Sad as it is to write of this or that as his last word or deed, there is a mournful pleasure for those who knew and loved him in remembering that every last word and deed were characteristic of his great nature. Politically he was a Democrat to the last. "Is the Pilot a Democratic paper?" asked a correspondent. He replied in the issue of May 31, and his answer is worth preserving for its exposition of the truest Democratic doctrine:
The principles of Democracy as laid down by Jefferson are to us the changeless basis of sound politics and healthy republicanism. We are not Democratic simply as being partisan; but we are partisan because we are Democratic. We would abide by Jeffersonian Democracy if there were no Democratic party in existence.
Democracy means to us the least government for the people, instead of more or most.
It means that every atom of paternal power not needed for the safety of the Union and the intercourse of the population should be taken from the Federal Government and kept and guarded by the States and the people.
It means the spreading and preserving of doubt, distrust, and dislike of all sumptuary and impertinent laws.
It means that law shall only be drawn at disorder, and that all affairs that can be managed without disorder should be managed without law.
It means that all laws not called for by public disorder are an offense, a nuisance, and a danger.
It means watchfulness against Federal legislation for such State questions as education, temperance, irrigation, and all other questions that may arise and are sure to arise in the future.
It means the teaching of absolute trust in the people of the States to understand and provide for their own interests.
It means home rule in every community right through our system, from the township up to the State Legislature; and above that, utter loyalty to the Union.It means antagonism to all men, classes and parties that throw distrust and discredit on the working or common people, and who insinuate or declare that there is a higher, nobler, or safer patriotism among