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The national Republican. (Washington, D.C.) 1860-1862, March 13, 1861, Image 1

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' ., EVEilY HORNING,
Onfctnii itrret, scat B, opposite the Gtneral
Post Office,' by ' ' '
1 ; nstfis CtPH'AUE & fco.;
'"' ', ' run ms.
To cltj subscribers six and a quarter cents
per week, payable to the carriers.
To mall tubscrlbers, three dollars and fifty
cents per annum, payable in advance.
PRICE ONE CENT.
SPEECH OF HON. S. S. BLAIR,
OF riWNSYLVASIA,
IN THE HOUSE OP REPRESENTATIVES,
Fesrcart 23, 1801.
The House having under consideration the ro
port from the select committee of thirty-three
Mr. BL AIR said:
Mr. Speaker: There seems to rao a strange
anomaly in our politics. In the clashing opin
ions of these troublous times, all appear to unit:
in praise of the Government of the United States ;
Willi one consent Its structure is pronounced to
be better adapted to the spirit of our people than
any that could be devised. This Is the testimony
which nn experience of three quarters ot a cen
tury bears to the wisdom of its framers, nnd
which, wo have been accustomed to expect would
be strengthened as years Increase. Rut while
these encomiums are on the lips of all, we find
that one party, in open rebellion against its au
thority, is organized to destroy It by force of
arms; another seeks to change its Constitution;
and yet a third threatens to revolt, unless it shall
be altered to suit their views ; while a fourth, In
opposition to all, demands its preservation and
perpetuity as our fathers made it. The enemies
of the Government, bold, cunning, and impetu
ous, have usurped the powors of tho people In
six of the States. They havo by force, and by
the basest treachery that ever stained the earth,
become possessed of property of the nation, pur
chased at a cost of over seven million dollars, for
the common defence of nil. They have taken our
gens and turned tbelr fire on the flag of the na
tion, thus far, with perfect impunity. In the face
of these dire events, what a spectacle do wo pre
sent to tho world ? Will the generations that are
to succeed us believe-that at such a time we sat
out a whole winter, trying bow far we might go
to comply with the demands of traitors, and what
new securities we might devise for the protection
and spread of human bondage
Sir, when wo came hero in December, I hoped
to Bee the patriots of the North and South stand
ing together in firm concord, and uniting their
counsels for tho preservation of the Union in its
Integrity. I thought they might all agree to pro
vide whatsoever legislation might be deemed
needful for the prompt nnd vigorous execution
of the laws; and was prepared, anl am still ore
pared, to Join bands with every men willing to
avow his unqualified devotion to the country.
Animated by this hope, I was pained when the
bonorablegenlleman from Virginia Mr. Uoteiebj
introduced bis resolution changing the accus
tomed order of proceduro by referring that por
tion of tho Presld nt's message touching the
trouble to a s-leot committee of thirty-thiee. If
we had voted down tho resolution, and nil others
of like character, we would have had before the
public mind the naked Issue, Union or diiunlon ;
you would nave nitmsi instantly arousea irom
Its profoundest depths the Union sentiment in
the hearts of the people. To meet any great
crisis like this, it is essential that the publio
spirit should be called forth ; but following in
the footsteps of the Administration, which was
without policy, without unity, struck with the
paralysis of wavering resolution, and distracted
by fears and timorous doubts, we tailed In that
Import int work
A new issue has been mado up a false and
distracting one; not union or disunion; but new
guaranties to slavery or disunion. From that
day, slavery has seemed almost to keep court
within the temple of the nation; where, from far
and near, men have come to do her the reverence
of rljht loyal liegemen. Propositions of great
diversity in form, but nearly nil looking to the
nation il recognition of slavery, were showered
upon us for many days; and the gentlemen from
the dl'affected Slates on the committee, as we
are informed, after it had been determined that
slavery should not have a roving commission
over Mexico and Central America, refused fur
thor official Intercourse with their colleagues;
who, themselves divided and distracted, have
presorted a number of reports, no one of wblcb,
it appears, had the sanction of the mejirity.
Thus it Is, sir, that in this great effort to win
over the enemies of tho Unjon, wo have suc
ceeded only in distracting its friends.
It seems to me, Mr. Speaker, that we have not
vet craDnled with the living Issue that is before
us; we bavo been telllar the people that this
question of disunion must be looked squarely iu
the face; and yet the House and tho benate and
the Administration have, up to within one week
of our adjournment, been looking at it askance,
w hlle we endeavor to reopen a discussion already
exhausted and irrevocably closed by the solemn
verdict of the people. Sir, the only question that
any man can ask this day is : sha 1 the will of a
majority bo successfully thwarted by nn organ
ized conspiracy In the minority? The problem
which is uppermost In the minds of the people,
all experience shows, must be first solved, before
they will direct their attention to other less in
teresting investigations. It is n law which, if
but obeyed, will lead to succcsi to seize first
upon the greatest good that is within our reneb,
and to combat firt tho greatest evil that en
counters our progress.
