Boston, July 22, 1859
From the Cleveland Plaindealer.
Oberlin Cases Nolled – Higher Law Triumphant.
We learn with astonishment that the U.S. District Attorney has nolled the indictments against the Oberlin Rescuers now in jail, on condition that the Oberlinites will nollie the indictments against the Kentucky witnesses who were under arrest a trumped up charge of kidnapping. This arrangement, we understand, has been made at the solicitation of the four Kentucky gentlemen, who, while under recognition of the U.S. Court to appear here and testify I these Rescue cases, were indicted by an Oberlin Lorain Jury, and arrested while I the discharge of their duties o a false charge of kidnapping. They were thrust into the Lorain county jail, but were subsequently released on bail. A special term of the Lorain County Court was to be held on the 6th inst., to try them, and a Lorain county jury was all in readiness to send them to purgatory or the penitentiary, without any regard to constitutions, courts, or the laws of the land.
An effort was made to get them out of the hands of the Oberlinites by a writ of Habeas Corpus, issued by Judge Mclean, but eh Sheriff of Lorain hid himself for several days, and the Probate Judge ran away, to prevent the bail from surrendering the prisoners up, so that the writ could take effect, and in this way nullified the law, and sat at defiance that ‘Great Writ of Right’ which these same Oberlinites have resorted to, and have had the full benefit of, on two occasions since these arrests have been made.
Finding no law in Lorain but the Higher Law, and seeing the determination of Sheriff, Judge and Jury to send them to the Penitentiary any way, for no crime under any human law, but on a charge trumped up on purpose to drive them out of the county, and having been kept away from their families most of the summer, and away from their business, at great pecuniary expense of themselves, (for the Government fees for witnesses do not pay board bills,) they proposed to exchange nolles, and the District Attorney consented to it. So the Government has been beaten at last with law, justice and facts all on its side, and Oberlin, with its rebellious Higher Law creed, is triumphant.
The precedent is a bad one. All these factionists have to do in the future, whenever any of their number is arrested for the violation of our statute law, is to pay no regard to the writs of the lower law courts; but threaten the witnesses with the terrors of their own inquisition, and enforce the penalties of the higher law. This is Mormonism, with Prof. Peck acting the part of Brigham Young, and it will have to be put down, as Mormonism has been, by the strong arm of military power.
There will now be some unearthly shoutings by these triumphant myrmidons of Mormonism. Oberlin will blaze in her new-won glory, and Te Deums will be sung in all her churches. There will be a great accession to her calendar of saints. Those immortal men, who, armed with muskets, mobbed the United States officials, while in the discharge of their sworn duties, will now be canonized, instead of cannonaded, and Saint Peck will be listed with Saint Peter, and as worthy to hold the keys of Paradise.