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every single phase of British of the Hutchinson letters, the and European extravagance, author gives us a long disserta&c., prevailed in America. tion on the misuse of the mails Cock-fighting, gambling, horse- by Ministers in England at the racing, drinking, the frenzy of time. He does not face the fashion, the fury of personal fact that every nation in the ambition, the vices which world has laws to prevent its sprang from
wild life in mails from being misused. And the woods and from the slave he ignores the well-known fact institutions of the South, all that in the colonies in those prevailed in remarkable days it was the common pracmanner in the colonies before tice of even the
mail1776, and were increased in carriers to read the letters they intensity after the struggle was carried; and that Washington over.
We have the books at and his friends corresponded in our hand and the list of the cipher for mutual protection. pages; but the reader would Franklin was perfectly familiar not care to have the quotations with the practice. And when inflicted upon him.
the Hutchinson letters To justify the hostility of into his hands, he very deliberAmericans to the English in ately used them in such a the colonies, we are told that manner as to make their ultistrangers in England were mate publicity certain. He treated with rudeness if they cunningly endeavoured to avoid did
not travel in coaches. personal responsibility. He imTramps of any kind have posed a quasi - secrecy on his never, save in our own day, American correspondents as to had much consideration. But copying, but not as to reading. if Sir George Trevelyan will And he did not avow his share consult
any in the transaction in England American historian, he will till after a duel had been fought find that strangers dreaded regarding it. His conduct has the horrible rudeness, dis- been palliated, but never dehonesty, and inhospitality of fended or excused. The author the Dutch in the Albany in sequence gives us the old district much as they story that Franklin wore at dreaded the savages.
And Versailles on signing the Declarthe unfortunate Chevalier ation of Independence the very Pontgibaud could tell him coat which he wore when he how, coming to America to was insulted regarding those fight for American liberty letters by Wedderburne in the under Lafayette, the ship he Privy Council. Mr Wharton, came in was plundered by in the appendix to his Digest Southern patriots, his personal of American International Law, baggage stolen, and himself has long ago, it seems to us, committed to the “charity” disposed of that story. It ought of the people by Thomas so to die. Jefferson !
We are told at great length To justify the use by Franklin that the destiny of America was
disposed of by politicians in military, I never saw before, and I England, who were indifferent pray God's mercy I may never see and contemptuous and corrupt,
again." and therefore unfit to rule over A letter like that should have a free set of colonies of presum- checked the desire to justify ably superior character. We rebellion in America because have at hand The Life of John there was corruption in EngJay' (1891), and on page 157 land.
land. But the science of logic we read concerning the doings suffers much at our author's of the Continental Congress : hands.
The dearth of public spirit to “Some thirty years afterwards Gouverneur Morris was sitting over
which Washington refers arose the polished mahogany at Bedford from an obvious cause. The with John Jay, when he suddenly country at large had been comejaculated, through clouds of smoke, mitted to rebellion without its ‘Jay, what a set of d--d scoundrels we had in that Second Congress !'
consent. The popular heart Yes,' said Jay, that we had, and was not in the enterprise. The he knocked the ashes from his pipe.” greatest number of people, the And we have also, among other greatest amount of property,
were on the side of the Crown. things, at hand Mr M Master's
But all the rebellions of history · With the Fathers,' and at
have been made by noisy and page 71 we read :
aggressive minorities; and the “A very little study of long-for- minority in the Colonies was gotten politics will sutlice to show noisy, aggressive, organised, and that in filibustering and gerrymander
Some were banking, in stealing governorships and interested. legislatures, in using force at the rupt, some were under sumpolls, in colonising and distributing mons
before the patronage to whom patronage is due, courts, some aspired to jobs in all the frauds and tricks that go to make up the worst form of practical in the army, some were jealous politics, the men who founded our
of the social prominence of the state and national governments were
Tories, some (and Washington always our equals and often our
was among the number) had masters."
to pluck” with the Sir George Trevelyan's studies regular officers, who had not in this direction have evidently cordially recognised their mi
But they not gone very far.
