Christ's Lutheran Church in 1855

[ Christ's Church on the Sawkill ]

Pastor Thomas Lape, 54, conducting services in the third church building, which, like the second one, was known as the "Church on the Rocks," because it sat on a rocky ledge overlooking the Sawkill (about ¾ mile east of our present location--that is, north of present-day Route 212, across from the country club).

Pastor Lape had earned a reputation as a

clear, methodical preacher … instructive … gentle, amiable, cheerful and faithful pastor; … a humble Christian, and a sincere friend. He stood well among the Lutheran clergy of the State.(1) Anderson, Mark J., For All the Saints: Christ's Lutheran Church, Woodstock, New York, 1806-2006 [Bloomington, IN: AuthorHouse, 2006], draft, quoting the 1879 tribute presented by Rev. P. A. Strobel, of the Hartwick Synod obituary committee. (Close)
We have no description of what it was like in the first or second church building, but here is a reminiscence(2) Quoted from Moseman, Magda, and Anderson, Mark, eds., Perspectives and Patterns: Christ's Lutheran Church, 1806-1976 [Woodstock, NY: self-published monograph, 1976], itself citing Nathaniel M. Nash in 1906. (Close) about what the third was like in the 1850s:
[ The stove in the church ] My memory dates back fifty years, and that old church standing upon the rocks is the same in outward appearance now as it was then. The door in the center of the south end opened directly into the church, there being no vestibule or hall. The stove stood between the door and the first row of seats.… The stove was a solid cast iron stove … it took long wood and when it got hot it was awful hot. The pipe suspended by wire ran the whole length of the church to the chimney at the north end.… The seats were planed pine boards with backs and ends, and I think the hard side of the boards was up. I could not sit still on them. …

The church was lighted with candles, a candlestick on each end post of the pulpit and tin candle holders hanging upon the wall--just enough of them to make darkness visible. Every little while the sexton would go around with the snuffers and snuff the candles and sometimes he would snuff too low when out would go the light.

There was no carpet on the floor.… There was no bell, so when it was time to commence service, someone would come out and tell those outside to come in.…

[ Farm wagon ] It would be a sight worth seeing today to see the vehicle on a Sunday morning that stood about the church grounds with the teams tied to the pine trees.… [F]arm wagons with long boxes on them and boards laid across for seats, and bed quilts for lap coverings in cold weather, the same kind of wagon with wooden springs with seats attached which they put inside the box (which simply emphasized the jolts); the Gondola pleasure wagon which turned up slightly at both ends with no door but with springs under it; and others of various styles. And in the winter the long sleigh, the farm bobs and … you could see any Sunday that there was sleighing … in some neighborhoods one farmer would take his team and long box wagon and gather up all that wanted to go to church and the next Sunday another would take his team and bring them. In this way those not having teams could get to church. How they all enjoyed the ride! Neither do I think they were proud, for many if not all wore the garments spun, woven, dyed and fashioned by their own mother's hands.

The church owned no parsonage. The pastor
lived in rented rooms wherever they could be procured, sometimes several miles away.… [Reverend Lape] lived part of the time in West Camp on [his own place], coming up on Saturday and going back on Sunday afternoon or Monday.…

The Woodstock Region in 1855

To serve the influx of Irish immigrants, the St. John's Catholic Church was built in West Hurley.

Here is an account that appeared three years later in the Rondout Courier about a camp meeting revival that happened in September of this year

on the land of B. Eighmey 4 miles east of Shandaken corner [that is, in Willow.] [No] hucksters were allowed on the grounds [and] all provisions of the legislature act to protect meetings of this kind from disturbances and annoyances, will be strictly enforced.
This was a reference to attempts at curbing by law the unruliness which often marked camp meetings.(3)

Quoted from Evers, Alf, Woodstock: History of an American Town [Woodstock, NY: Overlook Press, 1987], p. 230. (Close)

In the wake of the Anti-Rent War of the early 1840s, a land rush had ensued, with tenants besieging the Livingston brothers and other manorial landlords with offers to buy the farms they had been tilling for generations. In the years following that war and continuing up until about this year, Woodstock-area tenant farmers named Short, Shultis, Hasbrouck, DeWall, Riseley, Ricks, Happy, Lasher, Winne, Duboise, Hogan, Elting, Van de Bogart, and Lewis became fee-simple farm owners. By now, most Woodstock-area farmers owned their own land. Because some tenants could not afford to buy, Livingston agent Henry P. Shultis would be collecting rents for several more years; there were even still a couple of Livingston tenants left in the mid-1880s.

Democrat William M. Cooper, a former tenant on Livingston, an active Anti-Renter, and now owner of the land he tilled, became Woodstock Town Supervisor.

There were 1,806 residents in the Town of Woodstock. The average family was a bit over 5 persons. There were 31 African Americans, 74 first-generation immigrants (mostly from Ireland), and 218 landowners. There were only 50 adults who could neither read nor write and another 16 who could read but not write.

The Ulster County Glass Manufacturing Company, founded two years earlier in Shady (also called Bristol) by a group headed by Kingston lawyer Marius Schoonmaker, on the ruins of (and thereby reviving) the New York Crown and Cylinder Glass Company, which had gone out of business more than a decade earlier, was struggling to stay in business under superintendent Peter Reynolds. According to the census, the company had 32 employees, with its real estate valued at $1,000 ($20,920 in 2006 dollars), with tools and machinery valued at the same amount. The cash value of its raw materials was $7,353 ($153,825) and that of its manufactured articles--the glass on hand--at $13,500 ($282,420). Unfortunately, it was difficult for this factory, originally sited 45 years earlier for its proximity to plenty of wood, to compete effectively with coal-fueled glass factories that were located close to good sources of coal. Besides the original hardwood forests nearby had already been depleted, necessitating either that wood (or coal) be brought in at great expense from an ever-increasing distance or that the furnaces be fired by hemlock or other less efficient fuels.(4)

Excerpted from ibid., p. 130. (Close)

One of Woodstock's only resident doctors was Dr. Stephen L. Heath, whose house still stands just to the east of the old brick post office building on Tinker Street. Dr. Heath was active in politics and was commissioner of schools. He would ride his horse all the way to the end of Mink Hollow to deliver a baby--for a fee of $5.00 ($104.60 in 2006 dollars). A doctor in those days could pull teeth, bleed a sufferer, and lance a boil, as well as other medical duties. There was no hospital available to Woodstockers, but many women were skilled in nursing and midwifery. There were no drug stores, but the remedies most in demand were available at the general store, including opodeldoc, a soap-based liniment; camphor; spirits of hartshorn; castor oil; gum guaicum; syrup of squills; and opium and its derivatives, such as laudanum.

Betsy Booth MacDaniel was a local herb doctor, nurse, and midwife, who had learned her craft from an "Indian doctor" on Tinker Street. She is said to have been able to cure consumption by herbal means.

