« EelmineJätka »
them, and with their wet garments about them, they seemed to me to be a few families of Israelites who had come through the waves parted by the wand of God, their garments wet with its spray. Into their midst I went. I had not seen them for years, but they knew me. I was the first friendly white face—the first one they knew, at least—they had met. The old woman who had nursed me when I was a child, sprang forward and took me in her arms again as if I was still an infant. Those slaves, with the protection of our banner, went through Baltimore and Maryland; the mob glared upon them, but its fangs were drawn ; freedom was now in the ascendant. Those slaves were taken to the centre of a great free-state, and colonised, and there they are now, each family with a house over its head, the children all going to school, every one of them getting good wages, and respected by the community. So well had they earned their way, so faithfully had they toiled under the new conditions of freedom, that those negroes sent me word that they were ready to repay the money I had advanced to take them from Washington to the centre of this northwestern state. They were anxions to pay back, and some
them did send the money, all of which I consecrated and returned to educate their benighted minds. Now these negroes had toiled for my father and his family, they had by their work clothed and fed me from childhood, without receiving one penny as compensation ; but no sooner did. they take something of mine, than their first thought was to pay it back. These are the men who it is said will not labour, and are unworthy of freedom. They are immortal souls, with a great many fine and noble traits; they are all creatures of worth ; and knowing them, I can pronounce thein to be most fit for freedom. You might as well say that an invalid is not fit for health, as that negroes are not fit for freeciom; the invalid is the very man who needs health ; and if there is anything that entitles and fits a man for freedom, it is that he has been deprived of it.
I come now to another point. How are these slaves treated in the North when they get there? it is asked. Members of parliament have told you that they are treated like dogs. I do not think that å dog is allowed to vote, but in every northern state but three the negro is allowed to vote ; in every state he is allowed to sue before the courts of law, and obtain justice and jury trial equal to the
In every northern state he can give his vote without having to own £50 or £100 worth of real estate; he has a right to his vote, with equality before the law, and the tendency of events in the North is to give him social equality. In New York, in Washington, in Boston, and in Cincinnati, the railway cars which used to be exclusively for negroes, are taken off; and in Washington, shortly before I left, I saw a cabinet minister and a negro riding near together in the same car. That was in Washington, where two years ago there were slave auctions. The drift and tendency in the North is to a wider and deeper appreciation of humanity; and though certain demagogues, tried to interfere with those free negroes of my father's, they did not succeed, but they live there to-day free, and with a friendly neighbourhood around them. The mob wished to make it appear that the North hated the negro, but many of the mob were arrested, and the opposition was by no means popular or general.
America, then, stands to-day opposed to the slavery of the South. The only revenge the North wishes, is to bear to the South light for darkness, and freedom for bondage ; the only revenge she wishes is to carry her own free schools, her own wealth, her own principles of loyalty and justice into the regions that have been opposed to the leading principles of Christianity, and of the age. Under these circumstances you, as Englishmen, are called upon for your sympathy. I ask you to review the history of this question, and not to judge of it by military success. You have no right to do so as Christian men, who believe in a SAVIOUR who did not succeed for his time, but was crucified, who was in a minority, whose disciples were put to flight: you cannot judge of a great issue by its transient success ; it is unworthy of you. You must reject the Saviour because He was crucified, if you reject the free Nort! should she be beaten and not succeed. But apart from that, there are reasons why the North does not succeed. Every step of the North, for years, has been against the war; every step has been away from the age of war. The North has cultivated peace, and has been glad enough to have the navy and army filled entirely by Southerners ; she was glad to get rid of it; she hated war; war is an anachronism in the North : the North is a hundred years beyond war in her civilisation. She has not trained soldiers, or military
leaders, or generals : but in the South it has not been so. They have had to rule a vast people by force ; they have trained their young men to arms, and they have educated men to be generals and soldiers, and to disregard life. A recklessness of human life is a characteristic of that land, as you all know; the duel has prevailed there, the bowieknife has been brandished, and the recklessness of the Texan and Southerner is well known. All this has tended to create amongst them a military spirit, and to train better generals than was to be expected from Northern civilisation which was opposed to war, and counted the profession of a soldier disreputable until this war. But the rank and file of our soldiers are the best the world ever saw. They are men who think and read. A few of them came to the hospital the other day, and the person who presided over it came to me, and said there were six soldiers who had just arrived, and they wanted to borrow some books on the Colenso controversy. That is the character of the soldiers ; they sometimes do not succeed on the field, but they know how to get wounded, and they endure suffering bravely.
