Слике страница
PDF
ePub

H. OF R.]

Indian Annuities.

[JUNE 13, 1834.

It

you passed a law authorizing the public land to be sold Mr. PEYTON said that he was as much a friend to the in tracts of forty acres, expressly for the benefit of this prosperity of the new States as any member on the floor; class of people; so that now any poor man, who can but, situated as leis own State (Tennessee) was, the bill raise fifty dollars, can go into any land office in the provided no relief or benefit for it, because there were Union and buy him a little spot to live upon, Now, sir, no unsold lands in the State worth $1 25. As he considhow the man who cannot raise fifty dollars to buy forty ered that State entitled to equal justice from the older acres, can raise two hundred to buy one hundred and States, be thought the bill ought to go further. Could it sixty acres-the quantity for which the bill gives a pre- be wise policy to keep our public lands a forest? A genemption right-was past his comprehension, and had not tleman from Vermont bad ins'nuated that a blaze upon a yet been explained in any one of the many answers to tree, and the planting of a few potatoes, would be held what had been said by him when he was up before. Il to be occupancy under the bill. He would ask that genthe pre-emption were brought down to forty acres, the teman whether any of the people from his part of the poor man who could raise his fifty dollars, and no more, country would ever go upon the public lands, if no trees would have a chance under this bill. But those only were blazed and no potatoes planted? The gentleman who can raise two hundred dollars can avail themselves considered the bill as involving a great hardship upon the of its benefits. This fact, as well as what is known of speculators, who came in large companies, with hundreds the history of the pre-emption law of 1830, shows that of thousands of dollars in their hands, to increase their forthe bill is intended for another and far different class of tunes by buying public lands. But what injustice was there men; for men of property, who want to make a specula- in allowing a poor man to purchase that from the Governtion, by selecting all the choice spots, and then get them ment at a reasonable price, which he must otherwise purat the price of “refuse land.” He felt the firmest con- chase from them at any price they choose to ask? That viction that, if the bill passed, the valuable cotton landspoor man who had blazed the trees and planted the potayet to come into market, all the fine water power and toes had chosen that spot as the home of his children. sites for towns, all your mineral country, and all the In- He had expended upon it his labor. He had toiled in dian improvements which the Government had paid for at hope. He had given it value, and he loved the spot. the rate of perhaps twelve or filteen dollars per acre, was bis all. When the public sale was proclaimed, if would be sacrificed at the price of one dollar and a that poor man attended it, he might bid to the last cent he quarter; and fall into the hands of men who have no had in the work, and mortage the bed he slept on to claims upon the favor or charity of Congress.

enable him to do it. lle might have his wife and children Mr. ASHLEY said he had risen not to enter into the around him to see him bid; and when he had bid bis very merits of the bill, but mainly for the purpose of replying last cent, one of these speculators would stand by his side ot the remark of the gentleman from Ohio, (Mr. Vinton,) and bid ten dollars more. And thus he would see his in respect to the lead mines. Mr. A. had lately express. little home, on which he had toiled for years, where he ed it as his opinion, that it would be wise policy in the hoped to rear his children and 10 find a peaceful grave, Government to sell the mines. Since then he had re- pass into the hands of a rich moneyed company. Was ceived the returns of the commissioners, and they had ihis a policy to be patronised, to be established, to be confirmed his opinion. The first sale in Missouri hud ta- fixed upon the laboring classes of this'country? When the ken place in 1818; the lead lands were then reserved, poor man had been thus stripped of his all, what tie was and so continued to be till 1829 or 1830, when they were left to make him love his country? Such a policy would offered at public sale, and only thirteen quarter sections but teach the republic to alienate her children. In Tenhad been sold in seven days, and they brought into the nessee, as was well known to most who heard him, land treasury but $1,785, being only ten dollars over the warrants had been laid upon all the valuable soil. And amount at the minimum of $1 25. This was the result, it would be a positive injury, instead of a benefit, 10 sell after they had been withheld from sale for 12 years. The this refuse land at the present Government price. He effect of this policy had been, upon the whole, a loss to would, therefore, move an amendment, proposing that the Government of $1,284. The gentleman had affirm- all public lands unsold within the State of Tennessee be ed that it was the rich who settled the public lands. Now, granted to that State, and be opened to location at 18% on that subject, Mr. A. would only ask one plain ques- cents per acre. tion. He would ask of any rich man in this country, Mr. SPEIGHT, apprehending that amendments to this whether he would risk a location on the public lands? bill would so be multiplied as to prevent its passing this What would he require? He would need extensive session, to put an end to the debate, moved the previous buildings; and could he secure this by the purchase of question. the public lands? No. It was the poor who settled the There being indications that this motion would carry, public domains. It was men who were unable to pur Mr. McCARTY renewed the inquiry whether the chase in the settled parts of the country. And it was a amendment he had offered was or was not understood to wise and humane policy which permitted them to find a be accepted by general consent? home on the lands belonging to the Government. Their The explanation resulted in declaring that it was not so doing so increased the value of the public domain, and received. brought it the sooner into market. And this was the The sense of the llouse was now taken on seconding reason why so much of the public land was now sold in the previous question, when the vote stood: Yeas 91, nues Ohio. The country was selling, and the adjacent lands 54. So the motion was seconded. rose in value.

