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The southern press. (Washington [D.C.) 1850-1852, July 04, 1850, Image 1

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Ellwood Fisher A. Edwin De Leon.
DAILY, fit) 00
TRIWEEKLY, ... - - 5 00
WEEKLY, - 2 00
<?/- Subscriptions payable in advance. Any person
procuring live subscribers shall receive one copy
pat w. 1 letters to the Editors to be post-paid.
< Irno:, Pennsylvania Avenue south side, between
3.1 an 1 I;. stii:<-ts.
m 1 ! i
Address to the People of the Southern
At a large meeting of Southern members
of both Houses of Congress, held at the Capitol
on the evening of the 7th ultimo, the
Hon. Hopkins L. Turney, of Tennessee,
having been appointed Chairman at a previous
meeting, took the Chair; and, on motion
of the Hon. David Hubbard, of Alabama,
the Hon. William J. Alston, of Alabama,
was appointed Secretary.
I Whereupon, the Hon. A. P. Butler, of
South Carolina, from the committee appointed
at a preliminary meeting, reported an Address
to the Southern people, recommending
the establishment, at Washington City, of a
newspaper, to be devoted to the support and
defence of Southern interests; which was
read, and with some slight jopdvftcaJiqjjs,
tj " rm- ?' HMj W> .f^ig IgF1 -:w w'Ppr
11 1 "* *-> w
? y3L "rfOu
?^rf 11 " I.. M i i |
}****'r. vdj|L Y.
Vol. 1. Washington, Thursday, July 4, 1S50. Mo. 16.
The following resolution was offered by
the Hon. Thomas L. Clingman, of North
Carolina, and unanimously adopted by the
Resolved, unanimously, That the committee, in
publishing the Address, he instructed to give with it
the names of the Senators and Representatives in
Congress who concur in the proposition to establish
the Southern Organ, as manifested by their subscriptions
to ths several copies of the plan in circulation,
or who may hereafter authorise said committee to include
their names.
Maryland.?Senator: Thomas G. Pratt.
Virginia.?Senators: R. iM. T. Hunter,
J. M. Mason. Representatives: J. A.
Seddori, Thos. H. Averett, Paulus Powell,
R. K. Meade, Alex. R. Holladav, Thos.
S. Bocock, H. A. Edmundson, Jeremiah
North Carolina.?Senator: Willie P.
Mangum. Representatives: T. L. Clingman,
A. W. Venable, W. S. Ashe.
South Carolina.?Senators: A. P Butler,
F. H. Elmore. Representatives: John
McQueen, Joseph A. Woodward, Daniel
Wall ee, Wm. F. Colcock, James L. Orr,
Armistead Burt, Isaac E. Holmes.
Georgia.?Senators: John McP. Berrien,
William C. Dawson. Representatives: Jo
seph W. Jackson, Alex. H. Stephens, Robert
Toombs, II. A. Haralson, Allen F.
Alabama.?Senator: Jeremiah Clemens.
Representatives: Uavid Jttunnard, j?'. vv.
Bowdon, S. VV. Inge, VV. J. Alston, S.
VV. Harris.
Mississippi.?Senator. Jefferson Davis.
Representatives: W. S. Featherstcn, Jacob
Thompson, A. G. Brown, VV. VV. McVVillie.
Louisiana.?Senators: S. U. Downs,
Pierre Soule. Representatives: J. H. Harmanson,
Emile La Sere, Isaac E. Morse.
Arkansas.?Senators: Solon Borland, VV.
Sebastian. Representative: William R.
Texas.?Representatives: Vol. E. Howard,
D. S. Kaufman.
Missouri.?Senator: D. R. Atchison.
Representative: James S. Green.
Kentucky.?Representatives: R. II. Stanton,
James L. Johnson.
Tennessee.?Senator: Hopkins L. Turney.
Representatives: James II. Thomas,
Frederick P. Stanton, C. H. Williams,
John II. Savage.
Florida.?Senators: Jackson Morton, D.
L. Yulee. Representative: E. Carrington
And upon motion, the meeting adjourned.
Attest :
Wm J. Alston, Secretary.
The committee to which was rejerred the
dull/ of preparing an Address to the people
of the slareholding Stales upon the
subject of a Southern Organ, to be established
in the City of Washington, put
forth the following:
Feia.ow-citizens : A number of Senators
and Representatives in Congress from
the Southern States of the Confederacy deeply
impressed with a sense of the dangers
which beset those States, have considered
carefully our means of self-defence within
the Union and the Constitution, and have
come to the conclusion that it is highly important
to establish in this city a paper, which,
without reference to political party, shall be
devoted to the rights and interests of the
South, so far as they are involved in the questions
growing out of African slavery. To
establish and maintain such a paper, your
support is necessary, and accordingly we
address you on the subject.
In the contest now going on, the constitutional
equality of fifteen States is put in
question. Some sixteen hundred millions
worth of negro property is involved directly,
and indirectly, though not less surely, an incalculable
amount of property in other forms.
