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[135] Anti-Slavery Society at Kennett, in August. In Ohio, the1 Anti-Slavery Bugle was founded as the disunion organ of the Ohio American Anti-Slavery Society.2

The levers of disunion ready to the hands of the Massachusetts abolitionists were the recent expulsions of the3 State's delegates from South Carolina and Louisiana, and the impending annexation of Texas. At the annual meeting just referred to, Wendell Phillips reported4 resolves that the Governor should demand of the Federal Executive an enforcement of the Constitution, and the maintenance of Mr. Hoar's right to reside in Charleston; in default of which the Legislature should authorize the Governor to proclaim the Union at an end, recall the Congressional delegation, and provide for the State's foreign relations. This was the logic of the situation. So far as Massachusetts (or any free State) was concerned, South Carolina had dissolved the Union: Federal rights were disregarded in her borders, the Federal laws were subordinate or inoperative, Federal protection could have been exercised only by force and at the cost of a civil war. There could be no better occasion for weighing the value of the Union, or for taking the initiative in peaceable separation as advocated by the abolitionists. But no other class or party in the State was equal to this simple and manly procedure. Governor Briggs's messages in5 regard to Messrs. Hoar and Hubbard were unexceptionable in tone and temper, rhetorically considered; but they meant nothing and could effect nothing, since disunion was the only remedy. The Legislature did, indeed, pass the equally unexceptionable joint resolves prepared by6 Charles Francis Adams, suggesting retaliation with reference to South Carolina; but no enactment followed, nor, notoriously, could any such have been sustained in the Federal courts.

The same paralysis befell the political opposition to the annexation of Texas. Governor and Legislature pledged7 Massachusetts anew to the position that annexation would have no binding force on her. But how would it have no

1 Aug. 11-13; Lib. 15.135, 142.

2 Lib. 15.109.

3 Ante, pp. 130, 131.

4 Lib. 15.19.

5 Lib. 15.7, 25.

6 Lib. 15.25, 39.

7 Lib. 15.6, 26, 31.

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