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Weekly national intelligencer. [volume] (Washington [D.C.]) 1841-1869, April 06, 1850, Image 6

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House or RiriESKXTATtria, Mabcii 9, 1850.
The House being in Committee of the Whole on the state
of the Union, on the President'* Message transmitting the
Constitution of California?
Mr. 8TANLY said. This hour-rule, Mr. Chairman,
compels ua to economize time very closely, and cinsolidate
ideasas much as possible, b will try and do so, that I may
not write out any thing more than 1 shall say.
I wish to say a few plain things in a plain way. I wish
to s?y a little for Buncombe?not only the western, but the
eastern Buncombe which I represent; and, if honorable gen
Itemed are not desirous to hear this, I advise them to take
themselves, on this rainy day, to a more c >mfortable place
ban this. I intend most of whit I say for my constituents,
have not spoken before, Iccause I thought when matters of
such vast magnitude were involved, we ought to wait, and
near what the people at home have to say of them. Now, [
leel prepared not merely to express my own opinions, but
those also of my honest constituents. 1 hope to say nothing
ottensive to any gentlemen ; certainly, I have no such desire.
1 ttiall most carefully avoid to strike the first blow. If I am
assailed, I must take care of raysilf in the best way I may ;
and now to come right at it.
I have heard a gnat deal said here, and read much recent
ly, cf encroachment on the South?aggressions on the
South; and though I know we have cause in some respects
to complain of the conduct of a portion of our Northern peo
ple, I cannot include the whole North in the just censure due
to the couduct of the aggressors. I have attentively watched
the debate here and in the Senate. I have looked at the par
ty newspapers of the day, and I have been brought to the
aettied belief?yea, conviction?that much of the hue and cry
u caused by a malignant wish to embarrass the Administra
tion, add to build up the party wfcom tbe people hurled from
? ... ,n November, 1848. Many of the speeches here, re
Wnve-taUie admission of California, are maiked by unkind
ahusion to the President, and sometimes improper and furi
ous, though feeble, aspersions as to his motives.
It seemed to me that if gentlemen, from the South espe
cially, believed our peculiar institutions were in danger, they
would desire to produce harmony of feeling?to speak calm
ly, as to brethren in the midst of a common danger?that they
would try and produce united action. But, instead of mani
festing such a disposition, the AdminUtraiion is ruthlessly
assailed, and the Whig party fiercely denounced. For ex
amples of these party speeches, I refer to that of tbe gentle
man from Mississippi, (Mr. Dhow*,) ai.d of the gentleman
from Maryland, (Mr. McLane,) who, on this matter, made
a party specch, and tried, as he did before the House was or
ganized, to blow his boatswain's whistle, and pipe all hands
on his side to duty. There were other speeches of a like
chat actor. I want to show that this agitation?this attempt
to excite alarm?is now, as it was last summer, in the South
ern States, for party purposes. I believe I can show it.
In 1837, when Mr. Van Buren was President, an aboli
tion petition, presented by a gentleman from Vermont, I think
produced a great tumult here. A Southern meeting was held
in a committee-room down stairs. Patton's resolution, which
rejected abolition petitions, was the fruit of that meeting.
Presenting this petition was one of Mr. Calhoun's "encroach
^an Buret's friends found it necessary to sus
tain him, as a "Northern man with Southern principles,"
and then he made this abolition excitement the platfomi for
his election to the Presidency. In vain did the W?fes at
'k I1""6 warn Stfutham country he would be a traitor
that his past life had shown he was unsound upon the ques- j
tton of slavery. No matter what should be the consequence
to the South, his game was to be played. In 1838, when
Mr. v\ oodbury was in Van Buren's cabinet, and was engag
ed in that interesting co respoi dence to his subtrrasurers, Mr.
Atherton, ol New Hampshire, who was called the prince of
humbugs, introdured bis wooden nutmeg, Joughfaced, chiv
alry resolutions. A caucus was held, in which Southern Van
Burea Demociats sat side by side with the worst anti-n/averi/
men, from which secret caucus ail the Southern Whigs were
excluded; and these resolutions, then denounced as Janus
faced and double-meaning, were the hybrid offspring of that
caucus. These resolutions were to quiet agi'ation. I de
nounced them, and refused to vote for them, and I was sus- j
taincd at home. They were also denounced, if I mistake nut, ?
by other Southern gentlemen, as betraying the South.
When General Harrison was nominated, he was denoun
ced as an abolitionist, Mr. Clay was an abolitionist, and Mr. j
Van ?,*Jrcn'8 doughfaces were the frirnds and " allies of the I
South." I hope the race of doughfaces is extinct. They ,
were a miserable set of beings?;a?re puppe's of Van Buren, '
anti-slavery men at home, allies of the South here. Now J
and then, one is alive, mourning f >r tte lost spoils, and edit- '
ing a paper that tries to alarm the ?outh by the old song of
1838: " The Whigs are abjlitionu-ts." Once we were told
there are no Democratic abolitionists at the North. Now how
changed ! Even in the Senate, a meuber of that holy (Mr.
Clkmkss, of Alabama, a Dein crat, on the 17th January
1850) said:
I said the people of the Sou h had beer. hsretnfore labor
ing under the delusion that the Northern Democrats were their
friends. I said it was a delusion, and I was glad to have an
opportunity of explaining it to them. God deliver me from
friends us the A orthern iJeniocrats ' I would r cither trust
%\ orthern' H fugs to-day ! 1 hey commenced the game earlier
and have not to go ?o lar to get in a proper position. Look at
the resolutions ol Democratic Legislatures, and the messages
of Democratic Governors, and the resolutions adopted by
Democratic conventions, and (hen tell me about Northern
Democrats bting the friends of the South." '
Mr. Calhoun, too, thinks all the Northern people are
"more or less hostile to us." Sir, I will not admit that
either of tbe gieat parties of the North, as such, are hostile
to the South. Some members of each are hostih?are fana
tical i but the great body of both parties at the North, I can
not believe, arc traitors to the constitution anJ the Union.
And, sir, it affords me pleasure to say, that when I hear bold
and manly sperchee, such as those made by the gentlemen
from Illinois (Mr. Bisskll) and from Indiana, (Mr. Fitch)
I honor their intrepidity?I feel that the Union i* safe. The
time is passed, I hope, when I can be unjust to a patriot be
cause be differs with me in poliiicai opinions. My inter
course with members of the Democratic party in my own
State Legislature, removed many prejudices ; niy intercourse
with gontlemen of that party here has proved that many of
them are true to the Union ; and, upon such questions as
those now utiderdiscussion here, I shall be proud to be allowed to
tender them the right band of fellowship, and to acknow
ledge them as worihy laborers ui a common cause. But I
speak not hare of the doughfaces?(he men who, for party
purposes, agitate the country that they may win tbe spoils
of office. I haJ rather meet abolitionists'here than such
men?if they can be called so. No ; I would say with a
slight alteration of one of Canning's verses:
"Give me the avowed, erect, and raanlj foe:
Open, I can meet, perhaps may turn hi a blow ;
ltut of all the plagues, great llearen, thy wrath can tend,
Save, oh save me, from a .doughface friend !"
But, sir, to pursue my argument. In proof of the charge
I make that there is a desire to produce agitation for party
purposes, I beg attention to a short extract from the " Union"
newspaper (Democratic) of tLis city. I call the attention of
my honest Democratic colleagues to thin. It. the " Union"
of February 14, 1850, I find the following
" Thk Souther* Whios havh provkd themsklvbs to
isstitutiows. Iter thk pkkikht is no timk for CUIMITA
TI KS," fclC.
