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York [Mr. MORGAN], or my friend farther from me, the Senator from Pennsylvania [Mr. COWAN]. I merely open these points, without undertaking to decide them, but simply as an unanswerable argument in favor of the reference.
Afterwards, in reply to Mr. Foster, of Connecticut, Mr. Sumner
SUPPOSE it was matter of public notoriety that I came into this Chamber with a certificate from a body of men in Boston, little more in number and character than the Common Council of that city, not in fact supposed to represent the State; suppose this fact much received in the country; then I submit to the Senator whether it would not be the duty of the Senate, before receiving my credentials, to inquire into their origin.
The debate continued, when Mr. Sherman, of Ohio, moved that the credentials lie on the table. The motion was adopted, — Yeas 29, Nays 13. Mr. Segar's claim to a seat was never prosecuted.
REPUDIATION OF THE REBEL DEBT.
CONCURRENT RESOLUTION IN THE SENATE, FEBRuary 17, 1865.
FEBRUARY 17th, Mr. Sumner introduced the following concurrent resolution, and asked its immediate consideration.
HEREAS certain persons have put in circulation the report, that, on the suppression of the Rebellion, the Rebel debt or loan may be recognized in whole or in part by the United States; and
Whereas such a report is calculated to give a false value to such Rebel debt or loan: Therefore,
Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), That Congress hereby declares that the Rebel debt or loan is simply an agency of the Rebellion, which the United States can never, under any circumstances, recognize in any part or in any way.
Mr. Saulsbury and Mr. McDougall objecting, its consideration was postponed. In the evening of the same day the resolution was taken up, on motion of Mr. Sumner, and adopted without a division.
March 3d, the resolution was concurred in by the House of Representatives without a division.
This resolution was a direct answer to a pretension set up in Eng
NO BUST FOR AUTHOR OF DRED SCOTT
SPEECH IN THE SENATE, ON A BILL PROVIDING FOR A BUST OF THE LATE CHIEF JUSTICE TANEY, FEBRUARY 23, 1865.
FEBRUARY 23d, Mr. Trumbull moved to proceed with the consideration of a bill from the House of Representatives requiring the Joint Committee of the two Houses on the Library to contract with a suitable artist for the execution in marble, and delivery in the Supreme Court Room of the United States, in the Capitol, of a bust of the late Chief Justice Taney, and appropriating one thousand dollars for this purpose. On the question of taking it up, Mr. Sumner said: "I object. An emancipated country should not make a bust of the author of the Dred Scott decision." The motion to take up prevailed, when Mr. Sumner said:
R. PRESIDENT, - I objected to this joint reso
lution, when it was reported by the Senator from Illinois [Mr. TRUMBULL], and he was disposed to hurry it upon the Senate, to the exclusion of important business. I objected to it again to-day; but it was from no indisposition to discuss it.
I know well the trivial apology which may be made for this proposition, and the Senator from Maryland [Mr. JOHNSON] has already shown something of the hardihood with which it may be defended. In the performance of public duty I am indifferent to both.
The apology is too obvious. "Nothing but good of the dead." This is a familiar saying, which, to a cer
tain extent, is acknowledged. But it is entirely inapplicable, when statues and busts are proposed in honor of the dead. Then, at least, truth must prevail.
If a man has done evil during life, he must not be complimented in marble. And if indiscreetly it is proposed to decree this signal honor, then the evil he has done must be exposed; nor shall any false delicacy seal my lips. It is not enough that he held high place, that he enjoyed worldly honors, or was endowed with intellectual gifts.
"Who wickedly is wise, or madly brave,
Is but the more a fool, the more a knave."
What is the office of Chief Justice, if it has been used to betray Human Rights? The crime is great according to the position of the criminal.
If asked, Sir, to mention the incident of our history, previous to the Rebellion, most worthy of condemnation, most calculated to cause the blush of shame, and most deadly in its consequences, I do not doubt that you would name the Dred Scott decision, and especially the unhallowed assertion of the Chief Justice. I say this with pain. I do not seek this debate. But when a proposition is made to honor the author of this enormity with a commemorative bust, at the expense of the country, I am obliged to speak plainly.
I am not aware that the English judges who decided contrary to Liberty in the case of ship-money, sustaining the king in those pretensions which ended in Civil War, have ever been commemorated in marble. I am not aware that Jeffreys, Chief Justice and Chancellor of England, famous for talents as for crimes, has found any niche in Westminster Hall. No, Sir. They have been left to the judgment of history; and there I insist
that Taney shall be left in sympathetic companionship. Each was the tool of unjust power. But the power Taney served was none other than that Slave Power which has involved the country in hideous war.
I speak what cannot be denied, when I declare that the opinion of the Chief Justice in the case of Dred Scott was more thoroughly abominable than anything of the kind in the history of courts. Then and there judicial baseness reached its lowest point. You have not forgotten that terrible decision, where an unrighteous judgment was sustained by falsification of history. Of course the Constitution of the United States and every principle of Liberty were falsified; but historical truth was falsified also. I have here the authentic report of the case, where it appears that the Chief Justice, while enforcing his unjust conclusion, blasting a whole race, used the following language.
"It is difficult at this day to realize the state of public opinion in relation to that unfortunate race, which prevailed in the civilized and enlightened portions of the world at the time of the Declaration of Independence, and when the Constitution of the United States was framed and adopted. But the public history of every European nation displays it in a manner too plain to be mistaken.
"They had for more than a century before been regarded as beings of an inferior order, and altogether unfit to associate with the white race, either in social or political relations, and so far inferior, that they had no rights which the white man was bound to respect, and that the negro might justly and lawfully be reduced to slavery for his benefit. bought and sold, and treated as an ordinary article of merchandise and traffic, whenever a profit could be made by it. This opinion was at that time fixed and universal in the civil