Read The Abolition of Slavery: The Right of the Government Under the War Power by William Lloyd Garrison Online


William Lloyd Garrison (1805-1879) was a prominent United States abolitionist, journalist, and social reformer. He is best known as the editor of the radical abolitionist newspaper, The Liberator, and as one of the founders of the American Anti-Slavery Society....

Title : The Abolition of Slavery: The Right of the Government Under the War Power
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ISBN : 9781406547399
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 48 Pages
Status : Available For Download
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The Abolition of Slavery: The Right of the Government Under the War Power Reviews

  • Sarah Crawford
    2019-01-20 12:37

    William Lloyd Garrison, 1842.The first part is from John Quincy Adams.'I believe that, so long as the slave States are able to sustain their institutions without going abroad or calling upon other parts of the Union to aid them or act on the subject, so long I will consent never to interfere. I have said this, and I repeat it; but if they come to the free States, and say to them, you must help us to keep down our slaves, you must aid us in an insurrection and a civil war, then I say that with that call comes a full and plenary power to this House and to the Senate over the whole subject.'(In other words, he seems to be saying the South can do what it wants with its slaves as long as it doesn't directly involve the North. If they try to involve the North, then the matter becomes a national one and slavery everywhere could be ended.)'I do not admit that there is, even among the peace powers of Congress, no such authority; but in war, there are many ways by which Congress not only have the authority, but ARE BOUND TO INTERFERE WITH THE INSTITUTION OF SLAVERY IN THE STATES'(Congress has more power to act during a war than in peacetime.)J.R. Giddings is the next person quoted. He refers to 'A synopsis of these doctrines was given by Major General Gaines, at New Orleans, in 1838.''General Jessup had captured many fugitive slaves and Indians in Florida, and had ordered them to be sent west of the Mississippi. At New Orleans, they were claimed by the owners, under legal process; but Gen. Gaines, commanding that military district, refused to deliver them to the sheriff, and appeared in court, stating his own defence.He declared that these people (men, women and children) were captured in wars and held as prisoners of war: that as commander of that military department or district, he held them subject only to the order of the National Executive: that he could recognize no other power in time of war, or by the laws of war, as authorized to take prisoners from his possession. He asserted that, in time of war, all slaves were belligerents as much as their masters. The slave men, said he, cultivate the earth and supply provisions. The women cook the food, nurse the wounded and sick, and contribute to the maintenance of the war, often more than the same number of males. The slave children equally contribute whatever they are able to the support of the war. Indeed, he well supported General Butler's declaration, that slaves are contraband of war.The military officer, said he, can enter into no judicial examination of the claim of one man to the bone and muscle of another as property. Nor could he, as a military officer, know what the laws of Florida were while engaged in maintaining the Federal Government by force of arms. In such case, he could only be guided by the laws of war; and whatever may be the laws of any State, they must yield to the safety of the Federal Government. This defence of General Gaines may be found in House Document No. 225, of the Second Session of the 25th Congress. He sent the slaves West, where they became free.'(Some people were anti-slavery and took it upon themselves to do what they could to help the slaves.)'In December, 1814, General Jackson impressed a large number of slaves at and near New Orleans, and kept them at work erecting defences, behind which his troops won such glory on the 8th of January, 1815. The masters remonstrated. Jackson disregarded their remonstrances, and kept the slaves at work until many of them were killed by the enemy's shots; yet his action was approved by Mr. Madison and Cabinet, and by Congress, which has ever refused to pay the masters for their losses.'(Apparently Andrew Jackson, in the War of 1812, took slaves from their 'masters' and used them for military purposes.)The writer goes on to make the argument that, during a war, slaves can be considered as helping the enemy, and can therefore be taken away from their 'owners', given their freedom and sent elsewhere, and this can all be done in a totally legal fashion under war powers acts.The next part of the work is something that makes no sense at all to the work overall; it's a section about piracy.The next writer is someone named O.A. Brownson. He writes about the slaves in the border states and how they might need to be freed.The New York Herald is next.'With the secession of Virginia, there is going to be enacted on the banks of the Potomac one of the most terrible conflicts the world has ever witnessed; and Virginia, with all her social systems, will be doomed, and swept away.--New York Herald, April 19.We must also admonish the people of Maryland that we of the North have the common right of way through their State to our National Capital. But let her join the revolutionists, and her substance will be devoured by our Northern legions as by an Arabian cloud of locusts, and her slave population will disappear in a single campaign.'Then there are several more sections, none of them extremely interesting, and one final section from a Southern viewpoint.