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or causing to be seized any free person with der a certain act of Congress passed on the intent to reduce him to slavery ; depositions 12th day of February, 1793.” During the not to be admitted as evidence; witnesses last session of her Legislature the Commistestifying falsely, liable to $5,000 fine and five sioners appointed to revise and amend the years imprisonment.

Penal Laws of Pennsylvania (John C. Knox,

Edward King, and David Webster) made a RHODE ISLAND.

report to the Legislature that they had comThis State by her legislation forbids the pleted their labors, and the result was precarrying away of any person by force out of sented in the shape of a bill entitled An the State ; forbids any judge, justice, magis- act to consolidate, revise and amend the trate, or court from officially aiding in the Penal Laws of this Commonwealth.” That arrest of a fugitive slave under the fugitive report, on the thirty-first day of March, slave law of 1793 or 1850; forbids any sheriff 1860, was enacted into a law, and by the or other officer from arresting or detaining ninety-fifth section it is enacted as follows: and person claimed as a fugitive slave; pro- * No Judge of any of the Courts of this vides a penalty of $500, or imprisonment Commonwealth, nor any Alderman or Jusnot exceeding six months, for violating the tice of the Peace of said Commonwealth, act; denies the use of her jails to the United shall have jurisdiction or take cognizance of States for the detention of fugitive slaves. the case of any fugitive from labor from any

of the United States or Territories under any NEW YORK.

act of Congress, nor shall any such Judge, The State of New York has passed no Alderman, or Justice of the Peace of this laws having relation to the United States Commonwealth issue or grant any certificate fugitive slave act of 1850. Though pressed or warrant of removal of any such fugitive frequently upon the Legislature, they have from labor, under any act of Congress; and always failed of adoption. The old and ob- if any Alderman or Justice of the Peace of solete act of 1840, entitled “ An act to extend this Commonwealth shall take cognizance or the right of trial by jury," extends the trial jurisdiction of the case of any such fugitive, by jury to the cases of persons arrested as or shall grant or issue any certificate or fugitive slaves; but in the fourth edition of warrant of removal, as aforesaid, then, and the laws of the State, as prepared and pub- in either case, he shall be deemed guilty of lished by Hon. Hiram Denio, at present a misdemeanor in office, and shall, on conChief Justice of the Court of Appeals, may viction thereof, be sentenced to pay, at the be found appended to the chapter containing discretion of the Court, any sum not exthis law the following note:

ceeding one thousand dollars, the one-half to "An Act to Exctend the Right of Trial by the party prosecuting for the same, and the Jury, passed May 6th, 1840.-—'The decision other half to the use of this Commonwealth." of the Supreme Court of the United States, The theory of this law, it will be seen, is in Prigg vs. the Commonwealth of Penn-founded strictly on the decision of the Susylvania, 16 Peters' R. 539, establishes the preme Court of the United States in the doctrine that all State laws calculated to Prigg case, and does not interfere with the interfere with the third subdivision of sec- functions of the Commissioner appointed tion 2, article 4, of the Constitution of the under the United States law. United States are unconstitutional. Since that decision the fugitive slave law (Laws of

MICHIGAN* Congress, 1850, chap. 60) has been passed,

The law of this State requires State's containing provisions repugnant to the whole of this act. It is therefore of. no slaves ; secures to persons arrested as fugi.

attorneys to act as counsel for fugitive force; but, as it never has been repealed, it is tive slaves the benefits of the writ of habeas mere inserted."

corpus, and trial by jury; denies use of NEW JERSEY.

State jails for detention of alleged fugitives; The State of New Jersey has no statutes requires that identity of fugitive slaves bearing on this subject save those which shall be proved by two credible witnesses, or enjoin upon her State officers the duty of aid- by legal evidence equivalent thereto, and ing in the recovery of fugitive slaves. Per provides a fine of not less than five hundred sons temporarily residing in the State are

nor more than one thousand dollars, and also permitted to bring with them and re- imprisonment in State prison for five .years, tain their domestic slaves.

for forcibly seizing, or causing to be seized,

any free person, with intent to have such PENNSYLVANIA.

person held in slavery. The State of Pennsylvania has not formally and specially legislated at all against

