Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Selections from the Letters and Speeches of the Hon. James H. Hammond, of South Carolina >> An Oration on the Life, Character, and Services of John Caldwell Calhoun, Delivered on the 21st November 1850, in Charleston, S.C., at the Request of the City Council >> Page 263

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Page 263

Speech | The Reprint Company; John F. Trow & Co. | 1866, 1978
Transcription 263
Tariff, notwithstanding the loud declara '-ion of finality
by both, at the preceding Session. TLtimately, the
famous Compromise Bill was proposed by Mr. Clay,
the great leader of the Protectionists, and was ac-
cepted by Mr. Calhoun and his colleagues from South
Carolina. It became a law and settled this perilous
controversy. By this act, in consideration of nine
years being allowed for a gradual reduction of the
duties, the principle of Protection was forever sur-
rendered, and it was provided that, at the end of that
period, no more revenue should ever be collected than
was necessary for the wants of an economical Gov-
No pains have been spared by the majority to
detract from the merit of the signal triumph achieved
by South Carolina and Mr. Calhoun in his arduous
and memorable contest. More, undoubtedly, might
have been gained. The term of the reduction was a
long one : the final enforcement of the Compromise
was not, as was afterwards proven, sufficiently secured :
and the Force Bill was passed —a monument of the
subserviency and degradation of an American Con-
gress. The triumph might have been more complete ;
but, shared with many, far less glorious, had South
Carolina been sustained by her sister States of the
South. Most of these had denounced the Protective
System as unconstitutional and oppressive, and pledged
themselves to resist it with as much show of indigna-
tion as South Carolina. But when the hour of actual
conflict came, they shrunk from her side, and repudi
ated the remedy. She took her station in the breach
alone, and, single-handed, won a victory whose renown
can never fade, when she extorted from an over