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The national era. [volume] (Washington [D.C.]) 1847-1860, March 07, 1850, Image 4

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by the forms prescribed by the Constitution and
the rules of this House ; secondly, as private cutr*w.t,
in which characters they are bound to resist
the passage of an aggressive law, in the same way
that private citizens may resist aggression upon
their rights. I feel quite sure that I hove not mistaken
the proper construction to be put upon the
gentleman's language. But, us I have given the
entire paragraph, let it speak for itself. Whatever
doubts there m iy be as to the proper construction
of that paragraph, there can be none,
none at all, as to the one which I now quote Irom
the speech of the gentleman from North Carolina.
( Mr. Cmroman.] already referred to :
"Bat it I* advise I duty* tie) in certain portion* of the
Northvrn press, that th* mem her* from that section onght
to expel such ss interrupt th>-ir proceeding*. I.et th?m try
the experiment I tell gentlemen that this is oar slave
h acting Territory. We il > not intend to leave it. If they
think they e,n t move us, it i< a proper ease for trial. Ii
the present temper of the public mind, it is probab'e that
rolltniun of the kind here might electrify the country, us die
the little skirmish at Lexington the colonies in their tint
excited state. Such a struggle, whoever might prove thi
victors in it, would not lesve a quorum here to do bu?inee*
tientlemen may call this treason, high Irtinoti?the li<ghe*
treasou that the world ever kuw Bjt their words are idle
We shall defeat their movement against us."
If this does not sufficiently show where and hov
the revolution is to commence, let us turn aguit
to the speech of the gentleman from Missi-sippi
I Mr. Brown.1 and reml unothur extract
" My own opinion in thin : tint we nhoiild re-i?t the intro
Unction of California ax a State, ami re.tint it sueretsfulh/
reflet it by our vot?? tirnt, ho.I >a?tly by other mean*. If
ran at ira it, force an adjournment iciliiout her utlmistioi,
Thi? being done, we are x*r? The Southern State*, iu em
Tention at Nashville, wi'l .leeiee meant for vindicating thH
right* I do not know wha' theee mean* will be, hut I knot
what they m ty be, and with pripriety ami ?af?ty. The
may be to carry slave* into all of Southern California, a* tli
property of Hnveretgn Slate*, and there hold them, a* ?
baee a r;ght to do; ami, If nioleeted, defend them, a* i* led
our right and duty
" Wt ask you to glee o* our right* by non-int krvkntion
If you refuee, I am for taking them by akmko occcpaTIon.
Resist the passage of.?I.w advnitticg CuKfcrsi
first by votes, and 1 tally by "oth< t wans!'' Mi
Chairman, docs the Constitution which we ?r
sworn to support, or the rules of this House
point out to us any " o'h r rtvttns of resisting th
enactment of a law, except by means of vote*
We can adjourn. Hut. how adjourn without totim
an adjournment ? ' Force an adjournment,1' stj
the gentleman. An<l that force is the "othe
means" by which the admission of California i
to be resisted, 11 and resitted successfully? Am
what next? Why, the Nashville Convention is ti
meet. Then what? "Carry slaves into all o
Southern California, tut the property of sovereigt
States, and there hold them, as we h ive a ligh
to do; uud if molested, defend thctn, as is hit!
our right and duty." Aud thus is California tt
be "taken" by "armed occupation." Alas foi
the, 100,000 men already there, or on their waj
thither, from whom California is to be taken bj
force, and held by armed occupation, that sluverj
may be introduced there agiiust their will!
1 do not doubt, ^Ir Chairman. that by this tirue
you aud this Committee are snli.ifnd. us I am, that
unless the intentions of the people of the slaveholding
States h tvo been mistaken by some ot
their Representatives here, a conflict of arms between
the Government of the United States and a
portion of the citizens thereof is inevitable.
"but, sir, 1 h ivc nevVrpytuiKUvbui-yseM todoubt
lite patriotism of the American people. An 1 1
shall he slow, especially, to distrust that quality
iu the people of the geuerous South. Left to their
own unprejudioed judgment and their own sound
r> flections, 1 shall have no fear. 1 dare hardly
.. ?c.n,a? L.u'iniir fn* the ftTpct wlltCll tllC NIICecilCM.
especially that of the gentleman from Mississippi,
[Mr. Brown,] may have upon the miuJs of it
gallant people, naturally ardent an.! impulsive.
Indeed, sir, I shudder at the thought of the effect
which passage* like that which 1 .shall now quote
may, 1 had almost stid inn7, pro luce on the feelings
of our Southern brethren. Receiving it iu
good faith, as we are bound to suppose they will,
us a faithful statement ofthc cruelties and enormities
about to he visited upou Ibcin by (he hands of
their Northern brethren, it would be strange indee
l. if they failed to he wrought up to the most
intense degree of excitement ami exasperation:
" Our country i? to to made -lem-late We arc t -be >iri ven
from our home*?Ihe h one* hallaweil by kit the suertd ?asucia.ioas
uf lnyiily ho I lm-nds. \W are to be sect, like
st peo|-le ac. arse-I..f <j-. I. t- wander through the !hii I, hnmeIum.
hoiiRclosK, hiiI trirndless; or, what ia ten tbonsiinil
limtM worse thsn tlitH*, than nil, remain in a country now
proijierou* anil happy, ami ace our* Ives, our wives and
children degraded t > a social position with tlie black race.
Tlia?c, tlietc iirc the frightful, terrible consequence* yon
wj-il l entail up in u*. Picture to vuiireclreH Hungary, resiatiinr
the piwers of Austria and Huaria; ami if iiungiry,
which bad never tailed libel tv, could luake such stout rei
am i wh it may v u n o anticipate from eight tiiilllniis
of Soulhroiia male desperate by your eafgrostlou* T'
Do you know, Mr. Chairman, of any ucts eommittcd
or meditate 1 by the North against the
people of the slavcholding States, that can by nny
pos nihility justify such declarations as those I have
iplo'sl I 1 know el' nunc unit I urn utira iho *funtlenian
from Mississippi will find it very difficult
tn point them nut to bis constituents, it is easy,
indeed, to tleil in general charges ng.iust, the
North; and when requested to specify those
charges, to say. as the honorable g nt'eman from
Mi-8'Fsippi dt.es. 11 will not recount the story o)
our wrongs'' But will such a course satisfy ti
people, patriotic, intelligent, and inquiring? Future
developments will show.
And what, sir, are the causes assigned to justify
the act of dissolving this Union? They are alleged
aggressions by the uon-shtveholding -States
upon the rights of the slaveholding. in respect tr
slavery. All the charges put forth against tlit
iion-slaveholding -States have reference to tluil
question solely; and they are all comprised ami
compendiously set forth in n single brief sentence
which I here quote from the speech before referred
to of the gentleman from North Carolina
| Mr. CniNOMAN j Afti r referring at some length
to the benefits and advantages of slavery, he says
' In ?pit?, however, <-f these girat fads, which might li
-trike all imp irtlal min t*, the --ur*< --filu- V.rth l-,i* lu-.-i
Constantly aggressive on this quest i- n."
Now, sir, on behalf of the North, I repel tin
charge. And 1 alfirin th it. f.?r anything the Nortl
has done to justify the overthrow of this (aovern
ment,any attempt to?lo ho is naked treaaon What
sir. the course of the free Stales been ' const nulj
aggressive'' upon the South on the Slavery ques
lion ? Let us sec. Since the adaption of th<
Constitution, seventeen Si ite- b iv - tieen adoiitte.
into the Union Of this number niif are slave
holding States, andeigA/ non-sle.veholiliug. Now
oiv it liuu un h-.rn i.hiul iktl t Af#PV llltti vvh.'t
' """ " i i - - /
any of these sluvehnlding States h ive Applied foi
admission, the North ha*had complete neci-ndeiicj
iu both branches of Congress, consequently th?
power to exclude any or all of them. They wer?
nil admitted, sUv.'holding as they were, with just
such Constitutions as they had chosen to adopt
for themselves Is this a p rt of that ' aggressivf
course' on the si ivery question which tin' North
has " constantly " pursued 1
Again: Of the territory embraced within thi
seventeen States thus admitted, the tree Statei
comprise':'"! 'JVi square mites; and thesl iveMate
730,370 square miles Thus we see that the rt
tent of slave territory admitted into the lToioi
since the adoption of the Constitution is consider
ably more than twice as great as that of the fro
territory. Poesthis look like a disposition on t h<
part of the free States to pursue a course of con
stant aggression "towards the South on the eubjec
of slavery 1
Again: The annexation of Texas was a pecu
liarly Southern measure. The necessity of iti
acquisition was distinctly pi iced by Mr Cai.
iioun?himself tho embodiment of ultra Southeri
principles, and the master-spirit of the then Ad
ministration?upon the wants of slavery. To thi
North the measure was distasteful. Tin- ixortti
never desired, for its own snke, the acquisition o
Texas , nevertheless, the South earnestly desiritq
it, and Mr. Caliioun's great influence beinj
brought to bear in its favor, for the reason, chiefly
just given, the North generously acquiesced it
the measure, though possessed of atnplo power ti
defeat it. Texas was acquired?and, at the cos
of a sanguinary and expensive war, we took inti
the Union, at one swoop, an amouut of slave tcr
ritory equal in extent to the entire original thir
teen States. All this the non-slaveholdiug State
might have prevented, but did not. Is thi
Northern "aggression" upon the rights of th
South on the Slavery Question ! Is this on" o
the acts of41 uggressiou" on that subject which i
to justify gentlemen of the South iu dissolvinj
the I'nion ?
