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FIRST WORD S.
The digest of the testimony in Mr. Bushnell's case was made during the progress of the trial, and with such care that it is believed it will be found more accurate and comprehensive than any hitherto published. The arguments of Messrs. Riddle, Spalding, Griswold, Backus, and Wolcott were reported phonographically, and are published with the sanction of their authors. Every effort was made to secure equally full and accurate reports of the arguments of the counsel for the Government, but, unfortunately, without success. For such use as has been made of the materials of others, it has been endeavored to accord due acknowledgment elsewhere, save that it remains to mention here the kind offices of. Mr. J. H. Kagi, of Mr. J.M. Greene, and of one whose modesty forbids, the mention of her name. To Mr. Greene, the reader is indebted for the stereoscopic view which is found engraved upon the title-page.
The materials with which the writer has wrought, have been superabundant. Much that seemed scarcely less important than the rest, and at first none less, has been nécessarily omitted. Necessarily, lest the general reader should feel burdened. To the people of Ohio, it is believed that every link of this remarkable chain of events has surpassing significance and interest. But, lest it may not be so abroad, the best judgment of the compiler lias been taxed to omit nothing essential, while accepting nothing trivial. If others would have chosen more wisely, no one can regret more sincerely than himself that their counsel was not seasonably at his command.
Such typographical errors as may have escaped notice in tļie proofs, the reader is asked to be patient with, in consideration of the urgency with which the work has been pressed; the last page being in type within eight days after the Reception of Mr. Bushnell.
THE OBERLIN-WELLINGTON RESCUE.
The modest village of WELLINGTON,
which THE RESCUE has been variously called, in of late seems to have had greatness - or, better, different prints, “ The Oberlin Rescue," " The perhaps, notoriety - thrust upon it, is by no Wellington Rescue,” and “The Oberlin-Welmeans a locality of pretentious claims. It is a lington Rescue.” It is sufficient to remark, that plain, thriving village, in a flourishing and pop- the alleged fugitive was a resident of Oberlin, ulous township of the same name, and lies upon was arrested near home, and taken to Wellingthe Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati Rail ton, whence, with the aid of friends, he is said Road, thirty-six miles south-west of the city first to have made his escape.
These friends were named. It is, therefore, within the bounds of from Oberlin as well as from Wellington, and that part of Northern Ohio widely known as very naturally, perhaps, the Oberlin friends the "Connecticut Western Reserve," which were the more active in his behalf. But since was first settled some forty-five or fifty years the locality of THE RESCUE was Wellington, ago by the representatives of Puritan New it seems natural, without entering into any comEngland, and has ever since been noted for the parative analysis of the assistance contributed characteristics of the men who founded and by the citizens of either place to the release of shaped its social, political, and religious insti- our hero, to denominate it, as for the purposes tutions.
of this volume we shall, “ THE OBERLIN-WELOBERLIN is a village of some 3,000 perma- LINGTON RESCUE.” nent inhabitants, to which, for nine months in Before ushering the reader into the labyrinthe year, may be added 800 students, who seek thical mazes of this necessarily multitudinous the advantages afforded in the various depart- volume, benevolence would seem to dictate an ments, academic, collegiate, and theological, of outline sketch of the ground which is so disOBERLIN COLLEGE. It lies upon the South- connectedly and repetitiously beaten by the ern Division of the Cleveland and Toledo Rail | thousand feet of witnesses, counsel, court, and Road, nine miles due north of Wellington, and compiler, in the progress of these pages. thirty-three miles nearly west of Cleveland. Know, then, gentle reader, that some time in Both these communities are within the county the month of January, in the year of our Lord of Lorain, of which the village of Elyria, six- one thousand eight hundred and fifty-six, we teen miles distant from Wellington and eight are told that a negro slave, called John, about from Oberlin, is the county seat.
