Page images

lature, or of any individuals, to give legal existence to Slavery in any Territory of the United States.

9. That we brand the recent re-opening of the African slave-trade, under the cover of our national flag, aided by perversions of judicial power, as a crime against humanity and a burning shame to our country and age; and we call upon Congress to take prompt and efficient measures for the total and final suppression of that execrable traffic.

12. That, while providing revenue for the support of the General Government by duties upon imports, sound policy requires such an adjustment of these imposts as to encourage the development of the industrial interests of the whole country and we commend that policy of national exchanges which secures to the working men liberal wages, to agriculture remunerating prices, to mechanics and manufacturers an adequate reward for their skill, labor, and enterprise, and to the nation commercial prosperity and independence.

18. That we protest against any sale or alienation to others of the Public Lands held by actual settlers, and against any view of the Homestead policy which regards the settlers as paupers or suppliants for public bounty; and we demand the passage by Congress of the complete and satisfactory Homestead measure which has already passed the House.

14. That the Republican Party is opposed to any change in our Naturalization Laws or any State legislation by which the rights of citizenship hitherto accorded to immigrants from foreign lands shall be abridged or impaired ; and in favor of giving a full and efficient protection to the rights of all classes of citizens, whether native or naturalized, both at home and abroad.

10. That in the recent vetoes, by their Federal Governors, of the acts of the Legislatures of Kansas and Neoraska, prohibiting Slavery in those Territories, we find a practical illustration of the boasted Democratic principle of Non Intervention and Popular Sovereignty embo-New-Jersey: died in the Kansas-Nebraska bill, and a demonstration of the deception and fraud involved therein.

11. That Kansas should, of right, be immediately admitted as a State under the Constitution recently formed and adopted by her people, and accepted by the House of Representatives.

On the following day, Friday, May 18th, the Chair having announced that the naming of candidates for President was in order, Wm. M. Evarts, of New-York, named William H. Seward.

Mr. Judd, of Illinois, named Abraham Lincoln. Mr. Dudley, of New-Jersey, nominated Wm. L. Dayton. Gov. Reeder, of Pennsylvavania, nominated Simon Cameron. Mr. Cartter, of Ohio, nominated Salmon P. Chase. Francis P. Blair, of Maryland, nominated Edward Bates, of Missouri.

Indiana seconded the nomination of Abraham Lincoln. Mr. Austin Blair, of Michigan, seconded the nomination of Mr. Seward; so also did Carl Schurz, of Wisconsin, Mr. Worth, of Minnesota, and Mr. Wilder, of Kansas.


Mr. Corwin, of Ohio, nominated Judge McLean.

Mr. Delano, of Ohio, seconded the nomination of Mr. Lincoln, as did also one of the delegates from Iowa.

The balloting then proceeded, with the following result:



New-Hampshire 1

Massachusetts..21 4
Rhode Island...
New-York... .70



Pennsylvania.. 1 4
Maryland.... 3



15. That appropriations by Congress for River and Harbor improvements of a National character, required for the accommodation and security of an existing commerce, are authorized by the Constitution, and justified by the obligations of Government to protect the lives and property of its citizens.

16. That a Railroad to the Pacific Ocean is imperatively
demanded by the interests of the whole country; that
the Federal Government ought to render immediate and
efficient aid in its construction; and that, as preliminary
thereto, a daily Overland Mail should be promptly New-Jersey.

Rhode Island..


17. Finally, having thus set forth our distinctive principles and views, we invite the coöperation of all citizens, however differing on other questions, who substantially agree with us in their affirmance and support.


California... 8


Dis, of Columbia 2















8 14

5 6 2




[ocr errors]

2 2



2 1

Total.... 173102 3 50 48 12 1 49 14 1 1 10 Whole number of votes, 465. Necessary to a choice, 233.

The second ballot was then taken.
Mr. Cameron's name was withdrawn.


|| Wade.


District of Columbia..

| Cameron.








