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Journal and Correspondence of the Maryland Council of Safety, January 1-March 20, 1777
Volume 16, Preface 8   View pdf image (33K)
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viii Preface.

found necessary. Smallwood's letters of March 3 and 14 give interest-
ing particulars.

What has particularly impressed the editor in his study of these
records, is the self-possession and composure of all the leading men in
that great struggle. Neither danger, disaster, nor success seems to have
shaken their steadfast souls. In all the correspondence we find no
appeals to passion, no high-sounding phrases, no particle of the dema-
gogue's stock in trade. They had not been hurried into revolution,
but accepted it when it was seen to be inevitable, and with calm
determination they saw it to the end.

The eulogy passed by Chancellor Hanson on the Convention and
Council of Safety is worth quoting as a just tribute to the memory of
these truly great men. He says:

" Such an administration, the immediate offspring of necessity, might
have been reasonably expected to be subversive of that liberty which it
was intended to secure. But in the course of more than two years,
during which it was cheerfully submitted to by all except the advocates
for British usurpation, although many occasions occurred in which an
inremperate zeal transported men beyond the just bounds of modera-
tion, not a single person fell a victim to the oppression of this irregular
government. The truth is, that during the whole memorable interval
between the fall of the old, and the institution of the new form of govern-
ment, there appeared to exist among us such a fund of public virtue as
has scarcely a parallel in the annals of the world."


 

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Journal and Correspondence of the Maryland Council of Safety, January 1-March 20, 1777
Volume 16, Preface 8   View pdf image (33K)
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