slavery. I have done so: I gave it a full and fair investigation years ago—I swore in my youth that my hands should never be bound, nor my feet fettered, nor my tongue palsied—I am the friend of liberty, universal liberty, both civil and reli gious. I ever detested servile bondage. I wish to see the shackles fall from the feet of the oppressed, and the chains of slavery broken. I hate the oppressor’s grasp, and the tyrant’s rod; against them I set my brows like brass, and my face like steel; and my arm is nerved for the conflict. Let the sons of thunder speak, achieve victories before the cannon’s mouth, and beard the lyon in his den: till then the cry of the oppressed will not be heard: ‘till then the wicked will not cease to trouble, nor the weary bondman be at rest.’ Great God, has it come to this— that the free citizens of the sovereign State of can be taken and immur ed within the walls of a peniten tiary for twelve long years, for such a crime as God would regard as a virtue! simply for pointing bondmen to a state of liberty and law! and no man take it to heart? Never! no, never!! NO, NEVER!!! Let the friends of freedom arise and utter their voice, like the voice of ten thousand thunders—let them take every constitu tional means to procure a redress of griev ances—let there be a concerted effort, and the victory is ours. Let the broad banners of freedom be unfurled, and soon the prison doors will be opened, the cap tive set at liberty, and the oppressed go free. will then remember the unoffending Mormons in the days of their captivity and bondage—when murder and rapine were here darling attributes—why, my heart is filled with indignation, and my blood boils within me, when I contem plate the vast injustice and cruelty which has meted out to that great phi lanthropist and devout Christian, General Joseph Smith, and his honest and faithful adherents—the Latter Day Saints, or Mormons: but the time has passed, and God will avenge their wrongs in his own good time. Dr. Dyer, put your hand up on your heart, and remember Zion. Just investigate the wrongs which our people have suffered in their unprecedented pri vations, the confiscation of their property, and the murder of their friends—the per secutions of the Waldenses in former ages were not to be compared to it, and history affords not a parallel. Now let us make a strong, concerted, and vigorous effort, for universal liberty, to every soul of man—civil, religious, and political. With high considerations of respect, and esteem, suffer me to subscribe myself—
Charles V. Dyer, M. D.
P. S. Gen. Smith informs me that there are white slaves in , (Mormons,) in as abject servitude as the blacks, and we have, as yet, no means of reddress!— God grant that the day of righteous retri bution may not be procrastinated.
Editor’s Office, , Ill.,
March 7th, 1842.
Respected Brother:—I have just been perusing your correspondence with Doctor [Charles V.] Dyer on the subject of American Slavery, and the students of the Mission Institute, and it makes my blood boil within me to reflect upon the injus tice, cruelty, and oppression, of the rulers of the people—when will these things cease to be, and the Constitution and the Laws again bear rule? I fear for my be loved country—mob violence, injustice, and cruelty, appear to be the darling at tributes of , and no man taketh it to heart! O, tempora! O, mores! What think you should be done?
Mayor’s Office, City of ,
March 8th, A. D. 1842.
of the 7th Inst. has been
received, and I proceed to reply, with
out undue emotion, or perturbation. You
ask “When will these things cease to be,
and the Constitution and the Laws again
bear rule?” I reply—once that noble
bird of Jove, our grand national emblem,
soared aloft, bearing in her proud beak
the words “Liberty and Law
,” and that
man that had the temerity to ruffle her
feathers was made to feel the power of
her talons; but a wily archer came, and
with his venomed arrow dipped in Upas’
richest sap, shot the flowing label from
the Eagle’s bill—it fell inverted, and the
bird was sick, and is,—the label soon was
trampled in the dust—the eagle bound
and caged. The picture is now before
you in bold relief. “What think you
should be done?” The master spirits of
the age must rise and break the cage, re [p. 724]