The power of Congress to abolish the slav
trade and slavery at the arsenals, forts, and nav;
yards, and iu Ii?is District, will hardly be ijues
tioned by any of our Southern friends. And yet
neither the oue nor the other has been abolished
to this day, in any of those places. Kven slave
dealers now drive their ocoupation in this Dis
trict, at pleasure Could uot >hc North, had shi
chosen so to do, have put an end to slavery ami
the slave trade iu all these plans, long ere this
She has forborne to do so. Is thnt forhearnnct
any part of the "agression " upon slavery whlcl
now justifies rehelliou against the Union /
Now, sir, let us consider those minor charges
so pertinaciously urged against the free Suites
that make up the sunt total of those 'aggressions'
which justify these gentlemen iu dissolving th
Union. What are these charges? Why, it i
charged, first, that among the people of the frc
States there is a prevalent and increasing feelinj
adverse to slavery. This statement, or charge, i
it he one, I cannot deny. Hut 1 am ut a loss t
conceive how that can he regarded as an "aggrt s
sioo" upon the South, or a justification fortheac
of overthrowing this Government. Is it require*
of the free States that they, in aggregate, shal
keep n supervision oarer the views and opinions o
their individual citizens, on political, moral or an;
other subjects ' Is not this a country of freedou
of opinion ' And do not our Southern friends
even, recognise the principle that "error of opin
ion rovy be safely tolerated where reason is lef
free to combat it?'' Hut are the people of the
free Stated peculiar in 4|teir views on this subject
? Does not the " aggression " come also from
another quarter, and with ten-fold force ? How
is the feeling in Kentucky, where, at a recent
election, more than ten thousand votes (as I am
informed) were cast in favor of complete emancipation
? Flow is it in other Northern slave States,
where Van 1'uren, even, at the last Presidential
election, found warm supporters, and not a few
votes? Now, gentlemen of the South, you cunuot
prevent these things?this feeling, or scn'imeut,
or whatever else you may cull it?even
among the people of your own slavoholding
States, can you ? Are you not nsking too much,
then, wheu you require us of the. North and
West to suppress it among our people? We
could not do so if we would. And if we had the
power, our refusal to exercise it would by no
, means teud to justify the destruction of this Ite,
t Again : It is made an accusation against the free
j) State-, that their ministers of the Gospel make
slavery a subject of pulpit disquisition, thus int
creasing the hostility already existing against
that institution. To some extent this may bethc
fact. Mr. Chairman ; though I confess that, so far
its uiy own knowledge extends, such instances are
1 exceedingly rare. Hut what then? Can ave pre'
vent that' Ought we to try? Why, on this
point we have the authority of the gentleman
i'rom Mississippi IMr. llsow sj himself, in favor
f ot the practice. 1 ou will recoiiec', sir. mai aner
i treating us to an argument of considerable length,
1 designed to show that the moral nnd religious
I condition of the negro is improved by his being
y held in bond ig ?and after declaring that, in his
* opinion, slavery is "a great moral, social, polit*
icil, and religions blessing?a blessing to the
slave, and a blessing to the master "?he drops the
; subject by saying : " It is no p<rt. of iny purpose
to discuss tins proposition. The subject, in this
'? of it, !w.!cugi. rathevtc the pnlftMh 'rxtfl the
? balls of legislation.'' Surely, sir, he will now
e complain no more of sermons on the Hiibj?ef of
>, slavery: ami, when he comes to draft the deec
liration" for the Southern Confederacy ?(I
7 trust that his not already been done)?be will
< certainly not include this as one of the causes
s which impel us to the separation.''
r But again: It is charged also against, the free
h States, that we tolerate anti-slavery societies.
1 Yes, sir: we tolerate anti-slavery societies, nao
tive American societies, temper nice societies,
t moral reform societies, missionary societies, sew'
ing societies, and possibly?though 1 am not cert
tain?other societies. Indeed, sir. we are tolerant.
? towards all sorts of societies. We arc so, he>
cause, first, we have no right to be intolerant in
" i reference to such matters. and. s- comity, because
f there is no necessity for meddling with them.
' \V c must hunt for other cans s than this, sir, to
' justify a dissolution of this l iiion.
Another charge against us is, that we permit
men to per.iuibiil it'- the country, lecturing on abolitionism?thus
increasing the prejudice already
existing against the institution of slavery. There
are such men, no doubt. My mind recurs to one
just now?one who, in that way, has probably
exercised more influence in the North, than all
the other anti-slavery lecturers put together.
Thivnmn it Cassins M. Clwy, a crtsT.cn .if the j
shareholding State of Kentucky. When our Southern
friends will agree to seal his mouth ou that
subject, or confine his efforts to abolish slavery
to the Southern States where he belongs, it will be
time enough for us of the North to set about devising
some mode of confining itinerant lecturers,
or prescribing subjects for the exercise of their
eloquence. 1 might mention other lecturers of
the same sort, for whom the North is indebted to
the slave States. IJut it is unnecessary.
It is also made tv matter of ac.cusation against
the free States, that anti-slavery presses are kept
up there, and that the papers supplied by them tiro
circulated throughout the Northern States, and
even into the Southern; nnd this i3 one of the
principal causes which render it necessary to establish
a "Southern Confederacy," which shall
embrace just exactly the fifteen slaveholding States
and no more. We cannot deny, Mr. Chairman,
I liai SUCH papers UO circulate <|ttne caicuhitci^ hi I
Home portions of the froo States, ami some of j
them, probably, may bo found even south of Mn- '
son and I)ixon'a line. I hare n paper of that
character on my desk now. Here it in, sir. {Holding
it up | It is a far-looking ptpcr, ^-r Chairman;
ami 1 observe that its article* are written
with great power. Hut, I assure you, sir, it is
fearfully severe on slavery. And it circulates extensively
in the North, too; the number not being
less, 1 nut told, than fourteen thousand weekly :
besides some thousands which /'W thtir tray into
the slnveholding States. Now, I em imagine that
you suppose this paper to be published in Vermont.
You are mistaken,sir. It is not published
there, nor in Massachusetts, nor even north of
ftliison ami i axon's tine, ri. i? gututntiot ?u state
territory, sir; right here in sight of this Capitol,
and almost within sound of my voice. High' here,
sir, upon the very spot from which the gentleman
from North Carolina |Mr. Ci.in<i>hn| is not
r going to be driven, hecuise it. is his " st ive tr.rritvrifP
Yes, gentlemen of the .South, front your
own midst; from the very doors of your houses,
surrounded by your slave pnptiln'ion, do you send
forth anti-slavery papers, in number more than
fourteen thousand per week, to deluge the North,
and manufacture public sentiment there. Then
' you make the circulation of tbe-e papers, snd the
' prevalence of a sentiment which they cannot but
engender, a pretext for overthrowing this Gnvcrn.'
ment. Silence your own abolition presses; keep
for your own use the (burto n thousand abolition
' tiatierj which voti weekly distribute nmonsr the
, ? r ...... . t # .
people of the North, and then claim, if you will,
' that the existence of abolition presses in the free
' States in justification to you for dissolving the
I remember, nlso, that there was another anti1
slavery press in vigorous and very effective operation
for some time in Kentucky
Mr. llltOWN. We destroyed it.
Mr. ItlSSKI.L So you did, hy violence. Hut,
by your own laws, and the decisions of your own
t courts, you were punished for it. You were compelled
to make compensation in damages for your
, lawless act. Now. I ask our Southern friends, in
I ail good feeling, if they can justly urge as a reason
tor dissolving the Union, annoyances consequent
upon a state of things in the free St itcs
, which they cannot prevent at their own doors ?
