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Internal Improvements. – River and Harbor Bills.-Tonnage Duties.—
Douglas visits Europe.—Not presented to Queen Victoria.-Court Costume.
LIFE OF STEPHEN A, DOUGLAS
“THE issues of all human action are uncertain. No man can undertake to predict positively that even virtue will meet with its full reward in this world; but this much may be said with entire certainty, that he who succeeds in marrying his name to a great principle, achieves a fame as imperishable as truth itself.” Such was the language in which a senator from Virginia concluded an able and most eloquent speech upon the Kansas-Nebraska Bill. The prediction has been verified by history. By that act of legislation, the name of STEPHEN A. Douglas was “married” to the principle of Popular Sovereignty; and, even had he no other claim upon the grateful memory of the American people, that indissoluble blending of his name with the most vital principle of constitutional liberty would alone render his name as imperishable as truth itself. The name of STEPHEN A. Douglas, therefore, has, by that single and most memorable act, been stamped ineffaceably upon the pages of his country’s history, and, though contemporaneous writers may have recorded the most widely differing judgments upon his conduct, and future historians may differ as widely as those who were present at, and who were participants in the consequences of the passage of that great act as to the measure of censure or praise that should be awarded to him, still the assertion of the senator from Virginia will stand verified, and, in defiance of all the bitterness of his enemies, throughout all coming time the name of DougLAs and the great principle of Popular Sovereignty will be so linked in the records of the past, and so closely identified with the memories of the present, that the fame of the former can only perish in the overthrow of the latter—an occurrence only possible in the total destruction of truth itself.