IOWA. the United States fugitive slave law of 1850, This State has no legislation on the subthough there was an old statute of 1847 ject. which prohibited any judge, justice of the peace, or alderman from taking cognizance

* March, 1861. A bill to repeal this was indefinitely of the case of any fugitive from labor, “un- | postponed in the House by a vote of 43 to 24


The law of this State enjoins on the district attorneys the duty of acting as counsel for a.ieged fugitive slaves; secures to such persons the benefits of the writ of habeas corpus; provides for appeal to be taken to next stated term of the Circuit Court; secures trial by jury; enjoins a penalty of one thousand dollars and imprisonment of not more than five nor less than one year on all who "falsely and maliciously represent any free person to be a slave"; identity of alleged fugitive slave to be proved by two credible witnesses; no deposition to be received in evidence. It is also provided that

"No judgment recovered against any person or persons for any neglect or refusal to obey, or any violations of, the act of Congress commonly termed the Fugitive Slave Act,' approved September eighteenth, one thousand eight hundred and fifty, or any of the provisions thereof, shall be a lien on any real estate within this State, nor shall any such judgment be enforcable by sale or execution of any real or personal property within this State; but all such sales shall be absolutely void; and in case of seizure or sale of any personal property, by virtue of any execution issued on such judgment, the defendant in said execution may maintain an action in replevin, or other action to secure possession thereof, in the manner provided by law for such actions, on affidavit filed as required by law, and a further statement therein that said execution issued in a judgment rendered under the provisions of the act of Congress aforesaid; and the provisions of this section shall also apply to judgments heretofore rendered."

OHIO, INDIANA, ILLINOIS. MINNESOTA, CALIFORNIA AND OREGON. We cannot find that these States have any laws in force on the subject.


In VERMONT Legislature, Nov., 1860, a majority of the Committee of House of Representatives reported in favor of the repeal of the above law, but their proposition was rejected by a vote of two to one.

In MAINE, a repealing bill passed the Senate-yeas 17, yeas 10, and failed in the House.

In MASSACHUSETTS, a modifying bill was passed. For detail, see under “Massachusetts.” In RHODE ISLAND, a repealing bill passed the Senate-yeas 21, nays 9; the Houseyeas 49, nays 18.

In MICHIGAN, a repealing bill was indefi nitely postponed in the House-yeas 43, nays 24.

In PENNSYLVANIA, a repealing bill was introduced into the House, but was not reached, in the course of business, when the firing on A majority of Sumter opened the war. each House was understood to be in favor of it. This law was first passed in 1847, after the Prigg decision; and one section prohibiting the use of State jails was repealed in 1852.


U. S. Senator Simmons of Rhode Island, in one of his speeches, made these remarks: Complaint had been made of personal liberty bills. Now, the Massachusetts personal liberty bill was passed by a Democratic House, a Democratic Senate, and signed by a Democratic Governor, a man who was afterwards nominated by Mr. Polk for the very best office in New England, and was unanimously confirmed by a Democratic United States Senate. Further than this, the very first time the attention of the Massachusetts Legislature was called to the propriety of a repeal to this law was by a Republican Governor, Governor Banks. Now, on the other hand, South Carolina had repealed a law imprisoning British colored sailors, but retained the one imprisoning those coming from States inhabited by her own brethren."



Meeting and Proceedings of Congress.


Congress met on the first Monday of December, 1860, and was composed of the following persons :—


MINNESOTA-H. M. Rice, M. S. Wilkinson. OREGON Joseph Lane, Edward D. Baker. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES. WILLIAM PENNINGTON of New Jersey, Speaker.

MAINE-D. E. Somes, John J. Perry, E.

JOHN C. BRECKINRIDGE of Kentucky, Vice B. French, F. H. Morse, Israel Washburn,


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RHODE ISLAND-James F. Simmons, H. B. Anthony.

CONNECTICUT-L. S. Foster, Jas. Dixon.
NEW YORK-Wm.H.Seward, Preston King.
NEW JERSEY-J. C. Ten Eyck, J. R.

PENNSYLVANIA S. Cameron, Wm. Bigler.
DELAWARE-J. A. Bayard, W. Saulsbury.
MARYLAND J. A. Pearce, A. Kennedy.
VIRGINIA—R. M. T. Hunter, James M.