We sre met hy the gentleman from North Carr
oliita with another difficulty, for which he holds
s the North responsible. I le suggests that the in<i
creasing anfi-slavery sentiment in the North
1 will prevent the President from appointing si ivehohlers
to office. For the present, let a single fact
t allay the gentleman's fears. The Presidency has
i been given to the slaveholding States during forty
eight of the list sixty years. Ami this, too,
though the white population of the slaveholding
i Stales has rarely, if at any time, exceeded onea
h ilf that of the free States. Of the foreign missions
of all grades, umr/ >hnn n vmjoiity have been
i given tolhsKnuth Of the Cabinet appointments,
very nearly, if not quite half, have been given to
i? the South. Of the officers in the army and navy,
a it will be found that, considering the relative
population of the free and slaveholding States, at
t least three out. of five have been given to the
South. Mow is It ut this very moment, sir, while
- thesi very complaints of outrage, insults, tyranny,
t and ln?s of office, nre being made? Why, sir. the
President?a m ijority of the Cabinet?a majority
t of our foreign ministers?a majority of the members
of the Supreme Court, and the presiding olli
eer and clerk of this llonse?are Southern men
I HIUl Hl.'iVUDOMCl t1? Puro tU?M *???* >.>J\t < Uu ^un.
f tleman from North Carolina > Surely he might,
; on this subject, rest <|iiite easy. Another dilli5
culty gravely net forth in that gentleman's speech,
, I ought, perhaps, to notice with becoming serious1
ticss. I allmle to the refusal of the New Knglaud
,? spinster to take the Southern gentleman's arm 1
t That was wrong, unquestionably. Hat then,
a these Yankee girls are very independent, and will
- do just as they please?as some of us have learned
from very painful personal experience Hut I do
s not think that a dissolution of the Union need to
s follow as a necessary consequence. It is a proper
e subject for negotiation. And as the lady cannot
f fail to perceive by this time that she is in dauger
s of becoming a second II ha, she will doubtless bo
g more yielding.
Another chargongoinst the free States in that of
e aiding fugitive slaves to make their escape. That
f we have vicious people hh well an deluded people
among us. we do not deny and that they have
, aided slaves to elude the pursuit of their owners,
, is, I regret to say, tuore than probable. Such acts
are not iu consonance with the spirit of our Con
stitution, and they tend directly to destroy that
i? good neighliorhood among the people and the
I States of this Union, which every truf-hourtod
t American desires to cultivate. They are acts
? against the commission and for the punishment of
i which tho General Government ought to provide
1 hope such provision will he made before the
, close of this session. It need not bo expected,
. i however, that nuy human laws, however rigidly
enforced, will wholly remedy this evil. There
e are h.t.i men in all communities?in the North as
" well as the South?and one unprincipled man,
e by enticing nway or aiding the escape of n slave,
It nitty bring reproaches upon a whole State. I am
f confident, however, that the number of such men in
0 the free States i? very greitly over-estimated by
i- gentlemen from the South They should rememt
her that it takes hut very few men to occasion nil
1 the annoyance they have suffered in this rospect
I They should remember, too, that these thingsare
f done secretly, and are Ly no means countenanced
/ hy the mass of the people For my own part, I am
I ready to go any reasonable length to secure such
i, legislation as will henceforth prevent, as far as
- possible, this grievauoe. 1 desire to see a law ent
acted this present session, which shall secure to
you, as fur as practicable, your rights in this re- ! c
spect. The slaves are your own property , recog- t
nised as such by that Constitution, every line and t
every intendment of which I hold sacred. Rut <
let me ask gentlemen if they have not negro-steal- (
ers in their own States?if they have not every
variety of unprincipled characters among them 7 1
Neither they nor wecan free our respective States t
from such men; and they should consider wheth- <
er. if things were reversed?they occupying our i
position, an 1 we theirs?they would he likely to j
J keep themselves freer from just reproach than we ?
' have hetn. i am no* so undmindful of truth as <
to deny that, in respect to the subject new under 1
Consideration, souie of our Southern friends have 1
good cause to complain. Rut it must h ive been
j remarked by all of us. that the Representatives i
from those States which have really been nggrieved J
in this respect are not tho-e who have threatened ,
us with disunion. These threats have come front <
the Representatives of States from which. I ven- 1
ture to s ty, on an average, not one si tve etcap s ;
in five years. Who ever heard of a slave escaping 1
from Mississippi or Alabama? Where does he 1
go to? Who helps him away? Certainly not
the neonle of the North. Kentucky, Virginia. 1
Maryland, and Missouri, the only S'utcstbat are i
really sufferers by the escape of slaves, do not
1 seem to have dreamed of dissolution ns a remedy ; |
while the Representatives from a few of the extreme
Southern States, whence slaves coul l no
more escape than from the island of Cuba, see
ample cause and imperious nece.-sity fordi.-solving
the U niou .nd establishing a" Southern Confederacy,"
in the alleged fact tLat their slaves arc enticid
nway by the citizens of the North.
I believe there remains now but a single other
"charge agiinst the North'' for me to examine;
an 1 that brings me to the subject more immcdi
itely under consideration in this Committee?
the California (juration. The proceeding which
has resulted in bringing California to the doorof
I .the Uujon is characterized by the honorable gen1
ttenian from .Mississippi, - .as unwise, unpatriotic,
| sectional in its tendencies, imtyltiuif to lh* Sou/It,
and in the last degree despicable." "It is,"
' says that gentleman, " in derogation of the Con1
-dilution of the United States, and intended to
rob the Soui/irrn Slat's of their just and rightful
possessions." ^
It is also objected that these proceedings nre 0
likely to introduce into the other House of Con- 0
gross two "Free Soil Senators," which will destroy
'he equilibrium r.ow existing there bet Keen the "
North and the South, by giving to the free States n
the majority. Well now, sir, what are the pro- s
coedi gs complained of, and for which the Union '
is to he dissolved, auTthe North held responsible ? "
The President, himself a Southern man and a slave- u
holder, with a Cabinet the majority of whom are 0
Southern meu and slaveholders, send Thomas 11
J'utler King, a Southern man and a slaveholder, v
Ill llll ..II.. UPIU.V.I, ...... ?v,
the gold diggers in their efforts to join the sisterhoo<l
of States. Mr. King returns, bringing as
trophies two Southern tnen?one a Mississippian
and the other a South Carolinian, (and both slaveholders,
1 believe)?whom our Southern President
desires to introduce into the Senate of the United
Stati s as members of that body. And. thereupon,
our Southern friends declare that if this inf.imou"-.-K??.t-we
of " Northern aggression" *is varied .
out, the Uuion shall be dissolved and the North
held responsible! Hut what, I pray, has the,
North had to do with all this? Where can you I
discover the slightest traces of a Northern man's
finger in the whole matter? Nay, sir, who are
they in Congress who are understood to have distinctly
declared themselves in favor of the admission
of California, since the reception of the i
message on that subject? Who hut Clay, ilous- !
ton, Benton, of the Senate, and Hay, of this
House?all slaveholders ? j
And this California proceeding fill i the measure i
of Northern ' aggression," and m ikes it imperative
upon "'every Southern son to rise in rebel- ;
lion," and exclaim to the North."Give us liberty j
or give us death!' Mr. Chairman, how is it ,
that this matter is expected never to be understood j
by the people of the South? Surely their Itep- [
resentatives do not intend to deceive them?they |
could not hope to do so on a subject do plain and J
palpable. I
Now. sir, having disposed of the charges of j
' Northern aggression." of which we have heard '
so much since the meeting of Congress, I appeal
to gentlemen to say whether there is anything in '
them, taken separately or in the aggregate, which 1
iu the slightest degree justifies their threats against '
the Union? I appeal to them also to say, whether *
the overthrow of this Government and the ostab. 1
lishrnent of a "Southern Confederacy" would t
mitigate in any degree the evils they complain of.
Would anti-slavery societies go down; would '
anti-slavery presses cease their issues, would c
lecturers give up their occupations; would Mrs. c
Partington withhold her sage opinions on the mo- s
l.lliljr of fll'irppy j .n't woiil'l nl.vM no t
more from the Northern slavcholding States? v o, '
gentlemen, every real grievance that now exists '
would then be aggravated in a tenfold degree. I 1
am n' a loss to conceive how on this point there 1
can be any diversity of opinion
Seeing, then, that all these complaints are either j
wholly groundless, or exceedingly trivial, when |
considered in the light of causes justifying a dissolution
of the Union, I am constrained to believe,
and I so declare as the firtn conviction of my own
mind, that if this slavery question were settled today,
upon terms entirely unobjectionable to the
South, the scheme of dismembering the Union
would still be prosecuted as now.
