Quotations in this study-guide are, in the main, from writings of The Founders of the general period 1750-1800 which are in the public domain and need no permission to quote. This applies also to various additional quotations other than those indicated below. The few exceptions are as follows; and acknowledgment, with thanks, is made of the grant of permission to quote the copyrighted material (page references being to the pages of this study-guide where the quotations involved occur):
Thos. Y. Crowell Co., New York; Flags of the U.S.A., 1959, by
David Eggenberger: "Culpeper Minutemen" flag, page vi
G. P. Putnam's Sons, New York; Bryce book quotation, page 136
Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Mass.; Holmes quotation, page 237
McKinley Publishing Co., Philadelphia, Pa.; Cotwin quotation, p. 236
Little, Brown Co., Boston; Holmes quotation, page 237
Princeton University Press, Princeton, N.J.; Brown book quotation, page 236
The Macmillan Co., New York; quoting Beard p. 346, Dicey p. 136
University of Kentucky Press, Lexington, Ky.; Beale book quotation, pages 345-347
NOTE BY LEXREX: The forementioned quotes will not be used outside of the confines of "The American Ideal of 1776: The Twelve Basic American Principles," in order to respect the permission originally granted by the various publishers to Mr. Long. As stated in our copyright information, we will be happy to make royalty arrangements with any party having an interest in Mr. Long's estate, to enable the continued publication and dissemination of this invaluable work.
Grateful acknowledgment is made of the extensive cooperation of various members of the staffs of the following libraries especially: Library of Congress; New York Public Library; Newberry Library of Chicago; Library of Association of the Bar of the City of N.Y.
Regarding Those Quoted Who Are Not So Well Known As the Former Presidents and Benjamin Franklin and Alexander Hamilton, Concerning Some Main Details of Their Careers
Adams, Samuel; 1722-1803; lawyer, business man, statesman; pre-1776 leader in Boston for "Liberty and Independence," notably as early as 1764 in opposing the Stamp Act; a leader of Mass. legislature 1765-1774, then a member (until 1781) of the Continental Congress, in which he continued to be a leader for "Liberty and Independence;" author and co-author of many famous "Liberty" writings, including documents of the Mass. legislature and Resolutions of Town of Boston; signer of Declaration of Independence; member of Mass. Constitutional Convention 1779-1780 which framed history's first true Constitution; member for years of Mass. Senate and Council; member of Mass. Convention which ratified U.S. Constitution, 1788; Lt. Governor 1789-1793, then Governor until 1797.
Allen, Rev. Thomas; 1743-1810; first clergyman in Pittsfield, Berkshire County, Mass., 1764--served 46 years in that then frontier region; for years prior to 1776 a leader in the fight for Liberty--partly as head of "The Berkshire Constitutionalists" in the forefront of the movement for written Constitutions to safeguard Liberty; always active in town-meetings in this connection, helping to draft and get adopted appropriate resolutions; active as a Chaplain in the Revolutionary forces; typified New England clergy's leadership in working and fighting for "Liberty and Independence."
Barlow, Joel; 1754-1812; poet, teacher and statesman; while a college student, 1776, fought in Battle of Long Island; author of epic poem: "The Vision of Columbus" envisioning a majestic future for America; made U.S. Minister to France by President Monroe.
de Crévecoeur, Michel-Guillaume Jean (pen name: J. Hector St. John); 1735-1813; farmer, traveller, writer; native of France, pioneer to French Canada, 1754; came to New York 1759, travelled extensively in America and, becoming an American citizen in 1765, settled as a farmer in New York and wrote his famous Letters From An American Farmer (1782) under name of J. Hector St. John de Crévecoeur, extolling freedom and life in America.
Dickinson, John; 1732-1808; lawyer, writer and statesman; from time to time member of legislatures of both Delaware (as part of Pa.) and Pennsylvania--also at times President of governments of both Delaware and Pennsylvania; wrote the famous and widely influential "Letters From A Farmer in Pennsylvania" (1767) espousing the cause of American liberties as opposed to British tyranny; member of 1st and 2nd Continental Congresses (did not sign the Declaration of Independence, as being premature); Colonel of first battalion raised in Philadelphia 1775-1776; elected President of Supreme Executive Council of Delaware in 1781 and thereafter held same office in Pennsylvania; in 1787 a member of the Federal Convention which framed the Constitution and one of its signers.
