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No SLAVES IN VERMONT IN 1791. The official printed reports of the Census of the United States, from 1790 until 1870, assigned 16 slaves to Vermont in 1790, all in the county of Bennington ; but, in preparing the report of the Census of 1870, a critical examination of each previous Census was made, and one of the results was the discovery of the fact, that the persons charged to Vermont in 1790 as slaves were free blacks, and were so returned by the marshal of the State. This discovery was made by a Vermonter, GEO. D. HARRINGTON, Esq., Chief Clerk in the Census Bureau. It is strange that such an error should have passed uncorrected for eighty years, and the more strange when it is evident that the error was known in Vermont in 1791. The following, from the Vermont Gazette of Sept. 26 1791, is to the point :
The return of the marshal's assistant for the county of Bennington states, that there are in the county 2503 white males over sixteen years of age, and 2617 under that age. 5559 white females. 17 black males over and 4 under 16. 15 black females. Total of inhabitants, 12,254. To the honor of humanity NO SLAVES.
The foregoing agrees with the census report in the total number of population, and disagrees only in the classification of the blacks.
The reports of the census give the population of Vermont as of 1790, but the census of Vermont was not taken until 1791.
AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED
AMENDMENTS ADOPTED IN 1791.
The first Congress, Sept. 25 1789, proposed to the States twelve amendments to the Constitution of the United States, ten of which were ratified by the requisite number of States. These are the first ten amendments now attached to the Constitution. Two of the proposed articles failed. Vermont, however, ratified the whole, by an act passed Nov. 3 1791. The two articles rejected by other States were as follows:
Article the first. -- After the first enumeration required by the first Article of the Constitution, there shall be one Representative for every thirty thousand, until the number shall amount to one hundred, after which, the proportion shall be so regulated by Congress, that there shall not be less than one hundred Representatives, por less than one Representative for every forty thousand persons, until the number of Representatives shall amount to two hundred, after which the proportion shall be so regulated by Congress, that there shall not be less than two hundred Representatives, nor more than one Representative for every fifty thousand persons.
Article second.--No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of Representatives shall have intervened.-Hickey's Constitution, sixth edition, p. 33.
THE ELEVENTH AMENDMENT, ADOPTED JAN. 8 1798. From the Vermont Assembly Journal of Oct. 25 1793:
The Governor and Council appeared in the house, when his Excellency made the following communications, viz.
A circular letter from his Honor Samuel Adams, Esquire, Lieutenant Governor in and over the Commonwealth of Massachusetts,' dated October 9th, 1793-accompanied with
1 Acting Governor, Gov. Hancock having died on the day preceding the date of Mr. Adams's letter.
The Speech of his Excellency John Hancock, Esquire, late Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, to both branches of the Legislature of said Commonwealth, at their sessions begun and held at Boston, Sept. 18th, 1793, agreeably to his Excellency's proclamation-with the answers of the two branches of the Legislature-together with the following resolutions of the Legislature of Massachusetts, viz. “ COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS. IN SENATE, Sept. 231, 1793.
“Whereas a decision has been had in the Supreme Judicial Court of the United States, that a State may be sued in the said Court, by a citizen of another State; which decision appears to have been grounded on the second section of the third article in the constitution of the United States:
“ Resolved, That a power claimed, or that may be claimed, of compelling a State to be made defendant in any court of the United States, at the suit of an individual, is, in the opinion of this Legislature, unnecessary and inexpedient, and in its exercise, dangerous to the peace, safety, and independence of the several States, and repugnant to the first principles of a federal government.
" Therefore, Resolved, That the Senators from this State, in the Congress of the United States, be, and they are hereby instructed, and the Representatives requested, to adopt the most speedy and effectual measures in their power, to obtain such amendments in the constitution of the United States, as will remove any clause or article of said constitution, which can be construed to imply or justify a decision, that a State is compellable to answer in any suit, by an individual or individuals, in any court of the United States.-And his Excellency is hereby requested to communicate the foregoing resolves to the Supreme Executives of the several States, to be submitted to the consideration of their respective Legislatures. “ Sent down for concurrence.
SAMUEL PHILLIPS, President. “ In the House of Representatives, Sept. 27th, 1793. “ Read and concurred.
EDWARD H. ROBBINS, Speaker. By the Governor approved, Sept. 27th, 1793. John HANCOCK. “A true copy,
Attest, John AVERY, jun. Secretary."
Samuel Adams to Thomas Chittenden. The letter of Samuel Adams has been preserved in the Ms. Vermont State Papers, Vol. 24, p. 65, and is as follows:
(CIRCULAR.) COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS. Boston, October 9th 1793.
Sir,—The papers which I have the honor to inclose to your Excellency, contain the Speech of the late Governor,' & the proceedings of the Legislature of this Commonwealth, upon a principle of National Government, in which each State in the Union is equally interested.
A Mandatory precept of the Supreme Judicial Court of the United States, having been served by the Marshal of the District of Massachusetts, on his Excellency John Hancock Esq" late Governor, & James Sullivan Esq" the Attorney General of the Commonwealth, directing their appearance in that Court, to answer on the behalf of the Commonwealth, to a complaint filed by William Vassal, it became necessary to
1 For the speech of Gov. Hancock, see Ms. Vermont State Papers, Vol. 38, p. 114.
call the Legislature into Session: The Governor therefore, with the advice of the Council, convened the General Court.
