James Pond's Markesan Journal:
The John Parker Exchanges,1861
On April 26, 1861, twelve days after the surrender of Fort Sumter marked the beginning of the American Civil War, James B. Pond, twenty-three-year-old editor of the Republican weekly, The Markesan Journal, published an inflammatory editorial questioning the patriotism of local citizens he chose not to name. His editorial precipitated an emotional exchange of letters and additional editorials over the succeeding month that in microcosm represents the clash of fears, uncertainties, and fervent patriotism brought on by the first months of the war throughout the North.
The village of Markesan in Green Lake County was already at a political flash point. Only nine months earlier, on August 1, 1860, anti-slavery men from Ripon, 15 miles down the road, had broken into the Milwaukee County jail to free Sheman M. Booth, the notorious abolitionist editor of The Free Democrat. Booth, being held in conjunction with an 1854 incident in which he advocated and perhaps triggered the freeing of an escaped slave, Joshua Glover, had become the principal in a nationally celebrated test of the Fugitive Slave law. For the next three months, friends and sympathizers in western Fond du Lac and eastern Green Lake counties had secluded and, by threatening bloodshed, protected him from recapture by federal and county marshals. While sympathetic state legislators drafted papers calling for the state to secede from the Union over enforcement of the law, area Democrats like David Mapes in Ripon unambiguously condemned Booth and his admirers. (See Ripon's Booth War)
Pond himself was the son of an abolitionist and with him apparently had served as a link in the underground railroad in Fond du Lac County. At age eighteen he had left the family farm in the town of Alto in southwestern Fond du Lac County to join the anti-slavery cause in the Kansas Territory and fight alongside John Brown. In April, 1861, he was predictably, therefore, in the grip of a fervent patriotism when he penned his editorial. Whether he also saw it as an opportunity to stimulate the circulation of his struggling paper is open to speculation, but clearly he felt, as he would enunciate only five months later in his final editorial before organizing Company C of the Third Wisconsin Cavalry, "in times like these, when the principles of free government are being undermined and the rights of men are being ignored and trampled upon, nothing should prevent any man who is able to shoulder his musket from rallying in the defense of RIGHT." [Markesan Journal, 2:50, October 26, 1861]
Although two years later he would single-handedly wield a howitzer to repel an attack by Quantrill at Baxter Springs, Kansas, an act that would earn him the Medal of Honor, Pond's April 26 editorial [Markesan Journal, 2:23, p. 2] was the first salvo from his, at that time, merely metaphorical musket:
TRAITORS IN MARKESAN
Strange as it may seem, there are at this time, when our country is involved in a desperate struggle for the maintenance of political and religious freedom, men in our midst who are daily in the habit of expressing sympathy for the rebels, who have rebelled against the purest and most magnanimous government on earth, and who are determined to rob us here at the North, of our dearly bought liberties, and trample our free institutions in the dust. Should the rebels succeed in this struggle, slavery will be planted on every inch of ground that is now occupied as homes of the free.
Notwithstanding the awful condition that we are placed in, there are men--no not men ! there are traitors in Markesan ! Thank God, there are but a few, and they are marked. The traitors of 1861 will be long remembered--their names will go down to posterity, recorded upon the pages of history, with the word disgrace written opposite each of them. It is indeed humiliating to us to be obliged to make this public acknowledgement, but such is the case. But our traitors do not possess enough of intelligence to do us or the cause we are called upon to defend, any harm. Our advice to them is, to join the Southern army at once, where they can enjoy privileges so much more congenial to their tastes.
While the editorial could not help but be incendiary, thrown as it was into the tinder box of Green Lake County, Pond's intent is not completely obvious. In naming no one, he may have intended it simply as a rallying cry for support of the war effort. If so, it represents a youthful naivete. No copy of the following issue of May 3 [2:24] survives in the collections of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, but it apparently included a second editorial along the same lines and succeeded in stirring up the countryside to such a pitch that Pond felt compelled to pen a third editorial in his May 10 issue [2:25, page 3 "Local Department"] in an attempt to clarify the message. In that issue, in an effort to cool down some of his more impressionable readers, Pond exercised a greater measure of civic responsibility in denying that his original pronouncements had been directed at John Parker, a well-known English emigrant, local businessman, and Democrat:
IS JOHN PARKER A TRAITOR?