The people are at this time more deeply con
cerned in establishing tho fact belore tho nations
of the world that the Government of the United
State i is a real power on tho earth, than in ad
justing the details of policy. It is no time now
to bo higgling with the demands or faction in be
State, when faction has drawn tho sword against
the State itself. Faitlon must be put down.
Treason must first be subdued before Its pretexts
cm be Bafely considered. We cannot dally with
It but at the peril of the nation's honor, which
is the nation's life. It asserts the principle that
the peoplo of any one Slate rasy, in tho exercise
of a right springing from tho Constitution, at any
time, with or without cause, withdraw from the
Union, ana erect in our must a toretgn Indepen
dent government, such as they may choose to
adopt, whether it be a republic, a constitutional
monarchy, or an absolute despotism. If this be
true, then, wo must bow to the necessity of ac
knowledging it with becoming grace. Bitter as
may he the cup, we must drluk it to the dregs.
We must give up every lort and arsenal In the
seceding States, take down tho stars and stripes,
and salute with respect tho Palmetto, the Peli
can, and the lUtllcsnake. If secession is consti
tutional, then, sir, wo nro bound, by our oaths,
to recognise thc-o States as foreign sovereignties
as fully as wo rccogulso the sovt reignty of Eng
land or ot France. Ilut, tlr, If there Is no such
right, we cannot, we dare not, recognise it, or
even seem to recognise it, howover slightly or
nhltnuelv.
The Hgnt ot secession is a political mcury ui
modern giowth. It looks upon the Constitution
as but a league or compact between Independent
States, and that the Government which it estab
lishes is but an ugent of the several States in
trusted with the execution of certain powers,
(rhlch may bo revoked and annulled by any
1 . . . .,..,.., .i r
1 lHt""-'lbk
atioirai
Vol. I.
State, as tho Interest, convenience, or whims of
Its people may determlue; and that, after such
revocation, the State resumes its original inde
pendent sovereignty. Its first fundamental error
Is, that the States composing this Confederacy
ever were In possession of separato Independent
sovereignty. When South Carolina sent her del
egates to Congress, she was still a colony or
Great Britain, never having assumed to exercise
the high powers of a sovereign ; and her dele
gates, like the delegates of all the other colonies,
met only to consult for the public tatty, but
found the pressure of events so strong that they
were of necessity compelled, as united colonies,
to auumt the powers of n sovereign nation. It
was ns united Lolonles that sovereignty was as
sumed, by which they wtro able to vindicate the
independence of the United States. This league,
or Confederacy, though itself declared to be per
petual, not being a Government which operated
on the people directly, but upon the States, gave
place to the Constitution, which established a
Government, not a'league. It was established
by the people, In precisely the same way that
they established their Stato governments; and
in all matters confided to its Jurisdiction by the
Oonstitntlon, it claims the obedlen'e of the citi
zen in the same way that the State Constitution
claims his obedience in all matters within the
Jurlidictlon of the State. Each government Is
supreme within Its own sphere; so that neither
can absolve tho citizen from his obligations to
the other. The sacred Instrument itself declares
Its character as a Conttilution for the people of
the United States. It was not ordained by the
deputies of sovereign States, as is professed by
tho Montgomery constitution. But the fact that
It operates upon the people in the several States
no more lessens its force as a Government for
the whole people, than does the division of the
people of a State into county and township or
ganizations detract from the obligation of the
citizens of each of them to obey the State Con
stitution. From tho foundation of tho Government till
recently, the idea was never entertained that our
Constitution was but a league of States. About
the first resolution that was adopted by the con
vention which formed it, declared "that a na
tional Government ought to be established, con
sisting of a supreme legislature, Judiciary, and
executive," and that resolution was fully carried
out in the great work of the convention. And
it is for us to say whether it shall be preserved,
or whether it shall go down, Ignomlnlously, at
the bidding or south Carolina and her confede
rates. It is for us to say whether Its foundation
is on a rock, or on sand or stubble. Its supre
macy must be preserved by a firm and just exe
cution of the laws In every portion of the country.
It must not be enervated, and thereby dishonor
ed, by the faintest actual or Implied recognition
of this heresy of secession.
But others tell us that the only effectual way
to preserve the Government Is by a compromise.
Now, there are thousands of people who tell us
to compromise, who seem to attach no definite
idea to tho word. When reminded that Con
gress can only execute Its powers by the enact
ment of laws br the remedy of evils, without
tt lllng us what particular line of action we should
take, they advise us to " do something." No
body seems to know what particular " some
thing" it Is wise to do. The country is actually
in u panic. Some persons, alarmed by unusual
events, without waiting to take counsel of reason,
would madly rush on almost any extraordinary
course ; they know not, and care not what. We
all remember bow tho whole country was panic
Btrlcken by John Brown's lawless invasion at
Harper's Ferry; or, rather, how it was seized
upon by desperato politicians to alarm the fears
of tho people; under the Influence of panic, ex
traordinary measures were resorted to, which all
now admit to havo been unwise, and 'which,
ultimately, cost tho State of Virginia more money
to watch Brown, at Charlestown, than it cost
the British Government, for the same length of
time, to watch Napoleon on the' Island of St.
