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Crittenden Compromise

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Crittenden compromise was the last effort taken to resolve secession by southern states in the civil wars of 1860-61. this was a political negotiation, that was authored by senator John Crittenden of Kentucky. Senator john was attempting to resolve the contentious issues that had made the southern states to contemplate secession. The Crittenden compromise give a clear picture of the politicians at the time and how they thought the crisis would be managed. The compromise was offered on 18th December 1860, consisting of six proposed amendments to the constitution and four other proposed resolutions to be enacted by congress. The amendments articles as summarized were presented as follows:

Article 1 of Crittenden compromise

all the territories of united states north of 36 degrees 30 minutes then and those to be acquired later on were prohibited from slave holding. The souther territories to the latitude, slave holding was accepted and allowed. All states in the united states, those that had seceded and others, were free to join back into the federal union on equal footing with others as long as their population and legislations permitted.

Article 2 of Crittenden compromise

abolition of slavery in states that recognized and accepted slave-holding, congress shall have no power to interfere with them

Article 3 of Crittenden compromise

the power to abolish slavery in the state of Columbian by congress to be limited as long as the state neighbors states of Maryland and Virginia where slave holding is recognized and accepted. Congress will not interfere with federal officers or members of congress from slave holding states who may bring them into Columbia district while on official duties until they return back with them

Article 4 of Crittenden compromise

congress shall have no power to interfere with transportation of slave across states that slavery was accepted and recognized, whether transportation is by road, river or sea.

Article 5 of Crittenden compromise

in the case of arresting a fugitive slave, congress has the power to claim damages caused by slaveholder or his agents in the process of arresting th fugitive from the county the incident may take place. The slave holder will have the right to be compensated for the loss of his slave in such instances and the government will claim and recover the same from the county such incidents may take place.

Article 6 of Crittenden compromise

no constitution amendment thereafter will give congress any power to interfere with slave holding and the first five amendments proposed

The other four Crittenden compromise legislation that were to be enacted by congress on the basis of its power over slave holding rights are as follows:

  • The laws on recovery of fugitive slave were to be followed strictly both by congress and individual slave holder
  • All other laws in all states that go against the fugitive slave act of congress are null and void. These laws were deemed to be the ones causing the problem of some sates wanting to seceding.
  • An amendment to the 18th September 1850 fugitive slave law to make the fee of the commissioner equal in amount in cases he may decide , in order to avoid misinterpretation of the power bestowed upon them.
  • Suppression of further importation of African slave into united states should be enhanced forthwith and laws to that effect be thoroughly executed. Any other legislative enactment to that effect be made promptly

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