Eliot, Rev. Andrew; 1718-1778; a prominent clergyman in Boston--upheld the Congregational Church in opposition to the Episcopalian Church; in the pre-1776 period a strong supporter of the American cause of "Liberty and Independence;" for example, in Election Sermon on May 29, 1765 (the same day Patrick Henry introduced his famous Resolutions in the Virginia legislature against the Stamp Act) delivered before the Royal Governor and the legislature of Massachusetts, he upheld the right of resistance against usurpers and tyranny.
Ellsworth, Oliver; 1745-1807; lawyer, statesman, judge; member of Continental Congress 1777-1783; member of Governor's Council of Conn., 1780; member of Federal Convention, 1787, which framed the Constitution and in 1788 member of the Conn. Ratifying Convention--writing "Letters of a Landholder" in favor of ratification; member of U.S. Senate 1789-1796; appointed Chief Justice of the U.S., 1796; U.S. Commissioner to France 1799-1800.
Gadsden, Christopher; 1724-1805; merchant, Revolutionary leader, statesman; member of Assembly of S.C. from 1757 onward over a period of 30 years; a leader in pre-1776 period for protection of American rights against British tyranny; member of Stamp Act Congress, 1765--a leader for union of the colonies; member of 1st and 2nd Continental Congress--left latter in Jan. 1776 to become active as Colonel of S.C. forces, after membership in S.C. Provincial Congress advocating American independence in Feb. 1776; Brig. General in Continental Army Sept., 1776; in S.C. Convention which ratified the U.S. Constitution, 1788 and in S.C. Convention, 1790, regarding the State Constitution.
Gerry, Elbridge; 1744-1814; Revolutionary leader and statesman; in pre-1776, a fiery supporter in Mass. of the cause of "Liberty and Independence;" member of Mass. legislature 1772-1773 and thereafter of 1st and 2nd Provincial Congresses of Mass.; member of 2nd Continental Congress 1775-1776 and a signer of the Declaration of Independence; member of the Federal Convention which framed the U.S. Constitution, 1787 but did not sign it, thereafter opposing ratification and wrote "Observations on the New Constitution..." stating his views; elected to Congress 1789; Vice President under President Madison, 1812.
Hancock, John; 1736/7-1793; merchant and statesman; member of Mass. legislature 1769; President Mass. Provincial Congress, 1774-1775; member and President of Continental Congress, 1775-1776, being first signer of the Declaration of Independence; member of Mass. Convention which adopted history's first genuine Constitution, 1780; elected first Governor of Mass. and re-elected intermittently for total of nine terms, dying in office in 1793; in 1788 presided over the Mass. Convention which ratified the U.S. Constitution.
Henry, Patrick; 1736-1799; lawyer, statesman, Revolutionary leader; member of Va. legislature 1765, when he introduced famous Resolutions, and made celebrated address, against Stamp Act; member of 1st Va. Convention and of 1st Continental Congress, 1774; in 2nd Va. Convention, 1775, made his famous "Give me liberty or give me death" address; member of 2nd Continental Congress, 1775, and of 3rd Va. Convention, 1776--helped draft first Va. "Constitution" and declaration favoring Independence, May, 1776; Governor of Va. several terms; opposed ratification of U.S. Constitution--fearing danger of usurpation and abuse of power by Federal government and demanding amendments to limit its power more strictly.
Iredell, James; 1751-1799; lawyer, judge, statesman; active in support of American rights prior to 1776; member of N.C. Council and a supporter of ratification of U.S. Constitution in 1788 N.C. Convention; appointed to U.S. Supreme Court in 1790 where, as early as 1792, he upheld "judicial review"--judges' enforcing the Constitution against violations by other Branches of government.
Jay, John; 1745-1829; judge and statesman; member of 1st and 2nd Continental Congresses, also N.Y. Provincial Congress; chief draftsman of "Constitution" of N.Y., 1776; Chief Justice of N.Y. 1776-1779; member and President of Continental Congress, 1778; Minister to Spain, 1779; member of Commission to negotiate treaty with Great Britain, 1782; in charge of foreign affairs for the Confederation government, 1784-1790; co-author with Madison and Hamilton of The Federalist, 1787-1788, written in support of ratification of the Constitution (he wrote 5 essays on foreign affairs); appointed first Chief Justice of the U.S., 1789; negotiated "Jay's Treaty" with Great Britain in 1794; elected Governor of N.Y. in 1795, served until 1800 and, as such, signed into law the Act abolishing slavery in N.Y.
