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which resulted in the triumph of the Northern party. The extinction of Slavery was now apparently but a question of time, the hostility to it in the North becoming so out-spoken and averse to Compromises acceptable to the South, that they began to look forward to separation, which they endeavored to accomplish from 1860–5. A civil war, such as only Americans could wage, was carried on during these years. The resolution, bravery, and military talents of either side were never excelled; but the resources of the North seemed inexhaustible. Her numbers, activity, and the inventive genius of her skilled artisans gave her an immense superiority. This war is a cause at once of pride and grief to every true American. In the contest Slavery, the cause of it, disappeared, the Constitution was amended, and the necessity of Compromises on this question forever ceased.



1. This is an offense aiming at the existence of the govern. ment; and in all other governments it has ever been customary to punish it with extreme severity. Many things are considered to be of the nature of treason, and, as such, severely punished in most countries. The Constitution defines treason to be "levying war against the United States, or adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort;" so that the highest or capital crime alone may be pursued with its penalties. This is another evidence of the extreme moderation of the founders of the government, which we have had occasion to notice so often in our examination.

2. An act of Congress passed April 30th, 1790, defines it in the same sense and orders that the convicted offender shall be hung.

By another act passed 17th July, 1862, it was made discretionary with the court trying the case to put the offender to

death, or to imprison him for not less than five years, and to fine him for a sum not less than ten thousand dollars. The penalty for this crime, even in its mildest form, is very severe; thus showing how atrocious this offense is considered.

3. None but a person owing allegiance to the United States can commit treason against them. The same acts which would be treason in a citizen would not be treason if perpetrated by a foreigner.

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Misprision of treason" is the concealment of it by a person who knows it has been committed. This also is a grave offense, and is punishable by a seven years' imprisonment, and a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars.

4. Any person tried for treason, must be indicted by a grand jury, and tried by a petit jury in the Circuit Court of the United States within three years after the crime has been committed; otherwise it is barred by limitation—or, in other words, outlawed.



1. Geography proper describes the general character of a country, as its rivers, bays, gulfs, plains, mountains and natural divisions. Leaving this to other works we confine ourselves to those divisions made by the government for convenience in administering its affairs.

Formerly there was a separation into North and South, by "Mason and Dixon's Line," between which there existed a marked difference of governmental, social, and industrial policy. The States south of that line might hold slaves, while in those north of it that institution was illegal. That difference was abolished by the thirteenth amendment to the Constitution, as a result of the Civil War. The next largest-and these exist now-are those made by the

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2. These often comprise several States and are changed, by act of Congress, when the convenience of the Associate Judges of the Supreme Court, who preside over them requires it. The next largest political divisions are


3. These exercise sovereign powers in all matters where control has not been expressly delegated by the Constitution to the National Congress. The other political boundaries are ever liable to change, to meet the requirements of changing circumstances. These are definitely fixed, any change being very rare and unlikely after they are duly organized and admitted into the Union as States. Each of the original thirteen colonies became States, with the boundaries they had as colonies at the time of the Revolutionary War. The others received such boundaries as suited the convenience and wishes of the people when they were admitted. Their object is to prevent the centralization of too much power in the general government, and to render legislation on local affairs and interests more convenient, and more satisfactory to the people of each State. The State having the least number of inhabitants numbers between 40,000 and 50,000; the one having the largest number contains between 4,000,000 and 5,000,000. The number of the States determines the number of Senators in Congress, two being allotted to each; so that a State may be considered as a Senatorial District.



4. Produce another class of political divisions. attend to legal differences involving the laws of the general government, but of a secondary class. They are more numerous than the Circuit Courts. In some States there is but one, and some have several, according to size and population.



5. Another class of districts has been formed, for the pose of collecting the duties on imported goods. These are

called "collection districts." They extend along, and embrace the whole sea coast and the shores of navigable lakes and rivers. In a few instances they are located inland, at points where goods may be brought into the United States by land. Each collection district has a port of entry, and very often several ports of delivery; also a collector of customs, and generally a custom house.

6. Another class of collection districts was formed during the late civil war. They grew out of the war, and were established for the collection of the tax termed the "internal revenue," which had to be levied to pay the war expenses. These districts differ entirely, both in their objects and in the territory embraced within them, from those established for the purpose of collecting duties on imports, and correspond as far as practicable with the Congressional districts in each State.


7. Land districts may also be noticed among these divisions. In every State and Territory where there are public lands for sale, after they are surveyed and mapped, they are divided into districts-two, three or four, in each State and Territory-as convenience and economy may dictate. In each district a land office is established for the sale of the lands in said district.


8. Again, the whole of our sea coasts, both on the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, together with the shores of the navigable lakes and rivers, are divided into twelve light house districts (or their number must not exceed that,) for the purpose of building, repairing, illuminating and superintending the light houses on all the coasts and shores wherever located. These are the principal divisions we have to notice. It is important to have a knowledge of them, for with such knowledge we can better understand how government affairs are conducted.




Washington's army had lain in camp at Newburg, N. Y., since the surrender of Cornwallis. The Preliminary treaty of peace was signed Jan. 20th, at Paris; but it was not officially announced in the camp at Newburg, until April 19th; just eight years from the Battle of Lexington that commenced it!

July, Congress prepared to disband the army, and Washington to resign his commission as Commander-in-Chief.

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21-The great difficulty Congress had to contend with was raising money to pay the troops. Congress had no authority, under the Confederation, to lay taxes or impose duties. It exhausted its own credit in the issue of paper money which soon became of little value. It made some foreign loans, and persuaded the States, which alone could lay taxes, to raise a small sum. But this did not suffice to pay the army at last. There was much suffering and discontent.

On this day a body of soldiers, in large part new recruits, who had comparatively little to complain of, without muskets, but wearing side arms, beset the doors of Congress in Philadelphia, for three hours. No violence was offered. Congress adjourned to Princeton, N. J.

Sept. 3-The final and definite Treaty of Peace between England, France, and the United States, in which the independence of the latter was acknowledged, its boundaries defined, and various matters of interest arranged to the profit of the United States, was signed at Paris.

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Nov. 2-A proclamation is issued by Congress for disbanding the army. 25-The British troops evacuate New York, and it is occupied by American troops under Gen. Knox.

Dec. 4-Long Island and Staten Island abandoned by the British. Washington takes leave of his officers, at New York.


25-He resigns his commission to Congress, in a public audience, given him at Annapolis, Md., where Congress was then sitting, and goes home to Mt. Vernon.

Cæsar Rodney, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, died this year.


The want of public credit was very much felt. There was no authority sufficient to raise money to meet the interest, even, on the debt; and this produced great distress.

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