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Opposing Political Newspapers in Portland, Day by Day

Eastern Argus

The Leading Democrat Newspaper

Portland Advertiser

The Leading Republican Newspaper

Saturday December 1,1860

ARGUS (2/1) THE STATE OF FEELING AT THE SOUTH – We have been favored with the perusal of a private letter from Charleston, S.C., received yesterday, by one of our citizens. The writer is one of the most respected citizens of Charleston and a man entitled to the most implicit confidence. A Northerner by birth, he has for many years been a citizen of South Carolina, and has there been honored by offices of high trust We present some extracts from his letter which will give our readers an idea of the feeling which pervades that city : “ The mere loss of an election would not have moved the South so generally if the great majorities of Lincoln did not imply a radical unsoundness of the public mind on the subject of SLAVERY…If the general government attempts coercion, and it should lead to bloodshed, the whole South would be instantly united…By the 1st of January next we shall be out of the Union no matter what may be the consequences.”

Saturday December 1, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/2) KANSAS.--The late “troubles in Kansas “seem, after all, to have amounted to little or nothing. The whole affair seems to have been very greatly exaggerated in the telegraphic reports, and we would warn our readers hereafter to wait for definite information and full particulars before believing reports concerning Kansas affairs.

(2/2) EMIGRATION TO HAYTI-- / Important to Persons of the Black and Red Races.
The Haytian government is particularly anxious to encourage this emigration… for the sake of civilization they shall bring into the island….We understand that arrangements for the embarkation here and the reception in Hayti of 100,000 persons, can be made immediately and that the first vessel to be sent out under the auspices of the Bureau of Emigration, will leave Boston on the 22nd instant, and that a large number have already engaged passage.
We hail then this movement as highly auspicious of good to the African race, as it seems to be a feasible, practical and tangible scheme ( instituted by themselves ) for the elevation in social position at least, by the powerful agency of productive industry and commerce of this long depressed race.

Sunday December 2,1860 – No Edition Printed

Sunday December 2, 1860—No Edition Printed

Monday December 3,1860

ARGUS (2/3) MR.EVERETT’S LECTURE – The third lecture of the Mercantile Library course will be delivered in City Hall this evening, by Hon. Edward Everett. Subject, the Life and Character of Franklin. This will be a lecture well worth listening to, and we advise those who have not season tickets to secure an evening ticket this morning, as a limited number only will be offered for sale.

(2/2) THE OPENING OF CONGRESS—To-day begins the Second Session of the Thirty-sixth Congress of the United States. Preliminary to any action by Congress however will come the message of President Buchanan. Upon him falls the duty of defining the position of the Federal Government on the question of the right of secession…With all his faults, and through all his errors, Mr.Buchanan has never lost his standing as a firm friend of the Union; (and) his message shall do honor to his heart, and give hope to the country.

Monday December 3, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/3) It is hardly necessary for us to give more than a brief allusion to what all our readers doubtless know, that Edward Everett is to-night to lecture on Benjamin Franklin. The simple announcement of the orator and the subject “will draw “ more than any words that we can say. We learn that Mr.Everett’s engagements were such that he could not leave until the noon train.

(2/5) REPUBLICAN CLUB -- At the meeting of this Club, held Saturday last, it was unanimously voted to hire the Club room and keep the same open during the winter. A committee was appointed for this purpose, and instructed to “ run the machine “ day and evening, that the Republicans of the city and others visiting us may have this room as head quarters, until Mr. Lincoln presides over the White House, and Mr. Hamlin over the Senate.

Tuesday December 4,1860

ARGUS (2/2) MR LINCOLN’S VOTE AT HOME – The Republicans laid great stress upon the fact that Lincoln had a majority of the votes in his own town of Springfield. It now appears from the official vote of the place that while Mr. Douglas ran ahead of his ticket in Springfield, Mr. Lincoln ran behind the Republican ticket, and received the lowest vote cast on that ballot.

(2/6) MR.EVERETT’S LECTURE -- A larger audience than at either of the preceeding lectures gathered last evening to listen to Hon.Edward Everett upon the “Life and Character of Franklin.” The hall was stowed as full as could be with settees which were all occupied, and every part of the standing space had its occupant, while the seats of the windows were filled by gentlemen. It was one of Mr.Everett’s happiest efforts, and was warmly received by the vast audience.

Tuesday December 4, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/3) WASHINGTON AND PORTLAND -- Last evening Washington and Portland were in telegraphic communication for the first time. The operator in Washington notifies Portland that he visited the Senate Chamber, upon the assembling of Congress, where “Abolitionists and Fire-Eaters were cheek by jowl, shaking hands and indulging in congratulations generally.” Washington surmises that before many days pass, these same delighted Senators will be indulging in wordy tilts that may jostle the Union to its centre.

