Puslapio vaizdai
PDF
„ePub“

be the cause of civilization and progress. Nor do they take this side only for the reason that England stood by us and prevented European intervention in our war with Spain. Most of them recognize the intolerable misrule of the Boer government, from which Americans as well as Englishmen have long suffered in the Transvaal, and the hopelessness of obtaining relief by diplomacy or moral suasion. Not a few of them affirm, what is manifestly true, that only the comparative weakness of the Boer Republic has kept England from applying coercion long ago; and much the same note is sounded by many of the leading German newspapers, which scoff at Boer mediævalism and, in the Kaiser's name, declare for rigid neutrality while England is at

as

war.

a

Boer precipitation of hostilities came like a thunder-clap upon England, unprepared as she was for war, and far from even expecting it as the outcome of the situation in South Africa. This in itself is proof that she harbored no thought of aggression in the Transvaal, though she must have known that the Boers had for years been preparing for a conflict when ready to trample upon British suzerainty. The ultimatum, sharp and offensive in its declaration, was, on the other hand, a revelation of the extent and bitterness of Boer hostility toward the English, and this was emphasized by the desire to take them unawares, and so snatch the prestige of early successes in hurling the combined Boer forces across the frontiers upon British possessions. The chief attack of the Boer invading force, under General Joubert, was directed against Natal; while smaller bodies of the Free State and Transvaal burghers marched upon the western towns of Kimberley and Mafeking in Cape Colony and Bechuanaland. From both of these frontier towns the women and children were early sent southward to Cape Town, and the towns have since been in a state of siege.

To meet the crisis that had arisen, an army corps was despatched to the Cape from England, from India, and from the garrisons in the Mediterranean; while with the summoning of the English Parliament the reserves were called out in the United Kingdom, and contingents were sent for service in South Africa from England's colonies. The more seri

ous movement on the part of the Boers was, as we have said, directed against the north-eastern tongue of Natal, which abuts upon the South African Republic. Here the invading burghers were confronted by the British forces in the neighborhood of Glencoe and Dundee, under Generals Symons and Yule, with a reserve at Ladysmith under the chief command of General Sir George White. The Boers concentrated at Glencoe at the outset were at first severely handled by the British troops, and later another body of them suffered heavy losses in a desperate engagement at Elandslaagte. But their strategy

as well their courage not only saved them from rout, but enabled them to turn the tables terribly upon the English,-a portion of whose cavalry was entrapped and forced to surrender. The disaster took a more serious turn with the wounding and subsequent death of General Symons, and the enforced retreat, in face of a greatly superior irruption of Boers, upon Ladysmith. Here misfortunes continued to pursue the British, though so far they have maintained a gallant defence of their new position against the persistent assaults and clever tactics of the burghers. In an

attack ordered by Sir George White, with the view partly to relieve the situation and partly to draw the Boers into the open country, and so protect British communications to the southward, portions of two English regiments and a mounted battery, having lost their gun equipment and ammunition supplies by a mule stampede, were surrounded and compelled to surrender.

As we go to press, the situation of the English troops beleagured at Ladysmith is the cause of grave anxiety, since the place is believed by military critics to be indefensible; while the Boers, who are brilliant fighters and skilled in strategy, largely outnumber the weakened though not dispirited garrison. With the arrival in the country of the new English army corps under Sir Redvers Buller, the commander-in-chief, relief must soon come to Ladysmith and the peril for the present will be passed. Brief as the struggle has so far been, it is obviously one of deadly earnest, and there has been on both sides grievous loss of life. The Boers have fought as brave men who have everything at stake, and though theirs is the crime of precipitating the war

Overtures

[ocr errors]

they have shown how grimly and stoutly while all must know that the present war they can wage it and yet do so with in South Africa is not of England's seekhumanity to the sick and wounded. ing, but has been rudely thrust upon her.

Later news relieves the situation much In the Dutch African Republics it may be for the British, who have begun to show no crime to resist British ascendancy, but greater respect for the splendid fighting needlessly to provoke war is surely not in qualities of the Boers and warinessin attack- accord with the Gospel message or with ing them, while demonstrating their own the humane spirit of the age. traditional skill and courage on the field. The invested towns are not only holding bravely out, but brilliant sorties have been Filipino Peace Whatever truth there may made from them in which frightful losses

be in the reported overwere inflicted on the burghers. These tures which Aguinaldo is said to have British successes, if they do not wipe out made to the American military authorithe memory of early disasters, do much to ties in Luzon, peace is not likely to be the avenge them. The treacherous use of the result, in the present mind and mood of white flag by the Boers we cannot bear to the McKinley Administration. The one accept without corroboration, since, if condition, we are told, on which General true, it would cast a dark and ineffaceable Otis will have anything to say to Aguinstain upon their humanity and bravery. aldo or anyone of the responsible Tagal

leaders is that he shall first make submis

sion for himself and the so-called “rebels » No European Happily for England there who have been driven to insurgency in

