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glory, hangs but as an appendage to the extended empire | presented, were immediately concerned. But when a over which your Republican Government is now called to question such as the amendments proposed by the gentlebear sway. Look down the long vista of futurity; see men from New York (Messrs. Tallmadge and Taylor), was your empire, in extent unequaled, in advantageous presented for consideration, involving constitutional prinsituation without a parallel, and occupying all the valua-ciples to a vast amount, pregnant with the future fate of ble part of one continent. Behold this extended empire, the Territory, portending destruction to the liberties of inhabited by the hardy sons of American freemen, that people, directly bearing on their rights of property, knowing their rights, and inheriting the will to protect their state rights, their all, he should consider it as a derethem-owners of the soil on which they live, and inter-liction of his duty, as retreating from his post, nay, double ested in the institutions which they labor to defend; with criminality, did he not raise his voice against their adoptwo oceans laving your shores, and tributary to your tion. purposes, bearing on their bosoms the commerce of our people; compared to yours, the governments of Europe dwindle into insignificance, and the whole world is without a parallel. But, sir, reverse this scene; people this fair domain with the slaves of your planters; extend Slavery, this bane of man, this abomination of heaven, over your extended empire, and you prepare its dissolution; you turn its accumulated strength into positive weakness; you cherish a canker in your breast; you put poison in your bosom; you place a vulture preying on your heart-nay, you whet the dagger and place it in the hands of a portion of your population, stimulated to use it, by every tie, human and divine. The envious con-ous of prostrating the rights and independence of a State trast between your happiness and their misery, between your liberty and their slavery, must constantly prompt them to accomplish your destruction. Your enemies will learn the source and the cause of your weakness. As often as external dangers shall threaten, or internal commotions await you, you will then realize that, by your own procurement, you have placed amidst your families, and in the bosom of your country, a population producing at once the greatest cause of individual danger, and of national weakness. With this defect, your government must crumble to pieces, and your people become the scoff of the world.
Sir, we have been told, with apparent confidence, that we have no right to annex conditions to a State, on its admission into the Union; and it has been urged that the proposed amendment, prohibiting the further introduction of Slavery, is unconstitutional. This position, asserted with so much confidence, remains unsupported by any argument, or by any authority derived from the Constitution itself. The Constitution strongly indicates an opposite conclusion, and seems to contemplate a difference between the old and the new States. The practice of the government has sanctioned this difference in many respects.
Sir, we have been told that this is a new principle for which we contend, never before adopted, or thought of. So far from this being correct, it is due to the memory of our ancestors to say, it is an old principle, adopted by them, as the policy of our country. Whenever the United States have had the right and the power, they have heretofore prevented the extension of Slavery. The States of Kentucky and Tennessee were taken off from other States, and were admitted into the Union without condition, because their lands were never owned by the United States. The Territory northwest of the Ohio is all the land which ever belonged to them. Shortly after the cession of those lands to the Union, Congress passed, in 1787, a compact, which was declared to be unalterable, the sixth article of which provides that, "there shall be neither Slavery nor involuntary servitude in the said Territory, otherwise than in the punishment for crimes, whereof the parties shall have been duly convicted." In pursuance of this compact, all the States formed from that Territory have been admitted into the Union upon various conditions, and, amongst which, the sixth article of this compact is included as one.
