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sion of free trade to the whole world. But while they were faithful to the great sacrifice, elsewhere it was disregarded. Their isolated constancy was unavailing, and they proposed the importation of every dutied article except tea; thus, by this reservation, to save the principle. The towns which latest had adopted the non-importation agreement and first had violated it, rejected the proposal. The Sons of Liberty in New York uttered threats towards the merchants, but the impoverished city could no longer hold out. Orders were given for full cargoes of all they wanted except teas; and the voluntary resistance seemed at an end. Philadelphia and Boston soon followed the example. This was the time for conciliation. But to the king, who felt not, amid his royalties, the advancing spirit of the age, resistance to oppression was an enigma only to be solved by the sword, and thus the solution was to come. At the moment when the relinquishment of the commercial opposition was known at St. James, an order appeared making Boston the rendezvous of the armed vessels stationed in North America, and directing its fortress, Castle William, to be occupied by the king's troops. Massachusetts was not yet prepared to meet this breach of her charter and insulting parade of power. On the eleventh of December,” the New York assembly was again convened, Lord Dunmore having opened the new seals as governor. Two days after, upon a warrant of the speaker, McDougall appeared at the bar of the House. Being asked if he was the author of the “libellous” address, he answered, that he had been arrested, indicted, and held to bail, under the order of the assembly, and his trial had been delayed. “Who were his accusers?” De Noyelles demanded a categorical reply to the question. Attempting to state his position, McDougall was threatened to be committed for contempt. George Clinton interposed. McDougall waived an answer, for the reason that, being under trial for the imputed offence, there was no precedent for the procedure of the House. The loyal member again demanded an answer, threatening him with the infliction of “peine forte et dure.” Clinton again interposed, but in vain. McDougall was required to ask pardon. His spirit was too firm to be intimidated by this brutal threat. The stout patriot answered: “Rather than resign the rights and privileges of a British subject, I would suffer my right hand to be cut off at the bar of the House. I will not ask pardon, for I have not committed any crime.” He was remanded to the jail, whence he again set forth his wrongs to the people. A writ of habeas corpus was granted. The House directed the judges to take notice that he was imprisoned under their warrant, and that the sheriff must detain him. Warm debates arose. No record of the decision remains, but ere long McDougall was at large. All was now quiet in this province. But to insure, if necessary, an unquestioning obedience, Dunmore * with loaded pockets was transferred to Virginia, and Tryon with loaded arms, and laurels still bloody, won in unequal battle with his fellow-subjects in North Carolina, was received by the now abject councils of New York with welcome greetings. In January seventy-two, its assembly again met, and the emission bill having been approved by the crown, again voted a supply to the troops. The colony felt that England had placed it in charge of an unscrupulous, heartless tyrant, and trembled before his presence. No public voice of reprobation was any longer heard. In the dark, discontented looks of the people there was a boding; but it is a significant fact, that from the time of McDougall's liberation, excepting as to a renewed proposal of an American episcopate, the press of this colony was silent. It was during this sullen calm, that Hamilton, a youth, departing from the West Indies, arrived on the shore of this great continent, at the very moment, pictured as the future “asylum of freedom.””
* “The Western World,” Burke wrote, “was the seat of freedom until another more western was discovered, and that other will probably be its asylum when it is limited down in every other part. Happy is it that the worst of times may have one refuge still left for humanity!”—Annual Register, 1772.
NEvis, one of a cluster of the Antilles, was his birthplace. This small island, which rises like a cone from the ocean to a great height, is supposed to have been so called by Columbus, from its resemblance in form and its volcanic discharges to an elevation in Spain, known as the mountain of “Snows.” Watered with salubrious springs and rivulets from its base to its summit, it presents in its successive acclivities the luxuriance of the tropics and the growths of the temperate zone. First occupied by the English, the little colony never passed from their sway, and, owing to the paternal cares of its earliest governor, was a model of virtue, order and piety.” This beautiful spot was the quiet abode of Hamilton's infancy. His father was a native of Scotland, who looked back upon his ancestry with pride, tracing his lineage in a direct line to Bernard, a near kinsman of Rollo, the first duke of Normandy, and progenitor of William the Conqueror. Of the proud and warlike family of Hamilton, conspicuous throughout the history of Scotland and England, he was of the CAMBUSKEITH branch, the head of which was Walter, son of the first Sir David de Hamilton, Lord of Cadyow.” His grandfather, Alexander Hamilton of Grange, the fourteenth in descent, married, about seventeen hundred and thirty, Elizabeth, eldest daughter of Sir Robert Pollock, and had a numerous issue, of whom James, his fourth son, was the father of the American Hamilton. With a just value of the advantages of birth, and a proper disregard of family pretensions, he wrote to a near friend, “Thus my blood is as good as that of those who plume themselves upon their ancestry.” His father being bred a merchant, and the West Indies opening a field to enterprise, he left Scotland for St. Christopher's, where, though at first successful, through a too generous, easy temper, he failed in business, and was, during the greater part of his life, in reduced circumstances. On his mother's side, Hamilton's descent was French. His maternal grandfather, whose name was Faucette, was a Huguenot, a race to which America owes many of her most illustrious sons, who, in different climes, proved how warmly they had cherished the virtuous and determined spirit of their exiled forefathers. In the general expatriation of his Protestant countrymen which followed the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, he settled in Nevis, where he practised medicine. He was a man of letters and polished manners. Hamilton was the offspring of a second marriage. His mother's first husband was a Dane, named Lavine, who, attracted by her beauty, and recommended to her
* History of West Indies, by Thomas Coke, LL.D. Histoire Philosophique et Politique des etablisemens et du commerce des Europeans dans les deux Indes.—Par Raynal, vii. 376.