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Francis Preston Blair, Jr.
13 pages (2008/1899); 183KB downloadWOWIO Books
; ISBN: WOWIO-00475
Francis Preston Blair, Jr. gave this speech in St. Louis at the dedication of the Thomas H. Benton Statue, an honor from the State of Missouri to the late Senator Benton.
Benton strongly supported westward expansion of the United States; Blair succinctly captured that position and the mood of that part of the nation in the later 1860’s:
Benton “. . . well understood that the West only needed to be left free to work out its own prosperity; that all sections would share in this prosperity and that it most wanted the reversal of those laws by which its strength and energy were trammeled; by which its lands were withheld from cultivation to be sold to speculators; by which its mines were leased by the government without gain to any one; by which the necessaries of life were taxed to pay bounty to some losing trade in another section. All such laws were odious to Benton because repugnant to his democratic convictions; especially odious, because burdensome to the young States of the West: and he resolved to attack and overthrow them.”