Lee, Richard Henry; Revolutionary leader and statesman; entered Va. legislature 1758; a leader in opposing Stamp Act, 1764--closely allied with Patrick Henry in fight for "Liberty and Independence;" member 1st and 2nd Continental Congresses, 1774-1776; a leader in Va. Convention, May, 1776 calling for declaration of Independence by Congress--in the latter offering "Independence" Resolution, June 7, 1776; returned to Va. to help form its new government; later member of Congress--its President, 1784--and helped in the adoption, 1787, of Northwest Ordinance; opposed ratification of U.S. Constitution due to fear of usurpation and abuse of power by Federal government--urged amendments to limit its power more strictly and expressed his views in the widely read "Letters From the Federal Farmer;" as a member of U.S. Senate, 1789, helped in framing of first amendments ("Bill of Rights") to the Constitution.
Livingston, William; 1723-1790; lawyer and statesman; a political leader of popular causes in New York State but removed to his N.J. estate after political defeat in N.Y. in 1779; delegate from N.J. to 1st and 2nd Continental Congress; commanded N.J. Militia in 1776; elected first Governor of State of N.J. and served for 14 years; in 1787 was a member of the Federal Convention which framed the Constitution and was a signer.
Marshall, John; 1755-1835; judge and statesman; officer in Revolutionary army--at Valley Forge; member of Va. Bar and then Assembly 1782-1784, again in 1787; member of Va. Convention in 1788 which ratified the U.S. Constitution--stating then that courts would declare void any legislative Act violating the Constitution; U.S. Commissioner to France, 1797; member of Congress 1799; Secretary of State, 1800; appointed Chief Justice of the U.S., 1801 and served until his death.
Mason, George; 1725-1792; judge and statesman; member Va. legislature, 1759 and a leader in the cause of American rights in opposition to British tyranny; author "Fairfax Resolves," 1774; member Va. Convention, 1775 and 1776--when he drafted Va. Declaration of Rights and a good part of Va. "Constitution;" in Va. legislature 1776-1780 and later; active in work leading up to 1787 Convention which framed U.S. Constitution, also as a member; did not sign Constitution and opposed ratification due to fear of inadequate limits on Federal power to prevent its becoming tyrannical; urged addition of "Bill of Rights;" was one of principal slave-owners (including Washington and Jefferson) who deplored existence of slavery and favored abolition, with compensation by government to owners of freed slaves.
Mayhew, Rev. Jonathan; 1720-1776; a leading New England clergyman; served West Church in Boston from 1747 to death; famous, in part, for his 1750 and 1754 Election Sermons espousing American rights--the cause of Liberty and the right and duty to resist tyranny; other famous sermons included "The Snare Broken," 1766. His sermons and writings were a powerful influence in the development of the movement for "Liberty and Independence," exemplifying in exceptional degree the leadership of the New England clergy in this connection.
Morris, Gonverneur; 1752-1816; lawyer and statesman; member of N.Y. Provincial Congress, 1775 and N.Y. Convention in 1776 which framed this State's "Constitution;" member of Continental Congress 1778-1779; assisted Robert Morris 1781-1785 as Superintendent of Finance for the Confederation government; member (from Pa.) of 1787 Convention which framed U.S. Constitution, of which he was a signer; U.S. Minister to France, 1792-1794.
Pinckney, Charles; 1757-1824; member of S.C. legislature, 1779-1780; member of Confederation Congress, 1784-1787; member of 1787 Convention which framed U.S. Constitution and proposed a number of suggestions which were incorporated in it; Governor of S.C. several terms; elected to U.S. Senate, 1798; U.S. Minister to Spain, under President Jefferson.
Otis, James; 1725-1783; lawyer, political writer and early leader, firebrand defender of American Rights in opposition to British tyranny; resigned royal office to fight in court the infamous Writs of Assistance Act in 1761; elected to Mass. legislature, 1761 and a political leader of the Colony until 1769; an organizer of Sons of Liberty--ardent supporters of cause of "Liberty"; wrote his famous "The Rights of the British Colonies--Asserted and Proved," 1764---adopted by Mass. legislature as own document; member of Stamp Act Congress; he and Sam. Adams, as members of Mass. legislature, largely instrumental in drafting many "State Papers" in support of American rights against British tyranny; a head injury in 1771 virtually ended his usefulness.