Sir, I feel no little remorse for the wrong I did
to an eminent citizen last summer. The distin
guished Senator from Missouri. Colonel Benton. j
distinctly and boldly declared to the people of that I
State, that there was a email hut active party in
tho extreme South?at the head of which was an
eminent statesman, alike distinguished for hie
great genius and hia reckless ambition?who were
seeking a dismemberment of the Union, in order
to the eetahlishmeut of a separate ''Southern
Confederacy." For that I denounced Colonel
Benton in my State, and to my constituents.
M ay (iod forgive me for the wrong I did him. I
was wrong?he was right. Yes, sir; with that
party, small, but active and influential, this slavery
agitation is but a mode of effecting the destruction
of this Union. It furnishes a convenient
pretext and a powerful lever. But, be assured
air. had they not in the slavery question a
plausible pretext for carrying forward their designs,
they would hunt for such a pretext elsewhere?or
invent one. The jro/ile, however, alike
patriotic and vigilant, will defeat their designs;
and in due time they will visit with just retribution
those who have sought to mislead them.
But do these gentlemen see no difficulties in the
way ? I know that, so far as the free States are
concerned, they have only to fear " a liille fa scon
a tie awl a f>ir threats"?for they have told us ?o.
But is there nothing to be apprehended from the
patriotism and firmness of the people of the slave
States themselves ? I low about all those who may
choose to hesitate in the States of Maryland, Delaw
ire, North Carolina, Virginia, Kentucky, Missouri.
Texas, and Tennessee? They are to he
hatigeil?hinged at once, as we learn from the
gentleman from North Carolina, | Mr.C1.in1.wan |
Now. sir, when tho gentleman proceeds to that
operation in Kentucky, the hemp-growers of that
State w ill have no occasion to desire a contract
for furnishing the Navy w ith hemp?for thev will
not be able to supply the diitnnnd for home consumption
Truly, that day on which all the people
of the slive States who are opposed to disunion
shall he hanged in the air, and among them
Ci.ay, Unhkrwooh, Bkvion, Hoiis-ion, Baui.kr,
and others of equal distinction?that day, sir,
will ne one to tie romvuitwirsit ? rrentteineii tell
us agtin and again, that they are not appalled at
all this?that nothing need he expected frotn the
fears of ''Southrons.'' And the gentleman from
North Carolina, especially, seems exceedingly
anxious to intpreis us with a proper .appreciation
of the prowess of himsMt"and his friends. This
is all unnecessary. We have never impugned
their bravery, and never doubted it. We do not
doubt it now. They unquestionably possess that
quality to an equal extent with other tnon. But
their constant disparagement of the personal
courage of the people of the free States can certainly
not be expected to heighten our opinion
of their own. YVe may come to think, bye and
bye, that they have fallen into two errors?the
one, the error of underrating the courage ?f others:
nnd the other I need not particularize.
The gentleman from North Carolina, speaking
for himself and his friends, says " 1 tell gentletKn*
#l?ta Sa mir filavoVtnl.lincr frurritnrv Wo
, .<?. ...... .... p, J.
I ilo not iutend to leave it. If they think they can
j remove us, it is ft proper case for tiial, " nnd he
I delights in the prospect that such a contest Would
I not h ave n quorum of live members on this Moor
) 'l'he gentleman must excuse us for declining the
, invitation to so delightful an entertainment
I We have nodouht that he and his friends would
i defend with great resolution this ' sluvtholding
I territory. 1 w ish this particular spot of "slaveI
holding territory " had been always thus defended.
I think the Capitol stands now where it did in
j ISl i?does it not, Mr. Chairman Yes, sir; in
j the same place.
Poyou not remoiuher to have read that, in
! August of that year, the British, after spending
j something like a mon'h on the waters of the
Chesapeake, quietly landed a handful (4,.100) of
sulors anil soldiers?enervated by the effects of a
long sea voyage?gome forty miles from this
place ? And do you not remember that, dragging
by baud three pieces of artillery, two of theiu
three-pounders, they made their way over this
very " slavrholding territory " to this very Capitol
; and having destroyed our library and public
archives, and reduced the Capitol to a heap of
smouldering ruins, spending nine days the while
on this "slaveholding territory,'' leisurely reembarked
for other scenes of operation ? Now, I i
io not charge, air, that our friends then were a
'anting in bravery. Not at all. I think, indeed, e
hey were aa brave then aa now. But somehow j
>r other I could never help but think that on that a
>ccaaion they were?rather bashful. a
Thegentleman from Mississippi, [Mr. Brown,]
who thinks that the resistance of the free States
o the overthrow of our Government would be C
onfined to "a little ga-conade and a few threats," g
a neveithelrss kind aad considerate enough to t
tive us some advice to be acted upon in the event o
>f our not choosing to confine our resistance to a si
iissolution of the Union within so sinull u com- h
Hearken, Mr. Chairman, to this voice of d
wisdom: e
" When voti leave your home* in New hngUud, or in the g
treat West, on this "mtsslvn of love? this crusade ?g*ln?t f,
he South ; when you come to fake slavery to your hoeoma, j,
in i to eubdns virht millk-ns -f SouiIhtii |wo|.le I warn
r-ii t , make all thins* rea.lv. Ki-h j-'ir ? ves. hia your "
ibiMren a long farewell, make |?eaee with yo r fiod; for I ri
saru you that you may n?v r return." jl
The profound emotion with which this sage ad- B,
monition was received by the bachelors in this
part of the Hall must have satisfied the gentlenan,
I think, that due heed will be given it. He ),
ilso admonishes us more than twice, or thrice, of ,|
I he enormous population now comprised within the ]j
slaveholding States. He sets it down at eight t|
millions of freemen. Now. the last census, if I am ?
not mistaken, shows the number to have been four a'
millions and six or seven hundred thousand; and ?
by none of the ordinary modes of cilculation can f,
that number now exceed six millions. If the in- \
crease has really been so great as the gentleman t
would have us believe it may be set down as a v
circumstance, the like of which has never been ?
known in any nge or country ; and the gentleman
may justly claim that his constituents are as emi- i
1 aiia1S(v ftu far _
lently Jisfinguisneu iur <i??"v ? *- h
irowess. But this is a small matter. t>ir ; and I n
nc-ely refer to it as hr illustration of the prone- ]
less of our Southern friends to exaggerate all j
heir capabilities. # I
'I'l.;. prenenr*^ h" i.* nnt.alwayp lyirm-,
oss. ami I must now refer to a subject which I j
vould gladly have avoided. 1 allude to the claim ^
>ut forth for a Southern regiment, by the gentle- ?
uan from Virginia, | Mr. Skpdon.| of having inft t
nd repulsed the enemy on the field of Buena
/isia, t.t that most criticil moment when the sec- c
nd Indiana regiment, through an unfortunate n
rder of their Colonel, gave way. Justice to the
iving, as well as to those who fell on that occa- ?
iou, demand of me a prompt correction of this j
io?t erroneous statement And I affirm distinctly, ,
ir, ami euch is the fact, that at the time the second t
odium regiment gave way, the Mississippi regi- j
tent, for whom this claim is thus gratuitously set <
p, was not within & mile and a half of the scene t
f action , nor had it at yet tired a gun, or drawn y
trigger. 1 affirm further, sir, that the troops (
rhich at that time met and resisted the enemy, i
nd thus, to use the gentleman's own language, |
sn itched victory from thejiwsof defeat,''were |
he second Kentucky, the second Illinois, nnd a (
icrtion of the first Illinois regiments It gives me .
10 pleasure, sir, to be compelled to allude to this ]
lubj.'ct, nor can I perceive the necessity or pro- ,
rivty introduction into this debate. It hav- |
ug been introduced, however, I could not sit in |
lilence and witness the infliction of such cruel inmen.
living apcl dci^I. whose well-J ,
tamed fame I were a iaonster hot to protect. "Tfie i
rue and brave hearts of too many of them, alas, ]
l ive already mingled with the soil of a foreign
:ountry ; but their claims upon the justice of their
rountrymen can never cease, nor can my obliga- <
ions to thern be ever forgotten or disregarded.
