The globe. (Huntingdon, Pa.) 1856-1877, March 06, 1867, Image 2

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Wednesday morning, Mob, 6, 1867.
Lewis. Editor anti Proprietor
Hugh Lindsay, Associate Editor.
" I , l , fde o f u.. 111 6 ' 1 'iiu abide a loyal rill
n may so rcdl ,l,an , astrate his devotion to
4r.,• vollnlrg va The Flog
Coorlihrtiroi Flaw', wan' all circum-
A 4 SAILA NT.S, 1T 11,./IE AND ACIV,i,F)."
"%TM a"®
litau llocolistmctioll Bill.
The Bill Passed Over The Veto,
WASUINGTON. March 2.—The follow
ing is the message of the President of
the United States, returning to the
House of Representatives a hill enti
tled "An Act, to provide for the more
efficient government of the rebel
Sates :"
To the Rouse - of Representatives:
I have examined the bill 'To Iwo
vide for the more efficient government
of the rebel States." with the care and
anxiety which its transeendant imper,
tance is calculated to awaken. lam
unable to give it my assent for reasons
so grave that I hope a statement of
them may have some influence on the
minds of the patriotic and enlightened
men with whom the decision must ul
timately rest.
Objects of the Bill
The bill places all the people of the
tee States therein named under the
absolute domination of milit:u•y- rulers,
and the preamble undertakes to give
the reason upon which the measure is
based, and the ground upon which it
is justified. It declares that there ex
ist in those States no legal govern
ments, and no adequate protection for
life or property, and asserts the ilexes.
say of enforcing peace and good order
within their limits. Is this true as
matter of fact ?
It is denied that the States in ques
tion have each of them an actual goy.
ornment, with all the powers execu
tive, judicial and legislative, which
properly belong to a free State. They
are organized like the other States of
the Union, and like them, they make,
administer and execute the laws which
concern their domestic affairs. An ex.
iiting; 'lc facto government, exercising
such facetious as these, is itself a law
of the State upon all matters within
its juri,:dietion. Te pronounce the su
preme law making power of an estab
li,,hed State illegal is to say that law
itself is unlawful.
11714 Th? S9uth has Done.
The provisions which these govern
ments have made for the preservation
of order, the suppression of crime, and
the redress of private injuries; are in
substance and principle the same as
those which prevail in the Northern
States and in other civilized countries.
They certainly have not succeeded in
preventing the commission of all crime,
nor has this been accomplished any
where in the world. There, as well aS
elsewhere, offenders sometimes escape
for want LA vigorous prosecution, and
occasionally, perhaps, by the ineffi
ciency of courts, or tine prejudices of
jurors. It is undoubtedly true that
these evils have been much increased
and aggravated, North and South,- by
the demoralizing: influences of civil
war, and by the rancorous passions
which the c.nitc:q. has engendered.
But that these people are maintaining
local governments for themselves,
winch habitually defeat the object of
all•governunent, and render their own
lives :Led property insecure, is in itself
utterly improbable, and the averment
of the bill to that effect, is not support
ed by any evidence which has come to
my knowledge All the information I
have on the subject convinces me that
the masses of the Southern people and
those who control their public acts,
while they entertain diverse opinions
on questions of Federal policy, are
completely united in the effort to re
organize their society on the basis of
peace, and to restore their mutual
prosperity as rapidly and as complete
ly as their circumstances Will permit.
The Real Design of Congress.
The bill, however, would seem to
ishe)w upon its face that the establish
ment of peace and good order is not its
object. The fifth section declares that
_preceding sections shall cease to
operate in any State whore certain
events shall have happened. These
events are :
First. The selection of delegates to
a State Convention by an election, at
which nogroes shall be allowed to vote.
Second. The formation of a State
Constitution by the convention so cho
Third. The insertion into the State
Constitution of a provision which will
secure the right of voting at all elec
tions to negroes, and to such white
men as may not be disfranchished for
rebellion or felony.
Fourth. The submission of the Con;
stitution for ratification to negroes and
white men not disfranchised, and its
actual ratification by their votes.
Fifth. The submission of the State
Constitution to Congress for examina
tion and approval, and the actual ap
proval of it by that body.
Sixth. The adoption of a certain
'amendment to the Federal Constitu
tion by a vote of the Legislature elect
ed under the new Constitution.
Seventh. The adoption of said amend
merit by a sufficient number of other
States to make it a part of the Consti
tution of the United States.
All these conditions must be fulfilled
before the people of any of these States
can be relieved from the bondage of
military domination; but when .they
are felfilled then immediately pains
arid penalties of the bill aro to. ease, no
matter whether theiebe peace and
order or not, and without any refer
ence to the security of life or property.