Intervention would seem to be no prob- defence of their hearths and homes in the ability of foreign intervention in the con- Philippines, and have consequently detest now going on in South Africa. Ger- . terminedly resisted American authority. many has positively pledged herself to That this attitude toward Aguinaldo and neutrality, with the understanding, it is the native army we have long been fightsaid, that she is to have a free hand in ing on the islands is official, may be readAsia Minor, where she is vigorously prose- ily gathered from the speeches of the cuting railway plans and has the good will President in his recent tour in the West, of the Turk. The French and Russian as well as from the tenor of the prelimiunderstanding, it is true, is a menace; but nary Report of the Philippine Commission, both France and Russia stand in awe of which has just been published. Evidently England's navy, a strong demonstration the only hope for peace, therefore, is of which we have just seen in the Mediter- either subjugation or voluntary submisranean, and neither of them is likely to sion to our rule, though the President has disturb the Triple Alliance, especially been telling us, in oft-repeated words, while the German and British Courts con- that the United States is conducting a tinue friendly and there are signs of an war only of liberation, and that our counAnglo-German agreement. Both Paris try's flag is the emphatic symbol of selfand St. Petersburg, we know, however,

government!

Whether imperialism or are but biding their time, for France has anti-imperialism is to prevail among us not resigned herself to England's designs and the approaching session of Congress in Egypt; while Russian intrigue has al- will, it is to be hoped, settle that, there is ways, as its objects, to seek an outlet from no doubt that the nation as a whole is now the Euxine into the Mediterranean and desirous of peace, and that, of course, control of the Persian Gulf.

with honor. How peace with honor is While nothing is more easy to generate best to be secured — whether by putting among the nations than war passions, the 60,000 men we now have in the Philipmutual jealousy, and not the restraining pines to the further work of annexation influences of the recent Peace Conference and conquest, with the attendant heavy at The Hague, prevents a general concert expenditure of blood and treasure, or by of the Continental Powers. Nor, were honestly retracing our steps and abandonthis otherwise, would there be much ing the attempt to subdue an alien people justification for an attack upon Eng- by trampling upon liberty and upon our land. No European Power, if perhaps traditional regard for human rights - we we exclude Holland, has any interest in must leave Congress to say. Meanwhile, Boer affairs or motive for intervention; Presidential appeals to “Duty taking hold

[ocr errors]
[blocks in formation]

ne88

[ocr errors]

of Destiny” and statements to the effect that « Providence has put the Philippine archipelago in our lap," and yet has called upon us to "fork over ) twenty millions of dollars to Spain, should, as a matter of good taste, be dispensed with, and the voice of conscience in the people be permitted to be heard.

☆ Vice-President As the present number Hobart's III

passes from our hands Vice

President Garret A. Hobart's illness continues to give great alarm to his friends and is the cause of deep regret throughout the nation. The statesman lies in a very critical condition at his New Jersey home in Paterson, the attendant physicians, it is reported, holding out no hope of recovery. The announcement is further made that, whether there is a recovery or not, Mr. Hobart will not return to Washington or continue to fill his high office as President of the Senate. Mr. Hobart's withdrawal from ublic life will doubtless occasion widespread regret, since he has won the esteem and good will of even his political opponents, and been a useful and worthy servant of the State, always actuated by scrupulously correct motives and a high sense of honor.

Death of General It is with unfeigned reGuy V. Henry

gret that we chronicle the death at New York on the 27th of October, after a short illness, of Brigadier-General Guy V. Henry. To the present generation the deceased officer is chiefly known for his participation in Cuba in the events of the war with Spain, and for his brief but admirable administration as GovernorGeneral of Porto Rico. His career as a soldier, however, dates back to the era of the Civil War, in which he served with distinction as an artillery officer and as colonel of the 40th Massachusetts infantry. During the Indian troubles in the 'seventies he saw hard service and did much brilliant and effective work. He was in command of a cavalry regiment which formed part of General Crook's force in the expedition against the Sioux of the Yellowstone country and the Big Horn. Twenty years later he acted as lieutenant-colonel of the Seventh and colonel of the Tenth Cavalry, and was afterwards gazetted a brigadier-general in the regular army and a major-general of volunteers. General Henry was very popular in both the regular and the volunteer