But to say this is to state less than half the
doom that hangs over you. Your social
forms and institutions?which separate the
European and the African races into distinct
classes, and assign to each a different sphere
in society?are threatened with overthrow
Whether the negro is to occupy the Same
I social rank with the white man, and enjoy
equally the rights, privileges, and immunises
of citizenship?in short, all the honors
and dignities of society?is a question ol
greater moment than any mere question ol
property can be.
Such is the contest now going on?a contest
in which public opinion, if not the prevailing,
is destined to be a most prominent
force ; and yet, no organ of the united inter
ests of those assailed has as yet been established,
nor docs there exist any papei
which can be the common medium for ar
interchange of opinions amongst the Southern
States. Public opinion, as it has beer
formed and directed by the combined influence
of interest and prejudice, is the force
which has been most potent against us ir
the war now going on against the instituilion
of negro slavery; and yet we have taken
no effectual means to make and maintain
that issue with it upon which our safety
and perhaps our social existence depends
Whoever wi'l lock to the history of this
question, and to the circumstances under
which we are now placed, must se<
that our position is one of imminent daager
and one to be defended by all the means,
moral and political, of which we can avail
ourselves in the present emergency. The
warfare against African slavery commenced,
as is known, with Great Britain, who, after
having contributed mainly to its establishment
in the New World, devoted her most
earnest efforts, for purposes not yet fully explained,
to its abolition in America. How
wisely this was done, so far as her own colonies
were concerned, time has determined;
and all comment upon this subject on our
part would be entirely superfluous. If,
however, her purpose was to reach and embarrass
us on this subject, her efforts have
not been without success. A common origin
a common language, have made the English
literature ours to a great extent, and the
efforts of the British atuj popole
to mould the - 'opinion of all who
speak the English language, have not been
vain or fruitless. On the contrary, they
have been deeply felt wherever the English
language is spoken; and th3 more
efficient and dangerous, because, as yet,
the South has taken no steps to appear and
plead at the bar of the world, before which
she has been summoned, and by which she
has been tried already without a hearing.
Secured by constitutional guaran ies, and
independent of all the world, so far as its
domestic institutions were concerned, the
South has reposed under the conciousness
of right and independence, and foreborne to
plead at a bar which she knew had no jurisdiction
over this particular subject. In this
we have been theoretically right, but practically
we have made a great mistake. Ali
means, political, diplomatic, and literary,
have been used to concentrate the public
opinion, not only of the world at large, but
of our own country, against us; and resting
upon the undoubted truth that our domestic
institutions were the subjects of no Government
but our own local Governments, and
concerned no one but ourselves, we have
been passive under these assaults, until
danger menaces us from every quarter. A
great party has grown up, and is increasing
in the United States, which seems to think
it a duty they owe to earth and heaven to
make war on a domestic institution upon
which are staked our property, our social
organization, and our peace and safety.
Sectional feelings have been invoked, and
those who wield the power of this Government
have been tempted almost, if not quite,
beyond their power of resistance, to wage a
war against our property, our rights, and
our social system, which, if successfully
prosecuted, must end in our destruction.
Every inducement?the love of power, the
desire to accomplish what are, with less
truth than plausibility, called "reforms"?
all are offered to tempt them to press upon
those who are represented, and, in fact,
seem to be an easy prey to the spoiler. Our
eqality under the Constitution is, in effect,
denied; our social institutions are derided
and contemned, and ourselves treated with
contumely and scorn through all the avennes
which have as yet been opened to the public
opinion of the world. That these
assaults should have had their effect is not
surprising, when we remember that, as yet,
we have offered no organized resistance to
them, and opposed but little, except the isolated
efforts of members of Congress, who
have occasionally raised their voices against
what they believe to be wrongs and injustice.
It is time that we stiouiu meet ana maintain
an issue, in which we find ourselves involved
by those who make war upon us in
regard to every interest that is peculiar to
us, and which is not enjoyed in common with
them, however guarantied by solemn compact,
and no matter how vitally involving our
prosperity, happiness, and safety. It is time
that we should take measures to defend ourselves
against assaults which can end in
nothing short of our destruction, if we oppose
no resistance to them. Owing to accidental
circumstances, and a want of knowledge of
the true condition of things in the Southern
States, the larger portion of the press and of
the political literature of the wotld has been
directed against us. The moral power of
public opinion carries political strength along
with it, and if against us, we must wrestle
with it or fall. If, as we fiimly believe, truth
is with us, there is nothing to discourage us
in such an effort.
