Page images
PDF
EPUB

Having disposed of several cases urged as being here to reside temporarily may bring with them parallel with this, in which the slaves had been and take away their slaves; and the sixth sectica returned to their owners, the Judge proceeded to contains the following provisions : examine the laws of nations on the subject of the ". Any person not being an inhabitant of this transmission of property from one State or terri- State, who shall be travelling to or from, or pass tory into another. These laws, as presented by the ing through this State, may bring with him any best writers, did not acknowledge so complete and person lawfully held by him in slavery, and may arbitrary a possession in slaves as in inanimate ob- take such person with him from this State ; be jects of use or merchandise.

the person so held in slavery shall not reside er The Judge considered how the local law of New- continue in this State more than nine months; York affected this case.

and if such residence be continued beyond that “To go back first to the right of transit with time, such person shall be free.' slaves, as it is claimed to exist by the natural “Such was and had always been the law of law: It appears to be settled in the law of nations, this State, down to the year 1841. The Legislathat a right to transit with property not only ex- ture of that year passed an act amending the ists, but that, where such right grows out of a Revised Statutes, in the following words, viz: necessity created by the vis major, it is a perfect The third, fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh see right, and cannot be lawfully refused to a stranger. tions of title 7, chapter 20, of the first part of the (Vattel, B. 2, ch. 9, s. 123. Ib., Preliminaries, Revised Statutes, are hereby repealed. s. 17. Puffendorf, B. 3, ch. 3, s. 9.) In this case, " The sixth section of the Revised Statutes, and it is insisted that the respondent came here with that alone, contained an exception which would his slaves from necessity, the return being so have saved the slaves of the respondent from the stated, and the demurrer admitting that state operation of the first section. The Legislature, bs ment. It is perfectly true that the demurrer ad repealing that section, and leaving the first in full mits whatever is well pleaded in the return. But if force, have, as regards the rights of these people the return intended to state a necessity created by and of their master, made them absolutely free; the vis major, it has pleaded it badly; for it only and that not merely by the legal effect of the re alleges a necessity, without saying what kind of pealing statute, but by the clear and deliberate necessity; and, as it does not allege a necessity intention of the Legislature. It is impossible to created by the vis major, the demurrer has not make this more clear than it is by the mere lasadmitted any such necessity. Where the right guage and evident objects of the two acts of transit does not spring from the vis major, the “It was, however, insisted on the argument same writers agree that it may be lawfully re- that the words 'imported, introduced, or brought fused. (Ib.)

into this State,' in the first section of the Revised " But, however this may be, it is well settled Statutes, meant only introduced or brought' for in this country, and, so far as I know, has not the purpose of remaining here. So they did, w heretofore been disputed, that a State may right- doubtedly, when the Revised Statutes were passed, fully pass laws, if it chooses to do so, forbidding for an express exception followed in the sixib the entrance or bringing of slaves into its territory. section, giving that meaning to the first And This is so beld even by each of the three cases when the Legislature afterward repealed the sixth upon which the respondent's counsel relies. (Com section, they entirely removed that meaning, learmonwealth vs. Ayres, 18 Pick. R. 221. Willard ing the first section, and intending to leave it, to vs. the People, 4 Scammon's Rep., 471. Case of mean what its own explicit and unreserved and Sewall's Slaves, 3 Am. Jurist, 404.)

unqualified language imports. “ The laws of the State of New-York upon this "Not thinking myself called upon to treat this subject appear to me to be entirely free from any case as a casuist or legislator, I have endeavored uncertainty. In my opinion they not only do not simply to discharge my duty as a Judge, in interuphold or legalize a property in slaves within the preting and applying the laws as I find them. limits of the State, but they render it impossible Did not the law seem to me so clear, I might feel that such property should exist within those lim- greater regret that I have been obliged to dispose its, except in the single instance of fugitives from so hastily of a case involving such important conlabor under the Constitution of the United States. sequences.

“ The Revised Statutes (vol. I. 656, 1st. Ed.) My judgment is that the eight colored persons re-enacting the law of 1817, provide that ‘No mentioned in the writ be discharged." person held as a slave shall be imported, introduced, or brought into this State, on any pretense POLONEL Benton's PROGRAME— Sach whatever, except in the cases hereinafter specified.

