Capital, and I now thank you, Mr. Governor, and the people of this capital,
and the people of the State of New York, for this most hearty and mag
nificent welcome. If I am not at fault, the great Empire State at this
time contains a greater population than did the United States of America
at the time she achieved her national independence. I am proud to bo
invited to pass through your capital and meet them, as I now have the
honor to do.

I am notified by your Governor that this reception is given without
distinction of party. I accept it the more gladly because it is so. Almost
all men in this country, and in any country where freedom of thought
ia tolerated, attach themselves to political parties. It is but ordinary
charity to attribute this to the fact that in so attaching himself to the
party which his judgment prefers, the citizen believes he thereby promote!
the best interests of the whole country ; and when an election is passed,
it is altogether befitting a free people that, until the next election, they
should be as one people. The reception you have extended to me to-day
is not given to me personally. It should not be so, but as the representa
tive for tho time bemg of the majority of the nation. If the election had
resulted in the selection of either of the other candidates, the same cor
diality should have been extended to him as is extended to me this day,
111 testimony of the devotion of the whole people to the Constitution and
the whole Union, and of their desire to perpetuate our institutions, and to
hand them down in their perfection to succeeding generations.

I have neither the voice nor the strength to address you at any greater
length. I beg you will accept my most grateful thanks for this devotion
not, to me, but to this great and glorious free country.

Mr. Lincoln was then escorted to the Hall of Assembly,
and was formally received on behalf of the members
of the legislature, to whom he made the following ad
dress :

NEW YORK : It is with feelings of great diffidence, and, I may say, with
Mings of ?*we, perhaps greater than I l>^e recently experienced, that I


meet you here in this place. The history of this great State, the renown
of those great men who Ijave stood here, and spoke here, and been I eard
here, all crowd around my fancy, and incline me to shrink from any
attempt to address you. Yet I have some confidence given me by the
generous manner in which you have invited me, and by the still more
generous manner in which you have received me, to speak further. You
have invited and received me without distinction of party. I cannot for
a moment suppose that this has been done in any considerable degre
with reference to my personal services, but that it is done in so far as I
am regarded at this time as the representative of the majesty of this great
nation. 1 doubt not this is the truth, and the wholo truth, of the cas
and this is as it should be. It is much mure gratifying to me that this
reception has been given to me as the representative of a free people,
than it could possibly be if tendered as an evidence of devotion to me, cr
to any one man personally. And now I think it were more fitting that
I should close these hasty remarks. It is true that, while I hold myself,
without mock modesty, the humblest of all individuals that have evei
been elevated to the Presidency, I have a more difficult task to perform
than any one of them. You have generously tendered me the united
support of the great Empire State. For this, in behalf of the nation in
behalf of the present and future of the nation in behalf of civil and
religious liberty for all time to come, most gratefully do I thank you. I
I do not propose to enter into an explanation of any particular line of
policy, as to our present difficulties, to be adopted by the incoming Ad
ministration. I deem it just to you, to myself, and to all, that I should
see every thing, that I should hear every thing, that I should have every
light that can be brought within my reach, in order that, when I do so
speak, I shall have enjoyed every opportunity to take correct and true
grounds ; and for this reason I don t propose to speak, at this time, of the
policy of the Government. But when the time comes I shall speak, at
well as I am able, for the good of the present and future of this country
for the good both of the North and the South of this country for the
good of the one and the other, and of all sections of the country. [Roumlfl
of applause.] In the mean time, if we have patience, if we restrain our
selves, if we allow ourselves not to run off in a passion, I still have conn i
dence that the Almighty, the Maker of the Universe, will, through thef
instrumentality of this great and intelligent people, bring us through this,
as he has through all the other difficulties of our country. Relying on
this, I again thank you for this generous reception. [Applause and

On the morning of the 19th Mr. Lincoln went to Tnty,
and, in reply to the welcome of the Mayor, said :

MR. MA.YOR AND CITIZENS OF Titov: I thank you very kindly for thin
great reception. Since I left my Uime it has not been my fortune to meet


an assemblage more numerous and more orderly than this. I am the
more graittied at this mark of your regard, since you assure me it is ten
dered, not to the individual, but to the high office you have called me to
fill. I have neither strength nor time to make any extended remarks, an^
1 can only repeat to you my sincere thanks for the kind reception you
have thought proper to extend to me.

On the route to New York, by the Hudson River Rail
mad, very large crowds of people had assembled at the
various stations to welcome him. At Hudson he spoke
.is follows :

FELLOW-CITIZENS : I see that you have provided a ^latform, but I shall
have to decline standing on it. [Laughter and applause.] The superin
tendent tells me I have not time during our brief stay to leave the train.
1 had to decline standing on some very handsome platforms prepared for
me yesterday. But I say to you, as I said to them, you must not on this
account draw the inference that I have any intention to desert any plat
form I have a legitimate right to stand on. I do not appear before you
for the purpose of making a speech. I come only to see you, and to give
you the opportunity to see me ; and I say to you, as I have before said to
crowds where there are so many handsome ladies as there are here, I
think I have decidedly the best of the bargain. I have only, therefore,
to thank you most cordially for this kind reception, and bid you all fare

At Poughkeepsie, where great preparations had been
made for his reception, he responded thus to an addresa
from the Mayor :

FELLOW-CITIZENS: It is altogether impossible I should make myself
heard by any considerable portion of this vast assemblage ; but, although
I appear before you mainly for the purpose of seeing you, and to let you
see, rather than hear me, I cannot refrain from saying that I am highly
atified as much here, indeed, under the circumstances, as I have been
ywhere on my route to witness this noble demonstration made, not
in honor of an individual, but of the man who at this time humbly, but
earnestly, represents the majesty of the nation. This reception, like all

Online LibraryHenry J. (Henry Jarvis) RaymondLincoln, his life and time : being the life and public services of Abraham Lincoln, sixteenth president of the United States, together with his state papers, including his speeches, addresses, messages and proclamations and closing scenes connected with his life and death (Volume 1) → online text (page 14 of 42)