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The Writings of Abraham Lincoln, Complete by Abraham Lincoln

Part 12 out of 36

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me to go over his whole ground. I can but take up some of the
points that he has dwelt upon, and employ my half-hour specially
on them.

The first thing I have to say to you is a word in regard to Judge
Douglas's declaration about the "vulgarity and blackguardism" in
the audience, that no such thing, as he says, was shown by any
Democrat while I was speaking. Now, I only wish, by way of reply
on this subject, to say that while I was speaking, I used no
"vulgarity or blackguardism" toward any Democrat.

Now, my friends, I come to all this long portion of the Judge's
speech,--perhaps half of it,--which he has devoted to the various
resolutions and platforms that have been adopted in the different
counties in the different Congressional districts, and in the
Illinois legislature, which he supposes are at variance with the
positions I have assumed before you to-day. It is true that many
of these resolutions are at variance with the positions I have
here assumed. All I have to ask is that we talk reasonably and
rationally about it. I happen to know, the Judge's opinion to
the contrary notwithstanding, that I have never tried to conceal
my opinions, nor tried to deceive any one in reference to them.
He may go and examine all the members who voted for me for United
States Senator in 1855, after the election of 1854. They were
pledged to certain things here at home, and were determined to
have pledges from me; and if he will find any of these persons
who will tell him anything inconsistent with what I say now, I
will resign, or rather retire from the race, and give him no more
trouble. The plain truth is this: At the introduction of the
Nebraska policy, we believed there was a new era being introduced
in the history of the Republic, which tended to the spread and
perpetuation of slavery. But in our opposition to that measure
we did not agree with one another in everything. The people in
the north end of the State were for stronger measures of
opposition than we of the central and southern portions of the
State, but we were all opposed to the Nebraska doctrine. We had
that one feeling and that one sentiment in common. You at the
north end met in your conventions and passed your resolutions.
We in the middle of the State and farther south did not hold such
conventions and pass the same resolutions, although we had in
general a common view and a common sentiment. So that these
meetings which the Judge has alluded to, and the resolutions he
has read from, were local, and did not spread over the whole
State. We at last met together in 1886, from all parts of the
State, and we agreed upon a common platform. You, who held more
extreme notions, either yielded those notions, or, if not wholly
yielding them, agreed to yield them practically, for the sake of
embodying the opposition to the measures which the opposite party
were pushing forward at that time. We met you then, and if there
was anything yielded, it was for practical purposes. We agreed
then upon a platform for the party throughout the entire State of
Illinois, and now we are all bound, as a party, to that platform.

And I say here to you, if any one expects of me--in case of my
election--that I will do anything not signified by our Republican
platform and my answers here to-day, I tell you very frankly that
person will be deceived. I do not ask for the vote of any one
who supposes that I have secret purposes or pledges that I dare
not speak out. Cannot the Judge be satisfied? If he fears, in
the unfortunate case of my election, that my going to Washington
will enable me to advocate sentiments contrary to those which I
expressed when you voted for and elected me, I assure him that
his fears are wholly needless and groundless. Is the Judge
really afraid of any such thing? I'll tell you what he is afraid
of. He is afraid we'll all pull together. This is what alarms
him more than anything else. For my part, I do hope that all of
us, entertaining a common sentiment in opposition to what appears
to us a design to nationalize and perpetuate slavery, will waive
minor differences on questions which either belong to the dead
past or the distant future, and all pull together in this
struggle. What are your sentiments? If it be true that on the
ground which I occupy--ground which I occupy as frankly and
boldly as Judge Douglas does his,--my views, though partly
coinciding with yours, are not as perfectly in accordance with
your feelings as his are, I do say to you in all candor, go for
him, and not for me. I hope to deal in all things fairly with
Judge Douglas, and with the people of the State, in this contest.
And if I should never be elected to any office, I trust I may go
down with no stain of falsehood upon my reputation,
notwithstanding the hard opinions Judge Douglas chooses to
entertain of me.

The Judge has again addressed himself to the Abolition tendencies
of a speech of mine made at Springfield in June last. I have so
often tried to answer what he is always saying on that melancholy
theme that I almost turn with disgust from the discussion,--from
the repetition of an answer to it. I trust that nearly all of
this intelligent audience have read that speech. If you have, I
may venture to leave it to you to inspect it closely, and see
whether it contains any of those "bugaboos" which frighten Judge

The Judge complains that I did not fully answer his questions.
If I have the sense to comprehend and answer those questions, I
have done so fairly. If it can be pointed out to me how I can
more fully and fairly answer him, I aver I have not the sense to
see how it is to be done. He says I do not declare I would in
any event vote for the admission of a slave State into the Union.
If I have been fairly reported, he will see that I did give an
explicit answer to his interrogatories; I did not merely say that
I would dislike to be put to the test, but I said clearly, if I
were put to the test, and a Territory from which slavery had been
excluded should present herself with a State constitution
sanctioning slavery,--a most extraordinary thing, and wholly
unlikely to happen,--I did not see how I could avoid voting for
her admission. But he refuses to understand that I said so, and
he wants this audience to understand that I did not say so. Yet
it will be so reported in the printed speech that he cannot help
seeing it.

He says if I should vote for the admission of a slave State I
would be voting for a dissolution of the Union, because I hold
that the Union cannot permanently exist half slave and half free.
I repeat that I do not believe this government can endure
permanently half slave and half free; yet I do not admit, nor
does it at all follow, that the admission of a single slave State
will permanently fix the character and establish this as a
universal slave nation. The Judge is very happy indeed at
working up these quibbles. Before leaving the subject of
answering questions, I aver as my confident belief, when you come
to see our speeches in print, that you will find every question
which he has asked me more fairly and boldly and fully answered
than he has answered those which I put to him. Is not that so?
The two speeches may be placed side by side, and I will venture
to leave it to impartial judges whether his questions have not
been more directly and circumstantially answered than mine.

Judge Douglas says he made a charge upon the editor of the
Washington Union, alone, of entertaining a purpose to rob the
States of their power to exclude slavery from their limits. I
undertake to say, and I make the direct issue, that he did not
make his charge against the editor of the Union alone. I will
undertake to prove by the record here that he made that charge
against more and higher dignitaries than the editor of the
Washington Union. I am quite aware that he was shirking and
dodging around the form in which he put it, but I can make it
manifest that he leveled his "fatal blow" against more persons
than this Washington editor. Will he dodge it now by alleging
that I am trying to defend Mr. Buchanan against the charge? Not
at all. Am I not making the same charge myself? I am trying to
show that you, Judge Douglas, are a witness on my side. I am not
defending Buchanan, and I will tell Judge Douglas that in my
opinion, when he made that charge, he had an eye farther north
than he has to-day. He was then fighting against people who
called him a Black Republican and an Abolitionist. It is mixed
all through his speech, and it is tolerably manifest that his eye
was a great deal farther north than it is to-day. The Judge says
that though he made this charge, Toombs got up and declared there
was not a man in the United States, except the editor of the
Union, who was in favor of the doctrines put forth in that
article. And thereupon I understand that the Judge withdrew the
charge. Although he had taken extracts from the newspaper, and
then from the Lecompton Constitution, to show the existence of a
conspiracy to bring about a "fatal blow," by which the States
were to be deprived of the right of excluding slavery, it all
went to pot as soon as Toombs got up and told him it was not
true. It reminds me of the story that John Phoenix, the
California railroad surveyor, tells. He says they started out
from the Plaza to the Mission of Dolores. They had two ways of
determining distances. One was by a chain and pins taken over
the ground. The other was by a "go-it-ometer,"--an invention of
his own,--a three-legged instrument, with which he computed a
series of triangles between the points. At night he turned to
the chain-man to ascertain what distance they had come, and found
that by some mistake he had merely dragged the chain over the
ground, without keeping any record. By the "go-it-ometer," he
found he had made ten miles. Being skeptical about this, he
asked a drayman who was passing how far it was to the Plaza. The
drayman replied it was just half a mile; and the surveyor put it
down in his book,--just as Judge Douglas says, after he had made
his calculations and computations, he took Toombs's statement. I
have no doubt that after Judge Douglas had made his charge, he
was as easily satisfied about its truth as the surveyor was of
the drayman's statement of the distance to the Plaza. Yet it is
a fact that the man who put forth all that matter which Douglas
deemed a "fatal blow" at State sovereignty was elected by the
Democrats as public printer.

Now, gentlemen, you may take Judge Douglas's speech of March 22,
1858, beginning about the middle of page 21, and reading to the
bottom of page 24, and you will find the evidence on which I say
that he did not make his charge against the editor of the Union
alone. I cannot stop to read it, but I will give it to the
reporters. Judge Douglas said:

"Mr. President, you here find several distinct propositions
advanced boldly by the Washington Union editorially, and
apparently authoritatively, and every man who questions any of
them is denounced as an Abolitionist, a Free-soiler, a fanatic.
The propositions are, first, that the primary object of all
government at its original institution is the protection of
persons and property; second, that the Constitution of the United
States declares that the citizens of each State shall be entitled
to all the privileges and immunities of citizens in the several
States; and that, therefore, thirdly, all State laws, whether
organic or otherwise, which prohibit the citizens of one State
from settling in another with their slave property, and
especially declaring it forfeited, are direct violations of the
original intention of the Government and Constitution of the
United States; and, fourth, that the emancipation of the slaves
of the Northern States was a gross outrage on the rights of
property, in as much as it was involuntarily done on the part of
the owner.

"Remember that this article was published in the Union on the
17th of November, and on the 18th appeared the first article
giving the adhesion of the Union to the Lecompton Constitution.
It was in these words:

"'KANSAS AND HER CONSTITUTION.--The vexed question is settled.
The problem is solved. The dead point of danger is passed. All
serious trouble to Kansas affairs is over and gone...."

"And a column, nearly, of the same sort. Then, when you come to
look into the Lecompton Constitution, you find the same doctrine
incorporated in it which was put forth editorially in the Union.
What is it?

"'ARTICLE 7, Section i. The right of property is before and
higher than any constitutional sanction; and the right of the
owner of a slave to such slave and its increase is the same and
as invariable as the right of the owner of any property

"Then in the schedule is a provision that the Constitution may be
amended after 1864 by a two-thirds vote.

"'But no alteration shall be made to affect the right of property
in the ownership of slaves.'

"It will be seen by these clauses in the Lecompton Constitution
that they are identical in spirit with this authoritative article
in the Washington Union of the day previous to its indorsement of
this Constitution.

"When I saw that article in the Union of the 17th of November,
followed by the glorification of the Lecompton Constitution on
the 18th of November, and this clause in the Constitution
asserting the doctrine that a State has no right to prohibit
slavery within its limits, I saw that there was a fatal blow
being struck at the sovereignty of the States of this Union."