The excuse given for the bill in the
pr,:unble is admitted by the bill itself
nat—to ..real. The military rule
which it establishes is plainly to bo
used, not for any purpose of order or
for the prevention of crime, hut solely
as a meahs of coercing the people into
the adoption of principles and meas.
ures to which it - is known that they
aro opposed, and upon which they
have an undeniable right to exercise
their own judgment.
The Act Unconstitutional
I submit to Congress whether this
measure is not in its• whole character,
scope, and object, without, precedent
and without' authority, in palpable
conflict with the plainest provisions of
the Constitution, and utterly destruc
tive to those great principles of liberty
and humanity for which our ancestors
on both sides of the Atlantic have shed
so much blood and expended so much
The ten Stales named in the bill are
divided into live districts. lor each
districtan officer of the army not be
low the rank of Brigadier tieneral is
to be appointed to rule over the peo•
plc, and he is to be supported with an
efficient military force to enable him
to perform his duties and enrorce his
Those duties and that authority, as
defined by the third section of the bill,
aro "to protect all persons in their
rights of person and property, to sup
press insurrection, disorder, and vio
lence, and to punish, or cause to be
punished, all disturbers of the public
peace or criminals.
_Military Autocrats.'
-....,r I' If F \
The power thus given to the Como
manding officer over all the people or
each district is that of an absolute
monarch. His mere will is to take
the place of all law. The law of the
States is now the only rule applicable
to the subjects placed under his con
trol, and that is completely displaced
by the clause which declares all inter
ference of State auLhority to be null
and void.
lie alone is permitted to determine
what are rights of person or property,
and he may protect them in such way
as in his discretion may seem proper.
It places at his free disposal all the
lands and goods in his district, and ho
may distribute them without let or
hindrance to whom he pleases. Being
bound by no State law, and there be
ing no other law to regulate the sub
ject, he may make a criminal code of
his own, and make it as bloody as any
recorded in history, or he can re:Servo
the privilege of acting upon the im
pulse of his private passions in each
case that arises. Ile is bound by no
rules of evidence; there is indeed no
provision by which he is authoriked or
required to take any evidence at all.
Everything is a crime which he choos
es to call so, and all persons are con
demned whom he pronounces to be
guilty. lie is not bound to keep any
record or make any report of his pro
ceedings. Ile may arrest his victims
wherever he finds them, without war
rant, accusation, or proof of probable
cause. If he gives them a trial before
he inflicts the panlshment, he gives of
his grace and money not because ho is
commanded so to (10.
NO Trial Allowed.
To a casual reader of the bill, it might
seem that some kind of trial was scout
ed by it to persons accused of crime,
bat such is not the case. The ofilcer
"may allow local civil tribunals to try
offenders ;" but, of course, this does
not require that he shall do so. It any
State or Federal court presumes to ex
ercise its legal jurisdictiou by the trial
of a inalefactOr without Twis special per
mission, he can break it up and punish
the judges and jurors as being them
selves malefactors. lie can save his
friends from justice, and despoil his
enemies contrary to justice.
It is also prtivitled that "Ho shall
have power to orgnoizo tnilitary com
missions or tribunals."
But this power he is not commanded
to exercise. It is merely permissive,
and is to be used only when in his
judgment it may be necessary for the
trial of offenders. Even if the sen
tence of a commission was made a pre
requisite to the punishment of a party
it would be scarcely the slightest check
upon the officer, who has authority to
organize it as be pleaSes, prescribe its
mode of proceeding, appoint its mem
bers front among his own subordinates,
and revise all its decisions. Instead of
mitigating the harshness of his single
will . such a tribunal would be used
much more probably to divide the re
sponsibility of making it more cruel
and unjust.
Sham Restraints
Several provisions., dictated by the
humanity of Congress, have been in.
sorted in the bill apparently to restrain
the power of the commanding officer,
but it seems to me that they Are of no
avail for that purpose. The fonrth
section provides:
First. That trials shall not be un
necessarily delayed ; but I think I have
shown that the power is given to pun
ish without trial, and, if so, this pro
vision is practically inopert.tive.
S•icond. Cruel or unusual punish
ment is not to be inflicted ; but who is
to decide what is cruel and what is un.
usual ? The words have acquired a le
gal meaning by long use in the courts.
Can it he expected that military ofli•
ccrs will understand or follow a rule
expressed in language so purely tech•
ideal, and not pertaining, in the least
degree; ;to their' profession ? If not,
then each officer may define cruelty
according to his own temper, and if it
is not usual, ho will inake it usual.
