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M[ontgomery] Blair to MVB, 5 February 1857

My dear sir, 

I am very sensible of your kindness in the expressions and in your note of the 31. ult in respect to my Dred Scott argument. I will not fail to send you the opinion of your old friend Taney if he gives one. It seems to be the impression that the opinion of the Court will be adverse to my client & to the power of Congress in the Territories, but I am assured that the Court has not as yet held a conference on the case. It may be true nevertheless that the decision may be as the letter writers predict & the prophecy may like others operate to fulfil itself. I am inclined to think it was made to bring the outside pressure to bear on the decision. 

My father and all the family at Silver Spring are in good health. The old gentleman has fattened indeed this fall & winter & the result of the Election in nowise impairs his spirits. 

He is inclined to think & in that I concur with him that the result of the campaign is in the main good & there is certainly better feeling in Washington at this moment than for years past. Mr. Buchanan as you know has just left us & tho nothing has transpired as to his purposes as to the composition of his Cabinet the impression seems to be that he will not concede as much in that matter to our southern friends as they have desired. They are however very diligent & untiring in their efforts & it is said are threatening Mr Appleton The new Editor with the loss of the printing & The Enquirer thinks of stirring up the  <Kansas>  war again, &c.

If these efforts fail I think matters may go <well>. I hope John will be on hand to look after it. 


I am with great respect 

very truly yours,


I beg to be remembered to Smith & his wife.

Source: DLC Library of Congress
Collection: MVB Papers (DLC)
Series: Series 14 (1 January 1849-24 July 1862; undated)