Monday, March 14, 2011

The Adjourned Union Meeting

The Marietta Republican, January 18, 1861

A brief abstract of the proceedings of this meeting may be found in another column.  The resolutions do not come up to the expectations of many of the friends of the Union, but they were the best that could be passed through the meeting, at the time the vote was taken.  Some members of the committee reluctantly consented to have two or three of them reported to the meeting, with the hope that by harmony and concession something might be done which would have a good effect in the alarming crisis now upon us.  It was with the hope that the people of this section were willing to concede what the Union men of the border slave States declare is the least that will keep their States with us, that several amendments were offered in the meeting.

Wm. Scott, Esq., moved to substitute the following for the 6th resolution:
Resolved.  That the mere election of Abraham Lincoln in a constitutional manner is not a sufficient cause for dissolution.

The same gentleman moved to substitute the Crittenden compromise for the 7th resolution.

Capt. Geo. Bennedict moved to add the following to the 7th resolution, but withdrew it, to allow Mr. Putnam to make amendment:
Or, We are willing to accept the proposition of creating them into States, as proposed by Mr. Sherman of Ohio, or, as equitable division of the Territories, substantially on the basis proposed by the committee of Congressmen from the Border States.

Douglas Putnam, Esq., moved to add the following to the 7th resolution, as a substitute for Capt. Benedict's amendment:
Or, such constitutional amendments, within the purview of the Border State Propositions, as may become necessary, in the last extremity, to preserve the peace & the Union.

These were voted down by the more radical anti-slavery men, after being supported in brief speeches by Judge Nye, Capt. Benedict, Wm. Scott, Esq., Judge Buell, and others, and opposed by Judge Green.

After the adoption of the series of resolutions, A. W. McCormick offered the following:
Resolved, That, if the territories be divided on the line of the Missouri Compromise, , the provision should be incorporated into the Constitution.

This is desired by those who wish to have the question removed from the halls of Congress, and finally settled and the agitation terminated.  This, too, was voted down, by the same parties who killed the other resolutions.  If the meeting had not been adjourned on Tuesday night, and had a vote been then taken when the Court House was filled with the masses really anxious to settle the question, and restore peace, the result we are confident, would have been quite different.

As the meeting had been twice adjourned many had gone home, and could not or did not care to be present.  We are well satisfied that a very large majority of our citizens are decidedly in favor of accepting the Border State compromise, referred to in the resolutions of Capt. Benedict and Douglas Putnam, Esq.  The propositions can be found on our first page, accompanied by the comments of leading papers of all parties.

We think all should accept them - whether they are just their views or not - as about the only thing which will induce a single Southern State to remain in the Union.  Those who prefer disunion, and all the horrors of civil war - no very pleasant thing for us on the border to contemplate - will of course oppose this plan of settlement.  But we hope there is yet good sense and patriotism enough in this people to rise above petty jealousies and party dogmas, and save our government - acknowledged to be the best on the face of the globe.

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