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The reflector. (Milledgeville, Ga.) 1817-1819, November 12, 1817, Image 1

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i fvfi THE REFLECTOR .L-'' ML. f. MILLEDGEVILLE, G. WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER is, 18ir. J.fc.HtneS: £cUtc+* NO. i. FORENSIC. VBOW TBS SOUTBKIUf lATlUOT. "l.o following ipeach delivered in Charleston, by WIL- |\M CRAFTS, Esquire, acting in- the prosecution the Attorney-General, fully explains the nefarious inunction lately brought to light by the vigilance of the ity Council. We deem no other introduction to Us pub- sxtilSn necessary than to state that a copy of it was Ob- 1,ed from the speaker to meet the wishes of several au' (tors, who united in the opinion that It was one of the V'eot efforts of the advocate, and • favorable specimen the eloquence of bur bar- 1 7ie Staff vs. M. Greenwood.—Assault and batte ry and false imprisonment of Robertson, a free vuin of color. llo not think, gentlemen of the jury, that be- fctusc 1 appear on the aide of the prosecution I "(> not still act on the defensive. I defend not solitary individual—but the rights of your peo ple. and the character of our city. I defend the luthority of your laws—weeping humanity and ifflictetf justice. Listen to me, while in a .cool ind uninipassioned narrative ( develope the trail- ■action, which is the subject of this enquiry— 1 shall state it to you simply, as it occurred, with- mt any attempt to exaggerate its enormity, al though”, had I any pretensions to eloquence, I have now a theme, on which 1 could rouse you Ijnto indignation and melt you into tears. Ima- jgine that you hear the recital of his wrAn from [the miserable sufferer himself. A poor and iguo- [Ta<it mariner, of that- degraded class which we (cf.il “ persons of colour,” sought to raise himself f cn the moral scale, by serving his country in the h mr of peril. At the commencement of the, late tr with Great Britain, he enlisted on board of Lone of tM vessels of our little navy—small in [numbersbut great in renown—our navy that has covered this country with the mantle of its own glory, and shed the lustre of our stars o- ver the habitablegiobe. For 1 the space of four years through the summer sun-and the winter blast, he fearlessly exposed,hfe life' and faithfully perform ed his duty, until the* w^r being terminated, lie received an honorable discharge from his com manding officer. He retired, not to repose on laurels, qr feast on public applause—but to en joy in humble obscurity, the -pleasures of domes tic life, and to spend with a sailor’s generosity a vaiiur’s earnings. Domestic pleasures are the itroiigest and tile only ties which persons of his lescnption feel. No civil rights, no political irivileges confer an additional value on their lives —no literary pleasure—no scientific toils—no am litious schemesiliverttheir fancy or employ their time. All their pursuits are obscure—all their |oys are humble. To such pleasures and pur suits the mariner returns—and surely, he who hag defended the country abroad, deserves to Cm? in it. a refuge and a home. Ha -who has WirquraUuO tin. r —-f ii.v ocean, nmy ejpwi security on the land. But alas! His slender earnings are not too small for the grasp of avarice —the scythe of oppression stoops to destroy the lowly harvest of his hopes—and although he has eluded the monsters of the sea, the shore is man ned with Cornish plunderers. There are sharks on th •- land to devour him and pilot fishes to de coy their prey., _ His stout and athletic form marks him as prmtRblc acquisition to the villain ous conspiracy, who sell your freedom to the western slave dealers, and the accidental loss or destruction of his certificate of freedom renders the unfortunate man a safer victim. In a mo ment of hilarity, perhaps intoxication: ^uan hourof daikness, when there arc no witnesses to vindi cate or rescue him ; perhaps ft-om the couA of re pose, made welcome by a day of toil, he is torn by the defendant, who, in the shape of a consta ble. and with a warrant from a justice of the quo rum, framed for the very puapose, and founded solely in fraud, charges him with an offence whVli he never committed, and carries him finally to the public jail.