The eventual strength of an opinion is to
be measured, not by tne number who may
chance to entertain it, but by the truth which
sustains it We believe?nay, we Know, mat
truth is with us, and therefore we should not
shrink Irom the contest. We have too much
staked upon it to shrink or to tremble?a
i property interest, in all its forms, of incalculable
amount and value ; the social organization,
the equality, the liberty, nay, the existence
of fourteen or fifteen States of the Coni
federacy?all rest upon the result of the
struggle in which we are engaged. We
must maintain the equality of our political
position in the Union ; we must maintain the
dig;.ityand respectabil.tv cf our social position
before the world ; and must maintain
and secure our liberty and lights, so far as
our united efforts can protect them ; and, if
possible, we must effect all this within the
i pale of the Union, and by means known to
t the Constitution. The union of the South
1 upon these vital interests is necessary, not
only for the sake of the South, but perhaps
for the sake of the Union. We have great
interests exposed to the assaults, not only ol
the world at large, but of those who, consti|
tuting a majority, wield the power of our
! own confederated States. We must defend
those interests by all legitimate means, or
! else perish either in or without the elfort. Te
i mc.ke successful defence, wc must unite with
each other upon one vital question, and make
the most of our political strength. We must
do more?we must fro bevond our entrench
i merits, and meet even the more distant and
indirect, but by no means harmless assaults,
- which are directed against us. We, too,
- can appeal to public opinion. Our assailant;
r act upon theory, to their theory we can op.
pose experience. They reason upon an
? imaginary state of things to, this we may
- oppose truth and actual knowledge. To do
; this, however, we too must open up avenues
, to the public mind j we, too, must have an
organ through which we can appeal to the
world, and commune with each other. The
want of such an organ, heretofore, lias been
perhaps one of the leading causes of our pre- i
sent condition.
There is no paper at the Seat of Govern- !
ment through which we can hear or be heard
fairly and truly by the country. There is a j
paper here which makes the abolition of slavery
its main and paramount end. There ;
are other papers here which make the main- !
tenance ot political parties their supreme and ;
controlling object, but none which consider
the preservation of sixteen hundred millions
of property, the equality and liberty ot tourteen
or fifteen States, the protection of the
white man against African equality, us paramount
over, or even equal to, the maintennance
of aome, political organization wiiick m
to secure a President, who is an object of
interest not because he will certainly rule, or
perhaps ruin the South, but chiefly for the
reason that he will possess and bestow office
and spoils. The South has a peculiar position,
and her important rights and interests
are objects of continual assault from the majority;
and the party presj, dependent as it
istupon that majority lor its means of living,
will always be lound laboring to excuse the
assailants, and to paralyze all efforts at resistance.
How is it now? The abolition party
can always be heard through its press at
the Seat of Government, but through what
organ or press at Washington can Southern
men communicate with the world, or with
each other, upon their own peculiar interostsr
So far from writing, or permitting
anything to be written, which is calculated
. to (U'lend the rights of the South, or state its
case, the papers here are engaged in lulling
the South into a false security, and in manufacturing
there an artificial public sentiment,
suitable for some Presidential platform,
though at the expense of any and every interest
you may possess, no matter how deaf
or how vital and momentous.
This state of things results from party obligations
and a regard to party success. And
they but subserve the ends of their establishment
in consulting their own interests,
and the advancement of the party to which
they are pledged. You cannot look to them
as sentinels over interests that are repugnant
to the feelings of the majority of the selfsustaining
In the Federal Legislature the South has
some voice and some votes; but over the public
press, as it now stands at the Seat of
Government, the North has a controlling influence.
The press of this city takes its
tone from that ot the North. Even our
Southern nress is siimerted. more or less, to
v j 7 ; ~ 7 ?
the same influence. Our public men, yes,
our southern men, owe their public standing
ancl reputation too often to the commendation
and praise of the Northern press. Southern
newspapers republish from their respective
party organs in this city, and in so doing,
reproduce?unconscious, doubtless, in
most instances, of the wrong they do?the
northern opinion in regard to public men
and measures. How dangerous such a state
of things must be to the fidelity of your representatives
it is needless to say! They
are but men, and it would be unwise to suppose
that they are beyond the reach of temptations
which influence the rest of mankind.
Fellow-citizens, it rests with ourselves to
alter this state of things, so far as the South
is concerned. We have vast interests, which
we are bound, by many considerations, to
defend with all the moral and political means
in our power. One of the first steps to this
great end is to establish a Southern Organ
here, a paper through which we may commune
with one another and the world at
large. We do not propose to meddle with
political parties as they now exist; we wish
to enlist every southern man in a southern
cause, and in defence of southern rights, be
he Whig or be he Democrat. We do not
propose to disturb him, or to shake him in
. his party relations. All that we ask is, that
he shall consider the constitutional rights of
. the South, wiiich are involved in the great
abolition movement, as paramount to all
. party and all other political considerations.