We have heard through numerous sources during the past two weeks, that a mob was forming at Marquette, for the purpose of coming to Markesan and "cleaning out" John Parker, and giving him a "new dress." We have heard that at Berlin it was understood that JOHN PARKER of Markesan , was a "traitor," and that it was a wonder that the citizens of this village did not burn him out! We have been told that JOHN PARKER, while in Milwaukee a short time since, was given two hours to leave that city, or have a coat of tar and feathers! While at Fairwater the other day, we were told that JOHN PARKER was hung in effigy at Markesan on the night of the 27 ult.
Now we would ask of the "patriotic" individuals who have circulated these reports, who it was that raised the first American flag over his store, shortly after the commencement of the Rebellion against our government, and which is now proudly floating over his building? Who is it that has been foremost in making Union speeches, and declaring anew his fidelity to the Constitution and the Laws, at our Union meetings? Who has offered to pay the most money out of his own pocket, for the purpose of putting down the present Rebellion against our common government? Who hired teams, and furnished flag, to carry the cannon and artillery company from this place to attend the Union meeting at the Centre House, no longer ago than last Saturday? Who is it that always pays these little incidental expenses of public meetings in our village? It is well known by all of our citizens who it is. It is JOHN PARKER, this same "traitor" that we hear so much about whenever a few miles away from home.
We would here say, for the benefit of this ignorant class who think that when we say "traitor" we mean "Democrat," that there is a great distinction between the two terms. A traitor is one who violates his allegiance and betrays his country. A Democrat is one who adheres to a government by the people. We hope this explanation will be sufficient to put a stop to further threats of citizens of neighboring towns coming here to mob JOHN PARKER, the "leader of the traitors." We have said heretofore, that there are traitors in and around Markesan, and as yet we do not feel disposed to take back one word of the ascertion. [sic] We don't mean JOHN PARKER, either.--We have them spotted, and we would advise them to keep their "secessionism" a little nearer home.
We know what we speaketh when we say, that JOHN PARKER will do more than double that of any other person in Markesan to carry on this war. Those individuals who think they cannot see anything perfect except when they look in a mirror, had better stop and consider, and "he that is found without sin, let him cast the first stone."
Whether Pond orchestrated it or not, the same issue of May 10 included a letter to similar effect from a community physician, J. A. Burt, a member of the committee designated to prepare resolutions during the Booth affair in Ripon:
To the Public
It has been reported in this village, and in other places in this county, that I have declared our fellow townsman, John Parker, Esq., a 'traitor and rebel.' Now nothing could be further from the truth than the foregoing statement. I have no right, nor never had to defame Mr. Parker in that way. I never exchanged a word with him upon war matters, nor never heard him utter an opinion upon the subject, and why so many suspicious eyes are cast upon Mr. P. at the present time, is more than I can account for. I believe Mr. Parker is just as good a patriot as any in our midst, and will probably do as much to carry on the war as many of his defamers who feel so extraordinary bad that they bid fair to run the whole thing into the ground. I make this public explanation without the knowledge of Mr. Parker, and in justice to myself, as well as to that gentleman. I pronounce the charge against me to be base, malicious and false.
J. A. BURT, M.D.
Markesan, May 10, 1861
Neither public apology satisfied the apparently feisty Mr. Parker, for he contributed a somewhat more eloquent letter of his own in the following issue of May 17 [2:26, page 2] expressing indignation as well as offering a lecture on the rights even of Democrats to engage in free speech, regardless of the war:
Sir: Several weeks ago you stated officially that there were traitors in Markesan. Of course this startling announcement put everybody on the alert, to discover who they could be, and what they were doing. The news went abroad. Some were for coming immediately to the rescue, and seizing the traitors and dealing summarily with them. Under this state of the public mind, in your next issue you again added fuel to the flame by announcing that one of the traitors had been hung! (only in effigy, as afterwards discovered,) much to the chagrin of the pretended "law and order" party, the said effigy having a card pinned on his trousers which read "Die! Traitors, Die!" You then gave it as your opinion that they (the traitors) had better take warning. Your next editorial is headed, "John Parker a Traitor," and like many other headings, is not proved in the sequel. According to your own account you have set the public at work a guessing who the traitors are, instead of immediately calling upon the Marshal, and having them arrested, and unfortunately for you, as well as myself, public opinion has designated me as one of the set. You say this is not so, but you have got your eye on them, and have them "spotted." Now however grateful I may feel for your testimony in my favor, it does not absolve me from my duty, which is to insist that you name the traitors to the Marshal and be prepared with your testimony to substantiate your charge, or forever hold your peace. The public will then be enabled to judge whether you, as editor of a paper, are a good sentinel, watching carefully the interests of the people, or whether you wantonly throw firebrands in their midst. Perhaps it would be well here to say something in regard to myself, and the charges made against me. It is well known that I am Englishman by birth, having emigrated in 1838. I am now a naturalized American citizen--have taken the oath repeatedly (without mental reservation, or higher law attachments) to support the constitution of the United States, and the State of Wisconsin, and I intend to keep that oath, and exercise my privileges under it. Free speech is granted in our constitution, and I intend to use it, I trust, without abusing it. My political opinions are opposed to the present Administration, both United States and State, as well as the majority of the people of the State, but still the law gives me the right of enjoying my own opinion unmolested, and I would here say that burning property is a very poor way to convince men that they are wrong, and hanging a poor use to put a man to. It can be practiced by both parties.
