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the Government from their hands. Missouri votes elected the present body of men who insult public intelligence and popular rights by styling themselves the Legislature of Kansas.' This body of men are helping themselves to fat speculations by locating the seat of Government,' and getting town lots for their votes. They are passing laws disfranchising all the citizens of Kansas who do not believe Negro Slavery to be a Christian institution and a national blessing. They are proposing to punish with imprisonment the utterance of views inconsistent with their own; and they are trying to perpetuate their preposterous and infernal tyranny by appointing, for a term of years, creatures of their own, as commissioners in every county, to lay and collect taxes, and see that the laws they are passing are faithfully executed. Has this age anything to compare with these acts in audacity ?

9. In harmony with all these is the authoritative declaration. of Governor Reeder, in a speech addressed to his neighbors, at Easton, Pennsylvania, at the end of April, 1855, and immediately afterwards published in the Washington Union. Here

it is:

“It was, indeed, too true that Kansas had been invaded, conquered, subjugated, by an armed force from beyond her borders, led on by a fanatical spirit, trampling under foot the principles of the Kansas bill and the right of suffrage."

10. And in similar harmony is the complaint of the people of Kansas, in a public meeting at Big Springs, on the 5th September, 1855, embodied in these words:

“Resolved, That the body of men who, for the last two months, have been passing laws for the people of our Territory, moved, counselled, and dictated to, by the demagogues of Missouri, are to us a foreign body, representing only the lawless invaders who elected them, and not the people of the Territory; that we repudiate their action as the monstrous consummation of an act of violence, usurpation, and fraud, unparalleled in the history of the Union, and worthy only of men unfitted for the duties and regardless of the responsibilities of Republicans.".

11. And, finally, by the official minutes which have been laid on our table by the President, the invasion which ended in

the usurpation, is clearly established; but the effect of this testimony has been so amply exposed by the senator from Vermont [Mr. COLLAMER], in his able and indefatigable argument, that I content myself with simply referring to it.

On this cumulative, irresistible evidence, in concurrence with the antecedent history, I rest. And yet, senators here have argued that this cannot be so; precisely as the conspiracy of Catiline was doubted in the Roman Senate. Nonnulli sunt in hoc ordine, qui aut ea, quæ imminent, non videant; aut ea, quæ vident, dissimulent; qui spem Catilina mollibus sententiis aluerunt, conjurationemque nascentem non credendo corroboraverunt. As I listened to the senator from Illinois, while he painfully strove to show that there was no usurpation, I was reminded of the effort by a distinguished logician, in a much-admired argument, to prove that Napoleon Bonaparte never existed. And permit me to say that the fact of his existence is not placed more completely above doubt than the fact of this usurpation. This I assert on the proofs already presented. But confirmation comes almost while I speak. The columns of the public press are now daily filled with testimony, solemnly taken before the committee of Congress in Kansas, which shows, in awful light, the violence ending in the Usurpation. Of this I may speak on some other occasion. Meanwhile I proceed with the development of the Crime.

The usurping Legislature assembled at the appointed place in the interior, and then, at once, in opposition to the veto of the Governor, by a majority of two thirds, removed to the Shawnee Mission, a place in most convenient proximity to the Missouri borderers, by whom it had been constituted, and whose tyrannical agent it was. The statutes of Missouri, in all their text, with their divisions and subdivisions, were adopted bodily, and with such little local adaptation that the word "State" in the original is not even changed to "Territory," but is left to be corrected by an explanatory act. But all this general legis

lation was entirely subordinate to the special act, entitled "An Act to punish Offences against Slave Property," in which the One Idea, that provoked this whole conspiracy, is, at last, embodied in legislative form, and human slavery openly recognized on free soil, under the sanction of pretended law. This act of thirteen sections is in itself a Dance of Death. But its complex completeness of wickedness, without a parallel, may be partially conceived, when it is understood that in three sections. only of it is the penalty of death denounced no less than fortyeight different times, by as many changes of language, against the heinous offence, described in forty-eight different ways, of interfering with what does not exist in that Territory, and under the constitution cannot exist there, I mean property in human flesh. Thus is Liberty sacrificed to Slavery, and Death summoned to sit at the gates as guardian of the Wrong. But the work of Usurpation was not perfected even yet. It had already cost too much to be left at any hazard.

"To be thus was nothing;

But to be safely thus ! "

Such was the object. And this could not be, except by the entire prostration of all the safeguards of human rights. The liberty of speech, which is the very breath of a republic; the press, which is the terror of wrong-doers; the bar, through which the oppressed beards the arrogance of law; the jury, by which right is vindicated; all these must be struck down, while officers are provided, in all places, ready to be the tools of this tyranny; and then, to obtain final assurance that their crime was secure, the whole Usurpation, stretching over the Territory, must be fastened and riveted by legislative bolts, spikes, and screws, so as to defy all effort at change through the ordinary forms of law. To this work, in its various parts, were bent the subtlest energies; and never, from Tubal Cain to this

hour, was any fabric forged with more desperate skill and completeness.


Mark, sir, three different legislative enactments, which constitute part of this work. First, according to one act, all who deny, by spoken or written word, "the right of persons to hold slaves in this territory," are denounced as felons, to be punished by imprisonment at hard labor, for a term not less than two years; it may be for life. And, to show the extravagance of this injustice, it has been well put by the senator from Vermont [Mr. COLLAMER], that should the senator from Michigan [Mr. CASS], who believes that Slavery cannot exist in a Territory, unless introduced by express legislative acts, venture there with his moderate opinions, his doom must be that of a felon ! To this extent are the great liberties of speech and of the press subverted. Secondly, by another act, entitled "An Act concerning Attorneys-at-Law," no person can practise as attorney, unless he shall obtain a license from the Territorial courts, which, of course, a tyrannical discretion will be free to deny; and, after obtaining such license, he is constrained to take an oath, not only "to support" the constitution of the United States, but also "to support and sustain "-mark here the reduplication!--the Territorial act, and the Fugitive Slave Bill; thus erecting a test for the function of the bar, calculated to exclude citizens who honestly regard that latter legislative enormity as unfit to be obeyed. And, thirdly, by another act, entitled "An Act concerning Jurors," all persons "conscientiously opposed to holding slaves," or "not admitting the right to hold slaves in the Territory," are excluded from the jury on every question, civil or criminal, arising out of asserted slave property; while, in all cases, the summoning of the jury is left without one word of restraint to "the marshal, sheriff, or other officer," who are thus free to pack it according to their tyrannical discretion.

For the ready enforcement of all statutes against Human Freedom, the President had already furnished a powerful quota

of officers, in the Governor, Chief Justice, Judges, Secretary, Attorney, and Marshal. The Legislature completed this part of the work, by constituting, in each county, a Board of Commissioners, composed of two persons, associated with the Probate Judge, whose duty it is "to appoint a county treasurer, coroner, justices of the peace, constables, and all other officers provided for by law," and then proceeded to the choice of this very Board; thus delegating and diffusing their usurped power, and tyrannically imposing upon the Territory a crowd of officers in whose appointment the people have had no voice, directly or indirectly.

And still the final inexorable work remained. A Legislature, renovated in both branches, could not assemble until 1858, so that, during this long intermediate period, this whole system must continue in the likeness of law, unless overturned by the Federal Government, or, in default of such interposition, by a generous uprising of an oppressed people. But it was necessary to guard against the possibility of change, even tardily, at a future election; and this was done by two different acts; under the first of which, all who will not take the oath to support the Fugitive Slave Bill are excluded from the elective franchise; and under the second of which, all others are entitled to vote who shall tender a tax of one dollar to the Sheriff on the day of election; thus, by provision of Territorial law, disfranchising all opposed to Slavery, and at the same time opening the door to the votes of the invaders; by an unconstitutional shibboleth, excluding from the polls the mass of actual settlers, and by making the franchise depend upon a petty tax only, admitting to the polls the mass of borderers from Missouri. Thus, by tyrannical forethought, the Usurpation not only fortified all that it did, but assumed a self-perpetuating


Thus was the Crime consummated. Slavery now stands erect, clanking its chains on the Territory of Kansas, surrounded by a code of death, and trampling upon all cherished

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