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Admission of Missouri.


gation to the gentleman for wishing to prevent that quarter of the country from this inconvenience, by shutting up Missouri, which would leave them no other resort but the white peopled States. But further, if a colored man may become a free citizen, he cannot be sent away; and, if not a citizen, other States are not bound to receive him when he is sent away. Mr. O., however, did not admit that the mere manumission of a slave would make him a citizen. This was a very different question from any which he had considered, and it might be far from true that manumission would produce any such effect, and yet every principle advanced by him remains impregnable.

judicial department. It was, however, the first time he had ever heard it urged as a sound or safe principle that the rights, or even the claims of any portion of the people might be abandoned by the Legislature, because the courts could do them justice. It was, indeed, curious to observe the fluctuations of opinion relative to the judicial power occasioned by the different circumstances under which it was called forth. There was now upon the table a resolution declaring null and void the sedition act, which had received the sanction of two Congresses and many judicial decisions. In this case of Missouri, however, he insisted that the judiciary could give no adequate relief. The justice here sought was not remedial but preventive- On the whole, he said, he had no ambition to not to restore to an individual violated rights, but be distinguished as a zealot in the cause of emanto place numbers beforehand in a condition to ex- cipation, or an advocate for a sudden change of ercise them. It was to retain (so far as the ex- condition in that unfortunate class of persons who pression of the opinion of Congress could do it) to were held in servitude. Much less was he inclined all free colored citizens the right of going to Mis- to adopt any language or measures tending to souri, if they thought fit, and settling therein, and excite among them a spirit of discontent, or to not to redress the injury of one or more individ- wound the feelings or rouse the irritation or resentuals who might be driven from its limits. Con- ment of their owners. The evil of slavery was gress was to settle a principle, not to try a cause-too profoundly rooted for him to indicate or even and if the principle was abandoned, no cause imagine its cure. would ever be tried. What individual would ever No circumstances led him to regret discussions be found to journey through the immeasurable affecting the people of color in the United States wilderness, "with lingering steps and slow," and more than their unavoidable tendency to elicit obset his foot in Missouri with a certainty of being servations which might be misunderstood, and driven back, for the privilege of having recourse aggravate the troubles of slavery by adding disto the courts of the United States, at an expense content and vain hopes of freedom to the number. entirely beyond his compass, and beyond the value The actual condition of slaves in the old States of the object of his journey? And if such a per- was not a subject for the cognizance of Congress. son could be found, what is the situation of others And until those whom it immediately concerned who might wish to settle there while the cause is could make some discovery whereby the abolition pending? It had, indeed, been often urged, that of slavery could be effected, he feared that the the Legislature of Missouri might enact laws to efforts of others, however well intended, would be the end provided for in their constitution, even if worse than nugatory. So far was he from wishthat instrument had been silent. Certainly they ing it to be understood by the slaves that the people might do so, but it was equally certain they might of the North would hold them justified in any vioforbear thus to legislate. But, by passing this res-lent measures to attempt the attainment of freeolution, and thus giving efficacy to their constitution, you communicate to the State and to its constitution the whole power of the Union for giving effect to this policy, and compel their Legislature to pass laws which they might otherwise omit, or which, if enacted, they might afterwards repeal. The honorable gentleman from Maine had favored the Senate with an exposition of his ideas of the form citizen, as found in the Constitution, which O. said he was not able to comprehend, but ch, if he did understand it, would enable a to disfranchise all her citizens of all colors complexions.

