FULL STANDING CDV OF STEPHEN A. DOUGLAS - THE LITTLE GIANT

$125.00 SOLD

Quantity Available: None

Item Code: 259-170

Image shows Douglas in a dark civilian suit with white shirt and black bowtie holding a stovepipe hat in his left hand.

Image is very clear with excellent contrast.

Reverse has E. ANTHONY back mark and “STEPHEN A. DOUGLAS” in light modern pencil.

Born in Vermont, Douglas studied law in Canandaigua, New York, before moving to Illinois in 1833, where he became involved in politics. As a youth he had been captivated by Andrew Jackson, and it was as a Jacksonian that he built his career. He played an important part in the organization of the Democratic Party in Illinois, introducing such new devices as party committees and nominating conventions and pushing for party regularity and discipline. He enjoyed a lasting popularity among the small farmers of the state, many of whom had migrated from the border South, and he used his popularity to establish a tightly knit Democratic organization.

After moving to Illinois in the 1830s, Stephen A. Douglas briefly courted Mary Todd, who went on to marry his future rival, Abraham Lincoln.

Holding several state offices, Douglas ran for Congress in 1837, losing by the narrow margin of thirty-five votes. Six years later, he was elected to the House of Representatives, where he sat for two terms. In 1847, he was elected U.S. senator, a position he held until his death in 1861.

Douglas was involved in every major issue to come before the nation during his years in Washington. As chairman of the House and Senate Committees on Territories, he developed a strong interest in the West. One of his first legislative proposals was a program that included territorial expansion, the construction of a Pacific railroad, a free land (homestead) policy, and the organization of territorial governments. ‘You cannot fix bounds to the onward march of this great and growing country,’ he declared. He believed in America’s unique mission and manifest destiny, was a leading proponent of Texas annexation, demanded the acquisition of Oregon, and supported the war with Mexico. A man of great energy and persuasive power, standing only five feet four inches tall, Douglas became known as the Little Giant.

When slavery became a divisive political issue during the Mexican War, Douglas’s romantic nationalism faced a new challenge. Fearing that the issue might disrupt the Republic, he argued for the doctrine of popular sovereignty-the right of the people of a state or territory to decide the slavery question for themselves-as a Union-saving formula. He led the fight in Congress for the Compromise of 1850. Four years later, he incorporated the doctrine in the Kansas-Nebraska Act, thus repealing the Missouri Compromise of 1820. Douglas’s hopes for the country suffered a setback when the act aroused bitter opposition from northern antislavery elements, who eventually formed the Republican Party.  [ad]

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