Charleston (SC) Mercury, "The Lecompton Constitution Rejected," August 9, 1858

    Source citation
    "The Lecompton Constitution Rejected," Charleston (SC) Mercury, August 9, 1858, p. 2.
    Newspaper: Publication
    Charleston Mercury
    Newspaper: Headline
    The Lecompton Constitution Rejected
    Newspaper: Page(s)
    Date Certainty
    Sayo Ayodele, Dickinson College
    Transcription date
    The following text is presented here in complete form, as it originally appeared in print. Spelling and typographical errors have been preserved as in the original.

    The Lecompton Constitution Rejected.

    It appears now to be certain that the Lecompton Constitution,  together with the Land Ordinance, is rejected by the people of Kansas at the polls held last Monday. We suppose the controversy, whether the Lecompton Constitution was or was not submitted by the Conference Bill to the vote of the people of Kansas, will now end. It could not be rejected if it was not submitted. It is rejected and dead, but the agitation which it has occasioned is not dead with it. A new issue arises from its ashes – shall Kansas be admitted as a free State at the approaching Congress, despite the provisions of the Conference Act? It will now be taken up at the North and become the leading subject of popular agitation. We cannot doubt the result before the people of the North. With such men as the Hon. THOMAS CURWIN, now a leader of the Black Republican party in Ohio, DOUGLAS in in Illinois, and FORNEY in Pennsylvania, we look for nothing abort of a pretty unanimous determination from that section of the Union, to be shown by the coming elections, to force Kansas into the Union with a free State Constitution at the approaching session of Congress. But what will the Democratic party from the North in Congress, which supported the Conference Bill, do? What will the Admistration – what will the South do, in the approaching session of Congress. Will the Democratic party stand true to its pledges, and will the South sternly insist on their fulfillment? or will they both give way, and defeat and surrender be again the policy of the South? The time was when to ask such questions would have been considered to be as slanderous as it was insulting. But that time is passed for the South. That high spirit which actuated our fathers to fight through  a revolution for an abstract principle, we fear is gone. We have fallen into a policy of expediencies, and to submit to spoliation and aggression is the part of a vaunted patriotism. Although experience has shown us that by every concession we have weakened the Democratic party, strengthened Abolitionism, and ripened sectionalism at the North – although the plainest dictates of reason show, it appears to us, that this must be the case from the nature of things – yet to yield our rights is still this sagacious policy of a vast portion of the people of the South. The Union does not deter the Northern people from aggressing upon us, but it deters us from resisting them; it does not stay the fiend of Abolition from seeking to seize the Government to overthrow the institution of slavery, but deters us from seeking to break from their hostile fraternity. It is their mighty instrument for sectional agitation, and aggression, and conquest; yet we look to it as worthy of our highest affection, and essential to our safety.

    Many have jus proclaimed, after a feverish agitation of five months in Congress, that a halcyon peace is brooding over us! The Kansas issue is ended! The South is triumphant! All hail! let us go to sleep! when lo! The hydra-head of abolition springs up anew. Kansas is rejected from the Union – the South is defeated – and with an anti-slavery constitution Kansas is to be forced into the Union, despite the provisions of the Conference Act. Darkly the Presidential election looms up before us shrouded in clouds and tempests. With the Democratic party now divided in Illinois and almost all the Northern States where it makes any contest – with probably a still greater division at the next session of Congress, when the South shall insist upon the fulfillment of its faith in the Compromise Act – what hope can there be of an issue in the Presidential election favorable to the Democratic party or the South? Will not Black Republicanism be installed in power in Washington, by the next Presidential election; and thus that consummation take place which, throughout the South, has heretofore been regarded with great unanimity as the funeral knell of the Union?

    For our part we have, for some time past, looked to the mastery of the General Government by the abolitionists to be just as sure to take place as any other event morally certain in the course of human affairs. The whole history of the country for the last twenty or thirty years points to this result as inevitable in the usual course of things. The South could, ere the battle was fought and won, have broken up the deadly sequence of effect from cause which was rolling over her destinies; but she has failed to interpose for her protection, and now no mortal efforts within the Union, in our judgment, can arrest the triumph of abolitionism in seizing the government. It may be propitiated and postponed, as the man pursued by wolves arrested their attacks by the swing one child after another out of his carriage – but the wolves overtook and devoured him at last.

    How to Cite This Page: "Charleston (SC) Mercury, "The Lecompton Constitution Rejected," August 9, 1858," House Divided: The Civil War Research Engine at Dickinson College,