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He would not pause to consider that doctrine, nor, indeed, to notice all the suggestions of that gentleman. There was, however, one topic unfolded by him to which he would for a moment advert. The gentleman contended that our opposition to the power of the States to exclude persons of color from settlement in their jurisdictions would operate in favor of the slaveholding States sending away their freed blacks into other States, and that the Northern States would be thus overrun with their swarms. He could not believe, however, that the North would realize their obli16th CoN. 2d SESS.-4

dom, he was desirous of their realizing, what he believed to be true, that all considerate persons in every section of the Union would unite with one accord with their masters in putting down every species of revolt and insurrection, as pregnant with dreadful calamities to the whole nation. This had ever been his feeling and his language. But, with these convictions, he would strenuously and for ever oppose the extension of slavery, and all measures which should subject a freeman, of whatever color, to the degradation of a slave. Believing, therefore, that every free citizen of color in the Union was joint tenant with himself in the public lands of Missouri, and of the jurisdiction possessed by the United States in that Territory until it should be elsewhere vested; and that, however humble and disadvantageous might be his sphere, he was entitled to his protection equally with those born to a happier destiny, he could not consent to an act which should divest him of his property and rights, and interdict him from even passing into a country of which he was a legitimate coproprietor with himself.

When Mr. OTIS had concluded

Mr. BARBOUR, of Virginia, presuming that some

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other gentleman might desire to deliver his sentiments on the question, moved an adjournment; and the Senate adjourned.

MONDAY, December 11.

Mr. BARBOUR gave notice that, to-morrow, he would ask leave to bring in a bill concerning the collection of the public moneys.

Mr. PINKNEY submitted the following motion for consideration :

Resolved, That the Committee on the Judiciary be instructed to inquire into the expediency of passing a law amending or explaining the judiciary laws in such manner as to authorize, under such restrictions as may be thought proper, the prosecution of writs of error, in criminal cases, from the judgments of the highest court of judicature in a State, in which any question has arisen under the Constitution or laws of the Union, to the Supreme Court of the United States; and that the said committee report by bill or otherwise.

A message from the House of Representatives informed the Senate that the House have passed a bill, entitled "An act for the relief of Nicholas Jarrott;" a bill, entitled "An act to alter the time of holding the district court in the district of Mississippi ;" and a bill, entitled "An act to amend the act entitled 'an act to alter the times of the session of the circuit and district courts in the District of Columbia ;"" in which bills they request the concurrence of the Senate.

The three last bills brought up for concurrence were read, and severally passed to the second reading.

December, 1820.

with the amendments reported thereto by the Committee on Military Affairs, and, having agreed to the amendments, the further consideration of the bill was postponed until to-morrow.

The Senate proceeded to consider, as in Committee of the Whole, the bill, entitled "An act to incorporate the managers of the National Vaccine Institution in the District of Columbia ;" and the further consideration thereof was postponed until to-morrow.

The Senate proceeded to consider, as in Committee of the Whole, the bill to continue in force for a further time the act, entitled "An act for establishing trading-houses with the Indian tribes;” and the further consideration thereof was postponed to Thursday next.

The Senate proceeded to consider, as in Committee of the Whole, the resolution authorizing Mountjoy Bayly to employ a person to attend the furnace, and no amendment having been proposed thereto, the PRESIDENT reported it to the House, and the resolution was ordered to be engrossed and read a third time.

The Senate proceeded to consider, as in Committee of the Whole, the bill for the relief of John Holmes, and no amendment having been proposed thereto, the PRESIDENT reported it to the House, and it was ordered to be engrossed and read a third time.

The Senate proceeded to consider, as in Committee of the Whole, the bill for the relief of Morgan Brown, and no amendment having been proposed thereto, the PRESIDENT reported it to the House, and it was ordered to be engrossed and


Mr. HORSEY, from the Committee on the Dis-read a third time. trict of Columbia, to whom was recommitted the bill to incorporate the Columbian Society for literary purposes, reported the same with an amend


Mr. HORSEY presented the memorial of Thomas Law and others, citizens of Washington, praying that so much of that portion of the public ground in the city of Washington, known by the name of "Reservation No. 10," as now remains to the public, may be sold on condition of improvement; and the memorial was read, and referred to the Committee on the District of Columbia.

