Letter to John C. Calhoun, 2 January 1844

  • Source Note
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of a glorious nation;— but remember, a “Sovereign State”! is so much more powerful than the , the parent government, that it can exile you at pleasure, Mob you with impunity; Confiscate your lands and property: have the Legislature Sanction it: yea, even Murder you, as an edict of an Emperor, and it does no wrong. for the Noble Senator of South Carolina, says, the power of the Federal Govenment, is so limited and specific, that it has no Jurisdiction of the Case! What think ye of Imperium in imperio
Ye Spirits of the blessed of all ages, Hark! Ye shades of departed Statesmen, listen! Abraham, Moses, Homer, Socrates, Solon, Solomon, and all that ever thought of right and wrong, look down from your exaltations, if you have any, for it is said in the midst of Counsellors there is safety, and when you have learned that fifteen thousand innocent Citizens, after having purchased their Lands of the and paid for them, were expelled from a “Sovereign ” by order of the , at the point of the Bayonet:— their arms taken from them by the same authority: and their right of Migration into said , denied under pain of imprisonment, Whipping, Robbing, Mobbing, and even Death and no Justice or recompence allowed: and from the Legislature, with the at the head, down to the , with a Bottle of Whiskey in one hand and a bowie knife in the other, hear them all declare that there is no Justice for a Mormon in that , and Judge ye a righteous Judgment, and tell me when the virtue of the States was stolen; where the honor of the General Government lies hid; and what Clothes a Senator with Wisdom? Oh nullifying Carolina! Oh little tempestuous Rhode Island! would it not be well for the great Men of the Nation to read the fable of the Partial Judge. And when part of the free Citizens of a State had been expelled contrary to the Constitution, Mobbed, Robbed, Plundered and many murdered, instead of searching into the course taken with Joanna Southcott, Ann Lee, the French Prophets, the Quakers of New England, and Rebellious Niggers in the Slave States, to hear both sides and then judge, rather than to have the mortification to say, “Oh it is my bull “that has killed your Ox— that alters the case? I must enquire into it. And if, and if?”
If the General Government has no power, to re-instate expelled citizens to their rights, there is a monstrous hypocrite fed and fostered from the hard earnings of the people!— A real “Bull Beggar” upheld by Sycophants; and altho’ you may wink to the Priests to stigmatize; wheedle the drunkards to swear, and raise the hue and cry of Imposter, False Prophet, God dam old Joe Smith, yet remember, if the Latter Day Saints are not restored to all their rights, and paid for all their lossses according to the known rules of Justice and Judgment, reciprocation and common honesty among men, that God will come out of his hiding place and vex this nation with a sore vexation— yea, the consuming wrath of an offended God shall smoke through the nation, with as much distress and woe, as Independence has blazed through with pleasure and delight. Where is the Strength of Government? Where is the Patriotism of a Washington, a Warren, and Adams? and where is a spark from the Watch fire of ’76, by which one candle might be lit that would glimmer upon the confines of democracy? Well may it be said that one man is not a State; nor one State the nation. In the days of General [Andrew] Jackson, when refused the first instalment for spoliations, there was power, force, and honor enough to resent [p. [2]]
of a glorious nation;— but remember, a “Sovereign State”! is so much more powerful than the , the parent government, that it can exile you at pleasure, Mob you with impunity; Confiscate your lands and property: have the Legislature Sanction it: yea, even Murder you, as an edict of an Emperor, and it does no wrong. for the Noble Senator of South Carolina, says, the power of the Federal Govenment, is so limited and specific, that it has no Jurisdiction of the Case! What think ye of Imperium in imperio
Ye Spirits of the blessed of all ages, Hark! Ye shades of departed Statesmen, listen! Abraham, Moses, Homer, Socrates, Solon, Solomon, and all that ever thought of right and wrong, look down from your exaltations, if you have any, for it is said in the midst of Counsellors there is safety, and when you have learned that fifteen thousand innocent Citizens, after having purchased their Lands of the and paid for them, were expelled from a “Sovereign ” by order of the , at the point of the Bayonet:— their arms taken from them by the same authority: and their right of Migration into said , denied under pain of imprisonment, Whipping, Robbing, Mobbing, and even Death and no Justice or recompence allowed: and from the Legislature, with the at the head, down to the , with a Bottle of Whiskey in one hand and a bowie knife in the other, hear them all declare that there is no Justice for a Mormon in that , and Judge ye a righteous Judgment, and tell me when the virtue of the States was stolen; where the honor of the General Government lies hid; and what Clothes a Senator with Wisdom? Oh nullifying Carolina! Oh little tempestuous Rhode Island! would it not be well for the great Men of the Nation to read the fable of the Partial Judge. And when part of the free Citizens of a State had been expelled contrary to the Constitution, Mobbed, Robbed, Plundered and many murdered, instead of searching into the course taken with Joanna Southcott, Ann Lee, the French Prophets, the Quakers of New England, and Rebellious Niggers in the Slave States, to hear both sides and then judge, rather than to have the mortification to say, “Oh it is my bull “that has killed your Ox— that alters the case? I must enquire into it. And if, and if?”
If the General Government has no power, to re-instate expelled citizens to their rights, there is a monstrous hypocrite fed and fostered from the hard earnings of the people!— A real “Bull Beggar” upheld by Sycophants; and altho’ you may wink to the Priests to stigmatize; wheedle the drunkards to swear, and raise the hue and cry of Imposter, False Prophet, God dam old Joe Smith, yet remember, if the Latter Day Saints are not restored to all their rights, and paid for all their lossses according to the known rules of Justice and Judgment, reciprocation and common honesty among men, that God will come out of his hiding place and vex this nation with a sore vexation— yea, the consuming wrath of an offended God shall smoke through the nation, with as much distress and woe, as Independence has blazed through with pleasure and delight. Where is the Strength of Government? Where is the Patriotism of a Washington, a Warren, and Adams? and where is a spark from the Watch fire of ’76, by which one candle might be lit that would glimmer upon the confines of democracy? Well may it be said that one man is not a State; nor one State the nation. In the days of General [Andrew] Jackson, when refused the first instalment for spoliations, there was power, force, and honor enough to resent [p. [2]]
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