Kingston steamboat operator Nicholas Elmendorf proposed building a hotel atop Woodstock's Overlook Mountain (formerly called South Peak, and often now called Woodstock Mountain or Woodstock Point), a hotel his backers promised would outshine the famous 32-year-old commodious Catskill Mountain House near Kaaterskill Clove, because of its higher elevation and its more breathtaking views. Unfortunately, Elmendorf was unable to raise the necessary capital to make his dream a reality.

The 9-year-old furniture factory of German immigrant George Fromer in Edwardsville (present-day Hunter) now employed 12 men and 12 women to put cane seats in frames that would later be made into finished chairs; he paid the men $26 per month and the women (who worked at home between household chores) only $6.50 ($544 and $136 per month, respectively, in 2006 dollars). The factory was producing 9,600 chairs per year, with a wholesale value of a modest $7,400 ($155,000).

Painter George Innes, 30, part of the Hudson River School of painting, unveiled his The Lackawanna Valley.

The United States in 1855

[ Franklin Pierce ]

Franklin Pierce, 51 (Democrat), was President. The newly elected 34th Congress was in session. A dollar in that year would be worth $20.92 in 2006 for most consumable products.

The new 34th Congress created the U.S. Court of Claims, whereby citizens could press claims against the federal government without petitioning Congress.

Passengers could now travel by rail from St. Louis or Chicago all the way to the East Coast, at a cost ranging from $20 to $30 ($420 to $625 in 2006 dollars), with the trip taking (with luck) less than 48 hours. (Such a trip took 2 to 3 weeks a couple of decades earlier.)

The first iron steamer of the 15-year-old Cunard Line crossed the Atlantic in 9½ days.

The New York State Immigration Commission leased Castle Garden at the foot of Manhattan to receive immigrants. Some 400,000 arrived there during the course of this year alone.

Thousands of German immigrants came to the United States, at an annual rate of 95,000. The bulk of them were uprooted farmers, displaced by crop failures and other hardships. Some were liberal political refugees, fleeing after the collapse of the democratic revolutions of 1848. Many of the Germans possessed a modest amount of material goods. Most of them pushed out to the lush lands of the Midwest, notably Wisconsin, where they settled and established model farms.

Thousands of Irish immigrants also came to the United States, at an annual rate of 92,000. The luckless immigrants received no red-carpet treatment on their arrival in America.(5)

This description of the Irish immigrant experience liberally quoted from Bailey, Thomas A., Kennedy, David M., and Cohen, Lizabeth, The American Pageant: A History of the Republic, Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1998, pp. 302-05. (Close) With the new transoceanic steamships, the immigrants--Irish, German, and others--could come across speedily, in a matter of 10 or 12 days rather than 10 or 12 weeks. On board they were jammed into unsanitary quarters, thus suffering an appalling death rate from infectious diseases, but the nightmare was more endurable because it was shorter. Liverpool, Le Havre, and Hamburg were the principal points of embarkation; most arrived in the seaports between Boston and Baltimore, and remained in the North. Many arrived penniless, after exhausting their savings on the journey.

Forced to live in squalor, the Irish immigrants were rudely crammed into the already-vile slums. They were scorned by the older American stock, especially "proper" Protestant Bostonians, who regarded the scruffy Catholic arrivals as a social menace. Barely literate "Biddies" (Bridgets) took jobs as kitchen maids. Broad-shouldered "Paddies" (Patricks) were pushed into pick-and-shovel drudgery on canals and railroads, where thousands left their bones as victims of disease and accidental explosions. It was said that an Irishman lay buried under every railroad tie.

As wage-depressing competitors for jobs, the Irish immigrants were hated by native workers. "No Irish Need Apply" was a sign commonly posted at factory gates and was often abbreviated to NINA. The friendless "famine Irish" were forced to fend for themselves. The Ancient Order of Hibernians, a semisecret society founded in Ireland to fight rapacious landlords there, served in America as a benevolent society, aiding the downtrodden. (It also helped later to spawn the "Molly Maguires," a shadowy Irish miners' union that rocked the coal districts of Pennsylvania.) A fortunate few came to own boardinghouses or saloons, where their dispirited countrymen sought solace in the bottle.

The Irish newcomers provided opportunities for political machine bosses in the big cities of the Northeast. The boss's local representatives met each newcomer soon after landing in America. Asking only for votes, the machine supplied coal in wintertime, food, and help with the law. Irish voters soon became a bulwark of the Democratic Party, reliably supporting it in New York City and Boston.

Irish immigrants of the first generation comprised 34% of all voters in New York City. (Also, more than 300 of the city's 1,100 policemen were Irish.)

Anti-immigrant bigots, who had 4 years before organized the Order of the Star-Spangled Banner, called for reforms in the naturalization laws, including a 20-year waiting period before citizenship could be conferred, and the deportation of alien paupers. They also promoted a lurid anti-Catholic literature, and they sometimes incited violence against immigrants. The group's membership was rapidly expanding.

[ Millard Fillmore ] In the summer the nativist American Party, derided by outsiders as the Know-Nothings, held a national convention. Southern members gained control and passed proslavery resolutions. They also nominated former President Millard Fillmore, 55, pictured here, for President in the election the following year.

Meanwhile, the 34th Congress enacted legislation providing that all children born abroad of U.S. citizens could be regarded as citizens themselves.

New Hampshire adopted a prohibition law.

Harvey D. Parker opened the Parker House hotel in Boston, which served à la carte meals at all hours of the day rather than requiring guests to sit down at specific meal times.

Conductor Carl Zerrahn organized the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra.

Massachusetts became the first state to enforce public school integration of all colors, races, and religions.

[ Lucy Stone ] Feminist Lucy Stone, 37, pictured here, married abolitionist Henry B. Blackwell in West Brookfield, MA, with the following statement in their wedding vows modifying the traditional vow of the bride to "love, honor, and obey":

While acknowledging our mutual affection by publicly assuming the relation of husband and wife, yet in justice to ourselves and a great principle, we deem it a duty to declare that this act on our part implies no sanction of, nor promise of voluntary obedience to such of the present laws of marriage, as refuse to recognize the wife as an independent, rational being, while they confer upon the husband an injurious and unnatural superiority.(6) Quoted in ibid., p. 340; Zinn, Howard, A People's History of the United States, 1492-Present, New York: HarperCollins, 1980, 1995, 1999; Perennial, 2003, p. 119. (Close)
She was one of the first to refuse to give up her surname after marriage and insisted on being referred to as "Mrs. Stone." She also refused to pay taxes because she was not being represented in the government; officials took all of her household goods, including her baby's cradle, in payment.

New England factories using steam-powered machinery required laborers to work long hours for low wages. Owners hired entire families, often by means of a contract to work for an entire year, with the family liable to be fired even if one family member broke the contract. Workers typically lived in dark, dingy houses in the shadow of the factory. At 4 a.m., when the first whistle blew, father, mother, and children dressed in the dark and trudged off to work. The whistle would announce short meal breaks at 7:30 and noon, and the workday was announced by the whistle at 7:30 p.m.