Mr. WALKER, of Alabama, presented the memorial of the Legislature of the State of Alabama, in behalf of certain petitioners, inhabitants of that State, who are purchasers of public lands, and who, from the great diminution of the circulating medium, and the operation of the law reducing the price of the public lands, are unable to comply with the terms of their purchases, soliciting for said purchasers such relief as to Congress may seem meet; and the memorial was read, and referred to the Committee on the Public Lands.

The Senate then resumed the consideration of the resolution declaring the assent of Congress to the admission of the State of Missouri into the Union.

Mr. EATON, of Tennessee, said, before the Senate proceeded to a final vote upon the resolution, he would ask permission again to offer the amendment which had heretofore been submitted, and rejected. This, he believed, was strictly in order. The rejection of the proviso being before the Senate, in Committee of the Whole, did not prevent it from being considered, now that the resolution was reported to the Senate. Mr. E. then offered the following amendment to the resolution:

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The Senate resumed, as in Committee of the Mr. KING, of New York, said, as the amendWhole, the consideration of the bill for the reliefment had already been considered, and rejected of Robert Purdy; and, on motion of Mr. LLOYD, it was ordered to lie on the table.

The Senate resumed, as in Committee of the Whole, the consideration of the bill for the relief of the officers and volunteers engaged in the late campaign against the Seminole Indians, together

by the Senate, he regretted that it had been deemed expedient to offer it again. I object now, said Mr. K., as I have done before, to this amendment, because it declares that, in the admission of Missouri, the Senate have not considered, and do not pronounce any opinion, concerning the clause of




Admission of Missouri.

the Missouri constitution which makes it the duty of the Legislature thereof to pass laws to exclude free negroes and mulattoes from coming to, and settling in, Missouri. This declaration ought not to be made, because it would exhibit the Senate in this singular situation, (if his construction of the constitution of Missouri was correct,) that, in passing the act of admission, the Senate omits to consider and to allow its due weight to the only provision in that Constitution upon which the obligation to admit, or not admit, Missouri depends. Mr. K. said he considered this proposition of much more importance than the mover of it appeared to do; and he was not willing to decide on it instanter at any rate.



to detain the Senate; that if he had entertained a wish to engage in the discussion, the present state of his health was such, that he could not express himself so as to be heard by the Senate, nor could he speak at all without great pain. He rose, he said, to state an objection to the constitution of Missouri, which had not been alluded to in the debate on this resolution-an objection of more force, and, in his view, involving principles more important to the interests of the nation, than the provision which had been so much discussed. The eighth article of the constitution of Missouri authorizes the establishment of a bank with a capital half of which shall be reserved for the use of the not to exceed five millions of dollars, at least oneMr. EATON replied at some length. He said he State. Mr. T. said he considered this provision a certainly would be as unwilling as any one to direct and palpable violation of that part of the press the consideration of what he had submitted, tenth section of the Federal Constitution, which This before gentlemen had fully made up their minds, provides that "no State shall coin money, emit and were prepared to vote. He doubted not, how- bills of credit, [or] make any thing but gold and ever, but that upon this subject all were prepared. silver coin a tender in payment of debts." It would be borne in mind by the Senate that this important provision of the Federal Constitution, was not now an original proposition, but one that said Mr. T., was intended to guard against evils had before been considered and voted upon. When which might embarrass the Federal Government, he had first the honor of submitting it, the gentle- and prove destructive to the best interests of the man from New York (Mr. KING) had urged his people of the United States. An immaterial change want of preparation, and on an application for in the form did not change the substance. Whepostponement by himself, the postponement had ther a bill of credit is signed by an auditor, a been granted. Under this state of things, Mr. E. treasurer, an officer of a State, or a president of a The power to coin money, regulate the could not perceive any necessity for further pro- bank created for that purpose, the evils are the crastination, more especially when it seemed to same. be the wish of all to put an end, in some way, to value thereof, and of foreign coin, and fix the this unpleasant question. Mr. E. said as to the standard of weights and measures, has been exconstitutionality of the subject, however other clusively given to Congress. It was never congentlemen might be fully satisfied, yet with him, templated or anticipated that these important and with others he believed, the fact was other-powers should be rendered nugatory by bank mawise. He was not willing either to affirm or to deny, that the constitution of Missouri was in strict conformity to the Constitution of the United States; he should have doubts were he to be required affirmatively to vote either way. But of this he did not pretend to doubt that, thus situated, thus doubting, it was his duty to lean to the side of the Constitution, and by his vote to support that instrument which he and every member had sworn to maintain inviolate. The proviso ventured an opinion neither way; it was a protestando in the true signification of the term-the exclusion of a conclusion a waiver on the part of Congress to give an opinion either one way or the other. This being the object which he wished to attain, he trusted the Senate would excuse his again pressing on their consideration that which had been Mr. President: It cannot be said by the honorbefore acted and voted upon. Encouraged by the information that some gentlemen who had before When the voted against the proviso had changed their opin-able Senate that I am in the practice of consuming ions, and were now disposed to vote for it, was much of their time in debate, or of frequently askwith him the inducement for again venturing to ing their attention to my remarks. offer it. Time had been afforded to think fully honorable gentleman from Virginia, (Mr. Baron it, and further delay he thought ought not to BOUR,) immediately after this resolution was reported by your committee, intimated a wish that be requested. the question might be taken sub'silentio, I was gratified with the hope that the unpleasant subject would pass off in that way. But as several gentlemen have occupied your attention, and have presented an unexpected view of the subject, I am