Christmas With the recurring close

of the year, and within a twelvemonth of the hastening end of a century, comes again the social and ecclesiastical festival of Christmas. As the world grows older and gets further away from the Divine event which the season commemorates, Christmas seems to lose much of its once cherished and hallowing associations. The age becomes more and more critical and sceptical, and with the advent of a so-called "scientific school of Biblical criticism religious faith suffers increasing loss and becomes impatient with revealed and even more impatient with dogmatic truth. With the materialism of the time there has also come an increasing indifference, which is perhaps working more havoc in the ranks of belief than was the case in an earlier era of aggressive doubt. And yet this is not the attitude of myriads of intellectual minds that feel the perplexities of the hour, but continue to bow before the unique character of the Founder of Christianity, and admit the sufficingness for every need of the world's great message. Nor is it the attitude of those, still the salt of the earth, who retain their reverence for sacred things, and, themselves feeling the benign influence of Christianity, recognize its power in the world for good. These are they who, impelled by the charity which the Gospel above all virtues commends, open their hearts and hands to the poor and needy at the sacred season of family reunions and home rejoicings. Nor in these days can it be said that there is little need for the ministrations of practical religion, when, if there is not actual want of bread, there are numberless sorrowing hearts to be comforted and an infinitude of yearnings for human sympathy.

[ocr errors][merged small]

I

t is amusing to observe how we democrats » resent the dissemination of our ideas. We have long insisted that we would die for prin

ciples of eternal liberty and equality, and have, indeed, proved our willingness to do so. But now that the foreigners with us are learning their lesson to perfection and refuse to accept the menial positions we offer them — nay, that we insist upon their taking - we are indeed enraged. That our dinners should go uncooked because the Swede maidens marry and have households of their own; that the summons at the door must be answered by ourselves because the colored cook prefers to work “by the day) instead of submitting to our small tyrannies, arouse our indignation. The freedom and equality which we desired for ourselves, but which we never granted to our servants, seem now an impertinent sophistry. Why are not these beings silent before us? Why are they not grateful for our reluctantly doled wage? Why are they not content to stay in the kitchen six nights of the week, gazing upon our pots and pans, and waiting upon our sovereign pleasure ? Because — shame to them! — they have adopted our democratic principles — those principles which we have so dangerously advocated in our drawing-rooms, at our clubs, and in the press. Did they presume to listen,- they, who should have no ears? Were they so inconsiderate as to take us at our word? Alas, it is so! These women have wedded the pleasant policemen who patrolled our streets, the engaging order-clerks who called at the kitchen doors, or the genial barbers who cut the locks of our hopefuls. Some of them have even gone the length of sending us their wedding cards, for are they not as good as anybody and happier than most? Truly. Therefore are our kitchens desolate and our tea-tables unattended.

The famine in servant girls is not confined to any one locality. It exists over the length and breadth of the country, nor has anything like it been known since pioneer days. It is said that it is also causing much inconvenience in Europe, where marriages among the laboring classes are, as they are here, becoming more frequent, and factory or shop work is preferred by the unmarried to the long and monotonous hours required by domestic service.

It is not to be denied that many a kind mistress has been treated with much inconsideration, and that many a pure home has been defiled by the presence within it of workingwomen of foul language and uncleanly house

keeping ways, but still the balance of injustice has been on the other side, and out of the perplexing situation which now confronts us may arise some definite good. The servant girl will be looked upon as a more desirable article than she has been previously, and when she asks, «What sort of room am I to sit in after my work is done?» she will not be shown the undecorated kitchen in which she has worked all day. Moreover, the mistress, in providing better accommodations and extending fairer treatment, will have a right to exact more intelligent service, and perhaps in time she will come to have it. It is impossible to better the condition of the maid without also, eventually, bettering the state of the mistress as well.

Sooner or later, as the inevitable result of the present domestic upheaval, there must be a readjustment of matters, - an increase of wages, a higher standard of work, more conscience upon the part of employers in recommending help, and more honesty upon the part of servants. For now it must be maintained that many of them are dishonest in that they do not satisfactorily perform the tasks for which they have been hired. In short, after we have suffered long enough and experimented sufficiently we shall learn to treat our servants, not as slaves, but as thinking and lovable human beings, - as they are treated in England, for example. Here, being apprehensive, as have been, that at any moment our servingmaids might rise up and assert themselves, imposing their individuality upon us in some way exceedingly disagreeable to our plutocratic sensibilities, we have not learned to rely upon aud to confide in our domestic helpers as the women of England do, nor have we paid them the respect which is paid to the excellent servant class there. True, our helpers have not, as a class, done anything to deserve it. We have, in fact, proceeded upon a mistaken theory, have most inconsistently ignored our own theories, and have made a mess of it. Democratic in principle, we have been the most autocratic mistresses in the world in fact. Ambitious to attain absolute independence for ourselves and an aristocratic leisure, we have endeavored to have all of our household labors performed for us by one or two servants. We have expected everything to run like clockwork while we entertained company, went about as we pleased, and left all to the care of our assistants. It has not succeeded. We have blundered. Let us now, as in the better class of homes in England,

