Puslapio vaizdai

of the struggle between the forces. of anti-slavery settlers and Southerners who wished to save the territory to slavery. To his office in the Niles Building in Boston came John Brown one day, and of this first meeting Sanborn says: "I was sitting in my office one day in 1857 when Brown entered and handed me a letter from my brother-in-law, George Walker, of Springfield. He had known Brown as a neighbor and a borrower of bank loans while carrying on a large business as a wool dealer He (Brown) was profound in his thinking and had formed his opinions rather by observation than by reading, though well versed in a few books, chiefly the Bible." Sanborn possessed a keen insight which at once aided him in understanding Brown's motives and ideals. Of Brown he further records: "He saw with unusual clearness the mischievous relation to republican institutions of Negro slavery, and made up his fixed mind that it must be abolished not merely, or even mostly, for the relief of the slaves, but for the restoration of the Republic to its original ideal."

Brown was entertained at Sanborn's house in Concord, Massachusetts, during his visits to New England to raise money for the defense of "bleeding Kansas," and Sanborn, though having no knowledge of the old captain's plans, aided indirectly in the plans for the Harper's Ferry raid which lighted the fires of civil war. Indeed, it was the finding on Brown's person of letters written by Sanborn which caused the issuance of a summons for Sanborn to appear before the United States Senate to tell what he knew of the event which ended so disastrously for the captain. A record of this brief but loyal friendship which terminated with the execution of Brown at Charlestown, Virginia, on December 2, 1859, is

made both in his biography and in his "Recollections."

John Brown's heroic figure has taken its place in history, and time has removed him sufficiently from our day to enable us to judge his worth and influence fairly. Contemporary judgment is not usually unbiased but there are those who have the vision to determine aforetime what the estimate of other times will be. This is particularly true in the case of John Brown.


Sanborn's friendship for Brown "led to unexpected and most important results," as he himself has recorded. Those unexpected results were his complicity, indirectly, in the plans for the foray on Harper's Ferry-the event which definitely served notice on the slaveholders that slavery in free territory would be repulsed by conflict; his subsequent summons to Washington, and, later, the order that he be arrested and brought before the United States Senate to tell what he knew of "Brown's treason;" and Sanborn's sensational escape into Canada upon advice of his counsel, John A. Andrew, who later was to become the war governor of Massachusetts.

"I have met many men and women of eminent character and of various genius and talents, among whom Brown stands by himself-an occasion for dispute and blame as well as for praise and song," says Sanborn in his biography of the old captain. "I belong now to a small and fast dwindling band of men and women who fifty, sixty, and seventy years ago resolved that other persons ought to be as free as ourselves. Many of this band made sacrifices for the cause of freedom-the freedom of others, not their own. Some sacrificed their fortunes and their lives. One man, rising above the

rest by a whole head, gave his life, his small fortune, his children, his reputation-all that was naturally dear to him-under conditions which have kept him in memory, while other victims are forgotten or but dimly remembered. John Brown fastened the gaze of the whole world upon his acts and his fate; the speeding years have not lessened the interest of mankind in his life and death; and each succeeding generation inquires what sort of man he truly was .... What more impossible than that a village girl of France should lead the king's army to victory? -unless it were that a sheep farmer and wool merchant of Ohio should foreshow and rehearse the forcible emancipation of four millions of later, and the next year Ellery American slaves?" Channing wrote to Emerson why he had come all the way from Illinois: "I have but one reason for settling in America. It is because you are there. I not only have no preference for any place, but I do not know that I should even be able to settle upon any place if you were not living. I came to Concord attracted by you; because your mind, your talents, your cultivation, are superior to those of any man I know, living or dead. I incline to go where the man is, or where the men are, just as naturally as I should sit by the fire in winter. The men are the fire in this great winter of humanity."