Mr. Scott entertained the opinion, that, under the 'Constitution, Congress had not the power to impose this, or any other restriction, or to require of the people of Missouri their assent to this condition, as a pre-requisite to their admission into the Union. He contended this from the language of the Constitution itself, from the practice in the admission of new States under that instrument, and from the express terms of the treaty of cession. The short view he intended to take of those points would, he' trusted, be satisfactory to all those who were not so anxious to usurp power as to sacrifice to its attainment the principles of our government, or who were not desirto chimerical views of policy or expediency. The authority to admit new States into the Union was granted in the third section of the fourth article of the Constitution, which declared that "new States may be admitted by the Congress into the Union." The only power given to the Congress by this section appeared to him to be, that of passing a law for the admission of the new State, leaving it in possession of all the rights, privileges, and immunities, enjoyed by the other States; the most valuable and prominent of which was that of forming and modifying their own State Constitution, and over which Congress had no superintending control, other than that expressly given in the fourth section of the same article, which read, "The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a republican form of government." This end accomplished, the guardianship of the United States over the Constitutions of the several States was fulfilled; and all restrictions, limitations and conditions beyond this, was so much power unwarrantably assumed. In illustration of this position, he would read an extract from one of the essays written by the late President Madison, contemporaneously with the Constitution of the United States, and from a very celebrated work: "In a confederacy founded on republican principles, and composed of republican members, the superintending government ought clearly to possess authority to defend the system against aristocratic or monarchical innovations. The more intimate the nature of such an union may be, the greater interest have the members in the political institutions of each other, and the greater right to insist that the forms of government under which the compact was entered into, should be substantially maintained. But this authority extends no further than to a guarantee of a republican form of gov ernment, which supposes a preexisting government of the form which is to be guaranteed. As long, therefore, as the existing republican forms are continued by the States, they are guaranteed by the Federal Constitution. Whenever the States may choose to substitute other republican forms, they have a right to do so, and to claim the Federal guarantee for the latter. The only restriction imposed on them is, that they shall not exchange republican for anti-republican Constitutions; a restriction which, it is presumed, will hardly be considered as a grievance."
Mr. Scott believed it to be a just rule of interpretation, that the enumeration of powers delegated to Congress weakened their authority in all cases not enumerated; Let gentlemen also advert to the law for the admission and that beyond those powers enumerated they had none, of the State of Louisiana into the Union; they will find it except they were essentially necessary to carry into effect filled with conditions. It was required not only to form a those that were given. The second section of the fourth Constitution upon the principles of a republican govern- article of the Constitution, which declared that "the citiment, but it was required to contain the "fundamental zens of each State shall be entitled to all the privileges principles of civil and religious liberty." It was even re- and immunities of citizens in the several States," was quired, as a condition of its admission, to keep its records, satisfactory, to his judgment, that it was intended the citiand its judicial and its legislative proceedings, in the Eng-zens of each State, forming a part of one harmonious lish language; and also to secure the trial by jury, and to surrender all claim to unappropriated lands in the Territory, with the prohibition to tax any of the United States' lands.
After this long practice and constant usage to annex conditions to the admission of a State into the Union, will gentlemen yet tell us it is unconstitutional, and talk of our principles being novel and extraordinary?
Mr. Scott, of Missouri, said:
He trusted that his conduct, during the whole of the time in which he had had the honor of a seat in the House, had convinced gentlemen of his disposition not to obtrude his sentiments on any other subjects than those on which the interest of his constituents, and of the Territory he re
whole, should have, in all things, equal privileges; the necessary consequence of which was, that every man, in his own State, should have the same rights, privileges, and powers, that any other citizen of the United States had in his own State; otherwise, discontent and murmurings would prevail against the general government who had deprived him of this equality.
For example, if the citizens of Pennsylvania, or Virginia, enjoyed the right, in their own State, to decide the question whether they would have Slavery or not, the citizens of Missouri, to give them the same privileges, must have the same right to decide whether they would or would not tolerate Slavery in their State; if it were otherwise, then the citizens of Pennsylvania and Virginia would have more rights, privileges and powers in their
respective States, than the citizens of Missouri would have in theirs. Mr. S. said he would make another quotation from the same work he had before been indebted to, which he believed had considerable bearing on this subject. "The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution, to the Federal Government, are few and defined; those which are to remain in the State Governments, are numerous and indefinite; the former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation, and foreign commerce, with which last the powers of taxation will, for the most part, be connected. The powers reserved to the several States will extend to all the objects, which in the ordinary course of affairs concern the lives, liberties, and properties of the people, and the internal order, improvement, and prosperity of the State." The applicability of this doctrine to the question under consideration was so obvious, that he would not detain the House to give examples, but leave it for gentlemen to make the application.