The previous question baving been put and carried, the Mr. STEWART, deprecating a longer debate, now bill read again, and the yeas and nays ordered; the quesmoved the previous question; but, in the hope of a speedy tion was put on its final passage, and decided in the decision of the bill, consented to withdraw it.

affirmative: Yeas 124, nays 53. The CHAIR stated that the question was on striking So the bill was passed and sent to the Senate. out the enacting clause of the bill; when some conversa.

INDIAN ANNUITIES. tion arose on an inquiry whether Mr. McCartr's amendment had or had not been received by general consent. On motion of Mr. POLK, the flouse then proceeded to The Chair inquiring whether there was any objection consider the bill making appropriations for the payment to it,

of Indian annuities. Mr. McKAY+objected, and offered a further amend Mr. WILLIAMS moved an adjournment; but it was ment, to strike oui two years as the duration of the bill. Inegatived.

Jose 14, 1834.]
Treasury Bank-Indian Annuities--Fortifications.

[H. OF R. Mr. POLK then moved that the House concur in seve he could not vote for the bill making appropriations for ral small amendments, which, on his motion, had been the payment of Indian annuities. inserted in Committee of the Whole. This was agreed Mr. POLK replied that he had been linformed that to; and a long list of other items of amendments were the sum appropriated had been disbursed as it was de concurred in.

signed, which the accounts at the Department would On that item which applies 100,000 dollars, receipts of show, in defraying the expenses of removing the Cherocertain lands sold by the Seneca Indians, to the payment kee and Choctaw tribes of Indians, who had emigrated to of their annuities, a debate arose, in which the propriety the West. The inquiry of the honorable member from of adopting such an amendment was fully discussed by North Carolina, however, he thought would be more Messrs. Adams, POLK, FILLMORE, PARKER, and Binney. appropriately made by a call for information in a distinct

The Senecas sold their lands in New York for 100,000 proposition to that effect, than upon a bill providing for dollars, which was placed by treaty in the hands of the appropriations which the United States were bound by President of the United States, in trust for them, they to treaties to make. receive the interest annually. The money was vested in

Mr. WILLIAMS then said that he would not embarUnited States Bank stock, (of the old bank,) afterwards rass in any way the passage of the Indian annuity bill, in the six per cents., and finally in the three per cents. although he must acknowledge he should have been betIt was afterwards, by law, placed in the treasury, to the ter satisfied than he was if the honorable member bad credit of a certain fund called the Indian appropriation been prepared to give him the information for which he fund. Here it lay dead, while the Government continued had sought. to pay to the Senecas 6,000 dollars annually. The amend

Mr. DAVIS, of South Carolina, then said he rose for ment proposed to pass it to the credit of the Treasury, the purpose of putting a question to the chairman of the to be applied to Indian contingencies.

Committee of Ways and Means, and, indeed, to the comThe amendment was opposed, ag being a violation of mittee, collectively and individually. The chairman has the trust under the treaty.

just moved the House to go into a Committee of the The amendment was amended, on motion of Mr. BIN- Whole, for the purpose of taking up appropriation bills

, NEY, by inserting a proviso, declaring that nothing in before taking any measure to redeem and rescue the pubthe amendment should be considered as prejudicing the lic treasury from its present lawless and unconstitutional

condition. right of the Senecas to the 100,000 dollars.

