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tion of 1812, the Federalists had lost New Hampshire, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, and a fraction of Maryland
After the election, Gen. Jackson, who was a warm friend of Monroe, wrote to him respecting the existing state of parties, and advising him to effect an obliteration of the old distinctions, by forming his cabinet in part from each party, and extending his confidence to the Federalists as well as to Republicans. "Now is the time," he says, " to exterminate that monster called Party spirit." The General was little versed in politics, but he had learned more before he came to the Presidency himself. Mr. Monroe explains to him his error. "The chief magistrate ought not to be the head of a party," he admits, but he cannot lean on opponents for support. He does not regard the causes of party divisions as extinct. He regards the reduction of the Federal party as owing to their course in the war, "the daring measure of the Hartford Convention," &c. To extend confidence to their leaders would injure the party which had elected him, and would lessen the the ignominy due to these acts of the opposition. He is favorable, however, to the proposed union of the parties, and relies on their gradual seduction of the mass of the Federalists from their leaders, into the Republican party, as the true means of effecting that object. The event proved the expectations of Mr. Monroe to be well
The last message of Mr. Madison indicated the necessity of imposing yet higher duties, to afford the manufacturers proper encouragement-recommended an additional department in the executive branch of the government-the remodification of the Judiciary, to relieve the Judges of the Supreme Court from "itinerary fatigues," (as intended in the act passed in John Adams's administration, and repealed early in Jefferson's) and urged again an amendment to the Constitution to enable the construction of a system of roads and canals. The Bank, and the whole system of policy lately adopted, was highly eulogized. The party in Congress, however, (Mr. Calhoun leading in this matter,) still maintaining that the power was already granted, and should be exercised.
The journey of Mr. Monroe, soon after his inauguration, to the eastward, much facilitated the object of the extinction of the Federal party (that we have seen was designed instead of a union.) He was treated with the highest consideration by the Federalists, and in return, he compli mented their leaders by personal visits. In Boston, he attended a ball given by Harrison Grey Otis, and called upon James Lloyd, Josiah Quincy, Thomas H. Perkins, Ex-Gov. Gore, and other prominent men of the party. As a farther evidence of their good feelings, a dinner was given at Boston in honor of the new Secretary of State, John Q. Adams. The President liked the party better for what he saw, and doubted not now their attachment to the Union. His policy towards them, however, was not changed. Farther efforts for amalgamation followed, encouraged by some of the leading Republican papers, as the Aurora, edited by Wm. Duane, at Philadelphia, and the Olive Branch, by Carey; the Boston Centinel, edited by Major Russell, the leading Federal paper in New England, co-operated in the effort; but the leading republican journal of New England, the Chronicle and Patriot, on the other hand opposed the scheme, and was joined by other journals of the party. The project failed, but the depletion of the Federal party continued.
In April, 1817, Connecticut passed into the hands of the Republicans. From the organization of the government until this year, Connecticut had, without interruption, maintained Federalism in both her national and State influence, having held out against the re-election of Jefferson, when every other New England State supported him, and contributed nine out of the fourteen votes then cast for Pinckney. Delaware, alone, of all the other States, had uniformly voted against the Republican Presidential candidates. Oliver Wolcott, an adherent of the Republican party from the period of the late war, was elected Governor of Connecticut. Rhode Island was partially revolutionized at the same time by the election of Nehemiah R. Knight, as Governor. Vermont had returned to her former position in 1815. In 1819, there were but 25 Federalists in the House of Representatives of the United States out of 186 members; from New England there
were 35 Republicans and six Federalists, there being a few years before 38 Federalists to three Republicans. In 1819, Maryland fell into the hands of the Republicans. In 1820, the Federalists made no effort regarding the Presidential election, and were broken as a national party; only fragments remained, confined to State influence, and these were dying out one by one. The same year, they united in Pennsylvania with the radical Republicans in support of Gen. Hiester for Governor, who was elected by their aid, and in New Hampshire, Vermont, and Rhode Island brought forward no State ticket. In 1822, Delaware surrendered, the State government being for the first time within thirty years Republican in all its branches. In 1823, Gov. Brooks retired from the chief magistracy of Massachusetts, which would have been revolutionized ere this but for his personal popularity. To succeed him, the Federalists brought forward their accomplished leader, Harrison Grey Otis; the Republicans, William Eustis, formerly Secretary of War, with Levi Lincoln for Lieutenant Governor. The latter were elected with about 4000 majority, with a strongly Republican Legislature, and the Federal sway passed away forever from Massachusetts.