Mr. BARBOUR declined engaging in the debate, not, he said, that he was unwilling to meet the question, but with a hope and under the expectation that the question would be immediately taken. Mr. TRIMBLE, of Ohio, said it was not his wish

chinery, put in operation either by Federal or State power. Mr. T. said it was also his opinion that banks, as established in the United States, are anti-republican institutions, which tend inevitably to aristocracy.

Mr. SMITH said he would refer the gentleman to the journals of the last session, to show that a resolution admitting Alabama into the Union had passed without opposition, and that the constitution of Alabama contained a provision for the establishment of a bank.

The Senate then divided on the amendment, and there rose in its favor twenty-three members, and it was agreed to.

The question then being on ordering the resoluMr. MORRIL, of New Hampshire, arose and tion to a third reading, as amendedthus addressed the Senate:

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inclined to offer my opinion also. In doing this, I am not influenced from an anxiety to make a speech before the Senate, nor from the pride of having the event announced in the public papers simply for the perusal of my constituents. I would assure the Senate I am not stimulated either by pleasure or ambition on this occasion; neither will my remarks arise from any peculiar hostility to the admission of Missouri into this Union, on such principles, and with such a constitution, as coincide with the provisions of the Constitution of the United States. I disclaim sinister motives and sectional partialities on this subject, and declare myself actuated by more noble and important views; and, solemnly impelled by a sense of duty I owe to my constituents and my country, I will endeavor to divest myself of preconceived opinions ou the subject of slavery, and avoid any expression which may tend to revive those unpleasant sensations which so evidently prevailed in this body during the last session, and through the country, and examine the subject as involving a great Constitutional question. The inquiry is not, in this case, whether slavery shall exist or be tolerated in Missouri. I am ready to admit, for the moment, that this has been so far settled by the vote of the last session as not to come into the present debate; but the passing of the resolution recognises a principle materially affecting the rights of other States and the privileges of their citizens. This principle, and the consequences of admitting it, will be the subject of my remarks.

Sir, I must be permitted to state that this debate is not courted by Congress; it is from imperious necessity that any are compelled to protest against the adoption of the resolution; to save the Constitution of the nation inviolate, and preserve harmony and union.

