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Page:Oregon Historical Quarterly volume 12.djvu/154

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146 W. C. WOODWARD people and upon what they were based. These are largely to be found and reflected in the newspaper press of the Territory. From observations at Salem in his capacity as legislator dur- ing the session of '56-'57, Dryer avowed at the end of the ses- sion that the leaders, office holders and office-hunters had been busily preparing all winter, with ever-increasing boldness, to force slavery into Oregon ; that several of the prominent leaders had openly declared that the Democratic party in Oregon was in favor of the introduction of slavery. 1 A little later he de- clared it to be an undeniable fact that nine-tenths of the Terri- torial office holders could be counted upon to exert their whole official influence in favor of slavery ; that they were busily en- gaged in "whipping in" those who disagreed with them by branding them as Abolitionists and Black Republicans. 2 In an editorial "Foreshadowing Events Lane and Deady " Dryer cited : Lane's actions in the Sumner-Brooks affair, and his re- cent importation from the East of a man named Hibben to edit the Portland Times as a pro-slavery organ ; the public ad- vocacy, by Judge Deady, one of the most prominent, gifted and popular Democrats in Oregon, of the introduction of slavery ; the establishment of new journals in the Territory for the pur- pose of defending "that beneficent institution." 3 In August he told of the determined and aggressive canvass being made to win over to the cause of slavery the delegates to the Constitu- tional Convention. He declared that while during the campaign there was not a single newspaper that dared advocate slavery, there were now at least five of the eight in the Territory that directly or indirectly favored that institution. 4 But the more open and pronounced became the contest, the better it suited lOregonian, February 7, 1857. 2lbid., March 21. 3lbid., June 20. 4The eight papers Oregonian, Argus, Standard, Pacific Christian Advocate, Statesman, Times, Table Rock Sentinel and the Occidental Messenger. The last four were certainly included in the five referred to. The Standard, while Democratic, opposed slavery. Rev. Thos. H. Pearne, editor of the Pacific Chris- tian Advocate, a Methodist organ, shut his eyes and said there was no slavery issue in Oregon.