(2/3) EDWARD EVERETT’S LECTURE-- The third lecture of the Mercantile Library’s course was given last night by Mr.Everett, and his subject, as announced, was the early life of Benjamin Franklin. The hall was packed with the largest audience that has been present at either of the lectures this year , and it was rather too large, we thought, for comfort – the aisles being filled with camp stools and chairs…The attitude of the orator is dignified, commanding, and graceful, but we think he entirely fails to captivate and interest and audience as does Beecher or Phillips…Mr.Everett is much better fitted to command the attention of the grave and learned gentlemen composing the U.S. Senate, than he is to edify and delight so vast and mixed an audience as assembled at the Hall last evening. For a popular course of lectures, a theme and a man that will touch the heart as well as the head, is what is absolutely required…

Wednesday December 5,1860

ARGUS (2/1) There was a “Union” incident at the St.Louis theatre the other night, which brought down the house unanimously. Mrs. Florence had sung and danced in a sailor’s costume holding the star-spangled banner, which she tossed to Mr. Florence, at the other end of the stage. He took it, spread it out carefully, counted its thirty-three stars aloud, and exclaimed with deep feeling, “ Thank God, they are all there!” The house rose as one man, and the enthusiasm lasted several minutes.

(2/4) To-day the Electors of the several States meet at their respective capitals to cast their votes for President and Vice President of the United States.

Wednesday December 5, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/1) REPUBLICAN JUBILEE -- We would remind our readers of the Jubilee tonight, at the new City Hall. As the only demonstration the Republicans of our city have undertaken since the election of Lincoln and Hamlin, we think they should turn out in good numbers. There will be speeches from several gentlemen, and the ladies are expected to show by their presence that their sympathies are ever upon the side of freedom and humanity.

(2/2) OLD SCARBOROUGH AGAIN— The indomitable Republicans of Scarboro’ had a grand gathering and celebration on Monday evening last, at Dunstan corner. Much credit is due the Republicans of S. for the manner in which they have carried on the campaign, from the very beginning…The Wide-Awakes of Scarboro’ –who from the beginning to the wind-up of the election have been truly WIDE AWAKE, vigilant, active, ever on hand, have done wonders, and deserve the highest praise. Under such an organization and such men, it cannot be long before “Old Scarboro “will rise up under the broad banner of Republicanism. We wish them great success, and the quicker they effect the darling wish of their heart, the sooner will all true men rejoice.

Thursday December 6,1860

ARGUS (3/1) PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE -- …”African Slave Trade. Etc” : It is with great satisfaction that I communicate the fact that, since the date of my last annual message, not a single slave has been imported into the United States in violation of the laws prohibiting the African slave trade. This statement is founded upon a thorough examination and investigation of the subject. Indeed, the spirit which prevailed some time since among a portion of our fellow citizens in favor of this trade seems to have entirely subsided…--JAMES BUCHANAN, Washington City

(3/2) THE CANADA FUGITIVE SLAVE MURDER CASE—At Toronto, the decision in the extradition case of the fugitive slave and murderer Jones, has been further postponed for a few days. The court on Friday was crowded and much interest manifested in the proceedings. Many colored people of both sexes assembled in and around the Court House ready to rescue the prisoner in case the court decided to hand him over to the United States authorities.

Thursday December 6, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/7) THE PRESIDENTS MESSAGE – We are disappointed in the message; it is not what the country had a right to expect; the first, and what should be the most important and decided portion, is weak, almost puerile in is statements and reasoning ; the impending crisis is by no means met face to face ; on the contrary, the president wanders about like a blind man , feeling for something which may serve as an excuse …arrayed in the old fashioned stump speakers style, as excuses for the treason of South Carolina, while no word of rebuke is found for those men who have wickedly and maliciously stirred up the people to civil strife…So far from calming the Southern mind, this portion of the message will but add fuel to the flame.

Friday December 7,1860

ARGUS (2/1) THE PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE – The purpose of the President seems to be in all respects commendable, and while he lacks the boldness and decision firmly to propose and execute a policy to relieve the country from its distress (he) maintains the fellowship of good feeling between North and South. That Mr.Buchanan loves his country is beyond doubt; but it is the love of an indulgent parent which yields its authority upon the slightest symptom of an outbreak.

(2/3) ELECTORAL VOTE OF MAINE – The electoral vote of Maine was on Wednesday thrown for Lincoln and Hamlin, and L.O.Cowan,Esq. was appointed to convey the vote of the State to Washington.

(2/1) AN EDITORIAL SLEIGHRIDE – Yesterday afternoon the press took an outing. Very considerate it was of Mr.George H.Babcock to send his noble pair of grays and handsome sleigh as a provocative to acceptance of a kind invitation to make one in an editorial sleighride. Very considerate indeed we thought as ensconced under comfortable robes we watched the twinkling feet of the grays as they spurned the snow before us.
The Advertiser on the back seat discussed pleasantly of the early history of Portland; the Courier by his side ventured an occasional witticism while the Argus, an interested listener, rubbed his chilled fingers and admired the skill of the driver. Altogether it was a most agreeable ride; horses incomparable, sleigh luxurious, company agreeable, and—only snow was scarce.
It was an editorial party, and of course dignified. Gaily we sped through the city, out upon the Western Avenue, back again by another route where houses were fewer and sleighing was better; and round and round, here and there, till we thought people might take us for resurrected Peter Ruggs

Friday December 7,1860

ADVERTISER (2/2) THE CHARCOAL GRAYS —Mr. George H. Babcock, yesterday, very kindly tendered his beautiful span of stone grays ( of the charcoal expedition ) with a double sleigh to the Press, and about four o’clock PM, the Argus, the Courier, and the
Advertiser, had their first sleigh ride for the winter through our city. Although there is not quite snow enough in all our streets to make good sleighing, yet this noble pair of “ six year olds “ took all four of us over the grounds at a winter pace. We enjoyed a glorious winter sunset on the Western Promenade, and found Old Sol sinking to rest behind the hills of Agamenticus, instead of the White Mountain range, as in summer; and the deep crimson tinge of the clouds reflected from the creek near the Reform School, contrasted most beautifully with the snow covered banks of the stream and perennial foliage of our Maine trees. The Press voted unanimously that it would require but little “ pressing “ to induce them to have a second edition of the ride with that span.

