Free Missouri: Part Ii

THE Missouri Legislature sat in the rude village of Jefferson. One day a street fight was going on in front of the Governor’s house, and his Excellency stepped up to the combatants to separate them and command the peace. But Martin Palmer, a brawny Representative, who stood watching the conflict, thought the Chief Magistrate was taking one side ; so he threw off his coat, and sprang forward with doubled fists, shouting : Hold up, Governor ! When it comes to a squar’ fight, you ’re no bigger nor any other man. If you mix in yer, I reckon I ’ll take a small hand myself! ”

That was characteristic of the backwoodsman. He was rough, but his sense of fair play was very strong — on every subject except one. For now', after a fierce two years’ struggle, Missouri had been admitted,—the twentythird State of the American Union. Of her seventy thousand inhabitants eleven thousand were slaves. The long contest ending in the Compromise had fanned the hottest flames of partisanship. Missouri deliberately saddled herself with the political Old Man of the Sea. She adopted a Constitution which forbade the abolition of slavery, and prohibited free negroes from “coming into and settling in this State, under any pretext whatever.”

This seed of barbarism bore fruit after its kind. In 1835, in the streets of St. Louis, two white men suspected — only suspected — of decoying away slaves into Illinois received nearly two hundred lashes. They were administered by wealthy and leading citizens, who had first decided, by a vote of only fortytwo to twenty, to whip the offenders instead of hanging them. The same year, more leading citizens of the utmost “ respectability” warned Elijah P. Lovejoy, a young clergyman, from Maine, that the public temper would not permit him to continue his temperate discussions of slavery through his religious weekly, “The St. Louis Observer.” But young Lovejoy’s blood was up, and he stood on his rights as an American citizen.

Twelve months later a mulatto desperado fatally stabbed one officer who was taking him to prison, and severely wounded another. A mob tore him from jail; burned him alive, and left his charred corpse chained to a tree, with boys throwing stones at it; and a St. Louis judge, who bore the appropriate name of Lawless, charged the grandjury that this horrible outrage, being the involuntary act of a frenzied multitude, was beyond the jurisdiction of human law. Was it here the eminent New England divine learned his theory that slavery is an “ organic sin ” which involves no individual responsibility ?

Lovejoy’s comments on this atrocious doctrine provoked another “ frenzied” mob to tear down his printingoffice. He removed his newspaper to Alton ; but neighboring Illinois, too, — settled largely from Missouri, — was ruled by the devilish spirit of slavery. Twice his establishment was destroyed by Alton mobs, and twice he replaced it. The municipal authorities sympathized with the rioters. Prudent friends expostulated with Lovejoy. His editorials had been very moderate and courteous ; but in this hour of danger he was immovable. In a public meeting, modestly, calmly, inflexibly he proclaimed his determination, living or dying, to vindicate the constitutional guaranty that freedom of speech and of the press shall in no wise be abridged. Once only, when he alluded to his sick wife and helpless children, his voice broke; and there were few dry eyes in the hall. And yet, in free Illinois, there was no public sentiment to sustain such a man ! Finally his third printing-press arrived. A handful of friends banded with him to defend it. At midnight, an armed attack was made ; one of the rioters was killed by the party on guard, and then, with the mayor of the city looking on, in sight of his own home, and while protecting his own property, Elijah Lovejoy was shot dead. He fell in his thirty-fifth year. His was the first blood shed in our great struggle. Freedom has had few abler champions, no nobler martyr. A monument to his memory is now rising at Alton.

The murder stirred the hot indignation of a young New York journalist, then unknown to fame. He wrote : —

“We dare not trust ourselves to speak of this shocking affair in the language which our indignation would dictate. It forms one of the foulest blots on the pages of American history. .... Every single participant, however passive, in this execrable attempt to prevent by violence the expression of a freeman’s opinions, is, in the eye of God and of justice, a murderous felon, and his hands are reeking with the blood of a martyr to the cause of liberty of speech and of the press. .... We loathe and abhor the miserable cant of those that talk of Mr. Lovejoy as guilty of resisting public opinion ! Public opinion, forsooth ! .... To talk of resisting what is called public opinion, as a crime, is to make Socrates an anarchist and Jesus Christ a felon. . . . . This tragedy, if its effects be not thus counteracted, is calculated to give a fearful impetus to the cause of abolition. It will immediately add thousands to the unwelcome petitions with which the halls of Congress are now crowded. We ask the South, then, to come forward, and declare that she asks nobody in other States to enter upon an unsolicited defence of her peculiar institutions, by means of burglary, robbery, arson, and murder.”