Monroe adhered fully to the "vain ideas" (to repeat Mr. Polk's phrase,) of his predecessor. He urged repeatedly the addition to the powers of the Constitution -recommended again and again higher duties for the protection of manufactures, and a large class of specific in place of ad valorem duties were finally determined upon. In his second Inaugural, he intimates that he may recommend, at this time of profound peace, the imposition of "Internal Duties and Excises." We should have revenue, he thinks, "without relying solely on the precarious resource of foreign commerce;" and he is satisfied the internal taxation will enhance the price of produce, and promote manufactures, in connection with the outward duties.
A universal party cannot exist; as the Federalists decayed, the administration party began to be agitated, and show symptoms of disorganization. On nearly all questions of any magnitude the schismatic spirit appeared, though never was there less apparently to excite divisional feelings.
The subjects of Internal Improvements, the enlargement of the powers of the Constitution, the United States Bank inquiry, the affair of Gen. Jackson with the Spanish government of Florida, his execution of Arbuthnot and Ambrister, the Florida treaty, the cession of Texas, the funding system, the great system of fortifications, the army, the navy, the protective policy, the South American question, his enlarged expenditures, all these were matters of debate in Congress and in public journals of the party, in all of which the one end was in view on one side, (that side not being always identical) to cast censure upon the President, and bring up permanently a counterpolicy to that of the administration. The opposition was often ascendant in Congress, and on a portion of these matters was in the lead of Mr. Clay. The members of no other section were united and uniform in support of the administration but those of New England, and their powcrful aid (between 30 and 40 votes) alone, saved the administration from a number of defeats. All this opposition, however, was doubtless intended less against Mr. Monroe than as a preparation for the struggle to take place for the succession. These were the incipient steps for the formation of new parties.
Mr. Monroe had but just entered upon his second term when the question began to be debated who should come next. New England confidently offered the Secretary of State, Georgia, the Secretary of the Treasury, South Carolina, Mr. Lowndes, and finally the Secretary of War; Kentucky and other Western States, Mr. Clay; Tennessee, Gen. Jackson. Adams and Jackson were understood to be identified with Mr. Monroe's policy, the rest more or less in favor of modifications of it. The contest was, however, to be local. The Northern, central, and Western sections of the party, each believed it to be now its own turn to furnish a President, and the South thought it not too much assurance to put forward its claims again. Mr. Crawford being deemed the strongest candidate in Congress, the friends of all the others determined to dispense with a Congressional caucus, the general sentiment of the people which had become averse to that mode of nomination sustaining them. Mr. Crawford's friends, stand
ing alone, insisted on the selection of candidates being made "according to the accustomed usage of the party," and called a caucus, which was attended by sixty-six only out of two hundred and sixty-one members, a majority from every section being absent. Mr. Van Buren was the chief actor in this meeting. Mr. Crawford's nomination, with that of Mr. Gallatin for Vice President, was heralded to the nation as the "Republican nomination made in the usual form," but Mr. Crawford's prospect vanished from that moment. Without seeking this adventitious aid, Mr. Crawford would have stood on a fair level with the others, and been equally eligible to a combination with either one. The nomination raised him to that "bad eminence" that he became the butt of opposition to all others, who were ready to combine in every degree necessary to his defeat. Mr. Calhoun was supported in common by the Adams and Jackson parties for Vice President, (he having withdrawn from the Presidential race,) and a good feeling between the friends of these two was so prevalent, that had either of them been removed from the canvass his party would have united in mass upon the other.
