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these friends and advisers advised him best, and certain, also, that he had more knowledge of befriended him most. In the mean time, if this the position of the club than this-else how brother, the witness, be one of these advisers, could he have placed his hand on it so readily ? and advised the retraction, he has, most em- -and where else could he have obtained this phatically, the lives of his brothers resting knowledge, except from Frank? upon his evidence, and upon his conduct. Compare the situation of these two witnesses. Do | Here Mr. Dexter said that Mr. Colman had you not see mighty motive enough on the one had other interviews with Joseph, and might side, and want of all motive on the other? I
have derived the information from him at prewould gladly find an apology for that witness, in his agonized feelings, in his distressed situa- | vious visits. Mr. Webster replied, that Mr. tion ;-in tbe agitation of that hour, or of this. Colman had testified that he learned nothing in I would gladly impute it to error, or to want of relation to the club until this visit. Mr. Dexter recollection, to confusion of mind, or disturb- denied +
denied there being any such testimony. Mr. ance of feeling. I would gladly imputė to any pardonable source, that which cannot be recon- | Colman's evidence was then read from the notes ciled to facts and to truth; but, even in a case of the judges, and several other persons, and calling for so much sympathy, justice must yet Mr. Webster then proceeded : prevail, and we must come to the conclusion, however reluctantly, which that demands from My point is, to show that Phippen Knapp's us.
story is not true, is not consistent with itself. It is said, Phippen Knapp was probably cor- | That taking it for granted, as he says, that he rect, because he knew he should be called as a heard all that was said to Mr. Colman in both witness. Witness—to what? When he says cells, by Joseph, and by Frank; and that Joseph there was no confession, what could he expect did not state particularly where the club was to bear witness of? But I do not put it on the deposited; and that he knew as much siput the ground that he did not hear; I am compelled to place of deposit of the club, as Mr. Colman put it on the other ground—that he did hear, knew; why then, Mr. Colman must either have and does not now truly tell what he heard. been miraculously informed respecting the club,
If Mr. Colman were out of the case, there are or Phippen Knapp has not told you the whole other reasons why the story of Phippen Knapp truth. There is no reconciling this, without should not be believed. It has in it inherent supposing Mr. Colman has misrepresented what improbabilities. It is unnatural and inconsist- took place in Joseph's cell, as well as what took ent with the accompanying circumstances. He place in Frank's cell. tells you that they went to the cell of Frank, Again: Phippen Knapp is directly contrato see if he had any objection to taking a trial, dicted by Mr. Wheatland." Mr. Wheatland tells and suffering his brother to accept the offer of the same story as coming from Phippen Knapp, pardon :" in other words, to obtain Frank's con- as Mr. Colman now tells. Here there are two sent to Joseph's making a confession; and in against one. Phippen Knapp says that Frank case this consent was not obtained, that the made no confessions, and that he said he had pardon would be offered to Frank, &c. Did none to make. In this he is contradicted by they bandy about the chance of life, between Wheatland. He, Phippen Knapp, told Wheatthese two, in this way? Did Mr. Colman, after land, that Mr. Colman did ask Frank some having given this pledge to Joseph, after having questions, and that Frank answered them. He received a disclosure from Joseph, go to the cell told him also what these answers were. Wheatof Frank for such a purpose as this? It is im- | land does not recollect the questions or answers, possible ; it cannot be so.
