Both of them watched with uneasy alarm the rapid drift toward anarchy; and both put forth all their efforts to stem the tide. They were of course too great men to fall in with the views of those whose antagonism to tyranny made them averse from order. They had little sympathy with the violent prejudices produced by the war. In particular they abhorred the vindictive laws directed against the persons and property of Tories; and they had the manliness to come forward as the defenders of the helpless and excessively unpopular Loyalists. They put a stop to the wrongs which were being inflicted on these men, and finally succeeded in having them restored to legal equality with other citizens, standing up with generous fearlessness against the clamor of the mob.
As soon as the project for a closer union of the States was broached, Hamilton and Jay took it up with ardor. New York City followed their lead, but the State as a whole was against them. The most popular man within its bounds was stout old Governor Clinton, and he led the opposition to the proposed union. Clinton was a man of great strength of character, a good soldier, and stanch patriot in the Revolutionary War. He was bitterly obstinate and prejudiced, and a sincere friend of popular rights. He felt genuine distrust of any form of strong government. He was also doubtless