the moral and mental growth of the country, they were willing to risk not only the dangers of war with the British king, but the far worse dangers of disorder, violence, anarchy, and a general loosening of the social bonds among Americans themselves. The event proved their wisdom.
Yet the dangers were very real and great. The country was still in the gristle; the thews had not hardened. There had been much lawlessness, in one quarter and another, already; and the long struggle of the Revolution produced hideous disorganization. It is impossible to paint in too dark colors the ferocity of the struggle between the Whigs and Tories; and the patriot mobs, either of their own accord or instigated by the Sons of Liberty and kindred bodies, often took part in proceedings which were thoroughly disgraceful. New York had her full share of these mob-outbreaks during the summer of 1775. The lawyers, pamphleteers, and newspaper writers, who contributed so largely to arouse the people, also too often joined to hound the populace on to the committal of outrages. The mob broke into and plundered the houses of wealthy Loyalists, rode Tories on rails, or tarred, feathered, and otherwise brutally maltreated them, and utterly refused to allow to others the liberty of speech and thought they so vociferously demanded for themselves. They hated and threatened the Episcopalian, or