Saturday December 8,1860

ARGUS (2/1) TELEGRAPHIC EXPERIMENTS—Last night the cities of Wilmington, N.C., and Charleston, S.C., were bought into close connection with this city by the magnetic line. Conversation was carried on between Mr.Upham, the operator in the Portland office, and the operators in Wilmington and Charleston. The latter then connected the New Orleans wire, and the operator in that office called “Portland” and had some conversation with the operator here. New Orleans to an enquiry of Portland as to the time, replied 8:55. It was 10:20 here.

Saturday December 8, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/4) The atmosphere last night being favorable for telegraphic communications, the operators put Portland in connection with Charleston, S.C., and transmitted messages distinctly; subsequently, Bangor and New Orleans were connected for the first time and messages went from Maine to Louisiana. We believe this is a longer distance than was ever before connected in the United States , or on any land telegraphic line over which intelligible despatches have been sent.
(2/4) Mr. Hamlin will tender his resignation as Senator, to take effect on the 1st of February, with a retiring speech, which will, it is thought, reflect somewhat the policy of the incoming administration.

Sunday December 9,1860 – No Edition Printed
Sunday December 9, 1860 – No Edition Printed

Monday December 10, 1860

ARGUS (2/1) THE GREAT QUESTION! – What of the Union? Will it outride the storm? Or will it be shattered into fragments by its fury? That is the great question of the hour. Before it all others sink to insignificance…The prospect has spread a mantle of gloom over all the land. Distrust has taken the place of confidence, trade is paralyzed , industry languishes, and hard-earned fortunes crumble in a day. And yet this is but the beginning. What is to be the end? God only knows. Human kind cannot penetrate the veil that hides the future.

Monday December 10, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/1) SLAVE TRADE.-- Recent English papers publish the following statements from the West African Herald, and endorse them :
It is unquestionable that the slave trade is in a more flourishing condition than it has known for many years, and its constant increase must soon arouse the opponents of the traffic to more energetic action. It is shameful for us to be obliged to confess that a larger portion of the vessels,engaged in these piratical enterprises, are owned and fitted out in the ports of the United States…the American brig Lauretta shipped from Wydah, on the 28th day September, six hundred slaves, and got clean away, and a few days later the American barque Buckeye shipped an immense number of slaves on board and got clear away.
The Buckeye was formerly owned in Salem, Mass., but had recently been sold to a New York house.

(2/1) … In the Fremont (National Republican) Convention of 1856, Mr. (James G.) Blaine was one of the delegates from this state, and was, if we mistake not, the only one from New England that voted for Abraham Lincoln’s nomination for the Vice Presidency. Mr. Lincoln received 110 votes for the nomination, standing next to Mr.Dayton on the first ballot.

Tuesday December 11,1860

ARGUS (2/2) THE JAWS OF THE WOLF – And is it so? It is even so. What many have long and often predicted, in their hearts, believing it –what any have predicted, only half believing it, but hoping to gain help toward a petty political triumph—what many have inwardly feared—what a few (headlong, cut-throat abolitionists) have long aimed at and prayed for –and what not a few now receive in sullen despair as inevitable – this, disguise it as we cannot, is at last upon us…Many of us known as Democrats, as Whigs, as Union-men, as Conservatives, have hitherto resisted as we could this calamity in our opposition to the Black Republican party…Shall we, the sons of Maine, begin already to calculate what MAINE shall suffer or what MAINE shall gain, and so, without one more effort, consent to accept this Hell-devised, Hell-helped, Hell-rejoicing calamity?

Tuesday December 11, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/2) TREASON DENOUNCED! -- We are not so blind as not to perceive that black, murky, threatening clouds are gathering thick and fast upon our political horizon; that they will disperse without a storm we can hardly hope, but that the storm will drive the ship of state upon the rocks of destruction we do not believe. That ship is freighted with great hopes. Can any man, without an extra heart throb, say those hopes are to be utterly blasted? The God of nations seemed to have chosen America to be the ark of safety for the oppressed of all lands, and can we not have faith to believe that she will still ride upon the water and bid defiance to the storm?