Corporeal punishment, imprisonment,
the gag, the hall and chain, and the
almost insupportable forms of torture
invented for military punishment, lie
within the range of choice.
Third. The sentence of a commis
sion is not to be executed without be
ing approved by the commander, if it
affects life or liberty, and a sentence
of death must be approved by the Pres
ident. This applies to cases in which
there has been a trial and a sentence.
I take it to be clear under this bill
that the military commander may con
demn to death without even the form.
of a trial by a military commission ; so
that the life of the condemned may de
pend upon the. will of two men instead
of one.
IL is plain that the authority hero
given to the military officer amounts
to absolute despotism. But to make
it still unendurable, the bill provides
that it may be delegated to as many
subordinates as he chooses to appoint,
for it declares titat he shall "punish or
catiso to be punished."
Absolute Despotism Revived.
Such a power has not been wielded
by any monarch in England for more
than five hundred years. In all that
Lime, no people who speak the English
language have borne such servitude.
It reduces the whole population of the
ten States—all persons of every color,
sex and condition, and every stranger
- within their limits to the most abject
and degrading 'slavery. No master
ever had a control so absolute over his
slave as this bill gives to the military
°dicers Over both white :Ind colored
It may be answered to this that the
officers of the army are too magnani
mous, just and humane to oppress and
trample upon a subjugated people,
do not doubt that army officers ara as
well entitled to Lids kind of confidence
its :my other class of men. But the
history of the world has been written
in vain if' it does not teach its lliat
rest rained authority can IlitVol . In' titrt.
ly trusted 111 human hands. It is al.
most sure to be more or less abused un
der a ny circums tan ccs,:t nd ithus al ways
resulted in gross tyranny where the
rulers, who exercised it, aro strangers
to their subjects,and come among them
as the representatives of a distant
Power, and more especially when the
Power that sends them is unfriendly.
tiovernments closely resenddin!f, that,
hero proposed have been fairly tried
in Hungary and Poland, and the snf
lering endured by those peoplo roused
the sympathies of the entire world, it
was tried in trelantl, and though tent
pored at licst by principles or English
law, it gave birth to cruelties so atro
cious that they 81'0 never recounted
without just indignation. The Preneli
Convention armed its deputies with
this power, and sola then' (0 OW Hon I h.
Urn delnirt MOWS Or the republic. The
massacres, murders nod oth e r atroci
ties which they committed, show what
the passions oldie ablest moll in rho
most civili•rcd society will tempt them
to do when wholly unrestrained by law,
The Experietwo of Past.
The men of our race, in every age,
have struggled to tie up the hands 01
their Government and keep them with•
in the law, because their own experi
ence of all mankind taught them that
rulers could not be relied on to concede
those rights which they were not le
gally bound to respect. The head of
a great empire has sometimes govern
ed it with a mild and paternal sway,
but the kindness of an irresponsible de
puty never yields what the law dons
not extort from him. Between such
a toaster and the people, subjected to
his domination, there can be nothing
but enmity; ho punishes theta if they
resist his authority, and it they sub
mit to it ho hates them fur their ser
Constitutionality of the Act Discussed.
T. come now to a question which is,
if possible, still more important. Have
we the power to establish and carry
into execution a measure like . this ?
answer, certainly not, if we derive our
authority from. the Constitution, and if
we are bound by the limitations which
it imposes.
This proposition is perfectly clear
that no branch of the Federal Govern
ment, executive, legislative or judicial,
can have any just powers except those
which it derives through, and exerch
sea under the organic law of the Union.
Outside of the Constitution, wo have
no legal authority inure than private
citizens, and without it we have only
so much as that instrument gives us.
This broad principle limits all our
functions, and applies to all subjects.
It protects not only the citizens of
States which are within the Union, hut
it shields every human being who
comes or is brought under our juris
We, have no right to do in one place
more than in another that which the
Constitution says we shall not do at
all. If; therefore, the Southern States
wore, in truth, out of the Union, wo
could not treat their people in a way
which the, fundamental law forbids.
I,:irect of the Union Victories
Some persons assume that the sue
cuss of our arms in crushing the oppo
sition which was made in some of tho
States to the execution of the Federal
law, reduced those States and all their
people, the innocent as well as the
guilty, to the condition of vassalage,
and gave us a power over them which
the Constitution does not bestow, or
define, or limit. No fallacy can be
more transparent, than this. Our Vic;
tories subjected the insurgents to legal
obedience, not to the yoke of an arbi
trary despotism. When an absolute
sovereign reduces 'his rebellious sub
jects, ho may deal with them accord
ing to his pi WISH re, because he had that
power before. But when a. limited
monarch puts down ail insurrection,
he must still govern according to law.
