Synopses & Reviews
Excerpt from Lest We Forget
This was foreshadowed by Mr. Lincoln in his memorable speech at Springfield in September, 1858. He said: If we could first know where we are and whither we are tending, we could better judge what to do and how to do it. We are now far into the fifth year since a policy was initiated with the avowed object, and confident promise, of putting an end to slavery agitation. Under the-operation of that policy, that agitation has not only not ceased, but has constantly augmented. In my opinion, it will not cease until a crisis shall have been reached and passed. A house divided against itself can not stand. I believe this government can not endure permanently half slave and half free. I do not expect the Union to be dis solved - I do not expect the house to fall - but I do expect it will cease to be divided. It will become all one thing or all the other. Either the opponents of slavery will arrest the further spread of it, and place it where the public mind shall rest in the belief that it is in the course of ultimate extinction, or its advocates will push it forward till it shall become alike lawful in all States, old as well as new, North as well as South.
President Buchanan was completely under the in uence of the slave power. The admission of Kansas was a burning issue and Buchanan did all in his power to foist a fraudulent Constitution adopted by a rump convention of slaveholders from Missouri upon the people of that territory.
Mr. Douglas refused to be a party to the scheme and denounced it severely in the Senate chamber. Buchanan was furious at the stand taken by Douglas and said to him: Mr. Douglas, I desire you to remember that no Democrat ever yet differed from an administration of his own choice without being crushed. Douglas replied in an emphatic manner: Mr. President, I wish you to remember that General Jackson is dead.
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