Wednesday December 12,1860

ARGUS (2/1) A GLANCE AT THE FUTURE—It will often occur that a State can stand alone better than in association with a few neighbors.
Such would be the condition of Maine with reference to the rest of New England.
She would be far better alone than as a member of New England confederacy. She is not largely engaged in the manufacture of cotton…but her coasting trade would of course be damaged by dissolution of the Union—perhaps destroyed. Her ships could not compete for foreign freights with those of powerful nations. Without a navy and unable to support one, Maine merchants would see their ships a prey to every free booter. But in the construction of vessels she could with iron and cordage free of duty, still compete with the world. Her position is favorable for trade with the British Provinces, and with her ports free…To be tied to a New England confederacy with tariff and other legislation to suit the interests of the other States would be ruin. She would be the poor tail to a very small kite. Alone, however, protected by the rigor of her climate, the sterility of her soil and the bravery of her people from being the prey of free booters, she might like Switzerland in modern Europe maintain a noble independence and secure some degree of prosperity…

Wednesday December 12, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/1) THE REIGN OF TERROR.-- As a foretaste of what may be expected by the people of South Carolina, should that state succeed in leaving the Union, they are already obliged to submit to the most galling and despotic regulations…In revolutionary times, bad men are very likely to gain the ascendancy … a popular storm may be raised with comparative ease, but it is the work of God to limit its power or control its direction; it is very apt to sweep away all restraints in its course, bearing with it soldiers, legislators, judges, and governors.
These things are happening in AMERICA, not Austria, in our own land, the home of the FREE. Could such things have been believed of us only ten years ago, and shall such things continue to be a shame?
This is what has been done for he South by those men whom she has elevated to office and power, by her Yanceys and Rhetts and Toombses ; it should be the prayer of every patriot that their day may soon close in utter and eternal night. Their rule is tyranny, and can only exist with the chaining of the people.

Thursday December 13,1860

ARGUS (2/3) -- Recaptured Africans sent by the government to Liberia, are maintained at its expense for twelve months and then set loose, half civilized , half savage, and less capable of self-support than if all savage. The government of Liberia, in a spirit of humanity, then binds them out for seven years to fit them for citizenship.

Thursday December 13, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/5) Charleston dates of the 9th says: There is great activity at Fort Moultrie. The defense every day is rendered stronger. The wives of the officers and men have packed up their effects, ready to quit at a moment’s notice.

Friday December 14,1860

ARGUS (2/3) MERCHANTILE LIBRARY LECTURE—Carl Shurz lectures this evening. There will be no evening tickets sold until 1-4 past 7 o’ clock in order that those holding season tickets may be comfortably seated. The price of evening tickets is fixed at 50 cents.
By George F. Morris

 Oh keep that flag flying!—The pride of the van!
To all other nations display it,
The ladies for union are all to a – MAN!
But not to the man who’d betray it.
Then the union of lakes – the union of lands –
The union of states none can sever—
The union of hearts – the union of hands—
And the Flag of the Union forever
And ever!
The Flag of our Union forever!

Friday December 14, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/3) It is we suppose, hardly necessary for us to remind our citizens that the eloquent orator and patriotic son of “Faderland “, Carl Schurz , is to lecture ton-night before the Mercantile Library Association, at the new City Hall. Exiled for his love of liberty, the subject of his lecture, to wit: France Since 1848, will probably be from the stand point of the European liberals, making it both interesting and novel to us.

(2/1) REMEDY FOR DISUNION –When any attempt is made to offer a specific for the diseases of the body politic, we are predisposed to treat the physician and the remedy with consideration and respect; but we have a right to demand that the man who undertakes the cure, shall bring skill or reputation to the work, and that his plan shall assume substance and definite form…When the Northern interpretation of the Constitution is acceded to by the South, then we may hope for permanent peace.
In the meantime, short and hollow truces may be arranged, which will have the affect of postponing the final settlement, but that settlement MUST come in the end, and we have perfect faith that freedom will finally triumph and rule the destinies of a great and united American nation.

Saturday December 15,1860

ARGUS (2/2) A QUESTION FOR THE PEOPLE OF MAINE TO CONSIDER—Our Legislature will soon meet, and what will be done to avert the dangers now impending over us as a people ? Have we as a State contributed by our legislation to the alienation and bitterness of feeling that now threaten to sever the Union?
We have passed acts nullifying the fugitive slave law by making it highly penal for any officer of the State to aid in the arrest of a person claimed as a slave. And also to free a slave voluntarily brought into this State by his master…These laws are antagonistic and hostile in themselves to the Southern States, and while they remain, place the State in antagonism and hostility to the people of the slave States… Are they at this moment reliable evidence of the actual feeling of the citizens of Maine toward the citizens of the slave states ?
But the question is, How is public opinion to be made effective on the Legislature?
Will the Governor-elect take patriotic and conservative ground, and recommend in his message the repeal of laws which place us in legislative antagonism to one-half of the Union? Will not patriotism bring us all together as loyal supporters of the Constitution and the Union, sinking party for our country? -- A CONSERVATIVE

Saturday December 15, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/3) The principal object of the poor and moderately wealthy people of the South, in going for Disunion so rampantly, is to get negroes at low prices by direct importation. If they keep up their clamor much longer, they can buy the home grown at their own prices, without dissolving the Union. A choice Negro was sold at auction in Maryland the other day for $850; whereas a month ago, he would have brought $1500.
(2/4) CARL SCHURZ’S LECTURE – Notwithstanding the cold weather, the hall was well packed last nigh to hear the distinguished orator, whose subject , as has been announced, was “France since 1848 .“ …We fear the general feeling was one of disappointment – not but that the lecture was good, but we know the audience there assembled expected something more soul stirring and eloquent than the dry historical reminiscences which were given, however just and discriminating they may have been—we regret that he had not selected some other topic better adapted to his peculiar gifts as an orator , and more acceptable to an audience of old and young, male and female, such as greets one in a New England lecture room.