If an insurrection should take place in
one of our States, against the sover
eignty of the State government, and
end in the overthrow of those who
planned it, would that take away the
rights of all the people of the counties
where it was favored, by a part or
a majority of the population?
they, for suoh a reason, be wholly out:
!awed and deprived of their represent,
talon in the Legislature ? I have al
ways contended that the Government
of the United States was sovereign
within its Constitutional sphere, that
it executed its laws like the States
themselves by applying its coercive
power directly to individuals, and that
it could put down insurrection with
the same effect as a State, and no oth
er. The opposite doctrine is the worst
heresy of those who advocated seces
sion, and cannot be agreed to without
admitting that heresy to be right. in
vasion, insurrection, rebellion, and do
mestic violence, tci t anticipated when
the Government was framed, and the
moans of repelling and suppressing
them were wisely provided for in the
Constitution ; but it was not thought
necessary to declare that the States in
which they might occur should be ex
pelled from the Union.
Review of Fortner Insurrections
Rebellions, which wore invariably
suppressed, occurred prior to that out
of which these questions grow. But
the States continued to exist, and the
Union remained unbroken. In Massa
chusetts, in Pennsylvania, in Rhode
Island, and in Now York, at different
periods of our history, violent and
armed opposition to the United States
was carried on. But the relations of
those States with the Federal Govern
ment were not supposed to Uo inter
rupted or changed thereby, after the
rebellious portions of their population
wore defeated and put down. It is
true that in these earlier cases there
was no formal expression of a wtermi•
nation to withdraw from the L nion.—
But it is also true, that in the Southern
States the ordinances of secession were
treated by all the friends of the Union
as mere nullities, and aro now acknow
ledged to be so by the States them
selves. If we admit that they had any
force or validity, or that they did, in
fact, take the States in, when they
were passed out of the Union,we sweep
from under our feet all the grounds up
on which wo stand in justifying the use
of Federal force to maintain the integ
rity of the Government. This is a bill
passed by Congress in time of peace.—
There is not, in any ono of the States,
brought under its operation, either war
or insurrection. The laws of the States,
nod of the Federal Government, aro all
in undisturbed and harmonious opera
tion. The courts, State and Federal,
are open and in the full exercise of their
proper authority. Over every State,
comprised in these five military dis
tricts, life, liberty and property arose•
cured by State laws and Federal laws,
and the National Constitution is every
where in formand everywhere obeyed.
What, then, is the ground on which this
bill proceeds? The title of the bill an
nounces that it is intended for the more
ellicion t government of these ten States.
Lt is roei led by way of preamble, that
no legal State Governments, nor ade
quate protection for life or property,
exist in those States,
and that peace
and good order should be thus enforced.
.NO Foundation for _Martial Law.
Thu first thing which arrests atten-
Lion upon these recitals which prepare
the way for martial law. is this : That
ho only foundation upon which mar-
Gal law can exist, under our form of
governmentris not stated or so much
pretended : actual war, foreign inva-
:don, domestic insurrection ; none of
t hese appear, and none of' these in fact
exist. It is not oven recited that any
sort of war or insurrectiJn is threaten
ed. Let us pause here to consider, up
on this question of constitutional law
and the power of Congress, a recent
decision of the Supreme Court of the
United States in cx parte Miligan, I
will first quote from the opinion of the
majority of the Court: "Martial law
cannot arise from a threatened inva
sion. The necessity must be actual
and present, the invasion real, such as
effectually closes the courts and depo
ses the civil authority." But this bill,
in time of peace, makes martial law
operate as though we were in actual
war, and become the cause instead of
the consequence of the abrogation of
civil authority. One more quotation :
"It follows from what has been said on
this subject that there are occasions
when martial law can be properly ap
plied. If in foreign invasion or civil
war the Courts are actually closed, and
it is impossible to administer criminal
justice, according to law, then on the
theatre of active military operations,
whore war really prevails, there is a
necessity to furnish a substitute for the
civil authority thusoverthrown, to pre
serve the safety of the army and soci
ety; and as no power is left but the mil
tary, it is allowed to govern by martial
rule until the laws can have their free
course." I now quote from the opinion
of the minority of the Court, delivered
by Chief Justice Chase :—"We by no
means assert that Congress can estab
lish and apply the laws of war where
no war has been declared, or exists.—
Where peace exists, the laws of peace
must prevail." This is sufficiently ex
plicit. Peace exits in all the territory
to which this bill applies. It asserts a
power in Congyess in time of peace to
set aside the hews - of peace and to sub
stitute the laws of war. The minority
concurring with the majority - declares
that Congress does not possess that
power. Again, and if possible, more
emphatically, the Chief Justice with re
markable clearness and condensation,
sums up the whole matter as follows :
'There are, under the Constitution,
three kinds of military jurisdiction, one
to be exercised, both ill peace and.war,
another to be exercised in time of for
eign war, without the boundaries of the
United States, or in time of rebellion
and civil war, within the States or Dis
tricts occupied by rebels treated as
belligerents and a third to bo exercised
in time of invasion or insurrection
within the limits of the United States,
or during rebellion within the limits of'
the States maintaining adhesion to the
National Government, when the publics
danger requires its exercise. The first
of these may be called jurisdiction tin
der military law, and is found in acts
of Congress prescribing rules and arti
cles of war, or otherwise providing for
the government of the national forces.