And surely the time has come when all
southern men should unite for the purpose of
self-defence. Our relative power in the
t :_i_i il_ tt_:_? ,i* : l: :*t.
ljegisiuiui e ui inc u miuii is uiiiimiimiiii^ vviiii
every census; the dangers which menace us
are daily becoming greater; and, the chief instrument
in the assaults upon us is the public
press, over which,owing to oursupineness, the
North exercises a controlling influence. So
lar as the South is concerned, we can change
and reverse this state of things. Jt is not
to be borne, that public sentiment at the South
should be stifled or controlled by the party
Let us have a press of our own, as the
North has, both here and at home?a press
which shall be devoted to Southern rights,
and animated by Southern feeling; which
shall look not to the North but the South for
the tone which is' to pervade it. Claiming
our share of power in Federal Legislation, let
us also claim our share of influence in the
press of the country. Lot us organize in
every Southern town and county, so as to
send this paper into every house in t ie lan l.|
Let us take, too, all the means necessary to!
maintain the paper by subscription, so as to
increase its circulation, and promtc the
spread of knowledge and tiuth. Let every
portion ol tlic >oi.tn uiinisn us iuii quota 01
talent and money to sustain a paper which
ought to be supported by all, because it will
be devoted to the interest of every Southern
man. It will be the earnest effort of the
committee who are charged with these arrangements,
to procure editors ol high talent
and standing; and they will also see that the (
paper is conducted without oppoailiAi, and
without rejerevre to the political parties of
the day. With these assurances, we feel
justified in calling upon you, the people of
the Southern States?to make the necessary
efforts to establish and maintain the proposed
Mr. Thomas Darcy McGee about is to
i return to Ireland to resume the editorship in
part of the Dublin Nation,
<(uire?s no argument to show may be most effec"
lively extended under a territorial government.
For causes before stated, the climute is such that
no white man can work in the sun. This country
now, inhabited by an offensive, to some extent
agricultural people, is unsuited to the white race,
unleha it possess servile labor. But if we confine
our attention to the coast, where the refreshing
sea-breeze igjiigntts the climate, then throughout
this same extent you find, down to San Louis
Obispo, the mountains running close upon the sea;
its streams short, and the valley narrow. Here,
then, are scattered, some fifteen or twenty miles
apart, a few pastoral ranchos, with the agriculture
necessary to supply the inhabitants with Indian
corn and beans, which seem to be all that country
To the South, the coast-plain widens, the mountains
are depressed, gaps are found, connecting
the plains above with those which slope down to
the sea, until the ridge ceases, and the broad plain
of Los Angeles opens to the view. Here, where
the keen blasts or the North are checked by sheL;
toring mountains, and the sloping ptuins lace tlie
sun, we puss at once into a tropical cliniute. This
is the land of the grape, of cotton, of maize, of
the nlive. and the Rii?iir-cjine Here, so far us
Senate Debate.
Fru>ay, June 21), 1830. j
Mr. DAVIS, of Mifwissippi, resumed and concluded
as follows :
Mr. President : When the Senate ndjourned !
yesterday; I was about to offer some statements to
senators in relation to the amendment proposed
by the senator from hiouisiana. That amendment
is in accordance with a compromise which
once, gave peace to tli* country during a peroid
of intense excitement, and resulted from a desire
to save the Union from danger, with which it
was thought to be .seriously threatened. I cannot
believe the danger was as imminent then as it is
now. Then there were patriotic hearts in Congress
from every sectioi# of the country that came
to the rescue upon this tital question. Does such
patriotism exist in the present Congress as was
found in that of 18205 Are there not those around
me who will meet this question with the devoted
patriotism which the crinis demands, and if need
be, sacrdice themselves*-the good of ihair cuuni
try ? Ifany other plan shall be presented which I
j believe would be final,would terminate this distractI
ing controversy, and restore the fraternity that
existed among our fathers, I would make whatever
personal sacrifice such a plan would embrace.
At an early stage of the present session 1 indicated
my belief that the extension of the Missouri
Compromise was the only basis upon which a
settlement could he made, and all that has transpired
from that day to this has served to confirm
nie in that opinion. 1 was among those who supported
the raising of this committee?not that the
bills then before the Senate should he combined,
hut with the hope that it would bring in a measure
of adjustment, compromise, or settlement
which would recpive from mean approbation which
I could not give to those hills. The hope that
something would he presented to us upon which
we could all unite has met a grievous disappointment.
Though it is not my purpose now to detain
the Senate by a general examination of the hill, I
may he permitted to say that 1 have found in its
heterogeneous features nothing to command my
support as a Southern man, or as one who desires
the restoration of fraternity to this republic. 1 see
in it no termination of those elements of discord
which now disturb us. 1 see beyond it the same
questions which now exist. Beyond it I see a
higher excitement than that which surrounds us,
and the distant vista is enveloped in a gloom from
the contemplation of which I turn sorrowfully
away. When the Missouri Compromise was
adopted in 1820, as we were told yesterday, that
sage and patiiot, Mr. Jefferson, stiid it was hut
a reprieve. Such, sir, it has proved. The reprieve
has expired, and its extension is denied.
