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Groton Monument

Groton Monument image
Parent Issue
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James MoKitoE,an A. S. Locturer, givcs lie íbllowing account of'his visit to Groion tlonument as published in the Liberator. From VYesterly, I went to New Loridon and visited the Groton Monument, Fort Griswold, aud Fort Trumljuli'- all places ot' ihrilling interest lo an American heart. Upon a maible tablet ou the Souih side ot the monument are the ñames ol ticse men who, laboring' under an awful delusion, aacnticed their Uves to the demon of war, on the battle ground near by: sume ofibera tbinkiog, perheps, '.hut they were i doing God service. Huw terrible to live i or dio, huving a heart agitated y sueh i learful malignan t pasaioos as necessarily spring up in the breasis of such men, desperátely grasping eacli other in an obstínate and bloody struggle fbr existencel ís ihe mild and peaceuble spint of Jesús in the imdst of such a conflict? Are the mildnes, meroy and love oi' our Saviour, tiis kindness und liis sytnpathy, fruits of ihal same spirit thaí protripls men, excited by the huracane oí" wtir tu dirk his neighbor, blow out his bruins,or tear him in peices, and leave lns unbúried ümbs a prey ior dogs-, moe mercitul thun the uiurdofe'r? Upün tho tablet were tho ñames of lwo men, placed last upon the list oí' fame,and áot u iutlc apart frotó the rest. Tuis excitcd my curiosty.and led me lo enquire the reason. The wooiaü who keeps the Iteys to the monument, told me, she hud ofien been intbrmed that the meu whose ñames had betn thus separated ('rom the resl weie slavesl! If this be true,thouglit[ - and I have no reason to doubt it - wnut a. strange inconsistency does il present to ihe view of the woriii! VVhy il is enougb to ïnuUe a statute speuki Slaves figluiug tbr thcir opprossor's righlfal fightiug anti dying that the tyrant who wiih ruthless Imnds, had invaded ihe aliar dedi'cated to. their inalienable tVeedom, miglit ntt be obüged to pay a two penny tax upun '.eu! ] Wny, such an instance ot generous and tbrgiving fidelity, on the pan of men 10bbedand plundered of every right, towards cruel exlortioners, should liave been celeIbrated in verse,procluimed trom the press and trumpeted in the forum! Thtir names should have beenemblazoned in gold upon the head of the tablet where the name of Lcdyard now stands, who was conunan der of Fort Griswold when she was taken; and himself (is the same woman infonn(d inc the oumer of one of the colorednen who died in ihe desperate conflict IVben I was a boy, I used to read with ears ihe story of Ledyard's baseassassmuion.-buiiortho Ufe of me, I could nol ;ry over itagnin, or, il 1 wept at all, it vould be for the laborcr whom. he haddefrauded ofhis hirc, and whose name is tictined offby itselfon a monument, dedicated to equal rights, by the same spirit of prejudice that hunted down to the grave lis birihriglu inmiunitics, whilo he was living. Had a railroad Corporation, a body j of steambout propriolors, the owners of a grave yard, a chuich cominiuee, or an ecclesiastical council, built Groton mouumen!, I should not have been surpnscd that these natnes, rendeied illusirious bybravery snd military prpwess,snouia ,wve been thus niggnrdly shut out by thern selves,# if inlectiousjfor irom such withered anti blighted specimens of humanity, I could have cxpecled notiiing betier; but tiiat a great people, whea about to bui d and dedícate a monument ío equal righis, Ishouldhave been so regarcüess of thcir own credit, as well ns of commoti honor, as to excite the curiosity of all who muy chance to gaze upon the monument, by I thrusting into a 'negro pew' the ñames ot tvvo men held as pmperty by tbose who died fighting for the very liberty upon which ihey themselves trampled, is a ,hin.rfinuallv aurprisinsand ndiculous.-IancTrance may excuso our falhers, bul nol (gebuilde uf ihatgranite pe:for the liabt of time had shonewiih fall brillianc upon the dark nconsistency, .for lhe first monumental sloue was laid. When fature generations shall eagerly enqüire, Avhy ihese names were separated f rom their fellows, their fathers must teil with shame the reason-'These were names of slaves!' The foreign anstocrat, when brought by curiosity to this battle-ground, shallmako the same iaquify, and eball bé toldwiih a blush, 'They were slaves. - As a lover of my country I would say ; such a hypocritical and detestable trute toliberty,as Groton monument, may the stormaoverlbrowitho sea envelope; or the earih open her momh and devour! A Imohurnenl in honor (41) ol the m.ghty dead! Yes just such an honor as every jhonestman would feel lbo pillar ol saltin the neighborhood of Sodom lo be to himsclf, wei e hc one of Lot's wile's immediaic clesi-emiuns!A slump orator out wesl, inepeaking oí" ihc intention of the framcrsof the Constitution, said : - "Can ii be supposed that t was the intention that the sweat of the toiling millions should be alhered into one vast reservoir, in order that the broiers should enjoy the exquisite pleasurc oí balhing in il?'1 - Boston Times. We say no: nor was it the iniention to irotect a few sltiveholders in the exclusive privilege of living on the unpaid labor o others, and of whipping women and steal