. . . I will show before I am done that Seward, by his own declaration,
knew of the Harper's Ferry affair. If I succeed in showing that,
then he, like John Brown, deserves, I think, the gallows, for
his participation in it. (Applause.)
Mr. Seward: "There is a meaning in all these facts, which
it becomes us to study well. The nation has advanced another
stage; it has reached the point where intervention by the Government,
for slavery and slave States, will no longer be tolerated."
is that stage to which the Union has advanced? The slave States
had a majority in both branches of Congress once, whereas now
the free States are seventeen, and the slave States only fifteen
in this Union. There has been a transfer of the majorities in
Congress from the slave to the free States. The Government,
Senator Seward tells us, has advanced another stage. The Government
is no longer to intervene in favor of protection for our slaves.
We may be robbed of our property, and the General Government
will not intervene for our protection. When the Government gets
into the hands of the Republican party, the arm of the General
Government, we are told, will not be raised for the protection
of our slave property. Then intervention in favor of slavery
and slave States will no longer be tolerated. We may be invaded,
and the Black Republican Government will stand and permit our
soil to be violated and our people assailed and raise no arm
in our defense. The sovereignty of the State is no longer to
be a bar to encroachments upon our rights when the Government
gets into Black Republican hands. Then John Brown, and a thousand
John Browns, can invade us, and the Government will not protect
us. There will be no army, no navy, sent out to resist such
an invasion; but we will be left to the tender mercies of our
enemies. Has the South then no right to complain? Has the South
then no right to entertain apprehensions when we are told that
we are not to be protected in our property when the Republican
party shall get possession of the Government? You even declare
you will not defend the sovereignty of the States. Have we then
no right to announce upon this floor that if we are not to be
protected in our property and sovereignty, we are therefore
released from our allegiance, and will protect ourselves out
of the Union, if we cannot protect them in the Union? Have we
no right to allege that to secure our rights and protect our
honor we will dissever the ties that bind us together, even
if it rushes us into a sea of blood . . . .
that Senator said: "Free labor has at last apprehended
its rights, its interests, its powers, and its destiny and is
organizing itself to assume the Government of the Republic.
It will henceforth meet you boldly and resolutely here,"
That is on the floor of the Senate "in the Territories
or out of them, wherever you may go to extend slavery. It has
driven you back in California and Kansas; it will invade you
soon in Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, Missouri, and Texas."
"it will invade you soon in Delaware and Virginia."
Has it not already been done? Has it not invaded us with pike,
with spear, with rifles yes, with Sharpe's rifles? Have not
your murderers already come within the limits of our borders,
as announced by the traitor, Seward, that it would be done in
a short time. At the time of the speech Forties was in Washington,
and he says he communicated to Seward the fact that an invasion
would be made. We have been invaded; and that invasion, and
the facts connected with it, show Mr. Seward to be a traitor,
and deserving of the gallows. (Applause in the galleries.) Brown
had organized his constitution when that speech was made; Forties
was in the city of Washington then, and had a conversation with
Seward in reference to the invasion. Seward denies that Forties
told him anything about it; but he admits that he had a conversation
with Forties, and that Forties wanted money. Well, what was
that money wanted for? The Senator confesses he had a conversation
with Brown about that time. Forties says it was about the Virginia
invasion, and Seward announces in the Senate that Maryland and
Virginia would be invaded.
these facts not startling? And ought they not to awaken an apprehension
in the minds of southern men? Is it not time that we were armed?
But, more than that, gentlemen, he goes on to say: "That
invasion will be not merely harmless, but beneficent, if you
yield seasonably to its just and moderated demands."
is exactly what John Brown said. He said if we would allow him
to take our niggers off without making any fuss about it, he
would not kill anybody. (Laughter.) Brown said he did not mean
to kill anybody; Seward says, it is harmless and beneficent
to us if we yield to their just demands. But if we do not yield,
what then? Why, Brown said he would kill our people, butcher
our women and children. What does Seward say? "Whether
that consummation shall be allowed to take effect and with needful
and wise precautions against sudden change and disaster, or
be hurried on by violence, is all that remains for you (the
people of the South) to decide."
is the very language of John Brown. Whether we will allow them
to do it quietly or not, is the only question for the South
to decide. Virginia has decided it, and has hung the traitor
Brown; and may, if she can get a chance, hang the traitor Seward.
(Laughter.) We have repeatedly refused to yield, and you have
sought to force us to yield by violence, and Virginia has met
it with violence, and has hung the man; and Virginia has had
twenty five hundred men under arms, and has defied all your
efforts to rescue him.