Vo, sir. The voice of Hardin?that voice which
las so often been heard in this hall as mine now is,
hough far more eloquently?the voice of Hardin, i
?ye, and of McKee, ami the accomplished CI ay?
rath wrapped now in his bloody shroud?their
toicos would reproach mc from the grave, had I
failed in this act of justice to them and the others i
who fought and fell by my side. i
You will suspect me. Mr. Chairman, of having j
warm feelings on this subject. So I have; and I
l ive given them utterance, as a matter of duty j
In all this, however, I by no means detract-from (
he gallant conduct and bearing of the Mississippi i
regiment. At other times and places, on that i
bloody field, they did all that their waruust adnirera
could haye desired. But let me i\sV'again, i
why w is this subject introduced into this debate I
Why does the gentleman say "the troop* of the j
North " gave way, when he means only a single
regiment ? Why is all this, but for the purpose
f disparaging the North for the benefit of the |
South? Why, hut for the purpose of furnishing!
nateriuls for that ceaseless, never-ending, eternal I ,
heme of "Southern chivalry ?"
Mr. Chairman, the people of the free States I (
lave as strong an nttaehinont for their brethren | j
>f the South at this very moment as they had I |
luring the days of the Revolution, or at any sub- I ]
equent period; and they will not suffer that at- ! '
achmcnt to be destroyed by disunioni-ts or de- t
igntng men ni the No.ra or in the South. We i
auve our disunionlsts in the North, sir, and they
annoy us not a little. Were your troublesome
men in the North, they would be the Garrisons,
the Tappans, and the Gerrit Smiths; and were
our Garrisons, and Tsppans, and Gerrit Smiths,
in the South, they would be the disunionists
against whom the moderate men of all parties
would have to guard. I tell you, sir, that we, the
Representatives of the North, will aid you to preserve
your constitutional rights, as we have ever
done. We are not alienated from you , nor have j
your ultra men yet driven us entirely ' to the
wall." We are ready to meet you now on any
fair grounds, and fight with you side by side for
your rights and for ours, and defend those rights
under the Constitution from encroachment in any
quarter. But, sir, we want to hear no more about
disunion. We are attached to the Union?aye,
devotedly are we attached to it. We regard it as
the Hrk of safety for the American People. We
know that the reali2 ition of the hopes of human j
freedom throughout the world depends upon its
perpetuity. And shall we ruthlessly crush these
hopes forever? Hhall that beacon light which
our fathers raised to cheer and guide the friends I
of freedom, be extinguished by us? Kxtinguish \
it if you will, but know that when you do it the
world is enshrouded in darkness more frightful
than Kgyptian night.
I know the people of mv State. I know the peonlcofthe
creat West and Northwest; and I know |
their devotion to the American Union. And I
feel warranted in b.iytng In my place here, that
when you talk to them of destroying this Union,
there is not a man throughout that vast region
who will not, raise hia hand and swear hy the
Kternnl Ood, as I do now, it shall never he done,
if our arms can save it. Illinois proffered to the
country nine regiments to aid in the vindication
of her rights in the w ir with Mexico. And should
danger threaten the Union from any source, or in
any quarter, in the North or in the South, she
will he ready to furnish twice, thrice, yes. four
times that number, to march w here that danger
may he, to return when it is passed, or return no
of onto.
On Southern .If grew on. th? Pnrpo.i's ot th> I 'man.
imtl Comjhit'ilit" F.ff'fJ* of Shn-it/timl Fi' ?
Delivered In the tioni* of Keprerrntalives, I t t> C, DCVt.
Mr. CAMP BULL. having obtained thetl .or at
the close of the remarks of Mr Vfnaih.f, of
North Carolina, addressed the Committee as foliows:
Mr. Chairman
Before submitting my views upon this all-absorhing
topic of Sltvery, I desire to defend the
section of the country which I in part have the
honor to represent from unfounded charges, which
are constantly preferred ngaiust it. We had
scarcely taken the preliminary sieps for an organization
of this House, before the South in tones of
thundering eloquence denounced the people of the
North as 'aggressors," as ' recreants to the Constitution,"
as having for years been guilty of "oppression
" to their brethren of the South, In this
Hall?in the social circle?upou the Lighw iy
everywhere we met with this charge Sir, I pro- !
pose brit tly to examiue the state of this account
of " aggression.
How does it stind, ns to tirritoruil ac-/um:ioH<,
siuco the formation of the Union We of the
North have been opposed to an extension of our
domain. We have been taught by the w.truing
voice of past Republics, that
" Kxtemltd empire, like ?x pamlr. I gold.
Kxcbsiijres solid stren/th for fo*bl? splendor "
Southern polity has been different, and we have
In lM>d, we annexed Louisiana
In IM'.i, we annexed the Territory of Florida.
In Is'', we annexed the State of Texas
In 1s IV w e annexed by conquest California and
N' W Mexico.
In IS 19, we have a stronger movement for annexing
t uba than we had ten yeirs ago in thvor
of annexing Texas.
And now the honorable gentleman from.North
Carolina |Mr Cf.movax) notifies us that after
the next Presidential election we will annex that
part of Mexico on the Onlf, extending to Vera
Thr South does all this, and still persists In the
cry of " aggression 1 aggression !" Sir, the North
has yielded to this system too long, and now she
is determined to stop it.
Mr. Chairman, the Constitution guaranties to
every ritixen the right of petition Some of our
Northern people believe that in Territories over i
which Congress had power to legislate, slavery I
should be cither immediately or prospectively i
C., MARCH 7, 1850.
bolished. They sent here their petitions. Southrn
power treated them with contempt. and tram
led them under foot! Was there no "aggresion
" in refusing our people the exercise of that
acred right 1
* #**
A colleague of mine, now upon this floor, [Mr. I
Jinnraus.j was sent here to represent as intelli- ?
ent nnd as patriotic a people as is to be found in i
he whole land He presented, in the discharge I
f his ofiici il duty, a series of resolutions against
livery nnd the si ire trade. Tiny were obnox- I
jus to the South, and with the nid of Northern 1
oughfsces, who are fast finding their level, you
xpelled him from this Hall, and attempted to die- I
race him. Yet, during this session, we find that <
eftre we perfect nn org miration, a proposition is
oldly made to </i?jo/re ifir Uuion, by members <
rem Southern States, in the event that the people's
^preventatives pass a particular law; yet noth- I
ig like ennnr is proposed by those lately so |
rnsitive. I
Who has been "oppressed in dividing the |
onors and emoluments of office? The poor,
own-troii'leu South ? She has almost monopozed
the important offices sinoe the formation of
je GoTernment. Let those who wish to have
final evidence of her wrongs in this regard, exmine
the Blue Book Virginia suffers! There
re still a few of the l! first families " unprovided
>r. and it is an set of unparalleled aggression !
Vhy, sir, so craving is her thirst for these honors,
hat ! see in one town (all the whites having been
rovided for, I suppose) they procure the appointment
of a negro as Postmaster!
How mnch did we ngzress in org inizing this
louse ? And who gave the strongest evidence of
desire to orgnnize by geographical tests ? Wc
Iways found, on this side of the I louse, Southern
It 'A enough to hold the balance of power, who
ireferrid the election of a Southern Pemocrot to a
Northern Whig. On the other side, 8i?thern
lf| pipe,! ji Jf/iijtu Whiff in
ireference to a Northern Pemocrat. And if, in the
tonrse of our efforts to organise, any candidate
if either party was suspected of having overseen
he city of Buffalo, his fate was sealed.
But, Mr. Chairman, I am consuming too much
r Ln..n . Il?it,.,l In n,.? in thti
II tnr orjl-l UUUI ?? u.v tu UV?.?...U(S tuu.
iceount of aggression
What has the North done to produce this lond
md continual clatter about ' aggression P Rear
n mind, an net of aggression must he an act of
i rons;. So long as we act for the promotion of
hat which is morally right, we cannot aggress.
VIuch complaint is made about negroes running
>ff to the free States. I suppose they do sometimes !
I'ray away. Rut if you will keep property that j
aill run off, is it our fault ? We do not turnout 1
:o catch runaway negroes. There is a reason for j
hat. The farmer, in that beautiful valley which
I have the honor to represent in part, has no slave
o till his soil. His family depend upon the labor
of their own hands for support He cannot, he
will not, abandon his plough and his fields, mount
his horse, when he hears that a negro has been
Hfu 'D the neighborhood, and follow in pursuit,
Kpnspicion that he may be the slave of some
member of Congress from Virginia. He has ex- j
amined the Constitution, and finds nothing there
whicl^piakes this his duty The village mechanic in
Ohio, who drives the jack-plane, and earns his
bread by the sweat of his brow, will not abnndon
his honest pursuits, when he sees a man pa*s in 1
the street, with a skin somewhat darker than his
own. and a budget on his buck, follow him. knock
bim down, and tie him, because there is a possibility
that a Mississippi planter may hold a mortgage
on his bones, flesh, and sinews ! Our fair
countrywomen, yielding to the tender sympathies
which always adorn their sex. when inquired of ;
by a disconsolate passer by of their own sex. who
perhaps may carry in her arms an infant slightly
tinged, may point out the neurest and best road to
L'anada. is there anything wrong in this? Point
ii out.