Mr. Scott believed, that the practice under the Constitution had been different from that now contended for by gentlemen; he was unapprised of any similar provision having ever been made, or attempted to be made, in relation to any other new State heretofore admitted. The argument drawn from the States formed out of the Territory northwest of the river Ohio, he did not consider as analogous; that restriction, if any, was imposed in pursuance of a compact, and only, so far as Congress could do, carried into effect the disposition of Virginia in reference to a part of her own original Territory, and was, in every respect, more just, because that provision was made and published to the world at a time when but few, if any, settlements were formed within that tract of country; and the children of those people of color belonging to the inhabitants then there, have been, and still were, held in bondage, and were not free at a given age, as was contemplated by the amendment under consideration; nor did he doubt but that it was competent for any of those States admitted in pursuance of the Ordinance of '87, to call a Convention, and so to alter their Constitution as to allow the introduction of slaves, if they thought proper to do so. To those gentlemen who had in their argument, in support of the amendments, adverted to the instance where Congress had, by the law authorizing the people of Louisiana to form a Constitution and State Government, exercised the power of imposing the terms and conditions on which they should be permitted to do so, he would recommend a careful examination and comparison of those terms with the Constitution of the United States, when, he doubted not, they would be convinced that these restrictions were only such as were in express and positive language defined in the latter instrustrument, and would have been equally binding on the people of Louisiana had they not been enumerated in the law giving them authority to form a Constitution for themselves.
Mr. S. said, he considered the contemplated conditions and restrictions, contained in the proposed amendments, to be unconstitutional and unwarrantable, from the provisions of the Treaty of Cession, by the third article of which it was stipulated, that "the inhabitants of the ceded Territory shall be incorporated in the Union of the United States, and admitted, as soon as possible, according to the principles of the Federal Constitution, to the enjoyment of all the rights, advantages, and immunities of citizens of the United States, and, in the mean time, they shall be maintained and protected in the free enjoyment of their liberty, property, and the religion which they profess."
The people were not left to the wayward discretion of this or any other government, by saying that they may be incorporated in the Union. The language was different and imperative: "they shall be incorporated." Mr. Scott understood by the term incorporated, that they were to form a constituent part of this republic; that they were to become joint partners in the character and councils of the country, and in the national losses and national gains; as a Territory they were not an essential part of the Government; they were a mere province, subject to the acts and regulations of the General Government in all cases whatsoever. As a Territory, they had not all the rights, advantages and immunities, of citizens of the United States. Mr. S. himself furnished an example, that, in their present condition, they had not all the rights of the other citizens of the Union. Had he a vote in this House? and yet these people were, during the war, subject to certain taxes imposed by Congress. Had those people any voice to give in the imposition of taxes to which they were subject, or in the disposition of the funds of the nation, and particularly those arising from the sales of the public lands, to which they already had, and still would largely contribute? Had they a voice to give in selecting the officers of this Government, or many
of their own? In short, in what had they equal rights, advantages and immunities, with the other citizens of the United States, but in the privilege to submit to a procrastination of their rights, and in the advantage to subscribe to your laws, your rules, your taxes, and your powers, even without a hearing? Those people were also to be admitted into the Union as soon as possible." Mr. Scott would infer from this expression, that it was the understanding of the parties, that so soon as any portion of the Territory, of sufficient extent to form a State, should contain the number of inhabitants required by law to entitle them to a representative on the floor of this House, that they then had the right to make the call for admission, and this admission, when made, was to be, not on conditions that gentlemen might deem expedient, not on conditions referable to future political views, not on conditions that the Constitution the people should form should contain a clause that would particularly open the door for emigration from the North or from the South, not on condition that the future population of the State should come from a Slaveholding or Non-Slaveholding State, "but according to the principles of the Federal Constitution," and none other.
Mr. Scott had trusted that gentlemen who professed to be actuated by motives of humanity and principle would not encourage a course of dissimulation, or, by any vote of theirs, render it necessary for the citizens of Missouri to act equivocally to obtain their rights. He was unwilling to believe, that political views alone led gentlemen on this or any other occasion; but, from the language of the member from New-York (Mr. Taylor), he was compelled to suspect that they had their influence upon him. That gentlemen has told us, that if ever he left his present residence, it would be for Illinois or Missouri; at all events, he wished to send out his brothers and his sons. Mr. Scott begged that gentleman to relieve him from the awful apprehension excited by the prospect of this accession of population. He hoped the House would excuse him while he stated, that he did not desire that gentleman, his sons, or his brothers, in that land of brave, noble, and independent freemen. The member says that the latitude is too far North to admit of Slavery there. Would the gentleman cast his eye on the map before him, he would there see, that a part of Kentucky, Virginia, and Maryland, were as far North as the Northern boundary of the proposed State of Missouri. Mr. Scott would thank the gentleman if he would condescend to tell him what precise line of latitude suited his conscience, his humanity, or his political views, on this subject. Could that member be serious, when he made the parallel of latitude the measure of his good-will to those unfortunate blacks? Or was he trying how far he could go in fallacious argument and absurdity, without creating one blush even on his own cheek, for inconsistency? What, starve the negroes out, pen them up in the swamps and morasses, confine them to Southern latitudes, to long, scorching days of labor and fatigue, until the race becomes extinct, that the fair land of Missouri may be tenanted by that gentleman, his brothers, and sons? He expected from the majority of the House a more liberal policy, and better evidence that they really were actuated by humane motives.
