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country ravaged by an unsparing enemy; they have felt the iron hand of oppression : they have felt that desolating feeling which borders on despair—the patriots despair of the public cause. When our illustrious countrymen heard of the sufferings of Greece, of the shrieks of women, the slaughter of children, and the dying groans of age—when they heard of Missolonghi's fall and Missolonghi's tears, and when they saw all Europe looking on this spectacle with folded arms, they might well have exclaimed with the eloquent Burke, “We thought ten thousand swords would have leaped from their scabbards to avenge their wrongs--but their age of chivalry is gone, that of sophisters, economists and calculators has succeeded, and the glory of Europe is extinguished forever.” But these illustrious men despaired not of the cause of Greece for they had seen the hour when in the fluctuating fortunes of war we had lost all but our honor-still Independence triumphed--they lived to hope that the wrongs of Greece would yet be avenged, and that the day would come when the banner of freemen would wave triumphantiy on the walls of Bizantium. Our countrymen had seen in half a century the new world revolutionized, and lived to hope that the old in another half century would follow its example—they saw their country, and they left her in peace with all the world—in the full tide of prosperity-in the steady march to higher and yet higher destinies—they could see no more--they died full of years, of honors and of glorythey sleep in peace.
Fellow Citizens, the monuments of other days are falling around us--but one solitary monument of the immortal Congress of '76 remains-long may he continue among us to receive the annual offerings of a nation's gratitude and respect. In a little time but few will be spared of that veteran and gallant band who were true to the cause of Independence in the darkest hour of our revolutionary stormssome yet remain with us : but like the illustrious Jefferson they devoted their lives and fortunes to the public cause, and like him they are
doomed in the twilight to feel the chills of poverty. There are few, and I now see some of them in this assembly, who fifty years ago braved summer and winter, the prison, the scalping knife and the sword—who toiled in blood for our Independence. The work of our ancestors is finished : ours is not, Fellow Citizens. We have their inheritance--it is great in power and glory--it is rich in wealth--let us make a pious and just use of it—let us not suffer the grey hairs of patriotism to go “ with sorrow to the grave.”
And now, Fellow Citizens, let us recur once more to the last will and testament of the immortal Jefferson. 6 I have done for my country and for all mankind, all that I could, and I now resign my soul, without fear, to my God, my daughter to my country”_his soul to his God-his daughter to his country. This is no affair of private charity-however pious and patriotic the motive, it is repugnant to the dignity of a nation of freemen—this is no state concern-the patriotic Jefferson recognized no such distinction—"My daughter to my country"_Fellow Citizens, she is yours-she is the daughter of your adoption-she shall be cherished and protected by twelve millions of freemen.
Let us Americans, in closing our solemnities, again advert to this astonishing coincidence of events. How beautiful and sublime a feature will that day appear in the history of our country-how wonderful to those who come after us how incomprehensible to others in some remote age, to whom these events will appear like the splendid fables of antiquity. They have given a new, a deeper, and a more solemn interest to our National Festival : and long after the last of our revolutionary Fathers shall have been gathered in immortal folds—in ages yet to come, shall we annually assemble round our council fires, not only to celebrate the deeds of our ancestors--not only in the language of the immortal Jefferson 6 to pledge our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honors” to maintain our Independence forever inviolate-but to tell of the wonders of that day, on which our illustrious countrymen were summoned together to appear before their God.
PRONOUNCED IN BALTIMORE, MARYLAND,
July, 20th 1826.
BY SAMUEL SMITH.
