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Plans trip to Europe. Enlists Chase's aid in raising money for both secular and ecclesiastical reasons. Reports his speech on anniversary of Bible Society.






letter, McIlvaine, Chase, travel, Europe


New York May 13, 1864

My dear Mr. Chase

God be praised for His mighty arm, with terrible conflict before Richmond. What desperation on one side, what determination on the other. One can hardly think of any thing [else]. But about my going to Europe. I have written Bp. [Brunwell], I will go if reasonable expenses shall be provided. I have been talking with the Rev. Dr. [Dyer[, our best manager of such things, + who will take an active interest in it. He was for several years Principal of our Grammar School at Kenyon College, + is now an influential man here. He suggests the following. First, that according to your idea you write to Mr. [Aspinwell] + Jay Corke exposing yourself as you will best know how but also that you write to him (the Rev. H. Dyer [?] Bible House N.Y.) saying about as much as the following, [?] that on other account [?]

ecclesiastical you think the matter important to be accomplished. Dr. Dyer wants that, as he says, because while acting in a perfectly private way, + I with very few parsons, he can get the help of persons who know some + have confidence but in the same consideration of the Church aspect of the matter. Might not be ready to [??] who would be influenced very much by such a line from you. Receving that + you also writing Mr. [Aspinwell], he would [concert] something with him.

I shall be here till Friday of next week, + perhaps you had better enclose such a line under cover of me.

If it seems that the thing can be done I propose taking Wash. on the way here, + seeing what we can engineer about Mr. Sprague who needs the sea-air + moderate travel, + for whom I shall be happy to do whatever is in my power.

We have had excellent Anniversaries of the [Tract + Bille] Societies, the slavery question having prominence at each. I [?] from a report of my address from the chair of the Tract Society the closing words which as an echo of what you + I were conversing about last Monday may interest you. After speaking of God’s hand in the progress of emancipation during the past year, as a principle + a fact, I said

“And now, brethren, since we have been led thus far, let us have courage to be consistent with what we rejoice in. Let us face the whole proper result of the Providence we have been contemplating. Let the enfranchisement of our church brethren be a complete enfranchisement. Let it not stop in the removal of the schackles [sic], till all are taken away. IF the abused man is fit to be a soldier in the full pay + uniform of our citizen-armies, standing at least upon an [equality] of danger + trial with the white man, in defence of our Government + its blessings, he is fit to be a citizen under our Government in full liberty + privilege. We must boldly face + honestly accept that result. With me it requires no effort. God is leading us to it. All consistency demands it. Our past history is full of inconsistency in that direction. We have now come up to the logical requirements of our Declaration of Independence. God be praised that He is making straight our path. What I said at the beginning, I repeat that in these remakrs I speak not officially though occupying an official chair. I speak only for myself” --

It was received with strong expression of approval. The next day Mr. Lennox (the wealthy man_ Pres. of the Am. Bille Soc. told me nothing had given him so much hope as what I said.

Please address me care of B.R. MCilvaine Ep. N. York --

Yours affectionately


Letter to S. P. Chase



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