"No time for crimimtior.!" Then why dcai in it> " Pa
triots of all parties !" But, as the Northern Whigs are coase
|i'?>r>ly denounced as aU il.tioiiists, a;id the &uulA"-n Whigs
" eneinieb of the South," who are >he " all part;^ 1" Those,
I tuppoae, who vote for the " regular nom nees of the Demo
cratic p?r"y ! '*
My Democratic colleagues, I know, cai.uot justify such
coi.duct. 1 will not descend to crimination ; but v.hji an ar
gument ! If tho whole N? r;h are ho.-tile to the S^uth, and if
the Siuthtirn Whigs are " the worslenemit s of the South and
So jthern institutions," what are t > become of those Southern
t-iaten in which the Whigs have the majority '
lit sides this extract, j jst quvted,, there are others of like
character, tine of wh ch wai read to us yjaterdaj by the g< n
tleman from Florid*, (Mr. Lahllj..)
In the Union of FVbiuary 38, 18?0, la the kaJi'g edito
r.jl aiticln, we are told :
" The alliance of Northern Abolition-Federalists and South
era slavcholding Whigs has attempted to prostrate the Demo
cratic [Mi ty of the North, who stood for half a century furuU
by the compromises of the constitution, which protected
South' rit instltu'ions, and it has succeeded in compelling the
Northern Demos acy to moiiift its positions is hklvtio:*
No "time for crimirntion '" and the Northern Dtincracy
has "modified its pos ti*n How > alliance with the
u'o ?litionists ' There are other charge.i of like character in ihii<
a.. i other papers which I htve no lime to read.
Sir, is this no proof of the design to agitate for pirty eflT-ct >
!? piovos that now, as in 1833, it is what my collesguo t'rwrri
t'? tiuncombe district culled it, "a game." In his sj eech in
1344, iny c >lleagoe, (Mr. Cliwg*.ij*,) as reported in the
Appendix to the Ucngttm<ional Globe, 28th Congress, fint
semion, uf<m?d to the f.?rt?
" 1 hat although there Were near eighty D mocrafff mem
bers from the trie States in the House of Represents! ivi *,
? iily thirteen, * wi'h all possible coaxing,' voted lor the rule.
How is it with the Southern wing of the party ? Its members
make most ^vehement speeches in favor of the rale; d<cU'e
tSnt ti.e Union will be dissolved if it is abolished ; and charge
?i high treason all opposition to it. They are especially ve
hement in their dennncutiona of me, and desire to make the
impression that its loss, if it should be rejected, is mainly to be
attributed to my speech against it.'' ? ? ?
" The g'liie wlneh they have been playing off, is seen
through by every body here, an t it is getting to be understood
u the country."
I Just as the game which the Bobadils arc playing off now is
uudentoxl, and I adopt the language of my colleague in what
follow*. I think it was tiue of the party to whom it was ap
plied then, in 1844, and especially true now of those of the
South who wish disorder should reign, and of the one-idea,
] fanatical Wiluaot proviso men of tne North. Hear these
! words:
I 44 The game wh they have been playing off is seen through
j by every body here, and it is getting to be understood in the
; country. There was a time when gentlem-n, by giving them- ,
; sell sirs, and talking largely of Southern rights, in connexion
with this subject, were able to give themselves consequence at
home ; hut that day lias p*ssed. Its mock tragedy has degen
erated into downright farce, and nobody will be humbugged
much longer in this way. But the matter it important in one
respect. Nothing could more fully show the utter profligacy
of the party, its total wat.t of all principle, than the course cf
its Northern and Southern wings on this question. They,
hope, however, bv thus spreading their nets to drag in votes
in both sections of the Union, and thereby get into power."
Ym, sir, there's the true secret of this agination?" get
into power"?"to the victors belong the spoils"?adhere to
Dem ocratic nominations^ even for doorkeeper, or the granite
doughfaces will let the Union be dissolved.
I concur in what my colleague said of this agitation in
1844, and especially in a note to his speech, in which he says
"A certain prominent Southern politician, seeing that hia
course had rendered him unpopular generally, *eized upon
this question to create excitement between the North aud th?
South, and uuite the South thereby into a political party, of
which he expected to be the head. There are also individuals
at the North, who, though prol?ssing opposition to the rule, are,
in my opinion, really desirous of its continuance, as a meant
of producing agitation in that quarter. A portion ot them en
tertain the nope that the excitement there may attain a suffi
cient height to enable them successfully to iuvade the institu
tions of the South ; but the larger number are simply seeking
to produce a strong prejudice in the popular mind in the free
States against Southern institutions and men, on which to
base a political party strong enough to control the ujjicts of
the country."
Now, sir, I think a prominent Southern politician is playing
the same game, and the one idea Wilmot proviso men are alili
trying to control the office* of the country. Some want to get to
Congress, or to stay there, or to be placed at t,.e head of
some important committee, by voting for the " favorite can
didate " of the party.
It was a " game" when my colleague reirred to it, it id
a "game now." I fear my colleague does not remember this
apeech '
Mr. Clivomak said, yes.
Mr. Stahlt. Well, i>ii, I will print the extract from the
speech of 1844, ai.d let it go to Buncombe, with the late
speech of my colleague. '
Yes, sir, the "game" is still to be played, and now the
"refusal to surrender fugitive slaves" is another Northern
aggression complained of. I admit the Northern States have
acted badly in thii instance. Both parties have played the
game too far of trying to get abolition votes. I cannot see
how any man, who has sworn to support the constitution can
refuse to pass any law that may be deemed necessary. The
conduct of the Northern States in this respect is admitted by
si?me of their own citizens to be without excuse. No one
condemns it more decidedly than I do ; and I believe, from all
I have heard, this abuse will be remeJied.
But still the noite made about this is part of the " game,"
part of the " party operations." One would suppose from
speeches made here that no slaves had i scaped from 'he South
until Cass's defeat.
But to the recent history of this. In 1838, shortly after
the Atherton tesolutions wore passed, a worthy gentleman
from Kentucky, then a member of this House, introduced the
resoluti >n I hold in ray hand, which I will print:
" Mr. Calhoo.*, of Kentucky, moved that the rules in rela
tion to (he order of business be suspen led, to enable him to
move a resolution ; which was read at the Clerk's table, and
is in the words following, viz ;
" Jte*olved, That the Committee on tlie Judiciary be in
structed to report a bill making it unlawful for any person to
aid fugitive slaves in escaping from th'jir owners, and provid
ing for the punishment in the courts of the United States of all
persons who may b? guilty of such offence.
" And that they be further instructed to report a bill making
it unlawful for any person in the non-slaveholding States of tins
Union to use auy means to induce slaves from their owners,
and providing for the punishment, in the courts of the United
States, of all persons who may be found guilty of such offence.
" And on the (question, ? Shall the rules be suspended for
the purpose aforesaid V it passed in the negative : Yeas 90,
nays 107."
Among the nays wera Mr. Alherton, and fifty-four other
Northen ?'allies of the South."
Now, sir, is it not singular that, from that period down
to the present, as far as my know I dge extends,' n? effort has
been made until General Taylor's election to demand addi
tional legislation upon this subject ?
If any such effort has been made, I do not know it. Were
there no fugitive slaves since 1838 ? Well, Mr. Van Buren
was President three years after that, and no bill passed i'or
fugitive slaves. In the iwenty-ftfth Congress, from 1S37 to
1839, Mr. Polk was Speaker. From 1839 to 1811, twenty
sixth Congress, Mr. Huwteh, of Virginia, wasSpeaker. A
Democratic maj >rity here, and no bill for fugitive slaves
Tyler was President from April, 1841, to March, 1845.
During the first year of Tyler's term, Mr. White, of Kentucky,
was Speaker; and from 1843 to 1845, Mr. Jones, ot Virginia,
was Speaker, and a Democratic mojority here, with a Virginia
President, and no bill for reclaiming fugitive slaves! Then,
frcm March, 1845, to March, 1849, Mr. Po k, a Southern
President, and during two years Mr. Davis, ot Indiana, a
Democratic Speaker,'and still no bill for the reclamation of
fugitive slaves! Nothing said by Virginia members even,
from 1838 till now !
Mr. Vkkaule. Will my honorable colleague allow me
to remind him that before the Presidential canvass, at the first
session of the last Congress, on ihe abduction of a number of
slaves from this District, I raised that question, and delivered
a speech upon that subject'
Mr. Stauj.*. My colleague may have raise! the question
at that lime, but there was no legislative ac ion in this Hi.u.<e
on that subject, nor any attempt to procure any that I know
of. And my colleague raised the question, when there was
great excitement here, on account of one act of outrage. He
did not still try to procure action on the part of Congress, to
enable the Southern people to recover their slaves.
Mr. Batlt. Will the gentleman allow me to put him
right on a matter of fact *
Mr. Staslt. If not out of my time.
Mr. Bay Li unJer6tood the gentleman to say, that from
1838, the time of Atherton's resolution, to this time, nothing
has been said by Virginia members or. the subject of the sur
render of fugitive siaves.
Mr. Stawlt. Nothing fjr the action of Congress.
Mr. Batlt. Well, the subject was before the Legisla
ture of Virginia in 1841 and 1842, and it was never brought
before this House, because we came to the conclusion that
the law of 1793 was as r.early perfect as it could be, and that
it only requited that it should be executed In good faith.
Mr. Stawlt. Yes, sir, and y,ou change] your opinion of
that law as soon as Gen. Taylor was electid President. And
I would ask, why legislate further if that law is sufficient ?
We cannot create "good faith" by act of Congress. I admit,
Mr. Chairma.*, that Virginia is still a greut and glorious Com
monwealth. She has much to be proud of in the past history
of this country. She needs no eulogy from me, and, though
I must censure and shall ridicule the condjct of sjmo of her
public men, I shall speak respectfully of the Slate. Many of
my dearest friends and nearest relatives reside within her bor
ders, and they have, I believe, d >ne no discredit to her, in
peace or war. But, sir, the Old Dominion is too much in
the habit of taking care of the affairs of the General G.<vern
ment, and the debates in her Legislature are not as important
in the eyes of the country as ihey are to the chairman of the
Committee of Ways and Means, (Mr. Batlt.) And 1
should be glad to know why, if the Itepresentative? frcm Vir
ginia thought the !,iw of 1793 sufficient, did the geml man
from Virginia (Mr. MkaRb) introduce h? r.solution, soon
after Gen. Taylor's election, proposing to instruct the Com
mit'ee on the Judiciary to report a bill | roviding for the ap
prehension of fugitive .-laves !
So, I r?peat, from 1838 to 1848?until ljocember, 1848,
when the gentleman from Virginia (Mr. Mkadk) offered his
resolution?all the Southern Democ acy, now eying out at
this drtadful aggression, never moved a linger to proiure any
law relative to fu^i'ive slaves'! No, nir, they were *'a-i mute
?is a mouse in a cheese"?yes, sir, a* a first family Virginia
mouse in an English che-*e The rea on was, ns my c >1
league (Mr. Vknable) said, io soma poor verses quoted by
him in his speech?
" The laurels were fairly portioned,
The spoils, were fairly ?olu."
Mr. Vimaii. The "landt," I said.
Mr. Sta.il*. I accept the correcti ttl; it was printed
"laurels," but my colleagu" is light; the Southern De
mocrat, whatever of "spoils" they got, won no " laurels"
during the last ten}ears with their Nortfrrn allies.
No, sir ; the truth is, Gash was a " useJ up man Tx rion
waselec'ed , ihe ""polls" were gon ?, the cohesive powei was
lost. Truly, as Job said, " Doth the wild -iss bray when he
h ith grass ' or lo?eth the ox over his fodder
I have watched the progress of the d<bat^ in the Senate,
and Ion the pub!i?hid speeches in the newspapers I fice a re
spectabl-j Senator from Virginia (Mr. Masok) said he wanted
the bill acud on "axiom an practicable," but bad "little
hope it would aH"? rd the remedy it is intended to afford "it
defe ids upon the loyalty of the people to whom it is directed."
Another Senator) from Sou'h Carolina, (Mr. Butler,)
-rod " he had no very great confidence that this lull will sub
set ve the t nds which seem t > l>e contemj.l iti d by Why,
t^en, I ai-k, so xealously urge the pnwage of it ' One of
;he? Sena ora (Mr. Mahou) al-.o intimited that it might be
come necessary for the States whose citizens lost negroes " to
nitke r< pruals on the ci'rxens of the Sta'c offending 1 Now
this, it seams to me, would be but a poor way of doing justice
to our ci'ixena. If one rogue in Ohio or Pennsylvania steals
a negro, we are to take the wagon-horse of some honest old
faimer, who lived hundreds of miles from the thief! Will
cot tiiia produce civil war' Will it enable ua to recover fu
gitive slaves >
Now, air, I think I have proved that this new born, zeal fjt
legislation to enable ua to recover fugitive alavea, ia ail
owiog to the defeat of General (Jam.
Well, air, among other reaaona given why waahould think
of diaaolution, ia the fact that the Southern State* are an
noyed by the "agitation of aboiitioniata." The Southern
Address aiys, I think, it commenced about the year 1835.
Ft commenctjj, air, before the year 1787. The Quakera have
for more than a hundred years been opposed to alavery. In
1671 Georse Fox advocated emancipation. But the aacrea
give agitation consisted in sending abjliiion petitions ; ami 1
remember well, before the repeal of the "twenty first rule,"
Southern gentlemen *aid if that rule should be repealed, and
thece petitions received, the Union would be dissolved. My
colleague (Mr. Cunuma>) had the boldness to vote against
he twenty-firel rule. I commend him for it. But he was
denounced by various Southern gentlemen?by Mr. A. V.
Brown, afterwards Governor of Tennessee, Mr. Cobb, of
Georgia, our Speaker, Mr. Stiles, of Georgia, and by Mr.
R. M. Saunders, of North Carolina. Some extracts ot their
speeches are before me, and I will print them, to show them
how much mistaken they were. Mr. Bhows, of Tennessee,
was arguir.g against making the petitions " the subject of re
Terence, report, and debate iu this hall." "Our safety," said
he, "depends upon it." He begged the "real friends" of
the South, if they could not altogether exclude those petitions,
not to refer them for debate, <Scc. And he added :
" The South will hold no man guiltless who shall go one
inch beyoud the right of petition. He must answer for every
fire that nitij be kindled und lor every drop of blood that may
be shed. \es, sir; I will say to the gentlenen from New
York and from North Carolina, (Mr. Clissmax,) if this
House shall go one inch beyond that, they may liave to stand
answerable for the shattered and broken fragments of the
Union itself."?See Appendix to Cony. Globe, *8th Congress,
ist session.
