Weston Arthur Goodspeed.

The province and the states, a history of the province of Louisiana under France and Spain, and of the territories and states of the United States formed therefrom (Volume 4) online

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branches accepted the report, and the bills went to President Mon-
roe, who signed (he Maine bill on March 3, iSjo, and the Mis-
souri bill on March 6. The d'homas i)rovis(j — that slavery be



excluded from all the region purchased from France in 1803
iiDrlh of latitude 36 de,i,n-ees aiul 30 minutes, save Missouri — was
the .Missouri compromise proper.

Another compromise had to he adopted, however, hefore Mis-
souri came in. IMissouri's state constitution which was framed
a few months after congress passed the enabling act of March
20, 1820, contained a provision making it the duty of the legis-
lature to pass laws preventing free negroes or mulattoes from
C(jming into the state. This provision caused an exciting con-
test in both branches of congress, and a deadlock ensued which
threatened to defeat the bill and leave Missouri in the territorial
stage for an indefinite time.

Plenry Clay then came forward with the first of his great
adjustments to maintain peace between tiie sections. Clay, who
had previously served several terms as speaker, wdiich post he
iiad resigned a few months previously, and who was by far the
most infiuential member of the house, projiosed, on January 29,
iSii, a special committee of thirteen, of whicji he was made
chairman by the speaker, John W. Taylor of New York. The
committee reported a resolution to admit Missouri on the funda-
mental condition that it should never i)ass any law preventing any
persons' settling in the state who were citizens of any state —
that is, that the discrimination in Missouri's constitution against
free negroes in Missouri should never be put into operation — but
the resolution was rejected on February 13. F.ut Clay was not
ilii^couraged at this reverse. ( )n b'ebruary 23, on his motion
aj^ain, a committee of twenl\ - tlirce members was appointed in the
hou.se, to which the senate added .seven member.s, and this body
made a report substantially similar io that of the first committee.
As the country by this time was tired of the struggle, and alarmed
at the possible consequences of failure, the house accepted the
report on February 26, and the senate did it two (.lays later. Mis-
souri, through its legislature, accepted congress' fundamental
condition, and, on Monroe's proclamation, it entered the Union
as a state on August 10, 182 1. This second compromise was
Clay's part in the Missouri admission adjustment.

In view of the South's subsequent ]:>osilion on the slavery ques-
tion in the territories, and the consecpiences to which it led, it
will be of interest here to mention two queries which IVesident
Monroe jnit to his cabinet just before he ])laced his signature on
the Missouri bill on March O, 1820. Those were: (1) Has C(jn-
gress the constitutional ])ower lo exclude slavery from a territory?
(2) Does the word "forever" in the 'Jdiomas amendment shutting

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jf. out slavery from all the Louisiana region north of 36 degrees and
'll 30 ininulos of latitude, except IMissouri, prohibit slaver}' in the
ii' states which may be founcl out of that locality, or does it apply
I to the territorial condition only?

I To the hrst of these t[ueries all the members of the cabinet,

f; including Calhoun, the secretary of war, answered in the aflirni-
\ ative. On the second query the secretary of state, John Ouincy
I Adams, declared that the "■forever" ai)plied to states as well as
^ territories, and the same view was atlvaiiced in 1854 in the house
,'- of representatives by Thomas II. rientun, in the contest which
I led to the repeal of the Missouri compromise. Calhoun, Craw-
I ford, the secretary of the treasury; and Wirt, the attorney gen-
\ eral, thought it ap[)lied to tlie territorial status of the locality
\ only, but when, on Calhoun's suggestion, the query was altered
\ to. Is the eighth section of the Missouri bill (the part which
; contaiuctl the whole compromise provision) constitutional? all the
|. cabinet took the aflirmative side.

I Calhoun changed his ground on these points in after years.

\ From 1847 ""^'1 liis death in 1850 he contended that neither
congress nor the legislature of a territory had the constitutional
power to shut out slavery from a territory, and that this power
could only be exercised by the people when framing their state
constitution, or afterward when they became a state. Chief
Justice Taney, in the Dred Scott case in 1857, sanctioned this
later Calhoun view, so far as an obiter dictum can give sanction
to anything. Douglas and his allies, stopping short of the
extreme ihisitiou taken by Calhoun in 1847 and afterward, con-
tended that congress had no right lo interfere with slavery in a
territory, but insisted that the iieople of a territory, through their
legislature, possessed this autlK)rity, and this was tlie grouml taken
in the Kansas-Nebraska act of 1S54 which repealed the Missouri
compromise of 1S20.

IMissouri was the eleventh state admitted since the foundation
of the government, and brought the entire number of states up to
twenty-four. It was the first state entirely west cf the Mis-
sissippi. No other state Avas let in until fifteen years after Mis-
souri's entrance, and the state then created, Arkansas, had formed
part of Missouri territory until a short time before Missouri was
advanced to the statehood dignity.

Among the Missouri adjustment's consequences were these:
It convinced the South that the salvation of slavery demanded a
strict construction of the constitutitjn, and that locality at once
abandoned the broad construction of that charter wdiich it ado];ted



during the war period of 1812-15; and afterward most of it
opposed protective tariffs, the United States Bank, internal im-
provements at the national expense, and the other assertions of
power which would strengthen the federal government at the
expense of the states. It made the new northwest free territory,
just as the old northwest had been made free by the ordinance of
1787, put off for a generation the inevitable conflict between free-
dom and slavery, and thus allowed the North and the West to
gain the strength which gave freedom the victory when the con-
flict came.



t 'n



The New State, Its People and Politics

UNDER tliL' authority of congress's enal)linj:,'^ act of March 20,
i8jo, delegates were elected in May of that year to a con-
vention vvhicli met in June in St. Louis, the territory's
capital, to frame a state ct)nslilution. Missouri's [population,
which was 20,845 i" 1810, was 06,557 '" 1820, JO,5()(; bein^
negroes, nearly all of whom were sla\-es. lis hve counties of
1810 had been expanded to fifteen— St. Louis, St. Charles, Ste.
Genevieve, Cape (iirardieu, Cooper, I'Vanklin, Howard, Jeffer-
son, Lincoln, Monti^oniery, Madison, New Madrid, Like, Wash-
ini.;lon and Wayne — in 1820. The population of St. Louis, Mis-
souri's lari^est town, in 1820 was 4.5(18. St. Louis county's dele-
gates to the conxenlion were l)a\id I'.arlon, Alexander McNair,
Pierre Chouteau, Jr., I'.ernartl I'ratte, Edward I'.ates, 'Idiomas E.
Riddick, AVilliam Rector and John C. Sullivan. The members
from the other counties who were then or later prominent in
Missouri's business or politics included John Scott, the territory's
delegate in Washington, who was sent there by the state for
three terms afterward ; Alexander Ihickner, Dull" Creen, Lenjamin
H. Reeves and Daniel Ilammoiid.

The convention met in the Mansion House, one of St. Louis'
best known hotels of that day, situated on the corner of Vine and
Third streets, forty-one delegates being present. David l')art()n
was made president of the convention and William G. Lettis
secretary. On June 12, 1820, the convention (jpened. On July
11), the constitution was signeit and the eonveiilion adjoiniied.
The constitution went into riTecl without sul)mission to the
people. It lasted till sui)erse<k'd by the Dr.d^e conslitulion of

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An election for state ulTieers, a le^islatnre, a rei)resentative in
coni^ress and other ofliciais was lieiil on August _'8. /Vlexaniler
McXair was elected .governor by (kS75 votes, as conipareil with
_',55() for ( ien. William Clark, who had been the territorial <^o\'-
eriior from 1813 initil the stale's adniissi(jn in 1821. William li.
A>hle)- was chosen lieutenant governor, and John Scott was
elected to congress witliout opposition.

Alexantler AlcNair was born in Penns) Ivania in 1774, removed
to St. Louis in 1804, held several minor i)olilical jjosIs during the
territorial days, was a merchant in that town at the time of his
ekclion as the lu'sl governor of the slate >d' .Missouri, served as
such until the end of his term in i8-'4, and died in St. Louis in

^■^-^^'- . 1349954

William IL Ashley, who was born in \ irguua m 1778 ami
came to .Si. Louis in i8(j_', was head ui the Kt)cky Mountain
I'ur Company, nrgaiii/ed in i8_'_', \\as elected to congress, serving
from 1S31 1.1 |S.:;7. and died in 183S.

John .Scott .served ten years as .Missouri's representative in the
knvei- branch of congress, fnur year.s during the territorial stage
and si.\ years in the state, retiring in 1827. lie was born in Vir-
ginia in 178J, graduated from I'rinceton college, removed to
Ste. Ciencvieve in 1S06, and dietl there in 1861.