Helena. These movements, aided by the fierce
attacks In Congress on the Republican pajty, as
belog responsible, produced such a state of alarm,
that ,tuo Union meetings called on the Repub
licans to disband tbelr organizations, and " do
something " for the salvation of the Union. But,
Initead of yielding, the Republicans, in the
strength which conscious rectitude imparts,
proceeded to tho proaer business of legislation,
and convinced the country that a party which,
standing by Its principles, was able to govern
Itself, was fit, likewise, to govern the country.
We lot the panic die oat; and our fidelity to
principle has been rewarded by the confidence
of the country. And now, again, a mad and
foolish panic Is diligently nourished, under which
six States from South Carolina to Louisiana
have been forced out of the Union by the same
alarmists. lias tho world ever witnessed such
an exhibition of wicked folly 1
Some of these States, since tho origin of the
Government, and all of them, slnco tbelr organi
zation into State Governments, have enjoyed the
advantages of a Union, to which they are In
debted for whatever of consequence they pos
sess, and yet, in an hoir of unreasoning mid
ness, have levelled the forces of destruction
against that Union itself.
They seise upon its public buildings, upon Its
treasury, and appropriate to their own uses the
hospital which the benevolence of the Govern
ment bad dedicated to Its disabled seamen.
Montesquieu has a chapter of three lines in his
Spirit ot Laws, to illustrato his idea of despotic
power, ne tells us
11 Whon tho savages of Louisiana art) desirous of fruit,
Ihey cut tho trco to tho root and gather lUo fruit ; Ibis u uu
emblem of despotic government."
While tho Illustration does justice to the sel
fishness of despotism, it reminds us, in the light
of the events I have mentioned, that tinny of the
more enlightened successors of the aboriginals of
Louisiana havo not much Improved on the wis
dom of their predecessors. Do they, with any
reason, expect to gather and long to enjoy the
irullS 01 union inuepcoueuce, security, aim
strength by destroying the tree which bears
them? No, sir All men everywhere pronounce
them mid. They havo been hurried by their
leaders Into excesses and troubles for which there
Is but one remedy, and which, if we will only be
equal to our duty and possess our hearts In pa
tience, will certainly be applied ; and that Is, the
expulsion of the conspiring leaders from power
by tho certain return ot the people to reason and
leflection. The men who sacrifice the public
order to their ambition, will in turn become the
victims of the very disorders which they have
btought about. If history has its logic, it has its
avenging justice too.
But shall the Government do nothing? Well,
sir, I think there is one branch of the Govern
ment has been alrcaly used to do a good deal.
Heads of Departments, Bworn to maintain the
Constitution and the laws of the Uulted States,
have openly and secretly used the opportunities
of office for the overthrow of the couutry. Dis
graciful engagements have been made with men
la arms against the Government, to leave the
strongholds of the country In a defenceless con
. r i Y v r '
WASHINGTON, D. C, WEDNESDAY, MARCH 13,
dition. Inasmuch, however, as confidence in the
integrity of that arm of the Government has been
Improved of late, lot us hope that the future will
show It to be well founded. But shall not Con
gress enact some laws relative to slavery, which
can be called a compromise, with these men, In
order to briny them back to the Uniont Bring
them back I Sir, they are not out of the Union.
Their paper resolves are nullities; and when you
thus recognise South Carolina and other States
as out of the Union, you admit that Its lawahave
no force within their limits. Contrive aa you
please to devise compromises for what you call
reconstruction, and as a condition precedent to
them all, you are confronted with this humilia
ting concession which you re forced to make
that South Carolina rightfully disgraced your
flag, and that she may do so again at any future
time. Sir, in this hour of peril I turn a willing
ear to the voices of departed patriots. I listen
submissively to one of the wisest, greatest, and
noblest of men. When South Carolina rebelled,
in 1633, because she disliked the tariff laws, John
Qulncy Adams, of the Committee on Manufac
tures, in his report, says :
" The subscribers believe, therefore, that the ground as
suraed by tun South Carolina convontlon for usurping tho
sovereign and limitless power of tho people or that btale,
to dlelato the laws of ihe Union, aud prostrate Uio legisla
tive, executive, and judicial authority of tbo United btates,
Is aa destitute of foundation as tho forms and substance ul
their proooodings are arrogant, overbearing, tyrannical and
oppressive. They bollovo that une partlcto of coinproniUa
with that usurped power, or of concession to its pretensions,
would be a heavy calamity to the people of tho whole Union,
and to nono more than to the iiooplo of South Carolina them
selves. That such concessions by Congress would bo a de
reliction of their highest duties to tho country, and directly
load to tho float and Inevitable dissolution of tho Uoiou.
WiUi tho usurpatious or the South Carolina convention,
thero can bo no possible compromise. They must conquer,
or they must fall."
