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Maine provided that no public officer of the State should arrest or aid in so doing, or in detaining in any building belonging to the State, or any county or town within it, any alleged fugitive slaves; so that duty was left to the United States officers. The laws of New Hampshire provided that any slave coming into that State by the consent of the master should be free, and declared that an attempt to hold any person as a slave within the State was a felony, unless done by an officer of the United States in the execution of legal process. This was to relieve the people of the duty of becoming slave-catchers by command of the United States officers. The law in Vermont provided that judicial officers of the State should take no cognizance of any warrant or process under the fugitive slave law, and that no person should assist in the removal of any alleged fugitive from the State, excepting United States officers. It also ordered that the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, and a trial of facts by a jury, should be given to the alleged fugitive, with the State's attorney for counsel. This was a nullification of the fugitive slave law. The law in Massachusetts provided for trial by jury of  alleged fugitive slaves, who might have the services of any attorney. It forbade the issuing of any process under the fugitive slave law by any legal officer in the State, or “to do any official act in furtherance of the execution of the fugitive slave law of 1793 or that of 1850.” It forbade the use of any prison in the State for the same purpose. All public officers were forbidden to assist in the arrest of alleged fugitive slaves, and no officer in the State, acting as United States commissioner, was allowed to issue any warrant, excepting for the summoning of witnesses, nor allowed to hear and try any cause under the law. This, also, was a virtual nullification of the fugitive slave law. The law in Connecticut was intended only to prevent the kidnapping of free persons of color within its borders, by imposing a heavy penalty upon those who should cause to be arrested any free colored person with the intent to reduce him or her to slavery. The law in Rhode Island forbade the carrying away of any person by force out of the State, and provided that no public officer should officially aid in the execution of the fugitive slave law, and denied the use of the jails for that purpose. Neither New York, New Jersey, nor Pennsylvania passed any laws on the subject, their statutebooks already containing acts which they deemed sufficient to meet the case. The law in Michigan secured to the person arrested the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, a trial by jury, and the employment of the State's attorney as counsel. It denied the use of the jails in the execution of the fugitive slave law, and imposed a heavy penalty for the arrest of free colored persons as fugitive slaves. The law in Wisconsin was precisely like that of Michigan. The remainder of the free-labor States refrained from passing any laws on the subject.
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