Sunday December 16,1860 – No Edition Printed

Sunday December 16, 1860-- No Edition Printed

Monday December 17,1860

ARGUS (2/2) UNPLEASANT PICTURES—The present disturbed state of things has anxieties that go deeper than the pocket or general considerations of public weal, as witness the following :
“ What The Slaves Think of the Present Difficulties “ – A lady residing in Maryland, writing to friends in this city alludes to the feeling among the slaves there. A slave woman belonging to a neighbor has been in the habit of doing her weekly washing, but recently has been careless in her work. The writer remonstrated with the woman, who replied – “You ought to be satisfied with the work, for next Spring, when Lincoln is President, you may have to wash for me! “ The letter says that the people are constantly in dread of an outbreak of the slave population.
(2/5) PERSONAL – Wendell Phillips to-day, after delivering a discourse on Mobs and Education in Music Hall, Boston, was escorted to his residence in Essex Street by three or four hundred of his personal friends, aided by a strong police force, an immense mob following with yells and hootings.

Monday December 17, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/1) INSANITY IN NEW ORLEANS – A gentleman of Chicago, direct from New Orleans , tells us that we of the North can form no adequate idea of the blind, unreasoning passion and insensate fury by which the people of that city and the extreme South are animated. They are for instant and unconditional dissolution of the Union, at any price, and at all hazards – they want no Compromises, no concession, no bargains, no amendments to the Constitution. They are for a Southern Confederacy – nothing less….when men of the North talk about conciliating such ruffians by Compromise, they are fooling their time away. They mean revolution.

Tuesday December 18,1860

ARGUS (2/4) WENDELL PHILLIPS ON NEAL DOW – In the “sermon” of Wendell Phillips, at Music Hall , Boston, on Sunday, he thus alluded to Neal Dow, Esq :
“ I have known three cases of magistrates quelling mobs. One was Neal Dow, in Portland – not necessary, I think – done merely to show his courage. Any man who steps one step out of his path to prove his courage is, of course, a coward.”

(2/4) A SLOOP-OF-WAR TO GO TO CHARLESTON – A Washington correspondent says it is understood that while the President declines to re-enforce the garrison at Fort Moultrie, he has ordered the sloop-of-war Brooklyn to be prepared for sea at once, and held ready to proceed to Charleston to aid in the defense of the Government forts, at a moment’s warning. The order has created quite a stir among naval men.

Tuesday December 18, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/1) SOUTH CAROLINA – Yesterday was an important day in the history of the United States, to become memorable as the date of the assembling of the Convention in South Carolina, for the express purpose of declaring that State out of the Union. We have no doubt that the object of the Convention will be accomplished ; that before the week has passed, the Palmetto State will have done all she can do to sever the bonds which untied her to her sisters. .. Is it too late now for the people of America , not the politicians or the leaders, but the people, who still with Patriotic ardor love their country for its own sake, and liberty for her own sake, to stand up in their might and say, both shall be preserved ?
(2/2) U.S. FORTS NEAR CHARLESTON – Forts Moultrie and Sumpter and Castle Pickney, are in a complete state of repair, fully armed and provisioned, and are only in want of men. The garrison at Moultrie numbers at most sixty-five men, well disciplined and brave, ready to be offered up as the first sacrifice on the shrine of secession, which seems to be the fate designed for them by President Buchanan , Commander in-chief…. Should an attack be made by the people of Charleston upon Fort Moultrie and result in the sacrifice of Anderson and his command, the President would be held responsible for every drop of blood shed in the fight.

Wednesday December 19,1860

ARGUS (2/1) THE NUMBER OF PIECES – As the breaking up of the Union seems inevitable, people are beginning to speculate as to the state of affairs after the dissolution. It is evident that if one or two States secede, the remainder cannot go on as heretofore. If the keystone is removed, the arch falls. The general belief is that the country will be divided into two, three, or perhaps four independent nations…Kentucky and South Carolina are no better friends than are the latter State and Maine; and if the cotton States secede, the other Slave-States unwilling to join the movement, and unwilling also to enter a northern non-slaveholding confederacy, will be in a most embarrassing situation …

Wednesday December 19,1860

ADVERTISER (2/1 ) THE GREAT QUESTION -- From all accounts we are receiving from the South, we are forced to believe that the parties which now control public opinion in that section, are determined to force its secession scheme to extremities, and if possible to bring the State into collision with the Federal Government…The difficulties we are about to encounter may be hard to overcome, the dangers which are threatening us may be even greater than they seem, yet difficulties and dangers will be swept away, if truth is with us. Our cause, the cause of the Union and of human liberty, is good, the cause of our enemies, disunion and human slavery, is bad, and a living faith should teach us to stand by truth and justice, which must prevail.