The remnant of the Federalists was variously divided between three of the candidates. In New England sectional pride and the hope of sectional influence brought them generally to the support of Mr. Adams, though of the small party formed for Mr. Crawford in Massachusetts, they composed the larger part. In Pennsylvania and New Jersey they were nearly en masse for Jackson, expecting of none but him, an effectual disregard of old party lines. In Delaware, they generally pronounced for Mr. Crawford, (6 as the man who comes nearest being a Federalist." Mr. Clay could claim none of them, or too few to be heard of, among his supporters.
The Adams and Jackson parties increased very rapidly towards the close of the canvass, the hopes of the other parties sinking as fast. Mr. Adams was certainly the most popular candidate in the field, his party extending more to all sections than that of any of the others. An Adams electoral ticket was formed in nearly every State, with a respectable support, and so far as the choice was made by the people, he had a considerable plurality of the
popular votes. Beyond New England, (where there was but a shadow of support for all others,) the vote of the following States shows his strength: Ohio, Clay 19,255, Jackson 18,489, Adams 12,280; Maryland, Adams 14,632, Jackson 14,523, yet the singular fruits of the district system in Maryland, were to give Jackson seven, Adams three of the electoral votes. In Virginia, Crawford about 7,500, Adams 3,500, Jackson 2,200, Clay 1,200. Adams stood close to Jackson also in Louisiana and Illinois, carrying two electors in the former, and one in the latter, and was ahead of Crawford and Clay in Alabama and Mississippi, with a good vote in Indiana. In North Carolina his friends were strong enough to take that State from Crawford by throwing their weight into the scale of Jackson. To the sore disappointment of the Crawford men, the Legislature of New York gave two-thirds the electoral votes of that State to Adams, and the people would doubtless have given him as large a proportion. The whole vote was settled at 99 for Jackson, 84 for Adams, 41 for Crawford, 37 for Clay.
From the country at large, the contest was transferred to the House of Representatives, narrowed to three of the candidates, and the sentiment of the House limited it further to Adams and Jackson. Between the two, Mr. Clay and his 21 friends in the House, could feel no hesitation-they decided the election promptly in favor of Mr. Adams.
Mr. Clay accepting the Secretaryship under Mr. Adams, two of the new parties were thus amalgamated, and the fusion of the other two was inevitable. And just such an union, though not this exact union, was apparent from the outset. The quadrangular battling of the popular canvass amounted to this-it drew out the elements for two new parties, ready for a sudden marshalling, and designated Adams and Jackson as the grand leaders, and the two others for subordinates, leaving choice or fortune to fix their respective attachments. The whole arrangement, the redivision of parties for a second political period was completed in effect, if not in terms, the instant Mr. Clay resolved to make John Quincy Adams President.
Mr. Adams immediately attempted the conciliating policy. Having one of his
rivals already in his support, he offered the second place in his cabinet to another, Mr. Crawford, who declining its acceptance, Mr. Barbour, a friend of that gentleman, was placed in the War Department, and Mr. McLean, a Jackson man, was appointed Postmaster General. This effort at conciliation, persisted in after it had too plainly failed, was a leading cause of Mr. Adam's defeat in 1828.
Mr. Adams continued the general policy of the former Republican administrations, and particularly of Monroe's, of which he had had so important a part in the direction. But though that policy was popular in itself, and at another time might have secured the full triumph of Mr. Adams, there were circumstances working with stronger effects. Still the milder influence of the administration was not without result. Its party was placed on a firm footing; New Jersey and Delaware were reclaimed from the opposition; in Pennsylvania even, from the few thousands who voted for either Adams or Clay in 1820, a party of 50,000 was built up by 1828. In the West, Mr. Clay's large strength was paralyzed, because the West preferred a Western man, and was excited by military glory, yet Jackson carried Ohio by only 2,201 majority in a vote of 128,993, and Louisiana by only 527 majority. And though in other States the Jackson fever
swept like a tornado, the defeat was not so overwhelmingly decisive in regard to public opinion as the division of electoral votes made apparent. While Mr. Adams had less than one-third of the votes of the electors, he received five-elevenths of the popular vote of the Union. Many have believed the case was decided from the moment the Jackson and Crawford parties united. It was not so. The prospect of the administration was so good in 1826 in the result of the State Elections, that the Jackson men felt a little discouraged, and in 1827 the prospect was equally fair. A wiser politician than Mr. Adams would have saved himself in his position, for it was no difficult task to a shrewd party manager. Whether Jefferson would have done it, we think little of a problem. Under all disadvantages, the loss of the strong rallying point of Jackson's popularity would have subjected the opposition to a signal defeat.