Parsons, Theophilus; 1750-1813; judge and statesman; a leader in Essex County Convention which opposed 1778 draft of Constitution for Mass.--per its "Essex Result" report, written by him; a leader in 1779 Convention regarding new Mass. Constitution; in 1788 member of Mass. Convention which ratified U.S. Constitution--wrote address of its presiding officer, John Hancock; member of Mass. legislature 1787-1791, also 1805; became Chief Justice of Mass. in 1806.
Rush, Benjamin; 1745-1813; physician, educator, humanitarian, patriot leader, writer; a physician in Philadelphia; Professor of Chemistry, College of Phila.; in 1774 helped organize society favoring abolition of slavery and its president, 1803; member Pa. Provincial Convention, 1776--a leader for Independence; member of Continental Congress, 1776, and a signer of Declaration of Independence; Surgeon General of part of army, 1777; lecturer at Pa. State College, 1778 and helped found Dickinson College, 1783--one of its trustees; member of Pa. Convention which ratified U.S. Constitution--a leader for ratification; in 1789 helped adopt improved State Constitution; a vigorous supporter of prison reform, better education, and other social progress.
Story, Joseph; 1779-1845; law professor, jurist, statesman; member of Mass. legislature, 1805 and in 1811--Speaker of the House; member of Congress 1808-1809; member of U.S. Supreme Court 1811 to his death; simultaneously member of Law Faculty of Harvard University, 1829 to death; author of celebrated Commentaries on the Constitution of the U.S., 1833.
Warren, Joseph; 1741-1775; educator, physician, soldier, patriot leader; in pre-1776 period, extremely active in the cause of "Liberty and Independence" in association with Samuel and John Adams, John Hancock and others in Boston; drafted the famous "Suffolk Resolves" sent to the Continental Congress; engaged in a multitude of public duties; President of Mass. Provincial Congress, 1775; appointed by Continental Congress to be a Major General, 1775; fought and killed at battle of Bunker Hill, June 17, 1775.
West, Rev. Samuel; 1730-1807; served church in Dartmouth, Mass. from 1761 to 1803 (later re-named New Bedford); deciphered for General Washington the treasonous letter of Benjamin Church; delivered Sermon in 1776 before the Mass. Council; a member of a committee which framed the Constitution of Mass.; a member of the Mass. Convention which ratified the U.S. Constitution, 1788.
Williams, Rev. Elisha; 1694-1755; educator, clergyman, soldier, statesman; in 1717 and for 5 sessions member of Conn. legislature; ordained a clergyman 1722 and served Wethersfield church until 1726; then made Rector of Yale College, served for 13 years; member of Conn. legislature 1740-1749; in 1744 wrote "A Seasonable Plea for the Liberty of Conscience and the Right of Private Judgment in Matters of Religion Without any Controul from Human Authority;" also a Colonel of Militia; a delegate to the Albany Congress, 1754.
Wilson, James; 1742-1798; educator, statesman and jurist; arrived in America from Scotland 1765; admitted to the Bar 1767 after study in office of John Dickinson; instructor College of Philadelphia; member of Pa. Provincial Convention, 1774; wrote a widely distributed essay showing why Parliament lacked authority over the American Colonies; member of 2nd Continental Congress, voted for Independence and a signer of Declaration of Independence; also in Congress repeatedly in period 1777-1787; member of the Federal Convention, 1787, which framed the Constitution--of which he was a signer; member of Pa. Ratifying Convention, Oct.-Dec., 1787; became member of U.S. Supreme Court 1789; lectured on law 1790-1791 at College of Philadelphia.
Wise, Rev. John; 1652-1725; a leading churchman and a strong supporter of Liberty; served Congregational church in parish of Ipswich, Mass. from ordination to his death; led fellow townsmen in 1687 in revolt against tax levied by the royal Governor Andros without consent of legislative body--was jailed in the course of the dispute; in 1717 wrote A Vindication of the Government of New England Churches, in which he stressed the main principles to be proclaimed in 1776 in the Declaration of Independence; exemplified the early leadership of the American people by the New England clergy in support of the cause of Liberty.
Witherspoon, Rev. John; 1723-1794; educator, statesman, church leader; came to America from Scotland in 1768 by invitation to be head of Princeton College, then a Presbyterian institution; an outspoken advocate of cause of "Liberty and Independence;" member of the 2nd Continental Congress, 1776, and signed Declaration of Independence; served in Congress until 1782; at Princeton 1782-1794; member of legislature of N.J., 1783, and of 1787 Convention in N.J. which ratified U.S. Constitution; in 1789 became Moderator of first General Assembly of Presbyterian Church.
