Page:Henry Adams' History of the United States Vol. 1.djvu/119

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.


Chapter 4: Intellect of the Middle States

Between New England and the Middle States was a gap like that between Scotland and England. The conceptions of life were different. In New England society was organized on a system,—a clergy in alliance with a magistracy; universities supporting each, and supported in turn,—a social hierarchy, in which respectability, education, property, and re­ligion united to defeat and crush the unwise and vicious. In New York wisdom and virtue, as under­stood in New England, were but lightly esteemed. From an early moment no small number of those who by birth, education, and property were natural leaders of the wise and virtuous, showed themselves ready to throw in their lot with the multitude. Yet New York, much more than New England, was the home of natural leaders and family alliances. John Jay, the governor; the Schuylers, led by Philip Schuyler and his son-in-law Alexander Hamilton; the Livingstons, led by Robert R. Livingston the chancellor, with a promising younger brother Ed­ward nearly twenty years his junior, and a brother-­in-law John Armstrong, whose name and relationship will be prominent in this narrative, besides Samuel Osgood, Morgan Lewis, and Smith Thompson, other