eighteen years of age, was missing from the plantation of Mr. John G. Bacon, a citizen of ( stay at the Russia House, and the colored peothe northern part of Mason county, Kentucky. ple having become alarmed for their personal Late in August, 1858, Mr. Anderson Jennings, safety, by an attempt only a few days kefore to a neighbor and personal friend of this bereaved kidnap at midnight an entire family, Lyr. Jenplanter, taking a northerly tour in pursuit of nings and his party, as he tells us, were advised some escaped chattels belonging to his uncle's by their landlord and other sympat izing estate, to which he sustained the relation of an friends, that an attempt at arrest with billige administrator, stopped a few days in Oberlin, bounds of the village might not impossit as and while there became possessed of information attended with difficulties, and perhaps fajl oss! which induced him to write at once to his friend complete success. Inquiry for "
a man whom Bacon that the long lost John was undoubtedly a fellow could put confidence in,” to quote the in Oberlin, and that with the assistance of a gentleman's own affecting words, introduced witness and the authority of a power of attor- him to the acquaintance of Mr. Lewis D. Bøynney, the writer would quite likely be able to ton, a gentleman-farmer, whose residencis capture and return him to the domestic hearth. some three miles north of the College. As the Omitting intervening details, let it suffice to say result of a visit extending from Saturday eventhat on Wednesday the eighth of September ing to Sabbath evening, a son of this Mr. following, Mr. Jennings found the wish of his Boynton, aged thirteen years, and bearing Turiz neighborly heart gratified, by pressing the hand less a name than that of the Bard of Avonof Richard P. Mitchell, a gentleman whom he was engaged for a stipulated price to decor had known as an employee of Mr. Bacon, and John into a ride out of town the next day, and receiving at his hand a document purporting to at a specified place to deliver him into the bosom be a duly drawn and certified power of attor- of his old friends, who had so long sought him ney, authorizing Anderson Jennings to capture sorrowing. and return to the State of Kentucky, one negro This plan, after a slight amendment, proved, slave called John, who, owing service to John successful, and John was arrested on Monday, G. Bacon in said State, had unlawfully, know- the 13th of September, at about 11 o'clock, A. ingly, and willingly escaped therefrom--together M., some one and three fourths miles north-east with the assurance that he, Mr. Mitchell, could of Oberlin, by Jacob K. Lowe, Richard P. identify the truant beyond the possibility of Mitchell, and Samuel Davis; Mr. Jennings mistake. To make assurance doubly sure, Mr. prudently declining to expose the head of the Jennings next day took the cars for Columbus, expedition to unnecessary peril. possibly not being aware that he was travelling The successful posse, with their prisoner, took from one judicial district into another, and ob- a road which passed at a safe distance to the tained a warrant from one Sterne Chittenden of east of Oberlin toward Wellington, where in that place, who certifies himself to be a U.S. Com- due time they arrived, and took quarters at the missioner, and authorized by an act of Congress hospitable house of one Wadsworth, at that approved Sept. 18, 1850, to issue such war- time the proprietor of the Wadsworth House. rants, ---- commanding the U. S. Marshal, or Young Shakespeare, returning from the place any deputy U. S. Marshal of the Southern of capture to the Russia House, hastened to reDistrict of Ohio, to apprehend, etc., the boy lieve Mr. Jennings's painful anxieties, and was John; which warrant was intrusted for execu- rewarded with twice the promised fee. Making tion to Jacob K. Lowe, who is said to be a a hasty and slender meal, as we may well supdeputy of the U. S. Marshal for the said South- pose, Mr. Jennings was soon being rapidly exern District. Mr. Lowe engaged the assistance pressed toward Wellington, his affectionate of Samuel Davis, Esq., an acting Deputy-Sheriff heart overflowing with a tumult of the tenderof Franklin county, and the trio set out for est emotions at the prospect of once more Oberlin, where they arrived on the evening of embracing his long-lost sable friend, and speedFriday.
