Secession Era Editorials Project
[TOP] [NEBRASKA] [SUMNER] [DRED SCOTT] [JOHN BROWN'S RAID]












The Caning of Sumner (May 1856)

Indianapolis, Indiana Locomotive [Democratic], (23 May 1856)
Freedom of speech should be guarantied to all public men in debate on public questions
Boston, Massachusetts Atlas [Republican], (23 May 1856)
the mouths of the representatives of the North are to be closed by the use of bowie-knives, bludgeons, and revolvers.
Boston, Massachusetts Bee [American], (23 May 1856)
An outrage so gross and villianous was never before committed within the walls of the Capitol.
Boston, Massachusetts Courier [Whig], (23 May 1856)
The member from South Carolina transgressed every rule of honor which should animate or restrain one gentleman in his connections with another, in his ruffian assault upon Mr. Sumner. There is no chivalry in a brute. There is no manliness in a scoundrel.
Portland, Maine Advertiser [Republican], (23 May 1856)
How long will the people of the Free States tamely submit to such outrages?
Detroit, Michigan Free Press [Democratic], (23 May 1856)
It was an atrocious speech. But its atrocity did not warrant the personal assault upon him by a South Carolina member of the House of Representatives.
Albany, New York Evening Journal [Republican], (23 May 1856)
For the first time has the extreme discipline of the Plantation been introduced into the Senate of the United States.
New York Times [Republican], (23 May 1856)
The most fastidious reader will search in vain for anything which could give the slightest color of just provocation for the brutal outrage of Brooks.
New York Tribune [Republican], (23 May 1856)
No meaner exhibition of Southern cowardice -- generally miscalled Southern chivalry -- was ever witnessed.
Cincinnati, Ohio Daily Enquirer [Democratic], (23 May 1856)
Superficial and malevolent writers are attempting to magnify Sumner into a martyr for freedom and a victim of slavery.
Louisville, Kentucky Journal [American], (24 May 1856)
A pitched battle has long been raging between the champions of those two States, and generally the harshest and most offensive language has come from the South Carolinians
Boston, Massachusetts Atlas [Republican], (24 May 1856)
never before has the sanctity of the Senate Chamber been violated
Boston, Massachusetts Post [Democratic], (24 May 1856)
The free soil politicians are prompt in their endeavors to make party capital out of this affair.
Portland, Maine Advertiser [Republican], (24 May 1856)
We hope, for the credit of humanity, that every man in the Free States, without regard to party, will feel this outrage as a personal indignity, no less than an insult to the Free States.
Albany, New York Evening Journal [Republican], (24 May 1856)
Mr. Sumner was writing unsuspectingly and busily at his desk when attacked by Brooks.
Buffalo, New York Morning Express [Republican], (24 May 1856)
The truth is, that slavery, with its southern chivalry and northern doughfaceism, found more than a match in the oratorical powers of Sumner. They had not the ability to cope with him in debate.
New York Tribune [Republican], (24 May 1856)
a more vivid, if not a wholly original perception, of the degradation in which the Free States have consented for years to exist.
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Gazette [Republican], (24 May 1856)
If Southern men will resort to the fist to overawe and intimidate Northern men, blow must be given back for blow. Forbearance and kindly deportment are lost upon these Southern ruffians.
Boston, Massachusetts Atlas [Republican], (24 May 1856)
The Boston Courier did not see fit to join yesterday morning in the unqualified rebuke which the assault upon Mr. Sumner elicited from almost every Boston newspaper.
Albany, New York Evening Journal [Republican], (24 May 1856)
The record of the Revolutionary Struggle shows that South Carolina's Slavery, weakened South Carolina
Springfield, Illinois Illinois State Register [Democratic], (26 May 1856)
Sumner's speech, surpassed in blackguardism anything ever delivered in the senate.
Boston, Massachusetts Courier [Whig], (26 May 1856)
The object of the Atlas is to obtain personal and political capital from the occurrence at Washington
Wilmington, North Carolina Daily Herald [American], (26 May 1856)
he has yet given a good handle for the Northern people to seize, in denunciation of his course, and deprived the South of the opportunity of justification.
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Gazette [Republican], (26 May 1856)
when even Southern papers denounce the attack as atrocious, the Pittsburgh Post, alone among all the papers of the free States, hastes to the defence of Mr. Brooks and justifies his brutal and unmanly assault upon Mr. Sumner.
Cincinnati, Ohio Daily Enquirer [Democratic], (27 May 1856)
gentlemen everywhere will admit that Sumner's general tone was neither parliamentary nor gentlemanly
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Gazette [Republican], (27 May 1856)
The seat of the National government should be where freedom of speech can safely be tolerated
Columbia, South Carolina South Carolinian [Democratic], (27 May 1856)
Meetings of approval and sanction will be held, not only in Mr. Brooks' district, but throughout the State at large, and a general and hearty response of approval will re-echo the words, "Well done," from Washington to the Rio Grande.
Nashville, Tennessee Republican Banner and Nashville Whig [American], (27 May 1856)
His assault upon Mr. S., a member of the Senate, upon the floor of the Senate, was a great outrage upon that body, and cannot be justified or excused.
Louisville, Kentucky Journal [American], (28 May 1856)
It is monstrous that a member of the House of Representatives should beat a Senator upon the floor of the Senate for a speech made in the Senate
Concord, New Hamphire New Hampshire Patriot [Democratic], (28 May 1856)
Sumner's speech was of such a character as to provoke the result which has followed
Charleston, South Carolina Mercury [Democratic], (28 May 1856)
SUMNER was well and elegantly whipped, and he richly deserved it.