Now the measure is considered too extreme a
concession from the North, which then they enforced
on the South. Now we, the minority, are
to be brought at once to execution. Shall we
submit, or shall we resist? This is a question to
which freemen can give but one answer. Whatever
may be the result, I, for one, feel myself
bound to maintain, by every means at my command,
those constitutional rights which 1 am here
to represent. Ifevil shall result front my course,
upon the head of others must rest the responsibility.
However sad may be its consequences to
myself, if down it is my fate to fall, 1 shall retain
in my misfortune (lie consientious conviction
of having done my duty as a Representative, a
patriot, and as an honest man.
In the remarks I propose to offier upon *his
question, I shall direct myself to other considerations
than those broad and general views which
have been presented by others', and probably will
be presented again. 1 shall contend for this
amendment as a measure of expediency?as a
measure which is written by the hand of Nature
upon the surface of the country for which we
propose to legislate?a measure which is indicated
i?y the character of the people for whom we are
about to provide governmental organization, and
demanded by soil, climate, and productions, agricultural
and mineral. The fathers of this country
were neither so unwise nor so profane as to deny the
overruling Providence whose interposing hand
was often felt in shaping the destiny of the
infant republic. And if there be a special interposition?a
guardian care over us still?I think
it is manifested in the identity of the geographical
and political considerations for the renewal
of the compact, the extension of the line
of 36? 30', which is now presented. Never were i
political considerations more fully maintained by
geographical reasons. In looking at the map of
California, as it was remarked by the senator
from Louisiana, its unnatural boundaries most
vitriUo flip #?v#? pvtonHinne nvpr imtiitvtvji
hie mountain barriers, including; in one government
plains which have no other connexion,and
embracing the whole seacoaat, as if the whole
frontier were marked out for an empire instead of
| a State of the confederacy; as though its purpose
was to have n distinct international policy, to assume
the command of the whole commerce of the
Pacific,.and of those vast countries which lie beyond
it, and to control the naval stations on the
western coast, which greatly tended to create a
desire for its acquisition by the United States.
Here we see a country, backed by snow-covered
mountains, a broad vulley, with two rivers to
water, and a eoust-pluin connected with it. There
is the natural demarcation of a State. On the one
side the Sacramento, and on the other the Sun Joachim,
coming from the north and the south to pour
their treasures into the great entrepot of the country,
the harbor of San Francisco, theircommon
and only receptacle. As well might we expect
that the country watered by the Sacramento,
would be united to the valley of the Willamette,
nr.d become part of the Territory of Oregon, as
that the country south of the waters of San Joachim
would be included in the State of California.
Other motives no doubt combined with this
reason to induce the delegates of that part of the
territory to object to the formation of a State constitution,
the first operation of which, as I learn
from my correspondence in that country, has had
such effect that in most of the towns south of San
Luis Obispo they have held public meetings for the
purpose of petitioning Congress for a separate
territorial organization and government.
But to return to the point which I promised to
consider?the geographical arguments for this political
line of 36 deg. .'10 mill. At the intersection
of this parallel with the sea, as I am informed, the
const rnngeof mountains terminate in a bold promontory
that overhangs the ocean; thence eastward
it passes over desert mountains, crosses the arid
plain of the Monterey river, and enters the valley
through which the San Joachim flows south ofthe
permanent tributaries of that river, passing between
its southern branches and the Luke Tulares;
which, it is represented to me, does not, as is I
usually shown 011 the maps, regularly flow into
the San Joachim, but only does so when, in
time of freshet, the flats to its north, extending to
the San Joachim, are overflowed. Shut out from
| the sea-breeze, this plain is represented as having
I almost tropical heat, and as being fully occupied
by a quiet, harmless race of fishing indinns, to
whom the country is particularly adapted. But if
it ever passes into the hands of those who require
commercial ports, they must be sought in the
South. Distance and facility of route leave 110
doubt that San Pedro and San Diego, not San
Francisco, must be the ports of this section.
Then, nin I not sustained when I say that the
hand of Mature lias written this line upon the
countrv in characters which might have been read
before it was possessed by man ? Rut, again, the |
line of 38 deg. 30 min. divides the pastoral and
agricultural, the semi-tropical country, from the
mining nnd the grain-growing regions of the north.
South of this line no mine has proved productive.
North of it are the placers, which have, as by
i magic, drawn together the men who seek to coni
stitute this State. Leaving Monterey, which is
| about six miles north of this parallel of 36 deg.