Mr. Corb, of Georgia, after complimenting the Northern
Democracy for their devotion to the intereats of the South?
for their ** sincere friendship"?referred to the fact that aome
of the Northern Democracy were abandoning the rule, on ac
count of the opposition of some few Southern members to it,
ar.ii be said :
" Thus it is that the defection of our Northern friends is at
tributable to our own divisions. Let the fact, then, be pub
lished to the country, that the responsibility ot this measure
may rest upon those who justly deserve it?upon whom aa in
dignant and outraged people may place the seal of their con
demnation. I trust, nowever, that no such division will be
found to 'ixist. No Southern Democrat, lam sure, willaban
uoh Iiii post i and but few, if any, Southern Whigs Mill be
found following in the wake of the gentleman from Nor.h Ca
rolina."?.Ippendix to Cong. Globe, Wth Congress, 1 stten.
I have an extract before me from the speech of Mr. Stiles,
of Georgia, which I will print. Mr. Stiles spoke unler ox
cit?ment, and very'wildly. It was made in the Hmse of
Representative?, January 28 and 30, 1844, on the wenty
fifth rule, relating to abolition petitions. In replying to the
remarks of Mr. Clingman, (Appendix to Congressiontl Globe,
26th Congress, 1st session, page 262,) Mr. Stiles spoke of
he constitution as a citadel, a fortress, and this rule wai a " bar
rier;" and he said :
" While that remains, the fortress stands ; when it is gone,
the fortress falls. That barrier ean be removed onljby some
one within. The fortress can be taken, the cilklel lost,
only by treacftery in the camp. I wi)l pursue this limile no
further. But let me tell the member from North Carolina,
that if this rule is lost trom the relation iu which he itands to
and the part which he has borne in this transaction, ht may go
home to his constituents, and to his grave, covered <rith the
unenviable immortality of having betrayed the infcereits of the
South?in having surrendered the constitution of his country."
Mr. R. M. Saunders, of North Carolina, thoight with
others whose remarks I have just quoted. In arguirg against
the argument that to receive petitions wjuld slence the
"clamor about the right of petition," he said :
" They might as soon expect to extinguish the conflagration
by adding fuel to the flames. I repeat, then, there s but one
alternative?rejection without action, or reception aid action.
There is no middle ground can satisfy those who art resolved
to press this matter, whatever its consequences.?Jlppendix
to Cong. Globe, 28th Congress, ls? session, January, 1844,
page 85.
How much mistaken ! Since the repeal of the rule, how
seldom we see an abolition petition !
Mr. Saunders appeared to have been sincerely distressed.
He appealed to the doughfaces in tin extract before me:
" Mr. Saunders 3aid : I ask the gentlemen from Maine, if
there be any here, who have hitherto stood by us, why they
should now give way ' 1 turn to our friends from Connecti
cut, ami ask them why they should yield ? If I appeal in vain,
I turn to those by whom I know the appeal will be answered?
by patriotic New Hampshire, whose sous, like her granite
t basis, have hitherto breasted the storm; they, I know, will
not give way. So I call upon our friends from the Keystone
State not to surrender because a single soldier in the South
has deserted us on this trying occasion."?.appendix to Vony.
Globe, 1%th Cow*. 1st session. ?
How much mistaken, I say again, these gentlemen were!
Mr. Cl\j always argued, Receive the*e petition*, and much
of this clamor will ceasa. The result shows he was right.
When I had the Innor of being in Congress in 1339, while
the twenty first rule was in force, I do not think I exaggerate
when I *ay that, during the ptriod of three or four months,
we had what were called abolition petitions presented here,
signed by more than one hundred thousand men and women.
Like tbe chamomile tlower, " the more it is trodden upon, the
faster it growsthis right of petition, when denied, was
most earnestly asserted. How stands the fact now ? . We
have been heie more than three months, and not one single
abolition petition his been presented. Hence the Union will
not be dissolved because of this aggression. This aggression
has ceased. No, sir; there is no danger to this Union from
any such cause. In this happy land the people will occa
sionally be guilty of some extravagant conduct. We have a
numerous population who are not always employed. What
was said by one of England's great poets of her people can
with truth be said of o^rs :
" Whose otilv grievance is excens of ease,
Freedom their pain, and plenty their disease."
When they cannot war against the twenty-first rule they
will form peace societies. Noble motives prompt them in this.
These agitators, comprising a small portion of our Northern
people, not only seek distinction by their noisy opposition to
slavery, but they contend, among other things, for what they
term "the rights of women.". I do not know what are tho
rights they claim, whether they think women should vote,
should come to Congress, &c. ; but if they give to the New
England women more rights than those oar North Carolina
women have, they will not have a republican Government.
Some of these agitators do not believe any judge has a right
to administer an oath ; they do not acknowledge the authority
of any magistrate. Such people deserve our pity or con
tempt. They ought not to be reasoned with ; denunciation,
like the storm upon the traveller, but makes them fold the
cloak of prejudice closely around them and go on with more
energy ; forbearance towards their follies, as it did with their
tight of petition, like the influences of the sun, will drive
them to the shades of retirement.
But complaint is made against the North because they will
not stop the agitation and nggrea*i>n of these fanatics. How
can they stop them? New York cannot quiet the disturbances
of her anti-renters. A mob in the ci'y of New York last
year, because of s tme misunderstanding between two actors,
nearly destroyed a valuable building and caused the death of
many persons. Massachusetts, some years ago, could not,
in her peaceful borders, prevent the destruction of a convent.
Dorrism nearly produced civil war in Rhode Island. Phila
delphia has had achurch destroyed and an abolition hail burnt
duwn by her slaid population. j
If these terrible outbreaks cannot be prevented, how can
the Northern people suppress fanaticism ' And yet we are
told by gentlemen the Union will be dis-olved unless thiaagi
tion ceases. Who can reason with fanaticism }
" You may as well go stand upon the beach.
And bid the main flood 'bate his muni height ;
You may us well use question with the woTf,
Why he hath made 'lie ewe bleat for the lamb ;
You may as well forbid the mountain pines
To wag their high tops, and to make no noise,
When they are hutted with the gus s of Heaver.,"
an try to suppress fanaticism by reason and by law.
We give more importance to these agitators than they de
serve, fly supposing that all who are opjtosed to slavery are
disposed to interfere with nlavery in the States. It is a great
mistake. Our Quaker*, in North Carolina and elsewhere,
are all opposed to slavery. In 1884, I think, Mr. 1{. M.
Saunders presented one of their petitions here. The Quaker*
in all countries are among our best population. They are
industrious, sober, orderly. They try and do unto others as
they wish others to do unto thorn, but they are no agitstirs.
It is a paitof their religion to oppose slavery. Every y^ar
they express, in mild terms, their opposition to it. I received
from my district, a few diys since, a paper, btforc me, from
one of the b st men I ever knew?a Quaker. It is entitled
? Minutes of the North Carolina Yearly Meeting, held at
New Garden, Goildfurd county, 11th month, 1849." They
send a memorial to the Senate and House of Re^reentativea,
in which they any :
" Your memorialist! further show that they believe them
selvis conscientiously constrained to bear th'.ir testimony
against the u. righteous system of slavery. Many of them have
made j?ecu''iary sacrifices to obtain a quiet c >ns< lence ; and
they respectfully ask Congress to take the subject under de
liberation, and hgislat" tor its amelioration or extinction us
fir as they constitutionally can, for we believe it to be ami*
Christian in practice. Inasmuch as it is at variance wiih the
Divine preempt of 'd ing to others as we would they should
do to us.' We believe it to be anti-rt'publiean,because il does
not accord with the declaration of American independence;
with that self-evident truth that all men arc created equal, and
endowed t>y their Creator with certain inalienable rights; that
among iheae are life, liberty, and tbe pursuit of happiness.