I now desire, (said Mr. D.,) indeed, demand, The amendment, with this proviso, was concurred in. In the name of the American people, to know whether it Mr. HAWES renewed his amendment, moved in com

is intended to adjourn and leave the public money in the mittee, requiring the annuities to be paid to the chiefs hands of the President, who himself admits that legislaop to persons appointed by them; but it was negatived. tion is necessary, and recommends the action of this The bill was then ordered to its engrossment,

House? You are now called upon to make appropriations, And the House adjourned.

when you are utterly ignorant where or what the treasory is. How dare we go back to our constituents-

The SPEAKER having interposed, and declared the SATURDAY, JUNE 14.

pending motion was not debatable-

Mr. V. said he had risen for the purpose of stating UNITED STATES TREASURY BANK.

that he could not vote for any of these appropriation bills Mr. McKIM asked the unanimous consent of the House unless he was assured that it was the intention of the honto submit the following resolution:

orable member to make some legislative provision on the Resolved, That a select committee be appointed to in- subject of the public treasure. quire into the expediency of reporting a bill to author. Mr. POLK would state that his present object was to ize the issuing of fifteen millions of dollars in treasury go into Committee of the Whole on the state of the Union, notes, bearing an interest of five per cent. per year, un generally. After the appropriation bills were disposed der the direction of a board of commissioners, to be ap- of, if there was time for it, he should be much grati. pointed by law for that purpose, to be loaned out by fied if they could proceed even one stage on the bill, resaid commissioners to such individuals of the several ported by the Committee of Ways and Means, to reguStates, who may apply for a loan, as can give full and late the terms on which the deposites should be placed in satisfactory security for the reimbursement of the same the State banks. on the first day of July, 1836.

Mr. DAVIS, Then it is to be understood it is your inMr. WILLIAMS objecting

tention to proceed with that bill. Mr. McKIM moved a suspension of the rule, to enable Mr. POLK assenting, the House, on his motion, resolyhim to offer the resolution; whereupon,

ed itself into Committee of the Whole on the state of the Mr. WILLIAMS withdrew his objection, being wil. Union, (Mr. Gholson in the chair,) and took up the hill ling, be said, that this “experiment” might have a trial making appropriations for certain before the House. The objections were, however, renewed, and the

FORTIFICATIONS FOR 1834. Rouse finally negatived the motion to suspend the rule,

Mr. POLK gave notice that, when the bill should be 69 as to allow it to be offered; the House, which was at in the House, it was his intention, as he had formerly that time very thin, being about equally divided upon the intimated, to propose reductions in the items for Castle question.

Island, &c.

Mr. WHITE, of Florida, moved an amendment for INDIAN ANNUITIES.

completing the fortifications and making repairs at St. Mr. POLK rose to ask the unanimous consent of the Augustine, 50,000 dollars. House to take up the bill making appropriations for In Mr. W. explained the necessity for this appropriation, dran annuities, which being objected to, he finally moved and, after a few remarks from Mr. Polk, in opposition, a suspension of the rule for the purpose of going into who expressed his hope that discussion would be deferred Committee of the Whole on the state of the Union on until the bills were in the House, it was rejected. Bundry appropriation bills.

Mr. McKIM then moved an amendment for the repairs Mr. WILLIAMS desired to have some information of the works erected for the defence of Baltimore, and is respect to the outlay of a former appropriation of at the mouth of the Patapsco river, $25,000; which was 199,000 for the removal of Indians. Otherwise, he said, also rejected,

VOL. X.--281

H. OF R.)

Military Academy.

[JUNE 14, 1834.

Mr. PARKER moved to strike out the appropriation bill under consideration, because we have now but thirof $100,000 for the fort on Throg's Neck, East river, teen days remaining in this session for the transaction of New York; which was rejected.

business; and it is to be apprehended that the discussion Mr. GORHAM then proposed an amendment, merging which may arise upon it will not only delay its passage, the items for the repair of Fort Independence and the but may be a means of preventing the House from acting item for the fort on George's Island into one, and redu- upon many important subjects which still remain to be cing the sum proposed by die bill to $125,000; which was acted upon. The honorable gentleman has avowed himrejected.

self to be decidedly in favor of abolishing the West Point Mr. PINCKNEY moved an amendment, to insert, in Academy, and I have no doubt he is sincere in the belief substance, " that the appropriation of $50,000 for that this is the surest way to effect his object. Charleston harbor should be expendedl, under the direc I could have wished, however, that the subject had tion of the Secretary of War, at Fort Moultrie and Castle been brought before the House upon a bill introduced Pinckney, which he said he proposed in accordance with for that purpose. But, since the honorable gentleman certain resolutions entered into, and transmitted to him has chosen this method, and seems disposed to press it to from the town council of Moultrieville.

a decision, I am, for one, now prepared to record my The amendment being rejected

vote upon the question. Mr. PINCKNEY notified the House that it was his in. It will be recollected that a resolution was introduced tention to renew it in another stage of the bill.

by the honorable gentleman from Kentucky, (Mr. The bill was then laid aside.

Ilawes,] to abolish this institution, which has been lying The bill making appropriations for the payment of on our table from commencement of the session, claims of the Georgia militia, also the bill making addi- unacted upon, not from the want of a disposition on the tional appropriations for the national armory at Harper's part of that honorable gentleman to call it up, but because Ferry, were taken up, considered, and severally laid the several bank resolutions and the report of the Comaside.

mittee of Elections have, in fact, engrossed all the time of The committee having disposed of the light-house bill, the House which is assigned to the consideration of resowhich underwent sundry amendments-

lutions. It is also within the recollection of the House A struggle commenced, as usual, in reference to what that the honorable gentleman from Maine [Mr. SMITR] business should next be considered. Mr. BINNEY mov. gave notice, some time ago, of his intention to offer an ed the bill for West Point; Mr. ASHLEY the bill to con- amendment to the bill now under consideration; which, tinue the Cumberland road to Jefferson city; and Mr. if adopted, would, I have no hesitation in saying, effectWHITE the coin bill.

ually destroy the institution. It is, perhaps, proper that The committee agreed to consider the bill making ap- I should say that the question, with respect to the expepropriations for the

diency of abolishing the Academy, was referred to the MILITARY ACADEMY AT WEST POINT.

Committee on Military Affairs, upon two several resolu

tions transmitted to this House from the Legislatures of The bill having been read by sections, the word "&c.,"two of the States in this Union, recommending it for the was, on motion of Mr. ADAMS, striken out wherever it consideration and action of Congress; and that the distinoccurred.

guished chairman of that commitee (Mr. R. M. JOHNSON) The salary of a clerk was, on motion of Mr. McKay, recently submitted an able report on the subject, in favor reduced from 1,000 to 900 dollars.

of the institution. That report (said Mr. W.) ought to An amendment was moved, to enable the accounts of be read by every American. That honorable chairman a lieutenant to be settled, who had acted as an agent 10 bas, with his usual industry, deliberately investigated the purchase apparatus.

origin and history of the institution, its system of inThe second section of the bill, which went to increase struction and discipline, and its effect upon the character the allowance of the professor of drawing, (in the expec- of the army and of the nation; and has put at rest for ever tation of retaining Leslie, who has since returned to the constitutional objection which has been raised by the England,) was striken out.

honorable gentleman, (Mr. DICKINSON;] and I therefore Mr. HÁWES moved an amendment, providing that if beg leave, most respectfully, to refer him to that docuany student did not complete his education at the acade- ment for a satisfactory reply to his argument on that my, or, having completed it, should refuse to serve for

point. years in the army, should not receive the benefit of I am therefore induced to think, from the imposing the bill.

character which the subject has assumed, that it is due to Mr. EWING considered this amendment as well cal. the army, to the institution, and to the country at large, culated to destroy the institution, and as involving great that an immediate decision should be had upon it. I have inequality and injustice in the treatment of the students. no fears, myself, as regards the result; but I trust a vote He wished that the people of the West should have an will now be taken, that the public may know whether it opportunity of having their children educated there, as is to be broken down or not. well as those from the old States had been.

The honorable gentleman (Mr. Dickinson] commenced Mr. WARDWELL suggested that the amendment must his speech by calling in question the expediency as well be modified, as it was now inconsistent with the bill.

as the constitutionality of the institution; and maintained Mr. HAWES withdrew it for the present.

that, as it formed no part of the peace establishment, the Mr. DICKINSON, of Tennessee, moved to amend the best interest of the nation required that it should be abol bill by striking out the enacting clause, (which would ished. destroy the bill.) He supported bis motion by a speech, How is the fact, sir, with respect to this objection? at length, of great animation, in which he commented on will be seen, by reference to the act entitled “ An ac the aristocratic character of the Academy, as at present fixing the military peace establishment of the Unite conducted; extolled the value of education in a free States," passed the 16th day of March, 1802, that the State, but deprecated its being exclusively confined to Military Academy was then, in its incipient stage, mad the children of members of Congress and other influen- and constituted a part of the army, in the words of the ac tial persons.

itself. The Academy was created at the time when th. Mr. WARD said: 1 regret that the honorable gentleman army was re-organized, and the act was entitled "An ac from Tennessee (Mr. Dickinson) has submitted the mo- fixing the military peace establishment." The twenty tion to strike out the enacting clause in the appropriation sixth section of that act empowered the President of th

June 14, 1834.]

Military Acudemy.

(H. OF R.

United States to organize a corps of engineers, to consist Weimar, a military gentleman of much experience, and of one engineer, with the pay, rank, and emoluments of who is now a general in the service of the King of the a major; two with the pay, rank, and emoluments of a Netherlands. He states, in his book of travels through captain; two with the pay, rank, and emoluments of sec- this country, that “there is scarcely an army in Europe ond lieutenants; and ten cadets, with pay at sixteen dol- in which the corps of officers is better composed than in lars a month, and two rations a day. The twenty-seventh the United States' service; that no one can, on any acsection of the same act provides that the corps, when count, be an officer if he is not well educated; and that, organized, shall be stationed at West Point, and “consti- therefore, if a young man is seen in the uniform of an tule a Military Academy."

American officer, it may be with confidence inferred that On the 29th of April, 1812, at a period when the coun- he is in every respect fit to maintain his place in any try was on the eve of the late war with Great Britain, society.” It is seldom, it is true, that we find among the another act was passed, declaring that the Military Acad. numerous travellers through this country the slightest emy should consist of the corps of engineers, and the fol- disposition to say a word in its favor, or to do justice to lowing professors and assistants in addition to those our institutions; nor, sir, do I regard what they say. It appointed under the former acts, viz: a professor of ex- is enough for us to know that our countrymen are satisperimental and natural philosophy, a professor of mathe-fied with their present bappy condition, and that they malics, a professor of the art of engineering, with an would not exchange it for that of any people on the assistant for each; and the nuinber of the cadets was by globe. But in this gentleman we have niet with an honorthe same act limited at two hundred and sixty. Previous able exception, and one, too, who has taken great pains to the passage of this act, the establishment was found to to inquire into the character and coroposition of our milibe too limited to furnish the number of well-instructed tary peace establishment; one, too, capable of judging officers, in the different branches of artillery and engi- and estimating its value, who is willing to render justice neering, which the public service called for.

and to speak the truth. Now, sir, I would ask whether a reduction of any part Sir, there is every reason to believe that, if our present of our present small peace establishment is called for at military establishment, small as it is, consisting of less than this time? If we compare it with siinilår establishments seven thousand, be left undisturbed, we shall find, at no of other nations, it will be found, so far as numbers are distant day, that it will be the means of saving a thousand concerned, scarcely to deserve the name of an army. In times more money to this great and growing nation than England there is one soldier to every one hundred and can possibly be saved by the reduction of any portion of forty of its population; in France, one to every hundred it

. And, sir, while it shall offer to those who embrace and ten; in Austria, one to every hundred; in Russia, the military profession a permanent calling, there will be one to every ninety; in Prussia, one to every sixty-eight; inducements for men of talents and character to remain and in Sweden, one to every fifty-one; whilst in this in it; but if it is assailed at every session of Congrese, country there is not in our service, including the cadets, thereby rendering the tenure of office uncertain in it, enough to exceed one soldier out of every two thousand the more reflecting part of the officers will naturally look of our population.

