John J. Crittenden and his Compromise

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Brigadier General
Forum Host
Apr 11, 2016
NE Georgia - SC
John Jordan Crittenden Sr.:

Born: September 10, 1787

Birthplace: Versailles Kentucky

Father: Major John Crittenden 1756 – 1806

(Buried: Buried on farm)

Mother: Judith Harris 1760 – 1800

(Buried: Frankfort Cemetery Frankfort Kentucky)

1st Wife: Sarah O. Lee 1787 – 1824

(Buried: Frankfort Cemetery Frankfort Kentucky)

2nd Wife: Maria Knox Innes 1796 – 1851

(Buried: Frankfort Cemetery Frankfort Kentucky)

3rd Wife: Elizabeth Moss 1804 – 1873

(Buried: Bellefontaine Cemetery St. Louis Missouri)


Brig. General George Bibb Crittenden 1812 – 1880

(Buried: Frankfort Cemetery Frankfort Kentucky)

Ann Mary Crittenden Coleman 1813 – 1891

(Buried: Frankfort Cemetery Frankfort Kentucky)

Alexander Parker Crittenden 1816 – 1870

(Buried: Cypress Lawn Memorial Park Colma California)

Cornelia A. Crittenden Young 1816 – 1890

(Buried: Bellevue Cemetery Danville Kentucky)

Major General Thomas Leonidas Crittenden 1819 – 1893

(Buried: Frankfort Cemetery Frankfort Kentucky)

Sarah Lee Crittenden Watson 1821 – 1887

(Buried: Frankfort Cemetery Frankfort Kentucky)

Robert Henry Crittenden 1822 – 1898

(Buried: Frankfort Cemetery Frankfort Kentucky)

Dr. John Jordan Crittenden Jr. 1831 – 1854

(Buried: Frankfort Cemetery Frankfort Kentucky)

Eugene Wilkinson Crittenden 1832 – 1873

(Buried: Frankfort Cemetery Frankfort Kentucky)


Attended Washington College

1806: Graduated from College of William & Mary


Attorney in Woodford County Kentucky

1809 – 1810: Illinois Territory Attorney General

1812: Aide to Governor of Kentucky

Attorney in Russellville Kentucky

1811 – 1817: Kentucky State Representative

1817 – 1819: United States Senator from Kentucky

1817 – 1819: Senate Chairman of Judiciary Committee

1825: Kentucky State Representative

1827 – 1829: United States District Attorney in Kentucky

1829 – 1832: Kentucky State Representative

1835 – 1841: United States Senator from Kentucky

1841: United States Attorney General

1842 – 1848: United States Senator from Kentucky

1842 – 1845: Senate Chairman of Military Affairs Committee

1848 – 1850: Governor of Kentucky

1850 – 1853: United States Attorney General

1855 – 1861: United States Senator from Kentucky

1859 – 1861: Senate Chairman of Revolutionary Claims Committee

1860: Supporter of John Bell’s Presidential Campaign

1860: Sponsor of Crittenden Compromise

1861 – 1863: U.S. Congressman from Kentucky

1861 – 1863: Congressional Chairman of Foreign Affairs Committee

Died: July 26, 1863

Place of Death: Frankfort Kentucky

Age at time of Death: 75 years old

Burial Place: Frankfort Cemetery Frankfort Kentucky


Crittenden Compromise:
  1. Slavery would be prohibited in any territory of the United States "now held, or hereafter acquired," north of latitude 36 degrees, 30 minutes line. In territories south of this line, slavery of the African race was "hereby recognized" and could not be interfered with by Congress. Furthermore, property in African slaves was to be "protected by all the departments of the territorial government during its continuance." States would be admitted to the Union from any territory with or without slavery as their constitutions provided.
  2. Congress was forbidden to abolish slavery in places under its jurisdiction within a slave state such as a military post.
  3. Congress could not abolish slavery in the District of Columbia so long as it existed in the adjoining states of Virginia and Maryland and without the consent of the District's inhabitants. Compensation would be given to owners who refused consent to abolition.
  4. Congress could not prohibit or interfere with the interstate slave trade.
  5. Congress would provide full compensation to owners of rescued fugitive slaves. Congress was empowered to sue the county in which obstruction to the fugitive slave laws took place to recover payment; the county, in turn, could sue "the wrong doers or rescuers" who prevented the return of the fugitive.
  6. No future amendment of the Constitution could change these amendments or authorize or empower Congress to interfere with slavery within any slave state
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