« PreviousContinue »
ten miles from Providence, but again dispersed on the approach of the State forces. Three days afterwards the affair was over. Dorr fled from the State, and took refuge first in Connecticut, and then in New Hampshire. A reward of $4,000 being offered for his apprehension by Rhode Island, he voluntarily returned home, was tried, convicted of high treason, and sentenced to imprisonment for life. In 1847 he was pardoned, and, in 1852, the Legislature restored him to his civil rights, and ordered the record of his sentence to be expunged. He lived to see a liberal constitution and his party in possession of the reins of government.
years. It was one of the most fatal acts for
Rhode Island is now as democratic as any of her sister States. She boasts a population nearly as great as that of Texas, and twice that of Florida, while, in intelligence and industrial enterprise, she is vastly before either of the States named. In the hour of the General Government's peril she has proven a tower of loyalty, and the names of her sons occupy a favored place in the record of the struggle against revolution and national dis-ed, but the great political party which it integration.
"When admitted as a State, the said territory, or any portion of the same, shall be received into the Union, with or without Slavery, as their constitution may prescribe at the time of their admission."
Thus abrogating the venerable and respected Missouri Compromise Act, of 1820, while it further established the principle of "Squatter Sovereignty," which gave to the people of a territory the right to make their own laws-denying to Congress the power to legislate laws for its territories.
That act became a law, after one of the most exciting sessions of Congress known for
What was most important, however, in this unfortunate re-opening of the Slavery question, was, not the local struggle which follow
called into existence. Taking the powerful
The matter resulted:
1. In the admission of Kansas as a Free State.
2. In the formation of the Republican Party.
3. In the election of a Republican President.
4.. In the "rebellion" of the Slave States against his rule.
HISTORICAL SUMMARY OF EVENTS,
FROM NOVEMBER 6, 1860, TO DECEMBER 27, 1860.
Nov. 6.-Presidential Election day. Four candi- | arsenals, &c., in the Southern States, are as follows: dates before the people, viz.: Abraham Lincoln, Republican, of Illinois; Stephen A. Douglas, Democrat, of Illinois; John C. Breckenridge, Democrat, of Kentucky; John Bell, Unionist, of Tennessee. Seventeen States out of thirty-three States cast their majority vote for Lincoln electors; eleven States for Breckenridge; three for Bell; while Douglas received the vote of Missouri, and three-sevenths of the vote of New-Jersey.
Nov. 10.-Bill introduced in South Carolina Legislature to call out and equip 10,000 volunteers. -United States Senator, James Chesnut, Jr., from South Carolina, resigns his seat in the Senate.
-South Carolina Legislature orders an election of Delegates to a Convention for taking action on the question of secession; the election to be held Dec.
6th; the Convention to assemble Dec. 17th.
at Fort Monroe, Va., eight companies of artillery; at Fayetteville arsenal, N. C., one company of artillery; at Fort Moultrie, S. C., two companies of artillery; at Augusta, Ga., one company of artillery; Key West, Florida, one company of artillery; Barrancas barracks, near Pensacola, Fla., one company of artillery; Baton Rouge, La., one company of artillery; total, about 800 men. There are about 120 United States marines at Norfolk and Pensacola.
Nov. 17.-Grand gathering of citizens of Charleston, S. C., "to inaugurate the revolution." Pine pole, 100 feet high, raised, and the Palmetto flag unfurled. Hotels, private residences, and public buildings all display the flag. Great rejoicing. Secession badges worn by men, women and children.
-Georgia Legislature appropriates $1,000,000," to
state stocks, railway shares, &c. Nov. 18.-General depreciation of government and Very unsettled state in the money market. General suspension of -Georgia Legislature refuses to order an election payment of debts due the North by Southern merof United States Senator, to succeed Alfred Iverson.chants, looked for in New York and Philadelphia. --Immense excitement throughout the South Large meetings held in New Orleans, Augusta arm and equip the State." Orders an election of Montgomery, Vicksburg, &c., to favor disunion. Exciting cabinet session at Washington, to "take tion on the alarming state of the country." Great number of resignations of Post-masters, Customhouse officers, &c., received at the Departments in Washington. Minute men" organizations making throughout the Cotton States.
Delegates to a State Convention, to be held Janac-uary 2. The Convention to assemble January 9.
-South Carolina Legislature authorizes banks to suspend specie payment.