I am not an alarmist. I have sufficient faith in the people, when aroused, that they will put down all offences committed against the law, whether it be at the North, South, East or West.
I am not disposed to enter into an argument at this time as to the cause of our present difficulties, or to what party they may be ascribed to. It is sufficient for me that the President calls for aid to maintain the laws and the government. I respond, and I suppose that my money or my person will be just as acceptable if I am a Democrat, as it would be if I was a Republican or an Abolitionists [sic]. I may be wrong, but I think not. I claim to be a law abiding citizen, and want others to be the same, and shall not be intimidated by a lawless mob, into doing or saying things that my conscience disapproves. I trust this will be the last we shall hear about this matter. We have plenty to do without fighting at home about old party lines.
Pond felt compelled to append a note to Parker's letter to underscore the conciliatory intent of his third editorial, evidently genuine, although he also displays a certain amount of political dexterity in simultaneously taking what looks like a shot at a Democratic opponent in referring to "the way Mr. P. appears to have read" the previous editorial. [emphasis added]:
[We think that if Mr. Parker will read the third editorial above referred to, that he will find that he is mistaken in regard to the heading of the article. The heading was, "Is John Parker a Traitor?" instead of the way Mr. P. appears to have read it. We thought Mr. Parker had been wrongfully accused of being a traitor, and in what we considered justice to him, published the reports which had been circulated about the matter, and gave our opinion without consulting any one, and if we have misrepresented the matter, we are ready to take back what we have said. [--ED JOURNAL.]
As Parker suggested in his letter, this exchange apparently put the issue to rest. No additional editorials or letters directly raising the topic of "traitors in Markesan" were subsequently published in the Journal. Pond, in fact, appears to have learned a youthful lesson about the repercussions of accusations from the pulpit of his paper, for he directed no additional attacks specifically at the local citizenry while he remained as the Journal's editor. On May 24, in fact, he ran add additional apology in the form of a story from the Fond du Lac Reporter:
The Fond du Lac "Reporter" of the 18th, after quoting from our article on the question of Mr. Parker's unloyalty, says: "A better or truer Union man never set foot in Green Lake county.--Mr. Parker was some years a resident of Lamartin [sic], and is well and favorably known to our old settlers.["]
Parker, however, continued to play the political opposition for at least one more round of letters, an exchange between J. Stroud and Parker related to "commerce" and war funding. In their exchange we gain some insight into the reasons some of the citizenry may have thought him a traitor. The first letter, Stroud's, appeared in the May 31 issue [2:28, page 2] of the Journal:
MR. EDITOR:--Your commercial articles, although almost always interesting and ably written; seem a very convenient vehicle in which to carry on war against the banks in general, and especially they give the community an opportunity to take small doses of Democracy. The same sentiment which has its fling at the N. Y. "Tribune" in your last, has sneered at honest efforts made to attempt obedience to the call of Government for help to defend itself against persons who, because they have failed to elect their candidate , have seen fit to rebel and place the Union in peril.
It is a modest position to assume, when the Command[er]-in-Chief calls with the utmost urgency , for men and means to reply, "if it is necessary I am ready to pay, but hold on boys, the tax gatherer will soon be around, and this will be soon enough to do our part."
Markesan, by following this advice, may have the unenviable name of not raising a dollar for the prospective encouragement of any one who might by such action, see it safe and prudent, to have his family. You send no men. I defy you to produce another town in Wisconsin of our size that can say as much.