Few factories had windows or heating systems, and the machines had no safety devices. Injured workers often lost their jobs. The owners customarily treated these laborers as they would machines. A visitor to a textile mill in Fall River, MA, asked the owner how he treated his workers; here was the harsh but honest answer:

I regard people just as I regard my machinery. So long as they can do my work for what I choose to pay them, I keep them, getting out of them all I can.(7) Quoted in Davidson, James West, and Stoff, Michael B., The American Nation, Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1986, 1995, p. 382. (Close)
Injured workers often lost their jobs.

Manufacturers in Massachusetts turned out $300 million ($6.3 billion in 2006 dollars) worth of products, a 230% increase in 10 years.

The population of New York City was 630,000. There were 10,384 WCs and 1,361 set bathtubs in the city.

Riding academies were established in Boston and New York City to help women adjust to sidesaddle riding.

A New York City poultry dealer received a shipment of 18,000 passenger pigeons within a single day.

Surgeon James Sims established Women's Hospital in New York City.

German immigrant Samuel Liebmann opened a brewery in Brooklyn, NY, and began producing Reingold beer.

Physician Abraham Gesner, formerly of Canada but now living in Newtown Creek on Long Island, coined the word kerosene (from the Greek keros for "wax") for the coal oil he had learned to distill from petroleum 3 years earlier. Even though a Boston pharmaceutical firm had discovered that kerosene could not only be a lubricant but could also burn in lamps, particularly in the improved lamp chimney that had been devised by German immigrant inventor Christopher Dorflinger, Gesner promoted kerosene only as a patent medicine, since there was as yet no efficient way to burn it in lamps.

The Oneida "Perfectionist Community" of farmers and mechanics in central New York State, founded in 1848 by New England clergyman John Humphrey Noyes, 44, sawmill owner Jonathan Burt, and farmer Joseph Ackley, continued to thrive, with hundreds of converts living in communal buildings made of timber from the community's farms. The community practiced free love ("complex marriage"), birth control (through "male continence," or coitus reservatus), and the eugenic selection of parents to produce superior offspring. Men and women were treated equally, and all classes of work were viewed as equally honorable. Noyes called his system "Bible Communism." Children were reared in the "children's house," operated by men and women considered best qualified.

During this year, the evangelical American Tract Society was able to dispose of more than 12 million of its various publications. Its hundreds of missionary salesmen, known as "colporteurs," wandered over the countryside preaching the Gospel and selling (or giving away) religious tracts that avoided denominational controversies. The titles included Quench Not the Spirit (hundreds of thousands of copies distributed) and The Way to Heaven.

The Elmira Female College was founded in Elmira, NY, the first institution to grant academic degrees to women.

Engineer John Augustus Roebling, 48, after resolving a financial dispute with civil engineer Charles Ellet, Jr., 45, completed his 821-foot single-span railroad suspension bridge at Niagara Falls. A 368-ton train crossed it, the first train to do so.

An accident near Burlington, NJ, on the Camden and Amboy Railroad killed 21 and injured 75.

Fairmount Water Works was built in Philadelphia, the basis for a huge public park.

Pennsylvania State University was founded.

Pennsylvania coal mine operator Asa Packer, 50, commissioned the construction of the Lehigh Valley Railroad, between Easton and Mauch Chunk.

Pennsylvania businessman Samuel M. Kier, 42, who had been selling bottled petroleum as a patent medicine for the preceding 8 years, built the first oil refinery in Pittsburgh. Meanwhile, George Henry Bissell, 34, and Johathan Eveleth established the Pennsylvania Rock Oil Company, to exploit the petroleum deposits in Pennsylvania--the first major oil business in the country.

Delaware adopted a prohibition law.

A mine explosion in Coalfield, VA, killed 55 people.

Berea College was founded in Berea, KY.

Virginia was still an important producer of tobacco, although states west of the Appalachians raised more than half of the total U.S. crop--especially the Bright Yellow variety, which grew best on poor soil. The tobacco-growing states of Maryland, Virginia, and North Carolina were concentrating more and more on diversified farming--corn, wheat, vegetables, fruits, and livestock. Cotton growing had been migrating ever westward, more and more of it was being grown west of the Mississippi River.

Churches were divided on the slavery question. Methodist, Presbyterian, and Baptist denominations separated into two independent bodies, North and South.

The 1850 Fugitive Slave Act was "tested" by many incidents: Black prisoners were delivered from jails by white mobs. Many slaves were recaptured, and some free Negroes were carried off into slavery. Pulpits and newspapers denounced the law, there were meetings of protest, and many of the Northern states in effect set about to nullify the law by simply refusing to comply with it. For example, the Massachusetts legislature passed a law defiantly titled "An Act to Protect the Rights and Liberties of the People of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts," calling for the removal of any state official who aided in the return of runaway slaves. Other states had "personal liberty laws" denying local jails to federal officials and otherwise hampering enforcement.

During the preceding year, Wisconsin abolitionist editor and leader Sherman Miller Booth, now 43, had helped to rescue black fugitive slave Joshua Glover in Milwaukee and had therefore been arrested for violating the Fugitive Slave Law. Booth had appealed to the Wisconsin Supreme Court for a writ of habeas corpus, stating that he had been restrained of his liberty by U.S. marshal Stephen V. R. Ableman and that his imprisonment had been illegal because the 1850 Fugitive Slave Law was unconstitutional and void. A justice had initially ruled that Booth be freed, but Ableman had applied for a certiorari; in the resulting case Ableman v. Booth, the court had ultimately ruled the Fugitive Slave Law unconstitutional, freeing Booth, and assessing costs against Ableman. But Marshal Ableman took the suit to federal court: In January of this year, the U.S. District Court in Wisconsin in a grand jury proceeding indicted Booth on the original charge. Convicted by a jury, Booth was sentenced for 1 month and was fined $1,000 ($20,920 in 2006 dollars) plus costs. Booth again appealed to the Wisconsin Supreme Court on the grounds that the Fugitive Slave Law was unconstitutional and that the federal court had no jurisdiction to try or punish him. Again the state court freed Booth. In April, however, U.S. Attorney General Caleb Cushing, 55, petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court (the emaciated Chief Justice Roger Brooke Taney, 78, from the slave state of Maryland, presiding), arguing that the state court had no jurisdiction. The case would drag on over the ensuing 4 years.

[ Harriet Tubman ] Of course, the Underground Railroad, which for years had smuggled slaves over the border into Canada, increased its activities. Slaves who had the courage to strike for freedom would take cover in woods or swamps near their master's plantation until the hue and cry was over, then follow the North Star to the free states. The most dangerous part of the escape route was in the South itself, where slaves helped one another. Harriet Tubman, 35, pictured here, an illiterate field hand, not only escaped herself, but returned many times and, as an Underground Railroad "conductor," guided scores of slaves from bondage to freedom, taking some as far as Canada. (There was a $40,000 reward [$840,000 in 2006 dollars], offered for her capture.) During this year, Tubman led 11 slaves, including her brothers Robert, ben, and Henry, to freedom. According to historian Fergus Bordewich(8),

From Bordewich, Fergus M., Bound for Canaan: The Epic Story of the Underground Railroad, America's First Civil Rights Movement Amistad/Harper-Collins, 2006, reviewed in Almanac Weekly (supplement to the Woodstock Times), 22 February 2007, pp. 1-3. (Close) the journey
began as an archetypal escape in the middle of the night, with slaves sneaking out of their plantation quarters in Maryland and traveling overland through Wilmington, Delaware.… They spent five days traveling in rural Maryland, which was very dangerous. With the help of the Underground Railroad, they rested for two days in Philadelphia and then went on to New York City, where they took a train from Grand Central Station to Albany.