These extracts are from the “ NewYorker.” They were Horace Greeley’s first public words even of indirect sympathy for the antislavery cause. And their closing appeal to the South was made in entire sincerity.

Boston itself was in the mobbing, but not in the murdering line. The venerable William Ellery Channing called a meeting in Faneuil Hall to consider the outrage ; but the respectability of the city had not yet determined whether it was an outrage. Dr. Channing read a temperate, well-considered address. Then James T. Austin, Attorney-General of the Commonwealth, arose in the gallery, opposed any public action, insisted that Lovejoy had died as the fool dieth, and poured forth a flood of invective upon the antislavery agitators, appealing to prejudice against color, and the baser passions. After he ceased, and before the storm of stamping, clapping, and hissing had died away, a young lawyer, slender, erect, and graceful, sprang upon the platform. His father had been the first mayor of Boston. He himself had won some distinction at Harvard as a debater; but he had no popular fame, and was not known by sight to a hundred men in the audience. When the tumult subsided, his clear, silvery tones rang through the old hall; —

“Mr. President, I wonder that this floor does not open, and the earth yawn under our feet, to swallow up the recreant son of Massachusetts who has just taken his seat ! ”

The style has become so familiar during thirty intervening years, that we instinctively recognize it as an old friend. Need the reader be told that this was the first bugle-call of Wendell Phillips to the American people ?

As time passed on, the St. Louis cruelties were repeated in remoter districts. At Springfield, in Southwestern Missouri, I once saw a half-witted negro taken from prison, and hanged by a mob, for an outrage upon a lady. Probably a white man would have met the same fate for the same crime. But I heard members of the crowd propose collecting all the negroes of the vicinity, and burning them on the public square ; and a citizen told me that he had seen two slaves burned at the stake in the neighboring county of Jasper for a like offence, aggravated by the murder of their victims.

Now the Great Conflict was at hand, Missouri remembers its preliminary skirmish, all of which she saw, and a part of which she was. The admission of Texas, and the passage of the Fugitive Slave Law, had left smouldering embers ; the Kansas-Nebraska Bill, opening to slavery a region which has since been divided into five great States and Territories, fanned them into a consuming flame. The North was in a blaze. Three thousand clergymen of New England joined in one protest against it. The “ Tribune ” urged upon Northern members of Congress resistance to the last. It said: “Better that confusion should ensue, — better that discord should reign in the national councils, — better that Congress should break up in wild disorder,— nay, better that the Capitol itself should blaze by the torch of the incendiary, or fall and bury all its inmates beneath its crumbling ruins, — than that this perfidy and wrong should be finally accomplished. . . . . Should success attend the movement, it is tantamount to a civil revolution, and an open declaration of war between freedom and slavery on the North American Continent, to be ceaselessly waged till one or the other party finally and absolutely triumphs.”

Prophetic words ! And from his place in the Senate, on the eve of its passage, Mr. Seward spoke the sentiment of the Free States: “The sun has set for the last time upon, the guaranteed and certain liberties of all the unsettled and unorganized portions of the American Continent that lie within the jurisdiction of the United States. To-morrow’s sun will rise in dim eclipse over them. .... The day of compromises has passed forever. . . . . Come on, then, gentlemen of the Slave States ! Since there is no escaping your challenge, I accept it in behalf of Freedom. We will engage in competition for the virgin soil of Kansas ; and God give the victory to the side that is stronger in numbers, as it is in right ! ”

The act became a law May 30, 1854. The South greeted it with bonfires and triumphal guns ; the North with tolling bells, and flags at half-mast. The Missourians were thoroughly wrought up. They had been educated to hold any tampering with their slaves worthy only of the noose or the fagot. In the Mexican war they had fought zealously for slavery in general. Now they could strengthen slavery at home. It would never do to permit a Free State just across the imaginary line, upon their long western border. Beside, those neighboring prairies, thirty years before so parched as to appear utterly worthless, now, blessed with abundant rains, were a blooming paradise for the farmer. Fanaticism, seeming self-interest, and the American lust for territory, all beckoned them in the same direction. They knew no fine-spun distinctions. They thought “ Popular Sovereignty” meant slavery in Kansas. So they went in to possess their promised land.