SOUTH CAROLINA-James Chesnut,† Jas. H. Hammond.†

NORTH CAROLINA-Thomas Bragg, T. L.

ALABAMA-B. Fitzpatrick, C. C. Clay, Jr.
MISSISSIPPI-A. G. Brown, Jeff. Davis.
LOUISIANA-J. P. Benjamin, John Slidell.
TENNESSEE-A. O. P. Nicholson, A. John-


ARKANSAS-R. W. Johnson, W. K. Sebas


KENTUCKY-L. W. Powell, J. J. Critten



Jr., S. C. Foster.

NEW HAMPSHIRE-Gilman Marston, M. W. Tappan, T. M. Edwards.

VERMONT-E. P. Walton, J. S. Morrill, H. E. Royce.

MASSACHUSETTS-Thos. D. Eliot, James Buffinton, Charles Francis Adams, Alexander H. Rice, Anson Burlingame, John B.

Alley, Daniel W. Gooch, Charles R. Train,
Eli Thayer, Charles Delano, Henry L.

RHODE ISLAND-C. Robinson, W. D. Bray


Woodruff, Alfred A.Burnham, Orris S. Ferry.
CONNECTICUT-Dwight Loomis, John
DELAWARE-W. G. Whiteley.

NEW YORK-Luther C. Carter, James
Humphrey, Daniel E. Sickles, W. B. Ma-
clay, Thos. J. Barr, John Cochrane, George
Briggs, Horace F. Clark, John B. Haskin,
L. Beale, Abm. B. Olin, John H. Reynolds,
Chas. H. Van Wyck, Wm. S. Kenyon, Chas.
Jas. B. McKean, G. W. Palmer, Francis E.
Spinner, Clark B. Cochrane, James H. Gra-
ham, Richard Franchot, Roscoe Conkling,
R. H. Duell, M. Lindley Lee, Chas. B. Hoard,
Chas. B. Sedgwick, M. Butterfield, Emory
B. Pottle, Alfred Wells, Wm. Irvine, Alfred
Ely, Augustus Frank, Edwin R. Reynolds,
Elbridge G. Spaulding, Reuben E. Fenton.

NEW JERSEY John T. Nixon, John L. N.
Stratton, Garnett B. Adrain, Jetur R. Riggs,
Wm. Pennington (Speaker.)

MISSOURI-Jas. S. Green, Trusten Polk.
ОнIO-B. F. Wade, Geo. E. Pugh.
INDIANA-J. D. Bright, G. N. Fitch.
ILLINOIS-S. A. Douglas, L. Trumbull.
MICHIGAN-Z. Chandler, K. S. Bingham.
FLORIDA-D. L. Yulee, S. R. Mallory.
GEORGIA-Alfred Iverson, Robt. Toombs.
TEXAS-John Hemphill, L. T. Wigfall.
WISCONSIN-Charles Durkee, J. R. Doolit-mick, Galusha A. Grow, James T. Hale, Ben-

PENNSYLVANIA-Thos. B. Florence, E. Joy Morris, John P. Verree, Wm. Millward, John necker, Jacob K. McKenty, Thaddeus Wood, John Hickman, Henry C. Longbell, George W. Scranton, William H. DimStevens, John W. Killinger, James H. Camp

IOWA-J. W. Grimes, Jas. Harlan.

jamin F.Junkin, Edward McPherson, Samuel S. Blair, John Covode, William Montgomery, James K. Moorhead, Robert McKnight,

CALIFORNIA-M. S. Latham, William M. William Stewart, Chapin Hall, Elijah Bab


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Resigned and succeeded January 24, 1861, by Hon. Stephen Coburn.


MARYLAND-Jas. A. Stewart, J. M. Harris, H. W. Davis, J. M. Kunkel, G. W. Hughes.

VIRGINIA-John S. Millson, Muscoe R. H. Garnett, Daniel C. De Jarnette, Roger A. Pryor, Thomas S. Bocock, William Smith, Alex. R. Boteler, John T. Harris, Albert G. Jenkins, Shelton F. Leake, Henry A. Edmundson, Elbert S. Martin, Sherrard Clemens.

SOUTH CAROLINA-John McQueen, Wm. Porcher Miles, Lawrence M. Keitt, Milledge L. Bonham, John D. Ashmore, Wm. W. Bovce.

