A State in Need of Reconstruction in 1815
Perhaps after its treason of trade with the enemy and attempted secession during the War of 1812, Massachusetts might well have been treated as a territory and occupied by Southern troops for 12 years while corrupt politicians from elsewhere emptied the State treasury and disenfranchised her citizens—whilst undergoing “Reconstruction.”
Bernhard Thuersam, Director
Cape Fear Historical Institute
Wilmington, North Carolina
A State in Need of Reconstruction in 1815:
“Oh Massachusetts! How I have lamented the degradation of your apostasy! Massachusetts, with whom I went with pride in 1776, whose vote was my vote on every public question, and whose principles were then the standard of whatever was free or fearless. But she was then under the counsels of the two Admass; while Strong, her present leader, was promoting petitions for submission to British power and British usurpation.
But should the State, once more, buckle on her republican harness, we shall receive her again as a sister, and recollect her wanderings among the crimes only of the parricide [Federal] party, which would have basely sold what their fathers so bravely won from the same enemy. Let us look forward, then, to the act of repentance, which, by dismissing her venal traitors, shall be the signal of return to the bosom, and to the principles of her brethren; and, if her late humiliation can just give her modesty enough to suppose that her Southern brethren are somewhat on par with her in wisdom, in patriotism, in bravery, and even in honesty, although not in psalm-singing, she will more justly estimate her own relative momentum in the Union.
With her ancient principles, she would really be great, if she did not think herself the whole. (to General Dearborn, March, 1815)
(The Jeffersonian Cyclopedia, Funk & Wagnalls Company, 1900, page 543)