Edgefield, South Carolina Advertiser [Democratic], (28 May 1856)
we have borne insult long enough, and now let the conflict come if it must.
Boston, Massachusetts Post [Democratic], (29 May 1856)
personal violence is of akin to that higher-lawism Which has been so long urged by fanaticism.
Portland, Maine Advertiser [Republican], (29 May 1856)
If you would see the sure and unmistakable evidences of MEAN souls, look at the semi-apologies made in some of the Northern administration papers
Charleston, South Carolina Mercury [Democratic], (29 May 56)
Was the like of this ever before published in a newspaper in South Carolina?
Greenville, South Carolina Patriot and Mountaineer [Democratic], (29 May 1856)
he was abusive of Judge BUTLER and Judge DOUGLAS, and denounced all slaveholders as criminals!
Spartanburg, South Carolina Spartan [Democratic], (29 May 1856)
Few in South Carolina will withhold applause from Col. Brooks for his castigation of a man who to a foul tongue adds the crime of perjury.
Yorkville, South Carolina Enquirer [Democratic], (29 May 1856)
If ever a high-minded man can be justified in promptly resenting insult and injury, surely Col. Brooks will receive from the people of his own State, at least, the mead of a most cordial approval.
Charleston, South Carolina Mercury [Democratic], (30 May 1856)
The South certainly has become generally convinced that it is by hard blows, and not by loud blustering and insulting denunciation, that the sectional quarrel is to be settled.
Laurensville, South Carolina Herald [Democratic], (30 May 1859)
we can only give our most hearty indorsement of the conduct of Mr. Brooks
Montpelier, Vermont Patriot and State Gazette [Democratic], (30 May 1856)
The remarks made by Mr. Sumner, which provoked this assault, were malignant and insulting beyond anything ever uttered in coolness upon the floor of the Senate.
Albany, New York Evening Journal [Republican], (31 May 1856)
As there have been political crimes in all ages, so there have been in all ages Doughfaces to defend them.
Richmond, Virginia Whig [American], (31 May 1856)
the Abolition wretch, with his Abolition physicians as accomplices in the trick, is playing possum.
Milledgeville, Georgia Federal Union [Democratic], (3 June 1856)
We believe there are some kinds of slander and abuse, for the perpetration of which, no office or station should protect a man from deserved punishment.
Boston, Massachusetts Atlas [Republican], (3 June 1856)
the Democratic party has kindled its flames; that if fanaticism has taken a new lease of life, that life was breathed into it by Pierce and Douglas and their fellow conspirators
Boston, Massachusetts Post [Democratic], (3 June 1856)
Madness rules the hour, in nullification-ridden Massachusetts.
Portland, Maine Advertiser [Republican], (3 June 1856)
Slavery shows its paternity of the deed by its thorough ratification.
Richmond, Virginia Enquirer [Democratic], (3 June 1856)
A community of Abolitionists could only be governed by a penitentiary system. They are as unfit for liberty as maniacs, criminals, or wild beasts.
Louisville, Kentucky Journal [American], (5 June 1856)
The course of a portion of the Southern press is no less reprehensible in applauding the brutal and deadly assault of Brooks upon the person of a United States Senator upon the floor of the Senate chamber.
Portland, Maine Advertiser [Republican], (4 June 1856)
The fault was not with our citizens, but with those who directly and indirectly lent their countenance to the ruffianly conduct of Brooks.
Nashville, Tennessee Republican Banner and Nashville Whig [American], (4 June 1856)
They speak of Sumner as a martyr to the Freesoil sentiment of the North.
Richmond, Virginia Whig [American], (4 June 1859)
To speak of feeling an insult as a wound would be to them an unintelligible jargon.
Albany, New York Evening Journal [Republican], (5 June 1856)
The assault upon Senator Sumner was a National outrage.
Spartanburg, South Carolina Spartan [Democratic], (5 June 1856)
Intense excitement continues at the North, and the negro worshippers are forging capital from the original occurrence.
Albany, New York Evening Journal [Republican], (5 June 1856)
they take upon themselves the unnecessary odium of being the opponents of Freedom of Debate.
Portland, Maine Advertiser [Republican], (6 June 1856)
the manner in which the deed has been defended in Congress and its perpetrator so shamefully applauded by the Southern press, has strengthened and prolonged the indignant response of our people.
Raleigh, North Carolina Register [American], (6 June 1856)
in censuring the attack, let not the cause be forgotten
Charleston, South Carolina Mercury [Democratic], (6 June 56)
We copy below the letter of Mr. BROOKS, addressed to the President of the Senate
Laurensville, South Carolina Herald [Democratic], (6 June 1859)
The first blow has been struck, which will be felt keener and longer than all the arguments and warnings ever used in Congress by Southern members
Nashville, Tennessee Republican Banner [American], (6 June 1856)
We copy the following from the Charleston Mercury:
Richmond, Virginia Whig [American], (7 June 1859)
A member of Congress may say what he pleases in his place; but if he publishes his speech, he becomes amenable to the law of libel or the cudgel
Charleston, South Carolina Mercury [Democratic], (9 June 56)
Precedent is the mask which tyranny wears when it strikes its deadliest blows.
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Gazette [Republican], (11 June 1856)
the club is to be the substitute for debate
Montpelier, Vermont Patriot and State Gazette [Democratic], (13 June 1856)
no portion of our people seem to be so much pleased with the Sumner row and the Kansas troubles as our fusion abolitionists
Spartanburg, South Carolina Spartan [Democratic], (24 July 1856)
These gallant gentlemen have done nothing justifying the action of the House, and their constituents will send them back strengthened to battle with the hosts of Black Republicanism