Here he says, "Mr. President, you here find several distinct
propositions advanced boldly, and apparently authoritatively."
By whose authority, Judge Douglas? Again, he says in another
place, "It will be seen by these clauses in the Lecompton
Constitution that they are identical in spirit with this
authoritative article." By whose authority,--who do you mean to
say authorized the publication of these articles? He knows that
the Washington Union is considered the organ of the
Administration. I demand of Judge Douglas by whose authority he
meant to say those articles were published, if not by the
authority of the President of the United States and his Cabinet?
I defy him to show whom he referred to, if not to these high
functionaries in the Federal Government. More than this, he says
the articles in that paper and the provisions of the Lecompton
Constitution are "identical," and, being identical, he argues
that the authors are co-operating and conspiring together. He
does not use the word "conspiring," but what other construction
can you put upon it? He winds up:

"When I saw that article in the Union of the 17th of November,
followed by the glorification of the Lecompton Constitution on
the 18th of November, and this clause in the Constitution
asserting the doctrine that a State has no right to prohibit
slavery within its limits, I saw that there was a fatal blow
being struck at the sovereignty of the States of this Union."

I ask him if all this fuss was made over the editor of this
newspaper. It would be a terribly "fatal blow" indeed which a
single man could strike, when no President, no Cabinet officer,
no member of Congress, was giving strength and efficiency to the
movement. Out of respect to Judge Douglas's good sense I must
believe he did n't manufacture his idea of the "fatal" character
of that blow out of such a miserable scapegrace as he represents
that editor to be. But the Judge's eye is farther south now.
Then, it was very peculiarly and decidedly north. His hope
rested on the idea of visiting the great "Black Republican"
party, and making it the tail of his new kite. He knows he was
then expecting from day to day to turn Republican, and place
himself at the head of our organization. He has found that these
despised "Black Republicans" estimate him by a standard which he
has taught them none too well. Hence he is crawling back into
his old camp, and you will find him eventually installed in full
fellowship among those whom he was then battling, and with whom
he now pretends to be at such fearful variance.


SEPTEMBER 15, 1858


LADIES AND GENTLEMEN:--There is very much in the principles that
Judge Douglas has here enunciated that I most cordially approve,
and over which I shall have no controversy with him. In so far
as he has insisted that all the States have the right to do
exactly as they please about all their domestic relations,
including that of slavery, I agree entirely with him. He places
me wrong in spite of all I can tell him, though I repeat it again
and again, insisting that I have no difference with him upon this
subject. I have made a great many speeches, some of which have
been printed, and it will be utterly impossible for him to find
anything that I have ever put in print contrary to what I now say
upon this subject. I hold myself under constitutional
obligations to allow the people in all the States, without
interference, direct or indirect, to do exactly as they please;
and I deny that I have any inclination to interfere with them,
even if there were no such constitutional obligation. I can only
say again that I am placed improperly--altogether improperly, in
spite of all I can say--when it is insisted that I entertain any
other view or purposes in regard to that matter.

While I am upon this subject, I will make some answers briefly to
certain propositions that Judge Douglas has put. He says, "Why
can't this Union endure permanently half slave and half free?" I
have said that I supposed it could not, and I will try, before
this new audience, to give briefly some of the reasons for
entertaining that opinion. Another form of his question is, "Why
can't we let it stand as our fathers placed it?" That is the
exact difficulty between us. I say that Judge Douglas and his
friends have changed it from the position in which our fathers
originally placed it. I say, in the way our father's originally
left the slavery question, the institution was in the course of
ultimate extinction, and the public mind rested in the belief
that it was in the course of ultimate extinction. I say when
this government was first established it was the policy of its
founders to prohibit the spread of slavery into the new
Territories of the United States, where it had not existed. But
Judge Douglas and his friends have broken up that policy, and
placed it upon a new basis, by which it is to become national and
perpetual. All I have asked or desired anywhere is that it
should be placed back again upon the basis that the fathers of
our government originally placed it upon. I have no doubt that
it would become extinct, for all time to come, if we but
readopted the policy of the fathers, by restricting it to the
limits it has already covered, restricting it from the new

I do not wish to dwell at great length on this branch of the
subject at this time, but allow me to repeat one thing that I
have stated before. Brooks--the man who assaulted Senator Sumner
on the floor of the Senate, and who was complimented with
dinners, and silver pitchers, and gold-headed canes, and a good
many other things for that feat--in one of his speeches declared
that when this government was originally established, nobody
expected that the institution of slavery would last until this
day. That was but the opinion of one man, but it was such an
opinion as we can never get from Judge Douglas or anybody in
favor of slavery, in the North, at all. You can sometimes get it
from a Southern man. He said at the same time that the framers
of our government did not have the knowledge that experience has
taught us; that experience and the invention of the cotton-gin
have taught us that the perpetuation of slavery is a necessity.
He insisted, therefore, upon its being changed from the basis
upon which the fathers of the government left it to the basis of
its perpetuation and nationalization.

I insist that this is the difference between Judge Douglas and
myself,--that Judge Douglas is helping that change along. I
insist upon this government being placed where our fathers
originally placed it.

I remember Judge Douglas once said that he saw the evidences on
the statute books of Congress of a policy in the origin of
government to divide slavery and freedom by a geographical line;
that he saw an indisposition to maintain that policy, and
therefore he set about studying up a way to settle the
institution on the right basis,--the basis which he thought it
ought to have been placed upon at first; and in that speech he
confesses that he seeks to place it, not upon the basis that the
fathers placed it upon, but upon one gotten up on "original
principles." When he asks me why we cannot get along with it in
the attitude where our fathers placed it, he had better clear up
the evidences that he has himself changed it from that basis,
that he has himself been chiefly instrumental in changing the
policy of the fathers. Any one who will read his speech of the
22d of last March will see that he there makes an open
confession, showing that he set about fixing the institution upon
an altogether different set of principles. I think I have fully
answered him when he asks me why we cannot let it alone upon the
basis where our fathers left it, by showing that he has himself
changed the whole policy of the government in that regard.

Now, fellow-citizens, in regard to this matter about a contract
that was made between Judge Trumbull and myself, and all that
long portion of Judge Douglas's speech on this subject,--I wish
simply to say what I have said to him before, that he cannot know
whether it is true or not, and I do know that there is not a word
of truth in it. And I have told him so before. I don't want any
harsh language indulged in, but I do not know how to deal with
this persistent insisting on a story that I know to be utterly
without truth. It used to be a fashion amongst men that when a
charge was made, some sort of proof was brought forward to
establish it, and if no proof was found to exist, the charge was
dropped. I don't know how to meet this kind of an argument. I
don't want to have a fight with Judge Douglas, and I have no way
of making an argument up into the consistency of a corn-cob and
stopping his mouth with it. All I can do is--good-humoredly--to
say that, from the beginning to the end of all that story about a
bargain between Judge Trumbull and myself, there is not a word of
truth in it. I can only ask him to show some sort of evidence of
the truth of his story. He brings forward here and reads from
what he contends is a speech by James H. Matheny, charging such
a bargain between Trumbull and myself. My own opinion is that
Matheny did do some such immoral thing as to tell a story that he
knew nothing about. I believe he did. I contradicted it
instantly, and it has been contradicted by Judge Trumbull, while
nobody has produced any proof, because there is none. Now,
whether the speech which the Judge brings forward here is really
the one Matheny made, I do not know, and I hope the Judge will
pardon me for doubting the genuineness of this document, since
his production of those Springfield resolutions at Ottawa. I do
not wish to dwell at any great length upon this matter. I can
say nothing when a long story like this is told, except it is not
true, and demand that he who insists upon it shall produce some
proof. That is all any man can do, and I leave it in that way,
for I know of no other way of dealing with it.

[In an argument on the lines of: "Yes, you did.--No, I did
not." It bears on the former to prove his point, not on the
negative to "prove" that he did not--even if he easily can do

The Judge has gone over a long account of the old Whig and
Democratic parties, and it connects itself with this charge
against Trumbull and myself. He says that they agreed upon a
compromise in regard to the slavery question in 1850; that in a
National Democratic Convention resolutions were passed to abide
by that compromise as a finality upon the slavery question. He
also says that the Whig party in National Convention agreed to
abide by and regard as a finality the Compromise of 1850. I
understand the Judge to be altogether right about that; I
understand that part of the history of the country as stated by
him to be correct I recollect that I, as a member of that party,
acquiesced in that compromise. I recollect in the Presidential
election which followed, when we had General Scott up for the
presidency, Judge Douglas was around berating us Whigs as
Abolitionists, precisely as he does to-day,--not a bit of
difference. I have often heard him. We could do nothing when
the old Whig party was alive that was not Abolitionism, but it
has got an extremely good name since it has passed away.

[It almost a natural law that, when dead--no matter how bad we
were--we are automatically beatified.]

When that Compromise was made it did not repeal the old Missouri
Compromise. It left a region of United States territory half as
large as the present territory of the United States, north of the
line of 36 degrees 30 minutes, in which slavery was prohibited by
Act of Congress. This Compromise did not repeal that one. It
did not affect or propose to repeal it. But at last it became
Judge Douglas's duty, as he thought (and I find no fault with
him), as Chairman of the Committee on Territories, to bring in a
bill for the organization of a territorial government,--first of
one, then of two Territories north of that line. When he did so,
it ended in his inserting a provision substantially repealing the
Missouri Compromise. That was because the Compromise of 1850 had
not repealed it. And now I ask why he could not have let that
Compromise alone? We were quiet from the agitation of the
slavery question. We were making no fuss about it. All had
acquiesced in the Compromise measures of 1850. We never had been
seriously disturbed by any Abolition agitation before that
period. When he came to form governments for the Territories
north of the line of 36 degrees 30 minutes, why could he not have
let that matter stand as it was standing? Was it necessary to
the organization of a Territory? Not at all. Iowa lay north of
the line, and had been organized as a Territory and come into the
Union as a State without disturbing that Compromise. There was
no sort of necessity for destroying it to organize these
Territories. But, gentlemen, it would take up all my time to
meet all the little quibbling arguments of Judge Douglas to show
that the Missouri Compromise was repealed by the Compromise of
1850. My own opinion is, that a careful investigation of all the
arguments to sustain the position that that Compromise was
virtually repealed by the Compromise of 1850 would show that they
are the merest fallacies. I have the report that Judge Douglas
first brought into Congress at the time of the introduction of
the Nebraska Bill, which in its original form did not repeal the
Missouri Compromise, and he there expressly stated that he had
forborne to do so because it had not been done by the Compromise
of 1850. I close this part of the discussion on my part by
asking him the question again, "Why, when we had peace under the
Missouri Compromise, could you not have let it alone?"

In complaining of what I said in my speech at Springfield, in
which he says I accepted my nomination for the senatorship
(where, by the way, he is at fault, for if he will examine it, he
will find no acceptance in it), he again quotes that portion in
which I said that "a house divided against itself cannot stand."
Let me say a word in regard to that matter.