—Confinement to any man is irk some—to an innocent man is iutolerable—to an ignorant man is terrific. Here, in the society of criminal*—where all around him is awful—his imagination is worked upon by the minister of justice, who pourtrays to him the severity of the laws—the heinousness of the offence alledgcd a- gainst him—the impossibility of his escape from punishment—the terrors oif perpetual imprison ment or ignominious death. And while under the influence of this intolerable alarm—he propo ses one remedy, by which all these evils may be averted and the unhappy wretch may be restored to liberty. Tliere is says he,“a very good and generous man in. this city who in pity of your misfortr pcs, will pay your jail fees and stop the proseCu ion,ifyou will consent to serve him three or four years. He is a friend of mine, and this proposal proceeds entirely from my friendship tor you.” Oh sacred nair/of friendship! how art thou polluted.—With tnc smile of friendship Judas betrayed our Saviour—and so it is always xvith these moral assassins, that they cloak their crimes under the semblance and ronsanguinty ot some illustrious virtue. The destitute mariner, whose habits cannot endure confinement—whose ceiling used to be the sky, & hiswall the verge of ocean, unseen &,unacccssible—whose service in his country’s cause, has rendered liberty doubly dear —deceived by the arts, or allured by promises, or intimidated by the threats of this manstealer, miscalled a Minister of justice, consents to his Proposal, and with a confidence above suspicion, nails him as his deliverer. All the charges which ad been conjured up against him vanish imme- ‘ lately into air, the duon. of his prison are open- e V» " B " *he jailor in compliance with the orders «'i the justice, surrenders the willing victim to this most righteous constable. The house pf the Justice of the Peace, is selected as the scene of the conspiracy—-not his office—lest the affair should gain publicity.—Here the articles of in denture are drawn rod signed, and an able bod- ieJ seaman, who in the American navy receives twelve dollars a month, agrees to serve Four years for less than fifty dollars a year. The pro secution is at an end—and an inextricable net nisn n \m is c ions i flic'fi is thrown over the liberties of this miserable man. Inextricable—fur least his real name should fur nish the means of future discovery and rcseue— is directed to sign the indenture with a ficti- one. A trifling advance of money beguiles 'first hours of tlds Inferno, servitude—and before he awakes from the trance of delight, and the stupor of intoxication, which is forced upon him—he is sold for life to a Kentucky salve deal er, and sent in chains from this very metropolis. His humane master divides eighty dollars among his worthy associates, twenty of which arc ac knowledged to have been received by the defen dant, the constable, and a portion, the amount of which is uncertain, was given to the magis trate. This is a real picture—no portrait of the imagination. Twice it has been proved to have occurred to the disgrace of this city. God knows how often it may have happened, but there is too much reason for the belief, that several of the gal lant seamen, whom peace restored to this country, changed a temporary imprisonmentin England for perpetual slavery in America. Oh, what a reward tor an intrepid sailor, who on the mountain billows has fought the enemies of his country, to be doomed to servitude in her mountain forests!— Disfranchised of the very rights which we con tribute to preserve for others ! Transferred from tire blaze of battle and the pride of victory •to the drudgery and the disgrace, and the suf fering of a slave ! And Ibis too in this land of Liberty—this Republic, boasting of its free in stitutions and formed to assert the rights of man. —It was to have been hoped that the garb which he wore, would have protected him from injury. The frankness of a sailor should shield him from duplicitv, an J his benevolence from fraud. The dress of the American sailors is 3acred in the eye of the Patriot. Oh it is cruel to dupe the unsus picinus—it is base to ensnare t|ie ignonant—it is iniamoustooppress the brave. You have heard the crime—now listen to the criminal : This, it is nlledged was a judicial proceeding. The ina gistrategranted his warrant upon a regular affida vit, and the constable was authorized and coin pelled to execute it. It is because of the form alitics used to sanction and conceal this outrage ou humanity, that it becomes the subject cf deep er reprehension. It is because of the time, the p!ac< and the parties concerned in it—that pub lie indignation pants for their punishment it on her own altar that justice is to be violated ? Are her chosen ministers to pollute her shrine where they are sworn to worship ? Is the robe of the priest to conceal the dagger of the assas sin ? IIow does it aggravate the enormity of the offence, the circumstance of its being perpe trated in the.name of justice! Oh, gentlemen, •you are little aware of the abuses of office which taka |Unrft WllO 11,1 - ,jf y—— -—ghtiyttfa Even now, accidentally, ihy eye lights upon a lit tle boy—whom in tears I met, and with tears l rescued from a conspiracy like this. He was an English sailor boy without friends or sustenance —he too was arrested by a constable, upon a false allegation, and while another personated his guardian, the magistrate indented him to the first, who employed him in the most menial and degrading offices—which it would distress me to name. What think you he was indented to learn “ the art and mystery of a constable.”