But just over its threshold they were amazed to find the Massachusetts Yankee there before them, with his family Bible and patent apple-parer, his “Weekly Tribune ” and Sharpe’s rifle. At first they regarded him with a curiosity as keen, if not as intelligent, as that which a new bird excited in Audubon, or a new fish kindles in Agassiz. What strange fellow was this, with his “ idear ” and “guess,” who did not drink buttermilk, nor build his chimneys on the outside of his house ? And their leading oracles, — all the St. Louis newspapers except the “ Democrat,” echoed by the whole border press, — their trusted Senators and Representatives, and their lesser politicians of the counties and the cross-roads, chimed in reply, “ He is the Abolitionist, here to make Kansas free, and steal your negroes. Defend your property and your rights ! ”

Western Missouri held the richest counties and the heaviest slave interests of the State. Its inhabitants had the leading frontier virtues, — they were honest, impetuous, brave, and hospitable ; but they were not a reading nor an intelligent people. Like most Southern communities, they followed blindly their public men. These influenced and stimulated them to the grossest violations of law. At a mass meeting in St. Joseph, General B. F. Stringfellow counselled them : “ I advise you, one and all, to enter every election district in Kansas, in defiance of Reeder and his vile myrmidons, and vote at the point of the bowie-knife and revolver. Neither give nor take quarter. It is enough that the slaveholding interest wills it, from which there is no appeal.”

Reeder was the Governor of Kansas. His “vile myrmidons” were the settlers from the North.

The Missourians obeyed. At the first election, seventeen hundred of them, with their rifles, blankets, and a few days’ provisions, marched into the Territory. Among their leaders were David R. Atchison, in his third term as a Senator, and Acting Vice-President of the United States ; Benjamin Stringfellow ; Claiborne F. Jackson, afterward Governor ; and M. W. Oliver, a Representative in Congress.

Under the Organic Act, every white male “ actual resident,” over twenty-one, was a voter. These interlopers claimed to be actual residents — while they stayed. They took possession of the polls, chose their own judges and clerks, deposited such ballots and made such returns as suited them, and, having played their farce, went back, one to his farm and another to his merchandise.

Thus, through two years, invaders did the voting for Kansas. They chose Legislatures composed largely of Missourians, who had never crossed into the Territory except on election days. These alien legislators set up in business as law-makers, wholesale and retail. With no delay, they extended over the conquered soil the entire civil and criminal code of Missouri. They added an act of greater stringency than any Southern State had yet ventured upon “ for the protection of slave property.” They bestowed charters upon a hundred and fifty town, bridge, ferry, turnpike, and railway companies, in which they themselves were chief corporators. In a few days they enacted laws which fill more than one thousand closely printed large octavo pages. Then they adjourned, and went home to their Missouri law offices and plantations.

A volume of their ponderous statutes now lies before me. Turning its ample pages, I find provisions which might be edicts of Herod or of Nero. But first comes the novel enactment, that, wherever “ State ” occurs in any clause, all courts shall construe it to mean, — not the State of Missouri, but the Territory of Kansas ! These imported legislators and legislative importers did not break packages. They received and issued their wares in bulk. Adopting en masse the laws of Missouri, they did not even stop to make the needful clerical changes.