[ocr errors]


6 3




8 14






* Previously withdrawn.

| McLean.

|| Dayton.
|| C. M. Clay'

3 29


Total...... .184 181 35 2 8 42 10 2 The third ballot was taken amid excitement, and cries for "the ballot." Intense feeling existed during the voting, each vote being awaited in breathless silence and expectancy.

The progress of the ballot was watched with most intense interest, especially toward the last, the crowd becoming silent as the contest narrowed down. The States, as called, voted as follows:

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

Mr. Andrew, of Massachusetts, changed the vote of that State, giving 18 to Mr. Lincoln and 8 to Mr. Seward.

On motion of Mr. Evarts, of New-York, the Convention now took a recess till 5 o'clock, to afford time for consultation as to Vice-President.

At 5 o'clock the Convention reassembled, listened to nominations, and then proceeded to ballot.

The following is a record of the ballotings for Vice-President:


[NOTE.-Col.Fremont had sent a letter by one of the delegates from California, withdrawing his name from the list of candidates for President. This letter was published before the meeting of the Convention.]

[blocks in formation]

Mr. B. Gratz Brown, of Missouri, desired to change the 18 votes of Missouri to the gallant son of the West, Abraham Lincoln. Iowa, Connecticut, Kentucky, and Minnesota also changed their votes. The result of the third ballot was



Whole number of votes cast
Necessary to a choice..... ..234
Abraham Lincoln had received 354, and was Nebraska..
declared duly nominated.


On motion of Wm. M. Evarts, of New-York, seconded by Mr. Andrew, of Massachusetts, the nomination was then made unanimous.



Rhode Island









C. M. Clay.



HOTEL | Hickman.




Dist. of Columbia.. 2












- Hamlin,

| Read.








11 35


Total.... .101 88 51 58 194 1
Total 461. Necessary to a choice, 232.


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




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

District of Columbia..



367 86 Massachusetts withdrew the name of Mr. Banks, and cast 26 votes for Mr. Hamlin.

Pennsylvania withdrew the name of Gov. Reeder, and cast 54 votes for Mr. Hamlin.

On motion of Mr. Blakey, of Kentucky, the nomination was made unanimous.

Mr. J. R. Giddings, of Ohio, offered and the Convention adopted the following:

Resolved, That we deeply sympathize with those men who have been driven, some from their native States and others from the States of their adoption, and are now

exiled from their homes on account of their opinions; and we hold the Democratic party responsible for the gross violations of that clause of the Constitution which declares that citizens of each State shall be entitled to

all the privileges and immunities of citizens of the several States.

Mr. Ashmun made a brief speech, and the Convention adjourned sine die, with nine hearty

cheers for the ticket.


The Convention previous to its adjournment made choice of the following gentlemen as the National Committee for the next four years:

Maine-CHARLES J. GILMAN, Brunswick.
New-Hampshire-GEORGE G. FOGG, Concord.
Vermont-LAWRENCE BRAINARD, St. Albans.
Massachusetts-JOHN Z. GOODRICH, Stockbridge.
Rhode Island-THOMAS G. TURNER, Providence.
Connecticut-GIDEON WELLES, Hartford.
New-York-EDWIN D. MORGAN, Albany.
New-Jersey-DENNING DUER, N. Y. City.
Pennsylvania-EDWARD MCPHERSON, Gettysburg
Maryland-JAMES F. WAGNER, Baltimore.
Virginia-ALFRED CALDWELL, Wheeling.
Ohio-THOMAS SPOONER, Reading, Hamilton Co.
Indiana-SOLOMON MEREDITH, Centerville.
Illinois-NORMAN B. JUDD, Chicago.
Michigan-AUSTIN BLAIR, Jackson.
Wisconsin-CARL SCHURZ, Milwaukee.
Iowa-ANDREW J. STEVENS, Des Moines.
Minnesota-JOHN MCKUSICK, Stillwater.
Missouri-ASA S. JONES, St. Louis.
Kentucky-CASSIUS M. CLAY, Whitehall.
California-D. W. CHEESMAN, Oroville.
Oregon-W. FRANK JOHNSON, Oregon City.
Kansas-WILLIAM A. PHILLIPS, Lawrence.
Nebraska-0. H. IRISH, Nebraska City.
Dist. of Columbia, JOSEPH GERHARDT, Washington.
At a meeting held in Chicago, May 18th,
1860, the Committee organized by choosing the
Hon. E. D. Morgan, of New-York, Chairman,
and George G. Fogg, of New-Hampshire, Secre-
tary. Subsequently, the following persons were
constituted the Executive Committee:


A Democratic National Convention assembled at Charleston, S. C., on the 23d of April, 1860, with full delegations present from every State in the Union, and double delegations from Illinois and New-York. One of the New-York delegations was elected by the State Nominating Convention which met at Syracuse the preceding autumn; while its rival was elected by districts, and led by Fernando Wood, Mayor of the commercial emporium. From Illinois, one of the delegations was favorable to Senator Douglas, and the other opposed to that gentleman. Tickets of admission were given by the National Committee to the former or "Soft" Delegation from New York, thus deciding, so far as their power extended, against the Wood or "Hard" contestants, who were understood to be opposed to the nomination of Douglas.

Francis B. Flournoy, of Arkansas, was chosen temporary chairman, and the Convention opened with an angry and stormy debate on the question of the disputed seats. Mr. Fisher, of Va., presented a protest from Mayor Wood, on behalf of his delegation, against their CONVENTION-exclusion from the Hall. The reading of the protest was ruled out of order, and, after a wrangling debate, committees were appointed on Permanent Organization and Credentials, and the communication of Mayor Wood was referred without reading to the latter.

A Convention of Delegates, coming from twenty States, and claiming to represent the "Constitutional Union Party," met at Baltimore on the 9th of May, and nominated for President On the following day, the Committee on John Bell, of Tennessee, and for Vice-President Organization reported the name of Caleb CushEdward Everett, of Massachusetts. The ballot-ing, of Mass., for President, with one Viceings for President resulted as follows:

President and one Secretary from each State, which report was adopted. They also reported a rule "that in any State in which it has not "been provided or directed by its State Con81 vention how its vote may be given, the "Convention will recognize the right of each delegate to cast his individual vote." Which was also adopted.



E. D. MORGAN, of New-York.
GIDEON WELLES, of Connecticut.

N. B. JUDD, of Illinois.

CARL SCHURZ, of Wisconsin.
JOHN Z. GOODRICH, of Massachusetts.
DENNING DUER, of New-Jersey.
GEO. G. FOGG, of New-Hampshire.


Resolved, That it is both the part of patriotism and of duty to recognize no political principle other than

THE CONSTITUTION OF THE COUNTRY, THE UNION OF THE STATES AND THE ENFORCEMENT OF THE LAWS, and that, as representatives of the Constitutional Union men of the country in National Convention assembled, we hereby pledge ourselves to maintain, protect and defend, separately and unitedly, these great principles of public liberty and national safety, against all enemies at home and abroad, believing that thereby peace may once more be restored to the country, the rights of the People and of the States reëstablished, and the Government again placed in that condition, of justice, fraternity and equality, which, under the example and Constitution of our fathers, has solemly bound every citizen of the United States to maintain a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquillity, provide for the common defense, promote. the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.


1st. 2d. 1st. 2d. John Bell, 68 138 Edward Everett,.. 25 91 Sam. Houston,. 57 69 Wm. L. Goggin,... 3 John M. Botts,.... 9 Wm. A. Graham,.. 22 John McLean,.. 21 Wm. L. Sharkey,.. 7 J. J. Crittenden, . 28 1 Wm. C. Rives, 13 Necessary to a choice, 1st ballot, 128; second" ballot, 127.


The nomination of Mr. Bell was thereupon made unanimous.

