The Corwin Amendment

Joined
Mar 15, 2018
This is contradictory. If they were no longer welcome to shop they would run out of supplies and begin to starve. Which is what happened.
Anderson was allowed to procure supplies for his detachment in the Charleston marketplace all the way up to the point where it became known that a large fleet of military vessels was departing from New York. It was presumed that the fleet was heading for Charleston, South Carolina. In other words there was never any chance that Anderson’s detachment was going to starve to death because the order that came down from L.P. Walker (the Confederate Secretary of War) to keep them out of the Charleston marketplace was issued only a short time prior to the actual bombardment of Fort Sumter.
 

DanSBHawk

Captain
Joined
May 8, 2015
Location
Wisconsin
Anderson was allowed to procure supplies for his detachment in the Charleston marketplace all the way up to the point where it became known that a large fleet of military vessels was departing from New York. It was presumed that the fleet was heading for Charleston, South Carolina. In other words there was never any chance that Anderson’s detachment was going to starve to death because the order that came down from L.P. Walker (the Confederate Secretary of War) to keep them out of the Charleston marketplace was issued only a short time prior to the actual bombardment of Fort Sumter.
Not true. The garrison was cut off from supplies from Charleston before word of the provisioning expedition became known. The secessionists were trying to force the situation.
 

unionblue

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Member of the Year
Joined
Feb 20, 2005
Location
Ocala, FL (as of December, 2015).
In the final days of the antebellum period the south was up in arms over the issue of slavery to a certain extent, and a defense of slavery was even written into the secession documents of a handful of southern states, and this fact is constantly being dredged up by the apologists of northern aggression in an effort to demonstrate that the “civil war” was fought primarily over the issue of slavery. In the view of the said apologists, these out-of-context statements offer some kind of “proof” that the southern states were driven primarily by a desire to protect the peculiar institution of slavery.

In my own view, folks in the southern states were getting sick and tired of being verbally and physically harassed by the “holier-than-thou” denizens of New York and New England.

In one of several notable provocations, John Brown of Connecticut went into a section of what is now West Virginia, at Harpers Ferry, with the intention of leading a bloody slave uprising.

Incidents such as the affair at Harpers Ferry had the effect of making the southern states “dig in.” The existence of pro-slavery language in secession documents must therefore be seen in light of the historical context. In my own view these statements can only be understood as constituting a defensive response that was thrown together under duress and in the face of hostile rhetoric that was emanating from the likes of various northern radicals like John Brown et al.

I wonder why the southern states never agreed to ratify the proposed 13th amendment to the constitution a.k.a. the Corwin Amendment ? This amendment was a virtual “dream come true” for the alleged lovers of slavery. All they had to do was to renounce secession and stay in the union, and the institution of slavery would have been protected forever.

There are already plenty of Ft. Sumter threads.

Can we please get back to your original post concerning the Corwin amendment?
 
Joined
Mar 15, 2018
The "armada" of warships you claimed were sent consisted of one transport ship and one revenue cutter that were within the internationally accepted U.S. territorial waters of 3 nautical miles. The only warship, the USS Pawnee, was ordered to hold her position 10 [nautical] miles east of the lighthouse that would have put her well outside of territorial waters. So do you want to detail how these ships posed a threat to the rebellious state of South Carolina and the multitude of Confederate artillery that was used to pulverize a United States fort and her soldiers into surrender?
Lincoln pulled off a great deception by getting the confederate authorities to think that they were under the imminent threat of a military invasion. He knew that they were going to open fire as soon as they saw the federal warships looming on the horizon. It was a masterful stroke of genius, but it still doesn’t change the fact that he - Lincoln - was the aggressor.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Mar 15, 2018
Not true. The garrison was cut off from supplies from Charleston before word of the provisioning expedition became known. The secessionists were trying to force the situation.
The confederates could have starved out Anderson if they had really wanted to BUT THE THOUGHT OF DOING SO PROBABLY NEVER EVEN OCCURRED TO THEM.
 

unionblue

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Member of the Year
Joined
Feb 20, 2005
Location
Ocala, FL (as of December, 2015).
Again, There are already plenty of Ft. Sumter threads.

