The National Crisis
1863 — Gubernatorial campaign, coal and mining towns, Pennsylvania
Who will draw the diving line? How shall we divide the Mississippi, our forts, navy, dock-yards? Some of the Border States already accept the President’s plan of emancipation. Are you ready to give them up? Are you ready to yield up the grave of Washington to Jeff Davis and his crew?
The people of the South claim to be the most aristocratic people in the world. They call you, laboring men, the “mudsills of society,” “greasy mechanics,” small-fisted farmers,” “filthy operatives,” and the like.
Across the water the operatives of Lancashire and Manchester are sending their “God speed the right!” to the North, the autocrats of Europe are on the side of the South.
The fact that slavery and free institutions cannot go hand in hand together has been abundantly proved in Kansas. There the homes of free men were burned over their heads, their school destroyed, and their teachers hung.
You have nothing to gain, laboring men, by voting for slavery. Give the slaves their liberty in the South, and they will stay there. Refuse it, and they will come to the North, and slave labor will be in competition with your own. Which do you prefer?
Source: Hartford Courant, April 6, 1863.