" And we suggest, for your aoniideration, the oropriety of
our Government acknowledging the independence and nation
ality of the Republic of Libei ia, and extending to her the same
comity as other nations.
" Your memorialists and petitioners desire that you may be
guided and influenced in your legislation by that wisdom which
is profitable to direct^whicl. it "rst re, then peaceable,
grutle, and easy to be ent. -.-ated."
Now, thes- men are among our brat citizen*; some of
them were a! ??eboltlei I krow oj.o who emancipated fifty
slaves. It >uld be s ..uxierate estimate to ssy he sacrificed
to bis conscience $36,000. Vet these people would be the
lust to encourage violence. Theee men would not fight; but
in tbe hour of trial, f believe many of ibem would do as
one did in Rhode Island in the Dorr rebellion. He found a
soldier at bis post, exhaaated by fa'igue and want of food.
"Friend," he said, "I cannot uae arms, but I will takecare
of thy musket uutil thou kaat refreshment." Ask theae
men what has been tbe etfect of the agiiatiou of aboliti j^uts,
and they will tell you it has checked emancipation. I contend
that it is wrong lo suppose that tbe great body of oar North*
ern people, who believe slavery to be an evil, as our Quakers
do, are therefore disposed to interfere with the Southern
States, or are "enemies of the South." '
But, to another "aggression on the South." In 1843,
Massachusetts passed resolutions recommending a change in
the constitution of the United States. There commendation
was, that the third clause of the second section of the first
article of the Constitution shuuld be eo changed as to abolish
the representation of tbe Southern States for their slaves.
This proposi'ion was denounced as tending to disunion. A
gentleman from Virginia, (Mr. Gilmer) and one from tiorftb
Carolina, (Mr. Burt) said of it, " a proposition precisely
(similar to that now under consideration was made by the
1 notorious Hartford Convention." I think when that amend
ment is made, others will be made, and disunion will be tbe
inevitable consequence.
But though the Legislature of Maasachusetta did wrong in
this instance, it does not follow tbut while ou? present Con
stitution stands she would interfere with slavery tin the South
ern States. If it evincea a disposition to interfere, it admit*
also the want of powtr under the Constitution. Our State
Legislature* sometimes do silly things. They resolve one
yeai against the resolves of the year before. But I wish to
call the attention of my colleague, (Mr. Clisomav,) who no
doubt regards these Massachusetts resolutions as an Maggres
sion," to some proceedings of the last Legislature of our State.
We bed before us, in the winter of 1848-'49, a proportion to
amend our State constitution. In the gubernatorial canvass
Jf 1848 an issue unwisely was made upon the propriety of
striking out from our State const* utioa a provision which re
quires that all voters for the Senate shall own fifty acres of
land. The Democrats raised the cry of "free suffrage."
The Whig candidate?a most estimable gentleman?was un
derstood to oppose free suffrage. As u?ght have been ex
pected, the Democrat nearly elecVd t?;t;ir candidate in a
State that gave Taylor mora than eight thousand majority
over Cass. But when the proposition was brought forward
to amend cur constitution, some of the members from my col
league's (Mr. Cli soman) district were earnest in advocating
the " whita basis." They probably remembered what my
colleague said in his speech in December, 1847, of the " white
race being superior to the black ? of course a country filled
with the former is more vigorous and prosperous than one
filled with a mixed race."
When the proposition was before the L?gislature, other
amendments were offered beside that relating to " tree suf
That I may be understood, let me s'ate, that by our State
constitution, the House of Commons is composed of members
elected irom the counties " according to their federal p pula
tion." The article set nn to have been copied from the Con
stitution of the United States, which Massachusetts wished to
amend in 1843?the " third clause of the second section of
the first article." One western gentleman proposed in the
North Carolina Legislature :
" And be it further enacted, That the constitution be so
amended as to provide thut the Senate shall hereafter be ap
portioned among the several counties of this Statte, according
to the Federal basis, and the members of the House of Com
mons according to the white population of the State."
For this amendment, forty-one western members voted,
Whigs and Democrats, and among them some of the best
men in our State.
Another gentleman proposed?
11 That in all future arrangement* of Senatorial districts, the
whole numbtft-of white population of the State alone shall be
divided by fifty, and every fiftieth part of the -white population
alone ahull be entitled to a Senator."
Our Sta'e Senators are elccted according to a basis of taxa
Another gentleman?a bolder and truer man is rarely to be
found?proposed an amendment that "the members of the
House of Commons be apportioned according to the white
population of the State"?rejected, yeas 36, nays 66. And
then, just as these political movements are made in the
Northern States, another gentleman from my colleague's dis
trict (Mr. Clixoman) moved that "the words federal popu
lation" bo struck out of the constitution, and "free white
population" be inserted in the stead?rejected, 28 to 66.
This list gentleman, a Democrat, thought he would go be
yond what the Whig member had proposed. Shall these
men be called Abolitionists } No, sir, no; they would be the
first to take up arms, if it were necessary, against them. But
in Massachusetts a proposition of the like character is de
nounced as being " tbe resufc of the wicked designs of ambi
tious agitators and ignorant fanatics." I ask my coileague
(Mr. Clinoman) what shall be said of the " white basis" ad
| vocates in Western North Carolina ' Are thoy agitators ' I
think the people in Eastern North Carolina will ask my col
league to stop agitation at home before he threatens to dissolve
the Union for agi'ation abroad.
i>ow, Air. onairman, tne memoars ot our state Legisla
ture who made these propositions are not fanatics. They
are true sons of the old North State. They live in the most
beautiful land that the sun of heaven ever shone upon. Yes,
sir; I have heard the anecdote from Mr. Clay, that a preach
er in Kentucky, when speaking of the beauties of Paradise?
when he desired to make his audience believe it was a place
of bliss?said it was a Kentucky of a place. 8ir, this preach
er had never visited the western counties of North Carolina.
I have spent days of rapture in looking at her scenery of un
surpassed grandeur, in hearing the roar of her magnificent
waterfalls, second only to the great caiaract of the North;
and while I gazed for hours, lost in admiration at the power
of Him who, by his word, created such a country as this,
and gratitude for the blessings he had scattered upon it, I
thought that if Adam and Eve, when driven from Paradise,
had been near this land, they would have thought themselves
in the next best place to that they had left. I could but
think?I hope reverently?of what was told the children of
Israel, by their leader, tbey should have, when fce said :
" For the Lord thy God bringeth thee into a good land, a
land of brooks of water, of fountains and depths, that spring
out of valleys and hills ;
"A land of wheat, and barley, and vines, and fig-trees and
pomegranates ; a land of oil, olive, and honey ; a land wherein
thou shall cat bread, without scarceness ; thou shalt not lack
any thing in it; a land whose stones are iron, and out of whose
hills thou mayest dig-brasj."