I read further : Any negro attempting violence upon a white woman shall suffer bodily mutilation ; but “ homicide shall be deemed excusable when committed by accident or misfortune in lawfully correcting a child, apprentice, servant, or slave.” Any person aiding to entice or persuade a slave away from his master, or harboring or concealing a slave who has escaped from another State, may be punished with death ; but he who kidnaps and sells into slavery a free person is subject only to imprisonment “ not exceeding ten years.” No negro or mulatto, bond or free, is a competent witness against a white man. Any person who shall print, write, publish, circulate, or bring into the Territory any paper whatever containing “statements, opinions, or innuendoes calculated to produce dangerous disaffection among slaves,” or to induce them to run away, “shall be punished by imprisonment and hard labor for a term of not less than five years.” And finally, any free person who shall, by speaking or writing, deny the right to hold slaves in Kansas, or shall bring into the Territory any written or printed paper containing such denial, shall be imprisoned at hard labor for not less than two years !

Only ten years ago, these enactments, so infamous in origin, so atrocious in character, were the laws of Kansas. The Supreme Court of the Territory declared them constitutional. Two successive Presidents of the United States sustained them, and the national army stood ready to enforce them.

The Free-State settlers offered to these “bogus laws ” a negative resistance more potent than arms. They held them up to ridicule and scorn. They utterly denied their validity. They would vote at no elections, obey no legal processes, pay no taxes. When the first assessor appeared at Topeka, they prepared to hang him on the spot. He vanished, and never troubled them more. They would not even bring a civil suit before a magistrate claiming authority under this legislative farce. They adjusted pecuniary “ misunderstandings” by arbitration, and personal ones by fisticuffs, and hanged horsethieves on the most modern principles of mob-law. They treated the Missouri code as a dead letter, but seldom resisted it with violence. In a few cases, however, the hot blood of their young men found vent in rescuing a prisoner, or emptying a revolver at some peculiarly obnoxious marshal or sheriff.

The scurvy office-holders, who represented the invaders, and the administrations of Pierce and Buchanan, were at their wits’ end. They were like pugilists striking out at a feather-bed. They had at their call government dragoons from Fort Leavenworth and Fort Riley; but what were dragoons against a thing so shadowy and yet so terrible as public opinion ? Once, indeed, the soldiers broke up a FreeState Legislature which had assembled at Topeka. They were commanded by Edwin V. Sumner, then colonel of the First United States Cavalry. The gallant old soldier was acting under orders, and as he announced, from the Speaker’s stand, that the members must disperse, he declared that he was performing the most painful act of his life.

At last violence begot violence. Lecompte. Chief Justice of the Territory, charged a grand-jury that resistance to the bogus laws was high treason against the United States. And that jury, impanelled at the territorial capital, Lecompton, —which, like Atchison, Kickapoo, and Leavenworth, had a majority of proslavery settlers, — indicted as “ nuisances ” a Lawrence hotel and printing-press. These the Sheriff and his posse destroyed, together with a considerable portion of the young city. Two other newspaper offices were demolished. Leading FreeState men were held as treason prisoners in foul quarters, swarming with vermin. These commotions attracted desperadoes into the Territory, who murdered inoffensive Northern settlers, until the long-suffering inhabitants shouldered their fire-arms. Then the outrages were not all on one side.

The border blazed with guerilla warfare. Missourians began to hear the name of Jim Lane with terror. Discomfited invaders returned home with startling tales about the wonderful Sharpe’s rifle, whose whirling ball would bring down a man at half a mile, and bore a hole through his body as large as one’s wrist. They told also of an old man with a long beard, — the father of twenty children,—who wore sober, Quaker-like garments; drank nothing but water and milk ; prayed, and read the Bible in camp, every night and morning; exhorted about the sword of the Lord and of Gideon, and made bloody reprisals upon the public enemy. For old John Brown was in the field, urging his neighbors to fight more and talk less, and practising what he preached. Already he began to gather the young enthusiasts who finally followed him to Harper’s Ferry. Henry Clay Bate, editor and postmaster of Wesport, Missouri, led a band to arrest him. They met on the open prairie, and when, after a skirmish, John Brown captured the entire invading force, — more than twice as large as his own, — his fame was established among the border ruffians. Pate was a young Virginian of education and gentlemanly manners. Three years after John Brown achieved immortality on the Charlestown scaffold, he, too, fell, leading a regiment of Rebel cavalry in his native State.