The claim of a Judiciary Authority over a State possessed of Sovereignty, was of too much moment to be submitted to, without the most serious deliberation. The Legislature of this Commonwealth has treated the subject with an attention, commensurate to the importance of the power demanded; & as you will please to observe by their proceedings, have resolved, that it is unnecessary & inexpedient; & in its exercise dangerous to the peace, safety & independence of the several States, & repugnant to the first principles of a Federal Government.
The support of the Federal Government is an object of high importance in the mind of every true friend of the Union; but it is easily discerned, that the power claimed, if once established, will extirpate the federal principle, & procure a consolidation of all the Governments.
The resolutions of the Legislature made it the duty of the late Governor to communicate their proceedings on this subject, to the Governors of the several States; but the melancholly event of his death intervening, it becomes my duty, as Lieut. Governor of the Commonwealth, to make the Communication: And I do it with great cheerfulness, because my opinion fully accords with the determination of the Legislature, who have requested it.
As this is a question of so interesting a nature, & in which all the States are equally concerned, there seems to be a propriety in a free communication of their sentiments upon it : And it is hoped that, when the Legislature of the State, over which you have the honor to preside, shall be in Session, & contemplate the importance of the subject, this Commonwealth will find itself greatly supported by the Wisdom of their measures, & their salutary & candid advice.
I have the honor to be, sir, With great Respect & Esteem, Your Excellency's Very hble Servt.
SAM. ADAMS. His Excellency Thomas Chittenden Esq”.
In October 1792, Isaac Tichenor was requested by the Legislature to act for the State in the settlement of Ira Allen's accounts as State Treasurer and Surveyor General, Allen having proposed to enter a suit against the State in the U. S. Circuit Court for the District of Vermont. Oct. 20 1793, Tichenor by letter informed the Speaker of the House that, being unable to attend court, he had appointed Darius Chipman to take charge of the suit, “ who attended and prevented the entry of the action." ;
This was five days before Gov. Chittenden communicated the resolutions of Massachusetts ; and doubtless in consequence of this order of
1 Ms. Vt. State Papers, Vol. 24, p. 67. In the same, Vol. 38, p. 123, is Allen's writ declaring against the State for fifteen thousand dollars. The officer levied on the townships of “ Carthage and Woodbridge, so called," and described by the bounds of the present towns of Jay (Carthage] and Troy (Woodbridge). In the original charter of Woodbridge that township is bounded on the west by Alburgh, and that charter corered, in part at least, the New Hampshire grant of Highgate.
It is evident, therefore, that, after the original charter of Woodbridge had been abandoned, Allen transferred the name of “ Woodbridge” to the township now known as Troy.
the court, no action was had by the legislature, and the matter passed over to the next session with other unfinished business. In the meantime, on the 2d of January 1794, a resolution was submitted in the U.S. Senate, proposing for adoption the eleventh amendment to the constitution ; and on the 14th of the same month, the Senate adopted the resolution by a vote of 23 to 2. The Senators from Massachusetts and Vermont voted for the resolution, Messrs. Gallatin of Pennsylvania and Rutherford of New Jersey alone voting against it. The resolution was concurred in by the House. At the October session, 1794, the amendment was ratified by Vermont;' and Jan. 8 1798, it was declared by the President, in a message to the two Houses of Congress, to have been adopted by the Legislatures of three fourths of the States.
PROPOSED AMENDMENT IN 1798, ON THE ELIGIBILITY OF CERTAIN
STATE OF VERMONT. IN GENERAL ASSEMBLY, Oct. 12, 1798. The Speaker then laid before the house the communication from the Governor of the commonwealth of Massachusetts, alluded to in his Excellency's speech, which is in the words following, to wit.
“ COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS. Boston, July 12th, 1798. “ Sir,-The two branches of the Legislature of this Commonwealth, have thought it highly necessary that some constitutional barrier should be opposed, to the introduction of foreign influence into our National Councils; and have requested me to trausmit the enclosed resolutions to the supreme executive of the several states in the union, that the same may be submitted to the consideration of their respective Legislatures, in order that the constitution of the United States may be so amended as to effect more fully, the great objects for which it was designed.
“ The legislature of this Commonwealth, strongly impressed with the necessity of the measure, have thought it expedient to take this preparatory step, and it is hoped, when the Legislature of the state over which you have the honor to preside, shall be in session, and contemplate the importance of the subject, this commonwealth will find itself greatly supported, by a concurrence in the measure.—To their wisdom it is submitted.
“ I must take the liberty of requesting your Excellency, to inform me of the determination of the Legislature of your state upon the subject, as soon as it shall be known.
“ I have the honor to be, With the highest respect, Your Excellency's very humble servant,
INCREASE SUMNER. “ His Excellency Governor Tichenor.” “ COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS,
· IN HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, June 28th, '98. “Whereas it is highly expedient, that every constitutional barrier should be opposed, to the introduction of foreign influence, into our na
1 Benton's Abridgement of Debates in Congress. Vol. I, pp. 445, 446. * Printed Assembly Journal, 1794, p. 179. 8 See Appendix J, Governor's speech of 1798.