And to this country, fot want of a railroad, the East are
strangers. And now, when our patriotio sons at home, for
getting all party calls, are, wi?h united effort, struggling
nobly to build this road, to make us better acquainted, to
build up cities. in the East, to give out farmers a market for
their produce, to stop the tide of emigration, to bind tbe East
and West together in indissoluble bonds of interest and af
fection, our ears are salutec^here with tbe hoarse brawling of
disunion, and we are invited to contemplate the glories of a
Southern confederacy, in which Virginia and South Carolina
are to have great cities, to be supported by the colony or
or plantation of North Carolina !?a Southern confederacy,
in jwhich.the rulers wilt lead us into an unholy crusade, as
far as Vera Cruz, to conquer territory, to give the "sons of
the Presidents " a market!
When the American army was rqoicirg at the surrender
of Cornwall!* at Yorkiown?when the acclamations of our
revolutionary patrio's awl their thanks to Providence were
poured forth from their grateful hearts?it is said that a
Scotchman, whose buliock hail been taken to supply the wants
sT the soldiers, was heard to . bout through the army, " Beef!
bant! beef!" when he was clamoring for the price of his
property. The genius of the illustrious Patrick Henry has
given this mm nn unenviable notoriety. In the minds of the
people of North Carolina the name of John Hook will be as
sociated with these advoraes of disunion nnd civil war.
But the hearts of the great mass of our people of both
parties are right- Our groat railroad must and will t:c built.
In a few yrars, the enlivening sound ul the s'eam whit.de will
be heard in ih? rece?scs of curforosts; beautiful villages will
spring up nmong us, and th<? "little hills thill rcjoice on
every tide;*' the "valleys shall stand so thick with corn that
they shall laugh and sing."
Yes, sir, we will build this road , and with the electro-mag
netic telegrsph, we can communicate new* in a ft w h>urs t?<
places distant hundreds of miles. And let insurrection take
place, our gallant mountain boy.'?a id among the first of
th?m the "white basis" m-mbers of our Legislature will
c?me down l>y thousands to our aid. They will come " as the
winds come when navies are stranded."
But I mus' hurry on. Inexorable, reloaded limo will not
?tsy his march, even to Lear me speak of the future glories
af North Carolina.
I come now to another reason assigned liy some why we
should think of disunion. It was aim referred to in th^ Souh
?rn address. It is the " notorious Go'.t's res >lution " Now,
whai is it} I have n copy liefore m". In D remSer, lfMSt,
Mr. Ojtt ofT-red this resolution. It hsd to Hou'hern gsn
tlemen an offensive pieamtile, "of the tr.iffic in hoa?n
being"," but the resolution is as followa :
" Reiohttt, That a Committee for the District of Colombia
be instructed to report n hill hs so in as practicable, ]L*?l?iUnii>g
the tlave-trade in said District."
The re?olution was adopt*!, afterward* recousi lered, and
no action I believe was ever afterwards had upon it. And
here, by the wty, I wnh 1 could have sonv j?ood reason why
the Southern Democracy voted for the pre?ious question with
the abo.itionia's on this resolution ' 'JVhy wa* action de
aired, except for agit ilion > But this * the Uott r. solution?
thia ia thi resolution which routed ihe South, and brought
abrftit the Southern Convention which isaut-d the Sou1 hern
Addresses. It proposes simply to abolish the slave-trade in
this District.
III understand correctly the opuuoaa of Mr. Cm, in hi*
recent and former speeches, be baa expressed bis willingness
that the slave-trade in tbia District should be abolished. BuC
becauae be waa a candidate for tbe. Presidency, be baa been
called an abolitioniat But I have strong Southern auibority
to support Oott'd resolution. A diatinguiabed Senator from
Alabama?one very worthy of tbe place be adorns, a gentle
man of ability, of dignified senatorial deportment, respected
by all who know him, and I am proud to say, a native of my
own tiiate, (Mr. Kisg)?in a recent debate in the Senate
used very strong language upon this subject. This gentleman
bad so good a character that even John Tyler conferred office
on him without injuring him. He said, very properly, "he
aaked no act of Congress to carry slavery any where." The
Senator is oppoeeJ to the Wilmot proviso, as I am ? and I
concur with tern entirely in what he says of abolishing alavery
in tbia District. I have a* extract from his remarks, which
I will print, not having time to read them.
Mr. Kixo, of Alabama, said :
"That whether the Congress of the United States has, under
the Constitution, the right to abolish slavery in the District of
Columbia or not, iO would be as gross a violation of good faith
towards Maryland and Virginia as if it had been expressly
prohibited in the Constitution, as long as those Sutes remained
siaveholding States.
44 With regard to uhat it called tSe tlave traile, I /wit* never
teen the day ?and Senator! are aware of it, I presume, frtm
the courte I have pursued heretofore?when I wat not -willinr
to patt a taw for the purpost of breaking up thue miserable
estMithmentt that exitt under the very eyet o} Congrett ittef
and are to offentive to many gentlemen, who feel perhapt more
tentitive on the tubject than I do. I am Jree to tay that I am
the very lust man who would be willing to encourage tuch et
Did Golt's resolution propose to do any thing elite bat
"biesk up these miserable establishment And yet, if this
is done, the Nashville Convention will be instructed to pre
pare for a dissolution of the Union ! And a bill was reported
from a committee, I learn of the last Congress, of which the
gentleman from Mississippi (Mr. Bhown) was a member, to
abolish the slave-trade in this District. Again, I say, sir,
that had General Cass been clscted President we should not
have heard all this outcry.
Here allow me to say, sir, that no man in his senses be
lieves Congress will ever be guilty either of the outrage or the
folly of abolishing slavery in this District, excepting, of course,
those fanatics who think the constitution is an "agreement
with helL" If any sensible man ever thought of it, I would
ask him cut bono ? Would it not inevitably lead to the abo
lition the gentleman from Massachusetts (Mr. Mars) spoke
of? Would it not separate husband and. wife, parent and
chiM A- Any owner of a slave can take him out of the District
when he pleases. And whafwtic lube the rendition ef tbr^e
free negroes now married to slaves ? I do not believe we witf
ever have a President who would approve such a bill. If
Mr. Van Buren were President, I would trust even him ; and,
although he had pledged himself to veto the bill, I believe he
would do it.
Such an act would justly be regarded by the Southern
States as a declaration of hostility on the part of the North,
and they would act accordingly.
[Here Mr. Staklt was interrupted by Mr. HriLiAKn, of
Alabama, which led to some controversy between Mr. Hil
liard and Mr. Stanly.]
Mr. Chairman, when I was interrupted by the gentleman
from Alabama, I was speaking, I think, of the aggression on
the South.
\ee, the South ban been terribly oppressed. Out of the
sixty years since the constitution was framed, the South has
had the Presidents all of the time, except twelve years and
one mouth. We have had our share of other high offices.
How is it now ? In the midst of this formidable invasion of our
righte, when the abolition'sU are so strong, we have elected
a Southern Piesident, who was said to be the owner of more
than two hundred slaves, and that, too, against the nominee*
of the Baltimoie Convention, when it was said " there was
no slaveholder on their ticket."
We have a Southern Speaker, with whose manner of dis
charging the duties cf the chair I have no complaint to make.
And what a spectacle his election presented ! So strong was
party .'eeling with some gen'lemen from the non-slaveholding
States, that when the isaue was a Northern or a Southern
Speaker, they refused to vote for a Northern Speaker. This
speaks volumes ; party feelings must always influence us,
must always be felt by the North and West, and Southern
votes will always be wanted.
A majority of the Cabinet are fiom slaveholding States. In
the Supreme Court we have five to four. In the army and
navy, we have our full share. Of tl}? foreign ministers we
have more than our share. But s ill " Gott's resolution," or
some other aggression, troubles us.
Let me record another instance of Northern liberality.