From the accession of Jackson the history of parties is known to all. For the third time since its formation, (the ordinary variations only, no radical change or reorganization having occurred to either,) the party which supported Mr. Adams is predominant in the nation, and in control of the government, (though as yet with but a partially effective power for administration.)
LIFE AND WRITINGS OF COLERIDGE.
Ir is a painful and ridiculous phenomenon in literature, the conversion of the characters of men of genius and power, into a kind of raw material for rhetoricians and book mechanics. As a record, either of affection, admiration, or of hatred, a biography may be written; or it may be treated as the material of history, in a spirit perfectly dispassionate; or for a moral purpose, to hold out a grand example of virtue and its fruits, or of vice and its punishments; or better still, for both in one but the world owes those no thanks who convert the sacred ashes of the dead into a vendible commodity. A coarse and wretched art must that be which covers the marble statue with white paint, or whose works may be compared with those of plumbers, who cast lead into the effigies of great men, to be sold by weight to elude the excise. Posterity however is just, and the punishment of these leaden biographers is to have their leaden productions clapped over themselves, like an extinguisher. But, of all biographies, those are the least agreeable, which, like Cottle's Coleridge, mingle admiration and contempt; the vanity of the writer, protecting itself against the overshadowing greatness of its theme, by setting forth the littlenesses and the faults of a hero by themselves, and calling attention to them in detail and individually-a mode of treatment which subjects the biographer to the charge either of incapacity or of malignity.
To pronounce Hercules a god, and at the same time tap him on the shoulder for a good fellow with his failings;-to worship with a prodigality of insolent praise; to profess a deep respect, while minutely telling a debasing anecdote; to glory in the friendship of one whom they familiarly handle; these are the traces of envy, and of a conceit, so far malignant, it is willing to make the noblest reputation a sacrifice to its own ordinary and contemptible shrewdness.
The honest enemy may vent undisguised hostility: but how hateful that creature, a friend and enemy in the same skin. Love is blind, and either cannot see faults, or sees them in the light of failings; it presents the totality of a character as excellent and amiable; touching upon the faulty parts lightly, and as if compelled to do so; but that man is no moralist, and is not a good man, nor a christian, who sets up his friend and his protegé to the scorn of posterity.
That great men have their vices and follies, very little acuteness is needed to observe; nor is the least ability required to commemorate them: all that is needed for that purpose is merely a servile, false, and garrulous tongue: however much they may amuse us on the instant, they leave no respect for the narrator, and if devoid of pith and humor, excite only disgust.
The charge of immorality and indiscretion has been laid at the door of Lamartine, for having taken a Robespierre for a rhetorical exercise. It has been assumed that the praise of Robespierre, by a Lamartine, condemns a Lamartine: but it is at least worthy the enquiry whether there be not something magnanimous and praiseworthy in the attempt, however mistaken, to separate the virtues, even of the lowest of mankind, from the mountainous rubbish of error under which they lie buried in such a character,-whether the spirit of such a biographer is not more in comformity with the christian rule, than that of the pietist who has dragged to light, and published to the world, the errors and weaknesses of one of the noblest minds that ever came into being.
To call up by rhetorical incantations, in the spongy air of imagination, mere dreamwrought phantasms, imaginary Robespierres, whose existence the first ray of historical truth must dissipate, may be a task unworthy of a great author; and we know that the good sense of mankind visits