Oh, that the statesmen of that day had all
been true to the prlnclp'ee of Mr. Adams's report
and General Jackson's proclamation, and had
consulted Ihe future of the Republic, rather than
their temporary quiet 1 A compromise tariff was
passed to bring back South Carolina, and she
was taught that rebellion was a wise policy to
maintain her supremacy In the Union. That
compromise has brought us unmixed ovll ; but
I hope that patience and fortitude will enable us
now to avoid the mistake which was then made ;
foi I do believo that, if you bring her back by a
compromise, she will, before six months, rebel
against the specific duties of the pending tariff
bill, if it should become alaw. Slavery Is thought
to be somewhat weaker now than formerly, and
the bargain proposed Is, If we will give our
solemn pledge to strengthen and perpetuate it,
we will be paid for the wear and tear of princi
ple by the return of the " confederates" into tbo
Union, with the right to leave it again whenever
they please.
But the majority of those who urge conces
sion, admit that the cotton States, having as
sumed an open attitude of rebellion against the
Constitution and the laws, compromise with them
is Inadmissible without dishonor; yet, unless
concession be made to the border slaveholding
States, the same causes which operated to drive
off the former, will, In a very short time, pro
duce like results in the latter.
But if a compromise to bring back the seceded
States Is Inadmissible, because it would amount
to a recognition of the doctrine of secession, does
not the same objection apply to a compromise
made In obedience to a threat of secession ? If
one Is d shonorable, Is not the other equally so?
There is scarcely anything within the compass
of our powers to do, not involving a sacrifice of
orlnclple, mat tbo nooie union men ot tnese
States wonld nsk, to which I would not be in
clined to respond as a brother. I know their he
roism and their fortitude, and the dashing gal
lantry with which they have swept the field
against haughty Insolence and arroganco, which
thought to crush thorn at a blow. But hearts so
noble as tbelrs will not, and cannot, insist that
we should sacrifice our convictions of duty to the
country In this time of its trial. Rather than do
this, I believe they will buckls on their armor
afresh, and march to the higher and the final
conflict. The strength which their victory over
Immediate disunion has imparted to them will
bring within their power its more insidious, and
therefore more dangerous enemy conditional
secession. They hare bad their ovation; let
them arise to their triumph. In my judgment,
any measures of compromise are a concession,
not to the patriots of those States, but to the
usurpers themselves, by which they will be ena
bled to return to power.
But, sir, what Is It that Is demanded of us? I
notice that the President has preferred the charge
that the people of the North have, by their
presses and their pulpits, spoken evil of slavery,
and that pictorial representations unfavorable to
It huve been scattered over the country. Now,
Mr. Speaker, as to the pictures, I have heard
that a long time ago they were sent into the
Southern States. As the President has always
been a swift witness for slavery, his antiquarian
researches into the forgotten events of the past,
that he might bring forth some apology or ex
cuse for treason, is catculated to excite rather
our curiosity tban our surprise. Thero may have
been pictures they are not unusual weapons of
warfare in political encounters; I cannot tell
how much the President himself may be indebted
to their instrumentality in tho canvass of 1830.
They were extensively used by Granville Sharp
and Clarkson, in their contests with slavery In
England, and the good La Fayette, afraid to
trust the cause of freedom alone to the eloquence
of Mlrabeau, lest its Bacredness might be sullied
by the ambition of the orator, distributed five
hundred pictures himself among the members of
the French Assembly ; a copy of that picture is
the only one of the kind tha' I have ever seen In
my lite, nnd that came from Mr. Jefferson's libra
ry. I do, therefore, truly think that a revolution
must indeed bo "artificial," which Includes
among the evils to be remedied a grievance like
this.
We are told, however, by the gentleman from
Kentucky, Mr. Sinus, that even If we should
adopt every proposition for adjustment yet made,
yet, unless we "put down" nil publications and
speeches at tne Norm against slavery, mere can
bo no Union. We are not told how we are to
put them down. I suppose it would perhaps be
agreeable to return 'to the old Spanish policy of
subjecting every manuscript of book or pamphlet
to u board of licensers before publication, and
allow nothlog to be printed and read but what
they up rove by their mark; somewhat In the
same way mat leatner anu oiuer ctimmou ties
are admitted to the market by the official brand
oflhe Inspectors. But, Mr. Speaker, whether a
centorshlp of the press, or a system of pains and
penalties, be desired, If the constitutional guar
antee of its freedom must be destroyed us a sac
rifice for the Union, it will never be done. It
underlies our whole system of constitutional lib
erie, and may be said almost to compose it.
It is furiber charged that the Ren blican party
design to abolish slavery Iu the btates where it
exists, and we must therefore consent to an
amendment to the Constitution, putting It ex
pressly out of the power of Congress. The Con
stitution ought not to be altered, except for the
X - ""-fc "V
r- i f .
gravest reasons, much less to meet an evil that
has no existence. The charg- that tbo Repub
lican party claims such a power, or intends to
usnrp it, is untrue. I have never known a Re
publican who did not consider an attempt by
Congress to lnterfero with It In the States, as a
usurpation to be resisted. Congress tins no more
power over the subject of slavery In the States
than it has over the State laws relating to the
descent of lands, or any other State Institution.
We have said so In our platforms, our addresses
to the people, and in our votes given here
unanimously at this session on the following res
olution: " Jtonfnat, Thit neither Congress nor the people or gov
ernment of any non slavehotdiitgbtato his the constitutional
right to Icgislato upon, or Interfere with, slavery In any
siavcholdlng blato in the Union."