The second may be distinguished as
military government, superseding, as
far as may be deemed expedient, the
local law,.and exercised by the milita
ry commander, under the direction of
the President, with the express or im
plied sanction of Congress. While the
third may be denominated martial law
proper, and is called into action by
Congress, or, temporarily, when the at
tion of Congress cannot be invited, and
in tho case of justifying or excusing pe
ril, by the President ; in times of insur
rection or invasion ; or of civil or for
eign war within districts or localities
where ordinary law no longer ade
quately secures public safety and pri
vate rights." It will be observed that
of the three kjnds of military jurisdic
tion, which can be exert ised or created
under our Constitution, there is hut
one that can prevail in time of peace,
and that is the code of laws enacted
by Congress for the government of the
national forces. That body of military
law has no application to the citizen,
nor oven to the citizen soldier enrolled
in the militia in time of peace. But
this bill is not a part of that sort of mil
itary law, for that applies only to the
soldier, and not to the citizen, while
contrariwise the military law provided
by this bill applies only to the citizen
and not to the soldier.
An unlawful Exercise of Judicial power.
I need not say to the representatives
of the American potpie that their Con
stitution forbids the exercise of judicial
power in any way but ono, that is, by
the ordained and established Courts.
It is equally well known that in all
criminal cases a trial by jury is made
indispensable by the express words of
that instrument. I will not enlarge on
the inestimable value of the right thus
secured to every free man, or speak of
the danger to public liberty in all parts
of the country, which must ensue from
a denial ofit anywhere or upon any pre
tense. A very recent decision of the
Supremo Court has traced the history,
vindicated the dignity,andmade known
the value of this great privilege, so
clearly that nothing more is needed.--
To what extent a violation of it might
bo excused in time of war or poldir dam
ger, may admit of discussion. But m
are providing now _for a time of pro
found peace, when there is not an arm
ed soldier within our borders, except
thOse who are in the service of the gov
ernment. It is in such a condition of
things that an
. act of Congress is pro
posed,whiah, if carried out, would deny
a trial by the lawful courts and juries
to nine millions of American citizens
and to their posterity for an indefinite
period. It seems to be scarcely possi
ble that any one should seriously be
lieve this consistent with a constitution
which declares in simple, plain, and un
ambiguous language that all persons
shall have that right, and . that no per.
son shall ever, in any case, be deprived
of it. The Constitutioti also forbids
tho arrest of the citizen, without judi
cial warant founded on probable cause.
This bill authorizes an arrest without
warrant, at the pleasure of a military
commander. The Constitution de
clares that "n o person shall be held to
answer for a capital or otherwise infa
mous crime, unless on presentment by
a grand jury." This bill holds every
person not a soldier answerable for all
crimes and 'all charges without any
presentment. The Constitution de
clares that "no person shall be depriv
ed of life, liberty or property, without
duo process of law. This bill sets
aside all process of law, and makes the
citizen answerable, in his person and
property, to the will of one man, and
as to his life, to the will of two. Fi
nally, the Constitution declares that—
'The privilege of the writ of habeas
corpus shall not be suspended unless
when in case of rebellion or invasion,
the public safety may require it ;"
whereas tnis bill declares martial law,
which of itself suspends this great writ
in time of peace, and authorizes the
military to make the arrest, and give
to the prisoner only one privilege, and
that is a trial without unnecessary de
! lay. He has no hope of release from
custody, except the hope, such as it is,
of release by acquittal before a milita
ry commission. Tho United States aro
bound to guarantee to each State a re
publican form of government.
Whbt the framers of the Constitution in-
Can it be pretended that this obli
gation is not palpably broken if wo
carry out a measure like this, which
wipes away every vestige of republi
can government in ten States, and
pdts the life,
property, liberty and
honor of all the people in each of them
under the dominion of a single per Son
clothed with unlimited authority ?