Can we please get back to your original post concerning the Corwin amendment?
Lincoln pulled off a great deception by getting the confederate authorities to think that they were under the imminent threat of a military invasion. He knew that they were going to open fire as soon as they saw the federal warships looming on the horizon. It was a masterful stroke of genius, but it still doesn’t change the fact that he - Lincoln - was the aggressor.
 

DanSBHawk

Captain
Joined
May 8, 2015
Location
Wisconsin
Lincoln pulled off a great deception by getting the confederate authorities to think that they were under the imminent threat of a military invasion. He knew that they were going to open fire as soon as they saw the federal warships looming on the horizon. It was a masterful stroke of genius, but it still doesn’t change the fact that he - Lincoln - was the aggressor.
So yet another episode of Evil Genius Abe Lincoln Tricks Peace-Loving Southern Simpletons Into Shooting First.
 

NedBaldwin

Major
Joined
Feb 19, 2011
Location
California
There are already plenty of Ft. Sumter threads.

Can we please get back to your original post concerning the Corwin amendment?
Well said!

I want to know why, when Congress was voting on the amendment, the only NO vote that wasn't a northern Republican was Congressman Thomas Hindman (the future Confederate General) from Arkansas.

All the other no votes were Republicans; and all the other southerners (a couple dozen from
VA, TN, NC, AR plus another couple dozen from KY, MD and MO, which I consider to be southern) voted yes.

What was Hindman's deal?
 

LetUsHavePeace

Volunteer
Joined
Dec 1, 2018
Edited.
With the Corwin Amendment there is no evidence that it made any difference at all. No matter what people did and said a war was going to come. The only question to be answered was what would be the opening salvo.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

jesse_james

Cadet
Joined
Jun 5, 2021
The confederates could have starved out Anderson if they had really wanted to BUT THE THOUGHT OF DOING SO PROBABLY NEVER EVEN OCCURRED TO THEM.

It seems strange that the thought never occurred to them, even after they Beauregard took steps to ensure no food was reaching the fort from the city (which must certainly was done, Union soldiers buying food in Charleston during the quasi-war prior notwithstanding). Then during the surrender ultimatum of April 11th, Anderson revealed to the Confederate envoys "I shall await the first shot, and if you do not batter us to pieces, we shall be starved out in a few days," and the planned bombardment was slightly delayed after the comment was relayed to Beauregard and he sent the envoys back to say they would not fire if he stated the day he would surrender (i.e. as a result of being starved out). Anderson's conditional reply, and of course knowledge that a resupply effort was close by, decided the issue, but it was a close-run thing and certainly the Confederacy had hoped they could be "starved out" before they had to fire the initial shots of the war.

No, there were two (2) separate countries at the time of the engagement at Fort Sumter (the USA and the CSA) and as a requirement for maintaining peace it was incumbent on them to have respect for the other’s boundaries.

You initiated what has become a most marvelous thread here, in which many hundreds of intelligence posts debated the legal and diplomatic status of the Confederate States. If you were following your own thread, you'd know that the consensus among jurists, diplomats, historians, and all other informed persons that the CSA never achieved the status of "independent country" even at its zenith. And certainly not before April 12th 1861, when it didn't even have belligerent status.

BTW, the aggression against Fort Sumter started before secession in South Carolina and well before the Montgomery Convention created a provisional government. There were no boundaries when Fort Sumter's investment began, not even practical or theoretical ones.

...Anyway, as to your original thread, I think Copperhead and Zach have given fine answers. You yourself have answered it:

Delaware had pledged its loyalty to Lincoln’s “union” and the fact that Lincoln never invaded the slave-loving state of Delaware only goes to prove that the “civil war” was fought because the Lincoln was bent on forcing the seceded states back into his “union” and that the issue of slavery was nothing but mere “window dressing” ...

