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Missouri Digital Heritage :: Divided Loyalties Opening Exhibit :: Divided Loyalties Audio Tour :: Panel 4 - Slavery in the 1820 Constitution - (Missouri State Constitution of 1820)
The Constitution of the State of Missouri has evolved many times over the years. In fact, Missourians have had four different constitutions since becoming a state in 1821. This panel shows pages from the original 1820 Constitution. This constitution, among other things, precluded the general assembly from passing laws freeing slaves or laws prohibiting the importation of slaves from other states or territories. It also gave the general assembly power to make laws governing the emancipation of slaves by their owners and the circumstances under which freed slaves could settle in the state. These provisions reveal the political climate in the state with regards to slavery.
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