New Jersey Peace Resolutions
March 18 1863

3. And be it resolved, That it is the deliberate sense of the people of this State that the war power within the limits of the Constitution is ample for any and all emergencies, and that all assumption of power, under whatever plea, beyond that conferred by the Constitution, is without warrant or authority, and if permitted to continue without remonstrance, will finally encompass the destruction of the liberties of the people and the death of the Republic; and therefore, to the end that in any event the matured and deliberate sense of the people of New Jersey may be known and declared, we, their representatives in Senate and General Assembly convened, do, in their name and in their behalf, make unto the Federal Government this our solemn


Against a war waged with the insurgent States for the accomplishment of unconstitutional or partisan purposes;

Against a war which has for its object the subjugation of any of the States, with a view to their reduction to territorial condition; ...

Against the domination of the military over the civil laws in States, Territories, or districts not in a state of insurrection;

Against all arrests without warrant; against the suspension of the writ of habeus corpus in States and Territories sustaining the Federal Government, "where the public safety does not require it," and against the assumption of power by any person to suspend such writ, except under the express authority of Congress;

Against the creation of new States by the division of existing ones, or in any other manner not clearly authorized by the Constitution, and against the right of secession as practically admitted by the action of Congress in admitting as a new State a portion of the State of Virginia;

Against the power assumed in the proclamation of the President made January first, 1863, by which all the slaves in certain States and parts of States are for ever set free; and against the expenditures of the public moneys for the emancipation of slaves or their support at any time, under any pretence whatever;

Against any and every exercise of power upon the part of the Federal Government that is not clearly given and expressed in the Federal Constitution - reasserting that "the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people" ...

4. And be it Resolved, That ... while abating naught in her devotion to the Union of the States and the dignity and power of the Federal Government, at no time since the commencement of the present war has this State been other than willing to terminate peacefully and honorably to all a war unnecessary in its origin, fraught with horror and suffering in its prosecution, and necessarily dangerous to the liberties of all in its continuance ...


Documents of American History, edited by Henry Steele Commager, pages 427-428
Appleton-Century-Crofts, New York, 1949