we

provide proper sitting-rooms for our servants, curiosity and alertness, are sorrowful or joyful arrange definitely concerning the duties of each as their circumstances may warrant; and like person employed, faithfully overlook the work us they are baffled and filled with mourning ourselves, pay fair wages, and permit all the when their chosen companions die. We have liberty consistent with justice. Of course been stupid, take us for all in all, in dealing many women have always done these things, with and judging of the animals. and are suffering now because of the selfish- Mrs. Coonley Ward, who is one of the most ness and stupidity of the women who have not; influential women in Chicago, a writer, a clubbut in time better service will come with im- woman, and a sort of universal mother to all proved conditions, and intelligent young who need mothering, a stately hostess, and a women, finding domestic service not too unre- famous traveller, has a winning way with animunerative or confining, will prefer it to the mals. This summer, while she was on the very fatigue of factory work. It must be admitted, quietest part of her vacation, she made herself however, that all of this theorizing is poor com- acquainted with a red squirrel. She did it by fort to the overworked housekeeper who at sitting perfectly still every day in a certain present attempts to be both mistress and maid, place, and becoming, so to speak, a part of the lacking persuasion to induce any one to come to landscape. That she was the most pleasing her assistance. The situation may be said to part of it was evidenced by the demeanor of have reached a crisis.

the squirrel, who came furtively and crept upon

the folds of her gown. After several days of ☆

this intimacy Mrs. Ward ventured to stroke him The enthusiasts in the cause of anti-vivisec- with a finger, and after the first suspicious tion hoped to have an exhibit at the Paris Expo- moment the squirrel concluded that these sition, but it has been barred out as not being caresses were to his liking and submitted to “pleasingly attractive, and also because of its them with sweet unconcern. international character, — «no provision being

There is a certain beautiful and odd little made, for any such combination. It is there- town in Iowa named Tabor, which was founded fore proposed to have a bureau near the Expo- many years ago by good Congregationalists sition, at which lectures will be given, displays from Oberlin, Ohio, who journeyed westward made, and literature distributed. The anti- to establish a church and a school for higher vivisectionists feel, not without reason, that by

education at the frontier. The story of how very many the movement for which they stand they did it, and of how they stood for great is regarded as a fad, and they desire to contro- ideas and afforded shelter to John Brown and vert this idea by showing in a practical and his fugitives, and of how they have always memorable manner the truth about the suffer- consistently proceeded along the lines laid ings unnecessary sufferings, as they claim - down by our Puritan ancestors, is too long to inflicted upon the animals created to be our tell here. But, of all the movements for companions. They wish, also, to exploit the which the men and women of the town fact that the movement is continually growing have stood, none is more quaint and dis, and now has its representatives in almost every

interested than the interpolation among the part of the world. To speak quite frankly upon town ordinances of a forbiddance to kill the this subject, it has often seemed as if Chris- squirrels or the birds. Tabor was a treeless tians, amiable and tender in all other matters, plateau when the devoted pioneers settled upon were criminally neglectful of the interests of it, but the first of their labors was tree-planting, the lower animals. To hunt and kill them has and now the streets are a veritable arbor, so been the delight of many of the men most dis- umbrageous are the trees and so generous tinguished for great qualities. To treat them their sweep. They are alive with birds and always as creatures made for the pleasure of squirrels, and the latter have no more trouble man is the custom of the average Christian, than the former in chasing each other from one and for this view he has of course such war- side of the street to the other, for it is not nerant as can be produced by ancient aphor- cessary for them to do more than find their way isms.

among the interlacing branches. An idyllic While we would not suggest that the regard atmosphere pervades the place in consequence. for animals should degenerate into the igno- When the groups of students sit at twilight rant awe which obtains in the East, yet, casting talking in the shady yards, the squirrels come superstition aside, and putting the relationship down to listen, and to turn upon them a upon purely affectional grounds, there is all friendly regard; and the sylvan chorus of unthat is beautiful in the little Indian child's sa- molested birds lives forever in the memory of lute of: Brother! Brother! » when he calls his those who have Tabor College for their alma kid to his side. Brothers, indeed, are these mater. creatures; created as mysteriously as selves; gifted, like ourselves, – though not in THERE is an idea among the men who stay in equal degree, — with intelligence and the capa- the city to drudge while the women enjoy the city for love; capable, like ourselves, of good or retirement of the country that the summer vabad lives. Like ourselves they are filled with cation is a time of idleness,-at least for those

our

« AnkstesnisTęsti »