30 min., and following the valley of the Monterey
| river, we pass through a country only saved from
the name of desert by the dilapidated missions
1 which were established by the Kindness of New
Spain, when the country was under the viceroy|
ally! For one hundred miles continue high, and
plains, unsuited for cultivation or any other purpose
than for wide-ranging (locks and herds. Passing
into the basin of Lake Tuleras, there is a plain
which is watered by small streams from the mountains,
and which now supports a considerable population
of peaceful Indians, who have a high claim
to the protective hand of Congress, which it re
cultivation exists, that cultivation depend** upon
irrigation and upon servile labor. It is a curious
fact that we fina here a rare of Indians who pass
at once into servility; who, from their complexions
and characteristics rather seem of Asiatic
origin than to be descended from the same parent
stock as the wild and free tribes who were found
in the country of the United States. The country
to the southeast of these mountains lias been
but little explored: it is in the possession of a
more settled and warlike tribe or men; and it is
because they have been so warlike and so populous,
that so little has been heretofore known of
the country. Shall we, then, abandon thesemen,
peaceful and prone to servility, or warlike and
with fixeil habitations, to the laws of California I
and the agressions of reckless men? Or shall
we extend that protection of the Federal Government
over them which a territorial organisation
will best enable us to give? In times past, the
United States have suffered bitter reproaches for
their policy towards the natives they found on
this continent?reproaches not always just, indeed
quite undeserved, as was beautifully demonstrated
by the Senator from Michigan (Mr. Cass) many
years ago, if we compare our conduct with that
of other nations, who have exercised control over
the aboriginal tribes of this continent.
The strong, far-reaching arm and unbiassed
policy of the General Government, undisturbed
by questions of Stute sovereignty, may govern to
protect these tribes. In the new and even unsettled
condition of California, it is to be feared the
reverse would be the case, if the country were included
iti her limits; that aggression would be
followed by hostility, to end in their destruction.
But, sir, there is another race with yet higher
claim upon us, in the vicinity of the coast. We
find that very population, who were by the treaty
to have their rights of property when they nassed
under our protection secured to them; we find the
pastoral race of Mexicans which inhabited the
country when we acquired it, occupying extensive
tracts of land; and we have reason (o believe they
are about to be driven from their possessions by
the legislation of California. It is not to be neglected
or forgotten that the present Governor of
California, as we have learned through the press,
announced as his policy a taxation of the lands
which would compel these runclieros to sell their
possessions. A tax, such as would not be felt in
a mining or even a farming district, would be destructive
to a pastoral population. This is the
natural fruit or legislation by those who have an
opposite interest and no sympathy with the others,
for whom they make laws. Is this the protection
of property, Which we guarantied in the
treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo? Is this the kindness
which those people have a right to claim
from the Government of the United States ? Or is
it not a gross act of injustice to the poople, who,
ignorant of our institutions, have confided in
our guardian care, and whom it is our duty to
protect ?
Then, Mr. President, whether we consider
this tjuestion in relation to the soil
and climate or in relation to the great
characteristics of the physical geography, a
i a,.r
Whether we consider the question with referenee
to the Jirescnt interests or the future
interest and well-being of those who now or
who are hereafter to inhabit those countries,
it is equally clear that South California
should be organized into a distinct political
community, under laws enacted with reference
peculiar characteristic, to the Mexican
inhabitants and to whom we owe protection,
kind and special in proportion to
their helplessness. For this we ought to
retain the powers which a territorial government.
secures to us over this country,
that we may shield it from the inappropriate
or hostile legislation of the men of northern
Mr. President, we are told that it is the
will of the people to which we should |
bow. Do the proceedings of t e convention
prove that ? 1 know not that any one
has full and accurate information in relation
to that subject. From such knowledge as
1 am able to glean, I believe that the peo_i_
_ r / i_i:r 1 i * _ &i..
pie 01 ouuiii VvUinu.ina were ieuuceu iu ine
alternative of sending delegates to that convention
to take part in its proceedings, or
seeing it proceed to establish the fundamental
law of their country without their cooperation
or advice.
And, sir, there is another instructive
statement in relation to this matter?that
these delegates, when they left their homes
to attend this convention, uniformly contended
against a State organization, and in favor of
a territorial government. We find them,
one after another, yielding to different views
?under what influences I am unable to say;
but it is to be remarked that a large proportion
of the members secured advantages, or
received offices from the action of the convention
to which they were delegates.
Hut, again, Mr. President, to decide how
far this is the will of the people, it is proper
to inquire what part of the population took
part in those elections. 1 compare two
towns for the purpose of illustrating that fact.
Los Angeles, with a population of about five
thousand people, gave about seventy-five or
eighty votes; while San Diego, a little vil
lage composed of a dozen adobe ports, gave
a vote of one hundred and fifty or upwards.