He tries to persuade us that there must be a variety in the
different institutions of the States of the Union; that that
variety necessarily proceeds from the variety of soil, climate,
of the face of the country, and the difference in the natural
features of the States. I agree to all that. Have these very
matters ever produced any difficulty amongst us? Not at all.
Have we ever had any quarrel over the fact that they have laws in
Louisiana designed to regulate the commerce that springs from the
production of sugar? Or because we have a different class
relative to the production of flour in this State? Have they
produced any differences? Not at all. They are the very cements
of this Union. They don't make the house a house divided against
itself. They are the props that hold up the house and sustain
the Union.

But has it been so with this element of slavery? Have we not
always had quarrels and difficulties over it? And when will we
cease to have quarrels over it? Like causes produce like
effects. It is worth while to observe that we have generally had
comparative peace upon the slavery question, and that there has
been no cause for alarm until it was excited by the effort to
spread it into new territory. Whenever it has been limited to
its present bounds, and there has been no effort to spread it,
there has been peace. All the trouble and convulsion has
proceeded from efforts to spread it over more territory. It was
thus at the date of the Missouri Compromise. It was so again
with the annexation of Texas; so with the territory acquired by
the Mexican war; and it is so now. Whenever there has been an
effort to spread it, there has been agitation and resistance.
Now, I appeal to this audience (very few of whom are my political
friends), as national men, whether we have reason to expect that
the agitation in regard to this subject will cease while the
causes that tend to reproduce agitation are actively at work?
Will not the same cause that produced agitation in 1820, when the
Missouri Compromise was formed, that which produced the agitation
upon the annexation of Texas, and at other times, work out the
same results always? Do you think that the nature of man will be
changed, that the same causes that produced agitation at one time
will not have the same effect at another?

This has been the result so far as my observation of the slavery
question and my reading in history extends. What right have we
then to hope that the trouble will cease,--that the agitation
will come to an end,--until it shall either be placed back where
it originally stood, and where the fathers originally placed it,
or, on the other hand, until it shall entirely master all
opposition? This is the view I entertain, and this is the reason
why I entertained it, as Judge Douglas has read from my
Springfield speech.

Now, my friends, there is one other thing that I feel myself
under some sort of obligation to mention. Judge Douglas has here
to-day--in a very rambling way, I was about saying--spoken of the
platforms for which he seeks to hold me responsible. He says,
"Why can't you come out and make an open avowal of principles in
all places alike?" and he reads from an advertisement that he
says was used to notify the people of a speech to be made by
Judge Trumbull at Waterloo. In commenting on it he desires to
know whether we cannot speak frankly and manfully, as he and his
friends do. How, I ask, do his friends speak out their own
sentiments? A Convention of his party in this State met on the
21st of April at Springfield, and passed a set of resolutions
which they proclaim to the country as their platform. This does
constitute their platform, and it is because Judge Douglas claims
it is his platform--that these are his principles and purposes--
that he has a right to declare he speaks his sentiments "frankly
and manfully." On the 9th of June Colonel John Dougherty,
Governor Reynolds, and others, calling themselves National
Democrats, met in Springfield and adopted a set of resolutions
which are as easily understood, as plain and as definite in
stating to the country and to the world what they believed in and
would stand upon, as Judge Douglas's platform Now, what is the
reason that Judge Douglas is not willing that Colonel Dougherty
and Governor Reynolds should stand upon their own written and
printed platform as well as he upon his? Why must he look
farther than their platform when he claims himself to stand by
his platform?

Again, in reference to our platform: On the 16th of June the
Republicans had their Convention and published their platform,
which is as clear and distinct as Judge Douglas's. In it they
spoke their principles as plainly and as definitely to the world.
What is the reason that Judge Douglas is not willing I should
stand upon that platform? Why must he go around hunting for some
one who is supporting me or has supported me at some time in his
life, and who has said something at some time contrary to that
platform? Does the Judge regard that rule as a good one? If it
turn out that the rule is a good one for me--that I am
responsible for any and every opinion that any man has expressed
who is my friend,--then it is a good rule for him. I ask, is it
not as good a rule for him as it is for me? In my opinion, it is
not a good rule for either of us. Do you think differently,

[Mr. DOUGLAS: I do not.]

Judge Douglas says he does not think differently. I am glad of
it. Then can he tell me why he is looking up resolutions of five
or six years ago, and insisting that they were my platform,
notwithstanding my protest that they are not, and never were my
platform, and my pointing out the platform of the State
Convention which he delights to say nominated me for the Senate?
I cannot see what he means by parading these resolutions, if it
is not to hold me responsible for them in some way. If he says
to me here that he does not hold the rule to be good, one way or
the other, I do not comprehend how he could answer me more fully
if he answered me at greater length. I will therefore put in as
my answer to the resolutions that he has hunted up against me,
what I, as a lawyer, would call a good plea to a bad declaration.
I understand that it is an axiom of law that a poor plea may be a
good plea to a bad declaration. I think that the opinions the
Judge brings from those who support me, yet differ from me, is a
bad declaration against me; but if I can bring the same things
against him, I am putting in a good plea to that kind of
declaration, and now I propose to try it.

At Freeport, Judge Douglas occupied a large part of his time in
producing resolutions and documents of various sorts, as I
understood, to make me somehow responsible for them; and I
propose now doing a little of the same sort of thing for him. In
1850 a very clever gentleman by the name of Thompson Campbell, a
personal friend of Judge Douglas and myself, a political friend
of Judge Douglas and opponent of mine, was a candidate for
Congress in the Galena District. He was interrogated as to his
views on this same slavery question. I have here before me the
interrogatories, and Campbell's answers to them--I will read


"1st. Will you, if elected, vote for and cordially support a
bill prohibiting slavery in the Territories of the United States?

"2d. Will you vote for and support a bill abolishing slavery in
the District of Columbia?

"3d. Will you oppose the admission of any Slave States which may
be formed out of Texas or the Territories?

"4th. Will you vote for and advocate the repeal of the Fugitive
Slave law passed at the recent session of Congress?

"5th. Will you advocate and vote for the election of a Speaker
of the House of Representatives who shall be willing to organize
the committees of that House so as to give the Free States their
just influence in the business of legislation?

"6th. What are your views, not only as to the constitutional
right of Congress to prohibit the slave-trade between the States,
but also as to the expediency of exercising that right


"To the first and second interrogatories, I answer unequivocally
in the affirmative.

"To the third interrogatory I reply, that I am opposed to the
admission of any more Slave States into the Union, that may be
formed out of Texas or any other Territory.

"To the fourth and fifth interrogatories I unhesitatingly answer
in the affirmative.

"To the sixth interrogatory I reply, that so long as the Slave
States continue to treat slaves as articles of commerce, the
Constitution confers power on Congress to pass laws regulating
that peculiar COMMERCE, and that the protection of Human Rights
imperatively demands the interposition of every constitutional
means to prevent this most inhuman and iniquitous traffic.


I want to say here that Thompson Campbell was elected to Congress
on that platform, as the Democratic candidate in the Galena
District, against Martin P. Sweet.

[Judge DOUGLAS: Give me the date of the letter.]

The time Campbell ran was in 1850. I have not the exact date
here. It was some time in 1850 that these interrogatories were
put and the answer given. Campbell was elected to Congress, and
served out his term. I think a second election came up before he
served out his term, and he was not re-elected. Whether defeated
or not nominated, I do not know. [Mr. Campbell was nominated for
re-election by the Democratic party, by acclamation.] At the end
of his term his very good friend Judge Douglas got him a high
office from President Pierce, and sent him off to California. Is
not that the fact? Just at the end of his term in Congress it
appears that our mutual friend Judge Douglas got our mutual
friend Campbell a good office, and sent him to California upon
it. And not only so, but on the 27th of last month, when Judge
Douglas and myself spoke at Freeport in joint discussion, there
was his same friend Campbell, come all the way from California,
to help the Judge beat me; and there was poor Martin P. Sweet
standing on the platform, trying to help poor me to be elected.
That is true of one of Judge Douglas's friends.

So again, in that same race of 1850, there was a Congressional
Convention assembled at Joliet, and it nominated R. S. Molony
for Congress, and unanimously adopted the following resolution:

"Resolved, That we are uncompromisingly opposed to the extension
of slavery; and while we would not make such opposition a ground
of interference with the interests of the States where it exists,
yet we moderately but firmly insist that it is the duty of
Congress to oppose its extension into Territory now free, by all
means compatible with the obligations of the Constitution, and
with good faith to our sister States; that these principles were
recognized by the Ordinance of 1787, which received the sanction
of Thomas Jefferson, who is acknowledged by all to be the great
oracle and expounder of our faith."

Subsequently the same interrogatories were propounded to Dr.
Molony which had been addressed to Campbell as above, with the
exception of the 6th, respecting the interstate slave trade, to
which Dr. Molony, the Democratic nominee for Congress, replied
as follows:

"I received the written interrogatories this day, and, as you
will see by the La Salle Democrat and Ottawa Free Trader, I took
at Peru on the 5th, and at Ottawa on the 7th, the affirmative
side of interrogatories 1st and 2d; and in relation to the
admission of any more Slave States from Free Territory, my
position taken at these meetings, as correctly reported in said
papers, was emphatically and distinctly opposed to it. In
relation to the admission of any more Slave States from Texas,
whether I shall go against it or not will depend upon the opinion
that I may hereafter form of the true meaning and nature of the
resolutions of annexation. If, by said resolutions, the honor
and good faith of the nation is pledged to admit more Slave
States from Texas when she (Texas) may apply for the admission of
such State, then I should, if in Congress, vote for their
admission. But if not so PLEDGED and bound by sacred contract,
then a bill for the admission of more Slave States from Texas
would never receive my vote.

"To your fourth interrogatory I answer most decidedly in the
affirmative, and for reasons set forth in my reported remarks at
Ottawa last Monday.

"To your fifth interrogatory I also reply in the affirmative most
cordially, and that I will use my utmost exertions to secure the
nomination and election of a man who will accomplish the objects
of said interrogatories. I most cordially approve of the
resolutions adopted at the Union meeting held at Princeton on the
27th September ult.

"Yours, etc., R. S. MOLONY."

All I have to say in regard to Dr. Molony is that he was the
regularly nominated Democratic candidate for Congress in his
district; was elected at that time; at the end of his term was
appointed to a land-office at Danville. (I never heard anything
of Judge Douglas's instrumentality in this.) He held this office
a considerable time, and when we were at Freeport the other day
there were handbills scattered about notifying the public that
after our debate was over R. S. Molony would make a Democratic
speech in favor of Judge Douglas. That is all I know of my own
personal knowledge. It is added here to this resolution, and
truly I believe, that among those who participated in the Joliet
Convention, and who supported its nominee, with his platform as
laid down in the resolution of the Convention and in his reply as
above given, we call at random the following names, all of which
are recognized at this day as leading

"Cook County,--E. B. Williams, Charles McDonell, Arno Voss,
Thomas Hoyne, Isaac Cook."

