PROPOSED AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES, WITH REASONS WHY THEY SHOULD BE ADOPTED. Curtius, pseud.

PROPOSED AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES, WITH REASONS WHY THEY SHOULD BE ADOPTED.

[np: 1861]. Broadside, 11" x 17." Printed in three columns. Signed in type at the end, 'Curtius.' Untrimmed at the outer margin, with several small holes at its blank extremity. A vertical fold split expertly repaired but costing several letters. Lightly foxed, Good+.

A rare, evidently unrecorded broadside, "written," says the author, a man of the Border States, "before the adoption of the provisional constitution of the Southern Confederacy" in February 1861. Hoping to avert "the coercion of States by arms," Curtius offers several constitutional amendments which will "thoroughly eradicate the causes of discontent" that now rend the Union. Curtius's amendments prohibit the international importation of slaves into any State; permit migration of slaves from one State or Territory into another, "except by authority of the States, each within its own jurisdiction"; authorize Congress to pass any legislation necessary for the effectuation of these amendments; and prohibit their repeal except by the States' unanimous vote. He argues that slavery would thus disperse itself out of the Nation over time: "Leave slavery to the operation of natural laws, to God and the States, and in due time He through them will work out its end as He thinketh meet."
Curtius was unlikely to draw anti-slavery support: Congress had already prohibited the international importation of slaves in 1808; most slave-owners and slave-sellers, as well as abolitionists, had no interest in reviving the international slave trade. And the elimination of slavery through dispersion was a pipe dream that no sensible person would credit.
Not located on OCLC [as of May 2019], or online catalogues of AAS, Huntington, NYPL, Newberry, Harvard, Yale, U CA, Columbia, U TX, U MI. Not in Sabin, Nevins, Bartlett, Eberstadt, Parrish & Willingham, Crandall. Item #26246

Price: $2,500.00

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