« ПретходнаНастави »
friends must not allow themselves to divide upon questions respecting men, so as to defeat or endanger all their own dearest objects.
What we now do, we cannot undo. We do it once, and we do it for our generation, perhaps for ever. And so much of all our highest interests, our truest prosperity, and our best hopes depends on having this work well done, that I say once more, — I say it from the very bottom of my heart, — I say it with the most profound conviction of its importance, — brethren of the same principles must not be allowed to differ with regard to Inen.
CONWENTION AT WALLEY FORGE.”
Two days after the foregoing speech was delivered at Philadelphia, Mr. Webster was invited to address a general convention of the Whigs of Chester and Montgomery Counties. The place appointed for the meeting was Valley Forge, a spot for ever famous in the annals of the Revolution, and still preserving the most interesting memorials of the dreadful winter of 1777–78. The information that Mr. Webster was expected to address the meeting had circulated widely throughout the neighboring townships, few of whose inhabitants had ever had an opportunity of hearing him. They accordingly assembled in great numbers, and of both sexes. The village was filled, at an early hour, by the multitude, which poured in from every quarter. Processions were formed, with banners, wreaths, and emblems appropriate to the Revolutionary associations of the place, and significant of the principles and feelings which belonged to the present occasion. A strong mounted escort was in attendance at the railway station ; and at nine o'clock, A. M., the train arrived from Philadelphia, with Mr. Webster and a large number of political friends from that city.
After a short time passed in a survey of the interesting localities of the spot, especially the house in which General Washington's quarters were established during the winter of 1777–78, the convention was organized by the appointment of Hon. Jonathan Roberts as President. After a forcible address from the chair, on the general objects of the meeting, Mr. Webster was introduced to the company, and delivered the following speech.
LAdies AND GENTLEMEN, - There is a mighty power in local association. All acknowledge it, and all feel it! Those places naturally inspire us with emotion, which, in the course of human history, have been connected with great and interesting events;
* * Speech delivered at a great Convention of the Whigs of Chester and Montgomery Counties, in Pennsylvania, at Valley Forge, on the 3d of October, 1844.
WOL. II. 24