Thursday December 20,1860

ARGUS (2/1) PRACTICAL CONSIDERATIONS – The “ last argument of kings” in the days before the growth of diplomacy to its present proportions, was the sword; but in these “piping times of peace” that weapon has been coined into dollars, and a purse is the ultima ratio – Somewhat on the principle of electricity a man or a nation may be brought to his or its senses, when other remedies utterly fail, by a shock which thrills the pocket nerve. That part of the American anatomy is extremely sensitive, and to it we look with much hope as the instrumentality which may awaken our country to the dangers about it, and stimulate its energies to accomplish an escape…
(2/1) ACTIVITY OF THE SLAVE TRADE – Despatches from the African Squadron, received at the Navy Department, state that the steamer San Jacinto had captured the brig Bonito, with a cargo of seven hundred and fifty slaves. Commander Inman reports great activity on the part of vessels engaged in this inhuman traffic. A large number of suspicious looking vessels are constantly seen hovering about in various localities, evidently watching an opportunity to secure cargoes and escape without detection, but that our little squadron are not only vigilant but active, and it is seldom that they escape.

Thursday December 20,1860

ADVERTISER (2/2) NO WAR – It is announced by telegraph that South Carolina does not intend to take possession of any property of the Federal Government until after the 4th of March, thus giving time to the other southern states to arrange concerted action with her. We hope for continued peace; South Carolina begins to perceive her inability to make her acts correspond to the spirit of her manifestoes. The secession ordinance has not yet passed.
(2/2) A friend yesterday received a letter from a conservative Republican member of Congress, dated Washington, December 16th, who says,“ Secession is rampant, and concession will not cure it.”

Friday December 21,1860

ARGUS (2/2) TO THE EDITOR – Don’t be too severe upon our members of Congress! Are you not aware that there is a Senatorial election soon to come of in this State? The Legislature, which is to elect the Senators, was itself chosen amid the glare and stimulus and spite of a wide-awake campaign, and our great men, who are looking after the Senatorship, must of course truckle to all the bad passions of four months ago. You ought not to think anything about the public dangers and public distresses, now. Don’t be too hard! -- **

Friday December 21, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/2) MAJOR ANDERSON – Major Anderson, of the USA, commanding at Fort Moultrie, in Charleston Harbor, is a native of Kentucky, and a graduate at West Point. In his younger days, and while a lieutenant, he had temporary command of the Kennebec Arsenal, at Augusta, Maine – Afterwards he was with Gen. Scott in Mexico, and was brevetted. At the close of the war the major was stationed at Fort Preble, Portland. Major Anderson is a very popular officer of unquestioned bravery, great prudence, and in all respects well qualified for the difficult position in which he is now placed by the War Department. He had a host of friends while in Maine.

Saturday December 22,1860

ARGUS (2/1) SOUTH CAROLINA SECEEDED – No one of our readers who has observed, with the slightest care the course of political events during the past few weeks, will be surprised to learn that South Carolina has passed an ordinance severing the bond which connects her with the Union. By solemn acts of a Convention, composed of delegates from all portions of the State, she has withdrawn from the confederacy of which she was one of the original members. But she is not, yet, in fact, out of the Union.

A commissioner is to be appointed to confer with the Federal Government, and many other formalities, proper and creditable under the circumstance, are to be gone through with before the severance can be perfect. These will necessitate delay, and in delay there is hope. The heat of passion may have time to cool, and second thoughts may be kinder ones.

(2/2) ARE MAINE CONGRESSMEN FOR THE UNION? – A day or two ago we remarked upon the pusillanimous conduct of five members of our Congressional delegation …One of the five – no less a personage than our Governor-elect, had courage enough to show his colors, which we may mildly say, were not the glorious banner of our Union. He thought perhaps, that he owed to a party which has continued him in a comfortable political existence, has fed him with the pap of office, and clothed him with the mantle of authority, unshrinking fealty in all cases. We admire his fidelity to his obligations; but who can help reprobating his disloyalty to the Union?

Saturday December 22, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/3) “ The Prospect Brightens “ -- The above words, which formed the title of our “leader” yesterday, were thought by some of our readers, at variance with the telegraphic column, which contained the South Carolina Ordinance of secession. We see no discrepancy. .. We know now better than before where we stand, and with something approximating to a distinct knowledge of the present can begin to prepare for the future. South Carolina alone cannot materially affect the wealth, the power, or the respectability of the Union by secession; and the indications of a better future, which we have noted, have been manifested in other states, as Louisiana, Mississippi, and Virginia, which have heretofore been considered second only to South Carolina in the secession movement. We still think that the prospect of a final settlement of all our troubles is brighter at the present time than it has been for at least two weeks.

Sunday December 23,1860 – No Edition Printed
Sunday December 23, 1860 – No Edition Printed

Monday December 24,1860

ARGUS (2/2) IMPORTANT INTELLIGENCE – The telegraph informs a breathless public that Mr. Abraham Lincoln ( who has …been generally regarded as President-elect of the United States ) “ received the news from Charleston calmly” -- Let the country take a long breath ; let the longitude of its visage be diminished ; and the latitude increased; let the weary tip-toes of suspense be relieved by the firmly-planted feet of confidence. But in spite of this cheering announcement, we cannot help feeling a lingering anxiety which might have been removed by a more minute statement of his manner of reception…If possible, have his photograph taken, representing him as he looked at the awful moment – and let us read in his eloquent lineaments the fate of our Union.

Monday December 24, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/1) REPUBLICANS IN CONGRESS-- …In truth the Republican party can do nothing, consistent with the continuance of its organization, excepting to stand by the Chicago platform. Mr. Lincoln may as well withdraw his claims upon the Presidency in favor of Mr. Breckenridge, or Mr. Douglas, as to attempt to administer the government upon the principle of one or the other the parties which supported those candidates – Abraham Lincoln is a Republican, believing in the truth and justice of those principles to which he owes his election and he will conduct the administration upon those principles if he conducts it at all.