The Executive of the State thinks that the exigencies of the times, demand money to be raised to put the State on a footing to take care of itself, your money article by its innuendo, shows its disposition to block the protection of our government. The liberty of speech, so much insisted on, should be defined "unlimited license in its abuse." It should stop short of giving "aid and comfort" to enemies. No sane man will fail to see that this refusing to obey the call and embracing the action of our authorities is anything less. In this light I see a great propriety in your proposition to celebrate the 4th of July, by taking the oath of fidelity to the laws and Union.
Although this letter can be taken at first reading to have been directed at the Journal and its editor, Stroud's target was the "commercial articles" in the paper, the financial and commercial columns provided weekly by John Parker, that he felt were unduly inspired by the Democratic party line. The specific column mentioned by Stroud appeared in the May 24 edition of the Journal [2:27] and, following a "List of Banks and their Value," read as follows:
By this list it appears that the average value of all the bank bills in the State is 69 cents, and the average value of the so-called "discredited," only 10 cents less than an average, and only 16 cents less than the average value of the seventy banks, declared by the seventy owners of the same, to be worthy and good. The present buying rates of the discredited bills at the country banking houses is 40 cents; in Milwaukee they are quoted at 45a48c, payable in currency. This yields a profit to the buyer of 80 5/8 per cent, quite a shave for the unfortunate holder. This can be obviated in one way, but it is not practicable to small bill holders: The late Legislature provided that any person having $1,000 or more of any one bank's bills, could apply to the Controller and get bonds, which bonds, when sold, would now yield 69 cents in gold.
If it would not be deemed treason to the State, and comfort to the rebels, we would like to enquire how this matter has been bro't about? In the early settlement of the State the feeling was decidedly opposed to banks, but as the country settled the people appeared to manifest a disposition [to] be like other States and have banks, which sentiment ultimately prevailed. The legislature went to work and created a Banking Law, the principle [sic] features of which were as follows:
1st. Redemption in coin at the counters.
2d. Securities of the best approved qualities to be lodged with the Controller, to be increased on call of the Controller, if any depreciation took place.
3d. The creation of a new state office, called a "Controller," whose duty is should be [to] see the law carried out.
If the provisions had been carried out, we contend we should now have good currency in lieu of the present trash. There has been, at different times, "amendments["] to the law, if they can be so called; 1st, that railroad bonds should be taken by the Controller, but they proved to be so utterly worthless that they were not used to any great extent. It early appeared that the law needed amendment. Some people had become so enlightened in money matters that they effectually destroyed the operations of the law by locating their banking houses at such inaccessible points as only to be reache[d] by canoes, in summer, and dog trains in winter, (and this is supposed to be one great reason for levying a tax on dogs.) The legislature made a feeble attempt to avoid this, but were not successful.
This brings us down to the fall of 1860. It being apparent that the bankers sought southern securities in preference to northern of U. S., for the reason that they paid a higher rate of interest. Bonds purchased at 75 cents pay 6 per cent on the dollar, making it over 8 per cent on 75, and for this additional 2 per cent, they were willing to take the risk, (although warned by the "Tribune" and other papers that the south have been preparing for 30 years to secede,) and we think they should be made to abide by the folly of their own acts. But the legislature though different, and have suspended specie payment, and now appears a new feature in the programme. The people are alarmed and refuse the bills--the bankers are alarmed at the quantity on hand, and they call a convention of bankers, and determine to throw out forty banks as unworthy of credit, and pledge themselves to stay by one another (that is the seventy) till the 1st of December next, hoping by this move to inspire confidence. But we cannot think they will be able to do it. In the face of the figures, the unworthy of credit is worth in gold 59 cents; buy them at 40a45 and pay in currency worth 75 is rather too big a "BOO" to go down.
If the bankers have been foolish in investing their money in Southern bonds, let them bear the loss. If they want the confidence of the people let them put up their securities, and reduce the price of exchange, and they will have it.
It is to be hoped that the Legislature will adjourne soon, and may we never look upon their like again. The next difficulty we shall have to contend with, is raising $1,000,000, but I suppose the Legislature will find a way; they can do most anything, and have an individual construction of the constitution, independant [sic] of the construction of the Courts.