Emerson chose Concord for his home because of its ancestral associations. Thoreau was born there and lived away from the town only for a few weeks at a time. Bronson Alcott went there to live in 1840, Hawthorne took up his residence in the Old Manse two years

In December, 1854, Sanborn was. invited by Emerson to take charge of his children as pupils, and in March of the next year the young Harvard student, not yet finished with his own studies, removed to Concord and opened a school in the village. He welcomed the invitation, for it gave him a means of livelihood and an opportunity to be near the poet-philosopher and to enjoy the company of Thoreau, whom he had met that year in Cambridge. The poet-naturalist

Sanborn believed with Wendell Phillips that the recognition or permission of a wrong is "an agreement with hell;" that a nation, like an individual, cannot hope for enduring greatness if it lose its sense of moral responsibility; and that the claim set up by the slaveholding oligarchy slavery was constitutional must be met with militant defiance, even by conflict if necessary. This was the keynote of his rebellious youth, an index of his character throughout his career. His early beginning as an apostle of freedom, a beginning which was fraught with great personal danger, made him forever a staunch defender of human rights,

Like all men with decided opinions, and unafraid to pronounce them, Sanborn was as thoroughly hated by some as he was sincerely loved by others. He never hesitated to say what he thought, was blunt and brusque at times, and, occasionally, with his peculiar gift of phrase, wielded a scathing satire almost brutal in its frankness. He never, when asked his opinion, concealed his thoughts, never equiv

ocated for expediency's sake; and what we modernly refer to as "calling a bluff" he revelled in. A born agitator, he had no patience with vain pretension, and his condemnation of it cut like a rapier. With Voltaire he could say to an opponent: "I wholly disapprove of what you say and will defend to the death your right to say it."


had just published "Walden," and Sanborn, temporarily editing one of the Harvard magazines, had reviewed the book. Thoreau sought out Sanborn when he next went to Cambridge, but the young reviewer being out when his visitor called, the two did not meet until nearly a year later. From the meeting which took place at Concord came a friendship which lasted. until Thoreau's death in 1862.

The golden age of Concord literary days was, in many respects, from 1878 to 1888, the decade during which the School of Philosophy was held. The school was in some measure a fulfillment of the promise of Transcendentalism, for which Margaret Fuller and Theodore Parker had labored as editors of "The_Dial," the publication which was Emerson's dream of an international magazine. The school became world famous, having at one of its sessions, which were held for four weeks each summer, as many as a hundred students. Although the Concord circle had already. lost Thoreau and Hawthorne, Alcott, Emerson, and Channing took active part in its formation. Emerson's death in 1882 gave the following session of the school over to studies in Emersonian philosophy.

How far reaching have been the influences of the school it is impossible to say, though certainly as a forerunner of university summer schools and the Chautauqua it served to stimulate thought on other subjects than philosophy. Sanborn's leadership in organizing the movement led the other members to choose him secretary of the association.

the others, for the author of "The Scarlet Letter," having received an appointment from his old friend and classmate, President Pierce as consul to Liverpool, had left Concord early in 1853, and did not return until late in June, 1860. Hawthorne knew little about politics and cared less. He took no more than passing interest in the social movements of the day, and the two found little in common.


In his "Recollections" Sanborn tells us that one of his decisions in early life was to do his own thinking. "I saw no reason why," he wrote, "I should take my opinions from the majority or from the cultivated minority-or from any source except my much-considering mind." And he stoutly maintained this resolution to the last. That is why he would neither be gagged by convention nor stampeded into action by popular clamor. He was a liberal in politics and in religion, and his independence made him a detached observer of current events. His semi-weekly letters contributed for nearly half a century to the Springfield Republican were always written with refreshing vigor and were a source of inspiration to that journal's great army of readers interested in politics and letters.

Sanborn as a biographer of his friends flings away all bookish culture and shows the sensitive appreciation with which he noted every utterance, every incident worth remembering, during his years of friendship with the men who made New England the center of American literature. Perhaps more than anyone else he was better fitted for the work. He knew the truth, either from their own lips or from his personal knowledge of events to which he wished to give permanency. From the time of his

The first of Concord's brilliant group to lay down his pen was Thoreau. Two years later (1864) Hawthorne died in Plymouth, New Hampshire. Sanborn knew Haw

thorne less intimately than he did going to Concord he kept an ex

acting account in his journal of all meetings, conversations, and occurrences, and he placed upon these records the stamp of historical accuracy instead of leaving them to be shaped by the mere guesswork of those who were to come after him. Events in which he himself had participated are so closely interrelated to the story he tells that we find it the more interesting for the personal touch, the intimate understanding with which it is told, the authority in which it is clothed. Sanborn made his biographies more than literary reminiscences. He lifted his subjects into the realm. of living memories. Under his touch they are not historical char

acters but people very much alive to one who studies them; not authors who lived and wrote for a reading public a half century ago, but teachers imparting wisdom, apostles bearing the message of a new spiritual philosophy.

