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[451] the mouth of a certain river, for the purpose of erecting fortifications thereon, they proceed at once, without asking his consent, to exercise directly this reserved right of eminent domain and compel him, nolens volens, to give up the land. In these days of civilization they pay him the value of the land as a farm or a fishery, or as a watering-place, but they do not pay him its value as a site of defence against invasion by a public enemy; and no power exists whereby they could be compelled to pay him any price.

Let the United States Government, however, desire to purchase tomorrow for any public purpose from Richard Roe his farm of two hundred acres of land occupying a certain point jutting out into the water from the left bank of the Delaware river, and let the Government offer him thrice its value as a farm, or a fishery, or a bathing-beach; yet if he should say to the Government, “You shan't have it at any price,” that Government would stand before him helpless and with no more rights or authority in the case than the Government of Great Britain would. And this one individual could rightfully keep the General Government at bay and prevent its taking possession of the land until his real and only sovereign, the State of New Jersey, should take the land from him and permit the General Government, through a formal deed of cession to possess and occupy the land, but in such manner and for such purposes only as New Jersey might choose to dictate and specify in the deed of cession.1

What becomes now of Judge Story's “one whole people” as a political community, and having as such, any power whatever?

What, too, under this ample exposition of a plain fact of the Constitution, becomes of that much lauded and oft-repeated nonsensical twaddle and clap-trap, uttered by that vastly over-rated individual, Abraham Lincoln, viz: “the government of the people, by the people, for the people” ?

Of course no such government as Lincoln meant to indicate by that senseless phrase ever existed, or does now exist, on the area of territory occupied by the United States of America. Each separate State Government in the present Union is indeed, in the broadest and most comprehensive

1 The General Government as the agent of the States can, to be sure, rightfully exercise the right of eminent domain in the soil of all lands belonging in common to all the States, and not lying within the boundaries of any State. The 2d clause of section 3d of Article IV of the Constitution vests such power in Congress or the Government; but take notice, that clause does not say the lands or territory referred to belong to the Government, but it expressly says, “* * * the territory or other property belonging to the United States.”

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