—Tremen dous art! Infernal mystery ! Worthy only of satan and his imps. And it is the official act of a magistrate, so ignorant, or so perverse as to be capable ol a proceeding like this, that you are required to support and which the defend ant relics on to exonerate him, and that too in spite of his own confesioA, which the testimony of the magistrate opposes in vain ; the magistrate informs us that the warrant issued on the affida- vit of a negro woman, incapable by our laws of giving evidence by oath, stating that the sea man who was arrested had violently assaulted her. That the affair being compromised he dis charged the prisoner, and the order to the jailor is produced. Now if the charge on which he is sued the warrant was notoriously false—how could he protect himself better than by attribut ing it to a negro woman, who can never confront him. When we ask for the affidavit—it is lost or torn urf as was his custom. If its destruction was acciuental, it was extremely convenient—it proves to be an order to deliver the prisoner into the custody of the defendant. The memory of the ynagistrafe fails him in several particulars but of one^thing he is certain—that in drawing the indentures—(where the certificate of a ma gistrate is required by law) he did notact in his official ca tacity,but assumed his individual char acter. lie acknowledges that he wa3 paid for it. Why lie should on this occasion throw off his robe of office, I leave you gentlemen, to de termine. Was it to receive more or less com pensation .than the law or usage allows him to demand ? He states that he cautioned the un fortunate negro of the consequences of his con tract—but that he persisted in having himself in dented. As if it were possible for a mail not-un der duress to consent to an ageemeut to serve four years at the rate of one third of the wages he was accustomed and entitled to receive. '1 he magistrate, let it be remembered, i9 implicated in this transaction, and his evidence should be cautiously received. He has given it cautiously. And has confirmed the confession of'the accused in every respect where he could do so without criminating himself. He will not say—that the charge was fictitious, on which he issued the war rant. To have acknowledged this would have been too great a sacrifice; great as is his anxiety to protect his constable; close as is the connexion between them, it is nut strong enough to renew tlie picture of Niaus & Curyalus expiring together, but allowing that the testimony of the magis trate had entirely opposed the confession of the accused, the latter must prevail. The volunta ry confession of a prisoner is the highest evidence against him. ft is tribute to .offended justice.— All other'modes of ascertaining truth afford on ly a twinkling lustre. This is like throwing the beams of the sun into the'recesses of a cavern. The lights with which we groped after truth become instantly useless and unnecessary—the process of i.uve^tmntion ceases—the Court and the Jury are at mice satiSlted—and the culprit, arrested in the blaze of his own evidence, pledges his ve racity for Ins guilt—becomes the victim of his own discovery, and reads his sentence in the lan guage of inspiration : “Out of thine own mouth will I condemivthee.”—He kindles the fires that envelope and consume him. But it is asked, wherfore this voluntary confession ? Why reveal what was so easy of concealment, & so dangerous if discovered : Thank Heaven, the detection docs not always depend on the adroitness of its pur suers. There is a time when cunning forsakes the vigilant, and remorse softens the obdurate— when the boldest tremble, and the wicked flee from, the phantoms of their own imagination.