OCR Interpretation

The Florida agriculturist. [volume] (DeLand, Fla.) 1878-1911, July 17, 1878, Image 1

Image and text provided by University of Florida

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn96027724/1878-07-17/ed-1/seq-1/

What is OCR?

Thumbnail for

The Florida Agriculturist.
Vol. 1.
Contents of this Number.
I‘age 73—Address of Judge Cocke.
Page 74—Going After the Coves, poetry ;
For Ifis Sake: Josh Billings ou Birds;
Pago 75 —Notes, From Our Traveling
C orrespendont; Advertisinents.
Page 76—Editorials: Pine Apple Culture;
Astronomical Notes; Floridiana.
Page 77 —Address, continued from page
73; Advertisinents.
Page7B—The Profits of Geese Gaining;
Gulf Fish; Shetland Dainties; The Ole
ander Poisionous ; How to Sit; Compost
ing muck; Legal Notices.
Page 79—American Tea ; Advertisinents.
Page 73—Telegraphic: Advertisements.
An Address Delivered Before the
Press Association of Florida at
DeLand, by Judge Wm,
Archer Cocke.
Amid the sylvan scene of wood
land and garden, of fragrant grove
and fruitful field, of sparkling water
and flowing stream, sacred alike to
nymph and naiad ; not only the sons
and daughters ot the Union, but the
children of this, and distant lands
have gathered, to meet each other
as brothers and sisters; to grasp the
friendly hand; to salute the bright
and beaming eye ; and to feel, and to
talk, as man to man, as friend to
friend, irrespective of locality, or
country, on this more than centen
nial birthday of July, or American
political and social philosophy;—of
the liberty it has vouchsafed to man,
under just and well administered
law; of the principles entwined
around the political, legal and moral
system of American liberty, which if
preserved by your morality may, and
doubtless will, long endure to bless
and make happy the sons and daugh
ters of man; —here, beneath the sun
are mingled iu one, let us all meet
around the common altar of our
oountry, in devotion to the well reg
ulated principles of the liberty we
now enjoy.
But if we cease to bring the offer
ing of high Christian virtue and pure
morality, and spread them around
the altars of our country, in every
public, private and social relation, we
may, like so many other people, at
every age of the world and in every
clime, but realize the sad idea that
government and laws are but tempor
ary and fluctuating expedients to con
trol and regulate human society.
The contest between the American
• Colouists and the British Govern
ment, which resulted iu the establish
ment of the “ Constitution and the
Union,” has developed the most re
markable and the grandest events in
'human history, and has led to results
more calculated to instruct, to enlight
en and to make happy the race ef men,
Than any series of events recorded
pm history, excepting only those of
the Reformation—that reformation,
and exposition of truth and right,
which opened the pages of the Bible
and the doors of the church to every
one that thirsted for the waters of
I fear I am not able to do justice
to the noble subject on which I would
prefer to address this audience on the
Fourth day of July,
For more than ace ntury the peo
ple of the United States have assem
bled on this day, in city and hamlet
and country, to listen im hundreds of
places to what in the phrase of ver
nacular history, is called “ Fourth of
July Orations.” They have abound
ed in high sounding pletho ric rhetori
cal eentances of eulogy on the char
acters of the actors in tho Revolution
of 177 G—with superficial view 7 * of the
events ot that period, with abundant
allusions to that famous bind, the
American Eagle, whose elastic pin
ions enables it from the center oi‘‘ the
Union to batho its plumage at one
and the same time in the pla id wat
ers of Pacific, or tho wind tossed
waves of the Atlantic.
It is not my purpose to talk to you
in such terms. There is a philosophy
in history; its events unroll and
evolve principles, and produce and
develope characters which illustrate
the cause and effect of human action
in a natural sense, from which suc
j ceediug generations, if thoughtful
and prudent, may learn lessons of
; wisdom in political and social philos
ophy, which will guide them along
: the pathway of life, and conduct
j them safely therein.
| The mariner with the assistance of
nautical astronomy, has learned to
! traverse the ocean, and with the aid
i of mechanical skill and experience,
‘ to meet the storm and the billows,
and to ride in security through the
j combined force of these angry ele
ments, and amidst the darkest storms
be has the unerring compass. What
the science of navigation is to the
manner, so lias, and will be, if skill
fully used, the chart of history to the