ily restoring him to home and happiness. The suspicions of the good people of Oberlin But the ways of Providence are inscrutable. having been aroused by the strange conduct of As Marshal Lowe and his party were entering Mr. Jennings during his previous protracted Pittsfield on their way Wellington-ward, two
young men met them. These young men has- cer from executing his writ. To warrant the tened to Oberlin with a description of the party, charge, however, of unlawfully obstructing the and a few moments sufficing to ascertain that arrest of a fugitives from labor, soine act of in
terference on the part of the person accused John was missing
that he had been last seen must be proved, tending to impair the right of driving toward New Oberlin with Shakespeare recaption secured by the statute. Mere obBoynton--that Shakespeare had returned with-struction, hinderance, or interruption is no ofout him--and that the Southerners had all fence unless made to prevent a seizure in the
first instance, or a recaption in case of escape. left town -- an intense excitement seems to Yet it is not necessary, to constitute an obstruchave become manifest, and to have taken the tion in the sense of the terın used in the statute, shape of pursuing parties. A large crowd that force or violence should be actually resortlingered about the hotel until late in the after-ed to, to defeat an arrest. The refusal to per
mit an arrest on the premises of another, after noon, and then suddenly dispersed. What notice that the person sought to be taken is a happened and what did not happen inside this fugitive from labor, and a demand of permiscrowd and between it and the parties having sion to arrest such person is, under the law, an John in custody, the reader must glean as best obstruction. And so is the removal of the alhe can from the testimony. He will find much leged fugitive by the direction of another, when
. that is contradictory, some things impossible, reason that the officer, in executing the writ, is some improbable, and some, we think, worthy under no obligation to commit a trespass or a of credit, there stated; all of which has with breach of the peace in carrying out his purmuch care and labor been written out from the
“ There are some who oppose the execution witnesses' mouths for his eye, and is submitted of this law from a declared sense of consciento him as a member of that Great Jury, before tious duty. There is, in fact, a sentiment prevwhich all prisoners are tried, and to which they alent in the community which arrogates to look for condemnation or acquittal with far independent of
, human laws; and it makes the
human conduct a standard of right above, and greater anxiety than to the twelve men who CONSCIENCE of each individual in society the render the special verdict in Court.
TEST of his own ACCOUNTABILITY to the laws
of the land. THE GRAND JURY. So flagrant a protec- “ While those who cherish this dogma claim tion of the rights of a citizen of a Free State and enjoy the protection of the law for their may well be supposed to have appealed in no own lives and property, they are unwilling that uncertain tones to the powers that be — id est of the constitutional rights of others. It is a
the law should be operative for the protection of course, the Federal Administration. The sentiment semi-religious in its development, and U. S. District and Circuit Court for the North- is almost invariably characterized by intolerern District of Ohio straightway assembles a' ance and bigotry. The LEADERS of those who Grand Jury, and the Judge thereof breaks to acknowledge its obligations and advocate its Grand Jury, and the Judge thereof breaks to sanctity are like the subtle prelates of the dark them his woes in the following painful strains : ages. They are versed in all they consider
useful and sanctified learning -- trained in cer“ He remarked, that in consequence of oc- tain schools in New England to manage words, currences which had recently transpired in an they are equally successful in the social circle adjoining county, he had been requested by the to manage hearts; seldom superstitious themDistrict-Attorney to call the attention of the selves, yet skilled in practising upon the superJury to this act of Congress. He said this sec- stition and credulity of others- FALSE, as it tion prohibits the obstruction of every species is natural a man should be whose dogmas imof process, legal or judicial, whether issued by pose upon all who are not saints according to a Court in session, or a Judge, or a United HIS CREED the necessity of being hypocrites States Circuit Court Commissioner, acting in SELFISı, as it is natural a man should be who the due administration of this law of the United claims for himself the benefits of the law and States. "It matters not whether the warrant is the right to violate it, thereby denying its probeing served by the United States Marshal tection to others more attached to his own himself, his deputies, or any one else lawfully peculiar theories of government than to his empowered to serve such writ.