The war was about preserving the Union. And from the Union's POV, the abolition of slavery was not an original war aim. But then the question becomes: why did the states secede? You have stated here the war was over secession. So what was secession about?

You claim that the rejection of the Corwin Amendment in favor of continued secession is proof that the Southern states were not seceding because of slavery. But that ignores the entire, and at that time nascent, history of the United States. The abolitionist movement was not a serious threat to the institution of slavery in Southern states and no one thought that it really was immediately endangered. The larger issue was over Western expansion, control over those territories, and whether they would allow for slavery. The Mexican War was largely fought to procure these territories and it was the aim of the South to cultivate them. With slaves. If they were to be free states, then they would be, as a matter of demographics, largely cultivated by immigrants and Northerners, and some saw in this the specter of slavery's doom. And likely it would have been as slavery was inefficient and non-slave agrarian states in the West might well usurp their agrarian market share.

There is so much abundant evidence of this view (and others, directly or tangentially around the issue of slavery) that it's silly to even debate it -- it dominated politics from the Mexican War onwards. The prominent secession politicians were most vocal on this issue in their antebellum careers. Again, secession politics were less about the preservation of slavery in Southern states, rather for the expansion of it to the newly acquired territory. And the Corwin Amendment didn't give them an inch.

"Mr. President, the fierce strife we have had with the Northern States, which has led to the disruption of the Government, is a trumpet-tongued answer to this question. They have declared, by the election of Lincoln, “There shall be no more slave territory–no more slave States.” To this the Cotton States have responded by acts of secession and a Southern Confederacy; which is but a solemn declaration of these States, that they will not submit to the Northern idea of restricting slavery to its present limits, and confining it to the slave States." -S. C. Posey, Alabama Secession Convention

edit: fixing auto-correct of 'secession' to 'session'
 
Last edited:

Dead Parrott

Sergeant
Joined
Jul 30, 2019
It seems strange that the thought never occurred to them, even after they Beauregard took steps to ensure no food was reaching the fort from the city (which must certainly was done, Union soldiers buying food in Charleston during the quasi-war prior notwithstanding). Then during the surrender ultimatum of April 11th, Anderson revealed to the Confederate envoys "I shall await the first shot, and if you do not batter us to pieces, we shall be starved out in a few days," and the planned bombardment was slightly delayed after the comment was relayed to Beauregard and he sent the envoys back to say they would not fire if he stated the day he would surrender (i.e. as a result of being starved out). Anderson's conditional reply, and of course knowledge that a resupply effort was close by, decided the issue, but it was a close-run thing and certainly the Confederacy had hoped they could be "starved out" before they had to fire the initial shots of the war.



You initiated what has become a most marvelous thread here, in which many hundreds of intelligence posts debated the legal and diplomatic status of the Confederate States. If you were following your own thread, you'd know that the consensus among jurists, diplomats, historians, and all other informed persons that the CSA never achieved the status of "independent country" even at its zenith. And certainly not before April 12th 1861, when it didn't even have belligerent status.

BTW, the aggression against Fort Sumter started before session in South Carolina and well before the Montgomery Convention created a provisional government. There were no boundaries when Fort Sumter's investment began, not even practical or theoretical ones.

...Anyway, as to your original thread, I think Copperhead and Zach have given fine answers. You yourself have answered it:



The war was about preserving the Union. And from the Union's POV, the abolition of slavery was not an original war aim. But then the question becomes: why did the states secede? You have stated here the war was over session. So what was session about?

You claim that the rejection of the Corwin Amendment in favor of continued secession is proof that the Southern states were not seceding because of slavery. But that ignores the entire, and at that time nascent, history of the United States. The abolitionist movement was not a serious threat to the institution of slavery in Southern states and no one thought that it really was immediately endangered. The larger issue was over Western expansion, control over those territories, and whether they would allow for slavery. The Mexican War was largely fought to procure these territories and it was the aim of the South to cultivate them. With slaves. If they were to be free states, then they would be, as a matter of demographics, largely cultivated by immigrants and Northerners, and some saw in this the specter of slavery's doom. And likely it would have been as slavery was inefficient and non-slave agrarian states in the West might well usurp their agrarian market share.