The House bill, thus passed, reached the Senate, February 17th, when it was read twice and sent to a Select Committee already raised on a like application from Alabama, consisting of
Messrs. Tait, of Georgia; Morrow, of Ohio; Williams, of Mississippi; Edwards, of Illinois; Williams, of Tennessee. On the 22nd, Mr. Tait, from this Committee, reported the bill with amendments, striking out the Anti-Slavery restrictions inserted by the House. This bill was taken up in Committee of the Whole, on the 27th, when Mr. Wilson of New-Jersey moved its postponement to the 5th of March-that is, to the end of the sessionnegatived: Yeas 14; Nays 23.
The Senate then proceeded to vote on agreeing to the amendments reported by the Select Committee, viz.: 1, to strike out of the House bill the following:
And that all children of slaves born within the said State, after the admission thereof into the Union, shall be Free, but may be held to service until the age of twenty-one years.
Which was stricken out by the following vote: Yeas-Against the Restriction -27. Nays-For the Restriction-7.
The Senate then proceeded to vote on the residue of the House Restriction, as follows:
And provided also, That the further introduction of Slavery or involuntary servitude be prohibited, except for the punishment of crimes, whereof the party shall have been duly convicted.
The vote on this clause was as follows: Yeas-For striking out the Restriction-22. Nays -Against striking out -16.
The bill thus amended was ordered to be engrossed, and was (March 2nd-last day but one of the Session) read a third time, and passed without a division. The bill was on that day returned to the House, and the amendments of the Senate read: whereupon, Mr. Tallmadge, of New-York, moved that the bill be postponed indefinitely. Yeas 69; Nays 74.
[The record shows hardly a vote changed from Yea, on the original passage of the Restriction, to Nay now, but many members who voted then were now absent or silent.]
The vote was then taken on concurring in the Senate's amendments, as aforesaid, and the House refused to concur; Yeas 76; Nays 78.
[Hardly a vote changed; but more members voting than on the previous division, and less than when the Restriction was carried.]
The bill was now returned to the Senate, with a message of non-concurrence; when Mr. Tait moved that the Senate adhere to its amendment, which was carried without a division. The bill being thus remanded to the House, Mr. Taylor, of New-York, moved that the House adhere to its disagreement, which prevailed. Yeas 78; Nays 66. So the bill fell between the two Houses, and was lost.
The Southern portion of the then Territory of Missouri (organized by separation from Louisiana in 1812) was excluded from the proposed State of Missouri, and organized as a separate Territory, entitled Arkansas.
The bill being under consideration, Mr. Taylor, of New-York, moved that the foregoing restriction be applied to it also; and the clause, proposing that slaves born therein after the passage of this act be free at twenty-five years of age, was carried (February 17th) by 75 Yeas to 73 Nays; but that providing against the further introduction of Slaves was lost; Yeas 70; Nays 71. The next day, the clause just adopted was stricken out, and the bill ultimately passed without any allusion to Slavery. Arkansas of course became a Slave Territory, and ultimately (1836) a Slave State.
THE SECOND MISSOURI STRUGGLE.
A new Congress assembled on the 6th of December, 1819. Mr. Clay was again chosen Speaker. On the 8th, Mr. Scott, delegate from Missouri, moved that the memorial of her Territorial Legislature, as also of several citizens, praying her admission into the Union as a State, be referred to a Select Committee; carried, and Messrs. Scott, of Missouri, Robertson, of Kentucky, Terrell, of Georgia, Strother, of Virginia, and De Witt, of New-York, (all but the last from the Slave region,) were appointed said
Mr. Strong, of New-York, that day gave notice of a bill "To prohibit the further extension of Slavery in the United States."