-Major Anderson ordered to Fort Moultrie, to re-
Nov. 20.-Large arrivals in New York of arms for the South. Heavy orders received and filled in New York for rifles, ammunition, pistols, &c., for the
Nov. 11.-United States Senator Hammond, of Southern States. South Carolina, resigns his seat in the Senate.
Nov. 13.-South Carolina Legislature adjourns sine die.
Nov. 14.-Immense torch-light procession in Columbia, S. C., in honor of the action of the Legislature of S. C.
-Florida, by her Governor, telegraphed to the Governor of South Carolina, Florida is with the gallant Palmetto flag."
Nov. 15.-Senator Toombs makes a "powerful secession speech" in Milledgeville, Georgia.
-Governor Moore, of Alabama, announces his intention to order an election of Delegates to a State Convention; the election to be held Dec. 24. advises the people to prepare for secession. The Convention to assemble January 7th.
-Governor Letcher, of Virginia, calls an extra session of the Legislature, to assemble Jan. 7, to "take into consideration the condition of public affairs."
-The United States troops garrisoning the forts,
Nov. 22.-The Washington and Philadelphia banks suspend specie payment. The banks of Baltimore and Richmond suspended specie payment two days previously. Notes of all Southern banks at a heavy discount in New York. The New York banks resolve to consolidate funds and afford relief by a liberal line of discount.
Nov. 23. Suspension of North Carolina banks legalised by the Legislature of that State. Numerous bank suspensions announced in Pittsburg, Pa., Trenton, N. J., Charleston, S. C. The Boston banks resolve to adopt the course of the banks of New York.
President is understood to take strong grounds -Disagreements in the Cabinet reported. The against the right of secession. Messrs. Cobb, Thompson and Floyd are reported as threatening to resign in consequence. They are understood to favor a " peaceful separation."
-Great public meeting in New Orleans, to organize a " Southern Rights Association," whose pur pose is to aid in carrying the State out of the Union.
Nov. 27.-Gov. Hicks, of Maryland, refuses to con- to convene the Legislature; directing that a State vene the Legislature. He writes a letter, taking [ Convention be called, and telling the Southern strong ground against secession, and says his pur- States that Tennessee will stand by the action of pose is to avoid any precipitation in action on the the Southern Convention for weal or woe. part of the secessionists in the State.
Dec. 3.-Preamble and resolutions adopted in the
Nov. 29.-A dispatch from Washington says: "Let-Georgia Legislature, (House,) proposing a Confer ters from members of Congress and others, in South Carolina, written before the Presidential election, are exhibited here, proving that this revolutionary scheme was concocted long ago, and that a secret military organization was formed to carry out the scheme of resistance in the event of Mr. Lincoln's
-The Vermont Legislature - 125 to 58 votes against a repeal of its Personal Liberty bill.
-Day of Thanksgiving observed in most of the States. Sermons were preached by eminent divines, generally urging a policy of peace, concession, and fraternization in the great questions of the times.
-The Mississippi Legislature authorizes the Governor to appoint as many Commissioners as he may deem necessary, to visit each of the slave-holding States, to inform them that the Mississippi Legislature had authorized a Convention to consider the necessary steps for meeting the crisis. The Commissioners were to solicit the co-operation of Legislatures to devise means "for their common defence and safety." The following gentlemen were afterward named by the Governor: Virginia, C. P. Smith; Georgia, W. L. Harris; Maryland, A. H. Handy; Tennessee, T. J. Wharton; South Carolina, C. E. Hooker; Alabama, J. W. Matthews; Kentucky, W. S. Featherston; Louisiana, Wirt Adams; Arkansas, Geo. R. Fall; Texas, H. H. Miller; Florida, E. M. Yerger; Delaware, Henry Dickinson; North Carolina, Jacob Thompson.
-Dispatches from New Orleans state: " Abolitionists are daily arrested. There is immense excitement, and the secession feeling momentarily increasing. Disunion is inevitable."
Nov. 30.-The North Carolina Legislature refuses to go into an election for United States Senator, in place of Mr. Clingman.
-The Bank bill to suspend specie payment of banks in Georgia re-passed over the Governor's veto.
-Bill introduced into the Georgia Legislature (House) prohibiting the levying of any execution from the Courts of the United States on the property of citizens of Georgia prior to December, 1861-all sales under such process to be void.
Dec 1.-A committee of citizens of Texas, comprised of leading men, petitioned Gov. Houston to convene the Legislature. The Governor responded, that, viewing the proposed measure unwise, he could not call the Legislature; but if a majority of the citizens of the State petitioned for it, he could not stand in the way. The secession feeling largely predominates in the Southern and Eastern portion
of the State.
