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Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1856, by
DIX, EDWARDS & CO.,
In the Clerk's Office of the District Court for the Southern District of New York.
MILLER & HOLMAN,
Printers and Stereotypers, N. Y.
VIII. The Third Missouri Struggle
Missouri Constitution respecting negroes-Mr. Clay's second Compromise adopted.
XI. The Wilmot Proviso
Proceedings and Votes in Congress thereon,
Gen. Cass's letter to A. O. P. Nicholson,
XII. Oregon (Bill to organize as a Territory)
Ordinance of '87 applied-Mr. Douglas moves to extend Missouri Compromise Line to
President Taylor's Message-Gen. Houston's Resolves-Mr. Clay's-Mr. John Bell's-
The Acts of 1850 concerning California, Texas, New-Mexico, and Utah,
Mr. Collamer's Minority Report,
The Kansas Investigation-Mr. Dunn's proposition-Yeas and Nays thereon,
HISTORY OF THE QUESTION
MAINLY BY DOCUMENTS.
SLAVERY IN THE COLONIES.
HUMAN Slavery, as it existed in the pagan world, and especially in the infancy, vigor, and decline of Greek and Roman civilization, gradually died out in the advancing light of Christianity. When Columbus opened the New World to European enterprise and settlement, the serfdom of Russia and Hungary, and the mild bondage of Turkey -each rather an Asiatic or Scythian than a European power-were the last remaining vestiges of a system which had pervaded, and mastered, and ruined, the vast empires of Alexander and the Caesars. The few ignorant and feeble dependents elsewhere held in virtual bondage by force rather of custom than of positive law, serve rather to establish than disprove this general statement.
Africa, whom their eternal wars and marauding invasions were constantly exposing to captivity and sale as prisoners of war, and who, as a race, might be said to be inured to the hardships and degradations of Slavery by an immemorial experience. The sugges tion was unhappily approved, and the woes and miseries of the few remaining Aborigines of the islands known to us as "West Indies," were inconsiderably prolonged by exposing the whole continent for unnumbered generations to the evils and horrors of African slavery. The author lived to perceive and deplore the consequences of his expedient.
The sanction of the Pope having been obtained for the African slave-trade by representations which invested it with a look of philanthropy, Spanish and Portuguese mercantile avarice was readily enlisted in its prosecution, and the whole continent, north and south of the tropics, became a slave-mart before the close of the sixteenth century.
Lust of gold and power was the main impulse of Spanish migration to the marvelous regions beyond the Atlantic. And the soft Holland, a comparatively new and Proand timid Aborigines of tropical America, testant state, unable to shelter itself from the especially of its islands, were first compelled reproaches of conscience and humanity beto surrender whatever they possessed of the hind a Papal bull, entered upon the new trafprecious metals to the imperious and grasp-fic more tardily; but its profits soon overbore ing strangers; next forced to disclose to those strangers the sources whence they were most readily obtained; and finally driven to toil and delve for more, wherever power and greed supposed they might most readily be obtained. From this point, the transition to general enslavement was ready and rapid. The gentle and indolent natives, unaccustomed to rugged, persistent toil, and revolting at the harsh and brutal severity of their Christian masters, had but one unfailing resource-death. Through privation, hardship, exposure, fatigue and despair, they drooped and died, until millions were reduced to a few miserable thousands within the first century of Spanish rule in America.
all scruples, and British merchants were not proof against the glittering evidences of their success. But the first slave-ship that ever entered a North American port for the sale of its human merchandise, was a Dutch trading-vessel which landed twenty negro bondmen at Jamestown, the nucleus of Virginia, almost simultaneously with the landing of the Pilgrims of the Mayflower on Plymouth rock, Dec. 22d, 1620.
The Dutch slaver had chosen his market with sagacity. Virginia was settled by CAVALIERS-gentlemen-adventurers aspiring to live by their own wits and other men's labor -with the necessary complement of followers and servitors. Few of her pioneers cherA humane and observant priest (Las Casas,) ished any earnest liking for downright, perwitnessing these cruelties and sufferings, was sistent, muscular exertion; yet some exmoved by pity to devise a plan for their ter- ertion was urgently required to clear away mination. He suggested and urged the poli- the heavy forest which all but covered the cy of substituting for these feeble and perish- soil of the infant colony, and grow the Toing "Indians" the hardier natives of Western | bacco which easily became its staple export,