NORTH CAROLINA-W. N. H. Smith, Thos. Ruffin, W. Winslow, L. O'B. Branch, John A. Gilmer, Jas. M. Leach, Burton Craige, Z. B. Vance.

GEORGIA-Peter E. Love, M. J. Crawford, Thos. Hardeman, Jr., L. J. Gartrell, J. W. H. Underwood, James Jackson, Joshua Hill,

John J. Jones.

ALABAMA-Jas. L. Pugh, David Clopton, Sydenh. Moore, Geo. S. Houston, W. R. W. Cobb, J. A. Stallworth, J. L. M. Curry.

MISSISSIPPI-L. Q. C. Lamar, Reuben Davis, William Barksdale, O. R. Singleton, John J. McRae.

LOUISIANA-John E. Bouligny, Miles Taylor. T. G. Davidson, John M. Landrum.

OHIO-G. H. Pendleton, John A. Gurley, C. L. Vallandigham, William Allen, James M. Ashley, Wm. Howard, Thomas Corwin, Benj. Stanton, John Carey, C. A. Trimble, Chas. D. Martin, Saml. S. Cox, John Sherman, H. G. Blake, William Helmick, C. B. Tompkins, T. C. Theaker, S. Edgerton, Edward Wade, John Hutchins, John A. Bingham.

KENTUCKY-Henry C. Burnett, Green Adams, S. O. Peyton, F. M. Bristow, W. C. Anderson, Robert Mallory, Wm. E. Simms, L. T. Moore, John Y. Brown, J. W. Steven


TENNESSEE-T. A. R. Nelson, Horace Maynard, R. B. Brabson, William B. Stokes, Robert Hatton, James H. Thomas, John V. Wright, James M. Quarles, Emerson Etheridge, Wm. T. Avery.

INDIANA-Wm. E. Niblack, Wm. H. English, Wm. M'Kee Dunn, Wm. S. Holman, David Kilgore, Albert G. Porter, John G. Davis, James Wilson, Schuyler Colfax, Chas. Case, John U. Pettit.

ILLINOIS-E. B. Washburne, J. F. Farnsworth, Owen Lovejoy, Wm. Kellogg, I. N. Morris, John A. McClernand, James C. Robinson, P. B. Fouke, John A. Logan. ARKANSAS-Thomas C. Hindman, Albert


MISSOURI J. R. Barrett, T. L. Anderson, John B. Clark, James Craig, S. H. Woodson, John S. Phelps, John W. Noell. MICHIGAN-William A. Howard, Henry Waldron, F. W. Kellogg, De W. C. Leach. FLORIDA-George S. Hawkins. TEXAS-John H. Reagan, A. J. Hamilton. Iowa-S. R. Curtis, Wm. Vandever.

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President Buchanan's Last Annual Message.

It was delivered on Tuesday, December 4th, 1860.

Mr. Buchanan alluded to the distracted condition of the country, and appealed to the American people. He declared that the election of any one of our fellow-citizens to the office of President does not, of itself, afford just cause for dissolving the Union; and that, to justify a revolutionary resistance the Federal Government must be guilty of "a deliberate, palpable, and dangerous exercise" of powers not granted by the Constitution which, he alleged, and pro ceeded to prove, was not at all the case. He denied that "secession" could be justified as a Constitutional remedy, and asserted that the "principle is wholly inconsistent with the history, as well as the char acter, of the Federal Constitution;" and claimed that such a proposition was not advanced until many years after the origin of the Federal Government, and that then it was met and refuted by the conclusive arguments of General Jackson. He held that this Government is invested with all the attributes of sovereignty over the special subjects to which its authority extends, and then discussed, in the following language, what he denominated


The question, fairly stated, is: Has the Constitution delegated to Congress the power to coerce a State into submission which is attempting to withdraw or has actually withdrawn from the Confederacy? If answered in the affirmative, it must be on the principle that the power has been conferred upon Congress to declare and to make war against a State. After much serious reflection I have arrived at the conclusion that no such power has been delegated to Congress nor to any other department of the Federal Government. It is manifest, upon an inspection of the Constitution, that this is not among the specific and enumerated powers granted to Congress; and it is equally apparent that its exercise is not "necessary and proper for carrying into execution" any one of these powers. So far from this power having been delegated to Congress, it was expressly refused by the Convention which framed the Constitution. It appears, from the proceedings of that body, that on the 31st May, 1787, the clause "authorizing an exertion of the force of

