Page images
[graphic][ocr errors][ocr errors][subsumed]
[ocr errors]



that the alternative of conceded Dis- Mr. James F Wilson, of Iowa. Mr. union or constrained Emancipation Wilson, of Mass., soon reported' his might yet be avoided. His first An- bill; of which he pressed the considnual Message* cautiously avoided the eration ten days afterward; but it subject; but proposed a systematic was resisted with great ingenuity and colonization in some territory to be earnestness by all the Opposition and acquired outside of the present limits by a few of the more conservative of our country-of those Blacks who Administration Senators. Other bills had already, or might thereafter, be having obtained precedence in the come free in consequence of the war. Senate, Mr. F. P. Blair reported to He coolly added :

the House from its Military Commit“It might be well to consider, too, tee, an additional Article of War, as whether the free colored people already in follows: the United States could not, so far as individuals may desire, be included in such colo

“ All officers are prohibited from employnization."

ing any of the forces under their respective

commands for the purpose of returning fuCongress acceded to this, so far as gitives from service or labor who may have to appropriate $100,000 in aid of the escaped from any persons to whom such sercolonization as aforesaid of the freed- vice or labor is claimed to be due. Any

officer who shall be found guilty by courtmen of the District of Columbia ; martial of violating this article shall be diswhich

sum, or most of it, was duly missed from the service.” squandered-to the satisfaction of cer- This bill was strenuously opposed tain speculators, and the intense, pro- by Messrs. Mallory and Wickliffe, tracted misery of a few deluded of Kentucky, as also by Mr. ValBlacks, who were taken to a wretch- landigham, of Ohio, while ably ed sand-spit, known as Cow Island, advocated by Mr. Bingham, of Ohio; on the coast of Hayti, and kept there and passed by a (substantially) party so long as they could be: and this was vote: Yeas 83; Nays 44. Having the practical finale of the Coloniza- been received by the Senate and retion project.

ferred to its Military Committee, it

was duly reported therefrom by Mr. The XXXVIIth Congress having H. Wilson; vehemently opposed by convened for its second (or first reg- Messrs. Garret Davis, of Ky., Carlile, ular) session, Gen. Wilson, of Mass., of Va., Saulsbury, of Del., and supgaveo notice in Senate of a bill to ported by Messrs. Wilson, of Mass., punish officers and privates of our Howard, of Michigan, Sherman, of armies for arresting, detaining, or de Ohio, McDougall, of Cal., and Anlivering persons claimed as fugitive thony, of R. I., and passed :10 Yeas slaves; and Mr. O. Lovejoy, of Ill., 29; Nays gma party vote, save that simultaneously introduced a bill of Mr. McDougall, of Cal., voted Yea. like tenor in the House. Mr. Wilson The bill thus enacted was approved submitted his bill on the 230; a re- by the President, March 13th, 1862. solve to the same effect having been Gen. Wilson, upon evidence that submitted by Mr. Sumner six days the above act was inadequate to rebefore; as one of like nature was strain the negro-catching propensities this day laid before the House by of some officers in the service, pro, * Dec. 3, 1861. • Dec. 2, 1861. Dec. 4. * Jan. 6, 1862. Feb. 25. March 4.

VOL. II.--17

• March 10.

posed " further action to the same bill; which provided for the Aboliend; and the Senate considered " his tion of Slavery in the District, and resolution of inquiry. Mr. Grimes, the payment to the masters from the of Iowa, in supporting it made a Treasury of an average compensation statement as follows:

of $300 each for the slaves thus “In the month of February last, an manumitted. The bill was so amended officer of the 3d regiment of Iowa infantry,

as to abolish also the Black Laws of stationed at a small town in Missouri, succeeded in capturing several Rebel bridge- said District. Mr. G. Davis, of Ky., burners, and some recruiting officers be- bitterly opposed the bill; proposing longing to Price's army. The information that led to their capture was furnished by so to amend it as to send out of the two or three remarkably shrewd and intelli- country all persons freed thereby; gent slaves, claimed by a Lt.-Colonel in the which was ardently supported by Rebel army. Shortly afterward, the master dispatched an agent, with instructions to Mr. Saulsbury, of Del. Mr. Doolittle seize the slaves, and convey them within (Repub.), of Wisc., favored colonizthe Rebel lines: whereupon, the Iowa officer seized them, and reported the circumstances ing the freedmen, but moved to add to headquarters. The slaves, soon under- “ with their own consent;" which standing the full import of Gen. Halleck's prevailed-Yeas 23; Nays 16—and celebrated Order No. 3, two of thein attempt- Mr. Davis's proposition, as thus ed an escape. This was regarded as an unpardonable sin. The Iowa otficer was imme- amended, was lost by a tie vote-19 diately placed under arrest; and a detachment of the Missouri State Militia-men in to 19; and the emancipating bill— the pay of this Government, and under the after having been ably supported by command of Gen. Halleck--were sent in pur- Messrs. Wilmot, of Pa., Ilale, of suit of the fugitives. The hunt was successful. The slaves were cauglit, and returned to N. H., Pomeroy, of Kansas (against their traitor master, but not until one of paying the masters), King, of N. Y., them had been shot by order of the soldier Wilson, of Mass., Harlan, of Iowa, in cominand of the pursuing party.”

