clear space clear space clear space white space
 r c h i v e s   o f   M a r y l a n d   O n l i n e

PLEASE NOTE: The searchable text below was computer generated and may contain typographical errors. Numerical typos are particularly troubling. Click “View pdf” to see the original document.

  Maryland State Archives | Index | Help | Search
search for:
clear space
white space
Proceedings and Debates of the 1864 Constitutional Convention
Volume 102, Volume 1, Debates 313   View pdf image (33K)
 Jump to  
clear space clear space clear space white space
recommend the reading of the third chapter
of Story's Commentaries, to gentlemen
who are unenlightened as lo the views of that
learned jurist upon the question of National
and State sovereignty, and if that does not
enlighten them, then all I shall say will be—
"Ephraim is joined to his idols; let him
Mr. BERRY, of Prince George's. To what
school of politics did Sneary belong?
Mr. SANDS. Well, the fact is, I know
more about Chief Justice Taney's polities
than I do about Justice Story's. [Laughter.]
In 1832, those men who planted the seeds
of this heresy, ran mad over it then, and
away down in a mighty South Carolina they
passed an ordinance of nullification, and
Mr. Clay, in this speech, referred to an in-
stance related by an eye witness. At a meet-
ing held in Charleston, shortly after the or-
dinance of nullification was passed, one of
the speakers declared that if no other State
joined them in, South Carolina would draw her
sword unaided—at that point, some poor,
demented individual in the crowd was so
can led away by his enthusiasm that he cried
out—" Yes, and if South Carolina does not
do it, I will." [Laughter.]
Mr. CLARKE. That is reliable?
Mr. SANDS. That is reliable, I suppose.
In 1832 the little great State of South Caro-
lina sent on to Maryland her ordinance of
nullification, the practical result of this doc-
trine of States' rights, and asked Governor
Howard to lay it before the Legislature of
Maryland, and asked that body to co-operate
with her in it. Governor Howard said
that under the circumstances he felt himself
bound, from mere respect to the State of
South Carolina, to submit the ordinance to
the Legislature of Maryland, but he did so
with this language accompanying it :
"Upon the subject of disunion, I would
speak in still stronger language. Such a
topic a few years back would have been received
everywhere with execration."
There may be some gentleman here—I do
not undertake to say that there is—but there
may be some gentleman here who was at that
time present in this hall when this document
was read. If so, then he will remember that
the Governor used no mincing language
about it: language which, as I said before, I
would not choose to utter here myself, on ac-
count of older members present. This is the
language of Governor Howard :
"Such a topic a few years back would have
been received everywhere with execration; it
is here still considered as sacrilege, a sever-
ance of the union of soul and body."
And I commend this now to the considera-
tion of gentlemen as the winding up:
"And only to be thought of by desperate
men, or unfortunate maniacs." (Applause.)
Mr. BERRY, of Prince George's. Was that
State sovereignty, or nullification?
Mr. SANDS. State sovereignty.
Mr. CLARKE. Gentle-men will remember
that I quoted from that myself last winter,
and commented upon it.
Mr. SANDS. Well, I will read it over
again, it is so good, (laughter), and so fully
expresses my views.
"Such a topic a few years back, would
have been received everywhere with execration
; it is here still considered as sacrilege,
a severance of the union of soul and body,
and only to be thought of by desperate men
or unfortunate maniacs."
Such were Governor Howard's opinions of
the South Carolina school of politics.
Now in reference to what the gentleman
from Prince George's (Mr. Clarke) styles the
binding of poor Maryland liana and foot,
and laying her down, like a lamb before the
butcher, or a sheep before the shearer, I want
gentlemen to understand that that is not my
style. I have as good a right to the title of
Marylander as any man who sits upon this
floor. My grandfathers, on both sides, were
soldiers of Washington, and their bones now
lie buried in Maryland soil. And many
bound to me by ties of blood, brothers and
sisters, now sleep in Maryland soil. I love
her glorious old memory, I know her worth,
and I would have her, as she ought to be, a
bright star in the glorious galaxy of States
revolving around that great sun, our central
government. (Applause.) That is the posi-
tion which I desire for Maryland; not bound,
not humiliated; but exalted, bright, beauti-
ful. And she can only be that by acting in
harmony with the laws of her being. Sup-
pose some planet in your solar system should
proclaim and assert its independent sover-
eignty and rush out of its own proper
sphere; where would it go? To darkness
and ruin. And the same law that holds
good in physic's, holds good in morals, in
ethics, in politics. Let Maryland act up to
the full measure of her State sovereignty,
but let her properly obey the paramount au-
thority of the Government of the United
States, the central arm of our political sys-
tem. Let her do that, and you will have her
moving forward in harmony, and peace, and
glory, and happiness in her proper sphere.
It is my duty to apologize to the Conven-
tion tor detaining them so long. Still, in
justice to myself, and to the people I repre-
sent, I could say no less. I would say to my
friend from Prince George's (Mr. Clarke)—
and I say it in no disrespect to him—1 never
intend to follow him through the line of ar-
gument that he pursued yesterday. I would
just as soon think of wading the Dismal
Mr. CLARKE. I think you could do the one
as well as the other.
Mr. SANDS. I have no doubt of it, for the
gentleman left no clue behind him to guide
me. In either case I should be wandering in

clear space
clear space
white space

Please view image to verify text. To report an error, please contact us.
Proceedings and Debates of the 1864 Constitutional Convention
Volume 102, Volume 1, Debates 313   View pdf image (33K)
 Jump to  

This web site is presented for reference purposes under the doctrine of fair use. When this material is used, in whole or in part, proper citation and credit must be attributed to the Maryland State Archives. PLEASE NOTE: The site may contain material from other sources which may be under copyright. Rights assessment, and full originating source citation, is the responsibility of the user.

Tell Us What You Think About the Maryland State Archives Website!

An Archives of Maryland electronic publication.
For information contact

©Copyright  October 06, 2023
Maryland State Archives