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comparison with those of other states, to the end that
amendments may be made rendering bribery and undue in-
fluence of the voter more nearly impossible and facilitating
the more rapid and accurate counting of votes.

If the legislature and he himself shall be so fortunate as to measure up to his standard of duty, his message two years hence will have joyful acceptance.

Although possessing various political beliefs we as legislators and executive should have but one great object in view-to discharge the duties incumbent upon us in a good businesslike manner for the common good of all. Each of you as a legislator has been elected as the advocate of the principles of some political party, but today you represent all the people of your district. In my capacity I shall earnestly endeavor to be the governor of all the people.




The territory of Nebraska was organized by act of congress May 30, 1854.

January 11, 1860, Nebraska passed an act to submit the question of calling a state constitutional convention which was defeated at an election March 5, 1860.

April 19, 1864, congress passed an act to enable Nebraska to submit a constitution to a vote of the people, with reference to admission as a state of the Union, and the legislature framed and submitted such an instrument, which was adopted at an election June 2, 1866. Thereupon a bill for her admission passed congress July 27, 1866, which was held by President Johnson and neither signed nor returned during the session. January 16, 1867, another bill passed and was vetoed by the president and passed over his veto on the 9th day of February, 1867.

The state constitution thus placed before congress provided for the exercise of suffrage by white male citizens only, but since emancipation had taken place and the 15th amendment was in process of adoption, an injunction was placed upon us, requiring that before admission the state legislature should agree, in behalf of the people, "that there shall be no denial of the elective franchise to any person, by reason of race or color," in the State of Nebraska. To secure this pledge, Governor Saunders convened the territorial legislature on the 20th day of February, 1867, when the fundamental condition was adopted, and President Johnson issued a proclamation March 1, 1867, declaring Nebraska a state in the Union.

There being but four days of the second session of the thirty

ninth congress remaining, the Hon. T. M. Marquett, having been elected as member of the expiring congress, took the oath of office as the first member of congress for the new state. Three days thereafter, on March 4, 1867, began the session of the fortieth congress, with Gen. J. M. Thayer and T. W. Tipton as senators, and the Hon. John Taffe member of the house of representatives.

The following extract from the senate journal explains itself:

MR. TRUMBULL: I have the pleasure of presenting to the senate the credentials of the Hon. John M. Thayer and Hon. T. W. Tipton, elected senators from the new state of Nebraska. I ask that their credentials be read and that they be sworn.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEMPORE: The senators from Nebraska will now come forward and be qualified.

The senators elect were conducted to the desk of the president pro tempore by Mr. Sumner and Mr. Chandler, and the oaths prescribed by law having been administered to Mr. Thayer and Mr. Tipton, they took their seats in the senate.

MR. TRUMBULL: lution:

I offer for adoption the following reso

Resolved, That the senate proceed to ascertain the classes in which the senators from the state of Nebraska shall be inserted in conformity with the resolution of the 14th of May, 1789, and as the constitution requires, and that the secretary put into the ballot box three papers of equal size, numbered 1, 2, 3. Each of the senators from Nebraska shall draw out one paper. The paper numbered 1, if drawn, shall entitle the senator to be placed in the class of senators whose terms of service will expire the 3rd day of March, 1869; the paper numbered 2, if drawn, shall entitle the senator to be placed in the class of senators whose terms of service will expire the 3rd day of March, 1871; and the paper numbered 3, if drawn, shall entitle the senator to be placed in the class of senators whose terms of service expire the 3d day of March, 1873.

The resolution was adopted.

Three papers were accordingly put into the ballot box; the senators advanced to the secretary's desk and each drew one paper. Mr. Thayer drew the paper numbered 2, and was placed in the class of senators whose terms will expire March 3d, 1871.

Mr. Tipton drew the paper numbered 1, and was placed in the class of senators whose terms will expire March 3d, 1869.

Now that I am a member of the senate, and propose some of my reminiscences for the amusement of the old, and instruction for the young, I shall adopt the pronoun "I," for directness and precision.

And I here pause upon the threshold and contemplate our surroundings.

I find Massachusetts represented by Charles Sumner and Henry Wilson. The former well read in the law, polished in letters, enjoying a world-famed acquaintance, and distinguished as the champion of slave emancipation. The latter, the John the Baptist of the toiling masses and adorning the shoemaker's bench with the senator's commission. While men could admire Sumner for his persistency and acquirements, they could love Wilson for his success and nobility of soul.

As chairman of the committee on foreign relations Sumner could not be equaled, and the great success of the military committee during the war of the rebellion was a feather in the cap of Henry Wilson. To the roll-call of Ohio responded Sherman and Wade, the former to direct the finance legislation, with an experience dating back to years in the house before his accession to the senate. "Old Ben Wade" seemed retiring from business, since there were no bombs to be cast into the slave-holders' camps, nor demands to be made for "rifles for two." With Trumbull, of Illinois, to preside over the judiciary committee, having as his associates Edmunds, Conkling, Hendricks, and Reverdy Johnson, the legal department approximated perfection. To the standard of Kentucky rallied James Guthrie and Garret Davis; the first-named seventy-five years of age, a flat-boat trader to New Orleans, a college student, a lawyer, fifteen years a Kentucky legislator and railroad president, and secretary of the treasury for President Pierce. Mr. Davis was in his sixtysixth year; a Kentucky gentleman of the old school, pure in life, the soul of honor, a worshiper of Henry Clay and the peculiar institution for the African's good and the safety of the AngloSaxon. If a stranger in the gallery asked an Indianian to point out the greatest man in the senate, the reply would be, if from a democrat, "Tom Hendricks, of course"; while the republican

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retorted, "When you muster your war governors we enter Oliver P. Morton." Rhode Island was represented by William Sprague and Henry B. Anthony; the former a governor at 30 years of age, a senator at 32, and subsequently known as the husband of Miss Kate Chase.

The newer states were represented by comparatively new men, including reconstructed Tennessee. Among them Nye of Nevada was the general champion, the amusing orator, the bishop in Biblical quotations, and amidst the clinking of glasses, the festive inspirer. But as my intention is not to furnish a biography of the senate, I must pass over many of the fifty-four senators, equally worthy of mention, for during the war the states were admonished to place only on guard "the tried and the true."

Never was a body of men better acquainted with a system of legislation, for under their scrutiny and moulding influences the legal superstructure had arisen.

The war just ended had demanded a new currency and a system of revenue, and "war legislation" and constitutional modifications, and centralization of power and the fostering of the dominant political party by congressional enactments. Of the fifty-four senators seven had been elected as democrats and forty-seven as republicans; but of the latter many had been before the war democrats on the subjects of tariffs, and the construction of the constitution, and others had been whigs, agreeing with them as to the true doctrines of state rights. It was evident, therefore, that as soon as the government should be prepared to return to a peace basis again, unless the return was unanimously conceded, some republican methods would be repudiated and old cherished doctrines revived and made prominent. This defection had already commenced, and Dixon of Connecticut, Norton of Minnesota, and Doolittle of Wisconsin, were frequently joined with the opposition.

But the most conspicuous opponent of radical republicanism, during the fortieth congress and subsequently, was Andrew Johnson, president of the United States. Mr. Johnson had been a lifelong democrat, a devoted union man, of a very combative

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