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responsible. I have not the right, had I the desire, to claim the support of any of my colleagues for a single opinion set forth in it. In scope, it has falsified the Horatian warning as to the unexpected issue of the turning wheel. I undertook only a few pages of introductory remark and narrative; but my work grew under my hand, and the result, though still a trifle, is something more, as well as something other, than that which I sat down to write. If many of my readers find in the little book only what they had already learned, I shall be pleased that I address so well-informed a circle; and let them be thankful that they know so much more than their neighbors. If any intelligent reader disapproves of what is here written, he will owe me something for having furnished him with a topic of elegant social discussion with some other more intelligent reader who approves. The more animated and general the dispute, the better for the publishers, who have invested money in paper which might have made cartridges, and type which might have done service as bullets.

I have some friends in England, and more in America, who know the deep and abiding love and reverence I have for all that is good, and great, and honorable in English character, in English history and letters—and there is so much of it—and how I prize my English birthright. These may wonder at some passages in this little volume, until they reflect a moment upon the very obvious fact, that those passages do not touch upon what I regard as lovely and venerable in the English character, or—as I am at once glad and sorry to say-as essentially English at all. So, too, I have friends among my Southern fellow-citizens who know


that although I believe, with some Southern statesmen, whose names are favorably known to the world, that slavery is a wrong and an evil, I am neither Abolitionist nor "Black" Republican ; and whom, if they are surprised at anything I have written, I would remind that what the men who control the South are now fighting for is something that has never brought honor to any nation, and which has been long the reproach of this country throughout civilized Christendom. Reproach which we who were in no sense justly open to it have yet borne for the sake of brotherhood, and the ultimate benefit of our country and the world; and which we are willing still to bear, so long as they who inflict the wrong and hug the evil, do not insist upon our sharing their fearful responsibility.

This, however, not by way of apology, or deprecation. I have not one word to take back or to regret. But I do ask the reader's pardon for detaining him so long here, while, like an over-anxious host, I press upon him half my entertainment at the threshold.


R. G. W

NEW YORK, Sept. 16th, 1861.

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In the Spring of the present year a new want began to be felt in this country. The batteries with which the faithful commander of Fort Sumter had, with silent guns, seen himself surrounded during four long months, opened fire upon the national flag floating from a military post of the United States, and he and his handful of brave soldiers were burned out of the strong-hold from which it does not appear that they could have otherwise been driven. Indignation flashed through the astonished land; and the loyal citizens of the Republic rose as one man to avenge the wrong and defend the national existence. The whole country quivered with a new emotion. Men lived in the open air that they might read in each other s faces, eye to eye, the noble wrath, the fixed determination, the lofty purpose that ruled the hour. Two could hardly speak together in the street above their ordinary tone without being surrounded by eager listeners. Every public place was thronged by unbidden crowds, intent upon the discussion of the momentous situation; and more formal meetings, numbering from hundreds to tens of thousands, were common. A nation of freemen, each one of whom felt, at last, his own responsibility for his country's safety and honor, was pierced through brain and heart with the barbed conviction that that safety was in peril, and that honor was at stake.

Party barriers fell as if by magic; and we all found ourselves side by side with one feeling, one purpose, forgetful of the past, absorbed in the present and the future. Patriotism, which had been trodden under the feet of politicians, which had withered in the arid soil of selfishness under the blazing sun of prosperity, which had been choked with the thorns of care, and wealth, and pleasure, struck at once its roots to the very centre of the nation's being, and in a single night blossomed into fruitfulness. That fruit was a stern resolution to sacrifice life and fortune in defence of the republic. But stern although it was, there was mixed with it no hatred, no vindictiveness.* The insurgents were enemies only in so far

*"I have nowhere in the North," said the late Secretary of War, Mr. Holt of Kentucky, in his New York speech of September 3rd, 'found any feeling of exasperation against the people of the South."

as they were enemies of the republic for which their fathers and ours had toiled, and fought, and died toge ther. The resentment was pure of all personality, and consistent with all charity and individual good will. Nay, it was mingled with sorrow and pity for men and brethren, whose judgment had been so blinded, and whose moral sense had been so perverted by the holding of an inferior race in slavery, as to enable trading politicians, disappointed or fearing disappointment, to prepare them for, and finally lead them into a rebellion against, what one of themselves has well styled, “ the most beneficent government the world ever saw :" a rebellion, unsupported even by the slightest prospective danger to slavery wherever it was made locally secure by the organic compact of the nation, but having for its sole motive the determination, either to make the interest of slavery dominant in this country, and to pervert the flag of this free republic to the protection of inchoate slave communities, or to rend and ruin the great nation in which that interest had ceased to rule.

This purpose was regarded as a wicked one; but it was the sin that was hated, not the sinners; and, to illustrate this period by glancing forward from it—if the national forces, instead of succumbing to their humiliating and causeless panic at Manassas Junction, had been able to follow up and complete their first well won success, there would have been joy, indeed, throughout the loyal States; but no exultation, no triumph, no festivities, no illuminations would have celebrated that victory. Government would have but

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