for a retreat, and leave the service as soon as they can If it be necessary to keep up such a force in these re- make their arrangements so to do; nor will that be allspective nations, in order to preserve peace among them the spirit of the service will be destroyed, and the army selves, of how much more consequence is it that we itself will dwindle into that state of insignificance in which should maintain in this, the only legitimate free Govern- the late war found it. ment on the face of the earth, at least the skeleton of an It certainly cannot with propriety be said that the pres. army, in order to preserve unimpaired, from foreign ag- ent military establishment is useless, that it is unnecesgression or intestine commotion, the rights and privileges sary, and that there is no danger to be apprehended from bequeathed to us by our patriotic sires. If the object of abroad or on our Indian frontiers; for, if we look at it as the motion of the honorable gentleman be not the reduc- a who we shall find it advantageously disposed of and tion of our peace establishment, can it be intended with a usefully employed in fortifying our seacoasts and harview to the retrenchment of the expenditure of the pub. bors, in improving our country by means of roads and hic funds? I should hope not; for the institution has been canals, in garrisoning the forts erected to guard our marisustained, and that, too, without a complaint from any time and inland frontiers, and, in fact, every where aid. quarter, while our country was burdened with a national ing, in good feeling with their fellow-citizens, to improve lebt of upwards of one hundred millions; and now, when the condition of thie country, and in diffusing knowledge that debt is extinguished, and when deep solicitude pre- on many subjects yet little understood among us. It does vails among our most enlightened citizens, lest the super- not, like other armies, in time of peace eat the bread of abundance of public revenue which must ere long flow idleness; it is employed more usefully and beneficially to in opon our treasury may tend to corrupt the morals of the country than the army of any nation in the world. our rulers and to endanger the peace of the country and Its organization now approaches as near to perfection as be permanency of the Union itself in the struggle for its we could expect or hope. We have this institution, listribution, it seems to me scarcely possible that the where the youthful officers acquire a theoretical and country will assent to the destruction of the institution on practical knowledge of their profession before they are this ground.

allowed to take the command of or to undertake to Let us, then, for the sake of consistency and the best instruct the soldiers. We bave, besides, one division, interests of the country, preserve an establishment which consisting of one regiment of dragoons and seven regi. lias been so long and anxiously cherished by the first ments of infantry--and another division, consisting of four men and purest patriots in the nation, and one of which regiments of artillery--the former posted on our inland the nation may justly be proud, and happy to possess. frontier, to preserve peace among our citizens and the We bave now in our army, from the highest to the lowest Indian tribes; the latter on the Atlantic and Gulf of grades, many officers of education, of talents, and of dis- Mexico, to guard our commerce, in conjunction with our toguished merit, some of whom have seen no little ser- naval force, and to maintain our rights within our own vice, and most of whom have been educated at this insti- waters. We have, likewise, an admirably-organized ord. tution.

nance corps, and a corps of engineers, composed chiefly Sir, I may here be permitteil to advert to the observa- of officer's educated at West Point; and we have a stair cons of a distinguished traveller, in favor of our small exactly suited to the circunstances of our military armiktary establishment. I allude, sir, to the Duke Saxe rangement. The whole is, in fact, so happily constituted

H. OF R.)

Military Academy.

[June 14, 1834.

that it is capable, at a moment's warning, to render effect- the safety of our civil institutions, yet, as I have before ive, for any service, one hundred thousand men, by in- remarked, there are many advocates for its total destrucstructing them in the manual and in the evolutions of the tion. Indeed it would seem, from some of the views taken line, and by employing the members of the staff to pro. of this subject by the honorable gentleman from Tennesvide for transportation, quarters, fuel, pay, clothing, see, that he and many other persons have adopted a perarms, ammunition, forage and subsistence, hospital and suasion that this country, from its remote position and medical stores, and attendance; all of which are so essen- growing strength, is placed out of the reach of danger or tial to the comfort and very existence of an army in time annoyance from other Powers, and that, consequently, of war, that the bravest troops, for the want of them, can there is no necessity for resorting to the usual precautions be of little service.

for asserting our rights or defending our possessions. Sir, the present military establishment, I do conscien- They appear to think that the time will never come when tiously believe, is equal to all this; and now, sir, shall we, military skill or military spirit will be put in requisition; the representatives of the people, for the paltry consid- and that, therefore, they may safely be suffered quietly to eration of a few thousand dollars, destroy its symmetry, subside in this favored country, which is in future to denay, its very efficiency, by lopping off one of its most pend entirely on its own supposed inherent strength and ornamental and most essential branches?