Tho Parliament of England exorcising
the omnipotent power which it claim
ed, was accustomed to pass bills of at
tainder ; that is to say, it would con
vict men of treason and other crimes
by legislative enactment. The person
accused had a hearing, sometimes a
patient and fair one, but generally
party prejudice prevailed instead of
Justice. it often became necessary for
Parliament to acknowledge its error,
and reverse its own action. The fa
thers of our country determined that
no such thing should occur here. They
withheld the power from Congress,and
thus forbade its exercise by that body;
and they provided in the Constitution
that no States should pass any bill of
attainder. It is ; therefore, impossible
for any person in this country to be
constitutionally punished for any crime
by a legislative proceeding of any sort;
nevertheless, here is a bill of attainder
against nine millions of people at once.
It is based upon an accusation so
vague as to be scarcely intelligible, and
found to be true upon no creditable
evidence. Not one of the nine millions
was heard in his own defbnce. The
representatives of the doomed parties
wore excluded from all participation
in the trial. The conviction is, to be
followed by the most ignominious pun
ishment ever inflicted on largo masses
of men. It disfranchises thorn by hun
dreds of thousandS and degrades thorn
all, even those who are admitted to bo
guiltless from the rank of freemen to
the condition of slaves. The purpose
and object of the bill, the general in
tent which provados it from beginning
to end, is to change the entire structure
and character of the State Governments,
and to compel them by force to the
adoption of organic laws and regu
lations which they aro unwilling to
accept, if left to themselves. The ne
groes have not asked for the privilege
of voting; the vast majority of them
have no idea what it means. This bill
not only thrusts it into their hands, but
compels them, as well as the whites,
to use it in a particular way.
Afriemzing the South.
If they do not form a Constitution
with prescribed articles in it, and af
terwards elect a legislature which will
act upon certain measures in a proscri
bed way, neither black nor white can
be relieved from the slavery which the
bill imposes upon them. Without paus
ing to consider the policy or impolicy
of Africanizing the Southern part of
our territory, I would simply ask the
attention of Congress to that manifest,
well known and universally acknowl
edged rule of Constitutional la w,whic .
declares that the Federal Government
has no jurisdiction, authority or pow
er to regulate such subjects for any
State. To force the right of suffrage
out of the hands of the white peo
ple, and into the hands of the ne
groes, is an arbitrary violation of
this principle. This bill imposes
martial law at once, and its ope
rations will begin as soon as the
general and his troops can be put in
place. The dread alternative between
its harsh ru'e and compliance with
the terms of this measure, is not sus
pended, nor the people afforded time
for deliberation. The bill says to them
take martial law first; then deliberate.
And when they have done all that
this measure requires them to do, oth
er conditions and contingencies, over
which they have no control, yet re
main to be fulfilled ; before they can
ho relieved from martial law, another
Congress must first approve the Con
stitutions made in conformity with
the will of this Congress, and must de
clare these States entitled to represen
tation in both Houses. The whole
question thus remains open and unset
tled, and must again occupy the atten
tion of Congress ; and in the mean
time the agitation which now prevails
will continuo to disturb all portions of
the- people.
A Dilemma for the Radicals . . . •
The bill also denies the legality of
the governments of tho ton States
which participated in tho ratification
of the amendments to the Federal
Conf , tit ul ion rhtdi: , l,ing shvory rorrvor
Stmtos, and practically excludes them
from the Union. If this assumption
of the bill be correct, their concurrence
cannot be considered as having been
legally given ; and the important fact
is made to appear that the consent of
three-fourths of the States, the requis
ite number, has not been constitution
ally obtained to the ratification of that
amendment, thus -leaving the question
of slavery where it stood before the
amendment was officially declared to
hai7o become a part of the Constitu
tion. That the measure proposed by
this bill does violate the Constitution
in the particulars mentioned, and 'in
many other ways, which I forbear to
enumerate, is too clear to admit of the
least doubt.
Why the Constitution should be obeyed.
It only remains to consider whet her
the injunctions of that instrument
ought to be obeyed or not. I think
they onght to be obeyed, for reasons
which I will proceed to give as briefly
as possible. In the first place, it is the
only system of free'government which
we can hope to have as a nation when
it ceases to be the rule of our conduct;
we may, perhaps, take our choice be
tween complete anarchy, a. consolida
ted despotism, and a total dissolution
of the Union. But National liberty,
regulated by law, will have passed be
yond our reach. It is the best frame of
government the world ever saw ; no
other is, or can be, so well adapted to
the genius, habits, or wants of the
American people, combining the
strength of a great empire, with un
speakable blessings of local solf-goV
ernment, having a central power to
defend the general interests, and' re
cognizing the authority of the States
as the guardians of industrial rights,
It is "the sheet anchor of our safety
abroad, and our peace at home." It
was ordained "To form a more per
fect Union, establish justice, insure do
mestic tranquillity, proinoto the gen
eral welfare, provide for the common
defense, and secure the blessings of lib
erty to ourselves and to our posterity."