On the 14th, Mr. Taylor, of New-York, moved a Select Committee on this subject, which was granted; and the mover, with Messrs. Livermore, of New-Hampshire, Barbour, (P. P.) of Virginia, Lowndes, of South-Carolina, Fuller, of Massachusetts, Hardin, of Kentucky, and Cuthbert, of Georgia, were appointed such committee, A majority of this Committee being Pro-Slavery, Mr. Taylor could do nothing; and on the 28th the Committee was, on motion, discharged from the further consideration of the subject.
On the same day, Mr. Taylor moved:
That a Committee be appointed with instructions to
report a bill prohibiting the further admission of slaves into the Territories of the United States West of the river Mississippi.
On motion of Mr. Smith, of Maryland, this resolve was sent to the Committee of the Whole, and made a special order for January 10th; but it was not taken up, and appears to have slept the sleep of death.
In the Senate, the memorial of the Missouri Territorial Legislature, asking admission as a State, was presented by Mr. Smith, of SouthCarolina, December 29th, and referred to the Judiciary Committee, which consisted of
Messrs. Smith, of South Carolina; Leake, of Mississippi; Burrill, of Rhode Island; Logan, of Kentucky; Otis of
DANIEL WEBSTER ON SLAVERY EXTENSION.
The following is extracted from the Memorial to the Congress of the United States, on the subject of restraining the increase of Slavery in New States to be admitted into the Union," in pursuance of a vote of the inhabitants of Boston and its vicinity, assembled at the State House on the 3d of December, 1819, which was drawn up by Daniel Webster, and signed by himself, George Blake, Josiah Quincy, James T. Austin, etc. It is inserted here instead of the resolves of the various New England Legislatures, as a fuller and clearer statement of the views of the great body of the people of that section during the pendency of the Missouri question:
To the Senate and House of Representatives of the
United States, in Congress assembled:
The undersigned, inhabitants of Boston and its vicinity, beg leave most respectfully and humbly to represent: That the question of the introduction of Slavery into the new States to be formed on the west side of the Mississippi River, appears to them to be a question of the last importance to the future welfare of the United States. If the progress of this great evil is ever to be arrested, it seems to the undersigned that this is the time and it appears to us that the happiness of unborn millions to arrest it. A false step taken now, cannot be retraced; rests on the measure which Congress on this occasion may adopt. Considering this as no local question, nor a question to be decided by a temporary expediency, but as involving great interests of the whole United States, and affecting deeply and essentially those objects of common defense, general welfare, and the perpetuation self was formed, we have presumed, in this way, to offer of the blessings of liberty, for which the Constitution itour sentiments and express our wishes to the National Legislature. And, as various reasons have been suggested against prohibiting Slavery in the new States, it may perhaps be permitted to us to state our reasons,
both for believing that Congress possesses the Constitutional power to make such prohibition a condition, on
the admission of a new State into the Union, and that it is just and proper that they should exercise that power.
"And in the first place, as to the Constitutional authority of Congress. The Constitution of the United
States has declared that "Congress shall have power to | dispose of and make all needful rules and regulations respecting the Territory or other property belonging to the United States: and nothing in this Constitution shall be so construed as to prejudice the claims of the United States or of any particular State." It is very well known, that the saving in this clause of the claims of any particular State, was designed to apply to claims by the then existing States, of territory which was also claimed by the United States as their own property. It has, therefore, no bearing on the present question. The power, then, of Congress over its own Territories, is, by the very terms of the Constitution, unlimited. It may make all "needful rules and regulations," which of course include all such regulations as its own views of policy or expediency shall, from time to time, dictate. If, therefore, in its judgment it be needful for the benefit of a Territory to enact a prohibition of Slavery, it would seem to be as much within its power of Legislation as any other act of local policy. Its sovereignty being complete and universal as to the Territory, it may exercise over it the most ample jurisdiction in every respect. It possesses, in this view, all the authority which any State Legislature possesses over its own Territory; and if any State Legislature may, in its discretion, abolish or prohibit Slavery within its own limits, in virtue of its general Legislative authority, for the same reason Congress also may exercise the like authority over its own Territories. And that a State Legislature, unless restrained by some Constitutional provision, may so do, is unquestionable, and has been established by general practice.