In the Northern states, fugitives were transferred from one abolitionist or free Negro household to another, sometimes driven in a [Quaker's] carriage, disguised in women's clothes and wearing a deep Quaker bonnet.

Historian Paul Wellman has described the mutual hostility between the South and the North at the brink of the Civil War(9):

The following is from Wellman, Paul I., The House Divides: The Age of Jackson and Lincoln, from the War of 1812 to the Civil War, Garden City, NY: Doubleday & Company, 1966, pp. 428-29. (Close)
Advocacy of slave revolts in the South by some irresponsible extremists in the North touched upon a very real danger. Furthermore, the South faced severe economic problems which the North little considered. It was keyed to slave labor, but this could be changed.… [Much] of the South's capital was invested in slaves. Coercion and insult were motives for resistance, but complete financial prostration was an even greater cause.

In the cotton fields of the Deep South, slaves brought several hundred dollars per head more than in the Upper South; the urge to sell slaves "down the river," therefore, remained strong. Slave trading was a thriving business. There were some 50 dealers in Charleston, 200 in New Orleans, most of them very prosperous and thus now considered quite respectable in high society. John Armfield and Isaac Franklin were the most successful dealers, collecting slaves at their "model jail" in Alexandria, VA, and shipping them either by sea or land to their huge depot in Natchez, MS.

Though laws of the United States and almost every Western nation declared the African slave trade to be piracy, a capital offense, the laws against it were not enforced, at least not by the United States. British war ships attempting to suppress the trade were forbidden to search vessels, American or otherwise, that raised the U.S. flag, that "proud banner of freedom." Conversely, any American slaver had only to raise a foreign flag to evade search by the U.S. Navy, whose four vessels designated for "suppressing the slave trade" were in any event far slower than most of the slavers. The Navy Department warned its officers that they would be held personally liable for damages if they made any mistakes--such as cases being dismissed for "want of evidence" (chains and fetters on board apparently not considered evidence). As a result, tens of thousands of fresh Africans, "black ivory," were imported each year by Brazil, Cuba, and the United States; in fact, the number was now greater than it had been half a century earlier, when the trade had been legal. Many of the slave ships had been fitted out in New York City and other Northern states, where the profits from the trade ended up. Every Northern seaport (as well as New Orleans, Mobile, and Charleston) took part.

[ Charles Sumner ] [ Stephen Douglas ]

The hostility between proslavery and antislavery Americans caused a continuous cacophony in Congress, where legislators exchanged insults and threats, tossing about the epithet "liar" with ease. The House of Representatives was so torn by factions that a Speaker could not be elected for 2 angry months. Particularly divisive was the situation in Kansas Territory, whether slavery was going to be legal there or not. Prominent among the angry legislators was the tall and imposing, highly educated but cold and humorless Senator Charles Sumner, 44, pictured left, of Massachusetts, a fervent abolitionist, whose reputation as an egotistical fanatic and, more to the point, his poisonous tirades against any who dared disagree with him caused his colleagues in the Senate to avoid him and deny him committee appointments, even to hate him, referring to him as a "filthy reptile" and a "leper." One of his favorite targets was the champion of "popular sovereignty," Illinois Senator Stephen Arnold "Little Giant" Douglas, 42, pictured right.

The new Republican Party, formed just the year before, was becoming a catch-all for every discontented group of citizens, drawing into its ranks Free-Soilers, antislavery Democrats, Know-Nothings, abolitionists, and many leading Whigs.

[ Abraham Lincoln ] The 6-foot-4-inch-tall, 180-pound, narrow-chested, stoop-shouldered melancholic Abraham Lincoln, 46, pictured left, had resigned his seat in the Illinois state legislature so that he could run for the U.S. Senate, hoping to be elected by a rough coalition in the legislature of 59 "anti-Nebraska" men (those opposed to the Kansas-Nebraska Act and the "popular sovereignty" promoted by the Senator Douglas, whose term was not up for election), a coalition consisting of Whigs, Democrats who did not support Douglas, a few Free Soilers, some Know Nothings, and even a few Republicans.

The "regular" Democrats (those supporting Douglas and popular sovereignty) were planning to field the noncontroversial Governor Joel Aldrich Matteson, 49, as their candidate, to replace the Democratic incumbent, Senator James Shields, 49. Lincoln's wife, Mary Todd Lincoln, 37, who very much wanted the title "Mrs. Senator," was in the legislature's gallery with her long-time friend Julia Jayne Trumbull, wife of another Senate candidate, Lyman Trumbull, 42, an "anti-Nebraska" Democrat whom the "regulars" would not support. After an early lead in the repeated voting, Lincoln realized that he could not win, so he threw his support behind Trumbull, who was thus elected to the Senate. Lincoln was philosophical about his loss, but his disappointed wife stopped speaking with Mrs. Trumbull.

Lincoln wrote the following to a friend:

I think I am a whig, but others say there are no whigs, and that I am an abolitionist… [yet] I now do no more than oppose the extension of slavery. I am not a Know-nothing. That is certain. How could I be? How can anyone who abhors the oppression of negroes, be in favor of degrading classes of white people? Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." Now we practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes." When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretense of loving liberty--to Russia, for example, where despotism can be taken pure, without the base alloy of hypocracy [sic].(10) Quoted in ibid., pp. 366-67. (Close)

[ Ralph Waldo Emerson ] Transcendentalist philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson, 52, proposed before the Anti-Slavery Society of New York, that slavery be extinguished by a grant of full compensation to the owners, which he estimated to cost $2 billion ($41.9 billion in 2006 dollars), to be paid by the federal government from the proceeds of public lands and paid by others as well(11):

Quoted in Morison, Samuel Eliot, The Oxford History of the American People, New York: Oxford University Press, 1965, p. 592. (Close)
The churches will melt their plate, [wealthy benefactors could donate, schoolchildren could give their pennies] …, every man in the land would give a week's work to dig away this accursed mountain of sorrow once and forever out of the world.
This proposal went nowhere, however. The South was unwilling to give up slavery, and the North was unwilling to pay them to do it.