(General Reference: Dictionary of American Biography)
he Supreme Court's power is limited with regard to interpreting the Constitution--ascertaining and defining the intent with which it was framed and ratified (adopted)
(Author's preliminary comment)
The rule is well-settled that the object of interpretation, or construction, of a provision of the Constitution ". . . is to give effect to the intent of its framers, and of the people in adopting it." Lake County v. Rollins, 130 U.S. 662, 670 (1889). In this opinion, the Court had earlier made it expressly clear that by the phrase, "the people in adopting it," the meaning was "the people who voted it into existence." This referred to the American people's intent expressed through their duly appointed agents--the members of the State Ratifying Conventions--in 1787-1788; or later, with regard to each amendment, in either the State Ratifying Conventions or the State Legislatures, depending upon which method of ratification was used in any particular instance to approve the amendment.
The basic rule of interpretation is clear and has been repeatedly stated by the Supreme Court, for example in South Carolina v. United States, 199 U.S. 437 (1905) at pages 448-449:
"The Constitution is a written instrument. As such its meaning does not alter. That which it meant when adopted it means now. Being a grant of powers to a government its language is general, and as changes come in social and political life it embraces in its grasp all new conditions which are within the scope of the powers in terms conferred. In other words, while the powers granted do not change, they apply from generation to generation to all things to which they are in their nature applicable. This in no manner abridges the fact of its changeless nature and meaning. Those things which are within its grants of power, as those grants were understood when made, are still within them, and those things not within them remain still excluded. As said by Mr. Chief Justice Taney in Dred Scott v. Sandlord, 19 How. 393, 426:
" 'It is not only the same in words, but the same in meaning, and delegates the same powers to the Government, and reserves and secures the same rights and privileges to the citizens; and as long as it continues to exist in its present form, it speaks not only in the same words, but with the same meaning and intent with which it spoke when it came from the hands of its framers, and was voted on and adopted by the people of the United States. Any other rule of construction would abrogate the judicial character of this court, and make it the mere reflex of the popular opinion or passion of the day.'
"It must also be remembered that the framers of the Constitution were not mere visionaries, toying with speculations or theories, but practical men, dealing with the facts of political life as they understood them, putting into form the government they were creating, and prescribing in language clear and intelligible the powers that government was to take. Mr. Chief Justice Marshall, in Gibbons v. Ogden, 9 Wheat. 1, 188, well declared:
" 'As men whose intentions require no concealment, generally employ the words which most directly and aptly express the ideas they intend to convey, the enlightened patriots who framed our Constitution, and the people who adopted it, must be understood to have employed words in their natural sense, and to have intended what they have said.' "
Author's further comment
Immediately preceding the above-quoted statement from the opinion in the 1857 Dred Scott case--60 U.S. (19 Howard) 393 at 426, the Court had in that opinion made further clarifying remarks about negro slaves in explanation of its refusal to violate the intent of the Constitution--the intent of its Framers and Adopters--merely because of changed popular sentiment about slavery. It stated:
"No one, we presume, supposes that any change in public opinion or feeling, in relation to this unfortunate race, in the civilized nations of Europe or in this country, should induce the court to give to the words of the Constitution a more liberal construction in their favor than they were intended to bear when the instrument was framed and adopted. Such an argument would be altogether inadmissible in any tribunal called on to interpret it. If any of its provisions are deemed unjust, there is a mode prescribed in the instrument itself by which it may be amended; but while it remains unaltered, it must be construed now as it was understood at the time of its adoption." (Italics added)
Author's Note: The above-mentioned Dred Scott case concerned the negro slave of that name and this case--in which he sought his freedom---has ever since been famous for political as well as constitutional reasons.
The topic mentioned at pages 237-238, ante: the motive of Dr. Beard in writing his 1913 book (title p. 235)--attacking, in effect, the motives and integrity of The Framers and therefore their handiwork, the Constitution--will be discussed briefly in the light mainly of the posthumous volume of essays about him by some of those who knew him intimately, including educators: Charles A. Beard--An Appraisal, edited by Howard K. Beale and published in 1954 by the University of Kentucky Press. (See also other pertinent writings, especially The Autobiography of James T. Shotwell; 1961, page 43, regarding the strongly Socialistic bias of Dr. Beard and his wife.)