I reckon we ought to except Cook.

"F. C. Sherman.
"Will,--Joel A. Matteson, S. W. Bowen.
"Kane,--B. F. Hall, G. W. Renwick, A. M. Herrington, Elijah
"McHenry,--W. M. Jackson, Enos W. Smith, Neil Donnelly.
La Salle,--John Hise, William Reddick."

William Reddick! another one of Judge Douglas's friends that
stood on the stand with him at Ottawa, at the time the Judge says
my knees trembled so that I had to be carried away. The names
are all here:

"Du Page,--Nathan Allen.
"De Kalb,--Z. B. Mayo."

Here is another set of resolutions which I think are apposite to
the matter in hand.

On the 28th of February of the same year a Democratic District
Convention was held at Naperville to nominate a candidate for
Circuit Judge. Among the delegates were Bowen and Kelly of Will;
Captain Naper, H. H. Cody, Nathan Allen, of Du Page; W. M.
Jackson, J. M. Strode, P. W. Platt, and Enos W. Smith of McHenry;
J. Horssnan and others of Winnebago. Colonel Strode presided
over the Convention. The following resolutions were unanimously
adopted,--the first on motion of P. W. Platt, the second on
motion of William M. Jackson:

"Resolved, That this Convention is in favor of the Wilmot
Proviso, both in Principle and Practice, and that we know of no
good reason why any person should oppose the largest latitude in
Free Soil, Free Territory and Free speech.

"Resolved, That in the opinion of this Convention, the time has
arrived when all men should be free, whites as well as others."

[Judge DOUGLAS: What is the date of those resolutions?]

I understand it was in 1850, but I do not know it. I do not
state a thing and say I know it, when I do not. But I have the
highest belief that this is so. I know of no way to arrive at
the conclusion that there is an error in it. I mean to put a
case no stronger than the truth will allow. But what I was going
to comment upon is an extract from a newspaper in De Kalb County;
and it strikes me as being rather singular, I confess, under the
circumstances. There is a Judge Mayo in that county, who is a
candidate for the Legislature, for the purpose, if he secures his
election, of helping to re-elect Judge Douglas. He is the editor
of a newspaper [De Kalb County Sentinel], and in that paper I
find the extract I am going to read. It is part of an editorial
article in which he was electioneering as fiercely as he could
for Judge Douglas and against me. It was a curious thing, I
think, to be in such a paper. I will agree to that, and the
Judge may make the most of it:

"Our education has been such that we have been rather in favor of
the equality of the blacks; that is, that they should enjoy all
the privileges of the whites where they reside. We are aware
that this is not a very popular doctrine. We have had many a
confab with some who are now strong 'Republicans' we taking the
broad ground of equality, and they the opposite ground.

"We were brought up in a State where blacks were voters, and we
do not know of any inconvenience resulting from it, though
perhaps it would not work as well where the blacks are more
numerous. We have no doubt of the right of the whites to guard
against such an evil, if it is one. Our opinion is that it would
be best for all concerned to have the colored population in a
State by themselves [in this I agree with him]; but if within the
jurisdiction of the United States, we say by all means they
should have the right to have their Senators and Representatives
in Congress, and to vote for President. With us 'worth makes the
man, and want of it the fellow.' We have seen many a 'nigger'
that we thought more of than some white men."

That is one of Judge Douglas's friends. Now, I do not want to
leave myself in an attitude where I can be misrepresented, so I
will say I do not think the Judge is responsible for this
article; but he is quite as responsible for it as I would be if
one of my friends had said it. I think that is fair enough.

I have here also a set of resolutions passed by a Democratic
State Convention in Judge Douglas's own good State of Vermont,
that I think ought to be good for him too:

"Resolved, That liberty is a right inherent and inalienable in
man, and that herein all men are equal.
"Resolved, That we claim no authority in the Federal Government
to abolish slavery in the several States, but we do claim for it
Constitutional power perpetually to prohibit the introduction of
slavery into territory now free, and abolish it wherever, under
the jurisdiction of Congress, it exists.
"Resolved, That this power ought immediately to be exercised in
prohibiting the introduction and existence of slavery in New
Mexico and California, in abolishing slavery and the slave-trade
in the District of Columbia, on the high seas, and wherever else,
under the Constitution, it can be reached.
"Resolved, That no more Slave States should be admitted into the
Federal Union.
"Resolved, That the Government ought to return to its ancient
policy, not to extend, nationalize, or encourage, but to limit,
localize, and discourage slavery."

At Freeport I answered several interrogatories that had been
propounded to me by Judge Douglas at the Ottawa meeting. The
Judge has not yet seen fit to find any fault with the position
that I took in regard to those seven interrogatories, which were
certainly broad enough, in all conscience, to cover the entire
ground. In my answers, which have been printed, and all have had
the opportunity of seeing, I take the ground that those who elect
me must expect that I will do nothing which will not be in
accordance with those answers. I have some right to assert that
Judge Douglas has no fault to find with them. But he chooses to
still try to thrust me upon different ground, without paying any
attention to my answers, the obtaining of which from me cost him
so much trouble and concern. At the same time I propounded four
interrogatories to him, claiming it as a right that he should
answer as many interrogatories for me as I did for him, and I
would reserve myself for a future instalment when I got them
ready. The Judge, in answering me upon that occasion, put in
what I suppose he intends as answers to all four of my
interrogatories. The first one of these interrogatories I have
before me, and it is in these words:

"Question 1.--If the people of Kansas shall, by means entirely
unobjectionable in all other respects, adopt a State
constitution, and ask admission into the Union under it, before
they have the requisite number of inhabitants according to the
English bill, "-some ninety-three thousand,-" will you vote to
admit them?"

As I read the Judge's answer in the newspaper, and as I remember
it as pronounced at the time, he does not give any answer which
is equivalent to yes or no,--I will or I won't. He answers at
very considerable length, rather quarreling with me for asking
the question, and insisting that Judge Trumbull had done
something that I ought to say something about, and finally
getting out such statements as induce me to infer that he means
to be understood he will, in that supposed case, vote for the
admission of Kansas. I only bring this forward now for the
purpose of saying that if he chooses to put a different
construction upon his answer, he may do it. But if he does not,
I shall from this time forward assume that he will vote for the
admission of Kansas in disregard of the English bill. He has the
right to remove any misunderstanding I may have. I only mention
it now, that I may hereafter assume this to be the true
construction of his answer, if he does not now choose to correct

The second interrogatory that I propounded to him was this:

"Question 2.--Can the people of a United States Territory, in any
lawful way, against the wish of any citizen of the United States,
exclude slavery from its limits prior to the formation of a State

To this Judge Douglas answered that they can lawfully exclude
slavery from the Territory prior to the formation of a
constitution. He goes on to tell us how it can be done. As I
understand him, he holds that it can be done by the Territorial
Legislature refusing to make any enactments for the protection of
slavery in the Territory, and especially by adopting unfriendly
legislation to it. For the sake of clearness, I state it again:
that they can exclude slavery from the Territory, 1st, by
withholding what he assumes to be an indispensable assistance to
it in the way of legislation; and, 2d, by unfriendly legislation.
If I rightly understand him, I wish to ask your attention for a
while to his position.

In the first place, the Supreme Court of the United States has
decided that any Congressional prohibition of slavery in the
Territories is unconstitutional; that they have reached this
proposition as a conclusion from their former proposition, that
the Constitution of the United States expressly recognizes
property in slaves, and from that other Constitutional provision,
that no person shall be deprived of property without due process
of law. Hence they reach the conclusion that as the Constitution
of the United States expressly recognizes property in slaves, and
prohibits any person from being deprived of property without due
process of law, to pass an Act of Congress by which a man who
owned a slave on one side of a line would be deprived of him if
he took him on the other side, is depriving him of that property
without due process of law. That I understand to be the decision
of the Supreme Court. I understand also that Judge Douglas
adheres most firmly to that decision; and the difficulty is, how
is it possible for any power to exclude slavery from the
Territory, unless in violation of that decision? That is the

In the Senate of the United States, in 1850, Judge Trumbull, in a
speech substantially, if not directly, put the same interrogatory
to Judge Douglas, as to whether the people of a Territory had the
lawful power to exclude slavery prior to the formation of a
constitution. Judge Douglas then answered at considerable
length, and his answer will be found in the Congressional Globe,
under date of June 9th, 1856. The Judge said that whether the
people could exclude slavery prior to the formation of a
constitution or not was a question to be decided by the Supreme
Court. He put that proposition, as will be seen by the
Congressional Globe, in a variety of forms, all running to the
same thing in substance,--that it was a question for the Supreme
Court. I maintain that when he says, after the Supreme Court
have decided the question, that the people may yet exclude
slavery by any means whatever, he does virtually say that it is
not a question for the Supreme Court. He shifts his ground. I
appeal to you whether he did not say it was a question for the
Supreme Court? Has not the Supreme Court decided that question?
when he now says the people may exclude slavery, does he not make
it a question for the people? Does he not virtually shift his
ground and say that it is not a question for the Court, but for
the people? This is a very simple proposition,--a very plain and
naked one. It seems to me that there is no difficulty in
deciding it. In a variety of ways he said that it was a question
for the Supreme Court. He did not stop then to tell us that,
whatever the Supreme Court decides, the people can by withholding
necessary "police regulations" keep slavery out. He did not make
any such answer I submit to you now whether the new state of the
case has not induced the Judge to sheer away from his original
ground. Would not this be the impression of every fair-minded

I hold that the proposition that slavery cannot enter a new
country without police regulations is historically false. It is
not true at all. I hold that the history of this country shows
that the institution of slavery was originally planted upon this
continent without these "police regulations," which the Judge now
thinks necessary for the actual establishment of it. Not only
so, but is there not another fact: how came this Dred Scott
decision to be made? It was made upon the case of a negro being
taken and actually held in slavery in Minnesota Territory,
claiming his freedom because the Act of Congress prohibited his
being so held there. Will the Judge pretend that Dred Scott was
not held there without police regulations? There is at least one
matter of record as to his having been held in slavery in the
Territory, not only without police regulations, but in the teeth
of Congressional legislation supposed to be valid at the time.
This shows that there is vigor enough in slavery to plant itself
in a new country even against unfriendly legislation. It takes
not only law, but the enforcement of law to keep it out. That is
the history of this country upon the subject.

I wish to ask one other question. It being understood that the
Constitution of the United States guarantees property in slaves
in the Territories, if there is any infringement of the right of
that property, would not the United States courts, organized for
the government of the Territory, apply such remedy as might be
necessary in that case? It is a maxim held by the courts that
there is no wrong without its remedy; and the courts have a
remedy for whatever is acknowledged and treated as a wrong.