To present my view more fully on this subject, it may be useful to recur to the objects of the Confederation. These I discover, in part, in the preamble of the Constitution:

We, the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquillity, provide for the common defence, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of


"Union, justice, domestic tranquillity, common defence, general welfare, and the blessings of liberty secured to posterity," were the grand and primary objects in establishing this Constitution, under which, and for these purposes, the Government was organized. The guardianship and protection of this, the charter of our rights, is now committed to the people and their representatives in Congress. It is, then, our duty, with vigilance and a watchful eye, to mark the progress of events, and arrest, at the threshold, the unhallowed hand which may be raised to pervert its meaning, misuse its provisions, or tarnish its glory. After reflecting upon the solemn obligations which devolve upon the members of this body, to examine with solicitude the principles and provisions of the Constitution, and faithfully and impartially apply them to the ex


isting circumstances of the country, it would not seem strange if a peculiar anxiety were manifest on their application to a case pregnant with doubts and fearful apprehensions.

Sir, the first thing when I entered this chamber, to become a member of the Senate, was, to approach your chair, and take a solemn oath to support the Constitution. This I consider more than a mere formality-an obligation by which I am bound, in my own conscience, to guard with vigilance the general and particular rights guarantied by that instrument to this privileged nation. It is not necessary to refer you to the toils and privations of past periods to show their value. A moment's reflection upon the time that Sir Walter Raleigh visited the banks of the Roanoke; Captain Smith explored the Eastern shore from Penobscot to Cape Cod, or our ancestors landed upon the Rock of Plymouth, with some of the succeeding events, will furnish the mind with evidence of the estimate we ought to put upon the Constitution, and the blessings it secures to our country. Forty years successful experience of the enjoyment of equal rights, under a free Government, demonstrate the advantages of republican institutions. But, sir, I waive all other considerations, and proceed to examine one point which attracts our attention and merits particular notice.

Is there any paragraph in the constitution of Missouri which contravenes any provision in the Constitution of the United States? This will be a subject of inquiry.

We find in the Constitution of Missouri that, "it shall be the duty of the General Assembly, as soon as may be, to pass such laws as may be necessary to prevent negroes and mulattoes from coming to, and settling in this State, under any pretext whatsoever. No comment upon this can be necessary to render its meaning perfectly intelligible.

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This will lead me to inquire into the duty and power of Congress, and then recur to this provision again.

"The United States, in Congress assembled, shall guaranty to every State in this Union a republican form of Government, and protect each of 'them against invasion." This is necessary, to "insure domestic tranquillity, promote the gen'eral welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty 'to ourselves and our posterity."

It is the duty of Congress to see "that full faith ' and credit are given in each State to the public acts, records, and judicial proceedings of every other State." This is essential "to perfect the Union, establish justice," cement the bonds of harmony, and secure the rights and privileges of the existing States.

By this, a mutual friendship would be encouraged, a unity of sentiment extended, and a confidence in the whole concentrated.

Congress have power to receive new States into the Confederacy. "New States may be admitted by the Congress into this Union." In doing this, they are bound to see that the rights and privileges of the individual States are not infringed. They are not only expected to secure inviolate the rights

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of States, but "the privileges and immunities" of their citizens. Among these, the following is a very essential one. "The citizens of each State shall be entitled to all the privileges and immunities of citizens in the several States."

Sir, by this I understand that a citizen in any State in the Union may pass into any other State in the Union, and there enjoy "all the privileges and immunities of citizens" in the State to which he removes.

The same principle I find engrafted in the Articles of Confederation; by having recourse to that I find my exposition confirmed, and the same sentiment more fully and particularly expressed.

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As I before observed, I must now, for the purpose of comparison, recur to the provision of the constitution of Missouri, which makes it the duty of "the General Assembly to pass laws to prevent 'free negroes and mulattoes from coming to, and settling in, this State, under any pretext whatsoever."

