Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Selections from the Letters and Speeches of the Hon. James H. Hammond, of South Carolina >> Speech on the Justice of Receiving Petitions for the Abolition of Slavery in the District of Columbia >> Page 30

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Page 30

Speech | The Reprint Company; John F. Trow & Co. | 1866, 1978
Transcription J

effort to free your slaves will be made ; and Congress will be the ultimate scene of the struggle. Our next elections will mainly turn on this question, unless you settle it now and forever; that is, before this session expires. :If you adjourn without so settling it, you will have to resort to the bayonet to adjust it."
[Mr. Granger and Mr. Lee, of New York, demand-
ed the name of the author. Mr. H. said, I cannot give
it. I will vouch for his character. But such is the
state of society - around him, I fear . it would prove
dangerous, if not fatal to him, to disclose his name.]
Mr. Speaker, I believe what I have just read. Sir,
there can no longer be a doubt of the deep, pervading,
uncontrollable excitement which shakes the antislave
States on. this subject, nor of the energy and power
with-which the Abolitionists' Ore pressing their mad
and fatal schemes. Every mail from the North brings
fresh news of agitation, every breeze is tarn ted with
it.. It spreads like wild-fire in the prairies, and throws
its red , glare up to' heaven, that all may see while it
sweeps with resistless fury everything before it. I call
on every slaveholder in this House, and in this coun-
try, to mark its fearful progress and prepare to meet
it. ' He who falters here or elsewhere, he who shrinks
from taking the highest and ' the strongest ground at
once, is a traitor ! A traitor to his native soil ! . A
traitor .to the memory of those from whom he has in-
herited his rights ! A traitor to his helpless offspring,
who call upon him for protection ! And on his head
be the blood which his treachery or cowardice may
cause to flow.
Allow me now, Sir, to examine more closely the
real designs of those Abolitionists, the means by which
they, will attempt to effect them, and the probable
es ult. Their designs are very succinctly stated in the