Again: I will ask you, my friends, if you were elected members of
the Legislature, what would be the first thing you would have to
do before entering upon your duties? Swear to support the
Constitution of the United States. Suppose you believe, as Judge
Douglas does, that the Constitution of the United States
guarantees to your neighbor the right to hold slaves in that
Territory; that they are his property: how can you clear your
oaths unless you give him such legislation as is necessary to
enable him to enjoy that property? What do you understand by
supporting the Constitution of a State, or of the United States?
Is it not to give such constitutional helps to the rights
established by that Constitution as may be practically needed?
Can you, if you swear to support the Constitution, and believe
that the Constitution establishes a right, clear your oath,
without giving it support? Do you support the Constitution if,
knowing or believing there is a right established under it which
needs specific legislation, you withhold that legislation? Do
you not violate and disregard your oath? I can conceive of
nothing plainer in the world. There can be nothing in the words
"support the Constitution," if you may run counter to it by
refusing support to any right established under the Constitution.
And what I say here will hold with still more force against the
Judge's doctrine of "unfriendly legislation." How could you,
having sworn to support the Constitution, and believing it
guaranteed the right to hold slaves in the Territories, assist in
legislation intended to defeat that right? That would be
violating your own view of the Constitution. Not only so, but if
you were to do so, how long would it take the courts to hold your
votes unconstitutional and void? Not a moment.

Lastly, I would ask: Is not Congress itself under obligation to
give legislative support to any right that is established under
the United States Constitution? I repeat the question: Is not
Congress itself bound to give legislative support to any right
that is established in the United States Constitution? A member
of Congress swears to support the Constitution of the United
States: and if he sees a right established by that Constitution
which needs specific legislative protection, can he clear his
oath without giving that protection? Let me ask you why many of
us who are opposed to slavery upon principle give our
acquiescence to a Fugitive Slave law? Why do we hold ourselves
under obligations to pass such a law, and abide by it when it is
passed? Because the Constitution makes provision that the owners
of slaves shall have the right to reclaim them. It gives the
right to reclaim slaves; and that right is, as Judge Douglas
says, a barren right, unless there is legislation that will
enforce it.

The mere declaration, "No person held to service or labor in one
State under the laws thereof, escaping into another, shall in
consequence of any law or regulation therein be discharged from
such service or labor, but shall be delivered up on claim of the
party to whom such service or labor may be due," is powerless
without specific legislation to enforce it. Now, on what ground
would a member of Congress, who is opposed to slavery in the
abstract, vote for a Fugitive law, as I would deem it my duty to
do? Because there is a constitutional right which needs
legislation to enforce it. And although it is distasteful to me,
I have sworn to support the Constitution; and having so sworn, I
cannot conceive that I do support it if I withhold from that
right any necessary legislation to make it practical. And if
that is true in regard to a Fugitive Slave law, is the right to
have fugitive slaves reclaimed any better fixed in the
Constitution than the right to hold slaves in the Territories?
For this decision is a just exposition of the Constitution, as
Judge Douglas thinks. Is the one right any better than the
other? Is there any man who, while a member of Congress, would
give support to the one any more than the other? If I wished to
refuse to give legislative support to slave property in the
Territories, if a member of Congress, I could not do it, holding
the view that the Constitution establishes that right. If I did
it at all, it would be because I deny that this decision properly
construes the Constitution. But if I acknowledge, with Judge
Douglas, that this decision properly construes the Constitution,
I cannot conceive that I would be less than a perjured man if I
should refuse in Congress to give such protection to that
property as in its nature it needed.

At the end of what I have said here I propose to give the Judge
my fifth interrogatory, which he may take and answer at his
leisure. My fifth interrogatory is this:

If the slaveholding citizens of a United States Territory should
need and demand Congressional legislation for the protection of
their slave property in such Territory, would you, as a member of
Congress, vote for or against such legislation?

[Judge DOUGLAS: Will you repeat that? I want to answer that

If the slaveholding citizens of a United States Territory should
need and demand Congressional legislation for the protection of
their slave property in such Territory, would you, as a member of
Congress, vote for or against such legislation?

I am aware that in some of the speeches Judge Douglas has made,
he has spoken as if he did not know or think that the Supreme
Court had decided that a Territorial Legislature cannot exclude
slavery. Precisely what the Judge would say upon the subject--
whether he would say definitely that he does not understand they
have so decided, or whether he would say he does understand that
the court have so decided,--I do not know; but I know that in his
speech at Springfield he spoke of it as a thing they had not
decided yet; and in his answer to me at Freeport, he spoke of it,
so far, again, as I can comprehend it, as a thing that had not
yet been decided. Now, I hold that if the Judge does entertain
that view, I think that he is not mistaken in so far as it can be
said that the court has not decided anything save the mere
question of jurisdiction. I know the legal arguments that can be
made,--that after a court has decided that it cannot take
jurisdiction in a case, it then has decided all that is before
it, and that is the end of it. A plausible argument can be made
in favor of that proposition; but I know that Judge Douglas has
said in one of his speeches that the court went forward, like
honest men as they were, and decided all the points in the case.
If any points are really extra-judicially decided, because not
necessarily before them, then this one as to the power of the
Territorial Legislature, to exclude slavery is one of them, as
also the one that the Missouri Compromise was null and void.
They are both extra-judicial, or neither is, according as the
court held that they had no jurisdiction in the case between the
parties, because of want of capacity of one party to maintain a
suit in that court. I want, if I have sufficient time, to show
that the court did pass its opinion; but that is the only thing
actually done in the case. If they did not decide, they showed
what they were ready to decide whenever the matter was before
them. What is that opinion? After having argued that Congress
had no power to pass a law excluding slavery from a United States
Territory, they then used language to this effect: That inasmuch
as Congress itself could not exercise such a power, it followed
as a matter of course that it could not authorize a Territorial
government to exercise it; for the Territorial Legislature can do
no more than Congress could do. Thus it expressed its opinion
emphatically against the power of a Territorial Legislature to
exclude slavery, leaving us in just as little doubt on that point
as upon any other point they really decided.

Now, my fellow-citizens, I will detain you only a little while
longer; my time is nearly out. I find a report of a speech made
by Judge Douglas at Joliet, since we last met at Freeport,--
published, I believe, in the Missouri Republican, on the 9th of
this month, in which Judge Douglas says:

"You know at Ottawa I read this platform, and asked him if he
concurred in each and all of the principles set forth in it. He
would not answer these questions. At last I said frankly, I wish
you to answer them, because when I get them up here where the
color of your principles are a little darker than in Egypt, I
intend to trot you down to Jonesboro. The very notice that I was
going to take him down to Egypt made him tremble in his knees so
that he had to be carried from the platform. He laid up seven
days, and in the meantime held a consultation with his political
physicians; they had Lovejoy and Farnsworth and all the leaders
of the Abolition party, they consulted it all over, and at last
Lincoln came to the conclusion that he would answer, so he came
up to Freeport last Friday."

Now, that statement altogether furnishes a subject for
philosophical contemplation. I have been treating it in that
way, and I have really come to the conclusion that I can explain
it in no other way than by believing the Judge is crazy. If he
was in his right mind I cannot conceive how he would have risked
disgusting the four or five thousand of his own friends who stood
there and knew, as to my having been carried from the platform,
that there was not a word of truth in it.

[Judge DOUGLAS: Did n't they carry you off?]

There that question illustrates the character of this man Douglas
exactly. He smiles now, and says, "Did n't they carry you off?"
but he said then "he had to be carried off"; and he said it to
convince the country that he had so completely broken me down by
his speech that I had to be carried away. Now he seeks to dodge
it, and asks, "Did n't they carry you off?" Yes, they did. But,
Judge Douglas, why didn't you tell the truth? I would like to
know why you did n't tell the truth about it. And then again "He
laid up seven days." He put this in print for the people of the
country to read as a serious document. I think if he had been in
his sober senses he would not have risked that barefacedness in
the presence of thousands of his own friends who knew that I made
speeches within six of the seven days at Henry, Marshall County,
Augusta, Hancock County, and Macomb, McDonough County, including
all the necessary travel to meet him again at Freeport at the end
of the six days. Now I say there is no charitable way to look at
that statement, except to conclude that he is actually crazy.
There is another thing in that statement that alarmed me very
greatly as he states it, that he was going to "trot me down to
Egypt." Thereby he would have you infer that I would not come to
Egypt unless he forced me--that I could not be got here unless
he, giant-like, had hauled me down here. That statement he
makes, too, in the teeth of the knowledge that I had made the
stipulation to come down here and that he himself had been very
reluctant to enter into the stipulation. More than all this:
Judge Douglas, when he made that statement, must have been crazy
and wholly out of his sober senses, or else he would have known
that when he got me down here, that promise--that windy promise--
of his powers to annihilate me, would n't amount to anything.
Now, how little do I look like being carried away trembling? Let
the Judge go on; and after he is done with his half-hour, I want
you all, if I can't go home myself, to let me stay and rot here;
and if anything happens to the Judge, if I cannot carry him to
the hotel and put him to bed, let me stay here and rot. I say,
then, here is something extraordinary in this statement. I ask
you if you know any other living man who would make such a
statement? I will ask my friend Casey, over there, if he would
do such a thing? Would he send that out and have his men take it
as the truth? Did the Judge talk of trotting me down to Egypt to
scare me to death? Why, I know this people better than he does.
I was raised just a little east of here. I am a part of this
people. But the Judge was raised farther north, and perhaps he
has some horrid idea of what this people might be induced to do.
But really I have talked about this matter perhaps longer than I
ought, for it is no great thing; and yet the smallest are often
the most difficult things to deal with. The Judge has set about
seriously trying to make the impression that when we meet at
different places I am literally in his clutches--that I am a
poor, helpless, decrepit mouse, and that I can do nothing at all.
This is one of the ways he has taken to create that impression.
I don't know any other way to meet it except this. I don't want
to quarrel with him--to call him a liar; but when I come square
up to him I don't know what else to call him if I must tell the
truth out. I want to be at peace, and reserve all my fighting
powers for necessary occasions. My time now is very nearly out,
and I give up the trifle that is left to the Judge, to let him
set my knees trembling again, if he can.