In 1857 the tide turned. Even bona fide settlers from the South, who had welcomed the first invasions, began to feel sensitive about having their own soil longer outraged, and to become first-class Abolitionists. The South had proved utterly unable to compete with the North in colonizing. Outside of Missouri there was no organized emigration from any Slave State, except Georgia, which sent two feeble companies. Ohio alone had furnished more settlers to the Territory than Missouri, its next-door neighbor, and more than all the other Slave States combined. She had contributed one tenth of its entire population, Missouri almost another tenth, New York nearly the same fraction, Massachusetts about one twentieth, and the Northwest eight or nine twentieths.

The Free-State settlers made their first stand in Leavenworth at a municipal election. It was won, but not without bloodshed. I shall never forget the ghastly upturned face of the City Recorder, — a young Georgian, — who, while attempting to intimidate a Free-Soil voter with a drawn weapon, was stabbed to the heart, and fell dead upon the sidewalk. There was civil war enough afterward. A year later I saw the whole southeastern border under arms, and stood upon the spot where, one week before my visit, eleven inoffensive settlers, torn from their ploughs and work-shops, were wantonly shot down by Missouri murderers. Even after this it was six or eight months before the last blood was shed. But there were no formidable invasions subsequent to that Leavenworth election.

For the Missouri propagandists now had their hands full at home. A great reaction had set in. The masses saw the hopelessness of fixing slavery in Kansas, and the madness of invasion, — that two-edged sword which cut both ways. The Atchisons, Stringfellows, and Olivers had fallen, never to rise again. St. Louis, thanks to her Northern element, and the ever-true Germans who constituted half of her voters, had wheeled into the antislavery line ; and from that day — though for years later on slave soil—she was the only great city in the Union always sure for a Republican majority.

She elected Frank Blair to Congress, and Gratz Brown, with a full delegation of other Free-Soilers, to the Legislature. The late invaders of Kansas were astounded to hear Abolition doctrines boldly proclaimed in their own capitol, — by men, too, who wore revolvers, resented the least personal indignity, and, if challenged, fought duels with the most cheerful alacrity. The old spirit which had murdered Lovejoy and burned Lawrence was still rife; but these ugly customers, — backed by a great constituency, — who brought Southern tactics to the Northern side, were not good subjects for lynching. They advocated gradual emancipation in Missouri, only on the low ground that free labor would develop and enrich the State. Careful to disown the least sympathy for the negro, they even styled themselves “ The White Man’s Party.” But they inaugurated free speech, and that settled the question.

The gubernatorial canvass of 1857 exhibited curious paradoxes. Rollins, the Emancipation candidate, was a Kentuckian by birth, and the owner of one hundred slaves. Stewart, the antiEmancipationist, was a native of Massachusetts, and had only half a dozen slaves. It was a hot campaign with both rank and file. The two candidates stumped the State together, after the wholesome Western fashion. At one of their public discussions, one aspirant charged the other with falsehood. The other responded by knocking him off the platform. Like candidate like voter. Stewart was elected by a bare majority of three hundred. A few years later, and the rivals had changed partners. Stewart, the Propagandist, led a Union regiment in the field ; Rollins, the Emancipationist, was a Representative of the “ Peace Democracy” in Congress.

As the invaders had adopted the “ bogus laws ” by one sweeping act, the first genuine Kansas Legislature abrogated them by another equally sweeping. Then, in the streets of Lawrence, with loud huzzas, the people made a public bonfire of the huge volume of obsolete statutes. Another copy they forwarded to the Governor of Missouri, with the message, that, having no further use for the property, they took pleasure in sending it home.

Some paid off old scores by aiding negroes to escape to Iowa. Dr. John Doy was escorting thirteen of these fugitives, when a Missouri band, without any legal process, captured him in Kansas, fifty miles from the line. He was hurried to St. Joseph, and tried for enticing away slaves, — a felony whose extreme penalty was death. The indictment charged that the offence was committed in Missouri. The prosecution failed to prove that he had ever been within thirty miles of that State, yet the jury found him guilty. But one dark night, before he could be taken to the penitentiary, John Brown, with a few trusty comrades, crossed the river in a skiff, broke open the jail, re-kidnapped Doy from his kidnappers, and bore him home in triumph.

