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HE Kentucky legislature on the day of its assembling, the seventh of November, for the session of 1798, was the scene of one of those dramatic incidents which profoundly affect the history of nations. Nothing was more improbable than that any action of this frontier commonwealth should prove to be of significance in the history of the United States. Yet, when John Breckinridge arose in his place to give notice that he would on the next day introduce certain resolutions, he set in motion one of the greatest political movements in American history. The governor, General James Garrard, according to the custom of the day, had just opened the session in person and delivered an address which contained a declaration of firm attachment to the Federal Constitution and a recommendation that the legislature should support the General Government. He, however, had qualified this recommendation by proceeding to suggest that the legislature should protest against "all unconstitutional laws and impolitic proceedings"; and he reminded his hearers that Kentucky, by its situation, was fortunate in being "remote from the contaminating influence of European politics, steady to the prin

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