Most of the Northerners who went into the new Kansas Territory were ordinary pioneers in search of richer farmland. But a small part of the influx was made up of abolitionist Free-Soilers. The New England Emigrant Aid Company continued to send antislavery men, termed "Jayhawkers," to colonize Kansas Territory, thereby alarming slaveowners in Missouri, who were just as determined to colonize Kansas with proslavery men, termed "Kickapoo Rangers" or "Doniphan Tigers." A Lafayette County (Missouri) proslavery men passed the following resolution:

Societies were formed [and] money contributed… for the purpose of buying up, and sending to the territory of Kansas… a set of deluded, ignorant, and vicious tools of knavish abolitionists.… Such as would be thus brought up… would be a wicked, debased and abandoned class, dragged forth from the dens of filthy, misery and crime of the Northern cities.
Kansas was holding an election to choose a territorial legislature, and proslavery and antislavery factions were each determined to prevail. Missouri Senator David Atchison declared that
there are 1,100 men coming over from Platte County to vote, and if that ain't enough, we can send 5,000--enough to kill every Goddamned abolitionist in the Territory.(12) Quoted from Bailey et al., op. cit., pp. 422. (Close)
About 5,000 Missouri proslavery "border ruffians" crossed the border in March, armed with guns and carrying flags, with fifes and drums playing a spirited march. An observer described election day in one Kansas district(13): Quoted from Davidson and Stoff, op. cit., p. 436. (Close)
On the morning of the election, before the polls were opened, some 300 or 400 Missourians and others were collected in the yard… where the election was to be held, armed with bowie-knives, revolvers, and clubs. They said they came to vote, and whip the… Yankees, and would vote without being sworn. Some said they had come to have a fight, and wanted one.
Voting early and often, the border ruffians elected a proslavery legislature, chose Shawnee Mission as the territorial capital, and declared slavery legal. They passed draconian proslavery laws--one authorizing the death penalty for helping a slave escape and another that made any speech against slavery a crime punishable by 2 years of hard labor. Here is Senator Atchison's summary boast(14): Quoted from Morison, op. cit., p. 591. (Close)
We had at least 7,000 men in the Territory on the day of the election, and one-third of them will remain there. The proslavery ticket prevailed everywhere. Now let the Southern men come on with their slaves.… We are playing for a mighty stake; if we win, we carry slavery to the Pacific Ocean.

Free Soil voters countered by electing an extra-legal legislature of their own, with Topeka as the capital; they outlawed slavery and elected Dr. Charles Robinson, 37, as Governor. Antislavery men in Lawrence, Kansas, converted the Free State Hotel there into a fortress, with thick masonry walls, loopholes for guns, and embrasures for cannon. Rifles were shipped from the East in quantity, in boxes that were marked "Books" or "Revised Statutes" or "Hardware" or "Bibles." Abolitionist Henry Ward Beecher, 42, brother of novelist Harriet Beecher Stowe, preached a sermon calling upon "friends of freedom" to supply the antislavery Kansas settlers with Sharps rifles.

One Sharps rifle will have more moral influence upon slaveholders than a hundred Bibles!
The Sharps rifle was thereafter referred to as a "Beecher's Bible."

[ John Brown ] Abolitionist John Brown, 55, pictured here, followed five of his sons to Kansas to take up claims. He came in a wagon loaded with arms, ammunition, and supplies.

The idea of bringing slaves into Kansas was silly at any rate. The slaveowners had a lot of money invested in their human "property" and would not want to take them where bullets were flying (and where the popular sovereignty vote might go against slavery). One wit commented that the entire quarrel over slavery in the territories was about "an imaginary Negro in an impossible place."

Meanwhile, Nebraska Territory adopted a prohibition law.

South Bend, IN, Scots immigrant James Oliver, 32, invented a steel plow with a remarkably smooth and nonbrittle working surface.

Indiana and Michigan each adopted a prohibition law.

Michigan State University was founded in East Lansing, MI.

Engineer Charles T. Harvey, with capital from St. Johnsbury, VT, New York State, and Chicago, completed the Sault St. Marie ("Soo") River Ship Canal between Lake Superior and Lake Huron, enabling large ships to navigate all the Great Lakes and giving Chicago access to northern Michigan's vast iron-ore deposits The Cleveland Iron Mining Comany, started by Samuel Livingston Mather, 38, shipped the first load of ore through the canal.

Engineers dredged the stinking Chicago River and began to create a landfill there.

Chicago had a population of about 80,000.

Cleveland publisher Joseph Mcdill, 32, took control of the 8-year-old Chicago Tribune.

After years of struggle, legislature representatives from the northern part of Illinois were finally able to overcome the opposition of the river counties and get a statewide public school law passed.

George W. Vinton joined John Deere, 50, in marketing agricultural implements, including Deere's lightweight steel-moldboard plows, which could be pulled by a horse rather than by a team of slow-moving oxen.

Steel plows, which could easily break through prairie sod, as well as extended penetration by railroads, were rapidly changing the landscape of the Midwest; where less than a decade earlier there had been few farms, there now were increasing numbers of prairie farmers.

The price of wheat was $2.50 a bushel ($52.50 a bushel in 2006 dollars), a nearly threefold increase in only 4 years.

Some 16 million bushels of U.S. wheat were exported to Europe, a 250-percent increase in just 2 years. American growers were taking advantage of the absence of Russian wheat in Europe, due to the Crimean War.

Brewer Frederick Miller bought the 3-year-old Best Brothers brewery in Milwaukee, WI.

The wife of German immigrant Carl Schurz established the first kindergarten in the U.S. in Watertown, WI, using the German language, for children of other immigrants.

In response to an offer of $50,000 ($1.05 million in 2006 dollars) if the 8-year-old Chicago & Rock Island Railroad could be made to extend to Iowa City by December 3, workers with ropes dragged the locomotive the final the final thousand feet in -30° weather.

Prussian immigrant Christian Metz, 61. who had for the preceding 12 years been leading a communal society in Buffalo, NY, modeled on the Community of True Inspiration he had started 38 years earlier, now founded the Amana community in Iowa.

Iowa adopted a prohibition law.

The 34th Congress commissioned James Eddy and Hiram Alden to construct a telegraph line between the Mississippi River and the Pacific Coast.

Many of the full-blood Cherokees in Indian Territory (present-day Oklahoma) belonged to a secret society known as Kee-too-wah (the "Pins"), so named because each member wore two common pins in the form of a cross on the coat or hunting shirt. Its purpose was to encourage the retention of the old tribal customs and to prevent their taking up the ways of the whites. Few of the full-bloods owned slaves, and the Kee-too-wah was usually opposed to slavery. Nonetheless, many Cherokees did own slaves.

Brigham Young, 54, continued to develop the State of Deseret (Utah Territory, as it was known by the federal government and other non-Mormons), considered by its residents as an independent nation with Young as President, extending, according to the Mormons (and disregarding the arrangement that Congress had worked out in 1850), from the Great Salt Lake down to southern California (encompassing most of present-day Arizona, all of Nevada, and parts of California, New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, Idaho, and Oregon, as well as all of Utah). Young's Salt Lake City had adobe brick buildings, avenues wide enough for a wagon and four oxen to make a U-turn, an ornate temple, and the first major irrigation project ever undertaken by American whites, irrigation that enabled the settlers to raise crops and herds on the desert. Other well-planned towns were springing up.