On this point let me remark, that whilst the
great mass of all parties in my State disclaim all
design to interfere with your " peculiar institu- j
lion '' in States where it constitutionally exists,
they remember, and will never forget, that they, |
too, have an institution the operations of which
n?e somewhat ' peculiar," which they call Freti.'omf
They have tasted its blessings, and they
will throw no obstacles in the way of all who may
s'rive to obtain them. If our Southern brethren, :
then, will have si ives, and these slaves will run off
to Ohio, they must ctpture them themselves.
Rut we aggress on the South because our political
power increases more rapidly than hers. That
is the result of an increase in population. We
:annot help it if there are peculiarities about our
nstitution which produce this result. It is cer.
lainly not wrong if we obey that injunction of
I ioly Writ, " Multiply and replenish the earth "
This complaint comes with a poor grace, especially
from the gentleman from North Carolina, | Mr.
Ci.ini.man | who has, as yet, withheld from hla
country his aid in removing this source of inequality.
Rut we are charged with designing or threatening
to aggress by tne passage of the Proviso. I intend
to vote for the admission of California as a
State with this clause in her Constitution, nnd for
a Territorial law for New Mexico cmbruciug it
We are told that it excludes the South fromnfnir
shine of the territory acquired by common blood
and common treasure; and that it weakens the
title to their nronerlv. auil l.ri veutu them from
removing It thither. This in not true. That
Proviso is and has been in full force in the State
of Ohio and the Northwestern Territory for sixty
years. A large portion of her best citizens are
from the South. The district which I immediately
represent embrnces a large body of the lands of
the Virginia military district, to which VirgininnH
and North Carolinians emigrate ! with their property.
Some took slaves with them, to whom their
families were nttacheJ. although they knew that
the moment the foot of the slave touched that soil,
with the master's consent, one of the peculiarities
of our institution made him a freeman. And here
let me say that the most thoroughgoing Kree-Soil
men, and the most violent Abolitionists there, are
those furnished us by North Carolina and Virginia.
I would be entirely safe in allowing my
action here to be governed on this subject by the
views of those in my district who came from slave
States. Their warmth in favor of Free Soil may,
I suppose, he attributed to that same principle of
human action which makes the reformed drunkard
the most ardent in pressing onward the cause
cf temperance ; or the converted sinner the cause
of Christianity. These men had heen eye-witnesses
to the evil effects of slavery, not the least
of which Is its tendency to reduce to the level of
the degraded slave the free labor of the poor
white man where it exists. If the Proviso is applied
to these Mexican Territories, the Southern
man as well as the Northern man may take his
property there; he may take his negroes if lie
chooses ; hut if he takes them, they cease to be
property or things, and are mnke pnton t onh/.
The honorable member from Mississippi |Mr.
Brown] takes a bold position, if he is sincere,
and I will not question it, notwithstanding his
preposterous assertion. 1 rend from his printed
speech |Mr. C. here rend from Mr. Brown's
speech ;]
" For mvsclf, t recauti si.avkrv as a orkat mora!.,
a ?< iapolitical, a?i> kkijoioi s blessing ?a aliasing
Mr. H1LLIARD. Will the gentlemen from i
Ohio allow me to explain and correct him ? i
Mr. CAMPBELL. With greet pleasure.
Mr. MILLIARD. I said that 1 would refrain
from diecuaeing the question ae a moral one,
because we hold no power to legislate on the
morality of the question. To enter into a discussion
here on that point might be deemed nn
Admission of the jurislio'ion of Congress over
the sulject.
Mr. C AMPBELL. I have not misunderstood
Ihe honorable gentleman, although I have not yet
had the pleasure of reading his priuted speech.
To come directly to the point, the gentleman can
now tell us whether he rf girds slavery as a moral
evil or as a blessing.
Mr. MILLIARD. I do not regard it as a moral
evil in the States where it exists
Mr. CAMPBELL. Well, then, Mr. Chairman,
it will be my duty ns well as my pleasure to
prove that it is a moral curse. 1 shall do so by
referring directly to the opinions of some men
which, notwithstanding my high regard for the
gentleman from Alabama, are entitled to far more
weight than his
Mr MILLIARD. I will ask the gentleman
froni Ohio a question. Admitting it to lie morally
wrong, what right have we to legislate upon the
moral question ?
Mr. CAMPBELL. Sir, I will answer the gentleman's
question by putting one to every member
of the Committee. Admitting it to be morally
wrong, bow do you make it politically right ? You
cannot by any principle of philosophy that I have ,
cvpr henrii ?f timkp thnt which isuhsolutelv mor
ally wrong politically right by legislation. Why?
What power, asks the gentleman, in a tone of ap- 1
parent triumph, have we, as the representatives '
of the people, to legislate with a view to promote ,
public morula ? Is it possible that such a question
is seriously propounded, and must be seriously
answered? What power? What right? A power
which is the foundation of all civilized government
The first irreat obiect of all law, of all
legislation, is to enforce that which is morally
right, ami prevent that which is morally wrong
It is to accomplish this grand purpose that Ciovernmenfs
are instituted among men.
But, Mr. Chairman, let us proceed with an examination
of facts bearing upon the moral, social,
and political effects of Slavery, and show how fir
Southern gentlemen, in the frenzy of their excitement,
have suffered themselves to depart from the
principles and feelings of their revolutionary ancestors.
And, sir. in this connection, I lay down
what may be regarded by some as a bold propo
mtioti. I assert, that one ot the very designs 0/ in*
founders of this R-public, n h-n 'hey rebelled against
the power of Great Britain, and formed a union of
the Provinces, sens to prevent the extension of Slavery ;
to do that which you denouuce us as mad fanatics
for proposing, and for which, when accomplished
in part only, acoordiug to their designs, you say
you intend to destroy the great work of their
hands?this glorious Confederacy of States?the
happy Union?which secures liberty to millions,
and h s commanded the admiration of the world
The gentleman from North Carolina (Mr.
Ci.iNGMcsl hflists that the ball of ih??*R<>?&><ttion k
was started at Mecklenburg, where a resolution
was passed in 1774. I have looked into the history
of those d.iyi^ k ?ry patriotic
meetings in the iftmh then. The gentleman Wm
permit me to show the reasons which led to the
Let us carry our imagination back to Virginia,
the Old Dominion, as she was in 1774. 1 hold
in my hand the 1st vol 1th Series of American
Archives, published by order of Congress. It
contains an account of various public meetings
held preparatory to the then approaching conflict
of those weak Colonies with the giant nation of
the earth. The patriots of Virginia proposed a
State Convention at Williamsburg. County meetings
of the people were held to appoint delegates,
and declare their principles and determinations.
Mr. C. here read as follows, from page r?23 :
" At a meeting of the freeholders and other inhabitants of
the county of Culpepper, in Virginia, assembled st th?
Court-House of the Aid county, on Thursday, the 7th of
July, 1771, to consider the most effective mulnoil to preserve
the rights arul liberties of America
Haust Pknui.iton, Esq . Mmlerotor.
* ? * * a *
" ttesolveil, That the importing stages and convict servants
is injurious to this colony, us it obstructs the popula
lion of it with freemen unit u-eful manufacturers ; ami I' '
ire will not buy amy such slue or convict servant hereafter
to he ii/ifiortea."
This uicetiug appointed "deputies' to the convention.
A Voick. " That is only a resolution against
the slave trade.'"
Mr. CAMPBELL. True; such is the fact.
But why did they resolve on this? To prevent
the spread of slavery. Why ? Because it was a
political evil. There are ttco ways in which you
may extend slavery. One, by extending it over
new countries, opening new markets?increasing
bp ilanMMad and ???M(inf.nt.lj the vftlue?thus Inducing
an increased production. The other, by
importations. The spirit of the resolution shows
that a prohibition of its extension was the design.
But if gentlemen will be patient, I will not only
show that they opposed its extension, but, even in
the South, sought the Union for the purpose of
abolishing it where it existed.
Similar resolutions were passed by primary
meetings of the people throughout Virginia and
other Southern provinces, now States.
Ky I'rinoe Ucvge's county - - July, 1771, page 103
Jiy Nanseiin mi county ... nun
Hy Caroline county .... " '< ? Ml
Ky Surry county .... " " " OU'l
lly K^rfax 00,(Washington in thechuir)" " " (KM
lly Hwriiion county ... r un 61(1
Hy Princes* Anns county - a 11 11 611
And by variou* otber counties which 1 need not name.
