« ПретходнаНастави »
DEBATES OF CONGRESS,
FROM 1789 TO 1856.
FROM GALES AND SEATON'S ANNALS OF CONGRESS; FROM THEIR
REPORTED DEBATES, BY JOHN C. RIVES.
THE AUTHOR OF THE THIRTY YEARS' VIEW.
D. APPLETON & COMPANY, 346 & 348 BROADWAY.
FOLLETT, FOSTER & CO.
EIGHTH CONGRESS.-FIRST SESSION.
BEGUN AT THE CITY OF WASHINGTON, OCTOBER 17, 1803.
PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES,-THOMAS JEFFERSON.
PROCEEDINGS IN THE SENATE.*
MONDAY, October 17, 1803.
The first session of the eighth Congress, conformably to the Constitution of the United States, commenced at the city of Washington, agreeably to the Proclamation of the President of the United States for that purpose; and the Senate assembled on this day.
SIMEON OLCOTT and WILLIAM PLUMER, from New Hampshire;
TIMOTHY PICKERING, from Massachusetts; JAMES HILLHOUSE and URIAH TRACY, from Connecticut;
CHRISTOPHER ELLERY and SAMUEL I. POTTER, from Rhode Island;
STEPHEN R. BRADLEY and ISRAEL SMITH, from Vermont;
DE WITT CLINTON and THEODORUS BAILEY, from New York;
JONATHAN DAYTON and JOHN CONDIT, from New Jersey;
GEORGE LOGAN and SAMUEL MAOLAY, from Pennsylvania;
WILLIAM HILL WELLS and SAMUEL WHITE, from Delaware;
ROBERT WRIGHT and SAMUEL SMITH, from Maryland;
JOHN TAYLOR and WILSON CAREY NICHOLAS, from Virginia;
JOHN BROWN and JOHN BRECKENRIDGE, from Kentucky;
JESSE FRANKLIN and DAVID STONE, from North Carolina;
JOSEPH ANDERSON and WILLIAM COOKE, from Tennessee;
ABRAHAM BALDWIN, from Georgia; and
The VICE PRESIDENT being absent, the Senate
LIST OF MEMBERS OF THE SENATE. New Hampshire.-Simeon Olcott, William Plumer. Vermont.-S. R. Bradley, Israel Smith. Massachusetts.-Jonathan Mason, Timothy Pickering. Rhode Island.-Christopher Ellery, Samuel I. Potter. Connecticut.-James Hillhouse, Urish Tracy. New York.-De Witt Clinton, Theodorus Bailey. New Jersey.-Jonathan Dayton, John Condit. Pennsylvania.-George Logan, Samuel Maclay.
proceeded to the election of a President, pro tem., as the constitution provides, and the ballots being collected and counted, the whole number was found to be twenty-nine, of which fifteen make a majority. Mr. BROWN had 24, Mr. BALDWIN 2, Mr. DAYTON 2, and Mr. PIOK
Consequently, the Honorable JOHN BROWN was elected President of the Senate, pro tempore. The credentials of the following Senators were severally read, to wit:
Of JOSEPH ANDERSON, appointed a Senator by the Legislature of the State of Tennessee; of THEODORUS BAILEY, appointed a Senator by the Legislature of the State of New York; of JAMES HILLHOUSE, appointed a Senator by the Legislature of the State of Connecticut; of SAMUEL MACLAY, appointed a Senator by the Legislature of the State of Pennsylvania; of SAMUEL I. POTTER, appointed a Senator by the Legislature of the State of Rhode Island; of ISRAEL SMITH, appointed a Senator by the Legislature of the State of Vermont; of SAMUEL WHITE, appointed a Senator by the Legislature of the State of Delaware; for the term of six years from and after the third day of March last, respectively: also, of THOMAS WORTHINGTON, appointed a Senator by the Legislature of the State of Ohio; of JOHN CONDIT, appointed a Senator by the Executive of the State of New Jersey; of JOHN TAYLOR, appointed a Senator by the Executive of the State of Virginia, in place of S. T. Mason, deceased; of TIMOTHY PICKERING, appointed a Senator by the Legislature of the State of Massachusetts, in the place of Dwight Foster, resigned; and the oath required by law was, by the PRESIDENT, administered to them respectively.
The oath was also administered to SAMUEL
Delaware.-William H. Wells, Samuel White.
SMITH, appointed a Senator by the Legislature, make a communication to the two Houses, by of the State of Maryland, for the term of six message, immediately. years from and after the third day of March last.
Ordered, That the Secretary wait on the President of the United States and acquaint him that a quorum of the Senate is assembled, and that, in the absence of the VICE PRESIDENT, they have elected the Hon. JOHN BROWN President of the Senate, pro tempore.
The Secretary was directed to give a similar notice to the House of Representatives.
Resolved, That JAMES MATHERS, Sergeant-atArms and Doorkeeper to the Senate, be, and he is hereby, authorized to employ one additional assistant and two horses, for the purpose of performing such services as are usually required by the Doorkeeper to the Senate; and that the sum of twenty-eight dollars be allowed him weekly for that purpose during the session, and for twenty days after.
Resolved, That each Senator be supplied during the present session with three such newspapers, printed in any of the States, as he may choose, provided that the same be furnished at the usual rate for the annual charge of such papers.
A message from the House of Representatives informed the Senate that a quorum of the House had assembled, and had elected the Hon. NATHANIEL MACON their Speaker, and is ready to proceed to business.
Ordered, That Messrs. CLINTON and BRECKENRIDGE be a committee on the part of the Senate, together with such committee as the House of Representatives may appoint on their part, to wait on the President of the United States, and notify him that a quorum of the two Houses is assembled, and ready to receive any communications that he may be pleased to make to them.
A message from the House of Representatives informed the Senate, that the House agree to the resolution of the Senate for the appointment of a joint committee to wait on the President of the United States, and have appointed a committee on their part.
On motion, Resolved, That two Chaplains, of different denominations, be appointed to Congress for the present session, one by each House, who shall interchange weekly.
Ordered, That the Secretary desire the concurrence of the House of Representatives in this resolution.
The following Message was received from the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:
To the Senate and House of
Representatives of the United States :
earlier day than was contemplated by the act of the In calling you together, fellow-citizens, at an last session of Congress, I have not been insensible to the personal inconveniences necessarily resulting from an unexpected change in your arrangements. But matters of great public concernment have rendered this call necessary, and the interest you feel in these will supersede, in your minds, all private considerations.
Congress witnessed, at their late session, the extraordinary agitation produced in the public mind by the suspension of our right of deposit at the port of New Orleans, no assignment of another place having been made according to treaty. They were sensible that the continuance of that privation would be more
injurious to our nation than any consequences which could flow from any mode of redress; but, reposing just confidence in the good faith of the Government whose officer had committed the wrong, friendly and reasonable representations were resorted to, and the right of deposit was restored.
Previous, however, to this period, we had not been unaware of the danger to which our peace would be perpetually exposed whilst so important a key to the commerce of the western country remained under a foreign power. Difficultics too were presenting themselves as to the navigation of other streams, which, arising within our territories, pass through those adPropositions had therefore been authorized jacent. for obtaining, on fair conditions, the sovereignty of New Orleans, and of other possessions in that quarter, interesting to our quiet, to such extent as was deemed practicable; and the provisional appropriation of two millions of dollars, to be applied and accounted for by the President of the United States, intended as part of the price, was considered as conveying the sanction of Congress to the acquisition proposed.* The enlightened Government of France saw, with just discernment, the importance to both nations of such liberal arrangements as might best and permanently promote the peace, interests, and
* This paragraph is entitled to the careful consideration of all who aspire to a practical knowledge of the principles of our Government, and an intimate acquaintance with its early working. Louisiana had been ceded to the United States by the French Government: the treaty for the cession was now to be submitted for the ratification and the legislation which were necessary to carry it into effect: and the President sets out with showing that he had legislative authority for what he had done that the sanction of Congress had been given to the acquisition beforehand-before the negotiation had been instituted. It was Congress-the legislative authority -which had given that previous sanction, held so vital by
The Senate proceeded to the choice of a Chaplain on their part, and the ballots having been collected and counted, the whole number was twenty-eight; of which fifteen make a majority. Mr. GANTT had 15 votes, and Mr. Mr. Jefferson: and, notwithstanding that previous sanction,
Consequently, the Rev. Dr. GANTT was
Mr. CLINTON reported, from the joint committee appointed for the purpose, that they had waited on the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, and that he had acquainted them that he would
the treaty, after ratification by the Senate, was to be submitted to the legislative power, for the exercise of their functions, as to those conditions which the constitution had vested in Congress. What these functions were, in the understanding of Mr. Jefferson's political school, was to give, or refuse the appropriation according to the dictates of their own discretion, uncontrolled by the treaty stipulation.
friendship of both; and the property and sovereignty of all Louisiana, which had been restored to them, has, on certain conditions, been transferred to the United States, by instruments bearing date the 30th of April last. When these shall have received the constitutional sanction of the Senate, they will, without delay, be communicated to the Representatives for the exercise of their functions, as to those conditions which are within the powers vested by the constitution in Congress. Whilst the property and sovereignty of the Mississippi and its waters secure an independent outlet for the produce of the Western States, and an uncontrolled navigation through their whole course, free from collision with other Powers, and the dangers to our peace from that source, the fertility of the country, its climate and extent, promise, in due season, important aids to our Treasury, an ample provision for our posterity, and a wide spread for the blessings of freedom and equal laws.