Tuesday December 25,1860

ARGUS (2/1) THE RIGHT OF PROPERTY IN SLAVES – During the past ten years anti-slavery opinion has progressed, as we all know, with rapid strides. Ten years ago few men at the North hesitated to acknowledge the right of property in slaves, or were unwilling that the laws of State and Nation should be used to protect that right. Ten years ago the Southern planter might live peacefully in his home undisturbed by any fear that fanatical legislation of neighboring States might wrest his property from him…Let this point, that slaves are property, be once admitted by the North, as in reason it should be – and we should have renewed the season of comparative quiet which preceded the passage of the Nebraska bill. If slaves are property they must be protected, and if any State refuses that protection, it is guilty of treason.

(2/3) A slave in Charleston, S.C. has earned by overwork, in the last five years, $2,500, but refuses to buy his liberty, preferring to live in bondage.

Tuesday December 25, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/4) Mr. Hamlin returns to Maine and will not go back to Washington until he goes to assume his seat as Vice President… Mr.Washburn,Gov.-elect of Maine, in now in this city.
(2/3) William Smith, a colored man, who has purchased his freedom and is endeavoring to purchase the freedom of his mother and sisters, preparatory to starting for Liberia, is soliciting subscriptions from the charitable of our city. He comes highly recommended by many of the leading men of the country, and is the bearer of numerous letters. The balance still necessary for the accomplishment of his purpose,is very trifling.

Wednesday December 26,1860 – No Edition Printed
Wednesday December 26 1860 – No Edition Printed

Thursday December 27,1860

ARGUS (2/2) NATIONAL SINS – “ Ah, sinful nation! A people laden with iniquity! A seed of evildoers! Children that are corrupters! “ -- ISAIAH 1:4
We are called upon by President Buchanan’s proclamation to observe Friday the 4th prox., as a day of prayer on account of our national sins, and we perceive the Governors of Massachusetts and Connecticut have issued proclamations accordingly. We trust all the New England States will follow the example. Whether Gov. Morrill of Maine intends to atone for the sins of his political brethren by issuing a proclamation remains to be seen.
Our national sins, unless speedily repented of and succeeded by GOOD WORKS, will surely lead to a dissolution of the Union. Many predict that the days of the Black Republicans are numbered. Already the eyes of the better informed are open to the dreadful effect of the abolition excitement, and declare they will no longer “ give up to part what was meant for mankind. “

Thursday December 27,1860

ADVERTISER (2/2) UNION MEETINGS – It strikes us very forcibly that a proper preliminary to the calling of any meeting of the Union savers of New England at this time, would be a public declaration from leading Democrats , that all the statements made by them for the last six years, to the effect that the people of the North were desirous of interfering with the rights of the South, and that their ruling passion is hatred of the Southern people, are acknowledged to be libels an are withdrawn…IF leading Democrats will make their record clean, by telling the South the truth about the Republican party… we will gladly then consult with then concerning the propriety of holding Union meetings… They must first attempt to lay the devil of Disunion who have been chiefly instrumental in raising it.

(2/2) STEPHEN A. DOUGLAS—Mr. Douglas has hitherto been considered a man of pluck...There is the last of Douglas! His boasted courage all frightened out of him! His brave talks about enforcing the Constitution all silenced! Why, a chicken would show more firmness and more manhood than this boasted champion of popular sovereignty… A brave traitor is better than a cowardly and skulking demagogue.

Friday December 28,1860

ARGUS (2/2) FORT MOULTRIE EVACUATED -- A dispatch, received here yesterday noon, announced that on Wednesday night Fort Moultrie in Charleston Harbor was evacuated, the guns spiked, the carriages burned, and the fort rendered otherwise quite useless. We shall probably have some additional intelligence before our paper goes to press. In the mean time the following extract of a letter from the Washington correspondent of the Journal of Commerce may account in some measure for the evacuation and destruction of the Fort and the removal of the soldiers to Fort Sumpter :
“ I learn from friends of Major Anderson that he is loyal and gallant, and will perish in the attempt to defend the fort, rather than surrender it, unless ordered to do it.
If a hundred and fifty men be put in this fort, and if the gates be shut down, neither fort can be taken by South Carolina, without fleets and artillery. So say military men.”

(2/1) NAVAL -- Orders have been received at the Navy Yard, Portsmouth, N.H., to prepare the sloop-of-war Macedonian for sea immediately. She is about ready, and will sail shortly under sealed orders. Three hundred sailors arrived at the yard on Tuesday. Several of the crew escaped from the cars by jumping out of the windows – the doors being sealed.

(2/2) ANOTHER “ARTFUL DODGER” – The Hon. Hannibal Hamlin, Vice-President elect of the United States and Senator in Congress, has been out on a little pleasuring tour to New York and the Eastward, by way, perhaps of preparation for the arduous duties which await him after the Fourth of March. His modesty, we presume, forbids him to remain at this post in Washington and to take part in deliberations which involve the fate of the Union. This is not be to wondered at, if we remember that a gentleman occupying so high a position, must in Washington be the object of many curious glances, and that of course, so general a notice must be disagreeable to a sensitive man. But to one who did not remember this, it would seem strange that a man like Mr. Hamlin, who has been so long in the services of his country, should unhesitatingly desert it at a crisis like this.
“He who fights and runs away,
May live to fight another day.”
But he who runs away without fighting in the battles of the Union, has a chance of being sent to Congress by the intelligent Republicans of Maine.

