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February 8, 1858, the House by three, votes refused to admit Kansas under the Lecompton. constitution.

On February 18 James S. Green [Mo.] introduced in the Senate the bill of the Committee on Territories to admit Kansas under the Lecompton constitution. On March 4 he proposed a substitute admitting both Kansas and Minnesota. Minnesota, however, was dropped, and on March 23 the bill was passed by a vote of 33 to 25. On April 1 the House rejected the Senate bill by a majority of 42 votes. At the instigation of Senator John J. Crittenden [Ky.] Representative William Montgomery [Pa.] then moved a substitute providing for a popular vote on the Lecompton constitution. This was adopted by a vote of 120 to 112. On the following day (April 2) the Senate rejected the substitute bill by a vote of 32 to 23. On April 13 the Senate moved the appointment of a committee to confer on the question with a similar committee of the House. James S. Green [Mo.], Robert M. T. Hunter [Va.], and William H. Seward [N. Y.] were appointed on the committee. On the following day the House decided to choose a committee by the casting vote of the Speaker, James L. Orr [S. C.]. He appointed William H. English [Ind.], Alexander H. Stephens [Ga.], and William A. Howard [Mich.].

The votes of Stephens, an Administration Democrat, and Howard, a Republican, offset each other, and that of English, a Northern Democrat who was understood to be in sympathy with Senator Douglas's opposition to the Lecompton constitution, was left to decide. English submitted a plan to the joint committee by which the people of Kansas were to vote simply on a question of whether they would agree to accept Congress's disposition of public lands in the new State, and, if the vote were in the affirmative, the Territory would be admitted under the Lecompton constitution, and if in the negative another constitutional convention would be held (after it had been determined by a census that the Territory contained sufficient population to be admitted) to determine whether the State should be admitted with or without slavery. The joint committee adopted English's plan and presented a bill with its provisions. This

meant that Karsas would be rewarded by land grants as well as immediate Statehood if it accepted the Lecompton constitution, and would be punished if it did not accept it by pecuniary loss as well as by an indefinite postponement of Statehood.

On April 30 the House adopted the English bill by 112 votes to 103, and the Senate by 31 votes to 22, and it was signed by President Buchanan.


Kansas voted in the negative on the land question. After a census had been taken which showed, what everybody had known, that Kansas had the requisite population to become a State, the Kansas legislature decreed a new constitutional convention. Delegates to this were elected by the people, and the convention was held at Wyandotte in March, 1859. It framed a Free State constitution, which was ratified at a popular election in October, at which Republican State officers and a Republican Congressman were elected. A bill to admit Kansas under the Wyandotte constitution was introduced in the House by Galusha A. Grow [Pa.] on February 15, 1860, and passed by the Republican House on April 11, by a vote of 134 to 73, but negatived by the Democratic Senate by 32 votes to 27. On January 21, 1861, the day when the Southern Senators resigned their seats, William H. Seward [N. Y.] again presented the bill in the Senate and it passed by a vote of 36 to 16. On January 28, on motion of Mr. Grow, the House passed the bill by a vote of 119 to 42, and on approval by President Abraham Lincoln the long-suffering Territory became a member of the Union.

The senatorial term of Stephen A. Douglas [Ill.] was about to expire, and he realized that he could gain no assistance in his reëlection from the Administration, the postmasters, and other national officials who, by their positions, were political leaders of the Democratic party in his State being generally indifferent to his success and, in some cases, actively hostile. Accordingly he prepared himself for "the fight of his life."

The Republicans realized their opportunity to secure a party colleague for Senator Lyman Trumbull, and so nominated the ablest and most popular Republican in their State, Douglas's inveterate opponent, Abraham Lincoln. On June 16, 1858, at the close of the convention, which was held at Springfield, the State capital, Lincoln accepted the nomination in what was thus far the best speech of his career. He carefully prepared it and read it to his friends. William H. Herndon, his law partner, said: "Lincoln, deliver that speech as read and it will make you President." Others objected to the extreme position he had taken in declaring that the nation could not continue half slave and half free. Jesse K. Dubois said that it was "a damned fool speech" which would lose him the election. But Lincoln replied: "The time has come when these sentiments should be uttered, and, if it is decreed that I should go down because of this speech, then let me go down linked to the truth." And, after the defeat which was prophesied by Dubois had come to pass, Lincoln said: "If I had to draw a pen across my record, and erase my whole life from remembrance, and I had a choice allowed me what I might save from the wreck, I should choose that speech and leave it to the world just as it is."



