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small vote in Pennsylvania and New York, the repeal of the Missouri Compromise.
Nativism disappeared. An able writer of The bill was tabled in the Senate; to be
that day—Hon. A. H. H. Stuart, of Vir- revived at the following session. In the
ginia–published under the nom-de-plume Senate it was amended, on motion of Mr.
of “Madison " several letters in vindication Douglas, to read: “That so much of the
of the American party (revived in 1852,) in 8th section of an act approved March 6,
which he said: "The vital principle of the 1820, (the Missouri compromise)
American party is Americanism develop- which, being inconsistent with the princi-
ing itself in a deep-rooted attachment to ples of non-intervention by Congress with
our own country—its constitution, its union, slavery in the States and Territories, as
and its laws—to American men, and Ameri- recognized by the legislature of 1850, com-
can measures, and American interests--or, monly called the Compromise measures, is
in other words, a fervent patriotism, hereby declared inoperative and void; it
which, rejecting the transcendental philan. being the true intent and meaning of
thropy of abolitionists

, and that kindred this act not to legislate slavery into any batch of wild enthusiasts, who would seek Territory or State, nor to exclude it thereto embroil us with foreign countries, in from, but to leave the people thereof perrighting the wrongs of Ireland, or Hun- fectly free to form and regulate their gary, or Cuba-would guard with vestal domestic institutions in their own way, vigilance American institutions and Ameri- subject only to the Constitution of the tan interests against the baneful effects of United States." It was further amended, foreign influence."

on motion of Senator Clayton, to prohibit About 1852, when the question of slavery "alien suffrage.”

In the House this in the territories, and its extension or its amendment was not agreed to; and the abolition in the States, was agitated and bill finally passed without it, on the 25th causing sectional differences in the coun- May, 1854. try, many Whigs and Democrats forsook So far as Nebraska was concerned, no their parties, and took sides on the ques. excitement of any kind marked the initiations of the day

. This was aggravated by tion of her territorial existence. The the large number of alien naturalized citi- persons who emigrated there seemed to zens constantly added to the ranks of regard the pursuits of business as of moro voters

, who took sides with the Democrats interest than the discussion of slavery. and against the Whigs. Nativism then Kansas was less fortunate. Her territory re-appeared, but in a new form--that of a became at once the battle-field of a fierce secret fraternity. Its real name and ob- political conflict between the advocates of jects were not revealed-even to its mem- slavery, and the free soil men from the bers, until they reached a high degree in North who went there to resist the estabthe order; and the answer of members on lishment of that institution in the terribeing questioned on these subjects was, “I tory: Differences arose between the don't know ":—which gave it the popular Legislature and the Governor, brought name, by which it is yet known, of “Know- about by antagonisms between the Pronothing." Its moving causes were the slavery party and the Free State party; Growing power and designs of the Roman and the condition of affairs in Kansas Catholic Church in America; the sudden assumed so frightful a mien in January, influx of aliens ; and the greed and inca- 1856, that the President sent a special pacity of naturalized citizens for office. message to Congress on the subject, Its cardinal principle was

"Americans January 24, 1856 ; followed by a Proclamamust rule America"; and its countersign tion, February 11, 1856, “ warning all unwas the order of General Washington on a lawful combinations (in the territory) to critical occasion during the war: “Put retire peaceably to their respective abodes, none but Americans on guard to-night.” or he would use the power of the local Its early nominations were not made pub- militia, and the available forces of the lic, but were made by select committees United States to disperse them.” and conventions of delegates. At first Several applications were made to Conthese nominations were confined to selec- gress for several successive years, for the tions of the best Whig or best Democrat on admission of Kansas as a state in the the respective tickets; and the choice not Union; upon the basis of three separate being made known, but quietly voted for and distinct constitutions, all differing as by all the members of the order, the effect to the main questions at issue between the was only visible after election, and threw contending factions. The name of Kansas all calculation into chaos. For a while it was for some years synonymous with all was really the arbiter of elections. that is lawless and anarchical. Elections

On February 8, 1853, a bill passed the became mere farces, and the officers thus House of Representatives providing a ter- fraudulently placed in power, used their ritorial government for Nebraska, embrac- authority only for their own

or their ing all of what is now Kansas and party's interest. The party opposed to Nebraska. It was silent on the subject of slavery at length triumphed ; a constitution

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line. He was in a dilemma; to maintain The reason for these impressions was that position meant war with Great Britain; that an intrigue was laid, with the knowto recede from it seemed impossible. The ledge of the Executive, for a peace, even proposition for the line of 49 degrees hav- before the war was declared, and a special ing been withdrawn by the American gov- agent dispatched to bring about a return ernment on its non-acceptance by the Brit- to Mexico of its exiled President, General ish, had appeased the Democratic storm Santa Anna, and conclude a treaty of which had been raised against the Presi- peace with him, on terms favorable to the dent. Congress had come together under United States. And for this purpose Conthe loud cry of war, in which Mr. Cass was gress granted an appropriation of three the leader, but followed by the body of millions of dollars to be placed at the disthe democracy, and backed and cheered posal of the President, for negotiating for by the whole democratic newspaper press. a boundary which should give the United Under the authority and order of Congress States additional territory. notice had been served on Great Britain While this matter was pending in Conwhich was to abrogate the joint occupation gress, Mr. Wilmot of Pennsylvania introof the country by the citizens of the two duced and moved a proviso, " that no part powers. It was finally resolved by the of the territory to be acquired should be British Government to propose the line of open to the introduction of slavery.” It was 49. degrees, continuing to the ocean, as a proposition not necessary for the puroriginally offered by Mr. Calhoun; and pose of excluding slavery, as the only terthough the President was favorable to its ritory to be acquired was that of New acceptance, he could not, consistently with Mexico and California, where slavery was his previous acts, accept and make a already prohibited by the Mexican laws treaty, on that basis. The Senate, with and constitution. The proviso was therewhom lies the power, under the constitu- fore nugatory, and only served to bring on tion, of confirming or restricting all trea- a slavery agitation in the United States. ties, being favorable to it, without respect for this purpose it was seized upon by Mr. to party lines, resort was had, as in the Calhoun and declared to be an outrage early practice of the Government, to the upon and menace to the slave-holding President, asking the advice of the Senate States. It occupied the attention of Con. upon the articles of a treaty before negoti- gress for two sessions, and became the subation. A message was accordingly sent to ject of debate in the State Legislatures, the Senate, by the President, stating the several of which passed disunion résoluproposition, and asking its advice, thus tions. It became the watchword of partyshifting the responsibility upon that body, the synonym of civil war, and the dissoluand making the issue of peace or war de- tion of the Union. Neither party really pend upon its answer. The Senate advised had anything to fear or to hope from the the acceptance of the proposition, and the adoption of the proviso—the soil was free, treaty was concluded.

and the Democrats were not in a position The conduct of the Whig Senators, to make slave territory of it, because it without whose votes the advice would not had just enunciated as one of its cardinal have been given nor the treaty made, was principles, that there was no power in patriotic in preferring their country to Congress to legislate upon slavery in Territotheir party-in preventing a war with ries.” Never did two political parties conGreat Britain and saving the administra- tend more furiously about nothing. Close tion from itself and its party friends. observers, who had been watching the pro

The second session of the 29th Congress gress of the slavery agitation since its was opened in December, 1847. The inauguration in Congress in 1835, knew it President's message was chiefly in relation to be the means of keeping up an agitation to the war with Mexico, which had been for the benefit of the political parties--the declared by almost a unanimous vote in abolitionists on one side and the disunionCongress. Mr. Calhoun spoke against the ists or nullifiers on the other—to accomdeclaration in the Senate, but did not vote plish their own purposes. This was the

He was sincerely opposed to the celebrated Wilmot Proviso, whis for so war, although his conduct had produced it. long a time convulsed the Union; assisted Had he remained in the cabinet, to do in forcing the issue between the North and which he had not concealed his wish, he South on the slavery question, and almost would, no doubt, have labored earnestly caused a dissolution of the Union. The to have prevented it. Many members of proviso was defeated; that chance of the Congress, of the same party with the ad- nullifiers to force the issue was lost; anministration, were extremely averse to the other had to be made, which was speedily war, and had interviews with the President, done, by the introduction into the Senate to see if it was inevitable, before it was de- on the 19th February, 1847, by Mr. Cal. clared. Members were under the impression houn of his new slavery resolutions, dethat the war could not last above three claring the Territories to be the common months.

property of the several States; denying

upon it.

