Citation Information:“Pennsylvania Hall,” Pennsylvania Freeman, n. 14. 18 July, 1844.
JULY 18, 1844
The Civil War in Philadelphia.
This riotous and bloody city has just completed another terrible tragedy, which will probably beget another and another, till even ruffianism itself shall grow weary and sick of its dreadful deeds, and mobocracy be sated with human carnage.
The immediate cause of these frightful outbreaks is unquestionably to be attributed to the formation of the Native American Party—a party which should be discountenanced by every friend of human brotherhood, which is animated by a spirit hostile to our race, which is anti-republican and tyrannical in its purposes, which makes hatred of one particular class of our fellow countrymen an act of patriotism, and which occupies a position that, sooner or later, it if it be not abandoned, will assuredly spread a civil war throughout the country, and lead to scenes of desolation and horror too awful even for the imagination to contemplate.
In the present instance, the blame is as usual, thrown upon the Irish population; and no doubt they are very much to blame. But, insulted, proscribed and denounced as they are by the party to which we have alluded, is it surprising that they have been goaded to deeds of madness, which, but for the provocation given to them, they never would have committed? However justly, therefore, they deserve to be censured, let the weight of censure rest the most heavily on the party which arrogantly styles itself the Native American party. There will be no safety, no repose, no end to mobocratic excesses, until that party every where be resolved into its orignal elements, and cease to wound the heart and vex the ear of the suffering humanity.
But the primary cause of these sanguinary conflicts finds its root in southern slavery, which fosters the spirit of caste, tramples all law and order under foot, and revels in human blood. It was in Louisiana, among slaveholders, that this native party originated. They were fearful that the warm appeals of Daniel O’Connell and Father Mathew to the Irish in this country, to join with the abolitionists for the overthrow of slavery, and vote for no candidate known to be a slaveholder or an apologist for slavery, would be heartily responded to by them; and therefore they contrived this scheme to exclude them from office and the ballot box. But the Irish have disregarded the noble entreaties of their countrymen at home, and instead of aiding the anti-slavery movement, have basely turned their backs upon it; and verily, they have their reward.
Philadelphia has endeavored (and most successfully) to surpass all other places in murderous opposition to the cause of negro emancipation. To propitiate southern slavemongers, and secure southern trade, she has treated abolitionists as outlaws, broken up their meetings my mobocratic assaults, burnt the dwellings and brutally maltreated the persons of many of her colored inhabitants, given Pennsylvania Hall to the consuming fire, &c. &c; and her reward has been, the loss of seventy million of dollars at the South the blackning of her character with infamy througout the civilized world, incendiary and bloody riots, and fiendish anarchy. Behold how awful, how just, and how swift has been the retribution of Heaven! Alleluia! For the Lord God omniposent reigneth!! Truly, they who sow the wind, shall reap the whirlwind; and what shall be the end of these things!