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[22] adapted to slave labor. Why did not the abstract opinions and sentiments set forth by Mr. Jefferson and the M. E. Church, and which are supposed to have given birth to the emancipation laws of the Northern States, operate to retain within those States the large portion of slave population then held, and secure their practical freedom? Why did they escape the supposed charity of these doctrines, and find their way, not as freemen, but as slaves, to a climate and soil more congenial to their nature and destiny? Are these doctrines real abstract truths, as their advocates profess to believe them to be? Then they are fundamental — they are vital — they are life-giving, and can never fail to impress their own essential character upon every system to which they are applied. The citizens of the Northern States adopted these doctrines. Then it was an affair of conscience. Emancipation laws were said to be the result. But that these laws, supposed to be founded in the belief of certain great abstract truths, which secured to the African his civil freedom, should operate only to transfer him to a climate and soil better suited to his condition as a slave, is a phenomenon for which the hypothesis does not ac,count. And again, the institution itself, of domestic slavery, by reason of causes which are evidently, though mysteriously, at work, is this

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Thomas Jefferson (1)
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