In 1860, out of one hundred and sixty five thousand votes, Missouri gave only seventeen thousand for Lincoln. And of these more than two thirds were polled in St. Louis County.

Then came the drum-beat of battle. Relatively the Unionists were no stronger than in Tennessee or North Carolina ; but they had organization and leaders. There were eighty-eight thousand Germans in the State, — nearly one tenth of the free population, — and they were loyal almost to a man. When President Lincoln first called for Union troops, Claiborne F. Jackson, the old Kansas invader, now Governor of the State, and leader of the Secessionists, replied that Missouri would not furnish a man. But within two weeks from that day, — thanks to the Germans again, — ten regiments of loyal soldiers Avere organized, equipped, and under arms in St. Louis.

Captain Nathaniel Lyon, commanding the Union forces, was a quiet, slender, stooping, red-haired, mild-visaged officer of the Regular Army. He looked more like a student than a soldier. But he was thoroughly earnest. By the prompt capture of Camp Jackson, a thinly disguised organization of Rebels, he took the initiative. Union troops, attacked in St. Louis, fired back upon their assailants with deadly results. Wildest excitement followed. A mob started to attack the “ Democrat ” office, but found it so well manned by resolute Unionists, leaning upon rifles, with piles of hand-grenades beside them, that it prudently desisted. The city was terror-stricken. Thousands of families thronged Eastern railway trains, and steamers at the landing, to fly from the bloody conflict which they believed impending.

War began in earnest. The Governor called for fifty thousand troops to “ rise and drive out ignominiously the invaders,” as he styled Union citizens who had sprung to arms to defend their own homes. In the frenzy caused by the first bloodshed, Sterling Price went over to the Rebels, taking with him about one third of the State Convention, over which he was presiding, and to which he had been elected as an unconditional Unionist. He was a plain, elderly planter, from one of the Interior counties. Though he had been Governor of the State, and led a small brigade in the Mexican war, he was believed to possess little capacity. But he proved a tower of strength to the Rebels, — by all odds their ablest general except Lee, with whom he had many qualities in common. For two years he kept Union armies greatly outnumbering his own very busy indeed. He inspired in his unpaid, illfed, barefooted soldiers the most enthusiastic devotion ; no Americans ever fought better than they. But he took the road to ruin. Only a few months ago he died, a broken-hearted old man, and was followed to the grave by the largest funeral procession ever witnessed in St. Louis.

Now the whirligig of time brought in his revenges. The blooy Kansas drama was re-enacted, on a tenfold larger scale, at the hearths of the very men who had performed it. The Rebel authorities were driven from the State. Claiborne Jackson himself, a hunted fugitive from his home and chair of office, died in the wilds of Arkansas. Newspapers were suppressed, towns were burned, the civil law was supplanted by the bayonet. Owen Lovejoy, in a Federal uniform, was leading soldiers who avenged many times over the murder of his brother, a quarter of a century before. On the western border, Lane and his Kansans ravaged with fire and sword the very counties which, six years earlier, had sent invading hordes to oppress them. This was long before the Emancipation Proclamation ; but they made a clean sweep of the negroes who sought their protection. On their first march, they sent back two thousand slaves into Kansas. Whenever a loyal master came to their camp in pursuit of his human property, with grim humor would they appraise the missing negro, give a certificate that — had “ lost one able-bodied slave,” valued at —, by the march of the Kansas brigade, and counsel him to keep the receipt until government should begin to pay for that class of property! In due time the negroes too reappeared in regiments, carrying muskets, at their old homes, — bloody instructions, returned to plague the inventors.

Missouri was under the harrow. She contributed thirty-five thousand men to the Rebel armies, and nearly a hundred thousand to the armies of the Union. For two years she suffered more on her own soil than any other Southern State.

At last the tide of war swept southward to return no more. She emerged, educated and purified by her experience. On the 11th of January, 1865, in Constitutional Convention, by a vote of sixty to four, she solemnly ordained : —

“ Hereafter, in this State, there shall be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except in punishment of crime, whereof the party shall have been duly convicted ; and all persons held to service or labor as slaves are hereby declared free.”