Then, sir, the question arises, how did that
happen? The answer is two-fold: L'.s Angeles
is one of the districts still inhabited by
the population acquired with the country;
they did not choose to become parties to this
convention; and therefore it was that their
vote was so small, although no expedient
was left untried, an officer having been sent
as a speciel agent to induce them to take
part in the proceeding. All was done that
could be done to get them to vote for delegates,
with only such success as is shown by
the election return. The explanation in the
other case is different. A body of men for
the survey of the boundary, and a military
escort, had just arrived, and were encamped
in the vicinity of the little village, when
they heard of an election. True to the instinct
of countrymen, they were ready for a
canvass. The boundary commission and the
army each put up their candidates; and then
the struggle commenced between them to
send a delegate to this convention, which
was to assume sovereignty over territory of
the United States, and to determine the fundamental
law of a country they had never
seen. The contest was of doubtful issue,
when a vessel came to in the oiling, and
more or less of the crew and passengers
were immediately brought in, as I learn, to
decide it by their votes in favor of the boundary
ci mmission. And then a body of dragoons,
stationed some distance in the country,
were sent for. They came in; they too assisted
by their votes to elect a candidate,
who was one of the military escort; and thus,
an oflicer of the army of the Uuitid States
"became a deleg$Te~to~tflfc 'convention which
has claimed to measure the rights of American
citizens in their own country. Was
this the will of the people? Was this the
sovereign will to which it is said that Congress
must bow? or was it an unauthorized interference
of men who had no legitimate or
! permanent connexion with the matter they
presumed to 1'ecide?
Now, sir, looking into the constituent ma
teriai 01 inat convention, we meet there,
instead of Mexican inhabitants?instead of
Americans who had gone there with the
intent to remain citizen emigrants, seeking
a new home?seven officers of the New
Ycrk regiment, sent out there by this government
for military purposes, three officers
of the United States army, two or three officers
of the navy of the United States, a
few Mexicans, who could not speak English,
and some of our citizens who were
said to have gone there to aid in the organization
of the government. The residue
was composed of persons of whom it may
be supposed a part were permanently identified
with the country?how great a part 1
will not pretend to say. JJut I would ask
of senators how many they suppose of those
persons thqy have known to emigrate to
California went there with the intent to remain
? It is not enough to say they will
probably never carry out their intent to return,
because to qualify them to found the
institutions of the country they should have
had at the time a fixed purpose in their mind
to make that country their home. This
could not be the case with those who a few
few months before had gone there merely
to collect gold and return to the United
States. There is another test : How many
had taken their families with them ??that
best guaranty of an intent to become permanent
Mr. President, it comes, then, to this
point: whether sojourners, persons travelling,
with no permanent interest or locality
inthe country?soldiers, sailors, or government
employees, who chance to be present
?are qualified to lay the foundations of a
State, and decide on the institutions which
shall prevail among generationsunborn
But, sir, there is something further to be
offered to those on whom these considerations
make no impression. Taking the population
according to all the ordinary estimates,
it was only about one-filth of the
population of California which took part in
this proceeding, either to elect delegates or
to ratify the constitution thev formed. What
then ? Four-fifths of the Americans in the
country, and Mexicans, to whom we are
bound to extend special protection, had no
connexion whatever with this convention.
Are we still to be told that its proceedings
imbody the impression of the will of the
people of California ? These, Mr. President,
arc the facts which come to light
upon an analyses of this remarkable proceeding
; and these facts are such as not
only apply to sustain in my opinion the
amendment of the Senator from Louisiana,
(Mr. Soui.e,) but which would entirely
justify us in treating this constitution as a
nullity, and proceeding to the formation of
a territorial government for the people who
I inhabit our western territory.
1 am not one of those, Mr. President,
I .1 :i?i ~~
i wiiu luu vn wim uiiy viui.ii ucntuucu <1? iiu?~
j tile to the territories. On the contrary,
their interest has uniformly received my
support. I am one of those who strove
most strenuously at the last session of Congress
in favor of giving those people a government.
I am one of those who was
willing then, as I am willing now, to admit
them as a State, so soon qs they come here
regularly with proper qualifications, and ask
for admission. But I am also one of those
who claim a conformity with the precedents
which have existed since the foundation of
the government, and which are necessary to
secure considerations of far higher importance
than any which concern the ascendancy
of a particular interest, or political party.
But, Mr. President, I find myself con-1
I stantly wandering into considerations broader
than it was my purpose to enter upon.
I have said that this country south of 36
deg. 30 min. was separated by nature from
the body of what is now called the State of
California, and that it claims a political organization
separate from the other. The
basin of the Lake Tulares, lying immediately
south of the parallel of 36 deg. 30
min. A bare inspection of the map, with
the slightest knowledge of the mountain
ridges and passes, must convince any one
that this country belongs to South Californa.
Its ports are San Diego and San Pedro.
That all the country back of the Sierra
Nevada up to the Salt Lake, must for commerrinl
nnrnnscs find its outlet at San Die
I go and San Pedro, and not at San Francis- |
i co, is established now, I believe, beyond
| controversy. We find the plain extending
i from the (Irent Salt Lake, running down
by a route over which there is said to be
i a good wagon-road to San Diego. Then,
| sir, what are to be the institutions, if left to
i natural causes, in the one country and the
other ? Will they be uniform or diversified
? If the latter, why seek to enforce on
them one system of municipal laws ? It is
plain, that of their commerce a part will go
to the South, and a part to the North. If,
then, connected with these considerations, I
have been able to show to the Senate, however
briefly, that the population, climate,
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and soil, united with those routes capable of
being travelled, all go to sustain this line of
36 deg. 30 mm, as the natural line of division,
I ask whether in adopting it we should
not be consulting higher considerations than
any of mere temporary political expediency.
