Therefore, until that portion of the citizens of Massachusetts3 whose rights were violated by the article in the Missouri Compromise, should be redintegrated in the full enjoyment and possession of those rights, no clause or article of the Constitution of the United States should, within the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, be so understood as to authorize any person whatsoever to claim the property or possession of a human being as a slave; and he would prohibit by law the delivery of any fugitive upon the claim of his master. All which, he said, should be done, not to violate, but to redeem from violation, the Constitution of the United States. It was, indeed, to be expected that such laws would again be met by retaliatory laws of Missouri and the other slaveholding States, and the consequences would be a dissolution de facto of the Union; but
This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.