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form indicative of good living; the crown of his head bare, and his hair carefully brushed and powdered. In debate he was slow in speech, but always direct and to the point. During his term as President he was burdened with responsibilities, and on his retirementfrom office had a careworn appearance. As a writer he had few equals, no superiors, among American statesmen. His essays in the Federalist are models of diction, logic, and thought; his correspondence has justly been admired, and his state documents are admirable examples of their kind. At the time of his death he was the last survivor of the signers of the Constitution, of which he was one of the framers. From the ability with which he defended it, and the fidelity with which he adhered to its provisions, he was called the “ Father of the Constitution."
The services performed by James Madison to his country, and his eminent qualities of intellect and patriotism, were fully recognized by the generation which viewed his exit from the stage of action; and many were the evidences chronicled of that fact. From an extended summary of his character and work, in an oration delivered by William H. MacFarland of Virginia upon the occasion of his death, the following pertinent points are taken: It would be no less interesting than calculated to deepen our impressions of his activity and influence, to notice the important agency which he had in the settlement of the numerous subjects which claimed the immediate attention of congress under the new government. Time, however, does not permit. But, as illustrating his great anxiety to redeem the Constitution from just objections by guarding against the danger of perverting or abusing its powers, it should be mentioned that, at the first congress, he introduced and carried a proposition for its amendment, by the addition of several new articles. The proposition was ratified by the legislatures of three-fourths of the states, and thus made a part of the Constitution. A later and yet more memorable instance of similar public service was the resolutions of '98 and the report of '99, known as Madison's resolutions and report. He had been long admired as an author and advocate of the Constitution, but was then to appear in the new character of commentator, and impartially to unfold its meaning and define the limits of the authority of the government. It was at a period of excitement; questions of deep import distracted the public councils and agitated the people; and in the opposing divisions, on either side, were many of those who had assisted in laying the foundations of our civil fabrics. At that critical juncture the public mind of his own state was in a condition of peculiar exacerbation. He was called once more to the legislature, to exert his benign influence in composing popular uneasiness, and to rescue the Constitution from, as was believed, imminent peril. The manner in which he met the occasion and disposed of the grave subject marked a new era in the politics of the country.
Mr. Madison was secretary of state at a period when the diplomatic relations of the government were especially critical and unsettled. And when he was advanced to that higher station, the highest to which his country could elevate him as a pledge of her affection and the proof of her reliance upon his wisdom, the administration of the government was signally arduous and responsible. For his administration it was reserved to commit the government to that last and severest of all trials—war with a nation strong in her resources and proud in her military renown. Looking back upon his long career of public service, as he passed from one high trust to another yet more responsible, what is there wanting to complete his title to be considered as the benefactor of his country? What to secure the fame to which a patriot may aspire, and is a patriot's reward? On what occasion was he unequal to the exigency, and what state exigency did he not encounter? When his career commenced you were without a Constitution; your government without authority; and the times were portentous of instant and fearful disclosures. Aided by his compatriots, he gave you a Constitution, an efficient government and union; and with these he added what, in a peculiar and emphatic sense, was his own—the example of an upright and conscientious functionary. None ever imputed the existence of a selfish or mercenary or factious motive, or complained that he was willful and had disregarded the public interest, or impatient and had mistaken it. The scrupulous regard to the minutest propriety, which was conspicuous in his private relations, was exhibited in all his official acts. Sensible that our institutions have no other foundation than the attachment and confidence of the people, he endeavored to confirm that attachment and confidence by the mild, impartial, conscientious and dignified manner in which he administered the powers with which he was invested.
The last public scene, the speaker continued, in which he appeared, passed in our immediate view. You well remember the venerable appearance of the venerable man. The spirit of earlier days gleaming in his aged bosom, he came up to assist the men of another generation in revising and amending their Constitution. The interest of the occasion derived additional solemnity from the union with him and two others, alike the relics of a former age, memorable for the variety and extent of their public service, and venerable for every virtue and excellence. More than forty years had intervened since they last met in convention. Again they met in convention, for the last time, mutually esteemed and honored by one another. Thus closed the public life of the aged Madison-the end in perfect harmony with the beginning. He had cccupied the highest stations to which a citizen may aspire, and possessed an influence that the personal considera:ion in which he was held carried beyond the limits of official imporiance; but such was his unaffected modesty, he seemed un
conscious of his honors and concerned about nothing but his duties. The example of a high functionary is scarcely less important than his official acts; the errors and aberrations of a private citizen, at most, but disturb the current of public sentiment, whilst those of leading men tend to corrupt the fountain. Madison was conspicuous for grace, propriety and dignity, no less than for clear and thorough comprehension of the complicated and arduous subjects of civil policy, and the ability and energy of his labors. On the various theatres that brought him in connection and often in collision with the first men of the age, than which no age has been illustrated by a greater variety and splendor of endowment, moral and intellectual, he displayed a capacity for public business which always placed him in the first rank, and the adıniration which his talents attracted mingled with respect and esteem for his virtues. It was the disinterested and chastened public spirit, of which his daily life was the witness, that fitted him for the singular success which attended his efforts, and gave him power to prevail over minds preoccupied with opposing opinions. It was impossible to see him without being struck by his modest and unpretending manner, which in a measure concealed his talents and virtues, nor to meet him in private without being cheered and enlightened by his pres
His fame is engraved on the polished pillars that support the noblest fabric which man has constructed, and as often as we admire its beauty, and glory in its being the strength and ornament of our land, we should think of the accomplished and devoted artist, and if we may not aspire to his mental eminence, emulate and practice his virtues. Full of years, time having ratified the beneficence of his plans for the welfare of his fellow-men, he was gathered to his fathers. But he yet survives in the institutions, in the renown, and in the affections of his country. He sought in life no distinction but that which might attend the unremitted devotion of his time and powers to civil and religious freedom. He asked nothing in return but a father's request, accompanied by a father's blessing, that his country would be faithful to her obligations.