any portion of the American Confederacy. The Missouri Territory is a new country. If its extensive and fertile field shall be opened as a market for slaves, the Government will seem to become a party to a traffic which, in so many acts, through so many years, it has denounced as impolitic, unchristian, inhuman. To enact laws to punish the traffic, and, at the same time, to tempt cupidity and avarice by the allurements of an insatiable market, is inconsistent and irreconcilable. Government, by such a course, would only defeat its own purposes, and render nugatory its own measures. Nor can the laws derive support from the manners of the people, if the power of moral sentiment be weakened by enjoying, under the permission of Government, great facilities to commit offenses. The laws of the United States have denounced heavy penalties against the traffic in slaves, because such traffic is deemed unjust and inhuman. We appeal to the spirit of these laws. We appeal to this justice and humanity. We ask her whether they ought not to operate, on the present occasion, with all their force? We have a strong feeling of the injustice of any toleration of Slavery. Circumstances have entailed it on a portion of our community, which cannot be immediately relieved from it without consequences more injurious than the suffering of the evil. But to permit it in a new country, where yet no habits are formed which render it indispensable, what is it, but to encourage that rapacity, and fraud and violence, against which we have so long pointed the denunciations of our penal code? What is it, but to tarnish the proud fame of the country? What is it, but to throw suspicion on its good faith, and to render questionable all its professions of regard for the rights of humanity and the liberties of mankind?
As inhabitants of a free country-as citizens of a great and rising Republic-as members of a Christian community-as living in a liberal and enlightened age, and as feeling ourselves called upon by the dictates of religion and humanity, we have presumed to offer our sentiments to Congress on this question, with a solicitude for the event far beyond what a common occasion could inspire."
If the constitutional power of Congress to make the proposed prohibition be satisfactorily shown, the justice and policy of such prohibition seem to the undersigned to be supported by plain and strong reasons. The permission of Slavery in a new State, necessarily draws after it an extension of that inequality of representation, which already exists in regard to the original States. It cannot be expected that those of the original States, which do not hold slaves, can look on such an extension as being politically just. As between the original States the representation rests on compact and plighted faith; Instead of reprinting the Speeches elicited by and your memorialists have no wish that that compact this fruitful theme, which must necessarily, to should be disturbed, or that plighted faith in the slightest degree violated. But the subject assumes an entirely a great extent, be a mere reproduction of ideas different character, when a new State proposes to be admitted. With her there is no compact, and no faith expressed in the debate of the last session, plighted; and where is the reason that she could come already given, we here insert the Resolves of into the Union with more than an equal share of political importance and political power? Already the ratio of the Legislatures of New-York, New-Jersey, representation, established by the Constitution, has given to the States holding slaves twenty members of the House Pennsylvania, Delaware and Kentucky-the first of Representatives more than they would have been en- three being unanimous expressions in favor of titled to, except under the particular provision of the Constitution. In all probability, this number will be Slavery Restriction; the fourth, from a Slave doubled in thirty years. Under these circumstances, we deem it not an unreasonable expectation that the inhabi-State, also in favor of such Restriction, though tants of Missouri should propose to come into the Union, probably not unanimously agreed to by the renouncing the right in question, and establishing a Constitution prohibiting it forever. Without dwelling on Legislature; the last against Restriction, and this topic, we have still thought it our duty to present it also (we presume) unanimous. to the consideration of Congress. We present it with a The Legislatures deep and earnest feeling of its importance, and we re- of the Free States were generally unanimous for spectfully solicit for it the full consideration of the National Legislature. Restriction; those of the Slave States (Delaware excepted) against it. It is not deemed necessary to print more than the following:
Your memorialists were not without the hope that the
