The Writings of Carl Schurz/From E. L. Godkin, May 19th, 1872

New York, May 19, 1872.

Is there no way out of the wretched mess into which these Cincinnati nominations have plunged us? If the matter be left as it stands, it will be impossible for any one to speak of “reform,” during the next fifteen years, without causing shouts of laughter.

No man of standing and character can take the stump for Greeley without putting his whole future in peril. His election, every man of sobriety and thoughtfulness concedes, would be a National calamity of the first magnitude. If it occurs it will be the triumph of quackery, charlatanry and recklessness, over the sober common-sense which has thus far saved the republican government on this continent. I do not know whether you are aware what a conceited, ignorant, half-cracked, obstinate old creature he is; but you must know enough to feel that we did at Cincinnati a most serious and dangerous thing. It was a shocking mishap. I assure you this feeling about the matter deepens every day. Can nothing be done to make amends?

Did you read the address to the people of the great State of New York the other day signed, in behalf of the “reformers,” by John Cochrane and Theodore Tilton the biographer of Mrs. Woodhull! Has it really come to this complexion with us?