So she threw off her Old Man of the Sea. Though too young and vigorous to be crushed altogether under his weight, she had fallen behind her less strong, but unburdened, sisters. The census reports show how much : —


Iowa, 251 per cent.

Wisconsin, 154 “ “

Illinois, 101

Missouri, 73 “ “


1820. 1860.

Illinois, 55,161 1,711,951

Missouri, 66,557 1,182,012


Illinois, 3,250

Missouri, 938

In comparing the increase of Missouri with her neighbors, it is only fair to note the peculiar restlessness of her population. Though less than half her white inhabitants were born upon her own soil, she has sent forth relatively more emigrants than any other Commonwealth of the Union. She has contributed to Oregon more settlers than did any other State, to California more than any other State except New York, to Kansas more than any except Ohio, to Colorado more than any except New York and Ohio. And in every younger Territory, from Dakota and Montana to Texas and Arizona, the traveller is surprised to find whole counties peopled from prolific Missouri.

St. Louis has long enjoyed admirable public schools ; but in the interior education has languished. The census returns of i860 exhibit this sharp contrast : —

Inhabitants. Teachers.

Massachusetts, 1,231,066 6,398

Missouri, 1,182,012 3,008

But when the slaveholder went out, his old enemy, the schoolmaster, came in. The army of freedom carries in its baggage-train the spelling-book and the ballot. The new Constitution prescribes that after 1870 no man shall vote who cannot read and write. An excellent system of schools has been inaugurated. The Superintendent of Public Instruction, by adding to his report the vote of the two parties at the last election, shows how much more largely they are attended in Radical than in Conservative neighborhoods. A few counties, taken quite at random, will illustrate : —



Whole No. Children.


Radicul. Voters.

Conserv'e Voters.

Clark, 11,216 4,819 1,939 1,032 193

Mercer, 9,274 3,838 2,117 886 195

Howard, 9,986 3,847 429

Boone, 14,399 4,522 636

In mineral wealth Missouri is incomparable. The Granby Mines, in the southwest corner of the State, are very inaccessible, — supplies are hauled in and lead hauled out in wagons, two hundred miles to the nearest railway,— but last year they yielded 2,500,000 pounds. About seventy-six per cent of metal is extracted from the ore. A single pure block, weighing two thousand pounds, has been taken out. The ore is all found near the surface. One of the richest veins was struck by a squatter while digging a well. The region yields more lead upon the capital and labor employed than any other mines in the world. Lead crops out in more than five hundred distinct places through the State. The deposits already successfully worked underlie six thousand three hundred square miles, and lead-bearing rock is found over sixteen thousand more.

More wonderful yet are the deposits of iron. Iron Mountain, Pilot Knob, and Shepherd’s Mountain, one hundred miles south of St. Louis, are among the world’s rare curiosities. They are all of volcanic origin, — hills of solid metal. The first is the largest and richest mass yet found upon the globe. It covers five hundred acres. The ore, containing seventy per cent of pure iron, has been penetrated for four hundred feet below the surface, with no diminution of its richness even at that depth. Pilot Knob, a conical hill, six hundred feet high, and at the base covering three hundred and twenty acres, is also pure ore, containing sixty per cent of iron. Shepherd’s Mountain is equally rich. E. C. Swallow, the State Geologist, asserts that enough ore of the very best quality exists above the surface of the valleys, within a radius of a few miles, “ to furnish one million tons per annum of manufactured iron for the next two hundred years.” Much more satisfactory than this sweeping estimate is the statement, that already, before the smoke of battle has fairly cleared away, the Missouri furnaces are turning out twenty-five thousand tons per annum of domestic iron.

The " portable climate of our civilization ” is even more abundant. The coal measures underlie twenty - six thousand square miles, or more than one third of the entire State. The average workable thickness of the beds is estimated at five feet. The enthusiastic Swallow assures us that they “ can furnish one hundred million tons per annum for the next thirteen hundred years, and then have enough left for a few succeeding generations.” At least, enough for practical purposes !