LADIES AND GENTLEMEN:--It will be very difficult for an audience so
large as this to hear distinctly what a speaker says, and
consequently it is important that as profound silence be preserved as

While I was at the hotel to-day, an elderly gentleman called upon me
to know whether I was really in favor of producing a perfect equality
between the negroes and white people. While I had not proposed to
myself on this occasion to say much on that subject, yet as the
question was asked me I thought I would occupy perhaps five minutes
in saying something in regard to it. I will say, then, that I am
not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the
social and political equality of the white and black races; that I am
not, nor ever have been, in favor of making voters or jurors of
negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry
with white people; and I will say, in addition to this, that there is
a physical difference between the white and black races which I
believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of
social and political equality. And in as much as they cannot so
live, while they do remain together there must be the position of
superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in favor of
having the superior position assigned to the white race. I say upon
this occasion I do not perceive that because the white man is to have
the superior position the negro should be denied everything. I do
not understand that because I do not want a negro woman for a slave I
must necessarily want her for a wife. My understanding is that I can
just let her alone. I am now in my fiftieth year, and I certainly
never have had a black woman for either a slave or a wife. So it
seems to me quite possible for us to get along without making either
slaves or wives of negroes. I will add to this that I have never
seen, to my knowledge, a man, woman, or child who was in favor of
producing a perfect equality, social and political, between negroes
and white men. I recollect of but one distinguished instance that I
ever heard of so frequently as to be entirely satisfied of its
correctness, and that is the case of Judge Douglas's old friend
Colonel Richard M. Johnson. I will also add to the remarks I have
made (for I am not going to enter at large upon this subject), that I
have never had the least apprehension that I or my friends would
marry negroes if there was no law to keep them from it; but as Judge
Douglas and his friends seem to be in great apprehension that they
might, if there were no law to keep them from it, I give him the most
solemn pledge that I will to the very last stand by the law of this
State which forbids the marrying of white people with negroes. I
will add one further word, which is this: that I do not understand
that there is any place where an alteration of the social and
political relations of the negro and the white man can be made,
except in the State Legislature,--not in the Congress of the United
States; and as I do not really apprehend the approach of any such
thing myself, and as Judge Douglas seems to be in constant horror
that some such danger is rapidly approaching, I propose as the best
means to prevent it that the Judge be kept at home, and placed in the
State Legislature to fight the measure. I do not propose dwelling
longer at this time on this subject.

When Judge Trumbull, our other Senator in Congress, returned to
Illinois in the month of August, he made a speech at Chicago, in
which he made what may be called a charge against Judge Douglas,
which I understand proved to be very offensive to him. The Judge was
at that time out upon one of his speaking tours through the country,
and when the news of it reached him, as I am informed, he denounced
Judge Trumbull in rather harsh terms for having said what he did in
regard to that matter. I was traveling at that time, and speaking at
the same places with Judge Douglas on subsequent days, and when I
heard of what Judge Trumbull had said of Douglas, and what Douglas
had said back again, I felt that I was in a position where I could
not remain entirely silent in regard to the matter. Consequently,
upon two or three occasions I alluded to it, and alluded to it in no
other wise than to say that in regard to the charge brought by
Trumbull against Douglas, I personally knew nothing, and sought to
say nothing about it; that I did personally know Judge Trumbull; that
I believed him to be a man of veracity; that I believed him to be a
man of capacity sufficient to know very well whether an assertion he
was making, as a conclusion drawn from a set of facts, was true or
false; and as a conclusion of my own from that, I stated it as my
belief if Trumbull should ever be called upon, he would prove
everything he had said. I said this upon two or three occasions.
Upon a subsequent occasion, Judge Trumbull spoke again before an
audience at Alton, and upon that occasion not only repeated his
charge against Douglas, but arrayed the evidence he relied upon to
substantiate it. This speech was published at length; and
subsequently at Jacksonville Judge Douglas alluded to the matter. In
the course of his speech, and near the close of it, he stated in
regard to myself what I will now read:

"Judge Douglas proceeded to remark that he should not hereafter
occupy his time in refuting such charges made by Trumbull, but that,
Lincoln having indorsed the character of Trumbull for veracity, he
should hold him (Lincoln) responsible for the slanders."

I have done simply what I have told you, to subject me to this
invitation to notice the charge. I now wish to say that it had not
originally been my purpose to discuss that matter at all But in-as-
much as it seems to be the wish of Judge Douglas to hold me
responsible for it, then for once in my life I will play General
Jackson, and to the just extent I take the responsibility.

I wish to say at the beginning that I will hand to the reporters that
portion of Judge Trumbull's Alton speech which was devoted to this
matter, and also that portion of Judge Douglas's speech made at
Jacksonville in answer to it. I shall thereby furnish the readers of
this debate with the complete discussion between Trumbull and
Douglas. I cannot now read them, for the reason that it would take
half of my first hour to do so. I can only make some comments upon
them. Trumbull's charge is in the following words:

"Now, the charge is, that there was a plot entered into to have a
constitution formed for Kansas, and put in force, without giving the
people an opportunity to vote upon it, and that Mr. Douglas was in
the plot."

I will state, without quoting further, for all will have an
opportunity of reading it hereafter, that Judge Trumbull brings
forward what he regards as sufficient evidence to substantiate this

It will be perceived Judge Trumbull shows that Senator Bigler, upon
the floor of the Senate, had declared there had been a conference
among the senators, in which conference it was determined to have an
enabling act passed for the people of Kansas to form a constitution
under, and in this conference it was agreed among them that it was
best not to have a provision for submitting the constitution to a
vote of the people after it should be formed. He then brings forward
to show, and showing, as he deemed, that Judge Douglas reported the
bill back to the Senate with that clause stricken out. He then shows
that there was a new clause inserted into the bill, which would in
its nature prevent a reference of the constitution back for a vote of
the people,--if, indeed, upon a mere silence in the law, it could be
assumed that they had the right to vote upon it. These are the
general statements that he has made.

I propose to examine the points in Judge Douglas's speech in which he
attempts to answer that speech of Judge Trumbull's. When you come to
examine Judge Douglas's speech, you will find that the first point he
makes is:

"Suppose it were true that there was such a change in the bill, and
that I struck it out,--is that a proof of a plot to force a
constitution upon them against their will?"

His striking out such a provision, if there was such a one in the
bill, he argues, does not establish the proof that it was stricken
out for the purpose of robbing the people of that right. I would
say, in the first place, that that would be a most manifest reason
for it. It is true, as Judge Douglas states, that many Territorial
bills have passed without having such a provision in them. I believe
it is true, though I am not certain, that in some instances
constitutions framed under such bills have been submitted to a vote
of the people with the law silent upon the subject; but it does not
appear that they once had their enabling acts framed with an express
provision for submitting the constitution to be framed to a vote of
the people, then that they were stricken out when Congress did not
mean to alter the effect of the law. That there have been bills
which never had the provision in, I do not question; but when was
that provision taken out of one that it was in? More especially does
the evidence tend to prove the proposition that Trumbull advanced,
when we remember that the provision was stricken out of the bill
almost simultaneously with the time that Bigler says there was a
conference among certain senators, and in which it was agreed that a
bill should be passed leaving that out. Judge Douglas, in answering
Trumbull, omits to attend to the testimony of Bigler, that there was
a meeting in which it was agreed they should so frame the bill that
there should be no submission of the constitution to a vote of the
people. The Judge does not notice this part of it. If you take this
as one piece of evidence, and then ascertain that simultaneously
Judge Douglas struck out a provision that did require it to be
submitted, and put the two together, I think it will make a pretty
fair show of proof that Judge Douglas did, as Trumbull says, enter
into a plot to put in force a constitution for Kansas, without giving
the people any opportunity of voting upon it.

But I must hurry on. The next proposition that Judge Douglas puts is

"But upon examination it turns out that the Toombs bill never did
contain a clause requiring the constitution to be submitted."

This is a mere question of fact, and can be determined by evidence.
I only want to ask this question: Why did not Judge Douglas say that
these words were not stricken out of the Toomb's bill, or this bill
from which it is alleged the provision was stricken out,--a bill
which goes by the name of Toomb's, because he originally brought it
forward? I ask why, if the Judge wanted to make a direct issue with
Trumbull, did he not take the exact proposition Trumbull made in his
speech, and say it was not stricken out? Trumbull has given the
exact words that he says were in the Toomb's bill, and he alleges
that when the bill came back, they were stricken out. Judge Douglas
does not say that the words which Trumbull says were stricken out
were not so stricken out, but he says there was no provision in the
Toomb's bill to submit the constitution to a vote of the people. We
see at once that he is merely making an issue upon the meaning of the
words. He has not undertaken to say that Trumbull tells a lie about
these words being stricken out, but he is really, when pushed up to
it, only taking an issue upon the meaning of the words. Now, then,
if there be any issue upon the meaning of the words, or if there be
upon the question of fact as to whether these words were stricken
out, I have before me what I suppose to be a genuine copy of the
Toomb's bill, in which it can be shown that the words Trumbull says
were in it were, in fact, originally there. If there be any dispute
upon the fact, I have got the documents here to show they were there.
If there be any controversy upon the sense of the words,--whether
these words which were stricken out really constituted a provision
for submitting the matter to a vote of the people,--as that is a
matter of argument, I think I may as well use Trumbull's own
argument. He says that the proposition is in these words:

"That the following propositions be and the same are hereby offered
to the said Convention of the people of Kansas when formed, for their
free acceptance or rejection; which, if accepted by the Convention
and ratified by the people at the election for the adoption of the
constitution, shall be obligatory upon the United States and the said
State of Kansas."

Now, Trumbull alleges that these last words were stricken out of the
bill when it came back, and he says this was a provision for
submitting the constitution to a vote of the people; and his argument
is this:

"Would it have been possible to ratify the land propositions at the
election for the adoption of the constitution, unless such an
election was to be held?"

This is Trumbull's argument. Now, Judge Douglas does not meet the
charge at all, but he stands up and says there was no such
proposition in that bill for submitting the constitution to be framed
to a vote of the people. Trumbull admits that the language is not a
direct provision for submitting it, but it is a provision necessarily
implied from another provision. He asks you how it is possible to
ratify the land proposition at the election for the adoption of the
constitution, if there was no election to be held for the adoption of
the constitution. And he goes on to show that it is not any less a
law because the provision is put in that indirect shape than it would
be if it were put directly. But I presume I have said enough to draw
attention to this point, and I pass it by also.

