Kept by the South.
But never was the power of persistent misstatement so signally exhibited as in the accepted belief that this compromise, reluctantly assented to by the South
as one in derogation of her rights, was by the South
broken and by the North
The opposition to the compromise came invariably from the North
, whenever the South
was the beneficiary of it. It was the South
which proposed the
extension of the line to the Pacific
and the North
which rejected it. The settlement of 1820 had been already dishonored by denial, and by denial from the North
, when, in 1850, it was ignored and annulled on both sides of the line.
This was the exceeding wickedness of the South
—to think that the name should correspond with the reality; to think that when the reality had ceased to exist the utility of the name was not excessive; that when the practical operation of the compromise had been repudiated by the North
, with every expression of scorn and contempt, the dead letter need cumber the statute-book no longer.
And, after all, what was the practical effect of such a settlement, as derived from actual experience?
It had been witnessed in the case of New Mexico
(the most important of the Territories
), which had been organized for more than ten years, which was open to slavery by the settlement of 1850, whose climate was suitable, which adjoined Texas
It had an area of two million square miles, and at the end of ten years there were upon its soil only twenty-two slaves, and of these only ten were domiciled.
Did it injure the negro?
Did it augment slavery?