The State Convention assembled at Williamsburg
on the 1 at of August, 1774. They adopted
this resoluuion:
24. llrsolred " Wo will neither ourselves import nor
purchase any slave or slavea imported l>jr any other person
after the tirat day of Noreinber next, either from \frisn, the
IfVtl Indies, or any other jihwe."?1'age t>7.
This Convention recommended a Congress to
meet at Philadelphia on the first Monday of September,
1774. Thomas Jevkkrson, the great
apostle of liberty, could not attend the Convention,
but he sent to it a letter expressing his opinions
and wishes. I read an extract from page
fit* 6 :
" For the moat trifling reason*, and sometime* for no conceivable
reaaou at .VI, his Majesty has rejected lawa of the
most salutary tendency Tub abolition ok domestic
slavery is tub oreate*t object of iirsirr in these
colonies, where it was unbapp'ly introduced in their infant
state lint previous to the enfranchisement of the slaves
we hsve, it is necessary to exclude all further importations
froin Africa. Yet our repeated attempts to effect this by
prohibitions, and bv iiupnMug duties which might amount to
prohibition, hare been hitherto defeated by his Majesty's
negative- thus preferring the immediate advantagesof a few
At'riran f'otsal s to the i.astino interest of the Amrri
ritn States, and to the rioiits op human nature okkply
wounded bt this inpamol's master ! "
How do gentlemen relish Mr. Jefferson's views
upon the mtral and political questions now raised
on this floor ?
North Carolina held her Provincial Convention,
not at Mecklenburg, but at Newborn. The honorable
gentleman from that State on the other side
of the House, [Mr. Ashe.) the other day expressed
to my colleague [Mr. Root] a desire to
know who from North Carolina bad been opposed
to extending slavery. I have " the documents''
here for his information Nearly every county in
this State was represented in this Coivention.
There were sixty-nine "deputies." It was con
vened on the 27th of August, 177 t, and passed
this resolution. On pnge 735 the gentleman will
find the names of the deputies and the resolution:
" Uesnlred, Thut we will pot unport any store or slaves,
or purrhuse any slare or slores unpoiteit or brought into
the Proritnv by others,from any part of the wot 11, a fter the
first day of Xortmber next."
Mr. Chairman, I will not go further into details
of the action of the Provinces separately. The
deputies th?>y appointed and instructed assembled
at Philadelphia on the 5th of September, 177 1.
T a# iva l.a/alr nnrttt tlmt fluvnttil.'urrp nf mm nnt wIaI
?' ,u"? Mf"? ...... I
fathers It was in the dark hour of our political
history. It was " the dsy that tried men's souls"
Yet they resolved to redress the grievances inflicted
upon them by Great P.ritian, or perish nobly
in the attempt. IP? are men of rrords?thnt were
men of ad ion. What was their design ? To form
a Union. The Provinces must be united. I have
here the hontt of thrir Union?the first Union.' It
is called the "Articles of Association." It was
the bond of our fathers with the Almighty, whose
all-protecting arm they desired as the shield to
save them in the unequal contest they were about
to engage in; they pledge by their "rirtire ami
thnr honor"
Sir, I listened the other day to the honorable
gentleman from Georgia ] Mr. Stephensj with the
most profound satisfaction The power of his eloquent
appeal in favor of the purchase of Washington's
Parcwell Address, marred as it was by n
repetition of the unjust.charge of " Northern aggression,''
could not. did not fail to awaken the
tender sympathies and feelings of every heart not
? L ~U ? I a a ~ iL. : 1 .# . ..
wnuuy u>-<! ?u <?? linpuiBm oi patriotism. lie
spoke of the incalculable value of the autographs
of our revolutionary forefathers. Sir, I call that
honorable gentleman's attention to these autographs
of the members of the Kirst Continental
Congrtss. [Here Mr. C held up the Articles of
Association, unanimously adopted by the Continental
Congress, containing a fac-simile of the '
signatures appended to it | Look nt the bold 1
hand of Washington, of 1'ktrick Henry, sad of 1
Lee; of I looper and Caswell; of Jay ant Dunne; 1
of the Adamses; of Gadsden and the Uatledges; '
and of Stephen Hopkins. If the gentleman, 1
prompted by those nobler feelings of his naturs, '
would regard as pnc-lru an old manuscript letter '
of a father to hia son, containing adrice upon his 1
leaving the paternal roof to embark upon the 1
stortny sea or this world, what should be his ten- (
eration for this document! How much should *
he, how much will he sierifiee to preserve iavio- 1
late this written pledge of our fathen to the God *
of battles that they would check this aokaowlodg
The honorable gentleman proceeds with arguments
to prove that gre.it blessings ore conferred
upon the African l?y making him a slave!
Now, sir, if the gentleman can make this position
good by sound argument, and if the honorable
member from North Carolina |Mr. Cumgman]
cm make good his declaration that where slavery
exists you nod the greatest degrcu uf virilization,
refinement, wealth, comfort, ami happiness, I
pledge myself to abandon the Proviso, and oppose
it here and elsewhere, with as much honest ardor
as 1 now support it. If slavery is a blessing to
the slave, how is it that the great, the good, and
the wise, of every civilised land upon earth, have
never learned the fact ? This is a great nge we
live in, and it has been reserved for the keen perceptive
faculties of the honorable member from
Mississippi to make tho grand discovery that
the true wiy to make a negro happy is to put
hint in chains, and under the lash of the taskmaster
r A discovery somewhat parallel to this
in importance, was made by one of the gentleman's
political associates, but a few years ago,
to wit that the way to civilixe the Mexican race
was to kuook out their brains!
If the position of the honorable gentleman is
correct, will he tell us why our laws do not regard
that mm who steals the African Infant from its
mother's breast, and hears it to perpetual bondage?who
forces from his native lan l the father,
to rivet upon him the chains and fetters of slavery?as
a philanthropist, and not as a ftlon ?
Why dees he not introduce a hill,entitled ''abill
to make Africa happy," providing for the repeal
of all laws prohibiting the slave-trade, and giving
to tho philanthropist* who will engage in it, 160
acres of land for each native African brought
into slavery?
I must examine the morals involved in this
question of slavery. Having learned something
of the high tone of moral character accorded,
justly, no doubt, to my honornhle friend from
Alabama, |Mr. Ifit.t-uun | I listened attentively
to his eloquent speech, expecting him to base his
argument upon a different foundation. 1 will
not say he "dodged," but I do think he evaded
the question, for he was particular to etate with
emphasis, that he ooald not discus* the<|uestion
in its moral hearings, because, he said, we had
nothing to do her* with public morals) From
what little I have seen here. I am induced to
believe that the conduct of many is made to conform
to this "platform." Sir, 1 profess no eitra
degree of morals myself, but I may be permitted
lo say, considering its source, this avowal shocked
*1 curse of slavery ? Sir, the gentleman invoked
in most pathetic and heart reaching language the
spirit of Washington to check his Northern brethren
in what he termed their disposition of aggression
Could At* be availing, I, too, would invoke
the return of the illustrious dead from the. totalis
of Mount Vernon, of Monticello, and of (iuincy
to stay the mad career of those who propose to
destroy those glorious institutions which are the
results of their toil?the fruits of their struggles
for liberty I If I could but command the eloquence
of the gentleman from Georgia, I could appeal,
perhaps successful!v. to hint, to liis colleague
? + J -- ~'7 O?'l
bin associates of the sunny South, to come buck to
these principles ami purposes?to these holy designs
of our common ancestors?to joiu with us,
in the spirit of brotherly lovo and brotherly kind
ness, iu an effort to redeem this solemn pledge,
entered into in the dreury hour of their misfortune,
by the founders of that Government which
has secured to us all the blessings we cm hope for
iu our earthly career.
Mr. Chairman, I will read the extracts from
these Articles of Association, which are applicable
to the point:
" We do, for ourselves and the iohabiUnts of the several
felonies whom we represent. firmly asree ami associate under
the sacred ties of virtue, honor, and love of our country, as
follows :
2. " That we will neither imjiort nor purchase uny slure
Import ill after the di <1 day of Iiesgmher next ; after irl,h
lime we will toholly ilisruntinue the shire hole, ami will
neither be oonoeinsd in It ourselves, nor will we hire our
resse's, nor sell our commodities or manufactures, to those
ho are consented in it."
