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and models to be followed. Liberty of conscience and
religious worship. The future of the republic. Pro-
posed isthmian congress. Insinuations of Molien.
European recognition. A Peruvian question. Restor-
ing deserters from vessels. Commercial agent Lowry.
Free ships and free goods. Information on Colombia
wanted. Rule of guidance.

Comparison between American and European insti-

tutions. Superiority in political science and morality.
Prospects of change in Europe. Peace desired.

June 24. To RICHARD RUSH

Abolition of the slave-trade as piracy. Action of

Congress. Propositions by the British government.
Objections stated. The right of search. Trial for
piracy. A convention sent. Desires knowledge of
European negotiations.

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WRITINGS

OF

JOHN QUINCY ADAMS

WRITINGS OF JOHN QUINCY ADAMS

TO THE PRESIDENT 1

[JAMES MONROE]

DEPARTMENT OF STATE,
WASHINGTON, March 4, 1820.

SIR:

In answer to the question upon which you have done me the honor to require my written opinion in the words following:

"Has Congress a right under the powers vested in it by the Constitution to make a regulation prohibiting slavery in a territory?"

My opinion is that it has.

And in answer to the question in the words following:

"Is the eighth section of the act, which passed both Houses on the 3d instant for the admission of Missouri into the Union, consistent with the Constitution?" 3

My opinion is that it is.

Which is respectfully submitted.

JOHN QUINCY ADAMS.

1 In his Memoirs for 1820 Adams has recorded the impressions made upon his mind by the Missouri question and the formation of a conviction may be there traced. See especially the entries for February 23, 24, and March 3 and 5, 1820. 2 Interdicting slavery forever in the territory north of latitude 36° 30′.

'The original form of this question was, whether the eighth section was applicable only to the territorial state, or could extend to it after it should become a state. The discussion and reasons for changing the question are given in Memoirs, March 3, 1820.

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