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beginning of it-from the date of the Constitution and up to 1820, never, in a single instance, exercised the power of excluding the emigration of slaves from any of the States of this Union to the common territory."

That is practical. It applied to every inch of the public lands from the lakes to Florida. It did not stand, in the language of the gentleman from Georgia," on the principle of a division of the Territory." It gave all to freedom, for that was the impulse and the end-the beginning and the final cause of the revolutionary struggle. It went further, and organized them as States, and said slavery should not exist there, when organ

ized into States.

I venture to confront it, and, in no offensive manner, to contradict its historical accuracy. I deny it altogether. I aver, on the other hand, that in theory and practice, by reason, usage, and precedent, under the Confederation and under the Constitution, from the beginning of the Government to the passage of the Nebraska act, the This section failed, from the accidental absence power of Congress to legislate for the Territories of one New Jersey member, seven States being on all subjects, including the particular subject necessary to pass it. On what triffes great events above named, has been asserted and maintained. depend! If it had passed, the Alleghanies would This is a broad proposition, but its truth is im-have been the western wall of slavery. pregnable. And when government has been maintained through the Territorial Legislatures, business; and the ordinance of 1784, passed on The government of Territories was then a new or through officers of territorial creation, it has the very day of the Virginia grant, and when it been by the express authority of Congress, and was supposed it would include Kentucky, was by the use of its own delegated power, which it too clumsy to work well. This led afterwards could take away at pleasure. Congress has to the celebrated ordinance of July 13, 1787, the always used this power directly or by indirection. corner-stone of the prosperity and happiness of It is evinced in our legislation, where its instances the Northwest. It differed from the former, in are strewn all over its pages-it has been main-making the expulsion of slavery immediate, and tained in judicial decisions of all our courts, State in being limited to the country between the Ohio and Federal, from the highest to the lowest. It and Mississippi. It was reported by a comhas been maintained in the executive administration of our laws. It is the salient fact of the his-mittee, consisting of Carrington and Richard H. tory of our Territories, standing out distinguished, like a promontory. And I challenge the proof of the gentleman's proposition by examples. At least, let history be spared from wrong for mere party objects.

I do not mean to go over the large range of proofs that have been so often told and illustrated, but to allude only to the less familiar history of my own State.

Lee of Virginia; Nathan Dane of Massachusetts; Smith of New York; and Keen of South Carolina,-names familiar to us as household words. It was reported in the language of the former act of Jefferson. It was passed by the vote of all the States, and of all the delegates from all the States but one from New York. It again prohibited slavery forever from what was then the whole national domain-and not only while the Northwest remained a Territory, but after it should be organized into States. It did more. The prohibition entered into territory where slavery was then lawful, and where it in fact existed, and expelled it violently from the ter

Sir, that original Abolitionist, Thomas Jefferson, who, not content with stirring up rebellion against King George, and setting the country in a blaze, went abroad publishing what are now considered fanatical sentiments of human freedom and progress, for which, if he were in Kan-ritory. It disdained the existing property in husas to-day, he might enjoy a prison, with an iron, ball and chain fastened to him, and a Bible to improve his morals by, according to the second and fifth sections of chapter twenty-two of that amiable code of laws-Thomas Jefferson inaugurated legislation to exclude slavery from the public lands. Restriction and intervention began with him. The gentleman from Georgia, while reading the Holmes letter, which I shall hereafter

refer to, said he wanted from Jefferson no abstraction, but something practical. Here it is. On the 1st of March, 1784, Jefferson, as chairman of a committee to devise a scheme of government, in the language of the Journal, for "the transmontane half of the American Republic," comprehending the region beyond the mountains, from the north boundary of Florida to the lakes and the Mississippi, reported a bill to the Congress of the Confederation, subdividing it into seventeen States, and containing the following


"Eighth. That after the year 1800 of the Christian era there shall be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude in any of the said States, otherwise than in the punishment of crimes of which the party shall have been duly convieted to have been personally guilty."

man suffering and human life. It was ignorant of that new equality of the States, by which a small class of patriarchs, whether from Utah or South Carolina, shall occupy the public lands, convenience and expulsion of everybody else, filled with natural gifts fit for freemen, to the inThis kind of republicanism was then national. Every State was for it. Can the gentleman from Georgia tell the time when it became sectional, or how it became so, or who made it so? This first child of freedom was born just as it was, wholly free from the common will of the whole