Note first that the extent to which Dr. Beard was Socialistic in his thinking in the period of 1913 helps greatly to explain his hostility to the Constitution and its Framers. This is true because this basic law's limits on the Federal government's power--according to the controlling intent of those who framed and adopted the initial instrument and later each of its amendments, to the present time--were designed to bar from America (unless and until the people should change the Constitution by appropriate amendment) centralized control by government of the national economy, of the basic economic activities of the people of the nation. Such centralized control, also called Collectivism (synonymous with Socialism in its economic aspect especially), is of the essence of the philosophy of Socialism, underlying the philosophy of fully developed Socialism called Communism as advocated, for example, by Karl Marx and by Friedrich Engels, his benefactor, collaborator and co-author with Marx of The Communist Manifesto (1848). The Marx theory of Socialism-Communism, or Communist Socialism, (called Marxism) includes, as one of its main tenets, the idea of economic determinism. This means the economic factor, The Material, controls Man and his development, controls history and the development of social and political institutions. This spells, in effect, Materialism: the atheistic school of thought which denies Man's creation by God, denies the existence of God and puts Man on a par in this respect with things physical, like a clod of dirt.
This is the very antithesis of the basic tenets of the traditional American philosophy expressed in the Declaration of Independence--including the idea of God-given rights--which the Constitution sought to make effective and secure governmentally and was firmly believed in by the Signers of these two documents and their fellow Americans in general: ". . . all men are created . . . endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights . ." (un-alienable because God-given). So to believe is, of course, to reject the godless concept of Materialism; and, by the same token, to believe in the economic determinism of Marxist Socialism is to reject the American philosophy of Man's creation by God and endowment with God-given rights: Natural Rights.
The foregoing highlights the significance, in the 1913 Beard book, of his express espousal in effect of economic determinism (for example, p. 7): "The theory of economic determinism has not been tried out in American history, and until it is tried out, it cannot be found wanting." His repeated references to economic determinism made it evident that, in this book, he was in substance (though not with sufficient candidness, perhaps, to alert the general reader) advocating economic determinism, though perhaps not Marx's full thesis.
It is noteworthy that in his book (p. 6 fn) Beard also cited three books of "Socialist" writers "that deserve study . . ." (quoting his own words). As to another work, E.R.A. Seligman's The Economic Interpretation of History, Beard quotes (from page 3) at his own page 15n:
"The theory of the economic interpretation of history as stated by Professor Seligman seems as nearly axiomatic as any proposition in social science can be . . . [quoting Seligman, in part] . . . 'To economic causes, therefore, must be traced in the last instance those transformations in the structure of society which themselves condition the relations of social classes and the various manifestations of social life.'"
Beard approved; "axiomatic" means self-evident, as a truth.
Beard was introduced to The Communist Manifesto by one of his professors while he was a young student at Depauw University (per article in The American Political Science Review, Dec. 1949, p. 1166) and it is evident that he was greatly and favorably impressed by it, judged by later developments. Of special interest, in this connection, is the statement (Beale book, p. 236-7) by Dr. George S. Counts of Teachers College, Columbia University (retired in 1955)--a long-time associate and close friend of Dr. Beard--that while Beard was in England at the turn of the century he:
"probed deeply into the thought of international revolutionary Socialism and was profoundly influenced by it. Though never a Marxian, after re-reading Marx and Engels in the middle thirties in the German edition of their collected works, he remarked that their total achievement stands over all other comparable efforts in history as a 'mountain stands over the surrounding foothills.' "
Yet in July, 1948, just before his death, Beard told Counts "that he had been mistaken in his general interpretation of Marxist Socialism"--disillusioned by the developments in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics: Soviet Russia. (Counts, in the Beale book, p. 237.)
At the turn of the century, Beard spent several years in England--at first as a student and then as a militant worker for the Socialist-Labor movement. Meanwhile he helped to found Ruskin Hall at Oxford University as a "Labor" school, where he lectured for a time. In this period, Beard--always of a fiery disposition--was a crusader for Socialistic developments in England; as he was later in America, though often more subtly.
One further observation by Counts in his essay (Beale book, p. 250) is of special interest at this point: that Beard was asked in 1941 whether he was satisfied with his 1913 book (the one under consideration here) and he replied in the negative. Counts states (his own emphasis):
"When Beard was asked in 1941 whether he was satisfied with his Economic Interpretation . . . [meaning the 1913 book] . . . he replied at once in the negative. He said that it had been written without sufficient attention to historical perspective. Had he been rewriting it he probably would have emphasized not so much that the framers were not democrats as that they were republicans in a world where republicanism was forward-looking."