country, and constantly striving to guide the " The offence of obstructing process does not politics of the nation with a view of overthrownecessarily consist of acts of rude violence. It ing the Constitution and establishing instead a may consist in refusing to give up possession, or Utopian government, or rather no government opposing, or obstructing the execution of the at all, if based on the Federal Union. writ by threats of violence, which it is in his " Gentlemen, this sentiment should find no power to enforce, and thus preventing the ofti- place or favor in the Grand-Jury room. Its tendency leads to the subversion of all law, of Oberlin. To this, polite assent was given, and a consequent insecurity of all the constitu- and the two set out for the purpose. Fifteen tional rights of the citizen. The Fugitive Slave Law, may, and unquestionably does, contain of the twenty-one sought were found, and arprovisions repugnant to the moral sense of many rested. The Marshal protesting that he felt as good and conscientious people. - Nevertheless, safe with the word as with the bond of any it is the law of the United States, and as such one of them, and that he wished to go on to should be recognized and executed by our Courts and Juries until abrogated or otherwise Wellington without delay, they would oblige changed by the legislative department of the him by remaining at their places of business as Government." Ours is a government of laws, usual until the morning train next day, when and it is by virtue of the law that you and I, they might set out alone for Cleveland, where and every other citizen, whether residing north or south of the Ohio River, enjoys protection he would await them in the depôt, —- it was for his life and security for his property."
unanimously decided, after consultation, to do
so, and Mr. Johnson departed in peace. At The names of the gentlemen composing this Wellington, having no Prof. Peck to assist him, Grand Jury were as follows:
he succeeded in finding only a few individuals,
and obtained from such as he found but qualiForeman, DANIEL P. LEADBETTER.
fied promises of voluntary appearance. Con-, GORDIAS II. HALL, LEWIS D. BOYNTON,
tent with such success as he met, however, he Oris REET, EDSON T. STICKNEY,
took the evening train homeward, as empty HENRY H. GRĘGG, ANDREW W. Morrison, handed as he came. The occurrences of the RICHARD WILSON, ASHAEL MEDBURY,
day following are accurately detailed by the Philo ScoviLL, FRENCH W. THORXILILL, correspondent of the New York Tribune: ROBERT CARROx, Jony FRIEND,
STARTING FOR COURT. - At 10:42 this Anson Haydn, SAMUEL CLARK.
forenoon, fifteen of the twenty-one residents of After several weeks of severe labor they Oberlin for whom warrants were issued left the brought forth bills, whereupon warrants were Oberlin station, amid the shouts and huzzas of issued to the Marshal, on the 7th of December, a large crowd of ladies and gentlemen who had
A considerable against the following persons, most of them assembled to see them off. residents of Oberlin or Wellington:-
number of the most prominent men of the vil
lage, including Mayor Beecher, volunteered to John H. Scott,
accompany the prisoners and see them comSimeon Bushnell, Abner Loveland,
fortably quartered or safely returned. Marshal James R. Shepard, Lewis Hines,
Johnson was in waiting as they left the cars, Ansel W. Lyman, Matthew Gillett,
and pointing the prisoners to omnibuses bound Henry Evans, Chauncey Goddyear, for the Bennett House, directed them to take Wilson Evans,
good care of themselves and be ready for a call Wm. E. Scrimeger, Henry D. Niles,
at 2 o'clock. After dinner, the Hon. R. P. Henry E. Peck, Eli Boies,
Spalding, the Hon. A. G. Riddle, and S. O. James M. Fitch, Charles Langston,
Griswold, Esq., who had volunteered their serWilliam Watson, James Bartlett,
vices for the defence, free of charge, were called Thomas Gena,
Robert Windsor, Oliver S. B. Wall, William E. Lincoln,
in for consultation. Soon after 2 o'clock, the Walter Soules, Jeremiah Fox,
parties proceeded to the court-room. William Sciples, John Copeland,
THE TRIAL BEGUN. - The MARSHAL read Ralph Plumb, James H. Bartlett, John Mandeville, Robert I. Cummings.
the names of the persons upon whom he had Matthew De Wolfe,
served processes at Oberlin, with the number
of the bills in which their names severally The same day Marshal Johnsox appeared stood. Judge SPALDING, acting for the dein Oberlin, accompanied by a single attendant.
fence, entered a plea of Not Guilty, in behalf He called first at Prof. Peck's study, and as
of all. gently as possible broached his errand, con
Those who responded were as follows: cluding with an exhibition of the huge packet
No. of Bill. of warrants; and requesting introduction to
John H. Scott,
Not Guilty. such of the persons attached as were residents' Ilenry E. Peck, 95 Aiding & Abetting: Not Guilty.