Gen. William Clark, a younger brother of George Rogers Clark,
was born in Virginia in 1770, was a minor officer in the army
f<-»r a few >ears, resigning in i7iX>, after whicli lie removed to
St. Louis, whicli was his home from tliat time onward: was
Lewis' partner in the expk)ration of iSoj i)(), and aflei-war<l suc-
cessivel)' an Indian agent, a bri;^:idier general in command of
upper Louisiana, governor of i\lissouri Territory for eight \'ears
ending in 1821, and superintendent of Indian Affairs until his
death in St. I^ouis in 1S3S.

The general assembly, or legislature, consisting of fourteen
senators and fiirty-three rei)resentalives, met in the Missouri
lL)tel in St. Louis, on the corner of i\hiin and Morgan streets,
on September 19, 1820, and chose James Caldwell, of Ste. Gene-
vieve, .speaker of the lower chamber, Lieut. Gov. Ashley presiding
f)ver the up])er body. Governor McNair appointed antl the senate
confirmed Joshua Barton as secretary of state, Edward i>ates as
attorney general, Peter L. Didier as .state treasurer ; and William
Christie as auditor of public accounts.

'Idle most prominent of all of these was Ltlward Bates, Who
was born in \''irginia in 1793, removed to .St. Louis in 1804,
studied law with Rufus luiston, one (jf Missouri Territory's repre-

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seiitalivcs in congress, and was a niemljcr of the convention of
1820 which framed the state constitution. After a brief service
as state attorne}^ general he was in the legislature several times,
was a member of congress in 1827-29, was attorney general under
Lincoln in 1861-G4, and died in St. I.ouis in iSficj.

Among the work of the legislature at its first session was the
organization of the counties of Boone, Callaway, Chariton, Cole,
Gasconade, Lafayette, Perry, Ralls, Ray and Sabine; the choice
of a site for the state capital, which the constitution stipulated
should be on the Missouri within forty miles of the mouth of
the Osage; and which was established at St. Charles until 1826,
and then removed to its present location, which was named Jef-
ferson City in honor of the author of the Louisiana purchase ;
and the election of two United States senators. The last named
turned out to be by far the most difficult and exciting of its

David Barton, a Kentuckian by birth, long a resident of Mis-
souri, prominent and popular, who had presided over the con-
vention which framed the state constitution, and who was about
35 years of age at the time, was chosen unanimously as one of
the senators. Barton remained in the senate until 1 831, before
which time the state had turned against him on account of his
entrance into Adams' and Clay's National Republican i)arty,
which was one of the ingredients of the Whig party, organized
in 18^,4. He was subsequently defeated as a candidate for con-
gress, but was afterward elected to the legislature. In the last
years of his life his mind was clouded. He died near Boonville

The choice of the second senator led to a long and exciting
contest. There were "many candidates — John B. C. Lucas, who
had been land commissioner and chief justice under the territo-
rial government; John R. Jones, Henry Elliott and Thomas H.
Benton. Lucas was the m(jst prominent and popular of these.
Benton, who was born in North Carolina in 1782, removed to
Nashville in early manhood, where he was admitted to the bar;
was an officer under Jackson in the fighting against the Indians
during the war of 1812-15; and removed to St. Louis shortly
afterward, where he won rejjutation for liis legal knowledge
and el()(|nence. But I'enton, in a duel on Bloody Island, in the
Mississipi)i otT St. Louis, in 1817, had killed Charles Lucas,
IJniled .Slal(.s attorney, son of Judge Lucas, and had thus aroused
tiic hostility of the judge and of a large mmiber of persons in
St. Louis.



Benton, however, had some influential friends, including
Col. Auguste Chouteau, Laclede's principal suhordinate in found-
ing St. Louis ill 1764, and the first and one of the best known
of the great family of St. Louis Chouteaus ; Bernard Pratte,
George Sarpy, Sylvester Labadie and others, all of whom were
among the leading citizens of the place, and on their side Bar-
ton, the other senator, was enlisted. By their aid, and by car-
rying a sick member — Daniel Ralls, of Pike county, who died
a few days later — into the meeting room to answer to his name,
Benton won the election. Tn the drawing for seats, Benton got
the long term and I'arlon the short term. Benton served in the
senate until 1851, thirty years; became one of the great national
figures; was defeated for re-election to the senate in 1851 by
the pro-slavery section of his party ; was elected to the house
of representatives in 1852 as an oppcjnent of the extension of
slavery into the territories ; was defeated on the same sort of ticket
as candidate for guwrnor in iSsO, and died in 1858.

The contest in congress, however, over the anti-free negro
provi.sinn of Missouri's constitution, which is given in detail in
the preceding chapter, delayed her admission until August 10,
1821. Barton and Benton did not take tlieir seats until Decem-
ber of that year, more than twelve months after their election.

Missouri entered the I'liion willi her present l)onudarie.s except
ill t\v.) particulars. \\\ the "■ Platte purchase" of nS^o the triangle
ill the iiortliwesleni end of the state, coiiii)rising tlie i)resent
comities ot' .\(chison, .Andrew, iUichanan, Holt, Nodaway and
IMalle, w.is annexed. .\ dispute witli iow.i as to Missouri's
northern bouiuKiry, due to the vagueness of the' phraseoKigy of
llie act of congress of 1S20. threatened to lead to war between
the two connnunities, and the militia on each side of the line
was called out, but the matter was referred to the supreme court,
which decided in Iowa's favor, and an act of congress in 1848
laid out. the state's present northern line on the basis of this

A year after Missouri entered statehood her principal indus-
trial and commercial center, St. Louis, was incorporated by the
legislature, and on the first Monday of April, 1823, William Carr
Lane was ch(xsen the city's first mayor. Archibald Gamble,
James Kennerly, Thoiuas McKnight, James Lacknan, Philip
Rocheblave, James Lopez, William H. Savage, Robert Nash and
IL'ury Von Plnil were elected aldermen. St. I-ouis' population
at that time was 4,800.

ivspecial attention is called to tiie i)ers(;ns mentiiMied in this


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and the j)rccc(liii.q- chapters in connection with offices in the ter-
ritory the st.-ite .-uul the city of St. I.ouis, as well as those named
in connection with (he hankin,-' and other interests. Thev are
cited i)articnlai-l)- to show those \\h.) li-nivd couspicn.uisly in
the fomuhni;- of Missonri, and in starting;- it on its great career.
Many not yet named, however — the Gratiots, t)ie Cabannes, the
O'Fallons, the Carrs, the Snhlettes, tlie JhdcUes, the iMnllanphvs,
the Kennetts and the Geyers, RIannel i.isa, W ilson P. linnt, John
F. Darby, David Musick, Francis Cottarth llernard Berthold.
Andrew Henry, James llrid-er, Thomas Fitzpatrick, Joshna
Pik-her, JedecHali S. Smith, and Robert Camitbell— were active
in the devek)pment of JMissonri in its early days. Some of tliose
last mentioned were prominently connecte^l with the fur trade,
which was tlie largest single interest in St. Louis and Alis,souri
during the territorial days and in the state's early years, which
represents a business of over two hundred thou'sand dollars a
year even in the hrst two deea<les of the ninelonth century..

An earlier resident of the stale than any named tluis far except
the hrst of tln' Cdiouleaus,, and one or two others, and a more
distinguished personage than any other AIiss(jurian except Ben-
ton, is still to be mentioned. This is Daniel Boone, who moved
from Kentucky in 1795 into Missouri, then Spanish territory,
became a loyal subject of Charles iV. and Ferdinand VII., settled
in the hVmme ( )sage region, about fort\-fhe miles west of
St. Louis, in the St. Charles ilistrict, was a military and civil
officer under the Spanish regime, and gladly renewed his alle-
giance to the United Slates .mi the iransl'er of Lonisi;ma to this
countr\ m iSo;, 04. Thr oKl pioneer ilied in 1S20 at the resi-
dence of his son, iMajor Nathan Moone, on the I'emnie Osage
creek, in St. Charles county, but his body was disinterred and
taken to Frankfort, Ky., in 1845. Hooue's Lick, a local-
ity in the central part of the eastern section of the state in the
early days, I'.oonville and olhei; Missouri names commemf)rate
the old frontiersman and some of his descendants are among the
prominent Mis.sourians of today.

St. Ixniis' first city directt)ry, published in i8ji, shows that
the place was well provided with the resources and accompani-
ments of a high order of civilization on the eve of its advance-
ment in municipal dignity. According to that authcjrity, St.
Lcniis in i8j(, "besides the elegant Roman ( atliohe cathedral,
contains ten common stbools ; a brick ll.aptist ehureh . .
i)uiit in 1818; an l4)Lscopal ehureh oi wood; the Methodist con-
gregation hold their meetings in the (;1.1 Court House, and the