Mr. Benton's late speech at Jackson, Every such person shall be free. Every person

[graphic]

re find it reported." Mr. Beaton has held as a slave who hath been introduced or

d an eclectic system litics, and brought into this State contrary to the laws in

instance he has

a creed force at the time, shall be free.' 'S. 1.

uence and for "The cases excepted by this section are provided

ir government for in the six succeeding sections. The second sec

eat measures

tha tion excepts fugitives under the Constitution of the

he, however,

to United States; the third, fourth and fifth sections

fare throws except certain slavas belonging to immigrants

he yearly

the who may continu held as apprentices; the

ministration seventh section hat families coming

ne of

y that repro

mocratic majorities were in both houses of out, some snags pulled out. Yet, no sooner is an ngress when that appalling sum was voted.” appropriation for them proposed, than they are Mr. Benton condemns the Collins appropriation, clogged with the company of most unequal comd letsin a good deal of light upon the corrup- panions. Obscure streams canoe-paddling creeks ns practised at Washington. Turning from the -coon-hunting branches--mere streaks of water ste of the public money, to what, in common in a corner, their names unknown to the general th himself, we regard as a legitimate use of it map-are brought forward in juxtaposition, desays:

mand the same national countenance, and embar. | Quitting this distant view, and coming nearer go the appropriation unless they are included. me, and looking into our own wants and inter- Unity in the West would put an end to this inters, the first great want that we feel is that of a ference. It would say to these infantile streams, estern spirit in our public men—the want of Stand back! wait till you have grown as big as rsonal devotion, unity of feeling, and concert of the Mississippi, or at least as big as the smallest ion, in relation to Western interests. The Great of his tributaries! and then come forward with est, like a huge and helpless hulk tugged by your pretensions to equality. An equal among ittle steamer, dangles at the tail of Eastern equals is what is wanted-a peer among peers !bjects, no matter how wild! neglecting her and we cannot be damped ourselves for the sake n, no matter how legitimate. How mortifying of saving you. The united voice of the West sce this mighty Valley become an appurtenance, would give authority to that answer, and save our

an obsequious follower in deplorable Eastern legitimate river appropriations from the incumhemesocean steam lines, for example—instead brance of small companions on one hand, and the giving a lead, and commanding a support for danger of a Presidential veto on the other.” rown great measures. We have such measures; Mr. Benton is justly severe on National Conven

nature has pointed them out with an unerring tions; advocates the choice of Presidents by the od and an imperious voice-marked them out people, and disclaims all selfishness or ambition on th a clearness which admits of no mistake, and his own part in the following words: th a precision which tolerates no oversight. “For myself, I feel the gravity and responsibilHere are our great rivers, to us so many arms ity of my position. Time and events give admo the sea; and on which we have a right to safe nitions which cannot be disregarded-time, which well as to free navigation. They are kingly hurries us along to that 'bourne from which no ers, requiring each a greater extent in which to traveller returns ;' and events which thin the ranks fold its enormous length than European king of our contemporaries, and leave solitude where ms present; and the smallest of which would associates stood. Four times in the short space of dain a comparison with that majestic Po wbich two years (to go no further back) I have seen the rgil saluted as Rex Fluviorum. Rising on a departure of some one of those with whom I st circumference, collecting in the centre, drain- have long been associated, often matched in fierce $ an area as large as the Roman world in the political contest, never in malice or envy Calbe of the Cæsars, connecting with the seas by houn, Woodbury, Clay, Webster, have all gone !

heads and the mouths, interlocking with At- leaving voids where they stood, and the reflex of a atic and Pacific streams, and uniting the waters light which shines through the world, and will be the torrid Mexican Gulf and the frigid Hudson's seen by after ages to the latest posterity. In the y; they constitute a system of navigation presence of such impressive events and on the lose aggregate is thrice the breadth of the Atlan- verge of such a time, I can have no feelings but ocean; and of which steam power is the de those of good-will to the departed, good wishes lopment, and railways the supplement. These for the living, solicitude for the national honor and ers, though the noblest on earth in a state of prosperity, and an anxious desire to save for my. ture, yet need some help from the band of man. self the good opinion, valuable beyond all prico hey need improvements which the National with which my countrymen have honored me." pvernment alone can give-some rocks blown

:

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

UUSIC.

hundred performers, and will be led by Carl Ed

ert, under whose direction the principal German In our review of the musical season of New. Festivals have been conducted. To afford the re York, during the last two months, we have had oc- quired accommodation, the orchestral portion casion to mention with more than usual prominence, the Hall will be entirely remodelled, on the plan the names of M'mes Sontag and Alboni, who have of Exeter Hall, London, forming a spacious saindeed so entirely filled the popular ear that other phitheatre occupying one third of Metropoiter