But it will be answered, that this ordinance was passed by the Congress of the Confederation, and before the Constitution. Grant it. This makes the case much stronger. The Congress of the Confederation, like the present Congress under the Constitution, could only use powers not permitted by the Constitution. That Conexpressly granted. This Congress can do nothing gress could do nothing not permitted by the Articles of Confederation. But, by the Articles of Confederation, no power of any kind, in express words, was granted to acquire or to go▾ern territory. It was attempted to derive it in the

power to collect revenue, and in the power to regulate intercourse with the Indian tribes. But this was abandoned, and the right was rested, where the Supreme Court of the United States now rests it, under the Constitution, on the better principle, that the owner of the territory, of course, has the right to govern it for all purposes.

If, therefore, the Congress of the Confederation, when the power to govern the Territories was, terms, so doubtful, could, under that instrument, enter that Territory, expel slavery and substitute freedom, much more can it be done under the Constitution of the United States, which conveys express power to Congress to make all needful rules and regulations for the Territories and other property of the United States.

It deserves, too, to be remembered; that the Congress that passed this ordinance, and the convention that framed the Constitution, sat at the same time, and that many of the members belonged to both, and knew very well, nobody better, what powers the Articles of Confederation lacked, and what powers it was necessary that the Constitution should have.

to have effect; and the object of the law was that it might continue to have full effect. Sir, Washington and the first Congress of the Constitution believed that it was a constitutional right and duty to expel slavery from the Territories, and maintain it so forever. This is what republicanism claims. Washington baptized our creed, and made it national. The gentleman from Georgia can see something practical in this, and will not attempt to wrestle with this high authority.

Ohio being about to be admitted into the Union, Congress, on the 7th of May, 1800, erected Indiana Territory. It provided for it "a territorial government, in all respects similar to that provided by the ordinance of Congress, passed on the 13th of July, 1787, for the government of the territory of the United States northwest of the river Ohio." Thus Congress again asserted its power to legislate to every extent on this vexed question for her Territories. President Adams approved the act, and Jefferson executed it.

It was in April, 1802, that Congress passed an act authorizing the people of Ohio to form a State But this doubt was very soon put to rest. The constitution. The convention met at Chillicothe first Congress under the Constitution, composed in November. Governor St. Clair addressed it. in part of the men who had framed that instru- Here squatter sovereignty began, and first lifted ment, met, and, on the 7th of August, 1789, up its head. What became of the head will be reenacted the ordinance of 1787, without a divis- seen in the sequel. Mr. Douglas and Mr. Dickion. Washington, who had been the president inson may end their rivalry for this patent. Govof the convention that framed the Constitution, ernor St. Clair was the inventor and discoverer, approved the act. Who knew better the signifi-and the time for it to be of profit to any one is cancy of that instrument than those who made it? than he-I express it all when I speak the name of Washington-who, in presiding at the work of its creation, gave the Union hopes of a duration more lasting than brass or marble? Washington, by this act, gave the consent of his judgment that it was constitutional and right, and consistent with the genius of American government, to expel the political wanton, slavery, from the national territory.

The preamble of that act is worthy of notice: "Whereas, in order that the ordinance of the United States, in Congress assembled, for the government of the territory northwest of the river Ohio, may continue to have full effect, it is requisite that certain provisions should be made, so as to adapt the same to the present Constitution of the United States. Be it enacted," &c.

The act then provides that the Governor of the Northwest Territory shall communicate to the Congress of the United States the information required under the ordinance of 1787, and that then the President shall appoint officers, &c. Mr. Pierce, in his late message, says that this ordinance was repealed on the adoption of the Constitution. This is worthy of the President's ability at constitutional construction. If the ordinance was repealed, and the government dissolved, what Governor was there to report any thing? What was he Governor of? If the ordinance was repealed, and this law did not reenact it, by what law was the Northwest Territory governed, until the establishment of Ohio as a State on the 30th of April, 1802, for there was no other law? This modern executive opinion is too weak for controversy. The very preamble of this law states the ordinance to be continuing

run out. He then said:

"The people of the Territory require no act of Congress to authorize them to call a convention and form a constitution, and the act of Congress is a nullity. For all internal

affairs we have a complete Legislature of our own, and in would be bound by an edict of the First Consul of France.

them we are no more bound by an act of Congress than we

The five thousand persons that were let off to the Indiana Territory have been divested of their rights. We have the means in our hands to bring Congress to reason, if we should be forced to use them."

In consequence of being ignorant of what is known to Mr. Pierce, and every one who takes political communion with him, to be the sovereign rights of the people of the Territories, Mr. Jefferson simply crossed his legs, as he was in the habit of doing when he took a decided resolution, and directed Mr. Madison, his Secretary of State, to write the following letter:

"SIR: The President, observing in an address lately delivered by you to the convention held at Chillicothe, an intemperance and indecorum of language towards the Legislature of the United States, and a disorganizing spirit and tendency of very evil example, and grossly violating the rules of conduct enjoined by your publie station, determines that your commission of Governor of the Northwestern Territory shall cease on the receipt of this letter. "I am, &c., JAMES MADISON. "ARTHUR ST. CLAIR, Esq., Chillicothe."

The putting the Federal head of Arthur St. Clair in a charger-the Federal head out of which squatter sovereignty was born, and where it died -was a piece of somewhat practical conduct in Madison and Jefferson.

Illinois Territory was created by act of Congress, February 3, 1809. The fourth section applied to it the ordinance of 1787. This was approved by Madison. The same had been done

for Michigan by the act of January 11, 1805, approved by Jefferson. The same was afterwards done for Wisconsin by the twelfth section of the act of April 20, 1836, approved by Jack


But Jefferson and Madison at that time carried the doctrine of the power of the Constitution over the subject of slavery in the new States that had been formed out of the public domain, to a greater extent than is now generally maintained. Jefferson approved the act of Congress authorizing Ohio to form a State constitution; Madison the act of April 19, 1816, conferring the same power on the people of Indiana; but both these acts forbade them from adopting constitutions repugnant to the ordinance of 1787. They were forbidden from incorporating slavery, even when clothed with the full dignity and authority of States.

I have here passed by an extraordinary example of the assertion of this power by Congress, and now return to take it up. The first population of Indiana Territory was drawn to it by the Ohio river, and principally from the neighboring States of Virginia and Kentucky. Their characteristic institution was excluded by the ordinance of 1787, and having then, in the infancy of constitutional construction, no notion of their absolute rights to do what they pleased, and especially on that subject, applied to Congress for its suspension. A territorial convention of elected delegates assembled at Vincennes, and was presided over by General Harrison, the Father of the Northwest. It will be seen that it differs from the opinion of President Pierce, as to the ordinance of 1787 being then repealed. The petition to Congress then agreed upon, now time-worn and dilapidated, I have obtained from its slumbers in the Archives in this Capitol, and, though somewhat lengthy, incorporate here:

The memorial and petition of the inhabitants of the Indiana Territory respectfully sheweth :

That nine tenths of your memorialists, being of opinion that the sixth article of compact contained in the ordinance for the government of the Territory, has been extremely prejudicial to their interest and welfare, requested the Governor, by petitions from each of the several counties, to call a general convention of the Territory, for the purpose of taking the sense of the whole people, by their Representatives, on a subject to them so interesting, and of afterwards taking such measures as to them might seem meet, by petition to your honorable bodies, not only for obtaining the repeal or suspension of the said article of compact, but also for that of representing and petitioning for the passage of such other laws as would, in the opinion of the convention, be conducive to the general welfare, population, and happiness of this distant and unrepresented portion of the United States.

This convention is now sitting at Vincennes, and have agreed to make the following representation to the Con gress of the United States, not in the least doubting but that everything they can desire, (not prejudicial to the Constitution or the interest of the General Government,) will readily be granted them.

The sixth article of compact between the United States and the people of the Territory, which declares there shall be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude in it, has prevented the country from populating, and been the reason of driving many valuable citizens, possessing slaves, to the Spanish side of the Mississippi, most of whom, but for the prohibition contained in the ordinance, would have settled in this Territory; and the consequences of keeping that prohibition in force will be that of obliging the numerous class of citizens disposed to emigrate to seek an asylum in

that country where they can be permitted to enjoy their property.

Your memorialists, however, and the people they repre sent, do not wish for a repeal of this article entirely, but that it may be suspended for the term of ten years, and then to be again in force; but that the slaves brought into the Territory during the continuance of this supension, and their progeny, may be considered and continued in the same state of servitude as if they had remained in those parts of the United States where slavery is permitted, and from whence they may have been removed.

Several persons (as your memorialists are in med) having settled on the public lands in this Territory, with the intention of purchasing the same when offered for sale by the United States, are fearful that advantage may be taken of their improvements to enhance the price: your petitioners therefore pray that a law may be passed for their relief, giving the right of preemption to all those who may have so settled on the public lands; and also, as one of the more sure means as well of populating the country as of enhancing the value of the United States lands remaining undisposed of in the Territory, they further pray that provisions may be made in the said law for securing a certain part of every section of such public land to those who will actually settle on and cultivate the same.

The United States having pledged themselves, in the ordinance, that schools and the means of education should be forever encouraged, and having, in all the sales of land heretofore made, reserved considerable portions thereof for that purpose, your memorialists therefore humbly pray that a law may be passed making a grant of lands for the sup port of schools and seminaries of learning to the several

settlements of the Territory, to wit: the two settlements on the Illinois, the settlement of Vincennes, and that of Clark's grant, near the rapids of the Ohio.

Your memorialists further show, that they view that part of the ordinance for the government of the Territory which requires a freehold qualification in fifty acres of land, as elector for members to the General Assembly, as subversive of the liberties of the citizens, and tending to throw top great weight in the scale of wealth. They, therefore, pray that the right of suffrage (in voting for representatives to the General Assembly) may be extended to the free male inhabitants of the Territory, of the age of twentyone years and upwards, but under such regulations and restrictions as to you, in your wisdom, may seem proper.

Since the erection of the Territory into a separate gov ernment, the attorney general thereof has prosecuted not only for offenses cominitted against the municipal laws of the Territory, but also against the laws of the United States, and has been obliged at three different times to travel one hundred and sixty miles from his home, the seat of the territorial government, to prosecute offenders against those laws, and yet he has received no compensation for his services, either from the United States or the Territory, nor is it probable that the Territory can afford to allow him any salary for any of his future services.

Your memorialists, therefore, pray that a law may be passed allowing a salary to the attorney general of the Territory, adequate to the important services which are rendered by that officer to the United States as well as to the Territory.

Your memorialists are well aware that the consideration of the numerous objects contemplated by this memorial will require more time than can well be spared from the important and general concerns of the Union, but when they reflect upon their neglected and orphan-like situation, they are emboldened to hope that their wants and wishes will meet with all the indulgence and attention necessary to secure to them the relief which is so essential to their welfare and happiness.

Done at Vincennes, in the Indiana Territory, the 28th day of December, in the year of our Lord 1802, and of the Independence of the United States, the twenty-seventh. By order of the convention:

WILLIAM HENRY HARRISON, President, and Delegate from the county of Knoz. Test: JOHN RICE JONES, Secretary.

What a picture of the past so recent as to be in the memory of living man! A citizen of that State may well feel emotions of just pride at its benevolence and wisdom. It is witnessed by the firm and honest hand of President Harrison.


is dated in the twenty-seventh year of independence, of which, even on the frontier, its people had a share. It acknowledged its dependence on the authority of Congress. It foreshadows the beneficial law of preemption. It foreshadows to the settler the homestead bill, and his own inalienable home on the public lands. It testifies of the value of knowledge and virtue, and of schools and seminaries for their diffusion. But all that broad domain, now occupied by six millions of people, filled with cities, villages, and fair fields, fruitful as Egypt, abounding in virtue, patriotism, and knowledge, bound together to each other and to the other States by bands of iron, and moving annually a commerce of seven hundred millions of dollars, and yet pursuing its career, foremost in the race, was then too poor to pay a lawyer. Congress listened to this respectful language of petition, and created a committee of singular merit to consider it. The report of the committee, concurred in by Congress, was made by John Randolph, Jr., of Virginia.

"That the rapid population of the State of Ohio sufficiently evinces, in the opinion of your committee, that the labor of slaves is not necessary to promote the growth and settlement of colonies in that region. That this labor, demonstrably the dearest of any, can only be employed to advantage in the cultivation of products more valuable than any known to that quarter of the United States. That the committee deem it highly dangerous and inexpedient to impair a provision wisely calculated to promote the happiness and prosperity of the north-western country, and to give strength and security to that extensive frontier. In the salutary

operation of this sagacious and benevolent restraint, it is believed that the inhabitants of Indiana will, at no very distant day, find ample remuneration for a temporary privation of labor and emigration."

Thus, in the language of the gentleman from Georgia, the fathers of the Republic did exercise "the power of excluding the migration of slaves from the States to the common Territory."

It has often been said, that the grant from Virginia required the exclusion of slavery in that Territory. This is an error. The grant was unreservedly of all right, title and claim, as well of soil as jurisdiction," and was wholly unfettered by any condition on the subject.

Indiana Territory then comprised all of the present states of Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin. Illinois and Wisconsin then formed two counties of the Territory, St. Clair and Randolph, with an official population in 1801 of four thousand three hundred and eleven, principally at Prairie du Chien, also, on the Illinois, and at Cahokia and Kaskaskia, descendants of the French explorers of the valley of the Mississippi, commencing with La Salle.

The infant people of Illinois then met in delegated convention. The convention occurred on the 25th of November, 1805. It was presided over by the venerable John Edgar. In the petition then adopted, which is now moldering in your archives, they describe themselves" as the people of the Illinois," they ask for "the erection of a colonial government on the Mississippi;" they allude to the struggle by which they themselves conquered the northwest territory into the Union; they say that the expense of such a government is trifling to so great a nation as this, and that by its weight it would "control and

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dissipate those hordes of restless adventurers, who, by penetrating into the illimitable regions of the West, might defy the national arm and commit the national peace. Among other things, they adopted the following resolution, making their own italics. Even they had not discovered that the ordinance of 1787 was repealed:

"And whereas the ordinance of 1787, for the government of this Territory, is respected by the people as the Constitution of their country, this committee entertain a hope that the General Government, after guarantying to the public the privileges in that ordinance contained, will not pass unnoticed the violation thereof, by the late act of the Legislature of this Territory, authorizing the unportation of slaves, and involuntary servitude for a long term of years.

"And although this committee entertain no doubt but spring to the growth of this country, they express the disthat the act in question will render service by adding a approbation of a people who never will consent to a violation of that ordinance for this privilege of slavery. When Congress shall deem a change of the ordinance expedient, they will cheerfully agree to the measure."

Such was squatter sovereignty in Illinois before the cradle of Senator DOUGLAS was rocked.

For the vindication of the honored history of Indiana and Illinois, I turn again with regret to the present Executive of Virginia, and the extravagant language of a special message of January 22d last, in which he refers to Virginia and her former sovereignty of the Northwest:

enough to pay officers and men to fight the armies of kings. "She was then sovereign of an eminent domain, ample

To cement the union of the States-to harmonize and strengthen their confederacy-she afterwards ceded, with more than generous devotion, the whole of her northwest territory to the General Government, reserving only what was called the Virginia military land district, between the Miami and Sciota rivers, in the State of Ohio. The last power on earth to question the substance or form of her pledges is the General Government, to which she has been so generous."

Without any motive to disparage the honor and patriotism of that illustrious old Commonwealth, I hold that Virginia had no property or right there, except in the reserve alluded to, and another, (Clark's grant,) omitted inadvertently, and this only by the permission and silence of Congress.

The facts are few. In 1609 King James created the Virginia company, with license to settle a colony in America between 340 and 450 of north latitude, extended west to the ocean. He afterwards gave two or three other charters, extending the privileges of the same company. In 1624 the validity of these charters was brought into law, and judicially denied. The Virginia company was dissolved. In 1625, after the invalidity of the previous charters had been decreed, Charles I. made proclamation of the fact, and declared Virginia to depend on himself for government. It was afterwards governed by royal commission. The lands were disposed of by the Crown. Maryland, North and South Carolina, and Georgia, were, by the same kingly authority, erected out of its limits. Conflicting grants within the same parallels of latitude were made to New York, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. western boundary of Virginia was fixed by the King in council at the Alleghanies.


For one hundred and fifty years Virginia was silent. But, in 1776, it claimed the rights of the charter of 1609. Maryland resisted this extraor

dinary assumption; North Carolina also resisted. Other States claimed the same territory, and for better reasons. Virginia carried it with a high hand, and opened a land office. Congress remonstrated. Settlers, under the authority of Virginia, went across the Ohio. Congress had them arrested and expelled. Virginia remonstrated. But Congress, by resolution, April 17, 1780, ordered that their officers should be supported in the act. The question of title to the Northwest was then referred to a committee of Congress. It reported November 3, 1781, and decided, that by the public acts of the other States, the title was in New York. Virginia then wanted a Federal guarantee to the territory southeast of the Ohio. The committee refused it on the ground "that large tracts west of the mountains had been sold by the King before the Revolution, and that in the year 1763 a very large part thereof was separated and appointed for a distinct government and colony by the King of Great Britain, with the knowledge and approbation of the government of Virginia," and that its western boundary had been otherwise declared. Congress not only denied her right to the Northwest, but to the country, also, on the southeast side of

the Ohio.