-Florida Legislature passed the Convention Bill unanimously. The Convention to meet Jan. 3d.
-Banks in Georgia generally suspend specie pay
Immense secession meeting at Memphis, Tennessee. Resolutions were passed accepting the "irrepressible conflict;" calling upon the Governor
ence of the Southern States, at Atlanta, on the 20th of February, to counsel and advise as to the mode and manner of resistance to the North in the exist ing exigency, was made the special order for tomorrow. The preamble and resolutions take strong grounds in favor of having all sectional questions finally settled, and objects to separate action.
-Meeting in Boston, to commemorate the anniversary of John Brown's execution broken up. Considerable violence shown to its participators.
-Congress meets at Washington. Full representation from most of the States. South Carolina representatives in their seats, except Mr. Bonham. Her Senators absent.
-President's Message read to the two Houses, and the Department reports sent in. The Message takes strong grounds for conciliation; blames the North for its aggressions on Slavery; proposes plans of compromise; denies the right of secession, yet disparages coercion. Message was attacked fiercely in the Senate by Clingman, of North Carolina, and defended by Crittenden, of Kentucky. In the House, Mr. Boteler, of Virginia, offered a resolution to appoint a Special Committee of one from each State, to whom should be referred so much of the President's Message as "relates to the present perilous condition of the country."
Dec. 4.-The President dispatches a messenger (Mr. Trescott) to South Carolina, to urge a postponement of action in regard to secession or nullifi cation, until Congress could act on compromises and remedies.
Dec. 5.-Meeting of the State Electoral Colleges. Abraham Lincoln for President, and Hannibal Hamlin for Vice-President, receive the votes of seventeen States or one hundred and eighty electoral votes.
-Exciting speeches in the United States Senate by Southern Senators looking to secession as their only relief from Northern domination.
Dec. 6. Great Union meeting and oration in Richmond, Va.
-The Speaker of the United States House of Representatives announced the Committee of one from each State, called for under Mr. Boteler's resolution, (Dec. 4,) to consider "so much of the President's Message as relates to the present perilous condi tion of the country." The names are as follows:Ohio, Mr. Corwin, Chairman; Virginia, Mr. Millson; Massachusetts, Mr. Adams; North Carolina, Mr. Winslow; New York, Mr. Humphreys; South Carolina, Mr. Boyce; Pennsylvania, Mr. Campbell; Georgia, Mr. Love; Connecticut, Mr. Ferry; Mary. land, Mr. Davis; Rhode Island, Mr. Robinson; Delaware, Mr. Whiteley; New Hampshire, Mr. Tappan; New Jersey, Mr. Stratton; Kentucky, Mr. Bristow ; Vermont, Mr. Morrill; Tennessee, Mr. Nelson; Indiana, Mr. Dunn; Louisiana, Mr. Taylor; Mississippi, Mr. Davis; Illinois, Mr. Kellogg; Alabama, Mr. Houston; Maine, Mr. Morse; Missouri, Mr. Phelps; Arkansas, Mr. Rust; Michigan, Mr. Howard; Florida, Mr. Hawkins; Texas, Mr. Hamilton; Wisconsin, Mr. Washburne; Iowa, Mr. Curtis; California, Mr. Burch; Minnesota, Mr. Windom; Oregon, Mr. Stout.
-The President to-day explicitly expressed his determination to send no more troops to the forts near Charleston, and said everything would be done on his part to avoid a collision. Major Anderson has made no request for re-enforcements.
-A dispatch from Washington states that the Secetary of the Treasury, Howell Cobb, has had repeated interviews with Mr. Hunter, Chairman of the Committee on Finance in the Senate, and finds himself unable to extricate the Treasury from its present bankrupt condition; consequently he proposes to resign at once.
Dec. 8.-The Kentucky banks resolve to continue specie payment, as a suspension can afford no commercial relief.
-Governor of Tennessee calls an extra session of the Legislature, to convene Jan. 7th, to "consider the present condition of the country."
urged the policy of strengthening Major Anderson fully. Mr. Cass, it was understood, made that policy a sine qua non of his stay in the Cabinet.
Dec. 14.-Lewis Cass, Secretary of State, resigns his seat in the Cabinet. His resignation causes much feeling and comment. It was owing to his disapproval of the President's inaction in regard to re-enforcing Southern forts, arsenals, navy yards, &c. Dec. 15.-Attorney-General Black nominated Secretary of State in place of Lewis Cass, resigned.