Parker's condemnation of the banks and of the Legislature's actions related to them had considerable validity, despite Stroud's protestations. As William Raney observes in his history of the state, Wisconsin: A Story of Progess (Appleton: Perrin Press, 1963):
In the years just before the Civil War some provisions of Wisconsin's banking system were not particularly sound. If one wanted to start a bank, he bought the bonds of one of the states or of the United States, and deposited them with the state bank comptroller, whereupon that official gave permission to issue state currency equal in value to the bonds just deposited. Unfortunately the would-be bankers were permitted to buy the cheapest state bonds on the market, which meant in practice that they bought those that expert opinion jusdged to be least safe. On January 1, 1860, there was on deposit with the comptroller a little over $5,000,000 in bonds, but $3,000,000 were bonds of five heavily indebted southern states. The banker got a double income on his investment. He received the interest on the bonds from the states which had issued them, and he received interest from those to whom he loaned the currency. Banks were supposed to serve the community in many ways, and there were many strong banks that did so; but there existed also "wildcat" banks founded merely to issue currency. They had their offices in inaccessible or unknown places, and in a crisis were quite unable to redeem in specie the currency they had issued. (pp. 167-168)
Apparently also having missed the opportunity to get his shots in during the Journal's first exchange with Parker, and despite Parker's ironic hope that his observations on the banks would not "be deemed treason," Stroud also not so delicately recalls Pond's original theme in suggesting that the objectionable financial writing effectively provided "'aid and comfort' to enemies." In any case, Stroud's letter did not escape the political reflexes of Mr. Parker, who responded in the subsequent issue of June 7 [2:29, page 2]:
In your last issue I noticed a communication from "J. Stroud," of our town, finding fault with the commercial articles which I have furnished your paper. It would be wholly impossible to please every one, and as that has not been my object, it is not to be supposed that some one, in fact many, would not be suited. It would not be proper for me to enter into a newspaper controversy in defense of my articles, and shall only depart in this instance for the reason that I think "J. Stroud's" objections are not so much against the commercial articles, as they are adverse to my political opinions, and makes this an excuse to administer sharp rebuke on me for daring to hold different doctrines to himself. He charges: 1st. That I have made it a convenient weapon to make war upon the banks. I am sorry to be so misinterpreted, even by him. It is the weak and imbecile Legislature who stepped in and protected the banks at the cost of the public, that I am at war with.
Charge 2d, that the community are treated with "small doses of Democracy." It should be well known to "J. Stroud" that there has always been to parties the "ins" and the "outs." The "ins," defend themselves, and the "outs" find fault with them.
In this instance, not without cause, I told that the Republican party by acts of the Controller and legislature, are responsible for our present monetary difficulties. If "J. Stroud" has read my articles, he there finds my reasons.
Charge 3d, "the same sentiment that had its fling at the N. Y. Tribune has sneered at the honest endeavors made in obedience to the call of the Government for men to suppress insurrection," &c. I certainly did not intend to cast a slur on the Tribune, but quoted it as an authority, it having the largest circulation, and consequently entitled to credit.
I think "J. Stroud" very tender in some places. I could give him some quotations from the Tribune since the fall election, that would convince most people that that paper was in favor of a peacable [sic] secession. The latter part of the charge I deny in toto and defy "J. Stroud" to the proof, confining himself to my commercial articles. I have my own opinion in regard to how troops are to be raised to put down rebellion, but have not discussed them in my commercial articles to my knowledge. I am not afraid to avow them, and for the benefit of "J. Stroud" will give them:
I believe the President and his advisors know how many men they want, and that Congress, when they meet, will empower the President to call for them and will vote money enough to keep them in service as long as wanted. The money so voted will constitute a part of the national debt, and will be a burden to be bourne by all alike, North and South, which would not be the case if raised by the States. The bonds of the United States, and treasury notes would be worth more in market than our State bonds. The authorities at Washington are better judges of the articles needed, and their quality as well as quantity, the manufacturies of arms , and making contracts for clothing and food being a part of their business. And again I do not think our State has the power under the Constitution to create a debt under the circumstances. See article 8, sec. 6, 7 and 9 of the Constitution.
I am not a lawyer, or a pretended one, but I should like to hear the opinion of the judges on the subject. Another reason is that the Legislature at their first session voted to raise $200,000, and at their late session have made it a million, together with twenty or thirty thousand dollars for contingent expenses, placed at the disposal of this Governor, and that he, (Gov. Randall,) at a meeting of the Governors of the Northern States, called to consult upon the best mode to put down the rebellion, did make a speech, (and now I hope that "J. Stroud" will not call this a fling) saying he was in favor of raising an army sufficient to blaze a road from the Mississippi to Montgomery and Charleston, and would not leave one stone upon another, till there should not be a place for the owl to hoot or the bittern to mourn, and that if he had the power of Jove, he would not only destroy the traitors, but the seed of the traitors. This language needs no comment, it is sufficiently plain. You may call it "free speech," or "unlimited license in its abuse."
