the great State of Ohio be put upon the illegality of that accursed act and it will be the heaviest blow that has yet been struck at the aggressions of the slave power. Let Wisconsin be sustained--and other free states will take the same position.3
But should the Supreme Court of Ohio falter, and affirm the constitutionality of the Fugitive act of 1850--next to the Dred Scott dicta it will be the worst blow freedom has yet received
If a conflict between the courts take place I feel confident that so long as you are Governor State rights will be defended / You can laugh to scorn James Buchanan.4 Should matters come to a crisis, you can summon the free men of 15 states to sustain you. So fear not. You can not conceive the feeling that pervades the people in view of this attrocious Oberlin case.
very Truly yours
P.S. I accompany this note with the result of my correspondence with Colfax5
My friend Colfax replied to my letter promptly. He avowed himself favo[ra]ble to Bates6--thought he was the best man to unite the opposition in 1860, and lead to victory. He agreed with me that it would be dangerous to Mr Seward but thought you were not available for various reasons / I need not recount all that he wrote. I replied at some length and there the matter stopped for a few days. In the mean time Bate's letter was made public and I at once wrote to him denouncing its sentiments on the slavery question, and pronouncing it absurd to longer talk about him for the Presidency &c / He answered me, and admitted that Bates was "played out" and that a new man must be looked for. Yesterday I had a long interview with him at the Richmond house 7 / He was en route to St. Louis, to deliver the address to the I.O.O.Fs8 / We compared notes fully, and I think I have won him over to your side. He admitted that "Chase & Bell" would make a formidable ticket9 He suggested you and Bates. I learn that the Cincinnati Gazette is for Chase & Bates, but Bell would be stronger if he would accept.10 But If Bates could be worked up a little higher and would take the V.P. he would help the ticket in the West / Colfax was fearful that Seward's friends would control the convention & nominate him
Looking over the field my judgement is that you should send some judicious man to see Bell and talk the matter over with him, & feel his