, artists have produced but little sensation. We Hall

, and greatly facilitating the acoustic effects have waited till the present month before express the music. ing any opinion as to the comparative merits of To be present at one of these concerts will richi these two famous singers, not because we contem- repay the expenses of a trip to New-York fra plated receiving any bias in our own decision from any reasonable distance; and those of our readers the judgment of the public, but because we deem who have travelled hundreds of miles to be such comparisons unfair until time and place have Jenny Lind, may well repeat the journey to attes. fully tested the excellence of rival artists. It was a concert of Madame Sontag. easy from the first to predict a much larger measure -AT NIBlo's, Madam Anna Bishop, sp of success for Madame Sontag than for her younger ported by an excellent company, is giving a series ci competiter, but it would not have been in the operas in English. Martha, the most celebrated power of anyone to say that the latter would bave composition of Fiotow, a German master, of whom, neglected the accessories of her concerts as she has in this country, we have as yet beard little, was the done, and would have suffered the sight of declin- first of the series, and enjoyed a very successful ing audiences without taking measures to remedy run. The plot of the opera is very slender and the evils that occasioned them.

amusing, while the music is of every shade-some Notwithstanding the advice of her friends, and times as light as the lightest comicalities of Auber, the constant strictures of the Press, Madame Al- and sometimes so sombre as to remind us of Mozart boni bas neither enlarged her orchestra, nor made and Bellini. The comic parts of the composition, any alteration in her troupe. Her orchestra is an however, very much overbalance the serious fragindifferent one, and she knows it. Signor Rovere ments which it contains, and evening after evening, is absolutely distastful to most bearers, and she as the audience have shown their evident prefer cannot be ignorant of so very manifest a fact.ence for fun, the comedy bas been more broadly With a better basso, Sangiovanni, who is a meri- developed, and its accompanying gravities pushed torious and modest artist, would appear to much into the background. The tragic muse, we venture better advantage than he does; and in fact bis to say, never took up her abode at Niblo's powers are well nigh thrown away in his present This opera of Flotow's deserves to be inade a company. But we do not like to enlarge on this classic; and if a few of its faults can be got rid of. subject, since the truth of what we have said is it will be. The Last Rose of Summer is a very perfectly apparent to those of our readers who pleasing and well-known air no doubt, but this is have attended Madame Alboni's concerts, and the no reason why it should be introduced into a public too are sufficiently aware of it.

musical composition so as to stamp its character Madame Sontag has displayed greater sagacity on the entire work. An appropriated melody, She has gone on from good to better. Like a skil especially, should be but sparingly introduced ful merchant, she has, with increasing success, in. But in Martha,” the “ Last "Rose of Summerois creased her expenditures. Since her third appear- made a great “ point." It opens an act. The ance there literally has not been a spare seat at heroine sings it to her lover; and here, let us say, any of her conterts. In Philadelphia and Boston it is not at all inappropriate. It appears in nearly her prices were higher than in New York, and every scene, sometimes in scraps, and sometimes even at these rates were largely resold by specula- in all its fair proportions. The curtain falls while tors. Her course thus far has been one continued the entire tableau of characters are chanting its success. This has been accomplished mainly by melodies. We submit that this is giving us entirely her own merits, but much is also due to the tact too much of a good thing. People can see too and sagacity with which her concerts have been much even of an old and popular acquaintance. managed.

We will not enlarge upon the occasional inconMadame Sontag has even better things in store sistencies of the plot, because these are of less cofor us. She repays the favors of the public with sequence. The opera contains so much good music usury. Her last series of concerts will commence that we hope our managers will hereafter include at Metropolitan Hall about the 25th of November, it among their stock pieces. and will exceed in richness and effect any thing Madam Bishop's company have an engagement yet witnessed in America. Preparations and re- of some weeks' duration at Niblo's, and we have hearsals have been

procreding during the last six l heen glad to see a succession of full houses. weeks, to give to th orts that character

-MR. WM. HENRY Fey, formerly the prograndeur and com which the Trien

of the Astor Place Opera House, will comMusical Festivals

Germany ar

series of lectures on music, at Metropolijustly famed; and

ion of the mas

on the 1st of December. He will illuspieces to be produ

erality of all

theories and conceptions by the aid of s arrangements, they

a in the music

estra and chorus. His project has been annals of America

s will be divi

e in contemplation, and the present ed into classical,

nd choral cor

favorable season for its accomplishcerts, in which

en secondar ts, will be

ent artists of

for Mr. Fry's entire course of ten

[graphic]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »