The Cloud in the Distance No Bigger
then a Man's Hand" - The First Battle
of the "Irrepressible Conflict."
Cincinnati, Ohio, Enquirer [Democratic]
(19 October 1859)
We give full particulars to-day of the late
extraordinary proceedings at Harper's Ferry,
Va. They will attract general attention, and
create great sensation in all parts of the Union.
It will be seen that more detailed and authentic
accounts sustain entirely the view we yesterday
took in commenting upon it. It was an Abolition
plot to free the negroes of Maryland and
Virginia at the point of the bayonet. The
leader of it was so-called "Ossawatomie Brown,"
one of the abolitionists who figured with LANE
and MONTGOMERY in the murderous forays in
Kansas. Men may well be surprised at the
reckless boldness and daring of this operation:
He must have taken courage from the late elections
in Ohio and Pennsylvania, and supposed
that he would have not only the moral, but the
physical backing of these two great states in
stirring up a servile war in the two states of
Maryland and Virginia.
The "irrepressible conflict" of the free and
slave states, which is preached by the Republican
leaders as an orthodox doctrine, is well
calculated to lead to such results. This affair
at Harper's Ferry is but the "cloud in the distance
no bigger than a man's hand," but it is
the presage of the future storm, that shall desolate
the whole land, if the people give this Abolition
doctrine their approval. It necessarily
tends to servile insurrection, civil war and disunion.
BROWN and his followers are but the
advance column of the partisan disciples of
SEWARD and CHASE, who are burning to make
a practical application of the "irrepressible con-
flict doctrine. They stand ready to deluge the
land in blood to carry out their fanatical views ;
and the momentous question is, do the majority
of the people of the free states sympathize
The danger of having a Republican-Abolition
President can now be readily appreciated. Such
a President, having his sympathies with the
insurrectionists, would be slow to move in
arresting their outrages. Delay, indecision
and coldness would encourage the very parties
against whom he should exert promptly the
physical and moral power of the government.
And the very fact that there was a President
with such sympathies would encourage insurrection
all through the slave states. It is for
the people, North and South, to say if those
things shall be.
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