Hamilton died the following day, first declaring that he bore Colonel Burr no ill-will.
Colonel Burr said he very much regretted the whole affair, but the language and attitude of Hamilton forced him to send a challenge or remain quiet and be branded as a coward. He fully realized before the meeting that if he killed Hamilton it would be political death for him, too.
At the time of the deed Burr had no family; Hamilton had a wife and seven children, his oldest son having fallen in a duel fought three years before on the identical spot where he, too, fell.
Burr fled the country.
Three years afterwards, he was arrested for treason in trying to found an independent State within the borders of the United States. He was tried and found not guilty.
After some years spent abroad he returned and took up the practise of law in New York. He was fairly successful, lived a modest, quiet life, and died September Fourteenth, Eighteen Hundred Thirty-six, aged eighty years.
Hamilton’s widow survived him just one-half a century, dying in her ninety-eighth year.
So passeth away the glory of the world.
Not many days ago I saw at breakfast the notablest of all your notabilities, Daniel Webster. He is a magnificent specimen. You might say to all the world, “This is our Yankee-Englishman; such links we make in Yankeeland!” As a logic fencer, advocate or Parliamentary Hercules, one would incline to back him at first sight against all the extant world. The tanned complexion; the amorphous, craglike face; the dull black eyes under the precipice of brows, like dull anthracite furnaces needing only to be blown; the mastiff mouth accurately closed; I have not traced so much of silent Berserker rage that I remember of in any other man. “I guess I should not like to be your nigger!” —Carlyle to Emerson
[Illustration: Daniel Webster]
Those were splendid days, tinged with no trace of blue, when I attended the district school, wearing trousers buttoned to a calico waist. I had ambitions then—I was sure that some day I could spell down the school, propound a problem in fractions that would puzzle the teacher, and play checkers in a way that would cause my name to be known throughout the entire township.
In the midst of these pleasant emotions, a cloud appeared upon the horizon of my happiness. What was it? A Friday Afternoon, that’s all.
A new teacher had been engaged—a woman, actually a young woman. It was prophesied that she could not keep order a single day, for the term before, the big boys had once arisen and put out of the building the man who taught them. Then there was a boy who occasionally brought a dog to school; and when the bell rang, the dog followed the boy into the room and lay under the desk pounding his tail