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At the annual election in August, 1818, George Madison was elected Governor, and Gabriel Slaughter Lieutenant Governor of Kentucky. Madison took the official oath, but died in October, 1816, before he had entered on the duties of his office, which having devolved, under the constitution, on the Governor elect, Slaughter undertook the performance of them, and appointed John Pope Secretary of State. Mr. Pope, as a prominent politician, had become obnoxious to the prejudices of the dominant party, under the hanner of his former rival, Henry Clay. That party manifested general and violent dissatisfaction at the appointinent of Pope, who they feared would control the State administration and dispense its executive patronage. To get clear of him, some of his leading opponents proposed the election of a new Governor to fill the office during the resi. due of the term for which Madison had been elected; and that purpose engaged the attention and agitated the passions of the people of Kentucky with extraordinary fervor for more than a year.
At the first legislative session succeeding Madison's death, on the 27th day of January, 1817, Mr. J. Cabell Breckinridge, a member of the House of Representatives, submitted the following resolution:
“ Resolved, That the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky provide by law for electing a Governor to fill the vacancy occasioned by the death of our late Governor."
For that resolution, after elaborate discussion, in committee of the whole, the following was substituted:
“Resolved by the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kenlucky, That the present Lieutenant Governor is entitled to hold, by constitutional right, the office of Governor during the residue of the term for which bis late Excellency, George Madisun was elected, and that no provision can be made by law for holding an election to supply the vacancy."
On the 30th of January, 1817, the House adopted the substitute by the following vote:
Yeas--Messrs. Barret, Birney, Blackburn, Booker, Bowman, Caldwell, Carsor, Cook, Cotton, Cox, Cummins, Cunningham, Davidson, Davis, Dollerhide, Duncan, (of Lincoln) Elleston, Ewing. Ford, Gaither, Garrison, Gilmore, Given, Goode. Grant, Green, Grundy, Harrison, Hawkins, Helm, foleman, Hornbeck, H. Jones, Logan, Love, Marshall, Mercer, Mills, Moorman, Monroe, McConnell, McHatton, Me Mahan, McMillan, Reeves, Robertson, Rowan, Rudd, Shepherd, Slaughter, Spilman, S. Stevenson, Stapp, P. Stevenson, Todd, Green, Underwood, Ward, P. White, Weir, Wickliffe, Woods, and Yantis--63.
Nays--Messrs. Speaker, (J.J. Crittenden) Armstrong, Barbour. Breckinridge, Clark, Coleman, Dallam, Davenport, Duncan, (of Daviess,) Fleming, Gaines, Hart, Hickman, Hopson, Hunter, Jamison, Irvine, J. Jones, Lackey, Metcalfe, Owings, Parker. Rice, South, Trigg, Turner, Wall, and W. While--28.
On the same day the Senate concurred by the following vote:
Yeas--Messrs. Spe: ker, (Ed. Bullock; of Fayetie.) Bartlet, Bowmar, Chap. line, Churchill, Ewing, Faulkner, Griffin. J. Garrard, W. Garraid. Hillyer, Hardin, Jones, Lancaster, Mason, Owens, Perrin, Seiree, Sharp. Simrail, Smib, Thompson K. Taylor, Worthington, Wickliffe, Wood, Waide, 'Welch, and Wil. son--29. Nays---Messrs. Chambers, South, and Yancy-- 3.
To carry the question at the August election in 1817, the defeated party effected a thorough organization, brought out candidates in all the counties, and agitated the State as it had never been moved before. At that election the following persons were elected members of the House of Representatives:
Nathan Gaither and Cyrus Walker, of Adair; Anach Dawson, of Allen; Cave Johnson, of Boone; John Porter, of Butler; Thomas Fletcher, of Bath; Joseph R. Underwood and Hardin Davis, of Barren; William Jewell, of Bullitt; Edward R. Chew, of Breckinridge; Larkin Anderson, of Bracken; John L. Hickman, George W. Baylor, and Samuel G. Mitchell, of Bourbon; Jessee-Coffee, of Casey; Alfred Sanford, of Campbell; John Mercer, of Caldwell; William N. Lane and John Donaldson, of Christian; James Gholson, of Cumberland; John Bates, of Clay; Wm. Glenn, of Daviess; Stephen Trigg, of Estill; Joseph C. Breckinridge, John Parker, and Thomas T. Barr, of Fayette; Alexander Lackey, of Floyd; William P. Fleming and Michael Cassedy, of Fleming; Charles S. Todd and George M. Bibb, of Franklin; John Cunningham, of Grayson; Thompson Ward, of Greenup; Robert P. Letcher and James Spilman, of Garrard; Robert Barret and John Edmonson, of Green; William O. Butler, of Gallatin; Jaron Hart and Benjamin Shacklett, of Hardin; William K. Wall and John Givens, of Harrison; David White and Charles H. Allen, of Henry; Fortunatus F. Dulany, of Union and Henderson; Wm. R. Weir, of Hopkins; Richard Barbour and James Hunter, of Jefferson; William Walker, of Jessamine; Joseph Parsons, of Knox; Benjamin Duncan and Samuel Shackleford, of Lincoln; Boanerges Roberts and Presley N. O'Bannon, of Logan; Christopher Haynes, of Livingston; Thomas Marshall, of Lewis; John Adair and John B. Thompson, of Mercer; Samuel South, John Tribble, and Archibald Woods, of Madison; Duvall Payne and Walker Reed, of Mason; Moses Wickliffe, of Muhlenburg; Eli Shortridge and John Jamison, of Montgomery; John Rowan, Samuel T. Beall, and Henry Cotton, Nelson; Thomas Metcalfe, Nicholas; James Johnson, of Ohio; John Dollerbide and Joseph Porter, Pulaski; William Clark, of Pendleton; William Smith, of Rockcastle; John T. Johnson and Garrett Wall, of Scott; John Logan, George B. Knight, and Berryman P. Dupuy, of Shelby; Willis Field and William S. Hunter, of Woodford; Solomon P. Sharp and Cornelius Turner, of Warren; Walter Emmerson, of Wayne; Fleming Robinson, H. H. Bayne, and Richard Cocke, of Washington.