There is so much abundant evidence of this view (and others, directly or tangentially around the issue of slavery) that it's silly to even debate it -- it dominated politics from the Mexican War onwards. The prominent secession politicians were most vocal on this issue in their antebellum careers. Again, secession politics were less about the preservation of slavery in Southern states, rather for the expansion of it to the newly acquired territory. And the Corwin Amendment didn't give them an inch.

"Mr. President, the fierce strife we have had with the Northern States, which has led to the disruption of the Government, is a trumpet-tongued answer to this question. They have declared, by the election of Lincoln, “There shall be no more slave territory–no more slave States.” To this the Cotton States have responded by acts of secession and a Southern Confederacy; which is but a solemn declaration of these States, that they will not submit to the Northern idea of restricting slavery to its present limits, and confining it to the slave States." -S. C. Posey, Alabama Secession Convention

Excellent post.

It was about expanding slavery into the territories. The Corwin Amendment did nothing about that.

1860 was a true Fulcrum Point in American politics. Though I disdain their ugly motivations and their poor ultimate decision, I credit the Southern Slave-State Leadership for their clear-eyed understanding of what had just occurred.

They just chose the worst possible response to it.
 

Zack

First Sergeant
Joined
Aug 20, 2017
Location
Los Angeles, California
Mason expresses in the below both frustration with the dodging of the territory question and doubt as to the actual strength of the amendment to protect slavery. He also argues, in effect, that the amendment is disingenuous on the part of Northerners and that relying on it to protect slavery would be putting a lot of faith in people who have repeatedly argued for the abolition of slavery.

Throughout the entire debate there are also numerous references to how late of an hour the amendment was brought up and the failure of previous efforts namely the Crittenden Compromise.

Please note -
The Senator from Ohio is Thomas Corwin
The Senator from Illinois is Stephen Douglas
The Senator from Virginia is James Murray Mason
Other Senators do participate in the debate but I am zeroing in on the exchange between Douglas and Mason. The rest is broadly summarized.

Screen Shot 2021-07-10 at 2.07.54 PM.png
Screen Shot 2021-07-10 at 2.08.49 PM.png
Screen Shot 2021-07-10 at 2.10.15 PM.png
Screen Shot 2021-07-10 at 2.11.52 PM.png
Screen Shot 2021-07-10 at 2.12.16 PM.png
Screen Shot 2021-07-10 at 2.13.08 PM.png



Douglas then answers and the debate goes on and on.

Note: I broke it into separate images for readability only. I did not exclude any portion of Mason's argument. The debate does continue after this.
 
Last edited:

Zack

First Sergeant
Joined
Aug 20, 2017
Location
Los Angeles, California
The debate goes on - mostly in comparing the Corwin Amendment with the Crittenden Compromise - until Mason brings it back to the territorial question:
Screen Shot 2021-07-10 at 2.27.06 PM.png
Screen Shot 2021-07-10 at 2.27.26 PM.png
Screen Shot 2021-07-10 at 2.28.13 PM.png
Screen Shot 2021-07-10 at 2.28.37 PM.png
Screen Shot 2021-07-10 at 2.29.04 PM.png
Screen Shot 2021-07-10 at 2.29.26 PM.png


The debate then goes BACK to the issue of the Corwin Amendment's relation to other proposals protecting slavery.

Like I said, this goes on for PAGES AND PAGES but Mason makes it VERY clear that the Corwin Amendment did not in ANY WAY address the concerns of the Slaveholding States.

Again, I will emphasize that aside from skipping over the endless debate about whether or not the Corwin Amendment could be overturned and whether or not it was replacing other proposals, I have presented the arguments of Mr. Mason in full. I have also provided the link if anyone would like to read the parts about the Corwin Amendment's relation to other proposals.
 
Last edited:
Top