[ Brigham Young ] Thousands of Young's Church of the Latter Day Saints (Mormon) followers, from different parts of the world, obeyed without question the commands of Young, pictured here. They paid a tenth of all they acquired into the coffers of the church. Young made polygamy part of the Mormon doctrine (he himself had some 27 wives and begat 56 children during his lifetime). From his spacious and rich "Lion House" mansion in Salt Lake City, Young, acting in what he was convinced were the best interests of his people, brooked no opposition from his followers, or from anyone else, and he was unscrupulous to that end. He condoned, if not actually ordered, many murders, and he warped justice in the courts. He was determined to resist the rule of the United States government. Young and his followers made emigrant travel to the Pacific Coast difficult and sometimes dangerous, since the Territory of Deseret lay right athwart the Overland Trail. Discipline in the church was maintained by a more or less secret body of men known as Danites (or "Destroying Angels"). Those disobeying church laws, especially "apostates," were sometimes murdered by these agents. Emigrants passing through Mormon country were frequently robbed and their livestock stolen.

Young was suspected of involvement in the 1849 murder by Ute Indians (Mormon allies) of surveyor John Williams Gunnison, who had exposed the Mormon practices of polygamy and blood atonement. Walkara ("Walker"), Chief of the Utes in Deseret, who had been the instruments in Gunnison's death, died and was buried according to Ute custom: Two whimpering Paiute child slaves were caged alive above his grave and were left to starve to death.

The year-old U.S. Mint branch in San Francisco continued to pay miners the official rate of $16 per ounce ($335 per ounce in 2006 dollars) for gold and continued to produce millions of dollars worth of gold coins.

U.S. commodity prices were still soaring as a result of the California gold discoveries. Workers were striking for higher wages, but all the wage hikes could not keep up with the rising cost of living. The times were characterized by extravagance and wild speculation. Money by the millions of dollars that should have been used for legitimate investment was instead devoted to dubious schemes for sudden wealth. Much of the capital was put into new railroads into areas where there were as yet no settlers, so there was no revenue generated from freight. When dividends did not accrue, some railroad stocks would begin a decline--especially the stocks of some of the Western lines. At the same time, land speculation had been attracting funds far exceeding their value. New territories and parts of some of the Western states that were not yet populated were covered with "paper cities," and the credulous were invited to "invest" at fabulous prices.

Hundreds of Chinese immigrants were fleeing the disintegrating Chinese Empire, risking the penalty of beheading to do so, almost all from the southern district of Toishan, and coming to the United States, at an annual rate during this decade of 4,140, many of them gold seekers sailing into San Francisco, which they named "golden mountain." Some came with money pooled by their families back home, but most were desperately poor and in debt to Chinese middlemen. Most were men (the ratio was 19 males for each female).

Cayuse War

Hostilities had continued between white settlers and the Cayuse tribe in eastern Washington Territory, ostensibly to avenge the 1847 massacre at the Whitman Waiilatpu mission in the Walla Walla Valley, even after the hanging 5 years earlier of the supposed perpetrators. Finally, the Cayuse numbers were reduced and most of their tribal lands were confiscated. The surviving Cayuse were placed on the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation with the Umatilla and Walla Walla peoples. Cayuse territories were now open to white settlement.

Women of fashion wore crinolines, hoop skirts extended by whalebone and spring hoops sometimes out to 18 feet in circumference. Many people despised them because they took up so much room, especially in crowded stagecoaches and omnibuses. They also contributed to numerous accidents:

… that monstrosity the crinoline, which once came near costing me my life.… I was showing a lady an engraving of Mr. Cobden which he had just given me and which hung over the fireplace. Somehow or other my voluminous skirt caught fire and in an instant I was in a blaze, but I kept my presence of mind, and rolling myself in the hearth rug by some means or other eventually put out the flames. None of the ladies present could of course come to assist me for their enormous crinolines rendered them almost completely impotent to deal with fire.(15) McCutcheon, Marc, Everyday Life in the 1800s: A Guide for Writers, Students & Historians, Cincinnati, OH: Writer's Digest Books, 1993, p. 112, citing the reminiscences of Lady Dorothy Neville. (Close)

Science and technology in America: Specifics

Texas inventor Gail Borden, 54, patented his condensed milk, which contained sugar to inhibit bacterial growth; English immigrant inventor David Edward Hughes, 24, patented his teleprinter (printing telegraph); James Francis, 40, the "Father of Modern Hydraulic Engineering," published Lowell Hydraulic Experiments; Massachusetts physician John C. Dalton, 30, operated on living animals to demonstrate for his students internal physiology and anatomy; astronomer Benjamin Peirce, 46, published Physical and Celestial Mechanics; and Virginia oceanographer Commander Matthew Fontaine Maury, USN, 49, of Virginia published the foundational The Physical Geography of the Sea, which helped navigators cut down the time and increase the safety of ocean voyages.

Arts and culture in America: Specifics

Boston scholar Thomas Bullfinch, 59, published The Age of Fable (afterward known as "Bullfinch's Mythology); Boston publisher John Bartlett, 35, published Familiar Quotations; William Hickling Prescott, 59, completely blind, published The History of the Reign of Philip II; poet Walt Whitman, 36, who had been editor of the Brooklyn Eagle, anonymously published Leaves of Grass, including "There Was a Child Went Forth," "I Sing the Body Electric," and "Song of Myself," to mixed reviews and poor sales; Evert A. Duyckinck and George Duyckinck published the exhaustive 2-volume Cyclopaedia of American Literature; and Massachusetts novelist and poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, 48, published The Song of Hiawatha.

Novelist Nathaniel Hawthorne, 51, complained bitterly to his publisher about the success of women writers:

America is now wholly given over to a d--d mob of scribbling women, and I should have no chance of success while the public taste is occupied with their trash.
The "trash" consisted of the short story, with its flexible, innovative form and its responsiveness to scene, dialect, and regional and class conflicts, which often dealt with the commonplace and even the shockingly unpleasant.

English immigrant Frank Leslie, 34, who had changed his name from Henry Carter and had worked as an engraver for the Illustrated London News and as a poster artist for Phineas T. Barnum, began publishing Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper. Other popular periodicals included the Niles' Weekly Register, the American Journal of Science, American Farmer, Christian Watchman, Saturday Evening Post, National Preacher, Godey's Lady's Book, Ladies' Repository, Peterson's Ladies' National Magazine, Home Journal, Boys' and Girls' Magazine and Fireside Companion, Harper's Monthly Magazine, Yale Literary Magazine, Knickerbocker Magazine, Spirit of the Times, National Police Gazette, and Scientific American.

The song "Listen to the Mockingbird" by Philadelphia barber-composer Richard Milburn, with lyrics by Septimus Winner writing under his mother's maiden name, Alice Hawthorne, was released and became popular. The song "Come Where My Love Lies Dreaming," by Stephen Collins Foster, 28, was also released and became popular. Other popular songs included "Old Folks at Home" (also by Foster), "Old Dog Tray" (also by Foster), "Massa's in de Cold Cold Ground" (also by Foster), "Jeannie with the Light Brown Hair" (also by Foster), "Camptown Races" (also by Foster), "Oh! Susanna" (also by Foster), "Jim Crack Corn" (also known as "Blue Tail Fly"), "Buffalo Gals," "Old Dan Tucker," "Turkey in the Straw," and "Amazing Grace."

