Back to top

Lincoln-Douglas Debates (Boyer, 1995)

Textbook

Paul Boyer, Todd & Curti’s: The American Nation (Austin: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, 1995), 353.

In the debate at Freeport, Illinois, Lincoln challenged Douglas to explain how popular sovereignty - the method the Kansas-Nebraska Act had used to settle the slavery issue in the new territories - was still workable in the wake of Dred Scott. Douglas replied that the people of a territory could still prohibit slavery simply by refusing to pass the local laws necessary to make a slave system work: 'It matters not what ways the Supreme Court may...decide...The people have the lawful means to introduce [slavery] or exclude it as they please, for the reason that slavery cannot exist...unless it is supported by local police negotiators.'
How to Cite This Page: "Lincoln-Douglas Debates (Boyer, 1995)," House Divided: The Civil War Research Engine at Dickinson College, http://hd.housedivided.dickinson.edu/node/17038.