Letter, Thomas Carlin to Emma Smith, 7 September 1842 [Extradition of JS for Accessory to Assault]

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction
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charged upon him, it is not my province to investigate or determine, nor has any court on earth jurisdiction of his case, but the courts of the State of , and as stated in my former letter both the constitution and laws presumes that each and every State in this , are competant to do justice to all who may be charged with crime committed in . Your information that twelve men from Mo. were lying in wait for Mr Smith between and , for the purpose of taking him out of the hands of the officers who might have him in custody, and murdering him, is like many other marvellous stories that you hear in reference to him— not one word of it true, but I doubt not that your mind has been continually harrowed up with fears produced by that, and other equally groundless stories— that that statement is true is next to impossible, and your own judgement if you will but give it scope will soon set you right in reference to it— if any of the citizens of had designed to murder Mr Smith, they would not have been so simple as to perpetrate the crime in , when he would necessarily be required to pass through to the interior of the State of , where the opportunity would have been so much better, and the prospect of escape much more certain— that is like the statement made by Mr Smiths first messenger after his arrest, to Messrs and — saying that I had stated that Mr Smith should be surrendered to the authorities of dead or alive— not one word of which was true. I have not the most distant thought that any person in , or , contemplated personal injury to Mr Smith by violence in any manner whatever.
I regret that I did not see when last at . A previous engagement upon business that could not be dispensed with prevented and occupied my attention that evening untill dark. At half past 1 o clock P.M. I came home and learned that the had called to see me, but the hurry of business only allowed me about ten minutes time to eat my dinner and presuming if he had business of any importance that he would remain in the city untill I returned. It may be proper here in order to afford you all the satisfaction in my power, to reply to a question propounded to my wife by in referrence to Mr Smith viz. wether any other, or additional demand had been made upon me by the of for the surrender of Mr Smith— I answer none, no change whatever has been made in the proceedings. Mr Smith is held accountable only, for the charge as set forth in my warrant under which he was arrested. In conclusion you presume upon my own knowledge of Mr Smiths innocence— and ask why the prosecution is continued against him. Here I must again appeal to your own good judgement and you will be compelled to answer that it is impossible I could know him to be innocent— and as before stated it is not my province to investigate as to his guilt or innocence, but could I know him innocent, and were he my own son, I would nevertheless— (and the more readily) surrender him to the legally constituted authority [p. 202]
charged upon him, it is not my province to investigate or determine, nor has any court on earth jurisdiction of his case, but the courts of the State of , and as stated in my former letter both the constitution and laws presumes that each and every State in this , are competant to do justice to all who may be charged with crime committed in . Your information that twelve men from Mo. were lying in wait for Mr Smith between and , for the purpose of taking him out of the hands of the officers who might have him in custody, and murdering him, is like many other marvellous stories that you hear in reference to him— not one word of it true, but I doubt not that your mind has been continually harrowed up with fears produced by that, and other equally groundless stories— that that statement is true is next to impossible, and your own judgement if you will but give it scope will soon set you right in reference to it— if any of the citizens of had designed to murder Mr Smith, they would not have been so simple as to perpetrate the crime in , when he would necessarily be required to pass through to the interior of the State of , where the opportunity would have been so much better, and the prospect of escape much more certain— that is like the statement made by Mr Smiths first messenger after his arrest, to Messrs and — saying that I had stated that Mr Smith should be surrendered to the authorities of dead or alive— not one word of which was true. I have not the most distant thought that any person in , or , contemplated personal injury to Mr Smith by violence in any manner whatever.
I regret that I did not see when last at . A previous engagement upon business that could not be dispensed with prevented and occupied my attention that evening untill dark. At half past 1 o clock P.M. I came home and learned that the had called to see me, but the hurry of business only allowed me about ten minutes time to eat my dinner and presuming if he had business of any importance that he would remain in the city untill I returned. It may be proper here in order to afford you all the satisfaction in my power, to reply to a question propounded to my wife by in referrence to Mr Smith viz. wether any other, or additional demand had been made upon me by the of for the surrender of Mr Smith— I answer none, no change whatever has been made in the proceedings. Mr Smith is held accountable only, for the charge as set forth in my warrant under which he was arrested. In conclusion you presume upon my own knowledge of Mr Smiths innocence— and ask why the prosecution is continued against him. Here I must again appeal to your own good judgement and you will be compelled to answer that it is impossible I could know him to be innocent— and as before stated it is not my province to investigate as to his guilt or innocence, but could I know him innocent, and were he my own son, I would nevertheless— (and the more readily) surrender him to the legally constituted authority [p. 202]
Page 202