The Christy Minstrels of showman Edwin Pearce Christy, 40, continued their long engagement at Mechanic's Hall on Broadway in New York City. Here is a description of a typical minstrel show by historian Samuel Eliot Morison(16):

Morison, op. cit., pp. 495-96. (Close)
In the first act the performers, most of them white men in blackface, sat in a semicircle around the interlocutor, a dignified colored gentleman in dress suit who acted both as master of ceremonies and butt for the jokes of the end men--"Mistah Tambo" who banged a tambourine, and "Mistah Bones" who rattled castanets. Besides repartee and horseplay, the cast played banjo melodies and sang comic or sentimental songs. The second act, known as the olio, included a "hoe-down" dance, comic parodies of grand opera, and a "walk-around," in which the players one by one took the center of the stage for individual songs or dances while the rest clapped time to the music.

The World at Large in 1855

Hart Almerrin Massey took over operations at the farm-equipment factory his father had started 6 years earlier, the Newcastle Foundry and Machine Manufactory at Bond Head on Lake Ontario in Upper Canada.

At last Mexican dictator Antonio López de Santa Anna, 61, was forced to resign. The liberales (liberals) formed a provisional government under Juan Álvarez, inaugurating the period known as La Reforma, which enacted reform laws sponsored by the puro (pure) wing of the liberales that curtailed the power of the Catholic church and the military, while trying to create a modern civil society and capitalist economy on the North American model. Benito Pablo Juárez García, 49, a Zapotec Indian who had fled Mexico under Santa Anna, now returned and was able to get the Ley Juárez (Juárez's Law) passed, which abolished special clerical and military privileges and declared all citizens equal before the law.

The government of Mexico granted to the United States a right of way over the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, even though the route across it was too long for a canal.

Aggressive, "fire-eating" Southerners, including some in the cabinet of President Pierce, were determined to be compensated for the closing of the Mexican Cession to slavery by acquiring more distant slave territory through imperialistic Manifest Destiny adventures at the expense of Latin America.

Nicaragua adventure

Nicaragua--rich in valuable mahogany and Brazilwood; in gold, silver, copper, and lead; in cacao, sugar, cotton, indigo, tobacco, grains, and fruit; in cattle and other livestock; and also in beautiful women outnumbering men at a 3:2 ratio--was being torn apart by yet another one of its incessant civil wars (which had been killing off the men). Grenada was the capital of the Legitimists, backed by the wealthy mining and estate owners who controlled the country's money; León was the capital of the Democratists, supposedly representing the poor and downcast.

Freebooter filibusterer William Walker, 31, the "Gray-Eyed Man of Destiny," received backing and funding from banker Cornelius K. Garrison to seize turbulent Nicaragua, ostensibly in support of the Democratists. Garrison was determined to wrest control of the Accessory Transit Corporation, the company founded by the piratical-minded, foghorn-voiced shipping magnate Cornelius "Commodore" Vanderbilt, 61, to transport California-bound Argonauts (Forty-Niners) across the Isthmus. (Garrison and his partner, ship owner Charles Morgan, had already taken control of the company before, but Vanderbilt had been able to get it back.)

Walker took a band of about 60 adventurers from San Francisco on the brig Vesta to "liberate" the Nicaraguan people (and return Accessory Transit to Garrison and Morgan) in a "crusade against tyranny" and a "holy war for liberty." These Californians were also interested in generous land grants and in those beautiful women. They landed at León, received from the Democratists there the nickname La Falange Americana, and were joined by about 200 Nicaraguan rebel soldiers. His forces attempted to capture the town of Rivas but were repulsed by a force of some 500 Legitimists; the Nicaraguan rebels fled. Walker and his handful of Californians held back overwhelming numbers of Legitimists, losing only 10 killed and wounded compared with 150 Legitimist casualties, until he could get back aboard the Vesta and retreat to León.

Meanwhile, tensions were building between the U.S. and the United Kingdom over the treatment of U.S. Ambassador to Central America Solon Borland, who had been hit on the head the preceding year in a political brawl in the British-controlled port of Greytown, on the eastern coast of Nicaragua (in the part the British named Mosquitia, a British satellite protectorate of the Moskito Indians). PU.S. President Pierce sent the war ship USS Cyane to the scene to demand an apology. When no apology was forthcoming, the captain gave the townspeople time to get away and then bombarded the port to smithereens. The British government demanded reparations, which also were not forthcoming. The press in London blustered and threatened war, but the British government and military were then too busy with the Crimean War to do anything about it.

The Panama Railway was completed with American capital.

British Foreign Secretary Henry J. Temple Viscount Palmerston, 70, became Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.

The Daily Telegraph began publication in London, in response to the repeal of the Stamp Act. Other publications followed, changing from weekly distribution to daily.

The Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA) was founded in London in order to improve the condition of working women by providing good food and a decent place to live.

In response to a new cholera outbreak, London's sewer system was modernized.

Arthur Hill Hassall published Food and Its Adulterations: Comprising the Reports of the Analytical Sanitary Commission of "The Lancet" documenting the presence of trace amounts of arsenic, copper, lead, and mercury in all but the most expensive of British tea, coffee, pepper, butter, bread, and beer. Producers Crosse & Blackwell responded with an announcement that it had stopped coppering its pickles and fruits and that it would no longer use bole armenian to color sauces.

The English firm of Smith and Phillips introduced a domestic gas oven priced at £25. (At that time, cooking fuel, including wood and coal, was so expensive that Britions prepared hot meals only two or three times a week.)

Alexis Soyer, chef at the Reform Club of London, demonstrated a military cookstove that could prepare food for a battalion with only 47 pounds of wood, less than 3 percent of the usual amount. Soyer also published A Shilling Cookery for the People, selling 248,000 copies and containing recipes for boiled neck of mutton, sheep's head, and other delightful delicacies.

The Paris International Exposition (or "World Fair") displayed French technological and economic progress.

French sociologist Pierre Guillaume Frédéric le Play, 49, published Les Ouvriers européens on working-class incomes.

Paris merchants Chauchard and Heriot opened the Louvre as a dry-goods store, serving the carriage trade with 3-year-old Bon Marché retailing principles (right of return or exchange, and so on).

Pedro de Alcantara, 18, assumed full power as King Pedro V of Portugal, with his father no longer serving as regent.

Russian authorities sentenced anarchist Mikhail Aleksandrovich Bakunin, 41, to eastern Siberia for his revolutionary activities.

Crimean War

Russian Tsar Nicholas I, 58, the "Iron Tsar," remarked at the beginning of the year that "Generals January and February" would be his best allies against the British and French invasion forces in the Crimean Peninsula, and, indeed, not only the killing winter but the raging typhus epidemic that had begun the previous year took alarming toll on the invaders, who had entered the besieged Sebastopol, which had capitulated. British orator John Bright noted in his February speech to the House of Commons that
[the] Angel of Death has been abroad throughout the land.
He urged withdrawal of British troops from Sebastopol and that they evacuate the Crimea. But Tsar Nicholas died in March and was succeeded by his son. Aleksandr II, 36, who opened peace negotiations.