I ask whether reasons of pre-eminent and
general importance do not demand that we
should sustain the amendment of the senator
from Louisiana ? But, Mr. President,
there is still another claim lor this amendment.
Anterior to the formation of this
State constitution by California, Deseret,
formed a State or territorial constitution,
and established her boundary. Deseret,
which lies east of California, has no outlet
to the sea except through the southern
part of California. They find their outlet fo j
the ports that 1 have mentioned. They
have no practicable commercial connexion
whatever with San Francisco. This was
most forcibly shown while Colonel Mason,
the military governor of that territory,
wished to obtain troops from the settlement
at the Salt Lake. An officer was detached
for the purpose; but, instead of being able
to go direct, he had to keep down on the
west side of the Sierra Nevada, which stood
a snow-covered wall for a distance of more
than three hundred miles before he found any
opening through which he could pass; after
which he had to travel north of the parallel
from which he started. It is I est, I think,
therefore, that this country of South California
should stand alone?that it have a
district organization ; but if that is not done,
then the most proper and natural thing remaining
to be done, is to attach it to Deseret,
which has claimed a part of it, and to
which it belongs by nature more properly
than to North California.
But the distinguished senator from Massachusetts
(Mr. VVkbster,) remarked yesterday
that we are reduced to an alternative
?that we have to admit California as a
State or that she will be separated from the
Union. Mr. President, these words come
also from the shores of the Pacific; and
what foundation is there, can there be, for
them. The people of California knock at
your doors for admission into the Union ; at
the same time we are told that they are suffering
for pr tection and assistance. They
have now a State government, and there is
no interference to prevent the exercise of
all its functions. Indeed, some portions of
the army and navy of the United States are
kent there for their benefit. Thev claim,
then, in order to enable them to carry on
their State government, the aid of the Federal
government. With what force, then
do they talk, or others for them, ot their seceding
from the United States, and setting
up a government of their own ? Why,
sir, it is idle. They need the protection of
this government, and I wish them to have it,
not the less because they have attempted
self-government before they were competent
to sustain themselves. With this is connected
another inquiry. Were they prompted
to form a State government, or was it by
their own opinion ! It appears to have
been because they were invited to it by one
who had no right to the exercise of the civil
functions which he assumed, or with which
he was improperly invested. They were
urged to it by the officers of the army in
California. The proclamation under which
the convention was convened, makes a
strange declaration. It asserts that the
laws of Mexico made the military commandant
ex-officio civil governor :
" The undersigned, in accordance with instructions
from the Secretary of W ar, has
assumsd the administration of civil affairs in
California, not as military governor, but as
the Executive of the existing civil government.
In the absence of a properly appointed
civil governor, the commanding
officer of the department is, by the laws of
California ex officio civil governor of the
country; and the instructions from WashingIon
were based on the provisions ot these
laws. This subject has been misrepresented,
or at least misconceived, and currency given
to the impression that the government of
the country is still military. Such is not
the fact. The military government ended
with the war ; and what iemains is the civil
government recognised in the existing laws
of California."
Now, that rests on the doctrine which
has been put forward here, that the Mexican
laws are in force in the territories. But,
so far as I can learn, there was no such law as
that proclamation appeals to. In this same
| volume is contained a digest of these laws;
and I will read one section which belongs to
this case, and I believe decides it:
" In temporary default of the governor,
another shall he named ad interim, in
the same manner as the proper one. If
the default should be of short duration, the
senior (rnasantiguo) lay member of the de
| partmental legislature shall take charge of the
I government, as he shall in like manner do
during the interval which ir.ay take place
between the default of the government proper,
and the appointment of his successor ad
Then, sir, it was the oldest member of
their legislature who became Governor ex
officio, when the office was vacant It waj
the oldest member of the departmental legislature
who should have succeeded. If, indeed,
the civil government which pre-existed
the acquisition of that territory by the United
States continued, why should not the
Mexican governor have resumed his duties
with the restoration of peace ? With their
laws in force, and their officers restored to
their functions, American emigrants would
have realized the full force of this doctrine.
But here, sir, is proot of the fallacy of
the whole foundation of his argument for the
supremacy of Mexican laws. No one then
relied upon it?no one has yet been willing
to lollow his argument to the conclusion
to which it leads. Else, why was not the
legislature of the department of California
called together ? The thing has received
life from political incubation here.
Bu' the Senator from Massachusetts as- .1
sum d another position which I wish to notice.
He stated, in exsct opposition to all
those geographical tacts which 1 have presented,
that if we had the power tp arnu?$a

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