statesman, the author, the practical
citizen, to the men iu office, and to
those out of office ; to the great body
politic, which embraces the whole
population of the United States.
By the chart of history, I do not
mean a printed map like that which
accompanied many of our school
books, with dates and events dotted
here aud there over its rnotly sur
face; but the knowledge of those
principles and their application with
an application of those wise and vir
tuous characters, who amidst trial
and suffering, and with sacrifices that
adorn and make useful the anti-selfish
men of our race, as they arise super
ior to the storms of adversity, and
make for themselves an honest and
honorable and a useful fame which
shines along the shores of time,
bright and lasting light houses for
all who act in the great drama of
human affairs; and there are none so
humble that have not their allotted
stage of nfef for'’God has made no
man without a purpose; nor created
a human being free from duties and
By philosophy of history, I mean
more than a series of remarks upon
history, or on any connected events
in history, it embraces the general
results and connection of all past
transactions in the history of the
hnman race, and the material, moral,
social and religious effects of those
events. There are also series of
events in the history of a nation
which taken consecutively lead to cer
tain results, in every way affecting
tho physical, the moral, the political,
the social progress of a nation.
The Hebrews, the Assyrians, the
Greeks, the Romans, the English, and
the various nations of Europe in mod
ern times have all their special
history. Yet there is a combined in
fluence and connection binding in one
vast volume the philosophy of histo
ry, as their seperatc series of events
make its many chapters. In the in
vestigation of this endless subject we
have all the elements of physical geog
raphy, climate, habits, culture, edu
cation, and every distinguishing char
acteristic of man, for a study, for ev
en nature herself has her mute but
universal language and immeasurable
symbolical writings. But it is only
of the philosophy of American histo
ry that I would now briefly speak:
The Fouth day of July, 1776, is an
historic day in North America. A
comparatively small portion of North
America had been ior many years
: mostly settled by English colonists.
I For many years they were loyal, du
tiful subjects of the mother country.
This mother country had not been un
kind to her children according to the
well established doctrines at that
day, of political rights and of juris
' prudence, as known and acknowiedg
ed throughout Europe. A distant
government could not appreciate the
wants and necessities of a people with
whose intere ts they were not ac
quainted ; while distance itself, re
i moteness from home interests, depel-
I oped a selfishness in the mother coun-
I try calculated to chill the love of the
neglected offspring. This was natur
al ; and tho Fourth day of July, 1776,
gave rise to an action on the part of
DeLand, Florida, Wednesday, July 17,1878.
the Continental Congress, which, re
sulting in a Delaration of Independ
ence, was but a proclamation of the
American Congress of the causes of
grievance at the action of the mother
country; and;tVdetermination to be
The political philosophy based ou
the natural right of the Declaration
of Independence is the right of revo
lution on the part of an oppressed
people, and the instrument of that
revolution is the sword. It is a mor
al right, arid lhapolical philosophy of
Europe and America has endorsed
the truth of tbepDeclaration of Inde
“That all men are endowed by
their Creator with certain unaliena
ble rights; that among these are life,
liberty and pursuit of happiness,” and
that morover it may become neces
sary for one*Cfple to dissolve the
political banas fehich may have con
nected them with another. Here was
the moral as well as the political right
which placed juftace in the sword of
Washington, Mid expunged the law
of treason fronj/jj>he British statutes,
so far as an Amariwm colonist was in
volved or interested.
by the RepregMKTves of America
in Congress was the proc
lamation of a people wishing to be
free, and having Uhe'right to be free,
it it involved a AWE to arms by ev
ery one capable ottaising a musket to
his shoulder. . Foillhe language of
the paper itself history of the
present king of Graft Britian is a his
tory of repeated Snpvies and usurpa
tions, all havirqj, in direct object, the
establishment of sill absolute tyranny
over these States v
It is a matt* v .story, from, the
necessary for the publih good,” to
that charging the kir.g with exciting
domestic insurrection arriong us, was
