The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 30, July 1926 - April, 1927 Page: 204
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204 Southwestern Historical Quarlerly
Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati, Dayton, Newark, and Mount
His passage through the State was a triumphal march. Vast
crowds assembled to welcome him. He was escorted by committees
sent forward from each of the cities where he was to stop. He
was made the guest of the State, and insisted that I should
accompany him on the tour. Ladies and citizens of all parties
called to greet him. Nowhere was the demonstration more marked
than at Cincinnati. The "Burnett" house was constantly thronged
with prominent citizens, and the ovation tended him that night was
grand. After the Oration he was escorted back to the hotel by a
host of admirers and he and they were alike gratified.
We had adjoining rooms at the hotel, with a door opening be-
tween them, and when left alone for the first time, I spoke to him
of the Presidency. The subject had evidently been previously sug-
gested to him by letters. After listening attentively to me, he
said: "George, the South Carolinians would never permit my
nomination. They want disunion, and know that I am for the
Union"-By South Carolinians he meant the Calhoun element
throughout the South which was strong in numbers and composed
of able men.
I then named the States that I thought he could certainly carry,
but he replied: "National Conventions have become worse than
the caucus system and my nomination would be impossible. If
there was any chance for it I would be willing to run as Jackson,
Clay, Crawford and Adams did in 1824. Now remember what I
say: If two more National Conventions are held after this year;
there will be a bold attempt made to dissolve the Union. It will
first be necessary for the Calhoun men to disrupt the Democratic
party-and probably there will be civil war."
Although Seward had proclaimed that the question of slavery
was "irrepressible" and a small number of men in the North advo-
cated abolition by force of arms, and we all talked more or less of
the danger of dissolution, but few in the North and West believed
that war would follow. I was one of those who regarded such a
thing as impossible. But his words were prophetic! Two more
National Conventions were held. At the one in Charleston (1860)
the Democratic party was fatally divided for a time, and on the
14th of April in the following year the first gun was fired at the
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 30, July 1926 - April, 1927, periodical, 1926; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117142/m1/224/: accessed August 17, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.