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[75] moved its indefinite postponement, which was defeated — Yeas 69, Nays 74. But the question next presented, of concurrence in the Senate's amendment aforesaid, was decided in the negative — Yeas 76, Nays 78; and the bill returned to the Senate accordingly. The Senate insisted on its amendment without a division; and, on the return of the bill to the House, Mr. John W. Taylor,1 of New York, moved that the House adhere to its disagreement; which prevailed — Yeas 78, Nays 66. And so the bill failed for that session.

A bill, organizing so much of the Territory of Missouri as was not included within the borders of the proposed State of that name, to be known as the Territory of Arkansas, was considered at this session, and Mr. Taylor, of New York, moved the application thereto of the restriction aforesaid. So much of it as required that all slaves born within the Territory after the passage of this act should be free at twenty-five years of age, was carried,2 by 75 Yeas to 72 Nays, and the residue defeated by 70 Yeas to 71 Nays. Next day, however, the adopted clause was reconsidered and stricken out, and the bill ultimately passed without any reference to Slavery. Arkansas became in consequence a Slave Territory, and ultimately a Slave State.

A new Congress convened December 6, 1819; and Mr. Scott3 moved a reference to a Select Committee of the memorials from Missouri, including that of her Territorial Legislature, asking admission into the Union. This motion prevailed, and Mr. Speaker Clay appointed as such Committee three members from Slave States, beside Mr. Scott, who was chairman, with but one from a Free State. In the Senate, the legislative memorial aforesaid was referred to the Judiciary Committee, consisting of three members from Slave States with but two from Free States.

Upon the conflict which ensued, the Slave Power entered with very great incidental advantages. The President, Mr. Monroe, though he took no conspicuous part in the strife, was well known to favor that side, as did a majority of his Cabinet, so that the patronage of the Government and the hopes of aspirants to its favor were powerful make-weights against the policy of Restriction. The two ex-Presidents of the dominant party, Messrs. Jefferson and Madison, still survived, and gave their powerful influence openly in accordance with their Southern sympathies rather than their Anti-Slavery convictions. Mr. Clay, the popular and potent Speaker of the House, though likewise Anti-Slavery in principle, was a zealous and most efficient adversary of Restriction. The natural fears of a destruction, or at least a temporary prostration, of the Republican ascendency, through the reformation of parties on what were called geographical lines, also tended strongly to defeat the proposed inhibition of Slavery. The North, it had by this time come to be understood, if beaten in such a struggle, would quietly submit; while the South, it was very clearly intimated and generally believed, would shiver all party bands, and perhaps even the Union itself, rather than submit to a defeat on this issue.

1 Some years afterward, Speaker of the House.

2 February 17th.

3 December 8th.

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