Mr. Everett was unanimously nominated for Vice-President.

The Convention adopted the following as their


Whereas, Experience has demonstrated that Platforms adopted by the partisan Conventions of the country have had the effect to mislead and deceive the people, and at the same time to widen the political

divisions of the country, by the creation and encouragement of geographical and sectional parties; therefore,

A Committee on Resolutions and Platform was now appointed; and it was voted that no ballot for President and Vice-President should be taken till after the adoption of a Platform. Adjourned.

On the following day, the only progress made by the Convention was the settlement of the question of contested seats, by confirming the sitting delegates; that is, the "Softs" from New-York, and the Douglas men from Illinois. On the 26th, no progress was made, though there was much angry debate and many threats

of bolting on the part of delegates from the [ment to protect the rights of persons or proCotton States, unless their views in regard to perty on the high seas, in the Territories, or Platform should be adopted. wherever else its constitutional authority extends.

On the 27th, the Platform Committee, failing to agree, presented an assortment of Platforms, from which the Convention was expected to make its selection. The majority report, presented by Mr. Avery, of N. C., was as follows:

Resolved, That the Platform adopted at Cincinnati be affirmed, with the following resolution:

That the National Democracy of the United States hold these cardinal principles on the subject of Slavery in the Territories: First, that Congress has no power to abolish Slavery in the Territories; second, that the Territorial Legislature has no power to abolish Slavery in the Territories, nor to prohibit the introduction of slaves therein, nor any power to destroy or impair the right of property in slaves by any legislation whatever.

Resolved, That the enactments of State Legislatures to defeat the faithful execution of the Fugitive Slave Law are hostile in character, subversive of the Constitution, and revolutionary in their effects.

Resolved, That it is the duty of the Federal Government to protect the rights of person and property on the high seas, in the Territories, or wherever else its jurisdiction extends.

Resolved, That it is the duty of the Government of the United States to afford protection to naturalized citizens from foreign countries.

Resolved, That it is the duty of the Government of the United States to acquire Cuba at the earliest practicable moment.

The principal minority report, which was presented by Mr. Henry B. Payne, of Ohio, and signed by the members of the committee from Maine, New-Hampshire, Vermont, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New-Jersey, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa, Minnesota, New-York, and Pennsylvania, (all the Free States except California, Oregon, and Massachusetts), reaffirmed the Cincinnati Platform; declared that all rights of property are judicial in their character, and that the Democracy pledge themselves to defer to the decisions of the

Supreme Court on the subject; ample protection to citizens, native or naturalized, at home or abroad; aid to "a Pacific Railroad;" the acquisition of Cuba, and that all State resistance to the Fugitive Slave Law is revolutionary and

subversive of the Constitution.

[blocks in formation]

The fourth that, when the settlers in a Territory have adequate population to form a State Constitution, the right of Sovereignty commences, and, being consummated by their admission into the Union, they stand upon an equal footing with the citizens of other States, and that a State thus organized is to be admitted into the Union, Slavery or no Slavery.

The day was spent in fierce debate, without coming to a vote on any of these various propositions.

[blocks in formation]

Mr. Bigler moved the previous question. Mr. W. Montgomery (M. C.), of Pennsylvania, He did not regard as a compromise a proposimoved to lay Mr. Bigler's motion on the table. tion for a Congressional Slave Code and the reopening of the African Slave Trade; but, learning that the adoption of his motion would have the effect of tabling the whole subject, he withdrew it. A division of the question was called for, and the vote was first taken on the motion to recommit, which was carried, 152 to 151; but the proposition to instruct the committee was laid on the table, 242 to 56, as


Massachusetts, 124; Rhode Island, 4; Connecticut, 5; YEAS.-Maine, 8; New-Hampshire, 5; Vermont, 5; New-York, 35; Pennsylvania, 8; Delaware, 3; Maryland, 5; Virginia, 15; North Carolina, 10; South Carolina, 8; Georgia, 10; Florida, 3; Alabama, 9; Louisi6; Mississippi, 7; Texas, 4; Arkansas, 4; Missouri, 4; Kentucky, 5; Ohio, 23; 'Indiana, 13; Illinois, 11; Michigan, 6; Iowa, 4; Minnesota, 4; California, 32421.