Mr. Sumner followed in an able Wilkinson, of Minn., Sumner, of speech in advocacy ; but the subject Mass., Fessenden, of Maine, Brownwas overlaid by others deemed more

ing, of Ill., and Morrill, of Maine, urgent; and the bill was not conclu- and further opposed by Messrs. sively acted on.

Wright (Union), of Ind., Willey, of At an early period " of the session, West Va. (who wished the question Gen. Wilson had proposed a refer- of Emancipation submitted to a popence of all laws relating to persons of ular vote of the District), Kennedy, color in the District of Columbia, of Md., McDougall, of Cal., and and to the arrest of fugitives from Bayard, of Del.—was passed :" Yeas labor, to the Standing Committee on 29; Nays 14-as follows: said District, with instructions that YEAs — Messrs. Anthony, Browning, they consider the expediency of a Chandler, Clark, Collamer, Dixon, Doclitcompensated Abolition of Slavery Harlan, Harris, Howard, Howe, King, Lane,

tle, Fessenden, Foot, Foster, Grimes, Hale, therein; and he soon afterward in- of Ind., Lane, of Kansas, Morrill, Porneroy, troduced" a bill of like purport; Wade, Wilkinson, Wilmot, and Wilson, of

Sherman, Sumner, Ten Eyck, Trumbull, which was read twice and referred to the Committee aforesaid. Mr. Nays-Messrs. Bayard, Carlile, Davis, Morrill, of Maine, duly reported" Henderson, Kennedy, Latham, McDougall,

Nesmith, Powell, Saulsbury, Stark, Willey, from said Committee Gen. Wilson's Wilson, of Mo., and Wright-14.



13 April 3. 12 April 14.

18 Dec. 14.

14 Dec. 16.

16 Dec. 22.

16 Feb. 13.

17 April 3.

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

This bill having reached the against Slavery as the main cause of
House, Mr. Stevens, of Pa., in Com- our subsisting troubles in a Special
mittee of the Whole, moved" the Message, which proposed that the
laying aside successively of each bill Houses of Congress should unite in
preceding it on the calendar, and adopting this joint resolution :
thus reached this one

which was

Resolved, That the United States, in ortaken up and debated by Judge adopt gradual abolition of Slavery, give to

der to cooperate with any State which may Thomas, of Mass., and Mr. Crittenden, such state pecuniary aid, to be used by snch of Ky., in opposition. Mr. Stevens State, in its discretion, to compensate it for tried to close the debate next day, duced by such change of system.”

the inconvenience, public and private, probut failed; and the bill was advoca- This proposition he commended in ted by Messrs. F. P. Blair, of Mo., these guarded and deferential terms: Bingham, Blake, Riddle, Ashley, and “ If the proposition contained in the resoHutchins, of Ohio, Rollins, of N. H., lution does not meet the approval of Conand Van Horn, of N. Y.' Mr. Stefness and the country, there is an end of it.

But, if it does cominand such approval, I vens at length induced the Commit- deem it of importance that the States and tee to rise and report the bill; when people immediately interested should be at

once distinctly notified of the fact, so that the measure was further opposed by they may begin to consider whether to Messrs. H. B. Wright, of Pa., Wads- accept or reject it.

The Federal Government would find worth, Harding, Menzies, and Wick- its highest interest in such a measure, as liffe, of Ky., and supported by Messrs. one of the most important means of selfHickman, of Pa., Train, of Mass., preservation. The leaders of the existing Lovejoy, of Ill., Dunn, of Ind., Cox ernment will ultimately be forced to acand Vallandigham, of Ohio; and knowledge the independence of some part

of the disaffected region, and that all the passed under the Previous Question: Slave States north of such part will then Yeas 92; Nays 39. [Messrs. G. H. say, "The Union for which we have strugBrowne, of R. I., English, of Conn., gleil being already gone, we now choose to

go with the Southern section. To deprivo Haight and Odell, of N. Y., Sheffield, them of this hope substantially ends the of R. I., and B. F. Thomas, of Mass., tien deprives them of it, and of all the States voted Yea with the Republicans; tion deprives them of it, and of all the States while Messrs. J. B. Blair and Wm. “The point is not that all the States tolG. Brown, of Va., James S. Rollins, initiate Emancipation ; but, while the offer

erating Slavery would very soon, if at all, of Mo., and Francis Thomas, of Md., is equally made to all, the more Northern voted Nay with the Democrats and shall, by such initiation, make it certain to Kentuckians.] The bill, thus passed former ever join the latter in their proposed

the more Southern that in no event will the
on the 11th, was signed by the Presi- Confederacy: *
dent on the 16th of April, 1862."

the adoption of the proposed resolution
would be merely initiatory, and not within

itself a practical measure, it is recoinrended President Lincoln made his first in the hope that it would soon lead to im

portant practical results. In full view of overt, yet cautious, demonstration my great responsibility to my God and to April 10.

part of Blacks; but U. S. Treasurer Spinner 19 Some of the anomalies of the slaveholding was waited on by a District negro (free), who system were brought to light in the execution had bought and paid for his (slave) wife, and of this measure. For instance: while it had who required payment not only for her but for long been usual for White men to sell their their half-dozen children-all his legal and salaparti-colored children, there were no known ble chattels and the claim could not be disalprecedents for a like thrifty procedure on the lowed.

30 March 6, 1862.

* * While it is true that


[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »