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dering it less manly and republican, and less worthy, than in the non-slaveholding States, because it is not less decorous than true; it is refuted in a moment by a review of the revolutionary, and particularly the last war. Look into your histories, compare the conduct of the heroes and statesmen of the North and South, in both those wars, in the field and in the Senate; see the monuments of valor, of wisdom, and patriotism, they have left behind them, and then ask an impartial world, on which side the Delaware lies the preponderance: they will answer in a moment, to the South.
It will not be a matter of surprise to any one, that so much anxiety should be shown by the slaveholding States, when it is known that the alarm, given by this attempt to legislate on slavery, has led to the opinion that the very foundations of that kind of property are shaken; that the establishment of the precedent is a measure of the most alarming nature; for, should succeeding Congresses continue to push it, there is no knowing to what length it may be carried.
Have the Northern States any idea of the value of our slaves? At least, sir, six hundred millions of dollars. If we lose them, the value of the lands they cultivate will be diminished in all cases one-half, and, in many, they will become wholly useless, and an annual income of at least forty millions of dollars will be lost to your citizens; the loss of which will not alone be felt by the non-slaveholding States, but by the whole Union; for, to whom, at present, do the Eastern States most particularly, and the Eastern and Northern generally, look for the employment of their shipping, in transporting our bulky and valuable products, and bringing us the manufactures and merchandises of Europe? Another thing, in case of these losses being brought on us, and our being forced into a division, what becomes of your public debt? Who are to pay this, and how will it be paid? In a pecuniary view of this subject, therefore, it must ever be the policy of the Eastern and Northern States to continue connected with us. But, sir, there is an infinitely greater call upon them, and this is the call of justice, of affection, and humanity. Reposing at a great distance, in safety, in the full enjoyment of all their federal and State rights, unattacked in either, or in their individual rights, can they, with indifference, or ought they to risk, in the remotest degree, the consequences which this measure may produce. These may be the division of this Union, and a civil war. Knowing that whatever is said here, must get into the public prints, I am unwilling, for obvious reasons, to go into the description of the horrors which such a war must produce, and ardently pray that none of us may ever live to witness such an event.
If you refuse to admit Missouri without this prohibition, and she refuses it, and proceeds to form a constitution for herself, and then applies to you for admission, what will you do? Will you compel them by force? By whom, or by what force can this be effected? Will the States in her neighborhood join in this crusade? Will they who, to a man, think Missouri is right, and you are wrong, arm in such a cause? Can you send a force from the eastward of the Delaware? The very distance forbids it; and distance is a powerful auxiliary to a country attacked. If, in the days of James II., English soldiers, under military discipline, when ordered to march against their countrymen, contending in the cause of liberty, disobeyed the order, and laid down their arms, do you think our free brethren on the Mississippi will not do the same 1 Yes, sir, they will refuse, and you will at last be obliged to retreat from this measure, and in a manner that will not add much to the dignity of your government.
I cannot, on any ground, think of agreeing to a compromise on this subject. However we all may wish to see Missouri admitted, as she ought, on equal terms with the
other States, this is a very unimportant object to her, compared with keeping the Constitution inviolate—with keeping the hands of Congress from touching the question of slavery. On the subject of the Constitution, no compromise ought ever to be made. Neither can any be made on the national faith, so seriously involved in the treaty which gives to all Louisiana, to every part of it, a right to be incorporated into the Union on equal terms with the other States.
Surely, sir, when we consider the public distress of this country, and the necessity of union and good humor to repair our finances, and place our commerce in that improved situation which will give us some hope of the rise of our products, such as may have a tendency to relieve our public and private embarrassments, if we had no other motives for it, certainly this should be sufficient. But, sir, there is one of infinitely higher moment. Do we recollect, that we are the only free republic now in existence, and that, probably, such existence can only depend upon our distance from Europe, and our union with our present numbers? It may safely be calculated we have two millions of men, the greatest part of whom are able to bear arms.
In case of our continuing a united people, no attack from Europe, a distance of four thousand miles, could ever be made with the least hope of success. From the distance, all Europe could not furnish either the men or the means sufficient to divide or destroy this Union. If we continue united, as we have been, in such an event, the States would so second the general government, and so nerve its arm, as to put all attack at defiance. But, if on this, or any other occasion, this Union should unhappily divide, and from friends become bitter and implacable enemies to each other, who shall say what Europe may attempt? Mark what they have done among themselves, to subjugate France, and destroy, in that part of the world, everything that has the semblance of republicanism. View the league they have formed, in which, for the first time, all Europe is seen united as a single government, to maintain their monarchical forms. Such is, no doubt, their detestation of everything like republicanism, that, were the United States in Europe, where they could be reached by land, I have not the smallest doubt, they would long since have been attacked, and every attempt made to reduce them to a monarchy. We are considered, sir, as an evil example to the monarchical world. We are considered as the only repository of those principles which have lately appeared and flourished for a time in Europe, and which it has cost them so much blood aud treasure to suppress; and should our divisions, from friends to enemies, ever afford them an opportunity of striking at us, with the least probability of success, no doubt they will do so.
I will not trespass further on your patience, but thank the committee for the honor they have done me by their attention. I hope the great importance of the subject will be my excuse; and that, considering the relation in which I have stood to the Western country and the Mississippi, for the salvation of which, so far as means the keeping it annexed to this Union, as I have already said, I think I may claim to a gentleman, now high in office, and myself, as much as any other two can claim, the happiness of being the instruments, and having 'thus, in the early part of my life, labored with success for the parent, I cannot but think it a little extraordinary that I should, at this distant period, be called upon to defend the right of her children. My fervent wish is, that I may be able to do it with the same success.
Extract from the speech of Mr. Whitman, of Massachusetts, on the Missouri bill, which may be found in the sixteenth volume of Niles's Register. It was delivered upon the occasion of a motion to apply the slavery restriction in the Arkansas territorial bill:
"We should consider that we have, by our common and joint funds, acquired a large tract of vacant territory west of the Mississippi: that it is valuable to our country, as furnishing a fertile region for the citizens of our country to resort to for the purpose of bettering their condition, acquiring property, and providing for their children. The two great sections of the Union—to wit, the slaveholding and non-slaveholding sections—have an equal right to its enjoyment. By permitting slavery in every part of it, the non-slaveholding portion will be deprived of it; if not entirely, certainly in a very great degree. On the other hand, if the people of the South cannot carry their slaves with them when they emigrate, the benefit will be equally lost to them."
Extract from the speech of Mr. Shaw, of Massachusetts, on the Missouri bill, in 1820.
"The opinion of mutual interest, is the chain which binds these States together. Change this opinion, for one, that a section of this country is hostile to the interest of another, and distrust and jealousy ensue: make that hostility palpable, and the Union would not last a day. The slaveholding States, like the non-slaveholding States, are alive to all questions that touch their property: and, however humiliating it may be to speak of human beings as property, the Constitution and laws of our country consider the slaves of the South as such. Any question calculated to affect the value, or the right to this species of population, conld not but be regarded by our countrymen of the south with the utmost jealousy. The country west of the Mississippi was purchased with the joint funds of the nation; all, therefore, had a joint interest in it. But the amendment proposed, by excluding slaves, absolutely excluded the population of all the southern and a part of the western States from that fertile domain. This fur