April 13th 1859.
My dear Sir.
Yours of 9th inst is received.
I am sorry that we do not agree fully as to the proper line of policy to be pursued by the "liberals" in the present state of public affairs in Kansas. The Democracy are organized, and the elements, though discordant now, will, after the Convention at Tecumseh, be of one accord--the pro slavery men can not be driven from the party, & the free state or Douglas men will not be, for they are in a majority. With an united, organized, and principal party to contend against, the elements composing the opposition must either unite and compound their differences; or, dividing suffer defeat. You and I will agree in this--that if the State Govt. in Kansas fall into the hands of a party
affiliating with the Pierce & Buchanan Democracy, it will be a great disgrace to free state men who effect the result, and a great discredit to those who might prevent it.
Now, I can see but one mode in which we can prevent it--and that is to make a fair & honest effort to unite the elements of the opposition, by endeavoring to secure an organization of the Republican or opposition party at Osawattomie, on a just and rational platform, and led by honest & conservative men. I will make that effort--and if we can not get such an organization, I will not go with the party. I do not mean to say that I will make no concession for the sake of an union--but I do mean that I will not subscribe to what is regarded by me as a false or dangerous doctrine or policy, nor support for office false or dangerous men.
In coming to this conclusion, I have had less opportunity to consult with those in whose veiws of general policy I have heretofore concurred than I hoped to have. Perhaps I may on that account have gone wrong--If so, a month from now your policy will have been indicated, and my error exposed.
You will see by the enclosed call that a County opposition Convention will be held here on the 23d inst. It will adopt a temperate platform & send good men to the Convention at Osawattomie, I am sure.
Let me add a word, in repetition of what I said as to your policy, when we last met. The free state organization I think is regarded by a majority of the people as worn out. With the practical settlement of the question of freedom in Kansas, "its occupation's gone"--I grant it has strength in the affections of many earnest men who have fought under
its banner from the Big Spring's Convention 'till now--But it has strength only with them, & they are but a small minority of the people of Kansas. Everything which that party name implies, or the Big Spring's platform claims, is granted now on all hands--I think therefore that your movement will have strength not chiefly because you raise again the free state flag, but because many who wish for a fair and liberal state & national policy despair of it through the Democratic or Republican party--and their error, I think, consists in despairing of such a policy in the Republican party, when their influence should at least be first exerted to that end. I write in great haste, but believe what is written be sufficient to enable you to understand my position.
Tho: Ewing Jr
G. W. Brown Esq.
Editor Herald of Freedom