-A meeting of members of the Georgia Legisla ture favoring co-operation, and urging a Convention of Southern States desirous of co-operating. An address issued to the people of South Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi, and Florida, signed by 52 members of the Legislature.
Dec. 17.-South Carolina Convention of Delegates assembles in Convention. General Jamison elected President. Adjourned to Charleston.
Governor of South Carolina.
Dec. 18.-Mr. Crittenden introduces into the United States Senate, Resolutions of Compromise and settlement of differences between the Slave and Free States. The bill, as introduced, proposes: To renew the Missouri Compromise Line; prohibiting Slavery in the Territory north of 36 deg. 30 min., and protecting it South of that latitude; and for the
Dec. 9.-Gov. Brown of Georgia publishes a letter admission of new States with or without Slavery, as favoring immediate secession.
Dec. 10.-Howell Cobb, Secretary of the Treasury, resigns his seat in the Cabinet. Mr. Toucey, Secretary of the Navy, acts in his stead, ad interim.
-United States Senator Clay, of Alabama, resigns his seat in the United States Senate after March 4th, 1861.
-It is divulged that the Democratic members of Congress from the North-Western States have held several conferences. They take the position that the Union cannot be dissolved peaceably; that the North-West will, under no circumstances, consent to be cut off from the Gulf of Mexico and the City of New York; that the Government, whatever may be its faults, is of inestimable value.
-Extra Session of Louisiana Legislature meets. The Governor recommends a State Convention. Convention ordered--an election of delegates to be held Jan. 23. Legislature adjourned Dec. 12th. A military bill was passed, appropriating $500,000 to arm the State for defence, and provisions made for military organization and administration.
their Constitutions shall provide: to prohibit the abolition of Slavery by Congress in the States: to prohibit its abolition in the District of Columbia so long as it exists either in Virginia or Maryland: to permit the transportation of slaves in any of the States by land or water: to provide for the payment of fugitive slaves, when rescued to repeal one obnoxious feature of the Fugitive Slave Law-the inequality of the fee to the Commissioner-and also to ask the repeal of all the Personal Liberty bills in the Northern States. These concessions are to be submitted to the people in the form of amendments to the Constitution, and if they are carried they are to be changed by no future amendments.
Dec. 18-19.-Andrew Johnson, United States Senator from Tennessee, speaks on the resolutions propos ing amendments to the Constitution. He denies the right of secession, and calls upon the President to enforce the laws regardless of consequences. Taking up arms to resist the Federal laws he pronounces
Dec. 19.-Governor Hicks, of Maryland, declines to receive the Commissioner from Mississippi. He vindicates the course by expressing strong Union
Dec. 12.-Assistant Secretary of State, Trescott, sentiments. resigns.
-Mr. Philip Frank Thomas, of Maryland, Commissioner of Patents, is nominated Secretary of the Treasury, vice Cobb, resigned.
Dec. 13.-Immense Union demonstration in Philadelphia, by proclamation of the Mayor.
-Exciting session of the Cabinet in regard to the re-enforcement of Fort Moultrie, in Charleston harbor. The President opposed its re-enforcement as impolitic, saying he had assurances that the fort would not be attacked if no re-enforcements were attempted. Mr. Cass, Secretary of State, and Mr. Toucey, Secretary of the Navy, both strenuously
-The Commissioner of Mississippi to Maryland addresses a large meeting in Baltimore, advising cooperation on the part of the people of Maryland in the secession movement.
Dec. 20.-The Ordinance of Secession passes the South Carolina Convention of Delegates unanimously. The announcement is received by the people of Charleston with exciting manifestations of delight. The news throughout the North excites comparatively little remark.
-The Methodist Conference of South Carolina passes resolutions favoring secession.
-Immense receipts of specie in New York. Nearly
six millions of dollars in coin received during the week.
--Great demonstrations of enthusiasm throughout the Cotton States over South Carolina secession. In the leading cities of these States salutes were fired, Palmetto and State flags were displayed, bells were rung, and large meetings of citizens were held. No Union sentiment appeared. No Stars and Stripes flags to be seen. Salutes were also fired in many cities of the Border Slave States.
Dec. 21,-As indicative of the course the Republican members of Congress are to pursue in regard to compromise measures, the speech of Senator Wade, of Ohio, before the Senate Select Committee of Thirteen, on the Crisis, is the first declaratory expression. It took ground against any amendments of the Constitution, and generally expressed opposition to compromises which looked to giving slavery any constitutional protection or recognition. He said Mr. Lincoln was constitutionally elected and should be constitutionally inaugurated.