but recollects his reply; which was, “Is not Again: We know that Mr. Colman found this premature? I think this answer is sufficient the club the next day; that he went directly to to make Frank a principal.” Here Phippen the place of deposit, and found it at the first Knapp opposes himself to Wheatland, as well attempt,-exactly where he says he had been as to Mr. Colman. Do you believe Phippen informed it was. Now Phippen Knapp says, Knapp against these two respectable witnesses that Frank had stated nothing respecting the -or them against him? club, that it was not mentioned in that conver- Is not Mr. Colman's testimony credible, natsation. He says, also, that he was present in ural, and proper ? To judge of this, you must the cell of Joseph all the time that Mr. Colman go back to that scene. was there, that he believes he heard all that The murder has been committed; the two was said in Joseph's cell; and that he did not Knapps were now arrested; four persons were himself know where the club was, and never already in jail supposed to be concerned in had known where it was, until he heard it sta- it—the Crowninshields and Selman and Chase. ted in court. Now, it is certain, that Mr. Col. | Another person at the eastward was supposed man says he did not learn the particular place to be in the plot; it was important to learn of deposit of the club from Joseph; that he only the facts. To do this, some one of those suslearned from him that it was deposited under pected must be admitted to turn states' witthe steps of the Howard street meeting-house, ness. The contest was, who should have this without defining the particular steps. It is privilege? It was understood that it was about
to be offered to Palmer, then in Maine: there always congruous, and agrees with itself. Every was no good reason why he should have the truth in the universe agrees with every other preference. Mr. Colman felt interested for the truth in the universe; whereas falsehoods not family of the Knapps, and particularly for Joseph. only disagree with truths, but usually quarrel He was a young man who had hitherto sustain- among themselves. Surely Mr. Colman is ined a fair standing in society; he was a husband. | fluenced by no bias-no prejudice; he has no Mr. Colman was particularly intimate with his feelings to warp him—except now, he is confamily. With these views he went to the prison. tradicted, he may feel an interest to be believed. He believed that he might safely converse with If you believe Mr. Colman, then the evidence the prisoner, because he thought confessions / is fairly in the case. made to a clergyman were sacred, and that he' I shall now proceed on the ground that you could not be called upon to disclose them. He do believe Mr. Colman. went the first time, in the morning, and was When told that Joseph had determined to requested to come again. He went again at confess, the defendant said ,-“It is hard, or three o'clock; and was requested to call again unfair, that Joseph should have the benefit of at five o'clock. In the mean time he saw the confessing, since the thing was done for his father and Phippen, and they wished he would benefit." What thing was done for His benefit? not go again, because it would be said the pris- | Does not this carry an implication of the guilt oners were making confession. He said he had of the defendants Does it not show that he engaged to go again at five o'clock; but would had a knowledge of the object, and history of not, if Phippen would excuse him to Joseph. the murder ? Phippen engaged to do this, and to meet him at The defendant said, "he told Joseph when he his office at five o'clock. Mr. Colman went to proposed it, that it was a silly business, and the office at the time, and waited; but as Phip. would get us into trouble." He knew, then, pen was not there, he walked down the street what this business was, ; he knew that Joseph and saw him coming from the jail. He met proposed it, and that he agreed to it, else he him, and while in conversation, near the church, could not get us into trouble; he understood its he saw Mrs. Beckford and Mrs. Knapp, going bearing, and its consequences. Thus much was in a chaise towards the jail. He hastened to said under circumstances that make it clearly meet them, as he thought it not proper for them evidence against him, before there is any preto go in at that time. While conversing with tence of an inducement held out. And does them near the jail, he received two distinct not this prove him to have had a knowledge of messages from Joseph, that he wished to see the conspiracy? him. He thought it proper to go: he then He knew the daggers had been destroyed, and went to Joseph's cell, and while there it was he knew who committed the murder. How that the disclosures were made. Before Joseph could he have innocently known these facts? bad finished his statement, Phippen came to Why, if by Richard's story, this shows him the door; he was soon after admitted. A short guilty of a knowledge of the murder, and of interval ensued, and they went together to the the conspiracy. More than all, he knew when cell of Frank. Mr. Colman went in by invita- the deed was done, and that he went home tion of Phippen; he had come directly from afterwards. This shows his participation in that the cell of Joseph, where he had for the first deed. “Went home afterwards”-home, from time learned the incidents of the tragedy. He what scene!-home, from what fact?-home, was incredulous as to some of the facts which from what transaction ?-home, from what he had learned, they were so different from his place? This confirms the supposition that the previous impressions. He was desirous of know- prisoner was in Brown street for the purposes ing whether he could place confidence in what ascribed to him. These questions were directly Joseph had told him-he therefore put the ques- put, and directly answered. He does not intions to Frank, as he has testified before you; intimate that he received the information from answer to which, Frank Knapp informed him, another. Now, if he knows the time, and
1. “That the murder took place between ten went home afterwards, and does not excuse and eleven o'clock."
