Declaration of Rights
The Indiana Constitution of 1816 contained a bill of rigths, which provided civil rights protection for its citizens. The Constitution guaranteed rigths including trial by jury, protection from illegal search and seizure, freedom of speech, and free elections. Indiana also prohibited slavery, albeit reluctantly. Yet the state constitution made African Americans exceptions. The bill of rights protected only white Americans. Like Ohio, and the rest of the states in the Old Northwest, Indiana began as a white state. Constitutional and statutory law subjugated african Americans.
Constitution of Indiana, Articles 1, 1816.
Section 1. That the general, great, and essential principles of liberty and free government may be recognized, and unalterably established: We declare, That all men are born equally free and independent, and have certain natural, inherent, and unalienable rights; among which are, the enjoying and defending life and liberty, and of acquiring, possessing, and protecting property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.
Section 2. That all power is inherent in the people; and all free governments are founded on their authority, and instituted for their peace, safety and happiness. For the advancement of these ends, they have, at all times, an unalienable and indefeasible right to alter or reform their government in such manner as they may think proper.
Section 3. That all men have a natural and indefeasible right to worship Almighty God according to the dictates of their own consciences: That no