Our opponents know that we wilt llvo up to our
Sledges, and therefore fear that tho people who
ave been deceived by their mtsreproientatlons
will very naturally conclude that they are not to be
believed hereafter. They cannot have my vote to
help them ont of that difficulty. The South has
every security In the Constitution already, with
out the proposed amendment. We have done
everything that men can do to remove apprehen
sions on this point. An Athenian ambassador,
in treaty with the Lacedsemonians, after many
propositions had been considered, said: "There
can be but one bond nnd security that will bind
us. You must show that we have so much In our
bands that you cannot hurt us if you would."
You havo that bond aid security. Why, then,
did the committee report a remedy for an evil
wblcb can only have a place in the wildest fancy.
With regard to slavery In the District of Colum
bia, where Congress has the unquestionable power
to abolish it, they say that, inasmuch as no one
proposes to interfere with It, they deem It useless
to report any amendment. I think it not quite
consistent in the committee to refuse nn amend
ment where itis possible to interfere with slavery,
on the ground that nobody proposes to do so, and
at the same time to bring in an amendment to
provide against not only what no one proposes to
do, but what, if desired, it is impossible to do.
But gentlemen tell us that demagogues In the
South, by persistently misrepresenting our pur
poses to the people, have brought them to be
lieve that it is our purpose to abolish si tvery. I
am bound to suppose that the oppone ts of this
class of politicians In the South have always
known these representations to be untrue. They
have had all the evidence which any man capa
ble of thinking could ask. I must presume, like
wise, that they have, with the earnestness of sin
cere men, brought this evidence to the notice of
the people; so that, wherever the poison of
falsehood has been scattered, the antidote, truth,
has followed. Now, if the friends of truth have
done their whole duty in this respect, to the
Southern people, I would be very sorry to sup
pose that a majori'y of them continue to believe
a falsehood. It would be evidence to my mind
that they would not believe though one rose
from the dead, and that they were given over to
an utier Inability to see the truth, though it
blazed aroundthem as the light of the sun at mid
day. If an amendment to the Constitution could
be carried, it would not open tbelr eyes; for the
demagogues would tell them, as they tell tbtm
now, that we care nothing about the Constitu
tion, nnd wo only amend it to blind them, that
we might tbe more easily accomplish our pur
puses; and if it should be lost In any four States,
and consequently not adopted, then they would
aver tbe evidence of the design they charge upon
us to bo conclusive. Let us not, I entreat, theu,
permit a rash haul to be laid upuu the urk of our
safety, lest for the error we maybe smitten with
greater evils than we design to cure.
Another proposition is before us, which was
first brought lorwurd under the aupicious name
of the distinguished Scnat tr from Kentucky, and
called a compromise. Tbo offer is to revive the
Missouri line of 30 30', and extend it to Califor
nia, and to exclude slavery from all territory
north of the line, and to protect and secure it in
all territory, "now owned or which may be here
after acquired" by tbe Uulted States; and this
astounding proposition Is to be incorporated In
the Constitution as an amendment, to oecome
the supreme law of tbe land, high above all
Congresses, courts, and Territorial Legislatures
A superficial glance at it might lead one to sup
pose that It contains a concession to freedom.
The territory, however, which It proposes thus
to consecrate, Is already free. Kansas, the first
fruits of the bloody strife between freedom nnd
slavery, Inaugurated by tho repeal of tho Mis
soutl compromise, has already been welcomed
into the councils of the Union. She is free by
her patience, ber sufferings, her endurance, and
by the vuior of ber sons. Had she gono down
under the victorious heel of slavery, not only
her doom was sealed, but that of every rood of
national territory to the north and west of her
limits. But the same tide of free cm gratlon
which gavo ber population needful for a State,
has peopled Nebraska, already organized, and
Dakota, with her sister Territories, yet await ng
organization from this Congress. And these a-o
the Territories which the Crittenden amendment
magnanimously devotes ti freedom. Sir, they
neednoWilmot proviso, either in their organic
acts or In the Conjtitut on, to preserve them to
freedom.
Tncre is no virtue, then, in this part of the
proposed compromise, except that which is born
of necessity. Wo neither wish It nor ask it;
why, then, is it offered? It is but a cloak to cover
the nakedness of the attempt to devo e the Irce
territory southward to slavery. L:t the people
mark it, and reflect on tbe humiliation to Which
they are invited :
" That tho terr'lory now hold, or that may hereafter be
acquired by tho United states, shall bo divided by a lino
trout east to wist ou tho parallel ol 3C CD', north lal.udo.
That Iu all tho territory south or said lino, luioluuury ser
vitude, us it now cxiits in tbo btates Suulh of Mason and
Axon's lino, Is heroby rocognlsod,and .lull bo suglalnct
and protected by all the departments ol tho territorial gov
eruojkUts "
The country "now held" south of the lino
to which this amendment is aptilica de, is the
Territory of New Mexico, rrgan zed by one of
tbe compromise measures ol ieou,aiid wmcu was
eiteuded by the act of 1893, so as to cover the
couutry culled Arisona, wilh the right of udmls
ilon as a S'ate, with or without s avery, as its
comtltulion might provide.