himself, -is not this an admission that he had a 2. “That Richard Crowninshield was alone hand in this murder? Already proved to be a in the house."
conspirator in the murder, he now confesses 3. “ That he, Frank Knapp, went home after that he knew who did it--at what time it was wards."
done, was himself out of his own house at the 4. “That the club was deposited under the time, and went home afterwards. Is not this steps of the Howard street meeting-house, and conclusive, if not explained? Then comes the under the part nearest the burying ground, in a club. He told where it was. This is like posrat hole, &c."
session of stolen goods. He is charged with the 5. “That the dagger or daggers had been guilty knowledge of this concealment. He worked up at the factory."
must show, not say, how he came by this knowIt is said that these five answers just fit the ledge. If a man be found with stolen goods, case; that they are just what was wanted, and he must prove how he came by them. The neither more or less. True they are, but the place of deposit of the club was premeditated reason is, because truth always fits; truth is I and selected, and he knew where it was.
Joseph Knapp was an accessory, and acces- Gentlemen, I have gone through with the evisory only; he knew only what was told him. dence in this case, and have endeavored to state But the prisoner knew the particular spot in it plainly and fairly, before you. I think there which the club might be found. This shows are conclusions to be drawn from it, which you his knowledge something more than that of an cannot doubt. I think you cannot doubt that accessory.
there was a conspiracy formed for the purpose This presumption must be rebutted by evi- of committing this murder, and who the conspi. dence, or it stands strong against him. He has rators were. . too much knowledge of this transaction, to have That you cannot doubt, that the Crownincome innocently by it. It must stand against shields and the Knapps, were the parties in him until he explains it.
this conspiracy. This testimony of Mr. Colman is represented. That you cannot doubt, that the prisoner at as new matter, and therefore an attempt has the bar knew that the murder was to be done been made to excite a prejudice against it. It on the night of the 6th of April. is not so. How little is there in it, after all, That you cannot doubt, that the murderers that did not appear from other sources? It is of Capt. White were the suspicious persons seen mainly confirmatory. Compare what you learn | in and about Brown street on that night. from this confession, with what you before That you cannot doubt, that Richard Crownknew :
inshield was the perpetrator of that crime. As to its being proposed by Joseph-was not That you cannot doubt, that the prisoner at that true?
the bar was in Brown street on that night. As to Richard's being alone, &c., in the house If there, then it must be by agreement-to -was not that true?
countenance, to aid the perpetrator. And if so, As to the daggers—was not that true? then he is guilty as principal.
As to the time of the murder—was not that Gentlemen, —Your whole concern should be true ?
to do your duty, and leave consequences to take As to his being out that night-was not that care of themselves. You will receive the law true ?
from the court. Your verdict, it is true, may As to his returning afterwards—was not that endanger the prisoner's life ; but then, it is to true ?
save other lives. If the prisoner's guilt has been As to the club—was not that true?
shown and proved, beyond all reasonable doubt, So this information confirms what was known you will convict him. If such reasonable doubts before, and fully confirms it.