These groat ends have been . attained
heretofore, and will he again by faith
ful obedience to it ; but they are cer
tain to be lost if we treat with disre
gard its sacred obligations. It was to
punish the gross crime of defying the
Constitution, and to vindicate its su
preme authority, that - we carried or a
bloody war of four years duration.
How to treat Rebels
Shall we now acknowledge that we
sacrificed a million of 'lives, and ex
pended billions of treasure, to enforce
a Constitution which is not worthy of
respect and - preserved dn. Those who
advocated the right of secession, alleg
ed in their own justification that wp
had no regard for law, 'and that their
rights of property, life and liberty
would not be safe under the Constitu
tion, as administered by us. Elko now
verity this assertion, we prove that
they were in truth and in fact fighting
for their liberty. And instead of brand
big their leaders with the dishonoring
name of traitors against a righteous
and legal government,we elevate them
in history to the rank of self-sacrificing
patriots ; consecrate them to the ad
miration of the world, and place
them by the side ot Washington,llam p
den and Sydney. No. Lot us leave them
to the infamy they deserve. Punish
them as they should be punished, ac
cording to law,and take upon ourselves
no share of the odium which they
should boar alone. It is apart of pub
lic history, which can never be forgot
ten that both Houses of Congress, in
July, 1861, declared, in the form of a
solemn resolution, that the war was,
and should be carried an for no purpose
of subjugation, but solely to inforce the
Constitution and laws; and that when
this was yielded by the parties in re
bellion, the contest Bh d cease, with
the Constitutional rights of the States,
of individuals, unimpaired.
This resolution was adopted, and
sent forth to the world, unanimously,
by the Senate, and with only two dis
senting voices by the House. It was
accepted by the friends of the Union,
in the South. as well as in the North,
as expressing honestly and truly the
object of the war. On the faith of it,
many thousands of persons, in both
sections, gave their lives and their for
tunes to the cause. To repudiate it
now, by refusing to the States and to
the individuals within them, the rights
which the Constitution and laws of the
Union would secure to them, is a
breach of our plighted honor, for
which I can imagine no excuse, and to
which I cannot voluntarily beam° a
The evils which spring from the
unsettled state of our Government
will be acknowledged by' all. Com
mercial intercourse is impeded; capi
tal is in constant peril ; public securi
ties fluctuate in value; pence itself is
not secure, and the sense of moral and
political duty is impaired, To avert
these calamities from our country it is
imperatively required that we should
immediately decide upon some course
of administration which can be stead•
fastly adhered to.
Stand by the Constitution.
I am thoroughly convinced that any
settlement, or comproanse;or plan of
action which is'inconSistent. With the
principles of the Constitution, will not
only be unavailing, but mischievous,
that it will but maltiply the present evils
instead of removing them. The Consti
tution in its whole integrity and vig
or throughout the length and breadth
of the land is the best of all compro,
mises. Besides, our duty does not, in
my judgment, leave us a choice be
tween that and any other.
I believe that it contains the reme
dy that is so much needed, and that
if the co ordinate branches of the Gov
ernment would unite upon its provie•
ions, they would be found broad
enough and strong enough to sustain,
in time of peace, tho nation which
they bore safely through the ordeal
of a protracted civil war. Among
the most sacred guarantees of that
instrument aro those which declare
that "Each State shall have at least
ono representative," and that "no
State, without its consent, shall be do.
privod of its eqaul Suffrage in the Sen
ate." Each .louse is made the s'Judge
of the elections, returns; and qualifi
cations of its own members," and may
"with the concurrence of two thirds
expel a member." Thus, as hereto
fore urged, in the admission of Sena
tors and Representatives from any
and all the States, there can be no
just grounds of apprehension that per
sons who are disloyal will be clothed
could pot happen when the Constitu,
tion and laws are enforced by a vigi
lant and faithful Congress: When a
Senator or RepresentatiVe presentEfhis
certificate of election, he May at once
be admitted or rejected; or should there
be any question as to his eligibility,.
his credentials may be referred
vestigation to the appropriate Coda.
mittee. If admitted to a seat, it must
be upon evidence satisfactorY to the ,
House of which' he thus - beeotries . a.