time had at length arrived when the inconvenience and the danger of this description of population had become apparent in all parts of this country and in all parts of the civilized world. It might have been hoped that the new States themselves would have had such a view of their own permanent interests and prosperity as would have led them to prohibit its extension and increase. The wonderful increase and prosperity of the States north of the Ohio is unquestionably to be ascribed, in a great measure, to the consequences of the ordinance of 1787; and few, indeed, are the occasions, in the history of nations, in which so much can be done, by a single act, for the benefit of future generations, as was done by that ordinance, and as may now be done by the Congress of the United States. We appeal to the justice and to the wisdom of the National Councils to prevent the further progress of a great and serious evil. We appeal to those who look forward to the remote consequences of their measures, and who cannot balance a temporary or trifling inconvenience, if there were such, against a permanent, growing, and desolating evil. We cannot forbear to remind the two Houses of Congress that the early and decisive measures adopted by the American Government for the abolition of the slave-trade, are among the proudest memorials of our nation's glory. That Slavery was ever tolerated in the Republic is, as yet, to be attributed to the policy of another Government. No imputation, thus far, rests on
State of New-York, in Assembly, Jan. 17, 1820:
Whereas, The inhibiting the further extension of Slavery in these United States is a subject of deep concern among the people of this State; and whereas we consider Slavery as an evil much to be deplored; and that every further extension; and that the Constitution of the United constitutional barrier should be interposed to prevent its States clearly gives Congress the right to require of new States, not comprised within the original boundaries of these United States, the prohibition of Slavery, as a condition of its admission into the Union: Therefore, That our Senators be instructed, and our Representatives Resolved (if the honorable the Senate concur herein), in Congress be requested, to oppose the admission as a State into the Union, any territory not comprised as aforesaid, without making the prohibition of Slavery therein an indispensable condition of admission; therefore,
the Senate and Assembly of this State, to transmit copies Resolved, That measures be taken by the clerks of of the preceding resolutions to each of our Senators and Representatives in Congress.
(Unanimously concurred in by the Senate.)
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Mr. Wilson, of N. J., communicated the following Resolutions of the Legislature of the State of New-Jersey, which were read:
Whereas, A Bill is now depending in the Congress of the United States, on the application of the people in the Territory of Missouri for the admission of that Territory as a State into the Union, not containing provisions against Slavery in such proposed State, and a question is made upon the right and expediency of such provision, The representatives of the people of New-Jersey, in Legislative Council and General Assembly of the said State, now in session, deem it a duty they owe to themselves, to their constituents, and posterity, to declare and make known the opinions they hold upon this momentous subject; and,
1. They do resolve and declare, That the further admission of Territories into the Union, without restriction of Slavery, would, in their opinion, essentially impair the right of this and other existing States to equal representation in Congress (a right at the foundation of the political compact), inasmuch as such newly-admitted slaveholding States would be represented on the basis of their slave population; a concession made at the formation of the Constitution in favor of the then existing States, but never stipulated for new States, nor to be inferred from any article or clause in that instrument.
2. Resolved, That to admit the Territory of Missouri as a State into the Union, without prohibiting Slavery there, would, in the opinion of the representatives of the people of New-Jersey aforesaid, be no less than to sanction this great political and moral evil, furnish the ready means of peopling a vast Territory with slaves, and perpetuate all the dangers, crimes, and pernicious effects of domestic bondage.
the last Congress of the United States, and will probably be as earnestly urged during the existing session of that body, which has a palpable tendency to impair the political relations of the several States; which is calculated to mar the social happiness of the present and future generations; which, if adopted, would impede the march of humanity and Freedom through the world; and would transfer from a misguided ancestry an odious stain and fix it indelibly upon the present race-a measure, in brief, which proposes to spread the crimes and cruelties of Slavery from the banks of the Mississippi to the shores of the Pacific. When a measure of this character is seriously advocated in the republican Congress of America, in the nineteenth century, the several States are invoked by the duty which they owe to the Deity, by the veneration which they entertain for the memory of the founders of the Republic, and by a tender regard for posterity, to protest against its adoption, to refuse to covenant with crime, and to limit the range of an evil that already hangs in awful boding over so large a portion of the Union.