REVOLUTIONARY SERVICE-ELECTED TO CONGRESS.
EMARKABLE it is that of the five early Presidents of the United
States four were natives of Virginia, born within a radius of thirty miles, on the strip of land lying between the Potomac and Rappahannock rivers, in the locality, then as now, known as the “northern neck." These four, who became so intimately connected with the events that changed the destinies of the country, and built the greatest republic in the world from the scattered and dependent colonies of Great Britain, were descended from the best blood of England; though brought up in the precept that next to their God stood the king, the inherited spirit that sought freedom of conscience in the wilderness of the new world, in them developed into defiance of oppression and injustice. The first of the Presidents was already grown to man's estate and had entered upon the active duties of life--in the lonely camp of the surveyor, or directing the hastily levied militia of the colony against the savage foe hovering on her border, and incited to acts of violence and deeds of cruelty by an alien power; Jefferson and Madison were engaged in study, the future full of promise, before them, at the time of the birth of one who was to be intimately associated with them in the stirring scenes of war, and the exciting events with the formation of the government.
James Monroe was descended from one of the early and honorable families of Virginia. He was born April 28, 1758, in the county of Westmoreland, Virginia, his father being Spence Monroe, his mother Elizabeth Jones. As was usually the case in the ancient Virginian families, he was
early encouraged to study, and while a mere youth entered the college of William and Mary. His early life was passed in the midst of the stirring scenes that preceded the declaration of independence, the stamp act being passed when he was not six years of age. The conversation of those about him, and the sentiments he heard expressed, aroused in him the same spirit of indignation at the injustice and oppression of the king and ministry that pervaded the minds and hearts of all in the commonwealth, who loved liberty and freedom. It is not strange that the hardships of war had a greater fascination for him than the tame and irksome duties of school, especially when united with devotion to the cause in which the patriots were engaged. Before the age of eighteen he left the quiet college halls and set out for the headquarters of Washington, already in the field, though the declaration of independence was but just made. He was soon commis. sioned lieutenant, and participated in the battles, privations, and defeats of the army during the gloom and despondency of the year 1776; at the bat. tles of the Heights of Harlem, at White Plains, and again at Trenton, he bravely resisted the enemy. In the latter action he received a wound, the scar of which he carried during the remainder of his life. Recovery was rapid, and, returning to his command, he was commissioned captain of in. fantry, and again entered upon active service. His gallantry commended him to his superior officers, and during the campaigns of 1777 and 1778 he was detached an aide to General Lord Stirling. In becoming a staff officer he receded from the line of promotion, and though he distinguished himself on the fields of Brandywine, Germantown, and Monmouth, by conspicuous bravery, he could not attain to higher rank than he then held. Recognizing this fact he sought to regain his standing in the line of promotion, and with this in view endeavored to raise a regiment of troops under the recommendation of General Washington, and by authority of the legislature. That he failed in this undertaking was no fault of his own, the country at that time being well nigh drained of her able-bodied men, who had already taken up arms in defense of their liberties.
Several times he responded to the call for volunteers, in opposing the invasions of the enemy under Arnold, Cornwallis, and Tarleton, on which occasions he rendered efficient service in organizing the raw militia, on which alone the state depended for protection. After the fall of Charleston, in 1780, he was appointed military commissioner in the Carolinas, and was instructed to obtain information as to the force that could be depended upon in an effort to repel the invaders. This called for a journey to the region of country occupied by the contending armies, where he performed the duties required of him to the satisfaction of the governor, by whom he was appointed. Following his retirement from the army, Mr. Monroe entered upon the study of law under direction of Mr. Jefferson, who was then governor of the state. Faithfully he pursued the course of study indi