On the Governor's return home he called an extra session of the Legislature, and they authorized the raising of six regiments, and voted a million to equip them. He is Commander-in-Chief of the State forces. My extreme modesty forbids me to say more. "J. Stroud" may draw his own inferences as the the mode the war is to be carried on if in such hands. Free speech and free territory was the watch word of the Republican party previous to November last Senator Seward as soon as he had entered the office of the Secretary of State, called the extension of the Wilmot proviso over the territories, an abstract question, and proved that we were quite safe from slavery without it, and three territories were immediately organized without it.
He (J. Stroud) has now only to make sneers at his free speech good, to prove that he only meant that we should have a right to talk, and when it interferes or differs with his doctrine, must be mobbed down.
The Democracy will not be behind in men and money to sustain the laws and the government; but do not let lose [sic] men's worst passions and advocate burning, extermination, and mob law, for they will find that the democracy are not with them in that.
I have already extended this article longer than I intended. Trusting that "J. Stroud," of our town, will not be afraid of this "dose," as it is perfectly harmless, being composed of a few ideas that occurred at the time of reading his communication.
In part at issue in this exchange is the political difference over who should be funding the war and raising the troops, the states or the government in Washington. Where Stroud wielded the rhetoric of "traitorious" comportment, Parker effectively wielded his of free speech and "mobocracy." It is of particular interest in his response that Parker apparently questions the identify of his correspondent in referring to him throughout in quotation marks, as if the name is not an actual one in the community.
Where Parker was successful in getting in the last word in his first exchange, in this one he apparently did not say enough to silence "J. Stroud," for one further communication appeared from that source in the June 14 issue [2:30, page 2]:Doubtless both sets of exchanges with Parker were good for Pond's readership. It remains to be answered whether this was part of his original intent. In this respect it is of interest to note that in its May 31 edition [2:28] the Journal published a full column advertisement from Parker announcing that he was selling or offering for rent his business, the "oldest store in the county." Not only does the ad make clear that Parker is quitting the "mercantile business," it also indicates that the Journal office itself was a tenant on the second floor of his building along with the Good Templar Lodge. What the relationship was between Pond and Parker, other than that of tenant and landlord, is purely speculative. However, it is also worth noting that by the end of 1862 the publisher of the Markesan Journal [Volume 1, "New Series,"] was none other than John Parker.
I should not recur to Mr. Parker's communication of last week, except to disabuse the public mind of a misconception with regard to the constitutionality of the act of the recent Legislature for raising money to suppress rebellion; &c.
I should presume your correspondent overlooked Sec. 7, Art. 8 of the Constitution, which says: "The Legislature may borrow money to repel invasion, suppress insurrection or defent the State in time of war."
I do not know what the lawyers say to this, but common sense would not limit us to $100,000. If so, we may suppress rebellion to that amount, and the balance must go ver to another year. No sir; it says suppress insurrection, the implication is, to borrow money sufficient for the purpose, whether one hundred thousand, or one million, less five thousand dollars to pay a Legislature, who are not willing to take such money as they give us. Cost what it may the Constitution authorizes the suppression of rebellion.
I see by the last "Wisconsin" that judges Dixon & Cole. have decided that law to be Constitutional. I copy what it says: "The Judges of the Supreme Court--Dixon and Cole--have given a written opinion that the laws authorizing the issue of State Bonds, are constitutional, and the bonds valid.--This will settle the question attempted to be raised by some evil disposed persons in the State." The last clause of the above I do not wish to apply to your correspondent, as the objection did not originate with him. I do not doubt but what he was perfectly conscientious in his objection, but it is evident he had not given Sec. 7 such careful consideration as it will bear.
I will not occupy your columns further than to say, I trust I have not grown so small in my views as to object to any man on account of his politics or a fair expression of opinion, and I will guarantee one thing, which is, when our democratic friends again defeat us as they almost always have done, you shall hear from us no talk of not yielding to democratic rule, and you shall hear no sounds of war coming up in any State where republicans [sic] may have failed to elect their candidate; or should any recreant republican, demoralized by the present condition of our country, and forgetful of the sacred obligation to render allegiance to a constitutional authority, dare raise his hands against the flag, so gloriously emblematic of our Union, we will in the spirit of the lamented Douglas, put our shoulder to yours and teach him the lesson which "Confederate" traitors are now learning."