A large portion of our columns this week is taken up with Judge Douglas's speech. We thought we could not give our readers a more acceptable treat than this masterly effort in favor of the constitutional rights of the South. The South has for more than thirty years borne the unjust and unconstitutional restrictions embraced in the Missouri Compromise for the sake of peace, -- Whilst northern men by virtue of this Compromise could go into any Territory belonging to the United States with all their property and settle there, Southern men could not carry their property North of 36 30. The South has submitted to this humiliating demand of the abolitionists as we said, for the sake of peace. But submission did not bring peace, it only encouraged the enemies of the South to greater demands. -- When the New Territory acquired from Mexico was about to be organized, the South was willing to have the Missouri Compromise extended to the Pacific, but the free soilers having grown bold and insolent by their former success, would not abide by the Missouri Compromise, but demanded that the Wilmot Proviso should be thrown around the territory South of 36 30. So that slaveholders should be kept out all the territory acquired from Mexico. -- This produced the great excitement on the slavery question, and finally led to the Compromise of 1850. Judge Douglas in his speech has demonstrated that the free soil portion were the first to break the Missouri Compromise, and that by the settlement of the question by the compromise of 1850, the whole slavery question was settled forever.
He contends that upon the basis of that
settlement, the people of every new territory,
whether lying north or south of the Missouri
compromise line, have the right to
decide whether they will have slavery within
their territory or not; and that Congress
hereafter shall have nothing to do in the
premises. These principles are so reasonable
and so just to all parties, that we had
hoped that that the whole South would have
united in their support. But we fear there
are some men at the South in whose bosom
the hatred of Democracy is even stronger
than the love of country.
This document was produced as part of a document analysis project by Lloyd Benson, Department of History, Furman University. (Proofing info: Entered by Lloyd Benson. .) This electronic version may not be copied, or linked to, or otherwise used for commercial purposes, (including textbook or publication-related websites) without prior written permission. The views expressed in this document are for educational, historical, and scholarly use only, and are not intended to represent the views of the project contributors or Furman University.