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disturb the Union, but only to be the means of bringing the agent before the tribunal of the States for their judgment.
Secession belongs to a different class of remedies. It is to be justified upon the basis that the States are sovereign. There was a time when none denied it. I hope the time may come again when a better comprehension of the theory of our Government, and the inalienable rights of the people of the States, will prevent any one from denying that each State is a sovereign, and thus may reclaim the grants which it has made to any agent whomsoever.
In the course of my service here, associated at different times with a great variety of Senators, I see now around me some with whom I have served long; there have been points of collision, but, whatever of offence there has been to me, I leave here. I carry with me no hostile remembrance. Whatever offence I have given which has not been redressed, or for which satisfaction has not been demanded, I have, Senators, in this hour of our parting, to offer you my apology for any pain which, in the heat of the discussion, I have inflicted. I go hence unencumbered by the remembrance of any injury received, and having discharged the duty of making the only reparation in my power for any injury offered.
Mr. President and Senators, having made the announcement which the occasion seemed to me to require, it only remains for me to bid you a final adieu.
EDGAR ALLAN POE.
1809-1849. EDGAR ALLAN POE was born in Boston while his parents were filling a theatrical engagement there. His father's family was of Baltimore, his grandfather being Gen. David
Poe of the Revolutionary War, and his father, also named David Poe, having been born and reared in that city. His mother, whose maiden name was Elizabeth Arnold, was an English actress of fascinating beauty and manners.
Left an orphan in 1811, Edgar was adopted by Mr. John Allan, a wealthy merchant of Richmond, and was educated at private schools and the University of Virginia, and in 1830 he entered West Point. But he got himself dismissed the next year and devoted himself thereafter to a literary life. Mr. Allan declining to aid him further, he had a wretched struggle for existence.
He seems to have gone to Baltimore and made acquaintance with some of his relatives; and there he won a prize of $100 by a story, “MS. Found in a Bottle,” and was kindiy helped by John Pendleton Kennedy. He became editor of the “Southern Literary Messenger,” in Richmond, and was afterward engaged on various other magazines, writing stories, poems, book-reviews, and paragraphs, in untiring abundance.
He married his cousin, Virginia Clemm, in 1836, and their life together was in itself ideally happy, like the life in the Valley of the Many-Coloured Grass ; and Mrs. Clemm, his aunt and mother-in-law, was the good genius who watched over “ her two strange children wearying devotion, deserving the tribute of the love and gratitude embalmed in his sonnet called “Mother.”
His engagement with any one magazine rarely lasted long, and there is much diversity of opinion as to the cause; some ascribing it to Poe's dissipated, irregular habits and irritable temper, others to the meagre support of the magazines, still others to Poe's restless disposition and desire to establish a periodical of his own. His uncontrolled and high-strung nature, so sensitive that a single glass of wine
or swallow of opium caused temporary insanity, the uncertainty of his means of subsistence, his wife's frail health and her death in 1847, were causes sufficient to render unsteady even a more solid character than Poe seems to have possessed.
His writings produced a great sensation. When "The Raven was published in 1845, a friend said of its effect in New York, “ Everybody has been raven-mad about his last poem.” Mrs. Browning wrote that an acquaintance of hers who had a bust of Pallas could not bear to look at it. His fame is as great, or perhaps greater in Europe than in America, especially in France; and his works have been translated into French, German, Italian, Spanish, and Russian.
He died in Baltimore from causes never certainly known, his last almost unconscious days being spent in a hospital ; his dying words were, “ Lord, help my poor soul.” He is buried in Westminster churchyard, and in 1875 a monument was erected over his grave by the teachers of Baltimore, generously aided by Mr. G. W. Childs of Philadelphia. A memorial to him has been placed in the Metropolitan Museum, New York, by the actors of the United States.
No poet has been the subject of more conflicting opinions as to his life, habits, character, and genius, than Poe. The best lives of him are those by John H. Ingram, an Englishman, and George E. Woodberry in the American Men of Letters Series.
Conchologist's First Book (condensed from
Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym.
All his best known stories are highly artistic in finish, powerful in theme, and often of such a nature as to make
one shudder and avoid them. “Israfel” is considered one of his most beautiful poems, and if his self.consciousness could have allowed him to omit the last stanza, it would have been without a flaw.
Helen, thy beauty is to me
Like those Nicean barks of yore,
To his own native shore.
On desperate seas long wont to roam,
Thy Naiad airs have brought me home
Lo! in yon brilliant window-niche
Are Holy Land!
And the angel Israfel, whose heart-strings are a lute, and who has the sweetest voice of all God's creatures.-Koran.
In Heaven a spirit doth dwell
Of his voice, all mute.
While, to listen, the red levin
And they say (the starry choir
But the skies that angel trod,
Therefore, thou art not wrong,
The ecstasies above
Yes, heaven is thine; but this
If I could dwell