Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 16.djvu/260

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254 Southern Historical Society Papers.

the right of Congress to impose duties to encourage manufactures. Here, then, were three distinct issues the real grounds of difference which culminated in our war.

Next followed the contest over the Virginia and Kentucky Resolu- tions and the Alien and Sedition Laws, which resulted in the election of Mr. Jefferson over Mr. Adams as President, and the temporary check to the rapid strides of the government to consolidation. But it was only a check Mr. Jefferson could recover no lost ground for the Slate's Rights party. Then, unfortunately, came the war of 1812 with Great Britain, absorbing the attention of his successor, Mr. Madison, arresting all efforts to carry out the doctrines and policy which had brought the party into power, and giving a strong impulse to centralization.

It is difficult to keep up with all the changes of names and organi- zation of the parties during the fifteen years succeeding the war of 1812, but a study will show that under whatever name or disguise assumed, the great struggle still was between the State's Rights, or local government, and National, or centralized government. The first measure of the old National party, then calling themselves " The National Republican Party," in 1828 was the act known at the time as the "Bill of Abominations," which, throwing aside the pretense of revenue, openly imposed a tax for protection a measure which forms a prominent chapter in the history of this State.

As you all know, upon the passage of this act Mr. Calhoun coun- selled resistance. Whether our great statesman contemplated, by the resistance he advised, a forcible resistance or a resistance through the courts, it is useless now to discuss; its discussion would only revive the domestic dissension of the Nullification and Union parties of 1832. It is enough that a large party in the State understood his advice to be resistance by force, and acted upon it ; and that the State took measures to maintain by arms its denial of the right of Congress to impose upon it duties not authorized by Us construction of the Constitution, and that in doing so it had the support of many of the ablest statesmen of the country and the volunteered aid from the people of other States ; while on the other hand General Jackson, as President, openly marshalled the forces of the Union to war upon the State, and upon those who upheld her.

The issue, which was so imminent, was avoided by mutual conces- sions of ihe United States and State Governments. But I desire to call your attention, my comrades, to the fact that the late war in which we took part had all but commenced in 1832, and that the real ques-