NAYS.-Massachusetts, ; Connecticut, 1; New-Jersey, 7; Pennsylvania, 15; Maryland, 24; Missouri, 9; Tennessee, 11; Kentucky, 7; Indiana, 6; Wisconsin, 5; California,; Oregon, 8-561.

Subsequently, on the same day, Mr. Avery,

reported the following:

from the majority of the Committee on Platform, trict of Columbia. Now, we maintain that Congress has no right to prohibit or abolish Slavery in the District of Columbia. Why? Because it is an existing institution. Resolved, That the platform adopted by the Democratic It becomes the duty of Congress under the Constitution to party at Cincinnati be affirmed, with the following ex-protect and cherish the right of property in slaves in that planatory Resolutions: District, because the Constitution does not give them the power to prohibit or establish Slavery. Every session of Congress, Northern men, Southern men, men of all parties, are legislating to protect, cherish and uphold the institution of Slavery in the District of Columbia.

First. That the government of a Territory organized by an act of Congress, is provisional and temporary; and, during its existence, all citizens of the United States have an equal right to settle with their property in the Territory without their rights, either of person or property, being destroyed or impaired by congressional or territorial legislation. Second. That it is the duty of the Federal Government, in all its departments, to protect, when necessary, the rights of persons and property in the Territories, and wherever else its constitutional authority extends.


Third. That when the settlers in a Territory having an adequate population form a State Constitution, the right of sovereignty commences, and, being consummated by admission into the Union, they stand on an equal footing with the people of other States; and the State thus organized ought to be admitted into the Federal Union, whether its constitution prohibits or recognizes the institution of Slavery.

It is said that the Cincinnati platform is ambiguous, and that we must explain it. At the South, we have main. tained that it had no ambiguity; that it did not mean Popular Sovereignty; but our Northern friends say that it does mean Popular Sovereignty, Now, if we going to explain it and to declare its principles, I say let us either declare them openly, boldly, squarely, or let us leave it as it is in the Cincinnati Platform. I want, and we of the South want, no more doubtful platforms upon this or any other question. We desire that this Convention should take a bold, square stand. What do the minority of the committee propose? Their solution is to leave the question to the decision of the Supreme Court, and agree to abide by any decision that may be made by that tribunal between the citizens of a Territory upon the subject. Why, gentlemen of the minority, you cannot help yourselves. That is no concession to us. There is no necessity for putting that in the platform, because I take it for granted that you are all law-abiding citizens. Every gentleman here from a non-slaveholding State is a law-abiding citizen; and if he be so, why we know that when there is a decision of the Supreme Court, even adverse to his views, he will submit to it.

Fourth. That the Democratic party are in favor of the acquisition of the Island of Cuba, on such terms as shall be honorable to ourselves and just to Spain, at the earliest practicable moment.

Fifth. That the enactments of State legislatures to defeat the faithful execution of the Fugitive Slave Law, are hostile in character, subversive of the Constitution, and revolutionary in their effect.

You say that this is a judicial question. We say that it is not. But if it be a judicial question, it is immaterial to you how the platform is made, because all you will have to say is, "this is a judicial question; the majority of the Convention were of one opinion; I may entertain my own opinion upon the question; let the Supreme Court settle it."

Let us make a platform about which there can be no doubt, so that every man, North and South, may stand side by side on all issues connected with Slavery, and advocate the same principles. That is all we ask. All we demand at your hands is, that there shall be no equivocation and no doubt in the popular mind as to what our principles are.

Sixth. That the Democracy of the United States recognize it as the imperative duty of this Government to protect the naturalized citizen in all his rights, whether at home or in foreign lands, to the same extent as its nativeborn citizens.