historically true, either of the king or
Parliment If the petitions for a re
dress of grievances presented by the
•colonists had been favorably receiv
ed, instead of being answered by “re
peated injury,” the revolution would
have been postponed, but only for a
time, for revolt and independence
were sooner or later inevitable, for
they were political, financial, social,
religious necessities. And well and
truly could the colonists appeal, as
they religiously did, to the Supreme
Judge of the world, for the rectitude
of their intentions. For the support
of their declarations they not only
mutually pledged to each other lives,
fortunes and sacred honors, but went
into the midst of battle, feeble, few,
poor and badly armed, with a firm
reliance on the protection of Divine
Our forefathers, —the Patres Con
scripti of the revolution of 1776, were
not without historical precedents in
t heir Declaration of Independence.—
They could go hack to Magna Char
ter, made in the 9th year of King
Henry 111, thirty times confirmed by
kings and Parliment. To*the Peti
tion of Right, drawn up by Sir Ed
ward Coke; the act for the bettor se
curing the liberty of the subject, and
for the prevention of imprisonment
beyond the seas, commonly called
“The Habeas Corpus Act.” 81. Ch.
11., May, 1679; and the Bill of
Rights, 1, William and Mary, 1689.
The carefully stated causes for a re
sort to arms against the mother coun
try, as appears in tho Declaration of
Independence, shows the ideas of the
American statesmen of that period in
relation to great politico-philosophic
truths, which to tins day permeate our
system of government, state and na
tional. Conspicuously among them
are taxation and representation, in
dependence of the judiciary, no stand
ing army, and tho independence and
superiority ol the civil ove: the mili
tary power.
The colonists were now fully com
mitted to war, and hostilities began
to thicken round the young altar of
American liberty, but its tender and
early years were guarded aud pro-1
tected by brave and patriotic soldiers
in the field, and wise, honest, and un
selfish statesmen in council—this was
before the day of American politi
cians, and the army was of soldiers,
not office seekers and partisan huck
In 1778, two years after the Dec
laration of Independence was adopt
ed, the Continental Congress with
a representation from thirteen States
adopted “Articles of Confederation
and perpetual union between the
States.” It was a confederation, yet
a perpetual union of sovereign States,
and the style of the confederacy was
the “United States of America.” By
stipulation each State retained its
“sovereignty, freedom and independ
ence ,”and they entered into “a firm
league of friendship with each other
for their defence, the security of their
liberties and their mutual aud gener
eral welfare.” The names of many
who had signed the declaration of
1776, signed the first constitution the
world had seen—the Articles of Con
federation of the United States.
But little has been comparatively
written about this famous and justly
distinguished constitution as a form
of government.
The general interests of the United
States, legislative, executive and ju
dicary, were managed by a Congress
consisting of delegates annually ap
pointed as the Legislature of each
State shall direct; and how purely
representative was this body, for any
member could be recalled at any time
and another placed in his seat. This
was an efficient system of govern
ment ; presented a grand Congress,
with all the powers of government in
one'House, and was successful, for,
with the assistance of the army, it
the £BLQ
nurtured the tender scions of that
liberty, which, disenthralling three
millions of people and preserving the
sovereignty of thirteen States; now, in
one hundred years preserving still its
identity of principles, though the Ar
ticles of Confederation, have, in order
to form a more perfect Union, spread
the enlarged mantle of justice and
tranquility over more than forty mil
lions of people; thirty-nine States,
still free, sovereign and independent,
and with the right and capacity to
remain so.
The result of the declarat ion of in
dependence was the revolutionary
war. The result of that war was a
written constitution, the Articles of
Confederation, and then American
freedom; then the constitution of the
United States, with the form of gov
ernment and the principles of human
liberty under which we have lived
for a century, and by virtue
of which has developed a nation of
confederated and sovereign States,
with local and general governments,
each with seperate and distinct ma
chineries complete in themselves.
And if maintained as organized, and