-Judge Douglas made important statements before the Senate Select Committee of Thirteen. He is reported as saying, "that he was ready now to unite in recommending such amendments to the Constitution as will take the Slavery question out of Congress. In view of the dangers which threaten the Republic with disunion, revolution, and civil war, he was prepared to act upon the matters in controversy without any regard to his previous action, and as if he had never made a speech or given a vote on the subject."
Dec. 22. The North Carolina Legislature adjourned to January 7th. The bill to arm the State failed to pass the House.
with the United States, leave Charleston for Washington.
-Gov. Moore convenes the Legislature of Alabama for January 14th, to provide for any emergency that may arise from the action of the Convention, which meets January 7th.
Dec. 25.-Among other important transactions of the South Carolina Convention was the reception of three resolutions from the Committee on Relations with the Slaveholding States of North America. The first resolution provides that the Convention appoint Commissioners to proceed to each Slaveholding State that may assemble in Convention, for the purpose of laying before them the ordinance of secession and respectfully to invite their co-operation in forming a Southern Confederacy. The second resolution authorises the said Commissioners to submit the Federal Constitution as the basis for a provisional Government for such States as shall have withdrawn from the connection with the Government of the United States of North America. The third resolu tion provides that the said Commissioners be authorized to invite seceding States to meet in convention at such a time and place as may be agreed upon for the purpose of forming a permanent Government for these States. All of which were acted upon affirmatively, after considerable discussion. They are regarded as having been arranged by the secession leaders, long since, and look to a co-operative union among the slave seceding States.
Dec. 26.-The three South Carolina Commissioners, viz.: Messrs. R. W. Barnwell, James L. Orr, and ExGov. Adams arrive in Washington.
-A resolution offered in the South Carolina Convention, that the Governor be requested to commu.
--Caleb Cushing, special messenger of the Presi-nicate to the Convention in secret session, any infordent to South Carolina, to induce the postponement of the threatened attack upon Fort Sumter, returns and reports disparagingly for peace. He has no hones of any arrangement of the pending differences. A Cabinet meeting was called.
Dec. 23.-Intense excitement in Washington, consequent upon the discovery of a heavy defalcation in the Department of the Interior, by abstraction of bonds and coupons belonging to the Indian Trust Fund. The amount abstracted is confessed by Godard Bailey, the guilty clerk, to have been $830,000. Mr. Floyd, Secretary of War, is said to be deeply
implicated by the revelations made.
Dec. 24.-The Speaker of the House directs the names of the "withdrawn" South Carolina members to be retained on the roll and to be regularly called. -Great excitement in Pittsburg in consequence of orders being given to ship, from the Alleghany Arsenal, 78 ten and eight-inch columbiads to Fort Newport, near Galveston, and 48 to Ship Island, near Balize, at the mouth of the Mississippi-both unfinished forts. The people regard the order as designed to strip the Arsenal in order to place the heavy guns in the hands of the enemies of the Government and will oppose their removal by force.
-The South Carolina Convention adopts a "Declaration of Immediate Causes which Justified the Secession of South Carolina from the Union."
-The Special Commissioners, appointed by the South Carolina Convention to negotiate a settlement of differences and a treaty of amity and commerce
mation he possesses in reference to the condition of Forts Moultrie and Sumter, and Castle Pinckney, the number of guns in each, the number of workmen and kind of labor employed, the number of soldiers in each, and what additions, if any, have been made since the 20th inst.; also, whether any assurance has been given that the forts will not be re-enforced, and gulations have been made, if any, in reference to the if so, to what extent; also, what police or other redefenses of the harbor of Charleston, the coast and the State.
Gov. Houston will convene an extra session of the
-It is now announced by advices from Texas, that
Texas Legislature on the 21st of January, to consider the present crisis. The Convention of the people will be held on the 28th of January. The secession element is rapidly gaining the ascendancy. It will carry all before it in the Convention.
-Major Anderson commences the evacuation of Fort Moultrie at night.
Dec. 27.-Gov. Magoffin calls an extra session of 17th, to consider the distracted state of the country. the Kentucky State Legislature to assemble Jan.
-It is ascertained at Charleston that Fort Moultrie is evacuated. The evacuation took place during the night, Major Anderson transferring his entire force (about eighty men) with stores, munitions, movable arms, &c., to Fort Sumter. Most intense excitement in consequence throughout the entire country. The military in Charleston ordered out. Troops tendered by Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and Florida.