member, that he possesses the requi
site constitutional and legal qualifica
tions. If refused admission, as a 'merit
ber, for want of due allegiance to the
government,and returned to his conetit
uonts, they are admonished that none
but persons loyal to the UnitettStates
will be allowed a voice in the legislative
councils of the nation, and the politiCal
power and moral influence of Con - stews
are thus effectively exerted in the inter
ests of loyalty to the Government, and
fidelity to the Union. And is it not far
better that the work of restoration
should be accomplished by simple C 0.4-
pliance with the plain requirements
of the Constitution, than by a recourse
to measures, which, in effect,:,destroy
the-States, and threaten the subversion
of the General Government. ' '
drone but Loyal Men to be in ,Corigres.B
All that is necessary to settle', this
but important question without
further agitation or delay is a willing
ness on the part of all to sustain the
Constitution and carry its provisions
into practical opera Lion. If to-morrow
either branch of..Cougress would_ de-.
dare that upOnhe presentation of their
credentials, members constitutionally
elected and loyal to the General Gov
ernment, would be.admitted to seats in
Congress, while all others would be ex
cludd, and their places remain vacant
until the selection by the people of loy
al, qualified persons, and if at theism&
time assurances wore given that this
policy would be continued Until 01 the
States were represented in Congress,
it would send a thrill of joy through
out the entire laud, as indicating the
inauguration of a system which must.
, speedily bring tranquility to the public
While we are legislating - upon sub
jects which are of groat importance to
the whole people, and which must af
feet all ptirts of the country ; not only.
during the life of the present genera-
Lion, but for ages to come, we should
remember that all men are entitled . rit.
least to a hearing in the councils Which
decide upon the destiny of themsolVea
and their children: At present ten
States are denied representation,: and
when the Fortieth Congress assembles
on the 4th day of the, present month,
sixteen States will be withonta voice in
the House of RepreSentatives. This
grave fact, with the important ques
tions before us, should induce us to.
pause in a career of legislation which
looking solely to the attainment of po
litical ends, fails to consider the rights
it transgresses,the law which it violates, ;
or the Constitution which it imperils.
Washington, March 2d, 1867.
1) OHM & HILLER have jOt.receiv,
ed nt their new stereenother invoice df-Ladie3 and
or the very latest styles, Which they are now offering to
the public at the most 'reasonable rates. Their stock
consists of Silks, French and American Morinoa, Farta
and Alpaca Plaids, Furs, DoLalnes, Jaconet Barred, Cam—
brie, Bleached and unbleached Muslins, Cloths, Cass!
mores, Satinets, Jeans, 91:aisls, Flannels, Calicoes, Hoods,
Lints and Caps, Boots and Shoes, Wood ankl.Wllloar.vrare,
Carpets and Oil Cloths, Family Groceries, hod the largest.
and best assortment of
in "ye ancient borough
All thoso desirous of getting bargains will not fail to
stop in and see us at our New Store south meat corner of
the Diamond, Fisher'lield stand,) nintiltgdon, Pa,
Manufacturer of all kinds of work In his lino, moil%
which the
Will find Threshing 3lachines, Plowa, Sled solos, T,lettle.S
itc. The
Will find Round 3landrils, hollow Anvils, block and rol
ler Tiro benders, Tire irons, sled and aleighaoles, Wagon,
boxes, ,te. Tho
Can have all kings of Machinery. Tho
Can have door and window sills and Lintels, sash weights
cellar window grates, ryll ekes, porch stand s, armor for
rain spouts, chimney caps, paventorit castings, for coal
and weod . pellars, heaters for warming privnto dwelling%
and public buildings, doors and frames for bnko ovens,
iron railing for verandahs, porticoes, balconies, and fen
cos of all kinds.
Particginr 'Mention paid to fencing grave lots. every
body can have threshing machine, plow and store repairs
and all kiiglo jran gtid prass castings. . .
, . .
New Fllfilltlife
TEIE undersigned 'would respectfully
..1„. announce that he manufactures and keeps constantly
on band a largo and splendid assortment of
Windsor and cano seat chairs. cupboards, gilt and rose-.
wood moulding for mirror and picture frames, and a vari
ety of articles not mentioned, at prices that cannot fail to
be satilfactory.
lie is also agent for the well known Bailey A Decamp
patent spring Iled Bottom.
+rho public are invited to call and examine his stock
before purchasing elsewhere.
Work and solo, room on. street, near Smith, one
door west Yenter's
Hon tingdon, Aug. I, SGG
The undersigned balling now entered into the
W"l•_p Alexandria brewery:the public are inforrneil
1 , / le• will lin nt all times to Ill!
Tiij.S. N. C.)L1)1.11.
- Atexiindrith Oct.: - .3.1886-tf. • • ' •