consistent practice of the Government, under the Confederation and under the Constitution, on the subject of the government of the Territories, and especially in restraint of slavery, up to the present Administration, that is now drawing to its end with such universal popularity and satisfaction. It has been the faith and works of Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, Jackson, and Harrison. Republicanism is content to wander with such guides. Nor have I been able to notice similar restraints and conditions imposed on the Mississippi Territory, on Louisiana, on Minnesota, and Iowa, and I think, with equal force on New Mexico and Utah; nor have I referred to the uniformity of judicial decisions, State and Federal, with which this necessary congressional power has been maintained. But the executive, judicial, and legislative history on this subject are parallels.

In answer to all this, the gentleman from Georgia refers to Madison's memorandum to Walsh, and Jefferson's letter to Holmes. Let it be noticed that this reference is made to imply that they thought Congress had no power on the subject of slavery in the Territories. Let it be noticed, too, that the point in dispute in that severe struggle that preceded the adoption of the Missouri compromise, was not of the power of Congress over the subject of slavery in the territories, but of its power to regulate the subject of slavery for a State at the time of its admission into the Union. The following extract from the memorandum to Mr. Walsh is, then, the refutation:

Such was the title of Virginia to the Northwest, based on a charter, judicially condemned, the condemnation silently agreed to for one hundred and fifty years, pretentiously revived during the Revolution as a bone of contention, denied by the Congress of the Revolution, and her title at length received, not because it conveyed any "The power, however, be its import what it may, is obright, but because it settled a pertinacious claim,viously limited to a Territory wifile remaining in that charand on the severe condition of leaving to Virginia all of Kentucky, the Miami grant and Clark's grant.

acter, as distinct from that of a State."

posing to exclude slavery from all territory. Following his footsteps, if no better pacific alternative is offered, we are preferred to escape geographical differences by maintaining this complete exclusion now.

The Holmes letter is a just condemnation of freedom entering into bargains and compounding The true glory of acquiring the Northwest Ter- felony with slavery by geographical partitions. ritory to the Union, much better than an exploded As applied to the admission of Missouri, then paper title, with the silent dust of one hundred applying for admission into the Union, which, and fifty years on it, belongs to the conquerors with the restriction, was the subject of that letter, of the British post of St. Vincent, on the Wabash, he questions its expediency, but does not deny February 24, 1779. That post was, except De- the power, but admits it by speaking of it as an troit, the only British garrison between the lakes "act of power." Jefferson avoided this geoand the gulf, and, strong itself, was more alarm-graphical difficulty in the act of 1748, by proing because it sent forth the savage incursions that so often made the western frontier red with the blood of its people, and lit up the midnight with the flames of their dwellings. Vincennes was won by a force composed principally of the colonists of Indiana and Illinois-of Kaskaskia and the French settlements on the Wabash, making a winter march in order to surprise it, wading miles of freezing rivers, and exhausted by fatigue and hunger. And, although ardent Virginians, recruited into Clark's regiment after its return to the south side of the Ohio, and after the victory was won, and no service of danger was to be done, managed to engross the principal part of the liberal gift of one hundred and fifty thousand acres of land for this distinguished service, let the honest fame of the conquest rest where it belongs. I have referred briefly to these facts, because, not content with the profits of the assertion of this unparalleled claim, Virginia now maintains a historic title to gratitude.

I have thus referred to the immemorial and

This question is vital to the national peace, and prosperity, and honor. Its importance gives it a controlling position. It is now to be heard and submitted to the tribunal of the people. Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Frémont are representative men. The former has been remarkable for the convenient variety of his opinions. He may be characterized as holding opinions of accommodation, not so much his own and for personal use, as to oblige others. He is always with the flock, but always brings up behind. He does not lead the van, but journeys in the rear with the provision wagons. Honored in private life, he allows himself to be the idol of a party of great historic renown, now recruited and principally composed of its hereditary enemies, debauched from its purity and heretical to its faith. He is remarkable

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