(Here "republicans" means advocates of a republic for America. Regarding the comment about "not democrats," note discussion at pages 159-160 of this study-guide.)
How tragic for America that Dr. Beard's recantation--regarding his 1913 book which defamed The Framers--came only after decades of the resulting damage, through teaching and writings, to the minds of American Youth, of educators, of the public and to the cause of Education as well as to sound, constitutional government (as intended by the Framers and Adopters in 1787-1788) which depends, in last analysis, upon public respect for it and indoctrinating the Young accordingly. Moreover, Dr. Beard went to his grave without publicly acknowledging his profound errors.
It is clearly indicative of Beard's motive, in writing his 1913 book, that in his teachings as a Professor at Columbia University in this period he was so militantly and controversially critical of, indeed hostile toward, the Constitution and governmental institutions in America that, according to Counts, Beard was grilled for an hour in 1916 by Columbia's President and a committee of trustees about his fostering disrespect among students toward American institutions; and he was, Counts states: "ordered to warn all other men in his department against teachings 'likely to inculcate disrespect for American institutions.' " (Beale book, p. 243.)
In concluding this brief comment--about Dr. Beard's motives in writing his 1913 book attacking The Framers and the Constitution--in relation to the text of this study-guide (pages 235-239), it merits mention that Dr. Beard's published writings in the period of the 1930's, especially during and after the "Great Depression" of 1929-1932, evidenced unmistakably his strong belief in centralized control by government of the national economy--an essential part of any well-developed system of Socialism--and his hostility to America's traditional system of individual, competitive, private enterprise. His writings in this period especially also evidenced his desire to see America develop governmentally into a Socialistic (Collectivistic) nation, in part through the influence of Socialistic teachings in the schools and colleges.
Yet he was always careful, and skillful enough with words, to cloak his real meaning in euphemisms--the subtly disguised terms designed to make his meaning clear to the knowledgeable but too obscure to the general reader to permit them to get the point; as illustrated by his calculated, consistent use of the term Collectivism instead of Socialism, though meaning in truth a Socialistic system, essentially. (See, for example, with regard to such use of terms by Beard, an article by Professor Franklin Bobbitt of the University of Chicago in "School and Society," August 18, 1934; also an article by the late, celebrated Socialist: Professor Harold J. Laski of the London School of Economics, in "The New Republic," July 29, 1936; and see article by Professor Harry D. Gideonse of the University of Chicago in "The Journal of Political Economy," December, 1935. The Laski article labels as a "blueprint for Socialism" the 1934 volume: recommendations for restructuring schools' curricula, written by Beard for the American Historical Association. The Beale book, of essays about Beard, throws further light on the above points: his Socialist bent.
In conclusion, it needs re-emphasizing that Beard and his 1913 book--his baseless, destructive defamation of The Framers and the Constitution--set a trend in educational and intellectual circles for decades with infinite and continuing harm to the minds of Youth and the people at large and to American governmental institutions--consequently to Posterity's just heritage. The great, harmful and continuing influence of Beard's book, in the educational world especially, is discussed by Professor Douglass Adair in a devastatingly critical article in William and Mary Quarterly (being its Managing Editor) in 1951, v. VIII, p. 48: "The Tenth Federalist Revisited;" in which he exposes Beard's flagrant violations of sound scholarship and historical truth with political motives in his book--indicating also Beard's Socialistic bent.
From The American Ideal...
THE RIGHT TO LIFE
Property must often--reputation must always be purchased:* liberty and life are the gratuitous gifts of heaven.
I shall certainly be excused from adducing any formal arguments to evince, that life, and whatever is necessary for the safety of life, are the natural rights of man. Some things are so difficult; others are so plain, that they cannot be proved.
U.S. Supreme Court Justice James Wilson (Lectures, 1790-1791) * (Meaning reputation must be earned.)
The pretence of an absolute, irresistible, despotic power, existing in every government somewhere, is incompatible with the first principle of natural right. Take for example the right to life. The moment an infant is born, it has a right to the life which it has received from the Creator . . . no human being, no combination of human beings, has the power, I say not the physical, but the moral power, to take a life not so forfeited [by commission of a crime], unless in self-defense or by the laws of war . . . (Emphasis per original.)