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Presbyterians in tlie Circuit Court room." It cites these as
ainonL;' the Inisiness interests c)f the town: "l-'Drty-six mercan-
tile Iiouses \\'hieh carr)- on an extensive trade with the most chs-
tant i)ai-ts of the re]>uhHc in merchandise, produce, furs and
|)ehry; . . . three weekly newspapers, viz., St. Louis
liKjuircr, Missouri Gacctfc (])roj;enitor of the present St. Louis
l^i'pitblic), anil St. Louis Register; and as many printing offi-
ces; one hook store; two binderies; three large inns, together
with a number of smaller taverns and boarding houses ; six liv-
ery stables ; fifty-seven grocers and bottlers ; twenty-seven attor-
nies ; thirteen physicians; three druggists," with a brewery, a
nail factory, a tanner}-, tliree soap and candle factories, two brick-
yards, and other sorts of business establishments. The directory
also said that the town, in its northern part, contained 154 brick
and stone dwelling houses and 196 of wood, and in the southern
l)art then' wrre 78 of brick and stone and 223 of wood, or 651
in all.

Idle }ear i8-'2, which saw the granting of a charter as a city
to St. I.ouis, witnessed the establishment there of the Western
Department of Astor's American Fur Company and the organi-
zation, in the same town, of the Rocky Mountain I'^ur Company,
under the direction of William IL Ashley and Andrew Henry.
TliL' (dd .Missouri Vur Compan\ , cslaldished by Manuel Lisa,
Andrew llenrv, Pierre Chouteau, Sr., Auguste Chouteau, Jr.,
Gen. William Cdark. Sylvester Labadie, I'ieVre Menard, William
IMorrison and Andrew IKnry, in }i>Oi), with a cajfital of forty
tlionsand dollars, had pas^^ed through several ri.'oij;aui/ations
before lSj_>, but it was still actively at woik under the direction
of Joshua I'ilcher, Manual Lisa having died in 1820.

But Ashley's Rocky Mountain I'^ir Compau)- had a larger cap-
ital than Lisa's concern, did more business, and had under its
direction a greater number of men then or subsequently con-
spicuous in the fur trade and other activities — James Bridger,
William L. Sublette, his broUier Milton G. Sublette, Robert
Campbell, Thomas Fitzpatrick, Jedediah S. Smith, David E.
Jackson, Samuel Tulloch, James P. Beck worth, Etienue Pro-
vost ancl many others — than were ever connected with any other
organization in this field.

Astor's American Fur Company, which was chartered in
New York in 1808, and which went into operation in 1810, had
a longer life than either the Missouri or the Rocky Mountain
companies, bad a greater amount of ca])ital than either, and, with
its successors, it monopolized most of the fur trade of the West

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from 1830 onward for n score of years, altlion<^Ii Aster liim-
self retired from it in ICS34, after lialt a century t)f labor as a
fiir trader. The estal)ii>lnuenl of the WeMern l)ei)artment of
Aslor's conijtany in St. Louis in 1822 put that town far aliead
of all rivals in that field, and it was the radiating center of the
fur trading- influence in the United States until 1864, when the
Northwest Fur Company, headed by J. V>. Mubbell, of St. Paul,
absorbed most of this trade for this country, and shifted the
head(juarters to that ])lace.

If the residents of the St. Louis of kSjj could have taken
n glance forward a few decades, they wouUl luu e been surprised
and gladdened at the favors which fortune was to lavish on
their city. They would have seen that, notwithstanding the
cholera of 1S32, the jianic of 1837 throughout the country, the
Mississippi Hood of 1844, the cholera visitation of 1848, the great
tire (.f i8|(j and llie war wf seci.ssi,)n, part of which took jdace
in thai city, .^t. Loni.s' |)opulation L;rew from (j.ooo in uS^o'to
l85,CXK) in i860, 311,000 in 1870, .and 575,238 in n;c)o, when it
was the fourth in rank of the country's cities. 'Jdn's great expan-
sion has been due chielly to the city's location close to the coun-
try's geographical center, and to the sagacit)-, energy and general
intelligence of its citizens.

The state of which St. I^ouis was the principal business and
social center was destined to double in population during sev-
eral successive decades, increasing from 60,000 in 1820 to
3,106,665 iu i()00, ailvancing from the twenty-second place among
twenty-two stales in 1821 to the fifth place among forty-live
states in recent years.

In politics Missouri has been Democratic, with an occasional
short intermission, from the beginning. When it entered the
Union in 1821, during Monroe's "era of good feeling," there was
technically only one party in the country, Washington's, Ham-
ilton's and Jay's Federalist party having passed off the stage a
few )ears previously. This was Jefl'erson's Republican party,

Online LibraryWeston Arthur GoodspeedThe province and the states, a history of the province of Louisiana under France and Spain, and of the territories and states of the United States formed therefrom (Volume 4) → online text (page 3 of 53)