Believing it fully demonstrated, that free persons of color are citizens, and conceiving it equally clear that some States in the Union have citizens of this description, and that the Constitution of the United States secures to all the citizens in all the States the unmolested liberty of migrating to any State in the Union, and there to enjoy unrestrained, the "privileges and immunities" of the citizens of that State, I ask, is this restrictive clause in the constitution of Missouri compatible with the express provisions of the Constitution of the United States?

"The better to secure and perpetuate mutual friendship and intercourse among the people of the different States in this Union, the free inhabitants of each of these States shall be entitled to all the privileges and immunities of free citizens in the several States; and the people of each State shall have free ingress and I distinctly answer the question. Sir, it is not. regress to and from any other State, and shall enjoy But, say gentlemen, "we must not examine this therein all the privileges of trade and commerce, sub-subject;" there may be difficulties, and there may ject to the same duties, impositions, and restrictions, as the inhabitants thereof respectively."

not be. If there should be any, submit them to the Judiciary.

The express language of this section so perfectly Sir, I do not accede to this doctrine. Congress coincides with the opinion I have ventured to ad- have the power to examine, and I shall venture to vance, that a comment could add nothing to its exercise it. "New States may be admitted by the perspicuity. Could the term citizen need exposi- Congress into this Union." How? By guess, or tion, I would offer one, which, however, I could by lot, without knowledge or reflection; or by exscarcely have imagined, had it not been for the amination and legislation? "The United States novel and fallacious remarks of the honorable gen- shall guaranty to every State in this Union a retleman from Maine (Mr. HOLMES.) In the fore-publican form of government." How are the regoing extract we find the terms "inhabitants, cit-publican features of the Constitution to be ascerizens, and people," used as synonymous. tained but by examination? It can be done neither by weight nor by measure.

These are perfectly well understood in our community, and, I will only add, take from the inhab- I would seriously ask, for what purpose was the itants slaves and aliens, and the remainder are cit-constitution of Missouri presented to Congress? izens.

Color does not come into the consideration, and it has no share in characterizing an inhabitant or a citizen. On this exposition I shall rest my argument.

We are led to presume, for examination and approbation, as this has been the general practice from the organization of the Government to the present time.

If this were not the case, why did not the conI will now pass to inquire what are the provi-vention of Missouri inform Congress by letter, or sions of the Constitution of the United States re-its delegate, they had made a constitution, and specting the powers of the several States. These must now be admitted into the Union? Surely are all uniform and equal. They have certain this would have been a very summary and novel powers, and are prohibited certain acts. course, but no more exceptionable than to offer a constitution without admitting the liberty of examining it.

"The times, places, and manner of holding elec'tions for Senators and Representatives, shall be 'prescribed in each State by the Legislature there'of;" and, when vacancies occur, the State authority may fill them. But "no State shall enter ' into any treaty, alliance, or confederation; coin | money, or make any thing but gold and silver coin a tender in payment of debts; or grant any title of nobility; or keep troops or ships of war ' in time of peace."

The condition of Vermont was materially different from that of any other State. In consequence of difficulties subsisting between her and New York, respecting territorial limits, her constitution was formed, and her government organized, some years previous to her admission into the Union. But on her application by commissioners, she was admitted by an act of Congress, approved The reason is, by agreement, it is prohibited in February 18, 1791. "The State of Vermont havthe Constitution, and in the same manner by agree-ing petitioned the Congress to be admitted a ment, it is provided, that "the citizens of each State shall be entitled to all the privileges and immuni'ties of citizens in the several States ;" and they "shall have free ingress and regress to and from 'any other State, and shall enjoy therein all the 'privileges of the inhabitants thereof, subject to no 'other restriction than they respectively" endure.

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member of the United States, Be it enacted, &c., That, on the 4th day of March, 1791, the said State, by the name and style of the State of Vermont,' shall be received and admitted into this Union, as a new and entire member of the

'United States of America."

The district of Kentucky, being originally a part

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