Friends and Fellow-Citizens !-I have been selected by the constituted authorities to perform a duty this day. It had been my wish, and I expressed it from the sincerity of my heart, that some person more competent-some gentleman whose habits and education better fitted him for this melancholy duty—some man of real eloquence, should be requested to perform the duty upon this solemn occasion.I was overruled—the importunity of friends prevailed, and the honor devolved on me—more from my having been a cotemporary of those illustrious men, whose deaths we mourn and whose acts we meet to commemorate, than from any oth
Fellow Countrymen ! Americans!—Wherefore this great assemblage ? Why this roar of cannon and dismal tolling of the bells ? Why these badges of mourning? Are all these intended to commemorate the death of some Hero, as the ancient Romans did, who by his great victories had slain thousands and tens of thousands of his fellow men—had deluged the earth with blood—had spread desolation all aroundhad caused whole armies to pass under the yoke—and had reduced millions to slavery ? No! we meet to mourn the death of two illustrious citizens--the Fathers of their country, and benefactors of mankind-men whose virtuous acts and noble deeds are deeply impressed upon the heart of every true American.
Fellow Countrymen! - Jefferson and Adams are no more! Holy Patriarchs of the Revolution ! Conscript Fathers of the Republic ! You are gone! You have fought the good fight, and have winged your flight from this field of your fame to the regions of eternal bliss, to receive your reward in Heaven! Twin sons of Liberty! Mighty Spirits ! You have accomplished the task which was allotted to you—and if it be permitted to departed spirits to look back upon this worldseated on the left hand of the father of his country, you enjoy the outpourings of a nation's gratitude ! What a spectacle ! A mighty nation—a whole People, moving in solemn procession to the funeral of their sons-gathering as one family around their graves, raising with one voice the loud anthem to their praise-and joining with one heart in offering up a fervent prayer to the Almighty! The mighty spirit of party is laid! All the fierce passions of our nature are rebuked—and every other feeling is hushed into the deep, still sentiment of gratitude:
But do we mourn as those without comfort ? As men de. prived of all consolation ? No, we ought rather and we do give praise and thanksgivings to that All-powerful Being who superintends and directs the destinies of men and of nations, for having spared them to us so long—for having endowed them with talents, with virtue, with eloquence, and all the high qualifications essential to the attainment of the great objectthe Freedom and Independence of this great and glorious nation. For having inspired them with that love of country which burnt bright even in the last moments of their lives; and above all for that political firmness, which knew no change and feared no danger.
Fellow Countrymen !—It may be proper before I proceed to the consideration of the virtues and acts of these conspicuous men, to take a rapid view of the origin and progress of our beloved country, and the causes which led to its separation from the parent country. Parent, did I say? Yes, but to us, her conduct was that of a cruel step-mother--trammelling
our commerce-laying odious burthens upon our traderestraining our intercourse with the world—and fixing every badge of slavery upon us. Yes, we were to be bewers of wood and drawers of water, for her more favored sons.-But to proceed--Let us look back and see how, from a little handful of adventurous spirits, who overburthened and persecuted at home, sought refuge and an asylum in this Western World-in America-destined to become the future abode of liberty—“ the land of the free and the home of the brave," we have sprung into a large and powerful nation. A little more than two centuries ago the first settlement was made in this country !
In the year 1607 the first permanent settlement was made at Jamestown, in Virginia. The second was made by the Pilgrims at Plymouth, in 1620.
The difficulties which the Virginians had to encounter, were many and great. An unhealthy situation, and surrounded by numerous tribes of Indians, under a great. Sachem, whose actual powers extending from the shores of the Atlantic to the banks of the Potomac, was bounded only by the mountains-and whose influence reached even to the waters of the Susquehanna. This mighty chief, who was friendly at first, soon became jealous and hostile when he found that the white man had come to settle permanently among them.Pestilence and war made sad havoc among them, and the remaining few, inexperienced and not the best calculated for set. tling and cultivating a new country, made but slow progress. Not so, their brothers, the Pilgrims—these were a people of a different character. They had been the hardy cultivators of the soil in their own country—they had been inured to adversity—they had been persecuted and driven from their homes by the hard hand of political tyranny—and what they estimated (if possible) as still more grievous, by the spirit of religious intolerance. They too, were more fortunate in their situation, and more happy in their connexions. They were received with kindness by the natives, and formed a