[Boston?]: 1840. Broadside, 23-1/2" x 18". Printed in four columns. Old folds, mild wear, Very Good.
This rare broadside printing of the Declaration of Whig Principles, promulgated for the 1840 election, is the paradigmatic expression of Whig political culture. "To understand the Whigs, one must understand how they used language to exhort, persuade, and conciliate; one must also understand how their responses to the problems they faced were affected by their distinctive culture... One occasion will serve to illustrate all of these points. On September 10, 1840, fifty thousand Whigs [they claimed] rallied on Bunker Hill" [Howe]. Daniel Webster is the Declaration's author. [Fletcher Webster, 2 'The Writings and Speeches of Daniel Webster: Private Correspondence', page 597 (Boston: 1903); and 2 The Works of Daniel Webster, pp 41 et seq. (Boston: 1851)].
1840 began the Whigs' prime decade of political influence. A national party, it was, in the Declaration's words, "capable of protecting all parts of the country, securing all interests." But its advocacy of "freedom of speech and of the press" was not mere pablum: Democrats had sought to suppress delivery of anti-slavery mailings into the South. The Democratic Administration of Andrew Jackson is marked by "the insinuations and influences of evil counsellors, or perhaps against his own passions, when moved and excited... Acting under his characteristic love of rule, and uneasiness under opposition," he chose to "enter upon measures which plunged both him and the country into greater and greater difficulties... the final explosion [The Panic of 1837] taking place a few months after his retirement from office." Jackson "trampled down and destroyed... a sound and uniform currency." His successor, Martin Van Buren, concurred in each Jacksonian policy-- truly a "catastrophe." The solution is a return to sound fiscal principles, disinterested patriotism, abandonment of the spoils system, and the election to the presidency of William Henry Harrison.
OCLC 37435347 [3- NYHS, MA Hist. Soc., Peabody Inst.] [as of August 2016]. American Imprints records only the 12-page pamphlet printing. See, Daniel Walker Howe, The Political Culture of the American Whigs', page 2 . Item #33207