— There is a time when conscience, darting her beams, through the bosoms of the criminal, dis closes the moral shipwreck, and lights the dis mal ruin. When chased through all labyrinths, and hunted to its last recess, guilt mistakes the means of escape, and agitated by dangers mag nified by terror, throws itself in desperate fury into^the arms of its followers. Here then we have tjie defendant, arrived at the close and the consequences of his career. If you believe him, he is gniity. The unhappy negro has disappear ed. The defendant acknowledges that he kid napped him ; it is proved he has been sent into tfie con i y ; there is no doubt that he was sold as a slave. The confession was tirade under the idea that the crime could not be punished by the laws of this State. Shame on our statute books, there is too much reason for the belief ! It would have been generous to steal a slave—for one state of vassalage is kindred to another. It would have been courageous to steal a slave, for the law protects such property with its shield and spear. But for swindling a freeman, of his liberties; for stealing an American citizen and all his boasted rights and privileges—there is no other penalty than attaches to assault, and bat tery, and false imprisonment. Ithas been taun tingly said, where is the prosecutor ? Why this clamour and judicial process in behalf of an in dividual who does not appear to assert his wrongs and sue for justice ? We might retort the ques tion, and might harrow up the feelings oP the defendant, if Tie be not insensibl%by asking him where is the miserable man ? By all the ties of domestic life, thus cruelly lacerated and torn asunder—in behalf of insulted patriotism and violated liberty, I would invoke him to discover ami restore hiitn. If he cannot be released, he shall at least be avenged. The odium incurred *-r .c*bni shall bo removed, if possible, by its punishment. Ana yer nnwiLi change the pleasure of seeing that man free, for the miserable pleasure of seeing that man punish ed. Where is he ? Alas, gentlemen, we know not, but wherever lip is we know that he is a slave, and we can imagine his sufferings. Hi: spirit broken—his heart desolate ; the sun as it uses from the eastern ocean reminds him of the scene of his funner perils and delights. And as it sets in the western forests, leaves him far from his kindred and his home, among the shadows of darkness and slavery. Would that my voice could reach and inform him, that, at this moment, his oppressors are brought to light. Would that I could paint on the dark and distant horizon of his hopes, the delightful prospect of approaching liberty. Alas ! I can only supplicate the Almigh ty, that a3 in his justice he is about to punish the criminal, so in his mercy it would please him to liberate the captive. The jury found the prisoner guilty. STATE LEGISLATURE. MEMBERS OF Tllfc LEGISLATE RE. Baldwin, John Mathews, S; Charles William son and Francis Smith, 11. Bullock, Samuel Lockhart, 9;'John Burnett, R Burke, Eli Emanuel, .9 ; Jonathan Lewis, John Whitehead mid Philip >Sapp, 72. Brylin, John Vanbrackel, 9; Camden, John Hardee,A'; Hugh Brown anil David G. Jones, 72. U- - Chatham, Alfred Cutfibert, S; Edward liar- den and G. W. Owens (F. S. Fell absent,) R. Clarke, Thomas Mitchell, S ; Thomas Moore, White Rosseterand Thomas R. Mitchell, 72. Coltimhin, John Foster 9 ; Win. B. Tankers* ley, Bjllingtoii M. Sanders and Archibald Averv. Emanuel. Stephen Swain, A; John Roberts, R. Effingham, Goldwirc A; C. H. Dasher, 11. ilbert, Wiley Thompson, 9; Beverly Allen and John Ashley, R. Franklin, Benj. Cleveland, &; Fleming F. A- drian, John Bush and James Blair, 11. Glynn, Sam’l Piles, S; James C. /vlanghain, 72. Greene, Oliver Porter, S; Thomas Stocks, Ro bert Rea and Thomas J. Moore, *# • Hancock, Lppes Brown, 8; John Abercrombie, Henry Trippe and Ed. B. Brooking, 72. Jackson, Hugh Montgomery 8 : James Coch ran, David Witt and Geo. Reid, 72. Jasper, Jarre! Beasley, S; Henry Walker, A- sa Ragan and John Robinson, 72. . Jefferson, Rob’t Fleming, 8; Wm. H. Jack- son and Ebenezer Both well, R. Jones, Jesse M. Pope,'S ; Abner Wimberly, John Bayne and Thomas White, 72. Laurens, David Hlacksheur, 8; L. C. Pitts, 72. Lincoln, Micajah lienly, 9$ John Fleming and John Lamkin, R. , Madison, Samuel Groves, 8; James Ware. R. M'lntosh, Allen II. Powell,.SI; Wm. It. M’ln- tosh and John L. Hopkins, 72. J font gome riff N. B. Mitchell, >9; B. C. Cray,72. Morgan, Thomas Hog", 8 s Charles Keniion, Charles -llattliews and Lewis Bandy, 72. Oglethorpe, Geo. Hudspeth, 8-, Bur well Pope, John Townsend and Henry Blake, 11. 7V«sA'i,Th. W. Harris, 9; Wm. Huthron, 72. Putnam, Simon Holt, 8 ; Benjamin Williams, Irbv Hudson and Henry Branham, //. Richmond, Valentine Walker, S’, Geo. Walton and Thomas Glascock, 72. Striven, James Blackman, 9: Tho. Cauldinz and Roger .V’Kinnie, 72. * Tatnall,}. P. Blackman, .9; John Mattox, R. Telfair, John M'Griffin, S ; John Fletcher! R. "Twiggs, Ezekiel Wimberly, .9; Roger Law son and Win. Ctncker, R. Warren, Dennis L. Ryan, 8; Thomas Wil liams, Benjamin Sandiforrf and Edwin Baker, 72.- Washington. Jared Irwin, 9; John Moore, Sa muel Robinson and Tilman S. Dixon, It. WmggS-Wm. 8. Knight, 9; Pliny ShofficU. R. Alexander Pope and Thomas Wingfield, #.'