Nor can such a protest be entered by any State with greater propriety than by Pennsylvania. This Commonwealth has as sacredly respected the rights of other States as it has been careful of its own; it has been the invariable aim of the people of Pennsylvania to extend to the universe, by their example, the unadulterated blessings of civil and religious freedom; and it is their pride that they have been at all times the practical advo cates of those improvements and charities among men which are so well calculated to enable them to answer the purposes of their Creator; and above all, they may boast that they were foremost in removing the pollution of Slavery from among them.
lf, indeed, the measure, against which Pennsylvania considers it her duty to raise her voice, were calculated to abridge any of the rights guaranteed to the several States; if, odious as Slavery is, it was proposed to hasten its extinction by means injurious to the States upon which it was unhappily entailed, Pennsylvania would be among the first to insist upon a sacred observance of the Constitutional compact. But it cannot be pretended that the rights of any of the States are at all to be affected by refusing to extend the mischiefs of human bondage over the boundless regions of the West, a Territory which formed no part of the Union at the adoption of the Constitution; which has been but lately purchased from a European Power by the people of the Union at large; which may or may not be admitted as a State into the Union at the discretion of Congress; which must establish a Republican form of Government, and no other; and whose climate, affords none of the pretexts urged for resorting to the labor of natives of the torrid zone; such a Territory has no right, inherent or acquired, such as those States possessed which established the existing Constitution. When that Constitution was framed in Septem
3. Resolved, As the opinion of the Representatives aforesaid, That inasmuch as no Territory has a right to be admitied into the Union, but on the principles of the Federal Constitution, and only by a law of Congress, consenting thereto on the part of the existing States, Congress may rightfully, and ought to refuse such law, unless upon the reasonable and just conditions, assented to on the part of the people applying to become one of the States. 4. Resolved, In the opinion of the Representatives aforesaid, That the article of the Constitution which restrains Congress from prohibiting the migration or importation of slaves, until after the year 1808, does, by necessary implication, admit the general power of Congress over the subject of Slavery, and concedes to them the right to regulate and restrain such migration and importation after that time, into the existing, or any newly-to-ber, 1787, the concession that three-fifths of the slaves in be-created State.
5. Resolved, As the opinion of the Representatives of the people of New-Jersey aforesaid, That inasmuch as Congress have a clear right to refuse the admission of a Territory into the Union, by the terms of the Constitution, they ought, in the present case, to exercise that absolute discretion in order to preserve the political rights of the several existing States, and prevent the great national disgrace and multiplied mischiefs, which must ensue from conceding it, as a matter of right, in the immense Territories yet to claim admission into the Union beyond the Mississippi, that they may tolerate Slavery.
6. Resolved, (with the concurrence of Council,) That the Governor of this State be requested to transmit a copy of the foregoing resolutions to each of the Senators and Representatives of this State in the Congress of the United States.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
the States then existing should be represented in Congress, could not have been intended to embrace regions at that time held by a foreign power. On the contrary, so anxious were the Congress of that day to confine human bondage within its ancient home, that on the 13th of July, 1787, that body unanimously declared that Slavery or involuntary servitude should not exist in the extensive Territories bounded by the Ohio, the Mississippi, Canada and the Lakes; and in the ninth article of the Constitution itself, the power of Congress to prohibit the emigration of servile persons after 1808, is expressly recognized; nor is there to be found in the statute-book a single instance of the admission of a Territory to the rank of a State, in which Congress have not adhered to the right, vested in them by the Constitution, to stipu. late with the Territory upon the conditions of the boon.
The Senate and House of Representatives of Pennsylvania, therefore, cannot but deprecate any departure from the humane and enlightened policy pursued not only by the illustrious Congress which framed the Constitution, but by their successors without exception. They are per
A motion was made by Mr. Duane and Mr. suaded that, to open the fertile regions of the West to a Thackara, and read as follows:
The Senate and House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, while they cherish the right of the individual States to express their opinion upon all public measures proposed in the Congress of the Union, are aware that its usefulness must in a great degree depend upon the discretion with which it is exercised; they believe that the right ought not to be resorted to upon trivial subjects or unimportant occasions; but they are also persuaded that there are moments when the neglect to exercise it would be a dereliction of public duty.
Such an occasion, as in their judgment demands the frank expression of the sentiments of Pennsylvania, is now presented. A measure was ardently supported in
servile race, would tend to increase their numbers beyond all past example, would open a new and steady market for the lawless venders of human flesh, and would render all schemes for obliterating this most foul blot upon the American character, useless and unavailing.
Under these convictions, and in the full persuasion that upon this topic there is but one opinion in Pennsylvania"Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, That the Senators of this State in the Congress of the United States be, and they are hereby instructed, and that the Representatives of this State in the Congress of the United States be, and they are hereby requested, to vote against the admission of any Territory as a State into the Union, unless said Territory shall stipulate and agree