Another one of the points that Judge Douglas makes upon Trumbull, and
at very great length, is, that Trumbull, while the bill was pending,
said in a speech in the Senate that he supposed the constitution to
be made would have to be submitted to the people. He asks, if
Trumbull thought so then, what ground is there for anybody thinking
otherwise now? Fellow-citizens, this much may be said in reply: That
bill had been in the hands of a party to which Trumbull did not
belong. It had been in the hands of the committee at the head of
which Judge Douglas stood. Trumbull perhaps had a printed copy of
the original Toomb's bill. I have not the evidence on that point
except a sort of inference I draw from the general course of business
there. What alterations, or what provisions in the way of altering,
were going on in committee, Trumbull had no means of knowing, until
the altered bill was reported back. Soon afterwards, when it was
reported back, there was a discussion over it, and perhaps Trumbull
in reading it hastily in the altered form did not perceive all the
bearings of the alterations. He was hastily borne into the debate,
and it does not follow that because there was something in it
Trumbull did not perceive, that something did not exist. More than
this, is it true that what Trumbull did can have any effect on what
Douglas did? Suppose Trumbull had been in the plot with these other
men, would that let Douglas out of it? Would it exonerate Douglas
that Trumbull did n't then perceive he was in the plot? He also asks
the question: Why did n't Trumbull propose to amend the bill, if he
thought it needed any amendment? Why, I believe that everything
Judge Trumbull had proposed, particularly in connection with this
question of Kansas and Nebraska, since he had been on the floor of
the Senate, had been promptly voted down by Judge Douglas and his
friends. He had no promise that an amendment offered by him to
anything on this subject would receive the slightest consideration.
Judge Trumbull did bring to the notice of the Senate at that time the
fact that there was no provision for submitting the constitution
about to be made for the people of Kansas to a vote of the people. I
believe I may venture to say that Judge Douglas made some reply to
this speech of Judge Trumbull's, but he never noticed that part of it
at all. And so the thing passed by. I think, then, the fact that
Judge Trumbull offered no amendment does not throw much blame upon
him; and if it did, it does not reach the question of fact as to what
Judge Douglas was doing. I repeat, that if Trumbull had himself been
in the plot, it would not at all relieve the others who were in it
from blame. If I should be indicted for murder, and upon the trial
it should be discovered that I had been implicated in that murder,
but that the prosecuting witness was guilty too, that would not at
all touch the question of my crime. It would be no relief to my neck
that they discovered this other man who charged the crime upon me to
be guilty too.

Another one of the points Judge Douglas makes upon Judge Trumbull is,
that when he spoke in Chicago he made his charge to rest upon the
fact that the bill had the provision in it for submitting the
constitution to a vote of the people when it went into his Judge
Douglas's hands, that it was missing when he reported it to the
Senate, and that in a public speech he had subsequently said the
alterations in the bill were made while it was in committee, and that
they were made in consultation between him (Judge Douglas) and
Toomb's. And Judge Douglas goes on to comment upon the fact of
Trumbull's adducing in his Alton speech the proposition that the bill
not only came back with that proposition stricken out, but with
another clause and another provision in it, saying that "until the
complete execution of this Act there shall be no election in said
Territory,"--which, Trumbull argued, was not only taking the
provision for submitting to a vote of the people out of the bill, but
was adding an affirmative one, in that it prevented the people from
exercising the right under a bill that was merely silent on the
question. Now, in regard to what he says, that Trumbull shifts the
issue, that he shifts his ground,--and I believe he uses the term
that, "it being proven false, he has changed ground," I call upon all
of you, when you come to examine that portion of Trumbull's speech
(for it will make a part of mine), to examine whether Trumbull has
shifted his ground or not. I say he did not shift his ground, but
that he brought forward his original charge and the evidence to
sustain it yet more fully,
but precisely as he originally made it. Then, in addition thereto,
he brought in a new piece of evidence. He shifted no ground. He
brought no new piece of evidence inconsistent with his former
testimony; but he brought a new piece, tending, as he thought, and as
I think, to prove his proposition. To illustrate: A man brings an
accusation against another, and on trial the man making the charge
introduces A and B to prove the accusation. At a second trial he
introduces the same witnesses, who tell the same story as before, and
a third witness, who tells the same thing, and in addition gives
further testimony corroborative of the charge. So with Trumbull.
There was no shifting of ground, nor inconsistency of testimony
between the new piece of evidence and what he originally introduced.

But Judge Douglas says that he himself moved to strike out that last
provision of the bill, and that on his motion it was stricken out and
a substitute inserted. That I presume is the truth. I presume it is
true that that last proposition was stricken out by Judge Douglas.
Trumbull has not said it was not; Trumbull has himself said that it
was so stricken out. He says: "I am now speaking of the bill as
Judge Douglas reported it back. It was amended somewhat in the
Senate before it passed, but I am speaking of it as he brought it
back." Now, when Judge Douglas parades the fact that the provision
was stricken out of the bill when it came back, he asserts nothing
contrary to what Trumbull alleges. Trumbull has only said that he
originally put it in, not that he did not strike it out. Trumbull
says it was not in the bill when it went to the committee. When it
came back it was in, and Judge Douglas said the alterations were made
by him in consultation with Toomb's. Trumbull alleges, therefore, as
his conclusion, that Judge Douglas put it in. Then, if Douglas wants
to contradict Trumbull and call him a liar, let him say he did not
put it in, and not that he did n't take it out again. It is said
that a bear is sometimes hard enough pushed to drop a cub; and so I
presume it was in this case. I presume the truth is that Douglas put
it in, and afterward took it out. That, I take it, is the truth
about it. Judge Trumbull says one thing, Douglas says another thing,
and the two don't contradict one another at all. The question is,
what did he put it in for? In the first place, what did he take the
other provision out of the bill for,--the provision which Trumbull
argued was necessary for submitting the constitution to a vote of the
people? What did he take that out for; and, having taken it out,
what did he put this in for? I say that in the run of things it is
not unlikely forces conspire to render it vastly expedient for Judge
Douglas to take that latter clause out again. The question that
Trumbull has made is that Judge Douglas put it in; and he don't meet
Trumbull at all unless he denies that.

In the clause of Judge Douglas's speech upon this subject he uses
this language toward Judge Trumbull. He says:

"He forges his evidence from beginning to end; and by falsifying the
record, he endeavors to bolster up his false charge."

Well, that is a pretty serious statement--Trumbull forges his
evidence from beginning to end. Now, upon my own authority I say
that it is not true. What is a forgery? Consider the evidence that
Trumbull has brought forward. When you come to read the speech, as
you will be able to, examine whether the evidence is a forgery from
beginning to end. He had the bill or document in his hand like that
[holding up a paper]. He says that is a copy of the Toomb's bill,--
the amendment offered by Toomb's. He says that is a copy of the bill
as it was introduced and went into Judge Douglas's hands. Now, does
Judge Douglas say that is a forgery? That is one thing Trumbull
brought forward. Judge Douglas says he forged it from beginning to
end! That is the "beginning," we will say. Does Douglas say that is
a forgery? Let him say it to-day, and we will have a subsequent
examination upon this subject. Trumbull then holds up another
document like this, and says that is an exact copy of the bill as it
came back in the amended form out of Judge Douglas's hands. Does
Judge Douglas say that is a forgery? Does he say it in his general
sweeping charge? Does he say so now? If he does not, then take this
Toomb's bill and the bill in the amended form, and it only needs to
compare them to see that the provision is in the one and not in the
other; it leaves the inference inevitable that it was taken out.

But, while I am dealing with this question, let us see what
Trumbull's other evidence is. One other piece of evidence I will
read. Trumbull says there are in this original Toomb's bill these

"That the following propositions be and the same are hereby offered
to the said Convention of the people of Kansas, when formed, for
their free acceptance or rejection; which, if accepted by the
Convention and ratified by the people at the election for the
adoption of the constitution, shall be obligatory upon the United
States and the said State of Kansas."

Now, if it is said that this is a forgery, we will open the paper
here and see whether it is or not. Again, Trumbull says, as he goes
along, that Mr. Bigler made the following statement in his place in
the Senate, December 9, 1857:

"I was present when that subject was discussed by senators before the
bill was introduced, and the question was raised and discussed,
whether the constitution, when formed, should be submitted to a vote
of the people. It was held by those most intelligent on the subject
that, in view of all the difficulties surrounding that Territory, the
danger of any experiment at that time of a popular vote, it would be
better there should be no such provision in the Toomb's bill; and it
was my understanding, in all the intercourse I had, that the
Convention would make a constitution, and send it here, without
submitting it to the popular vote."

Then Trumbull follows on:

"In speaking of this meeting again on the 21st December, 1857
[Congressional Globe, same vol., page 113], Senator Bigler said:

"'Nothing was further from my mind than to allude to any social or
confidential interview. The meeting was not of that character.
Indeed, it was semi-official, and called to promote the public good.
My recollection was clear that I left the conference under the
impression that it had been deemed best to adopt measures to admit
Kansas as a State through the agency of one popular election, and
that for delegates to this Convention. This impression was stronger
because I thought the spirit of the bill infringed upon the doctrine
of non-intervention, to which I had great aversion; but with the hope
of accomplishing a great good, and as no movement had been made in
that direction in the Territory, I waived this objection, and
concluded to support the measure. I have a few items of testimony as
to the correctness of these impressions, and with their submission I
shall be content. I have before me the bill reported by the senator
from Illinois on the 7th of March, 1856, providing for the admission
of Kansas as a State, the third section of which reads as follows:

"That the following propositions be, and the same are hereby offered
to the said Convention of the people of Kansas, when formed, for
their free acceptance or rejection; which, if accepted by the
Convention and ratified by the people at the election for the
adoption of the constitution, shall be obligatory upon the United
States and the said State of Kansas."

The bill read in his place by the senator from Georgia on the 25th of
June, and referred to the Committee on Territories, contained the
same section word for word. Both these bills were under
consideration at the conference referred to; but, sir, when the
senator from Illinois reported the Toombs bill to the Senate with
amendments, the next morning, it did not contain that portion of the
third section which indicated to the Convention that the constitution
should be approved by the people. The words 'and ratified by the
people at the election for the adoption of the constitution" had been
stricken out.'"

Now, these things Trumbull says were stated by Bigler upon the floor
of the Senate on certain days, and that they are recorded in the
Congressional Globe on certain pages. Does Judge Douglas say this is
a forgery? Does he say there is no such thing in the Congressional
Globe? What does he mean when he says Judge Trumbull forges his
evidence from beginning to end? So again he says in another place
that Judge Douglas, in his speech, December 9, 1857 (Congressional
Globe, part I., page 15), stated:

"That during the last session of Congress, I [Mr. Douglas] reported a
bill from the Committee on Territories, to authorize the people of
Kansas to assemble and form a constitution for themselves.
Subsequently the senator from Georgia [Mr. Toombs] brought forward a
substitute for my bill, which, after having been modified by him and
myself in consultation, was passed by the Senate."

Now, Trumbull says this is a quotation from a speech of Douglas, and
is recorded in the Congressional Globe. Is it a forgery? Is it
there or not? It may not be there, but I want the Judge to take
these pieces of evidence, and distinctly say they are forgeries if he
dare do it.

[A voice: "He will."]

Well, sir, you had better not commit him. He gives other quotations,
--another from Judge Douglas. He says:

"I will ask the senator to show me an intimation, from any one member
of the Senate, in the whole debate on the Toombs bill, and in the
Union, from any quarter, that the constitution was not to be
submitted to the people. I will venture to say that on all sides of
the chamber it was so understood at the time. If the opponents of
the bill had understood it was not, they would have made the point on
it; and if they had made it, we should certainly have yielded to it,
and put in the clause. That is a discovery made since the President
found out that it was not safe to take it for granted that that would
be done, which ought in fairness to have been done."