It proves nothing to say that a panther can kill a man ; he can kill seven men, but that does not show you ought to sympathise with the panther against the man. In this contest we have every belief that with further knowledge of the designs of the North, the poor whites of the South will become our friends, and they constitute nearly two millions. These serfs of the soil, "mean whites” as they are called, are ragged, dirty and drunken, and have no hope on earth; these men, who are virtually beneath the slavés, are to be liberated ; and when they find that we Northerners are bringing them the free-school, the sewing machine, and liberation from their present degradation, they will be our friends. When you take all the poor whites, and by improving their condition make them our friends, and the slaves too, you have left only a handful of Southerners who base their aristocracy upon the right to whip and lash men, women, and children. This power, so reckless, and every
animal ferocity kindled, has been able to give us much retribution, and I don't say we have not deserved it, for we have not protested against this crime as we ought; and it is perhaps just that every groan we have wrung from a black breast should find it's echo in a white breast. It is, perhaps, but making even the balances of
God, which are held in a hand that never trembles, though all the earth may shake.
There was once, as the legend runs, a mother who, when Moscow was on fire, fled from that city in a sledge, across the snow and ice, and she had her babe folded to her breast. As she went swiftly on in the night, she heard the howl of a wolf behind her; she turned and threw it a loaf of bread; that only whetted its appetite. Again it came nearer, and she threw it meat and bread, until piece by piece she had given it all the provision she had for herself and her child on their journey. But the wolf, only appetised by what it had eaten, came closer, and she could see its red glaring eyes. Closer it came, until at last, as it prepared for its final spring (alas ! tragic story), the mother unfolded her child, and threw it to the wolf, in order to escape herself.
America has long been pursued by this keen wolf; for scores of years it has pursued her. Swiftly and with fangs eager to devour liberty, it has come. She has thrown it piece after piece, territory after territory, but its hunger was still driving it on. She gave it all ; she tore the very fugitive from the altars of God and cast him to the wolf; but still the monster pressed after her. And now the question for Englishmen is this : Shall America, shall this mother unfold from her breast her sacred child liberty, and throw that to the wolf ? or shall she turn to cope with the wolf? She has given it all but liberty ; shall she now give that? I say a thousand times never-never! And though now that the mother has turned to cope with the wolf, there may be found men in your high places who throw up their hats for the woif, I appeal to every earnest English heart who has a love for the sacred traditions of liberty, that he shall give his heart's best sympathy in this conflict for the mother and her sacred child, the messiah of nations, the great liberator, whose pillar is to guide you and your children towards humanity's promised land ; though it be fire, or though it be cloud, it is to lead you; your souls shall beat for it; you shall feel that it is your cause, and shall pray that this mother, inspired by love of her babes, may be able to rend the monster of slavery and insurrection asunder for ever !
[Delivered before the Stretford Mutual Improvement Society.]
HE first man was a gardener who got discharged for
robbing his master, and was turned out of the garden to till the ground ; and we are informed that Paradise was afterwards guarded by a miraculous sword which turned every way to meet trespassers. (Genesis ii. 3.) Plants must have yielded man his first food ; his first-built habitation and utensils must alike have been derived from the same source. This must have produced experience, and especially the art of distinguishing one plant from another, if it were only as a means of recognising the useful and worthless species, or of remembering those in which such qualities were most predominant. This would involve from the beginning the contrivance of names for plants, together with the collection of individuals into species, and the mental process by which this was unconsciously effected, gradually ripened into the first rude classifications that we hear of. By grouping individuals identical in form and the uses to which they could be applied, species were distinguished ; and by applying a similar process to the species themselves, groups analogous to what we now call genera were obtained. The last step was to constitute classes, which were recognised under the well-known names of “Grass and herbs yielding seed, and fruit trees yielding fruit." Thus the study of plants may be regarded as coæval with the creation of man, because they are in a great measure indispensable to the support of animal life. The history of gardening may be considered chronologically, or in connection with that of different nations who have successively flourished in different parts of the world ; politically, as influenced by the different forms of government which have prevailed ; and geographically, as affected by the different climates and natural situations of