Sanborn was blessed with long life and he devoted it to great causes. He was not a great writer but he was a faithful and painstaking taking one. His temperament was essentially that of the biographer, and he became Concord's Boswell. Boswell. Although the fame of his friends transcends his own, he earned a worthy place for his name in the Republic of Letters.


By Walter B. Wolfe

Rosy the snow lies under my ski
And the sun bronzes my face;
Glittering sapphires on the white slope

Dare me to race.

Morning triumphantly rules on the crest;
Sun in the heavens is high;
Only the valleys are dark far below
Where the fogs lie.

There men still sleep in darkness and dreams; Somberly reigns there the night;

Here on the mountain in splendor there glows Celestial light.

Over the chasm! Exultant I course

Swift as the wind, to the west;

Aura of sunlight and streaming white gold
Flung from my crest.

Prometheus am I! And I ski from the heights Down over blinding white snow,

Bearing the torch of Apollo with me

To world below.

By Frances Healey

August 24, 1922 was such a day as belongs to Hampton Falls, misty and overcast, with a hint of rain that did not fall. A warm day, tempered in the afternoon by a fugitive east wind that brought into the Town Hall a breath of the sea, that sea that nearly three hundred years before, bore Stephen Bachiler and his little company from Old England to the New. On this day the town celebrated the two hundredth anniversary of the seperation of Hampton and Hampton Falls, and the folk of the latter town stoutly maintaining that theirs is the parent.

The town has always been proud of her sons. With the sturdy independence that is the inheritance of all New England towns, there has been a liberality of mind, a touch of statemanship in more than one, and these have given the town a certain wideness of vision. They built large, two-story houses on their well-kept farms, and the town has always expressed prosperity and thrift. The population has fluctuated very little, running between five and seven hundred in the past two hundred years. Farms have changed hands, but the owners have worked their land as a means of livelihood, which has meant that Hampton Falls has always been a town of homes, and not of "summer places," and transient visitors.

Among her famous sons was Nathaniel Weare, who was sent to London in 1682 to settle a dispute concerning land titles. His grandson, Meshech Weare, Washington's friend and the first president of New Hampshire, lived here, and his house and the monument on the Common are our most conspicuous landmarks. Frank B. Sanborn, the Sage of Concord, was born and

brought up in the town, one of a large and brilliant family. He and Warren Brown, progressive farmer and politician and author of the excellent History of the town, were own cousins. Here in the quiet beauty of Miss Sarah Abbie Gove's house, John G. Whittier visited and rested, and here he died. Of the next generation, Ralph Adams Cram Cram and his brother, William Everett Cram, have brought honor to the town, and Alice Brown's books have immortalized the country life of forty years ago.

For this celebration, committees had been appointed and money appropriated at the Town Meeting in March. Walter B. Farmer was chairman of the General Committee, which included Mrs. Sarah Curtis Marston, Mrs. Annie Healey Dodge, Mr. George F. Merrill and Dr. Arthur M. Dodge. Invitations were sent to every man and woman who claimed residence or ancestors here. When the day came, nearly every house in town was decorated with flags. The fields were empty, the front doors locked. All had turned toward the Town Hall, where the program was to be given. Automobiles kept coming all day, in the morning for sports and visiting, for renewing old friendships. There were no outsiders. Everyone belonged here and seemed akin to all the rest. Signs urged each one to register. In the lobby, presided over by the Reception Committee, was the book, given to the town by Mrs. Berlin. Page after page was filled, over 700 names in all. Bows of tri-colored ribbon were given, these bows being the tickets of admission to the hall for the afternoon and evening sessions. With the ribbons were the programs designed by Samuel Emmons Brown.

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