Judge Trumbull says Douglas made that speech, and it is recorded.
Does Judge Douglas say it is a forgery, and was not true? Trumbull
says somewhere, and I propose to skip it, but it will be found by any
one who will read this debate, that he did distinctly bring it to the
notice of those who were engineering the bill, that it lacked that
provision; and then he goes on to give another quotation from Judge
Douglas, where Judge Trumbull uses this language:

"Judge Douglas, however, on the same day and in the same debate,
probably recollecting or being reminded of the fact that I had
objected to the Toombs bill when pending that it did not provide for
a submission of the constitution to the people, made another
statement, which is to be found in the same volume of the Globe, page
22, in which he says:
'That the bill was silent on this subject was true, and my attention
was called to that about the time it was passed; and I took the fair
construction to be, that powers not delegated were reserved, and that
of course the constitution would be submitted to the people.'

"Whether this statement is consistent with the statement just before
made, that had the point been made it would have been yielded to, or
that it was a new discovery, you will determine."

So I say. I do not know whether Judge Douglas will dispute this, and
yet maintain his position that Trumbull's evidence "was forged from
beginning to end." I will remark that I have not got these
Congressional Globes with me. They are large books, and difficult to
carry about, and if Judge Douglas shall say that on these points
where Trumbull has quoted from them there are no such passages there,
I shall not be able to prove they are there upon this occasion, but I
will have another chance. Whenever he points out the forgery and
says, "I declare that this particular thing which Trumbull has
uttered is not to be found where he says it is," then my attention
will be drawn to that, and I will arm myself for the contest, stating
now that I have not the slightest doubt on earth that I will find
every quotation just where Trumbull says it is. Then the question
is, How can Douglas call that a forgery? How can he make out that it
is a forgery? What is a forgery? It is the bringing forward
something in writing or in print purporting to be of certain effect
when it is altogether untrue. If you come forward with my note for
one hundred dollars when I have never given such a note, there is a
forgery. If you come forward with a letter purporting to be written
by me which I never wrote, there is another forgery. If you produce
anything in writing or in print saying it is so and so, the document
not being genuine, a forgery has been committed. How do you make
this forgery when every piece of the evidence is genuine? If Judge
Douglas does say these documents and quotations are false and forged,
he has a full right to do so; but until he does it specifically, we
don't know how to get at him. If he does say they are false and
forged, I will then look further into it, and presume I can procure
the certificates of the proper officers that they are genuine copies.
I have no doubt each of these extracts will be found exactly where
Trumbull says it is. Then I leave it to you if Judge Douglas, in
making his sweeping charge that Judge Trumbull's evidence is forged
from beginning to end, at all meets the case,--if that is the way to
get at the facts. I repeat again, if he will point out which one is
a forgery, I will carefully examine it, and if it proves that any one
of them is really a forgery, it will not be me who will hold to it
any longer. I have always wanted to deal with everyone I meet
candidly and honestly. If I have made any assertion not warranted by
facts, and it is pointed out to me, I will withdraw it cheerfully.
But I do not choose to see Judge Trumbull calumniated, and the
evidence he has brought forward branded in general terms "a forgery
from beginning to end." This is not the legal way of meeting a
charge, and I submit it to all intelligent persons, both friends of
Judge Douglas and of myself, whether it is.

The point upon Judge Douglas is this: The bill that went into his
hands had the provision in it for a submission of the constitution to
the people; and I say its language amounts to an express provision
for a submission, and that he took the provision out. He says it was
known that the bill was silent in this particular; but I say, Judge
Douglas, it was not silent when you got it. It was vocal with the
declaration, when you got it, for a submission of the constitution to
the people. And now, my direct question to Judge Douglas is, to
answer why, if he deemed the bill silent on this point, he found it
necessary to strike out those particular harmless words. If he had
found the bill silent and without this provision, he might say what
he does now. If he supposes it was implied that the constitution
would be submitted to a vote of the people, how could these two lines
so encumber the statute as to make it necessary to strike them out?
How could he infer that a submission was still implied, after its
express provision had been stricken from the bill? I find the bill
vocal with the provision, while he silenced it. He took it out, and
although he took out the other provision preventing a submission to a
vote of the people, I ask, Why did you first put it in? I ask him
whether he took the original provision out, which Trumbull alleges
was in the bill. If he admits that he did take it, I ask him what he
did it for. It looks to us as if he had altered the bill. If it
looks differently to him,--if he has a different reason for his
action from the one we assign him--he can tell it. I insist upon
knowing why he made the bill silent upon that point when it was vocal
before he put his hands upon it.

I was told, before my last paragraph, that my time was within three
minutes of being out. I presume it is expired now; I therefore


FELLOW-CITIZENS: It follows as a matter of course that a half-hour
answer to a speech of an hour and a half can be but a very hurried
one. I shall only be able to touch upon a few of the points
suggested by Judge Douglas, and give them a brief attention, while I
shall have to totally omit others for the want of time.

Judge Douglas has said to you that he has not been able to get from
me an answer to the question whether I am in favor of negro
citizenship. So far as I know the Judge never asked me the question
before. He shall have no occasion to ever ask it again, for I tell
him very frankly that I am not in favor of negro citizenship. This
furnishes me an occasion for saying a few words upon the subject. I
mentioned in a certain speech of mine, which has been printed, that
the Supreme Court had decided that a negro could not possibly be made
a citizen; and without saying what was my ground of complaint in
regard to that, or whether I had any ground of complaint, Judge
Douglas has from that thing manufactured nearly everything that he
ever says about my disposition to produce an equality between the
negroes and the white people. If any one will read my speech, he
will find I mentioned that as one of the points decided in the course
of the Supreme Court opinions, but I did not state what objection I
had to it. But Judge Douglas tells the people what my objection was
when I did not tell them myself. Now, my opinion is that the
different States have the power to make a negro a citizen under the
Constitution of the United States if they choose. The Dred Scott
decision decides that they have not that power. If the State of
Illinois had that power, I should be opposed to the exercise of it.
That is all I have to say about it.

Judge Douglas has told me that he heard my speeches north and my
speeches south; that he had heard me at Ottawa and at Freeport in the
north and recently at Jonesboro in the south, and there was a very
different cast of sentiment in the speeches made at the different
points. I will not charge upon Judge Douglas that he wilfully
misrepresents me, but I call upon every fair-minded man to take these
speeches and read them, and I dare him to point out any difference
between my speeches north and south. While I am here perhaps I ought
to say a word, if I have the time, in regard to the latter portion of
the Judge's speech, which was a sort of declamation in reference to
my having said I entertained the belief that this government would
not endure half slave and half free. I have said so, and I did not
say it without what seemed to me to be good reasons. It perhaps
would require more time than I have now to set forth these reasons in
detail; but let me ask you a few questions. Have we ever had any
peace on this slavery question? When are we to have peace upon it,
if it is kept in the position it now occupies? How are we ever to
have peace upon it? That is an important question. To be sure, if
we will all stop, and allow Judge Douglas and his friends to march on
in their present career until they plant the institution all over the
nation, here and wherever else our flag waves, and we acquiesce in
it, there will be peace. But let me ask Judge Douglas how he is
going to get the people to do that? They have been wrangling over
this question for at least forty years. This was the cause of the
agitation resulting in the Missouri Compromise; this produced the
troubles at the annexation of Texas, in the acquisition of the
territory acquired in the Mexican War. Again, this was the trouble
which was quieted by the Compromise of 1850, when it was settled
"forever" as both the great political parties declared in their
National Conventions. That "forever" turned out to be just four
years, when Judge Douglas himself reopened it. When is it likely to
come to an end? He introduced the Nebraska Bill in 1854 to put
another end to the slavery agitation. He promised that it would
finish it all up immediately, and he has never made a speech since,
until he got into a quarrel with the President about the Lecompton
Constitution, in which he has not declared that we are just at the
end of the slavery agitation. But in one speech, I think last
winter, he did say that he did n't quite see when the end of the
slavery agitation would come. Now he tells us again that it is all
over and the people of Kansas have voted down the Lecompton
Constitution. How is it over? That was only one of the attempts at
putting an end to the slavery agitation--one of these "final
settlements." Is Kansas in the Union? Has she formed a constitution
that she is likely to come in under? Is not the slavery agitation
still an open question in that Territory? Has the voting down of
that constitution put an end to all the trouble? Is that more likely
to settle it than every one of these previous attempts to settle the
slavery agitation? Now, at this day in the history of the world we
can no more foretell where the end of this slavery agitation will be
than we can see the end of the world itself. The Nebraska-Kansas
Bill was introduced four years and a half ago, and if the agitation
is ever to come to an end we may say we are four years and a half
nearer the end. So, too, we can say we are four years and a half
nearer the end of the world, and we can just as clearly see the end
of the world as we can see the end of this agitation. The Kansas
settlement did not conclude it. If Kansas should sink to-day, and
leave a great vacant space in the earth's surface, this vexed
question would still be among us. I say, then, there is no way of
putting an end to the slavery agitation amongst us but to put it back
upon the basis where our fathers placed it; no way but to keep it out
of our new Territories,--to restrict it forever to the old States
where it now exists. Then the public mind will rest in the belief
that it is in the course of ultimate extinction. That is one way of
putting an end to the slavery agitation.

The other way is for us to surrender and let Judge Douglas and his
friends have their way and plant slavery over all the States; cease
speaking of it as in any way a wrong; regard slavery as one of the
common matters of property, and speak of negroes as we do of our
horses and cattle. But while it drives on in its state of progress
as it is now driving, and as it has driven for the last five years, I
have ventured the opinion, and I say to-day, that we will have no end
to the slavery agitation until it takes one turn or the other. I do
not mean that when it takes a turn toward ultimate extinction it will
be in a day, nor in a year, nor in two years. I do not suppose that
in the most peaceful way ultimate extinction would occur in less than
a hundred years at least; but that it will occur in the best way for
both races, in God's own good time, I have no doubt. But, my
friends, I have used up more of my time than I intended on this

Now, in regard to this matter about Trumbull and myself having made a
bargain to sell out the entire Whig and Democratic parties in 1854:
Judge Douglas brings forward no evidence to sustain his charge,
except the speech Matheny is said to have made in 1856, in which he
told a cock-and-bull story of that sort, upon the same moral
principles that Judge Douglas tells it here to-day. This is the
simple truth. I do not care greatly for the story, but this is the
truth of it: and I have twice told Judge Douglas to his face that
from beginning to end there is not one word of truth in it. I have
called upon him for the proof, and he does not at all meet me as
Trumbull met him upon that of which we were just talking, by
producing the record. He did n't bring the record because there was
no record for him to bring. When he asks if I am ready to indorse
Trumbull's veracity after he has broken a bargain with me, I reply
that if Trumbull had broken a bargain with me I would not be likely
to indorse his veracity; but I am ready to indorse his veracity
because neither in that thing, nor in any other, in all the years
that I have known Lyman Trumbull, have I known him to fail of his
word or tell a falsehood large or small. It is for that reason that
I indorse Lyman Trumbull.

[Mr. JAMES BROWN (Douglas postmaster): "What does Ford's History say

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