* * *
11. ' That a eommlt'ee be chosen in every county city, ant
town, by those who are qualified to vote for Kepresentativrs
in the Legislature, whose business it shall he attentively t >
jtuerve thee' ml net of all person* touching this Association;
and when it shall be made to ap)*-ar, to 'he satisfsntiou of a
majority of any such committee, that any person within the
limits of their appointment has violated this Association, that
such majority do forthwith cause the truth of the case to he
published in the gazette^ to the end that all such koks to the
rights of British Amerira may he publicly known, and morermlbi
contemned us the enemies rf net man liherli/; aud
thenceforth we respectively wi'l break ofl all dealings with
him or her."
14. " And we do further agree and resolve that we witl hare
no trade, commerce, dealing*, or intercourse whatever, with
any colony or provinne in North America, which shall not.
accede to, or which shall hereafter violate thin Association,
but will hold thein as unworthy of the right* of freemen, anil
a* inimical to the liberties of this country."
"The forenoing Association, being determined upon by
the < ongress, was ordered to be subscribed by the several
members thereof; and thereupon, we have hereunto set our
respective names accordingly.
in t ongress, PhiUde'ptiia, October 'JI, 1774.
i'i etulent.
Nrtr Unmftihire?John Sullivan, Nathaniel folsom.
Massachusetts Hay?Thomas lushing, Samuel A Jams,
Joan Adams, Hubert Treat Paine.
Hhate Islani?Stephen Hopkins, Samuel Ward.
Connecticut?Kliphalet Dyer, linger Sherman, Silas
A'eve York? lease |a>w John Alsop, John Jay, James
1'uane. Philip Livingston, William h'loyd, Henry \\ inner,
Simon liocrum
Arm Jersey?James Winner, William Living.ton, Stephen
Crane, Klehard Smith. John He Hart
JVirniytranu/?Jmeph t;?ll,.way John Hi. kin*"?, Charles
Humphreys. Thomas MiDLn, lid war I llul lie, John Morton,
liaorgs Kuss
The lover tyvdoi, A''??i/Ji Are?t ? ?ar Kodr.ey,
Thomas MrKur. rg? lead *
Maryiao-I ? Matthww Tilfksns, Thomas Johnsen, jr.
Wiinam P.?a, San.a., t hast
iirrisAt-JtMatf Attain.^, tin rgs Washington, Pat
rick Henry, jr diehard ItTan-i H-fijamia Harrison Kdinni. t
North Carolina? William Hooper Joseph Hewes, Richard
Snath f arobmi ? Henry Mi.bt'.s?on, TVinas l.yneh, Chrif
topher (iadsden, John KuU?i|t. Edward Ktitle ge.
Mr. BOW DON. I woulJ inquire of the gentleman
from Ohio whether he calls that the Constitution
of the Union ?
Mr.CAMPUKLL. I will with pleasure inform
the honorable gentleman from Alabama. It is not
the last Constitution of the Union, hut higher evidence
to prove the point I muke, which is, that
the Provinces formed their first Union, among other
things, to cluck the progress of slavery ! The gentleman
from Alabama, on the other side of the Hall,
[Mr. I\ue,| the other day spoke of the Continental
Congress, and of the Declaration of Independence,
as a production from that august body of patriots,
called for by the pressure of publio opinion from
without. So with this document, which is a declaration
two years older than the Declaration of
Independence itself. The outside pressure of public
opinion on the subject of slavery, expressed at
the various primary meetings of the people themselves,
some of which I have referred to, required,
as a preliminary step to the contemplated resistance,
a solemn pledge that slavery should go no
further, and it must be borne in mtnd that these
fathers carried with them the same spirit and the
same design when they subsequently entered into
more formal articles, passed the Ordinance of 17S7, I
and formed our present Constitution.
Georgia was not represented in the Continental
Congress, as you will observe. The reasons which
prevented a representation 1 need not detail. Still
the patriots of that province in that good old time,
unlike her misguided but no doubt sincere Representatives
on this floor, were determined not to be
behind the other colonies in their efforts to secure
to themselves, and to extend to those In slavery the
blessings of freedom.
Georgia proclaimed her sentiments on the 12th
of January, 177ft, after the adjournment of the
Continental Congress, (page 11 'tfi)
" We, therefore, tlie KeereseuTHtives cf the rxtenNire
Diarict of Oarieei, in tha colony of Georgia, having now
as?embled in CongTeas, by authority ami free choice of the
inhabitant* of said 1'ialfiol, now freed from their letter*, do
"?> 'To show the world that we are not influenced by any
contracted or inlesesteti motives, Imt ? generut philanthropy
for all mankind, of whatever climate, langvuge, or rum
pleriun, we bereliy declare our disapprobation and abhorrence
of the unnatural jwa tu* of elarery in America^(howerer
the uncultirete<l slate of our country,or other ipeciout argunients
may pleail for it,) a practice founded in injustice ami
cruelty, and highly itangerous to our liberties, (as well *a
lire*,tdebasmg part of our fellow-creatures below men, and
corrvfill- g the virtut and moral* of the rest, and is laying
the basis of that liberty we contend for, (and which we pray
the Almighty to continue to the latest nosterity,) upon a rery
wrong foundation. We, therefore Resalee, at ull times to
uf our utmost enden rot t for the manumission of our stares
in this colouy, upon the most safe and equitable footing for
the master and thennelves."
Such was the action?these were the sentiments
upon this question of moml and political right,
when the foundation of our great superstructure
was laid, and which was subsequently cemented
with the blood of our heroic ancestors.
Sir, I have offered the testimony exclusively
Southern, not of Northern proviuces. I would that
we oould but summon here those veterans to give
us with a living voice their opinions just as they
are here recorded. Would Washington be scouted
from this Ilnll as a recreant to the heat interests
of his country ? Would tho Virginian denounce
JelFerson ss a traitor, because he said slavery was
an execrable practice; or Patrick Henry as a" finatic,"
because ho avowed his devotion to the
cause of human frecdoqi, in that ever memorable
burst of eloquence in the Virginia Convention,
closing with " Give me liberty, or give me death ! "
Suppose this Hall was now occupied by the old
Continental Congress?this question raised, and
they unanimously declare slavery a moral and political
evil?would the honorable gentlemen front
Alabama, Mississippi, North Carolina,nnd Georgia,
denounce them as recreants to their country?
Oh ! no. Why, then, do they disavow the principles
they proclaimed 1 Does not the experience
of the last half century prove that they truly foresaw
the blighting effects of this evil of which they
desired to rid themselves 1 The rapid increase of
the States, where slavery does not exist, in power
and strength, and everything calculated to render
life agreeable, establishes the wisdom of their determination.
Some of the States who were parties to this obligation
have redeemed their pledges. We now
propose to carry out, as far as we can, their original
" Mr. STANLY. To abolish slavery in the
States ?
Mr. CAMPBELL. Wo will not do that where
under the Constitution it exists. We leave that
matter for you to attend to as you like . but we,
having power over the Territories, intend to follow
these wholesome counsels from the founders
of the Government, and exclude slavery from
them forever by the power of public sentiinen'?
by the power of the law?and, if necessary, in
in uiiiaiarng me nmjosiy 01 me ntw, uj > ? |iu">.
of the sword!
Mr. I50WDON. Will the gentleman from
Ohio show us the power in the Constitution to
pass such a law ?
Mr. CAMPBELL. I hare much to say yet in
the little time that is left me I have spoken by
time before, and if I regarded the constitutional
question as doubtful, I would not now go into it.
If the honorable gentleman desires a discussion cf
that question with me, 1 will meet him on any
stump, either in Alabama or Ohio, after Cr ogress
adjourns. It will save some money to uisruss it
in that ray. For the present, I oor tent myself
by saying that the question of power ha* besa decided
in our favor by Congress, and by the various
Administrations from the organisation l^e
lioveriiment to the present time, and it will soon
be settled again, notwithstanding the threats of a
dissolution of the Union! Jf the gentleman intends
to delists that question here, I desire to be
informed in what article of the Conetitutiou i? t he
power found which enables you to stretch a wire
on the line of :W? 30', your proposed compromise,
and legislate to oo'tihluh thirty on ontsvi'o!
11 and prohUut W on fL otk'r i And on what principle
of po/tttfil juuice to the North do you claim
that an Alabaminn may go with one hundred
ilavew, settle on one side of this wire, and oom-*
into this hall with a power of tuty-one rotf,
whilst the Ohioan, who takes property equal in
raluo to a Bute on the other side, comas here
with tho power of one rott only ? The arguments
jffered on thane points remind me of those once
jffered by the opposition in relation to the improvements
of our Western rivers and harbors,
iLaitainf that the constitutionality as well as ths

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