Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Selections from the Letters and Speeches of the Hon. James H. Hammond, of South Carolina >> Speech on the Admission of Kansas, Under the Lecompton Constitution, Delivered in the Senate of the United States, March 4, 1858 >> Page 309

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Page 309

Speech | The Reprint Company; John F. Trow & Co. | 1866, 1978
Transcription 309
after year the majority in Kansas was beaten at the
polls ! They have always had a majority, but they al-
ways get beaten ! Ilow could that be ? It does seem,
from the most reliable sources of information, that they
have a majority, and have had a majority for some
time. Why has not this majority come forward and
taken possession of the government, and made a free-
State constitution and brought it here ? We should all
have voted for its admission cheerfully. There can be
but one reason : if they had brought, as was generally
supposed at the time the Kansas-Nebraska act was
passed would be the case, a free-State constitution here,
there would have been no difficulty among the north-
ern Democrats ; they would have been sustained by
their people. The statement made by some of them,
as I understood, that that act was a good free-State
act, would have been verified, and the northern Demo-
cratic party would have been sustained. But Kansas
coming here a slave State, it is hoped will kill that
party, and that is the reason they have refrained from
going to the polls ; that is the reason they have re-
frained from making it a free State when they had the
power. They intend to make it a free State as soon V
as they have effected their purpose of destroying
by it the Democratic party at the North, and now
their chief object here is, to agitate slavery. For
one, I am not disposed to discuss that question here
in any abstract form. I think the time has gone by
for that. Our minds are all made up. I may be
willing to discuss it and that is the way it should be
and must be discussed--as a practical thing, as a
thing that is, and is to be ; and to discuss its effect
upon our political institutions, and ascertain how long