Whereas, one of the greatest necessities of the age, in a political, commercial, postal and military point of view, is a speedy communication between the Pacific and Atlantic coasts: Therefore be it

Resolved, That the Democratic party do hereby pledge themselves to use every means in their power to secure the passage of some bill, to the extent of the constitutional authority of Congress, for the construction of a Pacific Railroad, from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean, at the earliest practicable moment.

Mr. Avery took the floor, and spoke at length in favor of his report, and in the course of his remarks said:

I have stated that we demand at the hands of our Northern brethren upon this floor that the great principle which we cherish should be recognized, and in that view I speak the common sentiments of our constituents at home; and I intend no reflection upon those who entertain a different opinion, when I say that the results and ultimate consequences to the Southern States of this confederacy, if the Popular Sovereignty doctrine be adopted as the doctrine of the Democratic party, would be as dangerous and subversive of their rights as the adoption of the principle of Congressional intervention or prohibition. We say that, in a contest for the occupation of the Territories of the United States, the Southern men encumbered with slaves cannot compete with the Emigrant Aid Society at the North. We say that the Emigrant Aid Society can send a voter to one of the Territories of the United States, to determine a question relating to slavery, for the sum of $200, while it would cost the Southern man the sum of $1500. We say, then, that wherever there is competition between the South and North, that the North can and will, at less expense and difficulty, secure power, control and dominion over the Territories of the Federal Government; and if, then, you establish the doctrine that a Territorial Legislature which may be established by Congress in any Territory has the right, directly or indirectly, to affect the institution of Slavery, then you can see that the Legislature by its action, either directly or indirectly, may finally exclude every man from the slaveholding States as effectually as if you had adopted the Wilmot Proviso out

and out.

But we are told that, in advocating the doctrine we now do, we are violating the principles of the Cincinnati platform. They say that the Cincinnati platform is a Popular Sovereignty platform; that it was intended to present and practically enforce that great principle. Now, we who made this report deny that this is the true construction of the Cincinnati platform. We of the South say that when we voted for the Cincinnati platform we understood, from the fact that the Territories stand in the same position as the District of Columbia, that non-interference and nonintervention in the Territories was that same sort of noninterference and non-intervention forbidden in the Dis

Mr. H. B. Payne, of Ohio, replied at length, and, in the course of his argument, said:

The question of Slavery had distracted the Courts and the party since 1820, and we hoped by the Compromis measures of 1850, the Kansas law of 1854, and the Platform of 1852 and 1856, that the policy of the Democratic party was a united and settled policy in respect to African slavery. The Democracy of the North have, throughout, stood by the South in vindication of their constitutional rights. For this they claim no credit. They have simply discharged their constitutional duty; and, though some Southern Senators may rise in their places and stigmatize us as unsound and rotten, we say we have done it in good faith, and we challege contradiction. We have supposed that this doctrine of Popular Sovereignty was a final settlement of the Slavery difficulty. You so understood it in the South. We are not claiming anything in our Platform but what the Cincinnati Platform was admitted to have established.

What was the doctrine of 1856? Non-intervention by Congress with the question of Slavery, and the submission of the question of Slavery in the Territories, under the Constitution, to the People.

It is said that one construction has been given to the Platform at the South and another at the North. He could prove from the Congressional debates that from 1850 to 1856 there was not a dissenting opinion expressed in Congress on this subject.

To show that Squatter Sovereignty had been generally accepted as the true Democratic doctrine, Mr. Payne quoted from eminent Southern Democratic Statesmen as follows:

FROM A SPEECH OF HON. HOWELL COBB, OF GEORGIA. "I stand upon a principle. I hold that the will of the majority of the people of Kansas should decide this question, and I say here to-night, before this people and before this country, that I, for one, shall abide the decision of the people there. I hold to the right of the People to self-government. I am willing for them to decide this question."


"I would not plant Slavery upon the soil of any portion of God's earth against the will of the people. The

« PreviousContinue »