A telegraph line was completed to link London with Balaclava in the Crimea.

English nurse Florence Nightingale, 35, continued to treat wounded and sick British soldiers. Continuing epidemics of typhus and cholera killed more troops than battle wounds or episodes of food poisoning. English physician Edmund Alexander Parkes, 35, served as superintendent of a civil hospital in the Dardanelles and there pioneered the science of modern hygiene.

Meanwhile, the Premier of Sardinia, Count Camillo Benso di Cavour, 45, entered the conflict on the side of the Allies (the Ottoman Empire, the United Kingdom, and France); his 10,000-man Piedmontese force tipped the balance in the Allies' favor in the Battle of Chermaia. French troops under General Marie Edme Patrice Maurice de Mac-Mahon, 47, kept up their determined assault in the trenches before the fortress of Malakhov. The general exclaimed:

J'y suis, j'y reste ("Here I am and here I stay").
His troops captured Malakhov, and the Russians were forced to abandon Sebastopol, sinking their ships and blowing up their forts.

The war had expanded into Persia, whose leader, Nasir Ud-den, had designs on Herat in Afghanistan and wished to exploit the preoccupations of the Crimean belligerants. The British concluded the Treaty of Peshawar with Afghan Emir Dost Muhammad, 62, against Persian aggression. Meanwhile, Russian forces captured the Ottoman outpost of Kars in eastern Anatolia and completed their 5-year conquest of the Syr Darya Valley (the ancient Jaxartes, in present-day southern Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, draining into the Aral Sea).

Austria threatened to officially join the Allies if Russia refused to accept the peace terms proffered to it.

British explorer Richard Francis Burton, 34, published the travel book Pilgrimage to Mecca.

British diplomat Harry Smith Parke, 27, negotiated a commercial treaty with King Rama IV (Phra Chom Klao Mongkut), 51, of Siam, giving the United Kingdom the right to establish consuls and to trade throughout the kingdom.

T'ai P'ing Rebellion

Kwangsi Province mystic Hung Hsiu-ch'uan, 43, proclaiming himself the younger brother of Jesus Christ as well as the T'in-wang ("Heavenly Prince," effectively the Emperor of China) of the so-called T'ai P'ing ("Great Peace") dynasty, continued his rebellion, 5 years old so far, against the government of China's Manchu dynasty. Because imperial troops had withdrawn from Anhuei, North Kiangsu, and Shantung provinces in order to cope with the T'ai P'ing rebels, bandits there under the name Nien Fei continued their campaign of plunder, now 2 years old.

Japanese Shogun Tokugawa Iesada, 31 (mistakenly called "tycoon" by Western foreigners), concluded a commercial treaty with Russia and another treaty with the Netherlands.

French promoter (engineer and diplomat) Ferdinand de Lesseps, 50, who had earlier worked with Cornelius Vanderbilt in Nicaragua on a possible canal project there, now obtained a concession from France to build the Suez Canal.

Ethiopian chief Ras Kassa, 37, deposed Ras Ali of Gondar and then conquered Tigre, Gojjam, and Shoa. He proclaimed himself King of Kings as the Emperor Theodore. Englishmen Walter Plowden and John Bell helped him but down rebellions.

Scots explorer and missionary David Livingstone, 42, on his way north from Capetown discovered Victoria Falls on the Zambezi River.

Some 33,000 Chinese immigrated into the British colony of Victoria in Australia, swelling the Chinese population there to 333,000, a 450-percent increase after the discovery of gold in New South Wales 4 years earlier. The legislature responded to the influx by restricting Chinese immigration and imposing a £10 poll tax on each Chinese immigrant.

New South Wales changed from a 5-foot-3-inch rail gauge to on of 4 feet 8.5 inches, throwing rail transport in Australia into confusion. For "economy," South Australia, West Australia, and Queensland adopted a gauge of 3 feet 6 inches.

World science and technology

English chemist Alexander Parkes, 42, developed (and patented) celluloid from guncotton and camphor; Austrian engineer Franz Köller developed tungsten steel; French chemist Henri Etienne Sainte-Claire Deville, 36, developed a commercially feasible method for extracting aluminum from ore; English physician Thomas Addison, 62, described pernicious anemia; and Swiss chemist George Audemars received a patent in England for producing "artificial silk" (rayon).

World philosophy and religion

Danish philosopher Søren Aabye Kierkegaard died at the age of 42.

English philosopher Herbert Spencer, 35, published Principles of Psychology, developing a doctrine of evolution applied to sociology. Scots philosopher Alexander Bain, 37, published The Senses and the Intellect.

Arts and culture in the British Isles

English photographer Roger Fenton shot scenes of the Crimean War using the 4-year-old slow wet collodion process and published his pictures as wood engravings in the Illustrated London News; poet Robert Browning, 43, published Men and Women, whose "Andrea del Sarto" included the line
A man's reach should exceed his grasp.
English novelist Anthony Trollope, 40, postal inspector in Ireland for the preceding 14 years, published The Warden; novelist Elizabeth Cleghorn Stevenson Gaskell, 45, published North and South; clergyman-novelist Charles Kingsley, 36, the rector of Eversley in Hampshire, published Westward Ho! about South American landscape that he had never seen; explorer Richard Francis Burton, 34, published Personal Narrative about the pilgrimage he had made 2 years earlier to Mecca disguised as a Pathan; poet Alfred Lord Tennyson, 46, published his romantic Maud; and novelist Charles (John Huffman) Dickens, 43, published Little Dorrit, criticizing debtor's prison among other social injustices. Novelist Charlotte Brontë died at the age of 39.

World arts and culture

German composer Johannes Brahms, 22, produced Trio in B major at Dodsworth's Hall in New York City, with William Mason, 26, at the pianoforte; Hungarian composer Franz Liszt, 44, produced Prometheus (Symphonic Poem No. 5) at Braunschweig and produced, and performed, Concerto No. 1 for Pianoforte and Orchestra in E flat minor at the Grand Ducal Palace in Weimar, with French composer Hector Berlioz, 52, conducting; Berlioz himself produced "Te Deum" in Paris, which he had composed 6 years earlier; and Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi, 42, produced the opera I Vespri Siciliana ("The Sicilian Vespers") at the Paris Opéra. German Romantic composer Richard Wagner, 42, conducted a series of orchestral concerts in London.

Swiss art historian Jakob Burckhardt, 37, published Cicerone; French painter Rosa (Marie Rosalie) Bonheur, 33, unveiled The Horse Fair; and French painter (Jean Desiré) Gustave Courbet, 36, unveiled Interior of the Studio: A Real Allegory Summing up Seven Years of My Life as an Artist and, at the Paris World Fair, Pavillon du Réalisme. French painter Jean Baptiste Isabey died at the age of 88.

German dramatist and novelist Gustav Freytag, 39, published Soll und Haben; French writer Alexandre Dumas fils, 31, published Le Demi-monde; and Russian novelist Ivan Turgenev, 37, published the deeply psychological A Month in the Country. Polish poet Adam Bernard Mickiewicz died at the age of 57.


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