John Quincy Adams (Address, July 4, 1831)
THE INDIVIDUAL'S HAPPINESS CONDUCIVE TO THE WELFARE OF OTHERS
The all wise Creator of man imprest certain laws on his nature. A desire of happiness, and of society, are two of those laws. They were not intended to destroy, but to support each other. Man has therefore a right to promote the best union of both, in order to enjoy both in the highest degree. Thus, while this right is properly exercised, desires, that seem selfish, by a happy combination, produce the welfare of others. (Emphasis per original.)
John Dickinson (Political Writings, 1774)
PROGRESSIVE HAPPINESS---SEEKING PERFECTION
A progressive state is necessary to the happiness and perfection of man. Whatever attainments are already reached, attainments still higher should be pursued. Let us, therefore, strive with noble emulation. Let us suppose we have done nothing, while any thing yet remains to be done. Let us, with fervent zeal; press forward, and make unceasing advances in every thing that can support, improve, refine, or embellish society . . . The commencement of our government has been eminently glorious: let our progress in every excellence be proportionably great. It will--- it must be so.
James Wilson (In an oration, July 4, 1788)
That Mankind were intended to be happy, at least that God Almighty gave them power of being so, if they would properly exert the means He has bestowed upon them.
James Iredell (In an Essay, 1775)
SOME TRUTHS ABOUT PUBLIC HAPPINESS
. . . this eternal truth, that public happiness depends on a virtuous and unshaken attachment to a free constitution.
Dr. Joseph Warren (Emphasis per original.) (Oration, Boston, March 5, 1772)
As the happiness of a people and the good order and preservation of civil government essentially depend upon piety, religion, and morality . . .
Massachusetts Bill of Rights, 1780
RIGHT TO HAPPINESS, FREEDOM, PROPERTY
Kings or parliaments could not give the rights essential to happiness . . . We claim them from a higher source--from the King of kings, and Lord of all the earth. They are not annexed to us by parchments and seals. They are created in us by the decrees of Providence . . . It would be an insult on the divine Majesty to say, that he has given or allowed any man or body of men a right to make me miserable. If no man or body of men has such a right, I have a right to be happy. If there can be no happiness without freedom, I have a right to be free. If I cannot enjoy freedom without security of property, I have a right to be thus secured. (Emphasis per original.)
John Dickinson (Reply to a Committee in Barbadoes, 1766)
TRUE BASIS OF HAPPINESS-- TO BE ACHIEVED BY EACH INDIVIDUALMAN'S HAPPINESS IN RELATION TO THE AIM AND FORM OF GOVERNMENT
[Through education of the young in public schools] The first elements of morality too may be instilled in their minds; such as, when further developed as their judgments advance in strength, may teach them how to work out their own greatest happiness, by shewing them that it does not depend on the condition of life in which chance has placed them, but is always the result of a good conscience, good health, occupation, and freedom in all just pursuits.
Thomas Jefferson ("Notes on the State of Virginia," 1782)
MAN'S HAPPINESS IN RELATION TO THE AIM AND FORM OF GOVERNMENT
That government is, or ought to be instituted for the common benefit, protection, and security of the people, nation, or community; of all the various modes and forms of government, that is best which is capable of producing the greatest degree of happiness and safety, and is most effectually secured against the danger of maladministration . . . (Emphasis added.)
Virginia Declaration of Rights, 1776
Our true situation appears to me to be this. --a new extensive Country containing within itself the materials for forming a Government capable of extending to its citizens all the blessings of civil & religious liberty--capable of making them happy at home. This is the great end of Republican Establishments.
Charles Pinckney (In Framing Convention, 1787) (Note: "Republican" means those of a Republic.)
We are therefore brought exactly to the same point at last, whether we consider government as it is originally an appointment of Heaven, or, more immediately, the voluntary choice of men. The security and happiness of all the members composing the political body, must be the design and end thereof, considered in both these lights.
Rev. Jonathan Mayhew (Election Sermon, 1754)
The consequence is, that the happiness of society is the first law of every government. This rule is founded on the law of nature: it must control every political maxim: it must regulate the legislature itself. The people have a right to insist that this rule be observed; and are entitled to demand a moral security that the legislature will observe it. If they have not the first [that right], they are slaves; if they have not the second [that moral security], they are, every moment, exposed to slavery. (Emphasis per original.)
U.S. Supreme Court Justice James Wilson (Lectures, 1790-1791)