July 16, 1863, The
“Spirit of the German Press.”
The Westliche Post is out with a violent attack on Provost-Marshal Broadhead, General Schofield, and the President of the United States. We give it in full.
MISSOURI AS HUNTING-GROUND FOR NEGRO-CATCHERS.
Our Jail, under the administration of General Schofield and Provost-Marshal Broadhead, has become a real; "slave-pen? Every day blacks and colored people of all shades--men, women, and children--are thrown into it, who had believed in the gospel of liberty proclaimed by "honest"--it is too great a shame that this word must now be written with quotation marks--by honest Father Abraham. This honest man has made Missouri a real hunting-ground for nigger-catchers, and the authorities appointed by him protect this "honest" calling in every possible way. If we say the jail has become a slave-pen, we don't mean to censure the jailer. He is bound to receive the slaves that are arrested by order of the provost-marshal and brought to jail; he is bound to do it as his duty, and we are sure it is a disagreeable duty to him. But who has given our Provost-Marshal-General Broadhead authority to recall and declare null and void the free papers which have been given by his predecessors or by former commanders of this department to the slaves of rebel masters? Does a slave become a free man by a certificate of liberty, duly made out by competent authority, or is such a certificate of liberty a mere piece of paper, which may be torn up at pleasure? Is the great liberty proclamation of the President himself also a mere rag, which every provost-marshal may spit upon and kick with his feet, if he so chooses? Every day fugitive slaves from all quarters of the rebellious States are arrested in our streets by professional rascals and dragged to jail. The process of such an outrage is a very- simple one. Any rebel from Missouri, Arkansas, Tennessee, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, or any other slave State sells his human property to a dealer in men's flesh, who is, of course, a "loyal" man, Just as Mr. Lincoln is an "honest man, and this slave-trader puts immediately his blood-hounds on the track of the scented game, which is then surely fated, for the provost-marshal-general never neglects to play his rôle. Thus, in the past month hundreds of liberated slaves have been carried back into slavery; thus, yesterday, six of them sat in the jail waiting for the next boat to Kentucky, and thus things will continue as long as Schofield and Broadhead are at the head of affairs, and probably as long as "honest Old Abe" sits in the White House. We spoke to an old soldier of the Twelfth Regiment, who had carried a musket in the service of liberty since the commencement of the war, and we heard him say, "May my right hand wither before it ever again throws a ticket for Abraham Lincoln into the ballot-box and may my lips be struck dumb if ever I pronounce that name otherwise than with contempt!" A negro who has gone through all the toils of the Twelfth Regiment for two years is now a fugitive slave in the jail, caught on Lincoln's slave-hunting ground in Missouri.
To such a pass has a weak-brained and weak-spirited Republican administration brought affairs in Missouri that it has incurred the hatred and the disgust of all true Union men, of all true emancipationists, and of all those who are honestly in favor of liberty; while upon its head descend the blessings and the praises of those who stigmatized the conquerors of Camp Jackson as murderers and the author of the emancipation proclamation as an Abolitionist. Be it so. Italia far a da so. We will help ourselves.
visits since 02/04/2004
page revised 05/25/2006