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Evening session.

The Committee met at 4 o'clock, and was called to order by Mr. Price, of Greenbrier.

Mr. Wise resumed the floor and proceeded to comment on the position occupied by the gentleman from Portsmouth (Mr. Holladay) in the morning, after which he made an argument on secession, which, he said, those who advocated the report of the majority might yet be called on to support. He contended that the report denied the possession of sovereignty, while it maintained the right to withdraw from the Confederacy. He asked what would shield them, when they came to this, but the independent sovereignty of the State? The Commonwealth, he argued, reserved all her sovereignty, in reserving the right of resuming her powers. He wanted to be placed on safer ground than revolutionary ground. The ground he desired to occupy was the ground of State-rights and State sovereignty. The shield of law must be thrown around the people, to protect and guard them, and with this assurance they may safely raise the flag of revolution. When all was done, consistent with the law, State and Federal, if no one else would raise that flag, he would; and if that be treason, make the most of it.

Mr. Macfarland said that he had no reference to ulterior objects, but elementary and primary objects. He asked whether an intelligent people could be justified in violating the terms of their own agreement? Did any one deny that Virginia had delegated to the General Government a variety of powers which concerned her internal interests? Could any one maintain that, after this delegation, Virginia had reserved her powers? In defining the term "sovereign," he contended that no one could be sovereign who depended for subsistence upon a superior power. So long as Va. remains in the Union, she is liable to all the laws of Congress. Would any one say that while Va. acknowledges the jurisdiction of the Federal Government, he would muster a force to resist the execution of its laws? The direction of Mr. Macfarland's argument was, that while Virginia remained in and claimed the benefits of the Union, she must acknowledge its supremacy. No power on earth was "sovereign," from whose award there was an appeal. He thought if we acknowledged the amendment proposed, we should not only commit an error in theory, but be guilty of a mal-application of terms. He hoped that the gentleman from Princess Anne, if he should hereafter notice his argument, would confine himself to a reply to the question, Can a State be absolutely sovereign who has delegated her material powers to another Government?

Mr. Wise had never heard such a catalogue of questions so often reiterated. Bean Brummell before George the Third, with all his impudence, never did exceed the bold bravery of the old Federalism which spouts out from the gentleman from Richmond. The mountain which he had raised did not reach the magnitude of a mole-hill. Mr. Wise proceeded to define the term "sovereignty," and cited the examples of the Papal States, and Turkey in Europe, who were sovereign, though subject to the dominion of a controlling power. He denied that the thirteen original States of this Union, in delegating their powers to the Federal Government, also resigned their sovereignty. It was not a gift, but a grant in trust, which deprived the grantor of nothing.

Mr. Wise continued to discuss the subject in a general way, for some time, urging his views with much force.

Mr. Moore, of Rockbridge, asked the Chair if the rule excluding gentlemen from speaking more than twice on any question applied to the Committee of the Whole?

The Chairman answered negatively.

Mr. Moore said it was a pity it did not.

Mr. Seawell, of Gloucester, offered an amendment to the amendment offered by the gentleman from Middlesex, namely, to insert in the fifth line, after the word ‘"sovereignties,"’ the words, ‘"and still are sovereign,"’ leaving the resolution in other respects as reported from the committee.

Mr. Montague accepted the amendment.

Mr. Seawell then briefly urged it upon the favorable consideration of the Committee.--He had offered it very much in consequence of expressions in this hall, touching the phraseology of the resolution itself. His amendment obviated all objections urged in that respect towards the amendment previously offered. At the close of his remarks, the Committee rose, and reported progress, Mr. Janney having resumed the chair.

Limitation of debate.

Mr. Carlile offered the following resolution:

Resolved, That debate in Committee of the Whole on the reports of the Committee on Federal Relations shall terminate on Monday next, at 12 o'clock M.

Mr. Carlile demanded the previous question on his resolution.

After some confused discussion of points of order, the President decided that, under the rule, any member could speak ten minutes upon the previous question.

The resolution was then opposed by Messrs. Johnson of Richmond, Woods of Barbour, Mallory of Brunswick, Barbour of Culpeper, Wise of Princess Anne, Blakey of Madison, and Harvie of Amelia, and favored by Messrs, Conrad of Frederick, and Jackson of Wood.

Mr. Branch, of Petersburg, was in favor of compromise, and moved to amend by substituting Friday week for Monday next.

Decided out of order, the previous question having been called.

The call for the previous question being sustained, the main question was put.

Mr. Carlile demanded the yeas and nays, and the vote resulted as follows:

Yeas.--Messrs Armstrong, Aston, Baylor, Berlin, Boggess, Brown, Burdett, Burley, Byrne, Carlile, Carter, C.B. Conrad, Robt. Y. Conrad, Couch, Jas. H Cox, Custis, Deskins, Dorman, Dulany, Early, French, Fugate, Gillespie, Gray, A. Hall, E. B. Hall, Haymond, Hoge, Holiday, Hubbard, Hughes, Hall, Jackson, P. C. Johnstone, Kilby, Lewis, McComas, McGrew, McNeil, Macfarland, Marshall, Marr, Maslin, Masters, Moffett, Moore, Orrick, Osburn, Parks, Pendleton, Porter, Price, Pugh. Wm. C. Scott, Sharp, Sitlington, Spurlock, A. H. H. Stuart, C. J. Stuart, Summers, Tarr, Taylor, Whitfield, Wickham, Willey, and Wilson--66.

Nays.--Messrs. Janney, (President,) Ambler, Baldwin, A. M. Barbour, Jas. Barbour, Blakey, Blow, Boisseau, Borst, Boyd, Branch, Brent, Cabell, Campbell, Chambliss, Chapman, Coffman, Coun, Richard H. Cox, Echols, Fisher, Flourney, Forbes, Garland, Graham, Gravely, Gregory, Goggin, John Goode, T. F. Goode, C. Hall, L. S. Hall, Hammond, Harvie, Holcombe, Hunton, Isbell, Marmaduke Johnson, Kent, Lawson, Leake, Chas. K. Mallory, Jas. B. Mallory, Marye, Miller, Montague, Morris, Morton, Neblett, Nelson, Preston, Randolph, Richardson, Rives, Robert E. Scott, Seawell, Sheffey, Slaughter, Speed, Staples, Strange, Sutherlin, Thornton, Tredway, R. H. Turner, Tyler, Wailer, Williams, Wise, and Woods--70.

So the resolution was lost.

On motion of Mr. Goode, of Mecklenburg, the Convention adjourned.

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