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[144] Wrentham; and Mr. Hammond of South Carolina, moved that it be not received; which was met by a motion to lay on the table. This was rejected — Yeas 95, Nays 121. But, finally, a proposition that the petition and all motions regarding it be laid on the table was carried — Yeas 140; Nays 76.

Mr. Buchanan1 presented a memorial of the Cain (Pennsylvania) quarterly meeting of Friends, asking for the same in substance as the above. Though opposed to granting the prayer of the petition, he preferred its reference to a Select Committee or that on the District. But, finding that there were insurmountable obstacles to such a reference, he would move that the memorial be read, and that the prayer of the memorialists be rejected. The question being demanded on Mr. Buchanan's motion, it was carried by the decisive vote of 34 to 6.

Mr. Morris, of Ohio, soon after presented similar memorials from his State; whereupon Mr. Calhoun raised the question of reception, declaring “that the petitions just read contained a gross, false, and malicious slander on eleven States represented on this floor.” “That Congress had no jurisdiction over the subject, no more in this District than in the State of South Carolina.” After a long and spirited debate, mainly by Southern senators, Mr. Calhoun's motion to reject was defeated by a vote to receive the petition — Yeas 35, Nays 10, as follows:

Yeas: Messrs. Benton, Brown, Buchanan, Clay, Clayton, Crittenden, Davis, Ewing of Illinois, Ewing of Ohio, Goldsborough, Grundy, Hendricks, Hill, Hubbard, Kent, King of Alabama, King of Georgia, Knight, Linn, McKean, Morris, Naudain, Niles, Prentiss, Robbins, Robinson, Ruggles, Shepley, Southard, Swift, Tallmadge, Tipton, Tomlinson, Wall, Webster, Wright. Nays: Messrs. Black, Calhoun, Cuthbert, Leigh, Moore, Nicholas, Porter, Preston, Walker, White.

In the House,2 Mr. Henry L. Pinckney, of South Carolina, submitted the following resolve:

Resolved, That all the memorials which have been offered, or may hereafter be presented to this House, praying for the abolition of Slavery in the District of Columbia, and also the resolutions offered by an honorable member from Maine (Mr. Jarvis), with the amendment thereto, proposed by an honorable member from Virginia (Mr. Wise), and every other paper or proposition that may be submitted in relation to that subject, be referred to a Select Committee, with instructions to report that Congress has no constitutional authority to interfere in any way with the institution of Slavery in any of the States of this confederacy; and that, in the opinion of this House, Congress ought not to interfere in any way with Slavery in the District of Columbia, because it would be a violation of the public faith, unwise, impolitic, and dangerous to the Union; assigning such reasons for these conclusions as, in the judgment of the Committee, may be best calculated to enlighten the public mind, to repress agitation, to allay excitement, to sustain and preserve the just rights of the slave-holding States, and of the people of this District, and to reestablish harmony and tranquillity amongst the various sections of the Union.

After some demur by Mr. Hammond, of South Carolina, and Mr. Wise, of Virginia, the Previous Question was ordered on this resolve — Yeas 118, Nays 47. Mr. Vinton, of Ohio, now demanded a division of the resolve into three parts, which demand was sustained by the Chair; and the first proposition, requiring a reference of all memorials on this subject to a Select Committee, was carried — Yeas 174, Nays 48: the Nays all from the South. The second proposition, regarding Slavery

1 January 11, 1836.

2 February 5, 1836.

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