The right, however, was expressly rcsertcJ to
Congress to ro eolnnyhw which in ght be passed
by the Territorial Legl 1 iture. No oio will be
so crcdulouj a) to suppose that tills extended
barreu waste called New Mexico, where In ten
y ears they have ouly been able to introduce about
twenty s nv-s, is the field In which this extraor
dinary constitutional amendment is expected to
operat". The real intention is to apply tbe pro
vision to Mcilio, or such portions ot ber domin
ions at we may hereaf er acquire by treaty or
acts of aggression. She has lo g been a weak
and distracted nation, owlug to the cuubo that
now, for the first time in our history, begins to
show itself with sufficient force to disturb the
general tranquillity of the country refusal of a
defeated party to submit t the will of a majority.
xaaaxsxt
1861.
No. 89.
fTIfl"
Sir, this Chamber has been ringing with ap
peals to the Republican members to come for
ward, iu a magnanimous and conciliatory spirit,
and cast away the Chicago platform. These ap
peals are made by gentlemen without n smile
on their faces. They seem to bo agonized at tbe
thought that we hesitate to abandon our platform
and adopt tbelrs.
By what right do you n'snmo to charge ns
with the elevation of a party platform above the
country, whei you yourselves do cla'm that your
platform is of so much more value than the Union
that unless you get It foisted Into the Constitu
tion of the country you will trample her flag In
the dust. You plunder the public moneys and
cry out, "glvo usjustico;" you seize tbo forts
and arsenals, and then preach conciliation; you
turn Ihe guns which you have taken on an un
armed steamer In tho service of the Oot eminent,
nnd then with extended hands implore us to
rise to tho height of this great argument, far
above the Chicago platform. Sir, if we could
cast eff our principles as easily as old garments,
It were low-thoughted baseness to yield our man
hood on such .dishonorable torms.
But I would have no on- believe I would yield
to these demands, if they could honorably be
considered at all. Candor and frankness, I ven
ture to say, are virtues as essential In public af
fairs as In private, notwithstanding the maxim of
Louis XII prevails to a great extent, that " be
who knows not how to dissemble kuows not how
to govern " Regirdlng the right of one man to
have property iu another as being In derogation
of the law of Mure, and that wherever the right
exists It must depend exclusively on tho local
law, I believe and tbalbeliefismjch older than
tbe Chicago platlortn that the moment tbe sUvo
is transported beyond the limits of hli State, to
a St.te or Territory where no such law exists,
be becomes as free as his former master. II w
then, sir, can I, or any one believing this, con
sent to a law of Congress or a no v Constitution,
that will seize that man thus made free a'id con
vert him iato a chattel? Twelve years ag i the
Union was threatened, because the people of Cal
ifornia thought proper to seek admission us a
State with a constitution forbidding Blavery.
Senator Davis p esented this Identical demand,
as bis ultimatum, in these words :
"That my position may go forth lo tbo country In tho
same oolumna that convey iho sentlmonts of tho Senator from
Kentucicy, I hero assert that never wt.1 1 lake lesa Uuu tho
Msaourl comprotniao lino iztondcd to tho Tactile ocean,
with Iho speclUc recognition of lu i right to hold slav.s In
tho territory below that lino ; and thal,beforo such Terri
tories are admitted into tho Union as but s, litres may bo
taken there rrom any of the Uaitad btates at tho opl'uu of
thofr owuors."
To this demand for mero congressional recog
nition of slavery south of the line, Mr. Clay re
plied in this memorable language, so familiar to
us all :
" I am cxtramoly sorry to hear the Senator from Missis
sippi txy that ho rcq lircs first tho extension of tho Misiourl
compromise hue to the I'aclfle, and also that ho U nut satis.
lied Willi lint, but requires, II I uuderstoodiiitn correctly, a
positivo provision for the admission of slat ury south of that
line And now, sir, cotmug from a slavobuto, as I do, I
owe it to myseir, I owo It to truth, I owe It to tho subjoct, to
say,tliat lioeaithly power could Induco me l) vote lor a
specific measure for Uio iutrolucliouuf slavery whero 11 hat
nutbolorootlYtod,cilbor south or north of that lluo. Coming
from a slave buto, u? I do, it is my so'emn, deliberate, and
well in tltirea dclcrmiiutlou, that nu power no earthly
xiwer shall compel mo to Nolo lor lite i-itii'o introduction
of slavery, cither souh or north of that liuo."
These noble words of the grcit orator of Ken
tucky will live in the memory ot men, and pre
serve bis fame In the aget that are to come after
us, If all elso that be has said should be forgot
ten. But I urn totd that Pennsylvania is con
servative, and has never been so devotod to this
abstraction as It Is tbo fashion to call It that
her Repieientatlves might nol, consistently with
her views, prove false to it. She is a conserva
tive State, and for that reason they traduce her
who would represent her infidelity to principle.
