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The "Gag Rule" Resolution
December 21,1837
Courtesy of National Archives, Center for Legislative Archives
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Photo of an excerpt from The 'Gag Rule' Resolution
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Document Description
Inundated with abolitionist petitions, a resolution was put before the U.S. House of Representatives to lay aside all anti-slavery literature without considering it. The so-called "gag rule," supported largely by representatives of pro-slavery regions, was first passed in May 1836 and re-enacted annually every year following until 1844 when it was finally defeated.

Resolved, that all petitions, memorials and papers touching the abolition of slavery or the buying, selling, or transferring of slaves in any state, district or territory of the United States be laid upon the table without being debated, printed, read or refined and that no further action whatsoever shall be had thereon-
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