of guilt still remain, you will acquit him. You One word, as to the interview between Mr. are the judges of the whole case. You owe a Colman and Phippen Knapp on the turnpike. duty to the public, as well as to the prisoner at It is said that Mr. Colman's conduct in this the bar. You cannot presume to be wiser than matter, is inconsistent with his testimony. the law. Your duty is a plain, straightforward There does not appear to me to be any incon-one. Doubtless, we would all judge him in sistency. He tells you that his object was to mercy. Towards him, as an individual, the save Joseph, and to hurt no one ; and least of law incalcates no hostility ; but towards him, all the prisoner at the bar. He had, probably, if proved to be a murderer, the law, and the told Mr. White, the substance of what he heard oaths you have taken, and public justice, deat the prison. He had probably told him that mand that you do your duty. Frank confirmed what Joseph had confessed. With consciences satisfied with the discharge He was unwilling to be the instrument of harm of duty, no consequences can harm you. There to Frank. He therefore, at the request of is no evil that we cannot either face or fly Phippen Knapp, wrote a note to Mr. White, re- from, but the consciousness of duty disrequesting him to consider Joseph as authority garded. for the information he had received. He tells A sense of duty pursues us ever. It is omniyou that this is the only thing he has to regret; present, like the Deity. If we take to ourselves as it may seem to be an evasion,-as he doubts the wings of the morning and dwell in the utmost whether it was entirely correct. If it was an parts of the seas, duty performed, or duty vioevasion, if it was a deviation, if it was an error, lated, is still with us, for our happiness, or our it was an error of mercy-an error of kindness; misery. If we say the darkness shall cover us, an error that proves he had no hostility to the in the darkness as in the light our obligations prisoner at the bar. It does not in the least are yet with us. We cannot escape their power, vary his testimony, or affect its correctness. nor fly from their presence. They are with us Gentlemen, I look on the evidence of Mr. Col- in this life, will be with us at its close; and in man as highly important; not as bringing into that scene of inconceivable solemnity, which the cause new facts, but as confirming, in a lies yet farther onward-we shall still find ourvery satisfactory manner, other evidence. It is selves surrounded by the consciousness of duty, incredible that he can be false, and that he is to pain us wherever it has been violated, and seeking the prisoner's life, through false swear-to console us so far as God may have given us ing. If he is true, it is incredible that the pris- grace to perform it. oner can be innocent.
JOSEPH Story was born at Marblehead, Massachusetts, on the eighteenth of September, 1779. He was educated at Harvard College, and upon leaving Cambridge returned to his native town, and commenced the study of law with Mr. Samuel Sewall, then an advocate of high rank, a member of Congress, and subsequently Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Massachusetts. From some of his letters written about this time it is to be judged, that the profession which young Story had chosen was not entirely in accordance with his inclinations. “I have begun the study of law," he wrote to a friend, " and shall continue it with unremitting diligence; but a sigh of regret often accompanies my solitary moments,—a sigh expressive of my ardent love of literary fame, and the impossibility of devoting all my attention to the object of my wishes. I candidly confess, that the hope of “immortality' alone buoys me up, and if this hope should be destroyed, even should I remain unaffected by the meanness of mankind, all pleasure will have flown, and this world will appear a dreary waste, a wild without a flower.'” But this feeling of regret was of short duration. He soon acquired a love for the intricacies and subtleties of the law, and applied himself closely to study, for many months devoting fourteen hours a day to the office and to his legal books. In the midst of these labors he indulged quite freely in general reading, and composition; and on the occasion of the death of General Washington, he delivered a eulogy at the request of the citizens of Marblehead. During the same period he composed a poem, entitled The Power of Solitude.
Mr. Story left the office of Mr. Sewall in January, 1801, and entered that of Mr. Samuel Putnam, at Salem, where six months after he opened an office and commenced practice. His business seems to have been not very extersive during the first few years of his professional life. At this time he became an active politician, and embraced the cause of the republican or Jeffersonian party. In 1803 the station of naval officer of the port of Salem was tendered him, but he declined the appointment, both from professional considerations and motives of utility. During the following year he re-wrote his poem on the The Power of Solitude, and published it, with several fugitive pieces in verse. On the fourth of July, 1804, he pronounced an oration commemorative of the independence of the United States, and soon after published a Selection of Pleadings in Civil Actions. At this time bis practice was daily increasing; "his position at the bar was prominent," says his son, “and he was engaged in nearly all the cases of importance. His manner to the jury was earnest and spirited; he managed his causes with tact, was ready in attack or defence, and had great eloquence of expression. As an advocate, he showed the same sagacity of perception, which no intricacy of detail could blind and no suddenness of attack confuse, which afterwards so distinguished him as a judge. In the preparation of cases he was cautious and scrupulous, patiently mastering the law and the facts before the trial, and never relying on first views and general knowledge.*
In 1805, Mr. Story was elected to the Massachusetts legislature, and at once took a prominent position in that body. In all the debates he appeared with the greatest readiness, and scarcely a committee of consequence was appointed during his term, of which he was not an active and principal member. After remaining in the legislature three sessions, he was elected to Congress, but served in that body for a few months only. On his return to Massachusetts, he was again chosen to the legislature, and continued in that position until January, 1812. During a portion of his legislative career, he occupied the speaker's chair. About this time he edited and pub lished an edition of Chitty on Bills of Exchange and Promissory Notes ; Abbott on Shipping, and Lares on A8dumpsit, in addition to the duties of his profession.