That there were included at least a letter of
some who were zealously and Washington's which ought to honestly in arms no one need have quickened his intelligence. doubt; but they were few in In October 1776, when the number. The ranks were filled "patriots” were engaged in ac
with criminals, foreigners, and tual conflict for their "liberty,'
failures in the industrial occuWashington wrote:
pations. The wonder is that
they all fought so well. The “Such a dearth of public spirit and “ Tories ” were not all on the such a want of virtue ; such stock side of the Crown, though jobbing and fertility in all the low arts to obtain advantages of one kind against the rebellion. There or another in this great change of were Tories who claimed that
the Colonies had grievances, royal governors had at all but contended justly that these times the greatest difficulty in grievances could be redressed inducing the colonies to provide without rebellion. There were even for their own local defence. Tories in England who took But for the royal troops the the same view : the repeal of colonies could never have made the Stamp Act, and the vari- head against the French. If ous ineffective propositions for they took Louisburg, it was a peaceful settlement made pre- when the defences were weak, vious to and during the con- the French garrison feeble, and flict, prove this. The Whigs when a British fleet had cut off in England ambitious of office, the hopes of reinforcement. and the Whigs in America And the crowning victory at anxious for the repudiation Quebec was not shared in by of their own debts and for them. In a volume of essays the confiscation of their neigh- and addresses by Mr Mellen bours' property, made reform Chamberlain, long the librarian impossible except at the cost of the great Boston Public of successful rebellion and all Library, published in 1898, we its terrible cost in blood and read as follows :treasure. Sir George Trevelyan and those who think with him volution is neither romantic nor
“American history before the Renow claim for the Whigs on picturesque, nor a whole is it both sides of the Atlantic the striking. It is barren of incidents, name of patriots; but no Hay- lacks great characters, contributes raddin Maugrabin ever
little or nothing to statesmanship,
war, or policy; and still less, if more awkwardly the herald's possible, to literature or art. The garments he was not accus- glory of Wolfe is not our glory. The tomed to wear. The original foot of no colonial soldier climbed the impostor was hung for his steeps or trod the heights behind
Quebec, and none but the veteran escapade. His imitators have troops of England heard the triumbeen allowed to
their phant cry “They run!' or caught the imposture so long that they hero's parting words, “I die content !"" have come to think they were born in it.
Sir George Trevelyan will In order to throw a shade of have to revise his volume careingratitude on the royal cause,
fully for a future edition; and Sir George Trevelyan contends must either enlarge it with exthat the colonials had fought planations and apologies or refor Great Britain and had duce it greatly by judicious
omissions. helped to win from France the dominion of the continent. The
When he details and disclaim is without just foundation.
cusses the events that precipiThe colonials had not a ship that tated the conflict, his method could face a man-of-war. They is misleading and not strictly had no regular forces, and their honest. Of the “Boston Masoccasional levies were reluctantly
sacre, says: provided, poorly supplied, and
“On the evening of the 5th March indifferently disciplined. The 1770 there came a short and sharp
collision between a handful of soldiers This is not history
it and a small crowd, voluble in abuse, should be written. The local and too free with clubs and snow
militia had been stealing royal balls. There was a sputter of mus. ketry, and five or six civilians dropped
stores. They were in a state down dead or dying. That was the of quasi-rebellion.
The royal Boston massacre.”
troops were going to recover He does not tell us that the royal property or destroy the mob has been described even munitions of rebels. The local by American historians as militia had no right to be in howling gang of miscreants, arms. Being in arms, they that the life of a sentry was
had to suffer the consequences. in danger, that his comrades They fired first, and then ran had to come to his rescue, that away. Later on they gathered part of the firing was without from all quarters, and literally orders, and that the judge who murdered the troops on their tried the officer in charge con
return. It was a kind of bushgratulated him upon his con- fighting, of which there was duct, and expressed his disgust much during the war; and for the conduct of the crowd. every episode of the kind is He does indeed detail the trial termed in their histories a of Captain Preston, but mainly" battle,” and every man in for the purpose of pointing out command is a “general.” how generous the lawyers were Of the tea-story the account to defend him and how honest is brief enough : "Boston gratwere the jury who gave the ified the curiosity of an enerverdict in his favour. It is not getic patriot who expressed a much to say of the profession wish to see if tea could be of the law that its members made with salt-water." That do their duty like gentlemen; is all
. But we are not informed and it is not much to say of that the affair was premedia jury that they were not mur
tated; that men disguised as derers determined to give a Indians had been drilled for verdict against evidence. The the occasion; that the real choice, for lawyers and jury, reason at work was not patbetween doing their duty and riotism but profit; that the incurring eternal infamy was
tea was offensive not because not a perplexing one.
of the duty, but of the fact When the author tells us
that it could be sold cheaper of the affair at Lexington than the smuggled tea the he is equally misleading.
He Hancocks and others had stored says :
The away for the market.
men who had the tea destroyed • At four in the morning, just as an April day was breaking, they (the
were not merely afraid of their British detachment) reached the vil- profit; they were also in terror lage of Lexington, and found sixty or of prosecution at law for heavy seventy of the local militia waiting penalties. A rebellion had befor them on the common. Firing
come essential to them to save ensued, and the Americans were dispersed, leaving seven of their them from the operation of the number dead or dying."
law. On the morning of the VOL. CLXV. —NO, MI.