When Gen. Harrison died, Mr. Tyler became President.
Mr. 8outhard, of New Jersey, was chosen President of the
Senate; he died, and did the North practice aggression on
us' Did they elect a Northern President of the Senate?
No; they elected a distinguished Senator (Mr. Manoum)
from my own State.
Mark, Mr. Chairman, my argument is not to defend the
abolitionists or agitators, but to prove that the North, the
great body of the people, are not enemiea to the South. And,
to pursue this argument, how did the votes stand in the last
Presidential election f
I have not time to make a very accurate statement, but this
statement is nearly correct.
In what are called the free States :
Ta)lor received Qfi5,646 votes.
Cuts <lo 812,855 "
Van Buren do '<.91,678 "
In the slaveholding States :
Taylor and Fillmore received .435,378
Cass ami Butler do. 409,436
Van Uuren do '299
Whole number ofvotea, (excluding South Carolina,
whose electors are chosen by her Legislature)... 2,875,292
Majority of Union men over Free-Soilers and Abolitionists,
only two millions five hundred and eighty-three thousand
three hundred and fifteen?more than two millions five hun
dred thousand !
Taylor's majority, although he was reported to be the owner
of two hundred slaves, wa* more than one hundred thousand.
And this majority in the non-slaveholding States, where he
was opposed, by General Cuss, wbo is reported to have said
he thanked God he never owned a slave, said he never would,
and prayed for the abolition of slavery !
Is this hostility to the South ? No, sir; the true secret is,
the spoils are gone; some editors are turned out of office,
oihers are disappointed, o-, to use the words of my colleague,
(Mr. Clinomajt,) in an extract before me, as reported in the
Appendix to the Congressional Glob?, 28.h Congress, firbt
session, page 285, he said of the Democra ic party, what I
would say of the dough-faces ?
" It will be found, on examination, this party is governed
by seven principles?as John Randolph is reported to hare
said of Thomas Ritchie?the five loaves and the two fishes.
Or, in the language of Jon* C. Calhopn, late a distinguished
leader of this party, rtmarkabie for his powers of generali
zation and condensation, and who was thereby enabled to ana
l)ze, simplify, and reduce to a single element these various
principles, it is the ' spoils of party,' held together by the co
hesive power of public plunder."
And here, sir, let me say another word to my colleague,
While I think of it.
I hope he will pause in his hasty course until he hears fr. m
the pecplo in the eastern part of the State. In case of civil
war they are more likely to be injured by insurrection and by
foreign furs than my colleague's constituents.
According to the census of 1810, as nearly as I can ascer
tain, in the district of my colleague, (Mr. Outlaw,) from
the northeastern counties, tbo population was?
White. Slave.
42,458 ..36,305
Wilmington district. 49,486 33,238
Washington district 49,308 37,665
Now, what u the condition among my colleague's " white
basis" constituents f
Bunc mbe district, (Cmsomas's)? white population,
60,089 ; slave ditto, 9,229.
These eastern districts are on the sra coast. My colleague's
is the mn>t inacccssilile p>:nt to a fortign foe in the United
States. I do not believe, sir, the g -od people he repn-ser.te
are willing to engage in a foreign or civil war for any aggres~
?ion yet committed, and not even to recover fugitive slaves;
and I do not believe my colleague's constituents ever lost a
slave by N?r hern abolitionists. Bail men sometiims steal
our slaves. If that aggression can be stopped by my colleague
he will do us great ter vice.
I hop** to be allowed to speck to my colleague for my con
stituent*, to sp? uk is an Kastern man, and as a slaveholder.
It, in the providence of God, any calamity befalls us on ac
count of our slaves, I shall be among my people L shall not
inquire, as the servant of my friend from Kentucky (Mr.
Mar&hali.) d d, when he told his servant John be wished
him logo to Mexico. " Master," "aid John, after r?flection,
" how far is ihe camp frcm the battle ground f" His master
could not answer satisfactorily, ond John declined to go.
My affections, my inteiest, my duty, all bind me with ho. ks
of steel to my home The gravis of my forefathers, for sev
eral generations, are there; the dearest friends I have on
earth are theie; th.-re I expect to live, and there I hope to
die; and whatever calamity may crews, their fata will be my
fata, ?? their God will be my God."
I wish now, sir, to ?jy a word to ike gentleman from Vir
ginia, (Mr M>*nit,) who did ras tho honor to send me a
copy of his apeech early in the eeeaion.
1 protest, as a Southern matt against the doctrinoi of this
speech, delivered before the gcnileann's constituents in Au
gust, 1849 ; and I think if copies of it were circulated in New
Mexico, and the people uuders'ood the gen It man was an in
flu.mial m in at home, and in Congress, it would be enough
of its If to exclude slavery from that Territory.
Mr. Ami. The gentleman to whom you refer is not in
the House, he is not in the city, he is sirk
Mr. Stahit. I am sorry to boar of the gentleman's ill
ness, though I nboll make no remarks of an offensive charts
tar. If I had beard he had been take a aick shortly after the
delivery of this speech, I should not have been at a loaa to ac
count for hia illness. I am obliged to my colleague for the
motive which prompts the iuterruptioo.
The gentleman (Mr. Miadk) says : " We are no propa
? gandists of slavery ; bad we no slaves, there is not s man
' present who would vote to bring thun among us." I am
glsd to hear the declaration' The gentleman probably con*
curs in opinion with my colleague, (Mr. CiraeifAir,^ when
he said a country filled with the white race " is more vigorous
and prosperous than one filled with a mixed race." My col
league shake i his head , he will find, on examination, I am
right in atating what he said?a sentiment that will answer
better for the bills of Buncombe, than for eastern lowlands,
for negroes thrive in ?omeaparts of our country where whit*
people can hardly live. The bilious Sever it sometimes, in
the lowlands very fatal to the white race. I have beard a
highly intelligent gentleman, and a large slaveholder, siy be
bad never known a negro to die from the bilious fever. But
I should be glad to be informed why the gentleman from Vir
ginia would not bring them among us, M they "elevate our
character ^?a sentiment that meets my hearty condemnation ;
for, if it be true, the "owner of sixty slaves" is more elevated
in his character than the owner ef five; then be who bold#
no negroes caonot he elevated in bis character ! I know a
certain diatrict in the United Slates in wbich it was urged
that a Democratic candidate, "tbr owner of aixty slaves,"
was more worthy of public confidence than a Whig, who did
not own half a dozen ; but it was not argued that the large
giare owner was more "elevated in character" for that reason.
Again, the gentleman from Virginia (Mr. Mxadk) says :
" The situation of Virginia is more sritical than any of ber
sisters. She ha* a slave population of near half a million,
whose value is chiefly dependant on Southern demand
Now, sir, if I understand this, it means that Virginia slave
owners raise negroes to sell. If so, I say it is horrible 10
think of I have spent most of my life among slaveholders?
religious men of all denominations are slaveholders?but I do
not know one man in my district or my Slate who raises ne-'
groea for *? Southern demand"?to sell. I should be ashamed
to own such a constituent.
Again siys the gentleman from Virginia : "Thewhols ci
vilised world is now uniting in a crusade-against American
slavery, even where it now exists*" ,
I do not admit the correctness of this assertion ; but if it be
true, how, I ask, shall we improve our condition by dissolv
ing the Union ? Both the great parties of the country admit
their obligation to stand by the constitution. What will be
the crusade when that constitution ia destroyed ?