* Life and Letters of Joseph Story, edited by his son.
In November, 1811, he was appointed by President Madison an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. At that time he was but thirty-two years of age, the youngest judge on the bench, and, with the single exception of Mr. Justice Buller, of the King's Bench, the youngest that ever had been elevated to a similar position. The spotless integrity of his character, the disinterestedness of his sentiments, and his acquirements as a lawyer, pre-eminently fitted him for the duties he was called upon to perform. Although many of his political opponents viewed his appointment with distrust and condemnation, their doubts were soon dissipated by the uprightness of his judicial course, and their condemnation turned to praise. After eighteen years of important and distinguished services on the bench, he added to the labors of bis judgeship the equally onerous duties of a professor of law.
Through the munificence of Nathan Dane, the author of the Abridgment of American Law, a professorship of law was founded in Harvard College, with the express stipulation that Judge Story should be its first professor, and that the duties of the office should be so arranged, that they would not interfere with the performance of his labors as a member of the supreme bench. Judge Story assumed the professorship on the twenty-fifth of August, 1829, and soon after removed from Salem to Cambridge, where he established his permanent residence. From this period his time was spent at Washington during the sessions of the Supreme Court, on the first circuit of the New England States, and at Cambridge in the Law School. This latter institution became his favorite, and he always performed its duties with the greatest interest and zeal. His manner towards the students was affectionate and familiar. He was fond of designating them as “my boys,” and without assuming any superiority, or exacting any formal respect, he participated so far as he was able in their success and failure, and extended beyond the narrow period of the school, far into active life, that interest in their behalf which he had contracted as their teacher. His lectures upon what are commonly considered the dry to pics of the law, were delivered with enthusiasm, and illustrated with copious anecdotes from the storehouse of his memory and his experience, and filled with episodes wbich were suggested to his active mind at almost every step. His influence over the students was unbounded. His zeal was contagious, and awakened similar feelings in his auditors, and the enthusiasm of the speaker and audience acted and reacted upon each other. It is unnecessary, in this place, however, to enlarge upon the merits of his government, or to state the success with which his efforts were attended.
Judge Story's literary labors were very extensive. In addition to the numerous valuable legal works he perfected, which now form no inconsiderable portion of the standard text-books of the profession, he prepared many occasional essays and orations, eulogistic and general, which for conciseness, eloquence, and purity of diction, will always command the admiration of the scholar as well as that of the general reader. He also contributed many articles to the American Jurist, as well as to the Encyclopædia Americana, which was prepared by his friend Dr. Lieber. In the latter work the articles on Common Law, Congress of the United States, Death Punishment, Evidence, Legislation, National Lar, and several others are from his pen, and are written with his characteristic ability, and in his usual comprehensive style.
In reviewing the life of Judge Story, the amount of labor he performed seems almost incredible. " Its mere recapitulation," says his son, “is sufficient to appal an ordinary mind. The judgments delivered by him on his circuits comprehend thirteen volumes. The reports of the Supreme Court during his judical life occupy thirty-five volumes, of which he wrote a full share. His various treatises on legal subjects, cover thirteen volumes, besides a volume of Pleadings. He edited and annotated three different treatises, with copious notes, and published a volume of poems. He delivered and published eight discources on literary and scientific subjects, before