And the following members constituted the Senate of Kentucky:
Anthony Bartlett, of Henry county; Harman Bowmar, of Woodford; Jesse Bledsoe, of Bourbon; Wm. T. Barry, of Fayette; John L. Bridges, of Mercer; Samuel Churchill, of Jefferson and Bullitt; James Crutcher, of Hardin; Joseph Eve, of Knox and Clay; John raulkner, of Garrard; Dickson Given, Livingston and Caldwell; Thomas G. Harrison, of Washington; James Hillyer, Henderson, Ohio, and Daviess; John Griffin, Pulaski and Casey; Wm. IJardin, of Breckinridge, Grayson, and Butler; Francis Johnson, of Warren and Allen; Humphrey Jones, of Madison; James Mason, of Montgomery and Estill; Wm. Owens, of Green and Adair; James Parks, of Fleming and Nicholas; Josephus Perrin, of Harrison and Bracken; James Simrall, of Shelby; Ben. South, of Bath, Floyd, and Greenup; Richard Southgate, of Campbell, Pendleton, and Boone; Richard Taylor, of Franklin and Gallatin; Hubbard Taylor, of Clarke; David Thompson, of Scott; Joseph Welch, of Lincoln; Martin H. Wickliffe, of Nelson; Wm. Wood, of Cumberland and Wayne; Wm. Worthington, of Muhlenburg, Hopkins and Union; Joel Yancy, of Barren.
On the ed of December, 1817, upon the motion of Mr. Reed, a select committee, consisting of Messrs. Baylor, Bibb. Sharp, White, J. T. Johnson, Fletcher, Reed and Shortridge, was appointed to prepare a bill for a new election; on the 4th the committee reported a bill providing for an election of a Governor to supply the vacancy occasioned by Madison's death, and also for an election of a Lieutenant 13 )
Govermor for the same fractional term; which bill passed the house on the 15th of the same month by the following vote:
Yeas-Messrs. Speaker, (Breckinridge), Allen, Anderson, Barbour, Barr, Bay. lor, Bibb, Butler, Cassedy, Chew, Clark, Davis, Dawson, Donaldson, Dulany, W. Emmerson, Field, Fleming, Fletcher, Gholson, Givens, Glenn, Haynes, Hickman, Hopson, J. Hunter, W. S. Hunter, Jamison, C. Johnson, J. Johnson, Parsons, Patton, Payne, J. Porter, Reed, Roberts, Sanford, Sharp, Shortridge, South, Todd, Tribble, Trigg, Turner, W. Wall, G. Wall, Ward, White, and Weir--56.
Nays— Messrs. Adair, Barret, Bates, Bayne, Beall. Cocke, Coffee, Cotton, Cunningham, Duncan, J. Emmerson, Gaither, Hart, Jewell, Knight, Letcher, Marshall, Mercer, J. Porter, Robinson, Rowan, Shacklett, Shackelford, Spilman, Smith, Thompson, Underwood, C. Walker, Wickliffe, and Woods--30.
But, on the 18th of the same month, the Senate refused to order the bill to be read a second time, and thus defeated it by the following vote.
On the question, shall the bill be read a second time?-
Yeas-Messrs. Barry, Bledsoe, Bowmar, Chambers, Given, Johnson, Parks, Perrin, Şouth, Southgate, H. Taylor, Thompson, Wood, and Young--14.
Nays--Messrs. Speaker, (R. Ewing, ) Bridges, Crutcher, Eve, Faulkner, Griffin, Hardin, Harrison, Billyer, Jones, Owens, Simrall, R. Taylor, Welch, Wich-. liffe, Wilson, and Worthington--18,
When the canvass for 1817 began, it was believed that such a torrent of popu. lar sentiment for a new election had been gotten up as to leave scarcely a hope of arresting its progress or diverting its course. But the leading men who believed that the constitution would be violated and Slaughter's rights outraged by a new election, determined to resist it to the utmost. It became an all-absorbing topic, and no subject ever produced more intense or pervading excitement in Kentucky. At the request of some friends at Frankfort, Mr. Robertson, then just elected to Congress from the Garrard district, before he was 26 years old, wrote the following constitutional argument, signed “A Kentuckian." "Those friends, though it was written on the spur of the occasion, thought fit to publish it in a pamphlet, entitled, “ The Constilutionalist, by a Kentuckian,” and circulated it extensively through the State. It was, at the time, supposed to have had a very great influence on the public mind, and to have contributed, more than any other means, to that recoil in the popular sentiment which resulted in an abandonment of the project of a new election by act of assembly. A review of the scenes of that year would be interesting and rather profitable to all who desire to understand the history of Kentucky measures and men.