Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Selections from the Letters and Speeches of the Hon. James H. Hammond, of South Carolina >> Speech Delivered at Barnwell C.H., S.C., October 29, 1858 >> Page 349

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Page 349

Speech | The Reprint Company; John F. Trow & Co. | 1866, 1978
Transcription 349
If there is truth in what I have stated to you if
the abolition fever has nearly or quite exhausted itself
in Europe if time and facts have proved there, that
it is an absurdity—it seems to me we should not doubt
that its career is about to close here. Such is my
opinion, however differently those may think who
judge only by appearances, or take their cues from
agitating politicians. I ask any one to tell me upon
what measure or upon what man the abolitionists of
this country can ever again muster their legions as
they did in 1856 ? Kansas is squeezed dry. It stinks
in the nostrils of all people. They can do no more
there. Will they attempt a " cry " against the Supreme
Court for the Dred Scott decision ? What is there in
that to inflame popular sentiment ? It is always uphill
business to agitate against a judiciary, but especially
against the Supreme Court of the United States, which
the northern people have been taught to revere as the
bulwark of their liberties. Will they demand the
abolition of slavery in the District of Columbia ? They
have never been able to do much with that, though
they have often tried. That issue is a little too practi-
cal and too dangerous. Not many are bold enough
to embark in it. They might as well make the
question of disunion nakedly. Will they take up the
abstract, and, probably, never again to be other than
al; s tr::_ ct, proposition of "no more slave States? " They
have done that. They have already split upon it.
The northwest will not take it, and the free States, at
bottom, all want Cuba. They love molasses, and
hanker after free trade with that rich island. Where,
then, are they to go? I cannot see. They do not
appear to see themselves. Will any one state the