fortunate position. It is not to be wondered at that, in a country so wide Such notions, sir, are, in my opinion, dangerous in the and extensive as this is, we should find advocates, among highest degree; they are unworthy of statesmen; they our most worthy and intelligent citizens, for the abolition are at war with all the experience of the history of manof this institution; for, sir, we know that there are many kind, and they tend to the neglect of those means which of our best citizens who maintain, if not with as much a prudent forecast will always recommend to the adopability, certainly with as much zeal as the honorable gen- tion of every nation, be its situation what it may. No tleman from Tennessee has manifested on this occasion, nation, sir, can be safe from insult or injuries, that is that it is inexpedient to expend the public money in unable to resist them. To be unprepared for war is the erecting forts on our seaboard, for the protection of our surest way to provoke a war; weakness ever invites incities and of our commerce; nay, sir, I have no doubl sult. The arts of peace, which enrich and embellish nathat there are those who would be glad to see all our for- tions, are incapable of defending them; and wealth, without tifications levelled with the earth. There are also those the power of protecting it, is ever the prey of violence. who are in favor of dismantling our glorious navy, and But, sir, have we no neighbors, rivals, nor enemies, to dismissing from the service our officers and seamen; and apprehend, that we are so willing to turn the sword into it is to be regretted that there are many of our respecta- the ploughshare? Have we no cause of apprehension from ble citizens who are zealous and eloquent advocates for any quarter, that we are content to lay down our arms, repealing all laws with respect to training and disciplining and to go to sleep in the shade of the laurels acquired the militia; some of them on the ground, as they allege, for us by our distinguished sires? Is it safe to let the skill of the demoralizing tendency of the military parades; and and spirit which is necessary, not only to the defence but others from their aversion to bear arms, either in war or the existence and independence of every nation, however in peace. Yes, sir, there are those who would be glad powerful or however insulated, perish under the canto see that important arm of our national defence stricken kers of a calm world and a long peace?" off, on which the honorable gentleman (Mr. Dickinson] Sir, commerce makes neighbors of every nation of the seems willing solely to rely for our future defence. Not. civilized world, and makes them rivals, too. It brings withstanding the feeling of hostility against the militia, it their interests into collision, and rival interests make rival must be admitted that we are measurably indebted to it nations. Does any gentleman that hears me imagine for for our independence, and, consequently, for the seats a moment that, because a good understanding at this we now occupy as the representatives of a great and glo- moment subsists between the United States and England, rious people. It was the militia that gave the first im- it is to last for ever? Are we not rivals in trade on the pulse to the ball of the Revolution; it was the militia that ocean and on the land? Yes, there and every where? faced the enemy at Lexington and at Bunker's Hill; it Have we no unsettled points of dispute remaining, to kinwas the militia that penetrated into the Canadas, through dle into a flame old grudges and jealousies? Is that great an almost impassable forest, and advanced victoriously to and powerful nation willing to give up the right of search the very gates of Quebec; and, in 1776, during that dark and impressment? Is she prepared to admit the people period of the war, the militia nobly resisted the prowess of the United States to the free navigation of the si. Lawof the veteran troops of our enemy on Long Island, at rence, or are they prepared to relinquish it for ever? Is Fort Washington, and at Trenton. In 1777 they gained the boundary line between Maine and Nova Scotia yet for us the signal victory of Bennington, and aided in the settled? Or is there any reason on earth to anticipate an capture of Burguoyne and his army. The defence of the everlasting calm between the two countries! Sir, the southern section of our country, during that memorable farmer makes liay while the sun shines, and a wise seawar, was confided chiefly to them. Their services du- man never thinks of a long calm but as the forerunner of ring the late war, when commanded by experienced a tempest. officers, were no less valuable. They achieved for our In the extremity of our confidence we seem, sir, to country the most important victories during that war. I have forgotten, too, that there are powerful nations growallude to the action at New Orleans, and to the battle of ing up, and waxing stronger and stronger every day, on the Thames. And, sir, when Plattsburg was invaded by our southern as well as northern borders-Canada on land, by one of the best-appointed armies ever sent to one hand, Mexico and Colombia on the other. In the this country, the militia from Vermont and the northern former, the mother country, although burdened with a section of New York poured in from all quarters, volun- heavy national debt, is laying out millions in placing ber teered their services under the gallant General Macomb, provinces in a perfect state of defence, in erecting a forprevented our forts from falling into the hands of the tress at Quebec which will compare, in point of strength, enemy, and thereby secured for us the victory on the with the fortress of Gibraltar, and in the encouragement lake. But although it will be conceded that it is abso- of immigration. It may be said that the stronger these lutely necessary that an effectual and efficient militia provinces grow the sooner they will throw off the yoke should be kept up for our national defence and personal of dependence on England--that they will follow our exsecurity, and that upon their strength in a great measure ample. Granted; but will they be less formidable when depends the very existence of our Government and they are independent?

« ПретходнаНастави »