* ° n ‘ Wilkinson, John Ilatchcr, 9; John T. Fair- child, 72. “ Winchester, (Ky.) Sep. 20—I witnessed in this place, yesterday, one of the most interested trials that has ever come under iny notice— circumstances ami issue of which, are not only important to the pat ties concerned, but to society, it was a suit for the breach of a marriage contract, brought by Rachel Patton, of Paris, agaiust John L. Martin, of the same place, and removed to this court by change of venue. As the circumstances were somewhat peculiar, besides the usual inte rest which would naturally be excited by such a case, novel as it is in the jurisprudence of this country, a large number of citizens collected to hear t!ie evidence and discussion. The engage- ment.between the parties was clearly proven to have existed some years previous to the unfortu* jiate affair which finally induced the defendant to withdraw his addresses, and refuse to comply with his contract, and which overwhelmed the plaintiff'with shame and misery. The defendant attempted to justify his non-compliance, by throwing the guilt of the transaction upon the brother-in-law of the plaintiff. It appeared, how ever, that for nine months previous to the unfor tunate occurrence, this gentleman did not visit the house of John Patton, more than two or three times, owing to a misunderstanding subsisting between him and Miss Patton, from the circum stance of his having cautioned*her against Mar tin. Every step talien by the defendant, altho’ ably supported by his counsel, seemed to murk the transaction with a deeper die of deception. Thebrother-in-law of the plaintiff was fully er- culpated of the charges brought against him ; and ruucli sympathy was excited in lieiialf of tlie plain tiff, whose character previously, was pioaren many witnesses to have been of the fairest kind : who had been raised by exemplary and pious pa tents, and bad moved in the first circles. Mr. Bled soe concluded the case on the part of the plaintiff, in an eloquent and appropriate address to t^e jury, in which every feeling of honour and huiiiuiity was roused.” ” . Verdict, three thousand dollars damages. * HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES. Tuesday, JYovember 4, 1817. On motion of Mr. Walton, Mr. A..Pope was nominated Chairman. The House then proceed ed to the election of a Speaker; and the ballot being received and examined, it appeared that Benjamin Williams, Esq. of Putnam county, wa^ duly elected ; whereupon he was conducted to the ' Chair—whence lie made his acknowledgements. William Turner, Esq. of Putnam county, was appointed Clerk. Gilbert Brooks, Messenger. Cornelius M’Party, Door-Keeper. On motion of Mr. A. Pope, Resolved, That the Rules of the House at its latt session, be adopted for its regulation during the present session. The House concurred in the resolution receiv* ed from the Senate, appointing a committee to wait on the Executive, and inform him that the General Assembly are now organized, and ready to receive any communication that he may lay be* j. fore them; and added as a committee on their part, Messrs. A. Pope, E Harden, Stokes, Blajr, and Branham. Mr. E. Harden laid on the table a resolution relative to the appointment of the Standing Com mittees. Mr. A. Pope, from the joint committee appoin ted topwait on the Executive, Rapqrted, that they had performed the duty assigned them, and re ceived for answer, that the Executive would lay his communication before the Legislature, this day at 12 o’clock. I’lie following communications were brought from the President of Senate, exercising ex- ? ecutive powers of government, by Mr. Wood, his Secretary: Fellow-Citizens of the Senate, and of the House of Representatives. Being appointed by the President of the Uni ted States, Agent tdr Indian Affairs for the Creek Nation, - and having determined to accept the same, I havfe this day resigned the Exetuth e Go vernment of the Shite to the Honourable W illi am Rabun, President of the Seriate. In doing « hitu, permit me to assure you, and thro’ you to my fel low-citizens generaliy, that in retiring from the service of the state, I shall carry with me a just sense of the obligation which their long continued confidence has luid me under, and that my grati tude will be as lasting as my lile.^. In the vari ous and complicated duties, which in the courso of my public life I have been call -d on to .pet- form, I cannot flatter myself, thut my aoi.uuct laas been exempt from error, but my conscience acquits me of any intentional departure fl out du ty. Devoted ak 1 have been to the service of .the state, and still ardently desiriug to see her pros* perous and happy, it is a reflection which givs# me much pleasure, that the duties of the appoiot.- m r*jj&