Nine southeastern counties, covering two millions of acres, are known as the “ submerged lands.” These swamps, chiefly formed by the great earthquake, are of rich alluvium, often covered with stagnant water, which poisons the summer air with miasma. They are uninhabitable except upon the islands, which furnish homes for hunters and trappers. Some, dry a part of the year, are studded with enormous cypresses, which rise sixty or seventy feet without a branch. The islands produce noble oaks and hickories. It is believed that by a system of levees on the Mississippi, White, and St. Francis Rivers, this whole region could be drained and reclaimed for less than half a million of dollars. That would make it one of the most valuable portions of the State.

Valleys subject to overflow, and uplands where the rich soil is first opened to the air, generate chills and fever, — always prevalent in new countries, since it shook Julius Cæsar out of Gaul. Typhoid fevers, too, abound in some regions during early autumn ; but in general the State is healthful.

Three million acres of public lands are still open to entry at $ 1.25 to $ 2.50 per acre. But they are the leavings of forty years, and their quality is poor. The valley of the Missouri, opposite Kansas, and several other sections, produce tobacco and hemp abundantly; and there is a well-founded saying among the farmers, that land which will raise hemp will raise any other crop. Flax, wheat, corn, oats, grasses, and, in southern counties, cotton, all flourish. Most of the prairies are in the northern half of the State ; though a belt two or three counties wide leaving the Missouri near Booneville, and runningsouthwest through Missouri, Kansas, and the Indian Territory, is the fairest and richest body of prairie land in the world.

Every variety of Northern fruit thrives. Grape-culture, begun in 1849, has become a prominent industrial interest. Missouri wines, improving year by year, are already favorably known throughout America and Europe. The principal difficulties are rot and mildew, — both prevented by proper drainage and selection of soil. Thus far, the Catawba and Norton’s Seedling are the most successful grapes. Two hundred and fifty gallons of wine per acre is given as the average yield ; but single acres have produced one thousand gallons. As yet the principal vineyards are on the Missouri ; but the grape thrives in every portion of the State. Even on the flint ridges of the Ozark Hills it produces luxuriantly. Missouri is believed to contain five millions of acres adapted to its culture, — an area equal to all the vineyards of France, and capable of employing remuneratively two millions of people.

Hitherto St. Louis has kept five or six years behind Chicago in reaching out railway arms to regions naturally tributary to her ; but now she seems to be rousing. She is pushing her locomotives south toward Memphis, and west far toward the Rocky Mountains. One railway bridge is springing across the Missouri at St. Charles, and another at Kansas City ; and St. Louis is bridging the Mississippi with a structure which will cost five millions of dollars. She is waxing mighty in manufactures ; the smoke of her foundries and machine-shops ascendeth for ever and ever. Coming from bituminous coal, it makes St. Louis the dirtiest city upon our continent, with the single exception of Pittsburg. Relics of early French days exist, in the narrow streets, and quaint brick and frame houses ; and even one or two of the pioneer logcabins are still standing.

Every section of the State is favorable to stock-growing, and contains abundant water-power for manufacturing. Rich deposits of tin are found in the southeast; some day they may cut off our importations from Cornwall. The forests abound in black-walnut and other valuable timber. Every' variety of building-stone exists, from solid granite to fine-grained marble, white and variegated.

Such is Missouri, the “uninhabitable ” of early explorers and settlers, from De Soto to Benton. It covers four parallels of latitude and five meridians of longitude, with a land area of sixty-seven thousand square miles. It is one third as large as France, half as large as the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. It is an empire in itself, bisected by the second river of the globe, watered upon its whole eastern border by the third, and threaded by other important streams. It has a genial climate, boundless agricultural, horticultural, mineral, and manufactural resources, and a pleasantly diversified surface, rising from Ohio City, — three hundred feet above tide-water, — to the summit of the Ozark Hills, twelve hundred feet higher.

In 1360 it contained ninety-three thousand cultivated farms and plantations, and three thousand manufacturing establishments, employing a capital of twenty million dollars. In 1870 its inhabitants will fall little short of two millions. It is by all odds the richest interior State of our whole Union. May the ideas that mould its future be as generous as its material resources !