She will have her Representatives conserve, In
legislation, every good priticipls which she has
ever avowed. Sho was conservative of justice,
humanity, and political consistency, wben, in
1784, she put slavery in the way of ultlmato ex
tinction wilbin her borders by an act of her
Legislature, whici tells us a) well by Its pro
visions as by its thrilling preamble bow she
loved liberty and bated bondage. She ecorded
ber sentiments again, in 1819, on tbe question
of slavery In the Territories, and those gentle
men who supposo that we nro only standing
on tho Chicago platform, will do well to look
at this record. We are told tbe platform was
not made in view of these troubles, or she
would have repudiated it. Well, sir, the re
solve which I am about to cite was no party
platform, made iu time of public quiet to catch
votes, but tbe solemn declaration of her Legis
lature, at n time not unlike the present. The
first conflict on tbe Missouri question was In
the winter of 1819, and it shook tbo very foun
dation of the Union; but the people ot Penn
sylvania, with one heart and voice, protested
against the admission of Missouri, with a slave
constitution; and the Legislature resolved against
the admission of the State, unless slavery
should be prohibited. From lis preamble, I
extract the following:
" A measure was ardently supported la tho tail Congroes,
and mil, probabl , be us caruet.1 urged during the exist
ing eebeiou of thai body, whieii has a irobalilj tendency to
Impair tho K)i.t cal rotations nt the several Maus , wh eh is
ealeulatud lo mar the s.K.ial hippluessuf lbs pieseut utid
future geuoruLoDM ; and whlib, it adopted, would impede
the march of huniaulty aud Ircedom through tho world,uud
would atllx aud perpelualo an odious st lin upuu the present
lace. A measure, In brief, uhich provisos tosureid iho
crimes and cruelties of slavery fioiu Ibubanlsof tbo Mis
sissippi to tho shores of the 1'ac lie.
"11)0 beualo and lljusoor Itepresetilativus of I'onusyl.
vaula, therefore, cannot but deprecate any departure Ire in
tbo humane uud oaliglilened pumy p nsued uoi uuly by tho
illustrious Coiigussuf 1787, but by llitlr successors, w lh
out ixeiqliou. lho are poisuaded that, lo open Iho for
lllc reglous of Ihe West to u servile race, woild Uulto in
crease their numbers beyond ull Mtst example ; would open
a now and steady market for the Ian teas venders ol humau
flesh, and woiid render all schemes lor obit -rating tins
most fo il blot upuu the Amera.au character useUss aud uu
aval tag "
In disregard of these sentiments, come of her
Representatives, tho next winter, voted for the
admission of tbe State with the compromise line;
and she showtd btr conservatism by letting them
an stay at nome alter mat. sail conservative,
sho stood by the Missouri compromise, though
distasteful to her; and when, in 1854, that com
promise was abrogated, she showed her appreci
ation of tbe c-ondu-1 ot those who betrayed her
principles by burying tbem in a common political
g ave. And now, Blr, we aro asked to abrogate
tto compromise ol 1850. Let those who say
Pcnnsyltaniii would make une compromise to
destroy another keep in mind her history, or she
will hold than in nerce rrnn nibr.ince.
The recent uttetnpt of her Senators to move her
from her moorings will tail. It It were arf effort
to mislead her people by the artful contrivances
under which politicians ordinarily endeavor to
screen their departure from principle, a temoo
rary success might be possible; bul'when all dis
guises are thrown off, and tbe naked, unveiled
word of cotumand is giien that they must not
only abandon their " feeliogs" but their " princi
ples," it will not be obeyed. No hopes ot gain,
or fears of loss, will change the delermiuatioti ot
her people. You may set forth In order all the
past glories, the present blessings, and future
prospects of Union, on the one band, and on the
. . J
RATES OF ADVERTISING.
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Every other day advertisements, fifty per cent,
additional once a week advertisements! charged
s new for each Insertion.
Inserted only once, ten cents a line.
Cborch aud other notices, and wants, twenty,
five con's for each Insertion.
Ten lines or less constttnte a iquara.
other yoti may marshal the horrors of Ita violent
rupture, and she will still refuse to set her seal
to such a covenant as this. There Is nothing In
the proi ositlon which wonld entitle It even to a
respectful consideration but the excellent char
acter of Its first mover.
I have been surprised, Mr. Speaker, to learn
that persons who profess a desire for a lasting
penco should be found the advocates of this pro
ject. The honorable gentleman from Ohio, Mr.
Coitwiv, In the remarks which he made on
bringing forward bis report, saw tho dangers 10
clearly himself that he simply said everybody
knew what would be the effect. I wish he had
thought proper to say more on that point. Be
elaborated upon the absurdity of the apprehen
sion which was supposed to be entertained by
many, that the Republican party designer to
change the relation of master and slave Id the
States; everybody knew that; but theu, how
much better did we know tt after be had spoken
of il? Sir, if this amendmont shall be proposed
for adoption by the States, It will provoke art
agitation or. th subject of slavery which will
cast Into the shade all that has gone before It.
