Washington: Gideon & Co, 1850. Disbound. Good binding. Item #5970
Octavo. 16 pp. Removed from a binding. Spine has been mended with clear archival tape; contemporary owner signature over the title with some bleed-through to subsequent leaves, otherwise, a nice copy of Stanly's controversial pro-Union speech. While known for having volatile temperament in his early political life, he mellowed in time. And while a slave-owner, he was a southern Representative that was not particularly attached to the institution. He was a staunch anti-secessionist and in this controversial speech he presented an evenhanded argument that the North was not wholly hostile to the South in such a way to justify secession, writing, "this Union cannot be, shall not be destroyed. Those whom God hath joined together, no man or set of men can put asunder" (p. 16). While an unpopular opinion in 1850, it was not so unpopular to cost him reelection in 1851. Thomas Jefferey in his entry in the American National Biography summarizes Stanly thus, "Stanly's significance lay in his role as North Carolina's most outspoken Unionist. Although repeatedly denounced by his enemies as a southern man with northern principles, he sincerely believed that the interests of the South could best be protected from within the Union. That he was successful in all but one of his North Carolina campaigns indicates that a majority of his North Carolina constituents--at least until the Civil War--were receptive to that message." ANB; Sabin 90332.