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the whole against a delinqucnt State" came , Virginia Legislature against the "alien and up for consideration. Mr. Madison opposed sedition acts," as “palpable and alarming init in a brief but powerful speech, from which fractions of the Constitution.” In pointing I shall extract but a single sentence. He out the peaceful and constitutional remedies, observed: * The use of force against a State and he referred to none other to which the would look more like declaration of war States were authorized to resort on such than an infliction of punishment, and would occasions, he concludes by saying, “that the probably be considered by the party attacked Legislatures of the States might have made as a dissolution of all previous compacts by a direct representation to Congress with a which it might be bound.” Upon his mo- view to obtain a rescinding of the two offend tion the clause was unanimously postponed, ing acts, or they might have represented to and was never, I believe, again presented. | their respective Senators in Congress their Soon afterwards, on the 8th June, 1787, wish that two-thirds thereof would propose when incidentally adverting to the subject, an explanatory amendment to the Constitu he said: “Any Government for the United tion, or two-thirds of themselves, if such hud States, formed on the supposed practicability been their option, might, by an application of using force against the unconstitutional to Congress, have obtained a Convention proceedings of the States, would prove as for the same object.” visionary and fallacious as the government This is the very course which I earnestly of Congress,” evidently meaning the then recommend in order to obtain an “explanaexisting Congress of the old Confedera- tory amendment” of the Constitution on the tion.

subject of slavery. This might originate with Without descending to particulars, it may Congress or the State Legislatures, as may be be safely asserted that the power to make deemed most advisable to attain the object. war against a State is at variance with the The explanatory amendment might be whole spirit and intent of the Constitution. confined to the final settlement of the true Suppose such a war should result in the construction of the Constitution on three conquest of a State, how are we to govern it special points : afterwards ? Shall we hold it as a province 1. An express recognition of the right of and govern it by despotic power ? In the property in slaves in the States where it now nature of things we could not, by physical exists or may hereafter exist. force, control the will of the people, and 2. The duty of protecting this right in all compel them to elect Senators and Repre- the common Territories throughout their sentatives to Congress, and to perform all territorial existence, and until they shall be the other duties depending upon their own admitted as States into the Union, with or volition, and required from the free citizens without slavery, as their constitutions may of a free State as a constituent member of prescribe. the Confederacy.

3. A like recognition of the right of the But, if we possessed this power, would it master to have his slave, who has escaped be wise to exercise it under existing circum- from one State to another, restored and “destances ? The object would doubtless be to livered up” to him, and of the validity of the preserve the Union. War would not only fugitive-slave law enacted for this purpose, present the most effectual means of destroy- together with a declaration that all State ing it, but would banish all hope of its laws impairing or defeating this right are peaceable reconstruction. Besides, in the violations of the Constitution, and are confraternal conflict a vast amount of blood and sequently null and void. treasure would be expended, rendering future It may be objected that this construction reconciliation between the States impossible. of the Constitution has already been settled In the meantime who can foretell what by the Supreme Court of the United States, would be the sufferings and privations of the and what more ought to be required? The people during its existence ?

answer is, that a very large proportion of the The fact is, that our Union rests upon people of the United States still contest the public opinion, and can never be cemented correctness of this decision, and never will by the blood of its citizens shed in civil cease from agitation and admit its binding

If it cannot live in the affections of force until established by the people of the the people, it must one day perish. Con- several States in their sovereign character. gress possesses many means of preserving Such an explanatory amendment would, it is it by conciliation; but the sword was not believed, forever terminate the existing displaced in their hand to preserve it by force. sensions and restore peace and harmony

In this connexion, I shall merely call at- among the States. tention to a few sentences in Mr. Madison's It ought not to be doubted that such an justly celebrated report, in 1799, to the appeal to the arbitrament established by the Legislature of Virginia. In this he ably and Constitution itself would be received with conclusively defended the resolutions of the favor by all the States of the Confederacy. preceding Legislature against the strictures In any event, it ought to be tried in a spirit of several other State Legislatures. These of conciliation before any of these States were mainly founded upon the protest of the I shall separate themselves from the Union.


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