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the right of Congress to prohibit slavery passed with an amendment incorporating in a Territory, or to pass any law which into it the anti-slavery clause of the ordiwould have the effect to deprive the citi- nance of 1787. Mr. Calhoun, in the Senzens of any slave State from emigrating ate, declared that the exclusion of slavery with his property (slaves) into such Terri- from any territory was a subversion of the tory. The introduction of the resolutions Union; openly proclaimed the strife bewas prefaced by an elaborate speech by tween the North and South to be ended, Mr. Calhoun, who demanded an immediate and the separation of the States accompote upon them. They never came to a plished. His speech was an open invocarote; they were evidently introduced fortion to disunion, and from that time forth, the mere purpose of carrying a question to the efforts were regular to obtain a meetthe slave States on which they could being of the members from the slave States, formed into a unit against the free States; to unite in a call for a convention of the and so began the agitation which finally slave States to redress themselves. He led to the abrogation of the Missouri Com- said: “The great strife between the North promise line, and arrayed the States of one and the South is ended. The North is section against those of the other. determined to exclude the property of the

The Thirtieth Congress, which assem- slaveholder, and, of course, the slaveholder bled for its first session in December, 1847, himself

, from its territory. On this point was found, so far as respects the House of there seems to be no division in the North Representatives, to be politically adverse in the South, he regretted to say, there to the administration. "The Whigs were was some division of sentiment. The in the majority, and elected the Speaker; effect of this determination of the North Robert C. Winthrop, of Massachusetts, was to convert all the Southern population being chosen. The President's message into slaves; and he would never consent contained a full report of the progress of to entail that disgrace on his posterity. the war with Mexico; the success of the He denounced any Southern man who American arms in that conflict; the vic- would not take the same course. Gentletory of Cerro Gordo, and the capture of men were greatly mistaken if they supthe City of Mexico; and that negotiations posed the Presidential question in the were then pending for a treaty of peace. South would override this more important The message concluded with a reference one. The separation of the North and the to the excellent results from the indepen- South is completed. The South has now dent treasury system.

a most solemn obligation to perform-to The war with Mexico was ended by the herself-to the constitution-to the Union, signing of a treaty of peace, in February, She is bound to come to a decision not to 1848, by the terms of which New Mexico permit this to go on any further, but to and Upper California were ceded to the show that, dearly as she prizes the Union, United States, and the lower Rio Grande, there are questions which she regards as from its mouth to El Paso, taken for the of greater importance than the Union. boundary of Texas. For the territory thus This is not a question of territorial governacquired, the United States agreed to pay ment, but a question involving the conto Mexico the sum of fifteen million dol- tinuance of the Union." The President, lars

, in five annual installments; and be- in approving the Oregon bill, took occasides that, assumed the claims of Ameri- sion to send in a special message, pointcan citizens against Mexico, limited to sing out the danger to the Union from the three and a quarter million dollars, out of progress of the slavery agitation, and urged and on account of which claims the war an adherence to the principles of the ordi(stensibly originated. The victories achiev- nance of 1787—the terms of the Missouri ed by the American commanders, Generals compromise of 1820-as also that involved Zachary Taylor and Winfield Scott, during and declared in the Texas case in 1843, as that

war, won for them national reputa- the means of averting that danger, tions, by means of which they were brought The Presidential election of 1818 was prominently forward for the Presidential coming on. The Democratic convention. succession.

met in Baltimore in May of that year; The question of the power of Congress to each State being represented in the conlegislate on the subject of slavery in the vention by the number of delegates equal Territories, was again raised, at this session, to the number of electoral votes it was enon the bill for the establishment of the titled to; saving only New York, which Oregon territorial government. An amend-sent two sets of delegates, and both were ment was offered to insert a provision for excluded. The delegates were, for the the extension of the Missouri compromise most part, members of Congress and office. line to the Pacific Ocean; which líne thus holders. The two-thirds rule, adopted by extended was intended by the amendment the previous convention, was again made to be permanent, and to apply to all future a law of the convention. The main questerritories established in the West. This tion which arose upon the formation of amendment was lost, but the bill was finally the platform for the campaign, was the

line. He was in a dilemma; to maintain The reason for these impressions was that position meant war with Great Britain; that an intrigue was laid, with the knowto recede from it seemed impossible. The ledge of the Executive, for a peace, even proposition for the line of 49 degrees hav- before the war was declared, and a special ing been withdrawn by the American gov- agent dispatched to bring about a return ernment on its non-acceptance by the Brit- to Mexico of its exiled President, General ish, had appeased the Democratic storm Santa Anna, and conclude a treaty of which had been raised against the Presi- peace with him, on terms favorable to the dent. Congress had come together under United States. And for this purpose Conthe loud cry of war, in which Mr. Cass was gress granted an appropriation of three the leader, but followed by the body of millions of dollars to be placed at the disthe democracy, and backed and cheered posal of the President, for negotiating for by the whole democratic newspaper press. a boundary which should give the United Under the authority and order of Congress States additional territory. notice had been served on Great Britain While this matter was pending in Conwhich was to abrogate the joint occupation gress, Mr. Wilmot of Pennsylvania introof the country by the citizens of the two duced and moved a proviso, " that no part powers. It was finally resolved by the of the territory to be acquired should be British Government to propose the line of open to the introduction of slavery." It was 49. degrees, continuing to the ocean, as a proposition not necessary for the puroriginally offered by Mr. Calhoun; and pose of excluding slavery, as the only terthough the President was favorable to its ritory to be acquired was that of New acceptance, he could not, consistently with Mexico and California, where slavery was his previous acts, accept and make a already prohibited by the Mexican laws treaty, on that basis. The Senate, with and constitution. The proviso was therewhom lies the power, under the constitu- fore nugatory, and only served to bring on tion, of confirming or restricting all trea- a slavery agitation in the United States. ties, being favorable to it, without respect For this purpose it was seized upon by Mr. to party lines, resort was had, as in the Calhoun and declared to be an outrage early practice of the Government, to the upon and menace to the slave-holding President, asking the advice of the Senate States. It occupied the attention of Conupon the articles of a treaty before negoti- gress for two sessions, and became the subation. A message was accordingly sent to ject of debate in the State Legislatures, the Senate, by the President, stating the several of which passed disunion résoluproposition, and asking its advice, thus tions. It became the watchword of partyshifting the responsibility upon that body, the synonym of civil war, and the dissoluand making the issue of peace or war de- tion of the Union. Neither party really pend upon its answer. The Senate advised had anything to fear or to hope from the the acceptance of the proposition, and the adoption of the proviso—the soil was free, treaty was concluded.

and the Democrats were not in a position The conduct of the Whig Senators, to make slave territory of it, because it without whose votes the advice would not had just enunciated as one of its cardinal have been given nor the treaty made, was principles, that there was “no power in patriotic in preferring their country to Congress to legislate upon slavery in Territotheir party-in preventing a war with ries." Never did two political parties conGreat Britain-and saving the administra- tend more furiously about nothing. Close tion from itself and its party friends. observers, who had been watching the pro

The second session of the 29th Congress gress of the slavery agitation since its was opened in December, 1847. The inauguration in Congress in 1835, knew it President's message was chiefly in relation to be the means of keeping up an agitation to the war with Mexico, which had been for the benefit of the political parties—the declared by almost a unanimous vote in abolitionists on one side and the disunionCongress. 'Mr. Calhoun spoke against the ists or nullifiers on the other—to accomdeclaration in the Senate, but did not vote plish their own purposes. This was the upon it. He was sincerely opposed to the celebrated Wilmot Proviso, which for so war, although his conduct had produced it. long a time convulsed the Union; assisted Had he remained in the cabinet, to do in forcing the issue between the North and which he had not concealed his wish, he South on the slavery question, and almost would, no doubt, have labored earnestly caused a dissolution of the Union. The to have prevented it. Many members of proviso was defeated; that chance of the Congress, of the same party with the ad- nullifiers to force the issue was lost; anministration, were extremely averse to the other had to be made, which was speedily war, and had interviews with the President, done, by the introduction into the Senate to see if it was inevitable, before it was de on the 19th February, 1847, by Mr. Calclared. Members were under the impression houn of his new slavery resolutions, dethat the war could not last above three claring the Territories to be the common months,

property of the several States; denying

zens of

10

the right of Congress to prohibit slavery passed with an amendment incorporating in a Territory, or to pass any law which into it the anti-slavery clause of the ordiwould have the effect to deprive the citi-nance of 1787. Mr. Callıoun, in the Sen

any slave State from emigrating ate, declared that the exclusion of slavery with his property (slaves) into such Terri- from any territory was a subversion of the tory. The introduction of the resolutions Union; openly proclaimed the strife bewas prefaced by an elaborate speech by tween the North and South to be ended, Mr. Calhoun, who demanded an immediate and the separation of the States accomVote upon them. They never came to a plished. His speech was an open invocarote; they were evidently introduced for tion to disunion, and from that time forth, the mere purpose of carrying a question to the efforts were regular to obtain a meetthe slave States on which they could being of the members from the slave States, formed into a unit against the free States ; to unite in a call for a convention of the and so began the agitation which finally slave States to redress themselves. He led to the abrogation of the Missouri Com- said: “The great strife between the North promise line, and arrayed the States of one and the South is ended. The North is section against those of the other. determined to exclude the property of the The Thirtieth Congress, which assem- slaveholder, and, of course, the slaveholder bled for its first session in December, 1847, himself, from its territory. On this point was found, so far as respects the House of there seems to be no division in the North Representatives, to be politically adverse In the South, he regretted to say, there to the administration. The Whigs were was some division of sentiment. The in the majority, and elected the Speaker; effect of this determination of the North Robert C. Winthrop, of Massachusetts, was to convert all the Southern population being chosen. The President's message into slaves; and he would never consent contained a full report of the progress of to entail that disgrace on his posterity. the war with Mexico; the success of the He denounced any Southern man who American arms in that conflict; the vic- would not take the same course. Gentletory of Cerro Gordo, and the capture of men were greatly mistaken if they supthe City of Mexico; and that negotiations posed the Presidential question in the were then pending for a treaty of peace. South would override this more important The message concluded with a reference one. The separation of the North and the to the excellent results from the indepen- South is completed. The South has now dent treasury system.

a most solemn obligation to perforin-to The war with Mexico was ended by the herself-to the constitution-to the Union. signing of a treaty of peace, in February, She is bound to come to a decision not to 1848, by the terms of which New Mexico permit this to go on any further, but to and Upper California were ceded to the show that, dearly as she prizes the Union, United States, and the lower Rio Grande, there are questions which she regards as from its mouth to El Paso, taken for the of greater importance than the Union. boundary of Texas. For the territory thus This is not a question of territorial governacquired, the United States agreed to pay ment, but a question involving the conto Mexico the sum of fifteen million dol- tinuance of the Union.” The President, lars

, in five annual installments; and be in approving the Oregon bill, took occasides that, assumed the claims of Ameri-sion to send in a special message, pointcan citizens against Mexico, limited to ing out the danger to the Union from the three and a quarter million dollars, out of progress of the slavery agitation, and urged and on account of which claims the war an adherence to the principles of the ordiistensibly originated. The victories achiev- nance of 1787—the terms of the Missouri ed by the American commanders, Generals compromise of 1820——as also that involved Zachary Taylor and Winfield Scott, during and declared in the Texas case in 1817, as that war, won for them national reputa- the means of averting that danger. tions, by means of which they were brought The Presidential election of 1848 was prominently forward for the Presidential coming on. The Democratic convention succession.

met in Baltimore in May of that year; The question of the power of Congress to each State being represented in the conlegislate on the subject of slavery in the vention by the number of delegates equal Territories

, was again raised, at this session, to the number of electoral votes it was enon the bill for the establishment of the titled to; saving only New York, which Oregon territorial government. An amend sent two sets of delegates, and both were ment was offered to insert a provision for excluded. The delegates were, for the the extension of the Missouri compromise most part, members of Congress and office. line to the Pacific Ocean; which líne thus holders. The two-thirds rule, adopted by extended was intended by the amendment the previous convention, was again made to be permanent, and to apply to all future a law of the convention. The main questerritories established in the West. This tion which arose upon the formation of amendment was lost, but the bill was finally the platform for the campaign, was the

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