Friday December 28, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/4) FORT MOULTRIE – The news of the evacuation of Fort Moultrie by Major Anderson, excited the most intense feeling, and as the reason for the act becomes known, the feeling will by no means diminish. The opinion very generally prevails, that Major Anderson obeyed the orders of Gen, Scott, in leaving the fort, and taking his troops to Fort Sumpter, which may more easily be defended by a small garrison. Moultrie is open to attack from the side of the city, and from its own immediate vicinity, the defences on the land side being very imperfect. Sumpter is situated on an island a little more than a mile from Moultrie, and is defensible on all sides… If South Carolina intends war, and means to take the initiative, then war and all its horror must come, and God must take care of the issue. If we only had a MAN at the head of the government, all present evils might still be remedied. But with the traitor Buchanan or an imbecile to direct, revolution and rebellion may grow so great that months, perhaps years, may pass before the last head of the hydra is cut off.

Saturday December 29,1860

ARGUS (2/ 2) PRESIDENT BUCHANAN -- More than any of his predecessors has Mr.Buchanan had trials and troubles. From the first months of his administration up to the present time, cares have gathered thickly and still more thickly about him – no man in his position could have escaped vilification…The disasters which have come upon our country are the work, not of Mr.Buchanan, not a single man, but of a party. The sectional feeling, wandering around the North like a midnight ghost …at last found a body in the Republican party, and stepped upon the scene an actor in the second revolution – this is the cause of our troubles, not MrBuchanan.
We may charge him with timidity, with weakness, with partiality; but let us not question his patriotism or his desire to leave the Union in the integrity which our fathers gave it.

Saturday December 29, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/1) THE NEWS – Actual rebellion and open war in South Carolina, confusion, imbecility and treason at Washington; behold the story which the telegraph sent us last night !... The rebels have taken forts Moultrie and Pickney; they have raised the Palmetto flag upon the fortifications, the arsenal, the Custom House and the Post Office; they have suspended communication by telegraph, and the government which should have protected the Federal property is wrangling and whining, doing nothing, attempting nothing. President Buchanan, the chosen chief of this nation,, sheds childish tears, and sends muskets to arm traitors…The North is loyal, let the North speak out, and speak in language that cannot be misunderstood. What though Carolina is in rebellion, what though the government is prostituted to treason? The people can, if they will, retrieve all losses and crush all enemies of the Union and the Constitution!

Sunday December 30,1860 – No Edition Printed

Sunday December 30, 1860 – No Edition Printed

Monday, December 31, 1860

ARGUS (2/1) UNION MEETING – Our neighbor reiterates his consent that the people of Portland should hold a Union Meeting. But it cannot conceal its fears that if such a meeting is gotten up, the Republican party may receive some detriment therefrom…We were informed some days ago that a prominent Republican of this city, whose recent journeying Westward had radically changed his political views, was “mousing around” seeking encouragement for his plan of a Union Meeting, with a great deal of earnestness. But suddenly (and we could not fail to notice that the brief visit of Gov. Washburn was coincident with the change) he ceased his efforts and relapsed into his pristine immobility. Perhaps he will begin again now that the Advertiser has signaled its willingness to tolerate Union Meetings.
(2/3) Of Army officers, including lieutenants here are 467 from the South and 579 from the North; and of Navy officers down to and including gunners there are 460 from the South and 712 from the North.
(2/3) NEW YEARS DAY –To-morrow begins the New Year – the time for making good resolutions and settling semi-annual accounts. In these troubulous times perhaps the usual hilarity of the day may be wanting – for the state of the nation may well fill the most hopeful mind with serious apprehension. But the younger portion of the community seem determined to recognize the day with honors not only unabated but increased…
Though we have no Broadway, no Fifth Avenue or Madison Square, we have yet fair and accomplished ladies who will preside with winning grace at hospitable homes, and entertain the thronging callers with a genuine Portland welcome – and that is what they can’t equal even in the metropolis of our country.

Monday, December 31, 1860

ADVERTISER (2/1) SECESSON -- Obscure and ill-informed scribblers, tuned hither and thither by every change of circumstances, belligerent to-day, and frightened into conciliation to-morrow, are now contending that the proper course to be pursued towards the rebels of Charleston is to gratify them in whim of keeping possession of Fort Moultrie and Castle Pickney, because, if government claims, and takes possession of its own, blood may be shed and civil war may be the consequence. We cannot argue the question with such opponents…Have we a Federal Union? Have we a Federal Government? If yes, are they of so little worth that we are the sacrifice them at the first summons of an unreasonable, a frenzied, mob? Forts, dockyards, arsenals, are scattered all along our Southern seaboard; are we to see them taken, one by one, our cannon turned against ourselves, our muskets in the hand of traitors, because, if we remonstrate, if we resist, traitors will become more treasonable?...If our Union and our government are worthy of a great people, the Palmetto flag will soon be dragged in the dust through the streets of Charleston.

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