"Recognizing manood and loyalty, not color"
"There are strong grounds for doubting the wisdom of conferring the right of suffrage at once and indiscriminately upon the negroes in the South; there are still stronger grounds, in our opinion, for doubting the wisdom of conferring the right of suffrage upon a people who have but just ceased waging internecine war against the Republic, and who are still full of animosity and bitterness.
There is no doubt but the negroes are as well if not be better fitted to vote, loyalty as well as intelligence being taken into account, as the whites, but a period of probation, during which order may be restored and some degree of intelligence and sound sentiment diffused, will work no hardship to either class, and will conduce to the best interests of the nation, and its permanent peace and prosperity.
When the Southern States reappear by their representatives in the National Legislature, we trust it will be as free States, recognizing manhood and loyalty, not color, as the basis of suffrage."
--Wisconsin State Journal editorial, June 27, 1865
The sentiment of the article is reasonably progressive for the time, but what struck both of us was the grammar, the vocabulary, and the complex sentence structure. Three sentences averaging 56 words each. The "reading level" for that editorial must be quite high; I would doubt that anything approaching that degree of sophistication would be published in any newspaper nowadays.