With the wisdom of Congress it will rest to take those ulterior measures which may be necessary for the immediate occupation and temporary government of the country; for its incorporation into our Union; for rendering the change of government a blessing to our newly adopted brethren; for securing to them the rights of conscience and property; for confirming to the Indian inhabitants their occupancy and selfgovernment, establishing friendly and commercial relations with them, and for ascertaining the geography of the country acquired. Such materials for your information relative to its affairs in general, as the short space of time has permitted me to collect, will be laid before you when the subject shall be in a state for your consideration.
The small vessels authorized by Congress, with a view to the Mediterranean service, have been sent into that sea, and will be able more effectually to confine the Tripoline cruisers within their harbors, and supersede the necessity of convoy to our commerce in that quarter. They will sensibly lessen the expenses of that service the ensuing year.
A further knowledge of the ground in the northeastern and northwestern angles of the United States has evinced that the boundaries established by the treaty of Paris, between the British territories and ours in those parts, were too imperfectly described to be susceptible of execution. It has therefore been thought worthy of attention, for preserving and cherishing the harmony and useful intercourse subsisting between the two nations, to remove, by timely arrangements, what unfavorable incidents might otherwise render a ground of future misunderstanding. A convention has therefore been entered into, which provides for a practicable demarcation of those limit, to the satisfaction of both parties.
An account of the receipts and expenditures of the year ending 30th September last, with the estimates for the service of the ensuing year, will be laid before you by the Secretary of the Treasury, so soon as the receipts of the last quarter shall be returned from the more distant States. It is already ascertained that the amount paid into the Treasury for that year has been between eleven and twelve millions of dollars; and that the revenue accrued, during the same term, exceeds the sum counted on as sufficient for our current expenses, and to extinguish the public debt within the period heretofore proposed.
We have seen with sincere concern the flames of war lighted up again in Europe, and nations, with
which we have the most friendly and useful relations, engaged in mutual destruction. While we regret the miseries in which we see others involved, let us bow with gratitude to that kind Providence, which, inspiring with wisdom and moderation our late Legislative Councils, while placed under the urgency of the greatest wrongs, guarded us from hastily entering into the sanguinary contest, and left us only to look on and to pity its ravages. These will be the heaviest on those immediately engaged. Yet the nations pursuing peace will not be exempt from all evil. In the course of this conflict let it be our endeavor, as it is our interest and desire, to cultivate the friendship of the belligerent nations by every act of justice, and of innocent kindness; to receive their armed vessels with hospitality from the distresses or the sea, but to administer the means of annoyance to none; to establish in our harbors such a police as may maintain law and order; to restrain our citizens from embarking individually in a war in which their country takes no part; to punish severely those persons, citizen or alien, who shall usurp the cover of our flag for vessels not entitled to it, infecting thereby with suspicion those of real Americans, and committing us into controversies for the redress of wrongs not our own; to exact from every nation the observance, towards our vessels and citizens, of those principles and practices which all civilized people acknowledge; to merit the character of a just nation, and maintain that of an independent one, preferring every consequence to insult and habitual wrong. Separated by a wide ocean from the nations of Europe, and from the political interests which entangle them together, with productions and wants which render our commerce and friendship useful to them, and theirs to us, it cannot be the interest of any to assail us, nor ours to disturb them. We should be most unwise, indeed, were we to cast away the singular blessings of the position in which nature has placed us, the opportunity she has endowed us with, of pursuing, at a distance from foreign contentions, the paths of industry, peace, and happiness; of cultivating general friendship, and of bringing collisions of interest to the umpire of reason rather than of force. How desirable, then, must it be, in a Government like ours, to see its citizens adopt, individually, the views, the interests, and the conduct, which their country should pursue, divesting themselves of those passions and partialities which tend to lessen useful friendships, and to embarrass and embroil us, in the calamitous scenes of Europe! Confident, fellow-citizens, that you will duly estimate the importance of neutral dispositions towards the observance of neutral conduct, that you will be sensible how much it is our duty to look on the bloody arena spread before us, with commiseration, indeed, but with no other wish than to see it closed, I am persuaded you will cordially cherish these dispositions in all discussions among yourselves, and in all coinmunications with your constituents; and I anticipate, with satisfaction, the measures of wisdom which the great interests now committed to you will give you an opportunity of providing, and myself, that of approving and of carrying into execution with the fidelity I owe to my country.