Speech of Hon. John S. Carlile, of Virginia, on the Bill to Confiscate the Property and Free the Slaves of Rebels
This is a printed version of the speech U.S. senator John S. Carlile, of Virginia, delivered on the Senate floor on March 11, 1862. Carlile opposed a bill to confiscate the property and free the slaves of Confederates. He argued that freeing the slaves was "in violation of the Constitution and in disregard of the acknowledged constitutional rights of their owners and of the States wherein they reside." Despite Carlile's arguments, the bill passed. Congress passed confiscation acts in 1861 and 1862, helping to pave the way for the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863.