Again, says the gentleman from Virginia :
u While it must be admitted that strong objections may be
urged to the institution ot slavery, jet there are advantages
aTsor^Wch. in the opinion many, are full compensation for
the evils attending it. Our past nistory la^jwitrtho faat -
that it elevates the character of the -white mtnu Though we
have been in a numerical minority in the Union for fifty years,
yet during the {greater part of that period we have managed to
control the destinies ot this nation."
The gentleman from Indiana (Mr. Fitoh) has already
commented on this remark, and I have but one word to add.
Are we not now, by our share in the great offices of the re
public, still controlling the destinies of this nation ?
But the gentleman says : " The diffusion of our population
is essential to our very existence."
It may be so in Virginia, but it is not so in North Caro
lina ; if we are let alone, we can manage ours. Is this dif
fusion to go on indefinitely ? If New Mexico is admitted
into the Union, and abolishes slavery, where will the diffu
sion then be > I see no danger to our existence in the ad
mission of New Mexico as a free State. I had rather have
her there than to havt a free Mexican State not under the
influence of our constitution and laws.
But in (he gentleman'* speech he takes another view of the
subject. He says :
" it in the mean time the Mexican States on the Rio Grande
should be annexed, (as they will be, if they are to come in as
tree States,} we shall be entirely out off from the hope we now
have of letting off this population, then probably valueless as
property, among the people already, to a certain extent, ho
mogeneous, vnu with whom they may readily and naturally
Now, sir, this is worse, if possible, than the idea of
" Southern demand." Here is a bright picture for the citi
zens of New Mexico ! Amalgamate ! What will the inhe
ritors of the old Castilian blood and spirit say to that ?
The gentleman's speech has been extensively circulated ;
newspapers have copied large portions of it; each member of
Congress, I le?rn, has been politely furaished with a copy.
If it reaches New Mexico, and her people understand the
gentleman expresses tbe opinions of the South, he will be
entitled to the credit or the blame of keeping slaves fiom New
I wish now, sir, to say a word to some of the agitators on
this floor, who have been guilty of unkind and cruelly-un
charitable speeches. A gentleman from Massachusetts, (Mr.
Majtw,) who has the reputation of being a man of letters and!
of cultivated taste, gave utterance to expressions which he
must have known were ollenstve to every Southern man in
this Hi.use. He drew a horrid picture of the probable con
sequences of dfcunio n.Some expressions ait, I think, modi
fied in his printed epecch ; and my blood ran cold to hear
a gentleman of his age and standing apparently delight ia
wounding our feelings. will not repeat the expressions to
which I refer. I could not sp?ak them in respectful terms.
Sir, I have no personal acquaintance with tbe gentleman from
Massachusetts ; but if he be the man I have heard of, as pos
sessing a cultivated mind, adorned with rare classical attain
ments?if his speech is a fair exhibition of his feeling, I fear
he will furnish another melancholy example of the truth of
the assertion that a cultivated intellect is not always attended
with a.cultivated hem?that a man's mind may be " rich
with the spoils of time," and his heart of flinty coldness.
The gentleman is not unknown to the country as an able and
eloquent lecturer to literary institutions; bis services in the
cause of educa'ion have been valuable ; he has proved in that
offensive speech that with him " knowledge is a Swiss mer
cenary, ready to combat either in the woiks of sin or under
the banner of righte usness"?ready to give wholesome ad
vice to young men when entering" upon life, or to fan the
flames of fanaticism.
The gentleman seemed to speak without reg;ret at the
thought that "domestic fury and fiefce civil strife " should
reign among us. What reason, what motive, can prompt
the gentleman from Massachusetts thus to speak to us ? It
csnnot give him strength at home. No one accuses any
Northern man of wishing to establish or extend slavery; and
if the gentl man will witbd'himself from bi? philosophical
reveries for a few moments, .. . j a-k himself, with the remem
brance that there is an eye that sees the thoughts of the heart,
" Whit good have I done, what good did I hope to do, by
outraging the feelftigs of any of the members of this Hoiue
I think the "still small voice" will tell him, None, none!
I fear the gentleman will prove it is true,
" Heart-merit wanting, mount we ne'er so high,
Our height is but the gibbet of our name."
If I might presume to advise one so competent to give advice
as the gentleman from Massachusetts is, I would tell him,
Better keep at your lecture.*?have them published asd puffed
bv your friends. In this way, good may be achieved by your
efforts. Your eloquence may be praised?extracts may be
published from your lectures, exciting the admiration of
sophomores and of men- But I beg the gentleman to remem
ber, that though he speaks with the " tongues of men and of
angels, and has not charity," he will bfcome as "sounding
brass or a tinkling cymbal." And another gentleman, from
Pennsylvania, (Mr. Stevbws,) in a speech which was ap
parently deliberately prepared, gave utterance to sentiment*,
clothed in language that a Southern,gentleman would not use
to a respectable negro. I expected some ultraism from this-,
source. ' That gentleman is known as a man of excessive hu
manly. And since anti maeor.ary will no longer answer foiv
u hobby-horse?since Morgan's mysterious disappearance has.
ceased to agitate the public mi id in the North, the gentle
man must preach against the horrors and the despot ism. of
slavery. I hope his next ppeeeh will be fit to be read in the
families of Pennsylvania farmar*. I hope the gentleman will
find some other Morjyan to frighten the grandmothers and
children of Pennsylvania with. But I a?k him to let us alone.
Mr. Chairman, if these gentlemen's minds were not ae in
accotsible to reason as tboir heorts seem devoid of kindness
toward n portion of their ccuntrymcn, I would gladly ask '.hem
to listen to some few facta. When I was a young man, and
first observed |?ublic events in North Carolina, free negrcea
voted as white citizens. Free negroes voted in North Caroli
na until an amend meat wni made in our State constitution in
1835. And in the town of Newbprn, where I lived, accord
ing to my recollection, out of three hundred voters, sixty of
them were free blacks. And when the proposition was made
in our convention>.in 1835, to d?prive free negroes of the pri
vilege of voting, it was oppos d by some of our abl?t and best
men. I think the vote st od sixty-five for abolishing the
ri>!ht, and sixty ogai rut it; and among tbeae sixty are record
ed the name* erf Judges Gaston and Daniel, then two of the
judges of ovtj- supreme court; Mr. Ravuer, favorably known
here; and L think, slro, Mr. Montgomery and Mr. Charles
Fisher, afterwards members of Congees* from my State, and
other ge&tlemen whose names I cannot now remember. Well,
?ir, what is the effect of the agitation of abolitionists ? Have
you improved the condition of the free neproea > Far from it.
.And if the same proposition were >-ultuiited to a State conven
tion in North Carolina at this day, not one man would vole
for it. Within my own memory, emancipation of a slavte
was a matter of frequent occurrence. A simple petition to
the a >urt. on half a sheet of pap^r, at the request of the master,
alleging his slave had rendered meritorious soivicra, and the
slave was made free. But theae fanatics circulated papera
containing doctrines l>ke th?*e avowed in tl;e speeches I have
referred to, and the inevitable consequence was that legisla
tion interfered, for insuirection was tslk< d of in the infamous
papers of the abolitionists, and a feeling that it was neccasary
to protect our firesides and our homes compelled us to be
caroful. And how is it now > Emancipation is a difficult
matter. In extraordinary ca*es our Legislature a metimee
emancipates. Our laws allow slaves to be emancipated bjr
will, but not to remain in the State As the publie mind be
came excited, our people thought it wrong to allow emanci
pation when free negroes could visit our Northern 8tate? tad

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