Show a Little of the Spirit of John Hancock in ’76

"Whatsoever Things Are True - Whatsoever Things Are Honest - Whatsoever Things Are Just - Whatsoever Things Are Pure - Whatsoever Things Are Of Good Report." -- St. Paul.

The Ohio State Journal talks somewhat like giving up. Not so fast, Mr. Journal. —

What, give up the principles of the Whig cause? Abandon all the country, and all the dearest hopes we have cherished of the purity, excellence and glory of our noble institutions, to the dishonest and corrupt faction who have gained a temporary ascendancy?

Did our father ever despair? Can you read in all their toils, their sufferings, their dark and most cheerless hours, one single design to abandon their struggle?

Did Washington, with the feeble and suffering army of a few poor, ragged and bleeding soldiers, give up his hopes and prospects, even while Burgoyne with his proud, disciplined, and victorious army of mercenary troops was sweeping like a torrent everything before him?

In the darkest page of the American Revolution, there was no faltering. Our fathers knew that the Whig cause would triumph in spite of power, — and just so certain as the revolution happily succeeded, shall the Whig cause now succeed. —

Toryism, corruption, power, patronage, wealth, cannot all crush the principles of the Whigs. They are founded on the rock of eternal truth, and will triumph.

What, man — never despair. We shall be conquerors yet.

In Old Huron, local matters, falsehood, defamation, and inactivity of the Whigs, have all conspired to their temporary defeat. But they have the strength of the people, and depend upon it, they will not suffer that strength to lie idle another year.

We have a glorious cause, and though our band is diminishing, let us join together — die it may be, but never surrender.

Huron Reflector (Norwalk, Ohio) Oct 15, 1839

Image from: Winter Soldiers – Arming Americans With Knowledge (great website)

From the New York Whig.

Wholesome Thoughts.

We have heard a variety of reasons offered for the falling off of the Whig strength in Vermont. One says it is because CLAY is unpopular. Another says it is because SCOTT is talked of, instead of CLAY. A third takes snuff at both reasons, and insists that it is because the friends of the other candidates are trying to choke off the gallant HARRISON. Now what does this amount to? Why, the friend of Van Buren stands by, listening to all this folly, and says, gentlemen, you are all right — it is because your candidates are all unpopular.

Such is the inevitable consequence of all this talking about a preference of candidates. The enemy overhears our discussions about a chief. He puffs and blows over the embers of our disunion. If he can kindle a spark that burns for CLAY, or HARRISON, or SCOTT — he counts upon our overthrow. And when we talk of this man, or that man, he laughs in his sleeve to see a party so sound in its elements, and really so strong, so easily blown about by dissensions as to candidates. From the very first, Van Buren has built his hopes of success upon our want of union. — He knows very well how certain would have been his defeat in 1836, had the opposition been united against him. He fears our union now, more than any thing else.

The beast and only reason we think worth naming, for our loss in Vermont, is want of votes. It is said there were some thousands who staid at home. They are not true Whigs, then, and are just such troops as would run the wrong way at the opening of the battle. Count not upon such men. He is no true Whig who is absent from the polls, in the present posture of our national affairs. Voting is the only remedy we have to put down the corrupt oligarchy at Washington — and if the Whigs are remiss in their duty, there is little room for apology — and no possible hope of success.

We ought to regard every Whig, who for any reason short of absence from the State, or actual inability keeps away from the polls, as guilty of an offense against the community. There can be no excuse for such men — and they should be dealt plainly with. Let the press speak out. Let the Whigs, old and young, in every part of the country, who have to bear the brunt of the battle in every contest speak out — and tell these lazy drones to be up and doing. Tell them to work — to put their brawny shoulders to the wheel — and all will be well.

The great trouble with the Whig party, in all our election contests — and sorry we are to say it — is that there are too many who like to sit in their arm chairs, and look out of their windows abroad upon the labors of others. These men are unusually liberal — they mean well — they talk as if the world was as easily moulded as a new made cheese — and they never can blame themselves when the issue is unfavorable, for they said so and so, and if they had been listened to, why the result might have been different. The fact is, THESE MEN MUST WORK, if they would save the country. They must go into the field — they must address themselves to the people, and share with them the heat and burden of the struggle. The moment this is generally done, that moment is the victory won.

Some may think this is plain talk. It is so — and a little more plain talk may yet be necessary. We intend to speak plain. We can tell the Whigs that there is no danger — not from the enemy, so much as from their own indifference and want of zealous co-operation throughout the country. We certainly can conquer, if we will. But newspaper rallying won’t do the work — caucusses of a few hard laboring, earnest politicians, here and there, in this and that county, or city, or ward, will never accomplish the victory. No — we want all to work — we want the merchant from the counting-house, the lawyer from his books, the banker from his desk, and the rich man from his couch — to step forth into the field, and work as others work in the struggle, in the issue of which THEY have infinitely more at stake than we have.

We want them to show a little of the spirit of John Hancock, in ’76.

He was liberal; he gave of his princely revenues to the good cause — but he did more, he gave his EXAMPLE, his personal exertions through the whole of the struggle, among his fellow citizens in the strife for victory.

This is what we want, more than money.

Huron Reflector (Norwalk, Ohio) Oct 15, 1839

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