Tbe moral, political, and social aspect of slavery
will be tbe theme of every tongue ; the storms of
1820, 1830, 1850, and 1854, will be but as the
slnlns of a lullaby compared with the bowlings
of tbe tempest. And then for the result. If It
should be rejeoted by moro tban oae-fourth of
the States, us it would b', the same Influences
uow nt work 011 the dlsrup Ion of tbe Union, If
quieted by this measure until that time, would
be revived with more power for mischief. But
if It shou'd be adopted, what then ? As tho Con
stitution now stands.lt Is In tbe North sustained
becnuseit is n free Constitution; so that no man
can justly say be is responsible at the bar of con
science lor the bondage of any buman being In a
slave State? But let such aprovlsion once go Into
tbe Constitution, and the people realize the fact
that the independence of these United States
which, as Mr. Jefferson said, was won, not for
our rights as American citizens only, but for the
rights of human nature has been perverted to
the open and avowed sanction of chattel slavery,
and I see clearly enough you would not have
peace. You now talk of destroying the Govern.
meat on a supposed point of honor. Do you sup
pose a point ot conscience would be less likely to
breed discontent?
1 have a word to say of what Is called tho bor
der State proposition. It proposes that when,
in any sixty thousand rquare miles of territory,
south of the line 30 30', there shall be found a
population equal to the number required for a
Itepresentatiie in the Hodso of Representatives,
it shall bo udmitted as a State; but that, in the)
mean time, neither Congress nor a Territorial
Legislature shall aloliih ot prohibit slavery. TbUt
project is bottomed on an assump ion that sla
very bas a constitutional right in the Territories.
It assumes what Is without warrant la any lino
or word of the Constitution, and In opposition to
tbe whole current of legislative and judicial au
thority of the Government from 178T till a very
recent period, that whenever we acquire terri
tory, and belore its admission as a State into tbe
Union, a slaveholder may take his slaves within
its bounds, and there hold them or sell tbem,
ithout any law specially giving him such licence.
There is, in principle, no real difference between
tills propoailion and that which I have Just con
sidered. The propoiition is objectionable fur another
rcasou: that while itlu terms applies o tbe ter
ritory south of the line 36 30', yet Inasmuch ai
it is put forward as Involving a just principle of
compromise, It requires no prophet to see that
further acquisitions of territo y In that direction
will only renew thu present dllurbances, and
as the agitators will claim tbelr settlement on
like terms, we will easily persuade ourselves
that the principle of what was eseemed a set
tlement in 1801, might with fairness be applied
to nil such additions to our domain to the south
ward. it Is said that New Mexico bas already estab
lished slavery by a territorial law, and we are
therefore ouly invited to recognise an existing
fact ; we all know, sir, that the law was enacted
at the request of a member of this House by
ou'side l'.'tluences, s cli as sought to introduce
it into Ka sas ; but if ihe fact were otherwise, (
deny the right of a few people in New Mexico, or
any nuuoer or people In any Territory, to make
a slave of any man. They may have the mere
brute force to accomplish It, but tbey are without
the right ; and so long as I have a seat here, they
shall have no such permission by any vote of
mine. And, sir, In support of this view, I voted
last year to repeal the obnoxious lawi of New
Mexico, by which not only the slavery of black
'men but of white men is secured. We reserved
the right to repeal her laws In her organic act,
arid I will not consent ti yield that right.
The proposition to admit New Mexico as a
State is not acceptable to me for many reasons.
If she were here to-day asking admission as a
State, I would vote against ber, with a free or a
slave constitution. She has never asked for ad
mission. Her population is confessedly Insuffi
cient, as all accounts that I have asyet seen have
not placed ber population of American citizens
beyond seven hundred ; while Mexicans, half
breeds, and all, do not amount to more than
sixty thousand. It seems to me unjust to the
old States to adult into the Union a State with
out population enough to en'itle her to a member
of Congress, and yet give hor ono member and
two Senators. But that objection has increased
weight wben tho population bas so recently been
citizens of a foreign nation, and therefore with
out that training in the principles of our Oonstl
tuiion which fits our people for the responsibili
ties of free government. A great body of ber
people, wo learn, are Mexican peons white
slates men who have been sold to pay their
debts. I think it would be better to await the
progress of these people to a point wbero men
are better thought of. Tbe introduction of this
"peculiar institution" will not go far to allay
the trouble which springs from tbe other " pecu
liar Institution" the perpetual fountain of bit
terness and strife; and therefore, 1 feel disposed
to retain the Territory in apprenticeship yet a
while longer. The object is to remove a bone of
contention. 1 do not believe that one man In a
hundred has had bis thoughts upon New Mex
ico irom tne beginning ot these troubles, ma
real trouble has been ihe offices. A leading se
cessionist of tbe Senate, a day or two since,
declared that, if Lincoln and Hamlin would re
sign, tbo troubles would eud That, sir, is tbe
true secret of our mischief. It is not the baro
dry bone of New Mexico, but tho fat pastures,
where the Democracy have Lrowsed, aro the ob
jects of solicitude to those of tbem who rebel
against the will of tbo peoplo
Tbe gentleman from Virginia Mr. Gakxitt
has thought that it was the true policy of Vir
ginia to secede, because in her present connec
tion she would hold n subordinate place, whilst
she would lake the lead In a Southern confede
racy. Has Virginia any special policy she can
expect to promote there that she cannot here; or
Is it even supposed that she will shape the course
of the present confederate States ? Sho hardly

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