according to their purpose, meaning
and intent, perfect and enduring per
haps for ages.
It is the admiration and tho won
der of the philosophers and writers
and statesmen of the civilized world,
as they look on the constitution of
tho national government, sole and
self-poised in the political firmament,
liko the sun in the heavens, with
States, like the planetary system, re
volving around a central light, sustain
ed by a centripetal and centrifugal
force, which produce and maintain a
political equilibrium not unlike the
Wo have reached a period that wit
nessed the close ol the Revolutiona
ry war. The government of the Uni
ted States, under the Articles of Con
federation, was a democratic repub
lic, a union of independent common
The Articles of Confederation were
incomplete. The project of remod
eling the Government originated at
Mount Vernon. In 1785, Washing
ton, in conversation with a company
of Statesman at his home, advised
the calling ofaCouvuntion. Theprop-
osition was received with favor. In
September, 1786, the Representatives
of five States assembled. All of the
States except Rhode Island responded
to the call, and on the second Mon
day in May, 1787, the Representa
tives assembled at Philadelphia. I
will not recite on this occasion the
history of that Convention, its de
tails are known. Washington was
its President. Edward Randolph
introduced a resolution to set aside
the Articles of Confederation, and
adopt anew Constitution. A com
mittee was apointed to receive the
Articles. .Early in September the
work was done; the report of the
committee was adopted ; that report
was the Constitution of the United
States, written by Governor Morris,
of Pennsylvania.
The effect of this Constitution was
to make a stronger bond of union be
tween the States; todevelope a com
mon brotherhood that should bin and in
cords of patriotic affection all parts
of the Union. In doing this without
discussing the features of the Con
stitution, it was evident that the ne
cessities of existing history demand
ed a stronger form of government,
and that necessity was obeyed by
creating a Government which made
its Constitution, and the laws passed
in pursuance thereof, the supreme
law of the land, by giving it a self
sustaining power; and to sustain that
power it ha3 a limitless purse, and a
sword supreme on land and sea; an
army ana a navy, limited only by
the will of the people through their
Representatives in the Legislative
and Executive Departments of the
A statesman has said : “ Eternal
vigilance is the price of liberty.
sopbic and practical truih innerennor
every Government which is its oon
stant tendency to increase its powei .
The student of the political an and
constitutional history of the Unite and
States can not fail to observo tha t
this is tiue, and every effort to resin t
the National Government draws out
its resources for self defence, and
strengthens it as does exercise de
velope and strengthen the muscle and
fiber of the human system.
A distinguished writer has said:
That every one deserves liberty, but
it is impossible to say what it is
We will not dispute whether the
word can bo defined; the original
meaning of the word JLibertus meant
the abolition of royalty, and came to
signify in Rome simply Republican
Government, abolition of royalty
We have advanced beyond that idea
In France and Mexico, Libertas and
Republicanism have been overwhelm
ed time and again in despotism, and
the flag of the Republic shrouded in
blood. Lieber, a distinguished Ger
man, but for years a professor in one
of our Southern Colleges, thus quotes
Webster; “ The spirit of liberty is,
indeed, a bold and fearless spirit; it
is a cautious, sagacious, discriminat
ing, farseeing intelligence ; it is jeal
ous of encroachment, jealous of pow
er, jealous of man. It demands
checks ; it seeks for guards; it insists
on securities; it entrenches itself be
hind strong defences, and fortifies
itself with all possible care against
assaults of ambition and passion. ”
This is the nature of constitutional
liberty, of our liberty, and it is my
duty from the position I occupy be
fore this audience to say such liberty
is always in danger.
Lieber, in connection with the re
marks of Webster, says: “Unity of
power, if sought lor in wide-spread
democracy, must always lead to mon
archist absolutism. Virtually it is
such; for it is indifferent what the
appearance or name may be, the
democracy is not a unit iu reality ;
yet actual absolutism existing, it
must be wielded by one man. All
absolutism is essentially a one man
government." We are still satisfied
with a democratic system of govern
ment; it is the safest resort for freo-
Contiuaed on page 77.
No. 10.

xml | txt