Bangor Daily Whig & Courier

Bangor, Maine

April 30, 1859



How To Get a Proper Jury.



      When a jury is wanted for a special pro-slavery purpose of course the proper thing is to have it constituted entirely of modern democrats.  Thus in the Oberlin slave rescue trials, the Boston Bee says that one of the defendants only has as yet been convicted, but the circumstances develops a very extraordinary state of things in the administration of justice by the United States Courts in Ohio.  Mr. Bushnell was put on trial and had what is called a “struck jury,” – that is each party had a right to strike off peremptorily a certain number of jurors called.  The officer summoned a large number of jurors, but it so happened that they were nearly all Democrats – a very few Republicans were in the list, but every one of them was stuck off by the prosecution, and so Mr. Bushnell was tried by a jury of Democrats, all genuine Lecomptonites and believers in the divine right and practical beauty of “catching niggers.”  A conviction of the defendant under these circumstances was to be anticipated.





The Mississippian

Jackson, Mississippi

July 26, 1859



The Oberlin Rescuers Released.



      The Oberlin fanatics who were arrested for rescuing a slave and trampling under foot the laws of the United States for the rendition of fugitives, have been released, - the Government having determined not to go through the farce of a trial.  A Cleveland paper says:

      “The attempt to enforce the Fugitive Slave act on the Western Reserve by Governmental officials for political effect, has resulted in a most disastrous defeat of the projectors and of the whole scheme.”

      The news spread rapidly, that the Government officials had cared.  Hundreds immediately called on the company to tender their congratulations.  In the afternoon, about five o’clock, a hundred guns were fired, and some several hundreds of our citizens gathered at the jail to escort the rescuers to the depot.  At 5 1-2 o’clock, the whole company, headed by Hecker’s Band, marched two and two to the depot, through Superior and Water streets, the banc playing, “Hail to the Chief,” “Yankee Doodle,” etc.  On arriving at the depot, three stentorian cheers were given with a good will for the rescuers, when Judge Brayton, of Newburgh, was called upon for a speech, which he gave in his vivid and elegant style.  After this the company bid farewell to their friends and took their seats in the cars, and the train started amidst the hurrahs of the people, the band playing that peculiarly appropriate air for the occasion, “Home, Sweet Home.”  Thus has ended the great Oberlin Rescue Case.

      The people of Oberlin were making preparations to receive the Rescuers yesterday afternoon.  We doubt not that the returned husbands, fathers, brothers and sons, will have received a welcome such as the warm hearted people of Oberlin know how to give.





Weekly Standard

Raleigh, North Carolina

June 8, 1859



Important Decision.



      COLUMBUS, OHIO, MAY 30. – The Supreme Court of the State this morning delivered an opinion in the case of Bushnell and Langtree, now under sentence, by the U.S. Court of this district, for rescuing slaves at Oberlin.  The court remanded the prisoners to the custody of the United States Marshal.  Justices Swan, Peck and Scot sustained the constitutionality of the fugitive slave law, and Justices Brinkerhoff and Sutliff dissented.






The Oberlin Slave Rescue Case.

Application for the Release of the Rescuers Refused. – Cleveland, April 28.



      The application to the Supreme Court of Ohio for the release from the custody of the United States Marshal of Bushnell, and the other rescuers of a fugitive slave at Oberlin, was refused to-day.  The Court expressed no opinion regarding the constitutionality of the fugitive slave law.








The Leader

London, England

May 5, 1859





      Bushnell had been found guilty in the United States District court of rescuing the negro John, at Oberlin.  Sentence had not been pronounced.  This is the first of the Oberlin rescue indictments tried.