If we could first know where we are, and whither we are tending, we could better judge what to do, and how to do it. We are now far into the fifth year since a policy was initiated with the avowed object and confident promise of putting an end to slavery agitation. Under the operation of that policy that agitation has not only not ceased, but has constantly augmented. In my opinion, it will not cease until a crisis shall have been reached and passed. "A house divided against itself cannot stand." I believe this Government cannot endure permanently half slave and half free. I do not expect the Union to be dissolved I do not expect the house to fall-but I do expect it ill cease to be divided. It will become all one thing, or all the other. Either the opponents of slavery will arrest the further

spread of it, and place it where the public mind shall rest in the belief that it is in the course of ultimate extinction; or its advocates will push it forward till it shall become alike lawful in all the States, old as well as new, North as well as South. Have we no tendency to the latter condition?

Let any one who doubts carefully contemplate that now almost complete legal combination-piece of machinery, so to speak-compounded of the Nebraska doctrine and the Dred Scott decision. Let him consider not only what work the machinery is adapted to do, and how well adapted; but also let him study the history of its construction, and trace, if he can, or rather fail, if he can, to trace the evidence of design and concert of action among its chief architects, from the beginning.

Here the speaker reviewed the history of the Repeal of the Missouri Compromise and the Dred Scott Decision.

The reputed author of the Nebraska bill finds an early occasion to make a speech at this capital indorsing the Dred Scott decision, and vehemently denouncing all opposition to it. The new President, too, seizes an early occasion to indorse and strongly construe that decision, and to express his astonishment that any different view had ever been entertained!

At length a squabble springs up between the President and the author of the Nebraska bill, on the mere question of fact, whether the Lecompton constitution was or was not, in any just sense, made by the people of Kansas; and in that quarrel the latter declares that all he wants is a fair vote for the people, and that he cares not whether slavery be voted down or voted up. I do not understand his declaration that he cares not whether slavery be voted down or voted up to be intended by him other than as an apt definition of the policy he would impress upon the public mind-the principle for which he declares. he has suffered so much, and is ready to suffer to the end. And well may he cling to that principle. If he has any parental feeling, well may he cling to it. That principle is the only shred left of his original Nebraska doctrine. Under the Dred Scott decision "squatter sovereignty" squatted out of existence, tumbled down like temporary scaffolding-like the mold at the foundry, served through one blast and fell back into loose sand -helped to carry an election and then was kicked to the winds. His late joint struggle with the Republicans against the Lecompton constitution involves nothing of the original Nebraska doctrine. That struggle was made on a point-the right of a peopi?

to make their own constitution-upon which he and the Republicans have never differed.

The several points of the Dred Scott decision, in connection with Senator Douglas's "care not" policy, constitute the piece of machinery in its present state of advancement. This was the third point gained. The working points of that machinery are:

(1) That no negro slave, imported as such from Africa, and no descendant of such slave, can ever be a citizen of any State, in the sense of that term as used in the Constitution of the United States. This point is made in order to deprive the negro in every possible event of the benefit of that provision of the United States Constitution which declares that "the citizens of each State shall be entitled to all the privileges and immunities of citizens in the several States."

(2) That, "subject to the Constitution of the United States," neither Congress nor a territorial legislature can exclude slavery from any United States Territory. This point is made in order that individual men may fill up the Territories with slaves without danger of losing them as property, and thus enhance the chances of permanency to the institution through all the future.

(3) That whether the holding a negro in actual slavery in a free State makes him free as against the holder, the United States courts will not decide, but will leave to be decided by the courts of any slave State the negro may be forced into by the master. This point is made, not to be pressed immediately, but, if acquiesced in for a while, and apparently indorsed by the people at an election, then to sustain the logical conclusion that what Dred Scott's master might lawfully do with Dred Scott in the free State of Illinois every other master may lawfully do with any other one or one thousand slaves in Illinois or in any other free State.

Auxiliary to all this, and working hand in hand with it, the Nebraska doctrine, or what is left of it, is to educate and mold public opinion, at least Northern public opinion, not to care whether slavery is voted down or voted up. This shows exactly where we now are, and partially, also, whither we are tending.

It will throw additional light on the latter, to go back and run the mind over the string of historical facts already stated. Several things will now appear less dark and mysterious than they did when they were transpiring. The people were to be left"perfectly free," "subject only to the Constitution." What the Constitution had to do with it outsiders could not then see. Plainly enough now, it was an exactly fitted niche for the Dred Scott decision to afterward come in and declare the perfect free

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